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Statements from members of the Atlanta City Council on the passing of Fulton County Commissioner Joan Garner

Post Date:04/19/2017 5:03 PM

News Release

Statements from members of the Atlanta City Council on the passing of Fulton County Commissioner Joan Garner

 ATLANTA – The Atlanta City Council mourns the loss of Fulton County Commissioner Joan P. Garner. Commissioner represented Fulton County Commission District 4, which encompasses the heart of the City of Atlanta, Midtown, and neighborhoods west of downtown Atlanta to Fulton Industrial Boulevard. She is a native of Washington DC. She made Atlanta her home in 1978.

Commissioner Garner was a resident of Atlanta’s historic Old Fourth Ward neighborhood, a community that she deeply cherished, along with her wife, Judge Jane Morrison.

Her involvement in community causes was unwavering. Commissioner Garner was previously President and CEO of the Historic District Development Corporation, a community-based, nonprofit organization that facilitates the preservation and revitalization of the Martin Luther King, Jr. National Historic District and other historic/preservation communities. Commissioner Garner also served as Chair of Neighborhood Planning Unit-M.

The following statements were issued by members of the city council upon her passing:

“My heart is heavy with grief over the passing of Commissioner Joan Garner,” said Atlanta City Councilmember Kwanza Hall, who represents the historic Old Fourth Ward. “My wife Natalie and I have known her for years. Joan and her wife, Fulton County State Court Judge Jane Morrison, have been our neighbors in the King Historic District and they are dear friends. Joan was a pioneer LGBTQ advocate here in our city as well as one of our earliest voices for the rights of people living with HIV/AIDS. She was passionate about the arts and ensured that our city and county governments recognized the value of the arts to local communities. She headed the Historic District Development Corporation and chaired Neighborhood Planning Unit M with steady, seasoned leadership. Joan’s life spanned decades of significant political and social change in our city and nation. She was always one step ahead of the curve, leading by example, daring us to jump with her to a more progressive and compassionate future. I have been so proud to call her my Fulton County Commissioner and I will miss her greatly. My thoughts and prayers are with Jane, their family, and friends.”

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"Atlanta lost one our finest public leaders today. Joan's civic passions were reflected brightly through her work on the Fulton County Commissioner and her decades of community service leading up to that,” said Atlanta City Councilmember Alex Wan. “She was a role model, an inspiring colleague, and a dear friend that will be deeply missed. Our thoughts are with her wife Jane, family, and friends during this difficult time."

“My heart is heavy with the loss of my elected official Fulton County Commissioner Joan Garner,” said Atlanta City Councilmember Cleta Winslow. “She and I worked together on a number of constituent related issues because her district overlapped with mine. Whenever I reached out to her for assistance regarding a constituent concern, she was always there to provide whatever needed service was available from Fulton County government. She helped to make needed improvements to the West End and Mechanicsville Libraries. She also provided outstanding healthcare related services to her constituents. She will be missed in so many ways. My prayers go out to her family and to her loved ones.”

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“I am saddened to hear of the passing of Commissioner Joan Garner.  Her unprecedented service to Fulton County and the City of Atlanta will never be forgotten,” said Atlanta City Councilmember ivory Lee Young, Jr.  “I want to express my deepest sympathy to her family, friends, constituents, and colleagues mourning her loss. I join them in remembering her beautiful spirit and smile.”

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“I respect Ms. Garner for her commitment and dedication as she served her constituents. We will greatly miss her wisdom and her warmth and kindness,” said Atlanta City Councilmember C.T. Martin. She possessed an unwavering commitment to causes that she held dear and that is what made her a great public servant. We know that she is going on to heaven and be in the rightful place that God has selected for his angels.”

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“Commissioner Joan Garner was a great public servant who cared deeply about the community and the residents really enjoyed having her as their representative. She will be sincerely missed,” Atlanta City Councilmember Felicia A. Moore

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“Commissioner Garner was a good friend to many in and outside the district, her dedication and commitment to service was unmatched. She will be truly missed and remembered for her genuine loved for those she served,” said Atlanta City Councilmember Carla Smith

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“It is with a heavy heart that I express my sincere condolences on the passing of Fulton County Commission Vice Chair Joan Garner. Commissioner Garner had a kind heart and a genuine spirit. That positivity was evident in her role as Vice Chair of the Commission, as she built good will and treated everyone with respect,” said Atlanta City Council President Ceasar Mitchell. “Her record of building healthier communities, supporting women in public service, and advocating for LGBT rights will continue to inspire the next generation of leaders. Through it all, Joan remained courageous and full of grace. My prayers are with her family. She will be truly missed.” said President Ceasar Mitchell

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“It is with profound sadness that I express my sincere condolences to the family, friends and love ones of Fulton County District 4 Commissioner Joan Garner. Joan was a true inspiration to so many; her passing leaves a huge void in the lives of the countless ones who knew her personally. Joan was extremely instrumental in passing legislation and acquiring support for the Arts and LGBTQ issues.  Joan supported many emerging initiatives in her district and leaves a legacy of passionate service to the community. Her dedication and motivation will be missed.”  – Joyce Sheperd Atlanta City Council District - 12

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