On Wednesday, October 2, an announcement was made on "Ask Elaine", a weekly public affairs show that airs every Wednesday on Macon's 100.5 FM, 'The Light'.
A group of local ministers and community leaders had convened at the New Pilgrim Missionary Baptist Church led by the Reverend Curtis Raines to discuss the future of Macon-Bibb and which candidates in the special election runoff should be endorsed.
For mayor, the group had endorsed C. Jack Ellis.
Ellis ran for mayor in 1999, and was elected as the first African-American to hold the position. After a successful first term, he was re-elected in 2003 after defeating several challengers in the Democratic primary and write-in opposition in the general election.
Ellis's administration was responsible for approximately $1 million in loans to disadvantaged businesses during his tenure in office.
Some of Ellis' other accomplishments include:
* Built more new houses than any Mayor in Macon’s history
* Received $20 million Hope VI Grant for redevelopment of Oglethorpe Homes
* Demolished or renovated over 2000 sub-standard houses
* Reduced overall crime from an all-time high
* Built new $37 million Marriott Convention Center Hotel
* Increased minority participation in contracts for goods and services with city government
Other endorsements include the following Macon-Bibb Commission races:
For District 2. the group had endorsed Henry Ficklin over challenger Larry Scheslinger.
District 2 stretches into neighborhoods east of Gray Highway that includes streets such as Fort Hill, Maynard, Woolfolk and Hall Streets and are in the same district as North Macon neighborhoods that include River North, Woodland Drive, Briarcliff Rd, HIckory Ridge Drive and Tiffin Circle.
For District 6, the group had endorsed Adah Roberts over long-time Macon City Councilman Ed Defore.
Roberts had worked as an administrator in the City of Macon's Finance Department for seven years during Jack Ellis' two-term tenure as Mayor of Macon.
Some of the main areas of District 6 are the following: Lake Tobesofkee, Knoxville Rd., Columbus Rd., Thomaston Rd., Heath Rd, Bethel Church Road, Hopewell Rd., Lower Thomaston Rd., and Rogers Rd.
For District 8, the group endorsed Virgil Watkins, Jr. over Charles Jones
Watkins, 28, was first elected to the Macon City Council back in November 2007 for Ward 4 Post 3 and is currently the youngest person on Macon City Council.
Watkins cites minority participation with city contracts and believes more has to be done to improve the procurement process for racial minorities and women.
District 8 is a majority-black, Democrat-leaning precinct that encompasses areas south of Eisenhower Parkway, neighborhoods that surround Southwest High School and Jessie Rice Elementary.