Citizens Endorsements/Melanee and David McGee
“Actions speak louder than words, but there are times when words left unsaid speak volumes to a friend.”
I have no idea who originally said this, but I have been contemplating its underlying truth for several weeks now. It has resonated with me, so it is with respect that I step a little outside of my comfort zone and speak words on behalf of a friend.
We have been personal friends with Tommy and Carol Wheless for many years. We have served through the Rotary Club together, through the Chamber of Commerce together, on various charitable events in our community, and have been supporters of each other’s businesses.
I endorse Tommy Wheless in his bid to be the next Sheriff of Oglethorpe County for more reasons than just friendship, however. Following are some of those reasons:
- Tommy has been in and around law enforcement his entire adult life. There is plenty enough law enforcement experience in his resume’ to form an excellent basis for the “policing” requirement associated with the job of Sheriff.
- Tommy has been involved in supporting our community and the day-to-day operations HERE for his entire life. It’s not just a recent string of events that he has been seen at; it is literally YEARS of investment of his time, energy, and money into OGLETHORPE COUNTY schools, arts, booster club, Rec Dept, church, patronage of local businesses, physical work sessions, and efforts to improve the safety and quality of life right here at home.
- Tommy is a successful business owner and employer. He knows firsthand absolutely everything associated with taking a dollar bill and stretching it to cover a budget. There is no teacher better than that of having the dollars from your own pocket be used to cover payrolls and overhead and expenses of running a business. And make no mistake – the jail, the sheriff’s department, the 911 center are all businesses that have to be managed and paid for and made to operate successfully within the constraints of tight budgets. Tommy is the only person in this race who has the years of experience doing just that. And, he managed to keep his own business successful through the very tough recession times of 2008, 2009, and 2010. That alone makes me to know beyond a shadow of a doubt that Tommy’s financial, budgeting, and business experience are EXACTLY what we need for our community in this very important position of sheriff.
- Tommy has been realistic in his assessment of what may be done to improve the budgeting constraints imposed upon our Sheriff. I have been on committees with Tommy where we were successful in obtaining grants to help with improvement projects. I have no fear that my property taxes will be increased because of overruns at the Sheriff’s Dept. I have no fear that our limited deputy resources will be spent in revenue generating activities such as speed traps. I have every confidence that Tommy will take what is already available, source additions through grants, and work within the budgets our strained economy provides him. He is the only one in this race who for years has proven he can do that through his own business.
I wish to not be that friend who stays silent in my support of Tommy. I do have dear friends who are supporters of Tommy’s opponent, and I respect them for speaking to their own convictions and reasoning’s. I like Tommy’s opponent. He is a nice man with a lovely family and lots of policing experience. I am of the opinion however that, friendship aside, the Big Picture shows that Tommy is the more well-rounded and experienced candidate with years and years of proven investment in our community, possessing the skills embodied in the total package of law enforcement, community service/support, and business experience that we Oglethorpians need and deserve in our Sheriff.
If you have not already made your choice, I respectfully ask that you consider Tommy Wheless when you vote for the next Sheriff of Oglethorpe County.
-Melanee and David McGee