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Posted: July 27, 2013 4:24 p.m.

Letters: Leaders had vision

I read with great interest Dick Yarbrough’s comments re Carl Sanders being the right governor at the right time.

This was the time period in which I located the C.R. Bard plant in Covington. (1967).

In addition to the efforts of Gov. Sanders and his "Red Carpet" tours for interested industrial relocations and, in concert with the Masters Golf Tournament tickets, we were very fortunate to have progressive-minded citizens in Covington who presented a very favorable environment for companies like C.R. Bard.

As I recall. Mayor Walker Harris, County Commissioner Chairman Jack Morgan, The Pratts and others, whom I fail to mention only because the passage of time has dimmed my memory, contributed immeasurably to the progress of Newton County as a forward-thinking community where you could not only live, but find a good job to support a better living standard.

There have been some gratifications to me, personally, recently. As I was exiting the voting area, I was approached by a gray-haired beautiful lady who introduced herself because she was sure I would not recognize her. It was Ms. Malcolm, whom I hired at Bard a long time ago. She wanted to thank me for the opportunity she discovered at Bard. She remarked that that opportunity encouraged her to seek further education and she became confident in her abilities to provide a better living for her family. The environment thus created finally culminated in the decision of Baxter (International) to locate in this area, which fulfilled my vision of this area becoming a center for biomedical research as well as medical manufacturing facilities. The area has vast potential, as it is convenient to three educational facilities: Emory, Georgia Tech and the University of Georgia, which we had then, and now Perimeter (Georgia Perimeter College) and a host of accessible higher-education opportunities.

The Baxter location, I think, will mark a watershed of opportunities for local citizens, which will prove to be of historical proportions. It will bring many forward-thinking medical researchers to the area, which will require technically trained people as support.

As these support people grow in their competence, they will encourage and help develop even more, younger kids to aspire to contribute to the advancement of medical research and improvement of the human race.

We owe much to the local citizens who were not content to just exist, but to be curious, industrious, and motivated to improve and energize the community to action.

Norbert Thompson

Oxford

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