New Local Officials Sworn In Before Standing Room Only Crowd

The Inaugural Ceremony for The Town of Jonesboro elected officials was held Thursday Night at the Charles H. Garrett Community Center as a “standing room only” crowd of citizens, elected officials from Jonesboro and the surrounding area and Representative Jack McFarland welcomed the new regime into office.

The oath of Office was administered by Mrs. Laura Culpepper, Jackson Parish Clerk of court. Breaking from tradition, town council members James W. Ginn, Robbie Siadek, and Nia Evans Johnson received their oath in unison as a show of solidarity in working together. Alderman Devin R. Flowers and Robert Hunter were not in attendance.

Jonesboro Mayor-Elect James Harris and Police Chief-Elect Israel Smith were next to be sworn in followed by Harris addressing the crowd.

“I want to thank you for coming and supporting me in this election,” said Harris, who moves into the Mayor’s Office after serving as Police Chief. “I pledge to take full responsibility for the affairs of the Mayor’s Office after the new year and current ongoing audit and you will never hear me blame anything on the previous administration. The Buck Stops Here.”

The gala event was opened by Rev. Brian McCallister, Pastor First Baptist Church, giving the invocation followed by the National Anthem being sung by Diamond Garnett Taylor & Lashonda Harris. Randy Layfield treated the crowd to God Bless the USA and a Unity Prayer was given by Pastor Reginald Staten of Pleasant Grove Missionary Baptist Church. The session ended with a Benediction by Rev. Artez Jones.

Everyone enjoyed gumbo, baked chicken and red beans and rice catered by Odom’s Kitchen out of Baton Rouge, and homemade cookies by Cakes and More. During the fellowship, Knight & Day Entertainment provided soothing music.

Special thanks go to the local businesses of Jonesboro that supported the event by providing funding.

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