By Crystal McGough
For The Tribune
The Clay City Council unanimously passed a proclamation honoring former Center Point Fire Chief Donnie West at the regular council meeting Tuesday night.
West retired from his position as fire chief this month after serving in the position since 2011.
”Last night was the swearing in of Gene Coleman as the new chief,” City Manager Ronnie Dixon said. “So that was effective immediately and Don is now the 911 director and Howard Summerford (former Jefferson County E-911 Director) is officially retired from all of his duties.”
According to Proclamation 2018-05, West has been employed at the CPFD since 1977 and has won several awards including the Alabama Association of Fire Chiefs’ Fire Chief of the Year award and the Medic Alert Foundation Award for Excellence in Fire Service-Based EMS from the U.S. Congress.
The Center Point Fire District was also awarded an ISO 1/1x Classification, the highest classification possible from the Insurance Services Office, under West’s leadership.
“Chief West has done so many things, I feel like we should have two proclamations,” Councilor Bo Johnson said.
Mayor Charles Webster said that he received a letter from Jefferson County Board of Education CFO Sheila Jones with an updated list for the city’s school grant money.
“This is for the year of 17-18,” Webster said. “They have spent $11, 806 and rolled over $3, 863, so they will have that in their 2018-19 fund. They sent us a graph and a list of everybody that used their money and what they used it for. They do a great job in keeping up with what we ask them to do, so I appreciate them doing that.”
Councilor Dennis Locke announced the $500 School Grant winners for the month of October.
The winner for Clay Elementary School was second-year teacher Michelle Williams, who plans to use the funds to purchase books, Chromebooks and educational games for her classroom.
Exceptional Education teacher Kay Mickel won the grant for Clay-Chalkville Middle School. She plans to use her funds to purchase sensory equipment for her classroom.
For Clay-Chalkville High School, the winner was Physical Education teacher Natasha Brown. While Brown submitted the application, the funds will be used to purchase resources to benefit all five of the school’s physical education teachers, including DuraHoops, foam balls, Velcro catch, shuttle birdies and more.
“Congratulations to our school teacher winners,” Locke said.
In other city news, the dates for two upcoming holiday events were announced during the pre-council meeting. The annual Christmas tree lighting ceremony at Cosby Lake will be Nov. 25 at 5:30 p.m. and the Clay Christmas Parade will be Dec. 8 at 3 p.m.
The next Clay City Council meeting will be held on Tuesday, Nov. 27, at 6:30 p.m., immediately following a pre-council meeting at 6 p.m.