Von Jennings: Alexandria needs effective leadership to move forward

By Sherri L. Jackson
The Light/EverythingCenla

It’s no secret that Von Jennings is seeking to take Mayor Jacques Roy’s seat in October.

And she said she plans to do so by proving that she has the necessary leadership skills to get the job done.

“We need effective leadership that listens to the will of the people,” Jennings told The Light in a one-on-one interview. “The city needs leaders who will develop plans of action and follow through with input from residents. Many have the technical skills to do the job, but lacks leadership skills needed to move the city forward.”

“A good leader has goals to accomplish, and the behavior is based on those goals,” she said.

Though mulling over the decision whether or not to seek the city’s highest office since November 2009, after careful consideration and several conversations with community and business organizations, Jennings officially made her intentions known Tuesday, March 30, when she opened her campaign headquarters at 1012 Third St., across from Alexandria City Hall.

About 40 people attended the event to hear Jennings’ announcement. She is the first to officially announce candidacy.

Jennings said she hopes to bring to her native city the type of leadership she believes is lacking in Alexandria City Hall.

“We need leadership that is open to collaboration with others. I’m positive we can do a better job,” she said. “I have the ability to partner, to collaborate and the willingness to listen the move on and to develop plans of action that can be implemented.”

Jennings worked as an assistant to Mayor Jacques Roy in charge of the city’s AFEAT, which stands for Alexandria Fairness, Equality, Accessibility and Teamwork, a business program which was designed to bring in help minority and emerging business do business with the city. She was terminated in January 2009.

Jennings is a 1991 graduate of Peabody Magnet High School. She has bachelor’s degrees in political science and public administration from Grambling State University and a master’s degree in public administration from Southern University. Currently, she is pursuing a doctorate in public policy.

“I want everyone to appreciate that I am a candidate who will represent all of the citizens of Alexandria. I am willing to work with everyone. We have to understand that there are more issues that we have in common than those that are different,” she said.”

Jennings said she sees the city’s priorities as conservative financial planning, aggressive

economic development, work force development, youth development, drainage and flooding,

affordable utilities and infrastructure projects that will promote economic viability.

“The immediate needs are to have definite financial plans. The city is looking at a deficit. We need more revenue streams,” she said.

Meanwhile, Jennings said the city in its current state needs her leadership skills, which along with experience, make her the “excellent choice” to be the city’s leader.

“Much of my experience and skills are directly tied to those serving as mayor of any leader in a corporation,” she said.

Jennings said as she operates a grassroots campaign she looks forward to meeting all citizens “at their door.”

Former Peabody Warhorse drum major to lead SU’s band at Bayou Classic

Read more here: Nov. 15, 1-8

Pineville resident and banker Willie Spears to be inducted into Grambling’s Hall of Fame


GRAMBLING- Willie Spears of Pineville is one of 16 Grambling State University alumni who will be inducted into the GSU Alumni Hall of Fame during the annual homecoming weekend celebration. The reception, banquet and induction ceremony will be Oct. 17 at 5:30 p.m. in the university assembly center.

The honorees represent the university’s academic colleges and athletics. Other honorees are:

This year’s inductees include the following distinct graduates:

Bettye J. Davis-Professional Studies
Thomas Harvey-College of Education
Dr. Willie L. Hill, Jr.-College of Education
Fred Irby, III-College of Education
Fred Marsh-College of Business
Ira Wayne McConnell-College of Business
Betty Jean S. White-College of Education
Dr. Neari F. Warner-College of Education
Dr. Allen Williams-College of Arts and Sciences
Dr. Leon Whitaker-College of Education
Patricia C. Bibbs-Athletics
Lee Fobbs-Athletics
Aaron James-Athletics
Michael Lyons-Athletics
Benjamin Williams-Athletics

Noted journalist, entreprenur, philanthropist and talk show host, Tom Joyner will be the keynote speaker at the semi-formal annual event. Tickets are $85.00 each, $165.00 couple, non-profit group/organization (table of 8) $655.00 and corporate (table of 8) $ 1200.

For further information, contact the Division of Institutional Advancement at (318) 274-6265 or (318) 274-2217.

Young drummers

About 25 youth, ages 6 to 17, are participating in a five-day percussionist camp that teaches everything from discipline to cadence.

The camp, HEROES Arts Camp, is an intense week of learning and fun activities designed to to give students the skills to discover and/or enhance their art skills.

HEROES is a nonprofit organization based in Columbia, La. The camp is being held at the Wesley Center, south of Alexandria, LA.

Bayou Classic brings family, friends and memories together

Kevin W. Brown at Grambling State University graduationEugene Sutherland at Southern University graduation

Many people will head down to New Orleans for the annual Bayou Classic. The Bayou Classic is one of the biggest happenings among historically black colleges. In this case, it’s the annual football game between Southern University and Grambling State Unniversity.

Though the football game is the biggest event of the weekend, it’s not the only event. There’s plenty to do for the entire family.

Grambling and Southern reach the entire world as their graduates touch every facet of society.

In the Nov. 15-31 issue of The Light, read how these two schools have touched the lives of two of its gradutes. nov-15-31-the-light.pdf