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franklin county times

Council elects Perry as new president

By By Fredie Carmichael / staff writer
June 19, 2002
First-term Meridian Councilwoman Mary Perry of Ward 2 was named the city council's new president Tuesday night and will replace outgoing president George Thomas.
Perry was not at the meeting because she was attending a church conference in Nashville. But Thomas and others said she will do well leading the council for the next year.
Thomas said Perry's election is a milestone because she is the first black woman to hold the job.
The council voted 4-0 to name Perry as president; Perry has been serving as vice president. The council also voted 4-0 to name Ward 2 Councilman Barbara Henson vice president.
The city council elects a new president and vice president every year for a one-year term. Terms for both Perry and Henson officially begin July 1 and run through June 30, 2003.
The president of the council leads the five-member city council and helps members set city policy and priorities. The president also plays a role in crafting the city's annual budget.
Thomas said the position is usually rotated annually among council members.
Henson said the council's current policy to nominate and elect their president is not official but "it works."
The Mary Perry File
Name: Mary Perry.
Occupation: City councilwoman and retired school teacher with Meridian public schools.
Other organizations: Member, State Democratic Executive Committee; member, Mississippi Federation of Democratic Women; vice-chairman, local Democratic Party Executive Committee; member, Jackson State University Alumni Association; member, State and National Teachers Association; member, National Association for the Advancement of Colored People; member, Retired Teachers Association; member, MATH First; member, Business &Professional Women's Club; member, Phi Delta Kappa.