Tag Archives: Fulton County Attorney

Would You Act Like That in Front of Your Grandmother?

O.V. Brantley and Mayor Chuck Shaheen with "Martin's Dream"

Yesterday, I presented Would You Act Like That in Front of Your Grandmother?  at the Warner Robins City Council retreat. My presentation focuses on the importance of Council/Staff relations and illustrates my points through quilts.

I am a huge proponent of civility and professionalism in the work place. Often in political environments people forget the basics of good manners, or they decide that good manners are not necessary in the rough and tumble world of politics.

While I was Fulton County Attorney, one of my quilts hung in each conference room. I observed that quilts seemed to have a calming effect on people as they reminisced about their grandmother’s quilts. That is how I came up with the title of the presentation.

Whether my audience agrees with me or not, they always love the quilts.

A Special Note to Law Moms

My daughter India is 20 years old today and a sophomore at the University of Pittsburgh. She is a happy, well adjusted young woman. That is the end of the story.

When I was appointed Fulton County Attorney, she was in the second grade. When she tells her life story, she  says without fail, “I was always the last one to be picked up from after school” seemingly trying to convey that she was scarred for life.

It is true. She often was the last one picked up from after school, and sometimes she was picked up by strangers. (Not really, but I had a lot of people on the authorized pick up list). We were fortunate that the after school teacher was very understanding, and she never penalized me for being on “working Mom” time when I was late.

I can’t lie. There were many days I worried that India would be scarred for life as I struggled with career and motherhood. I am sure you worry too.

Well, stop worrying! Kids are stronger than you think. Your kids will be fine, and deep down, they will be proud of your accomplishments!

Happy Birthday, India!

Teresa Roseborough Named Home Depot General Counsel

Teresa Wynn Roseborough

Home Depot has named Teresa Wynn Roseborough as its new General Counsel. Teresa was most recently Deputy General Counsel at Metlife. Before that she was a partner for many years at Sutherland Asbill & Brennan. Teresa will start her new duties November 7, 2011.

Home Depot is the world’s largest retailer. Having worked with Teresa on several matters during my tenure as the Fulton County Attorney, I know that she is more than up to the task.

Congrats, Teresa!

East Point City Council Training

Recently I was honored to be asked by City Attorney Nina Hickson and City Manager Crandall Jones to make a presentation to the East Point City Council during its annual retreat. I spoke to the Council on the topic of Council / Staff relations. I titled my paper Would You Act Like That In Front of Your Grandmother?! (How Good Council/Staff Relations Can Minimize Public Risk and Improve Public Image).

I illustrated my presentation  with quilts to show that each person is part of a bigger picture. Shown here is my quilt Fulton County Attorneys which is a signature quilt made during my tenure as the Fulton County Attorney. Each staff member signed a block in the quilt.

Sharpening My Mediation Skills Through the Tax Appeal Process

It’s tax time! Metro counties, including Fulton, are sending out thousands of assessment notices to homeowners. If homeowners are unhappy with their assessment, they can appeal. Because of a change in the law requiring counties to assess property annually, everyone will get a notice this year. Tax officials are bracing for an unusually large number of appeals.

At the request of Fulton County Attorney David Ware, I will be handling some of these appeals on behalf of the Fulton County Board of Tax Assessors. Most of the Fulton Superior Court Judges assign their tax appeal cases to the Fulton County Office of Alternative Dispute Resolution before placing them on a trial calendar. I am looking forward to participating in the mediation process from the other side of the table.

Interim Hall County Attorney

Since February I have had the distinct pleasure of serving the citizens of Hall County Georgia as Interim County Attorney through a unique arrangement with the law firm of  Holland & Knight.  The Board of Commissioners will select a law firm to serve as the permanent county attorney in the near future.

Serving as the Fulton County Attorney, the largest county in Georgia, for over 8 years certainly prepared me for the task. However, each county is unique in size, issues and politics. I have learned a lot and enjoyed the journey. Hopefully, each experience makes me a better mediator.

The Board of Commissioners meet the second and fourth Thursdays of each month at the Georgia Mountain Center. The meetings are televised.

Make a Difference

Fulton County Attorney Stars by O.V. Brantley

Last week we celebrated the life and accomplishments of a great man — Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. We were reminded that the best way to honor him is to serve others.

Dedicating your life to the service of others is hard. After all, as someone said on my twitter feed, it is easy to make a pay check, but can you make a difference?
 
A total dedication to the service of others is too much for most of us, (I could never imagine doing what Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. did.) but there are as many ways to serve as there are talented people in the world. 
 
Service can be big — saving a life, curing cancer, changing a nation, for instance. Service can be small — ushering at your neighborhood theatre, tutoring a student, donating blood to the Red Cross. Whether big or small, service can make a huge difference in another person’s life. The side benefit is that it sets you on a path to receive even more than you gave.
 
The quilt featured here is called Fulton County Attorney Stars. This is one of several quilts I made to honor the incredible lawyers in the Fulton County Attorney’s office. (Each staff member signed a block in the quilt).

It’s easy to make a pay check, but can you make a difference?
  

In Memory of Chief Louis Graham

Chief Louis Graham

When I was appointed the Fulton County Attorney in 1999,  Louis Graham was the police chief. In fact, he was Fulton County’s first African American police chief.  He died recently, and his life was celebrated last Saturday at Jackson Memorial Baptist Church.

Chief Graham retired from Fulton County a short time later, so we did not get to work together a long time. However,  he was always professional, and I enjoyed the time we served Fulton County together. My fondest memories of Chief Graham, however,  are the discussions we had when I ran into him at Mitchell Brothers Barber and Beauty Shop on Fairburn Road. There is nothing like a barber shop for some frank talk and laughter.

I extend my deepest sympathies to his family. He was truly a public servant and will be missed by many.

Will Litigate For Food

Will Litigate For Food by O.V. Brantley, 2006.

Writing about power lunches made me think of my quilt Will Litigate for Food. Hopefully your marketing or lack thereof has not reduced you to litigating for food.

This quilt is a signature quilt signed by the staff of the Fulton County Attorney’s Office. As with all my signature quilts, it is a lot of fun to read the creative messages left by the staff.

Will Litigate For Food was featured in a quilt exhibit held at the Art Station in Stone Mountain, GA. Unfortunately, the picture does not do justice to this beautiful quilt.

Win is What We Do

Win is What We Do by O.V. Brantley, 2007.

I always tried to instill in my staff that it is possible to win without being angry, to win while having fun, and to win while having balance in your life.

Win is What We Do was the last signature quilt I made for my staff at the Fulton County Attorney’s Office. Each staff member signed a block.

This quilt is part of my personal collection of heirloom quilts. It serves as a reminder that winning with joy is far better than winning wth anger.

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