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Wilkins takes seat on Spring Hope town board

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SPRING HOPE — Newly installed Commissioner Prudence Wilkins said she will work vigorously for the community that elected her.

“I will continue to introduce myself to people and raise awareness about the commissioners,” Wilkins said during Monday evening’s town board meeting. “I ask people and they don’t know their commissioners. I’m going to let people know they have somewhere to take grievances so they’re not just complaining.”

Wilkins also thanked the police department, especially Officer J. Gwaltney, for help with a fundraiser she organized for a 7-year-old drive-by shooting victim.

“Officer Gwaltney went above and beyond the call of duty,” Wilkins said. “He truly showed that he cares about our community.”

Town Manager Jae Kim read from a letter he received from Pamela Sanderson Sparks praising Police Chief Nathan Gant.

Sparks wrote that she was the chief polling judge for the town during the November municipal election. Sparks said she’s pleased Gant and two of his officers checked on the polling place several times on Election Day.

“All employees working the election were female,” Sparks wrote. “The value of Chief Gant putting our minds at ease early that day by his presence and continued follow-up was greatly appreciated and he and his officers’ genuine concern for our well-being and safety made for a pleasurable work environment.”

Commissioners reappointed Mayor Pro-tem Drew Griffin to another term in the leadership post. As he’s done in the past, Griffin will run board meetings whenever Mayor Buddy Gwaltney isn’t present.

Griffin congratulated Wilkins and Commissioner Brenda Lucas for their victories in November’s municipal election.

“We’re happy to have you come aboard,” Griffin told Wilkins at the meeting’s conclusion.