Keep up the Franklin spirit, Jim

Published 9:01 am Saturday, July 7, 2012

To the Editor:

I read the nice editorial pertaining to Jim Councill and his contributions to Franklin. (“Thank you, Jim Councill,” Friday June 29) I would like to share some experiences I had with Jim and his love for Franklin.

When I was the economic development director for Franklin and Southampton in the late 1980s and 1990s, Jim always played a positive role in our attempts to attract industries and retail to Franklin. When he became mayor, he was instrumental in helping us attract Crestale, the UC Converting Plant, and WM Tinder industries to the city. There were other industries that came very close to locating in Franklin and it was often out-of-state incentives that killed the deals. But Jim never lost his enthusiasm. I remember many companies expressing to me how impressed they were with our mayor and his enthusiastic and professional demeanor.

I was also impressed with Jim’s ideas and recommendations, which were what he thought was best for Franklin, but often put him on the opposite side of self-interest groups who had their own personal agendas. But Jim kept his convictions despite the criticism.

I have observed local politics in a number of communities in Virginia and North Carolina and I have never observed an individual who had as much conviction and dedication for their community as Jim Councill has for Franklin.

I hope he will continue to promote Franklin as he once did years ago before he became mayor. I hope the citizens of Franklin appreciate what Jim has done for them in the past and encourage him to continue his efforts to support Franklin in the future.

Keep up the Franklin spirit, Jim, and may God bless you in the future.

Jim Bradshaw
Bolivia, N.C.