Mort Ewing has been an advocate for serving the community and others to best of his ability.
The District 1 County Commissioner said goodbye after 12 years of service as a county commissioner and said he has seen many accomplishments from the county during his years on the board.
During an interview, he eagerly listed several improvements that have made the county a better place to live in and would help the generations to come.
Over the years as a commissioner, Ewing's vote has helped approve a great deal of projects. He said he has helped approve included a new water supply line from Alcovy River to Lake Varner; an increased the water treatment capacity to 25 million gallons a day; continuously approved resolutions in moving forward with plans for the Bear Creek Reservoir, which he said would give the county a reliable water supply for years to come; built several new parks and recreational facilities; built a new county administrative facility; and improved numerous roads by adding traffic signals, creating turn lanes and resurfacing dirt roads to paved roads.
"All those things are important to the people who live here," Ewing said.
Before Ewing was a commissioner helping to approve projects that would help better Newton County, he spent the majority of his life as a farmer. He said he's a sixth generation family farmer of T.M. Ewing Farm, which produces beef cattle, hay and timber.
He graduated from Newton County High School and as a high school student, he served as the president of the local chapter of the Future Farmer's of America. He listed off several other organizations dedicated to farmers that he served on before getting involved in politics.
"I've helped organize a number of farm groups and served in various capacities in farm groups," Ewing said. "Back in the mid-50s, I helped organize the Georgia Milk Producers Association, it's still active and functioning today on behalf of the Dairy Farmers in Georgia. I helped organize and serve on the original board of directors of the Georgia Young Farmers Association. I volunteered 41 years in the Farm Bureau and I'm still a member," he said.
Ewing added that he has served as a board member and as the vice president of the Newton County Farm Bureau and he has served six years as the state president and chief executive officer of the state Farm Bureau. Ewing said he was also elected the vice president of the American Farm Bureau Federation, which is a 4 million member farm group based in Washington, D.C.
"I could name all afternoon, but that's probably enough," he joked.
Ewing first became interested in politics in the 11th grade. He said he never had a desire to be elected to any kind of office and that he just helped his classmates get elected to student council.
"When I finished school, I became interested in county politics and state politics. During my lifetime, I've managed multiple campaigns and worked very actively in several elections for the governors Sonny Perdue and Nathan Deal, and members of the Georgia General Assembly," Ewing said.
"I managed the Newton County campaign for senator Saxby Chambliss and numerous other local campaigns that I have been involved with through the years. I've either managed those campaigns or served on the committees of a group of people who helped the candidate manage the campaign.
"It's very, very important to have qualified people to serve in elected positions and again that's been my goal is to seek out those qualified people and then help them get elected," Ewing said.
With volunteering and serving the community in his heart, Ewing said his involvement in the community has just been his way of giving back. He said he will miss working with the board of commissioners, the people in the county and all of the volunteers who help to run the county.
"The community of Newton County and the state of Georgia has been good to me and my family," Ewing said. "I'll miss working with the people. I really enjoyed working with the various board members and staff and those people who provide services for the county."
"It takes a lot of people to run a county with 100,000 people and as a commissioner, you develop relationships with those people and I really cherish all of those relationships."
He said he has always been a team player as a commissioner and gave words of advice to future commissioners who will serve on the board.
"It does take a lot of dedication and a lot of time. You must be willing to dedicate the necessary time and effort to meet the needs of the constituents," Ewing said.
Ewing said he will continue to work as an insurance salesman at Jones, Ewing, Dobbs and Tamplin, where he has worked for the last 13 years and run his family farm. He said he is also looking forward to spending more time with his wife Faye, and his two sons Ben and John.