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Planning Commission chair Shepperd looks at BOC bid
Jerry Shepperd

Jerry Shepperd, business owner and chairman of the Conyers-Rockdale Planning Commission, announced he is exploring a possible bid for Rockdale County Commissioner Post 2 Democratic nomination.

Shepperd, a Conyers native, is president/CEO of Lifetime Travel & Cruises and Conyers Cleaning Inc. and is also co-founder of Unity in Christ Church International Ministries.

"I would consider it a privilege having the opportunity to serve the citizens of Rockdale County," said Shepperd in a statement.

He said he is in the exploratory stage but he's seen only positive reactions. "From the last few months, I've had several prominent people from the community ask me," said Shepperd. "That helps a lot when you have people that know you've worked hard in the community and they trust you."

He has served on the Conyers-Rockdale Planning Commission after being appointed last year and was recently chosen to be Chair of the Planning Commission board, a volunteer body that reviews and issues recommendation on construction, developments and zoning changes in the city or county.

Shepperd also previously served on the advisory board of Keep Conyers Rockdale Beautiful and said he desires to see Rockdale "striving in exceptional quality at all times by keeping the properties clean and beautiful.

"Being a citizen of Rockdale, I see the challenges that we face each day, and by the grace of God, who gives me strength, I can help make our county a more attractive place to live and work."

Shepperd said he has experience in job creation having been a small business owner since 1998 when he started Lifetime Travel and later Conyers Cleaning, Inc. for commercial properties.

"I am very passionate about the citizens of Rockdale County," said Shepperd. "I want to be a catalyst in maintaining our quality of life here in Rockdale County."

He attended Georgia Perimeter College and holds a certificate from the University of Georgia. As a trainee in IBM, he began his career as a travel agent with Macy's (formerly Rich's), where he became a Department Manager. He served as a board member of the A.R. Barksdale Boys and Girls Club in Conyers and on the Advisory Council Board for Keep Conyers Rockdale Beautiful.

Shepperd was also licensed and ordained as a minister in 2007 at Lifeline Bible Church in Eatonton, Ga. He ministers frequently at the Westbury Nursing Home and home-based minitry Unity in Christ Church International Ministries.

Shepperd and his wife, Maudie, a bank executive in Conyers, raised three daughters in Rockdale; one is deceased, one attended the University of Georgia and has a masters degree and one has a PhD from Georgia Tech.

Shepperd previously ran for Commissioner Post 1 in 2011 and lost in the Democratic primary against incumbent Commissioner Oz Nesbitt.

Dr. Doreen Williams, current chair of the Rockdale Democratic Party, earlier announced she was running for the Democratic nomination for Post 2 Commission seat.

Josie Dean earlier also announced she is running for the Democratic nomination for the BOC Post 2 seat.

Incumbent Post 2 Commissioner JaNice Van Ness earlier confirmed she is running for the Republican nomination for her third term as Commissioner.

The candidate qualifying period for state and local elections has been moved up this year due to earlier federal election schedules.

The qualifying period for local, state and federal candidates is March 3-7.

The partisan primaries and non-partsan election date is May 20 this year for local, state and federal elections.

In Rockdale's local elections, the Board of Commissioners Post 2 seat primary for the Democratic and Republican nominations will be on May 20. The general election for the commission seat will be in November.

The election for Rockdale's non-partisan Board of Education Post 2 and Post 1 seats will be on May 20. Both incumbents, Katrina McCollum Young and school board chair Jim McBrayer, have announced they're running for re-election.

All the partisan State House of Representative and State Senate seats are up for election this year.

The U.S. Congressional Fourth District seat, currently held by three-time incumbent Congressman Hank Johnson, is also up for election this year.