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Brookhaven Mayor J. Max Davis juggles roles as mayor, attorney
by Nicole Dow
January 16, 2013 09:39 AM | 1647 views | 0 0 comments | 11 11 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Staff / Samantha M. Shal<br>
Brookhaven Mayor J. Max Davis goes over a few items at his law office before heading out to Brookhaven City Hall.
Staff / Samantha M. Shal
Brookhaven Mayor J. Max Davis goes over a few items at his law office before heading out to Brookhaven City Hall.
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Without even a computer at his desk and renovations still ongoing at the newly-leased Brookhaven City Hall space, Mayor J. Max Davis — an attorney by profession — has jumped right in to his role as city leader, all while also running a law firm.

“It’s tough right now,” he said.

When the Brookhaven Neighbor checked in on him Jan. 8, he had split up his day between working at his law firm in the morning and at city hall in the afternoon, all before attending the first city council meeting of the year.

Davis said his role as mayor is supposed to be part-time, but in these early weeks into cityhood, the work has been closer to full-time. That will change eventually. As the city was chartered, Brookhaven is essentially a city manager-led municipality, he said.

“These people know what they’re doing,” Davis commented on the work of the city manager, city attorney and staff. “They don’t need the mayor and city council here all the time looking over their shoulders.”

In the afternoon leading up to the city council meeting, Davis met with acting City Manager Marie Garrett and acting City Attorney Bill Riley to discuss the meeting’s agenda. The mayor scribbled notes on his copy and made intermittent comments as they went through what would be brought before council that night.

“Are we going to make allowances for golf carts?” Davis asked the two when the topic of approving an ordinance for motor vehicles and traffic was brought up.

Riley explained the ordinance was laid out exactly like it had been from DeKalb County. Davis mentioned he would want to address an allowance for golf carts at some point in the future.

While Garrett was briefing Davis on the status of the city manager search, the mayor asked her opinion of a recent resume that had come across her desk. She said it looked good, but Davis interpreted a semi-second hesitation and the intonation in her voice to mean otherwise and pointed it out.

“I’m looking for a blockbuster for you, Mr. Mayor,” Garrett said of her lack of enthusiasm for the candidate.

Davis can appreciate good team members in his rank who want the best for Brookhaven. During the council meeting, he thanked the new department heads and staff for all their work getting the city up and running. He could hardly hold in his excitement when announcing Susan Hiott as his recommendation for city clerk. Starting a city with a good city clerk is important, he said.
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