The Macon Water Authority

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MWA unveils bust of the late Frank Amerson

Nov 15, 2013 by Dr. Chris Wood

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Family members of the late Frank C. Amerson, Jr., former Chairman of the MWA, were on hand for the unveiling of his bust at the Authority’s headquarters, where his presence continues to be felt because of more than 35 years of leadership.

More than a year after his death, former Chairman Frank Amerson is referenced often at the Macon Water Authority (MWA), as his presence continues to be felt at the water and sewer utility he helped build. Now Mr. Amerson’s image will be visible as well, as the Authority unveiled a sculpted bust of his likeness during ceremonies on Nov. 7, at its headquarters building on Second Street in downtown Macon.

Frank C. Amerson, Jr. joined the Macon Water Authority in 1976, spending his first six years as an Authority Member prior to serving approximately 30 years as MWA Chairman, the position he held until his death in September of 2012.

“He was a giant in our industry, respected throughout the state of Georgia among water professionals, in addition to being one of the most influential and visionary public officials to have ever served Macon or Bibb County,” says Tony Rojas, Executive Director of the MWA. Amerson’s fellow MWA Board Members noted his business acumen as Chairman of the Authority as well.

“While serving on the board, Frank Amerson tried to steer the Authority to make business decisions, not political decisions,” says Javors Lucas, District 2 MWA Board Member, who served with Amerson 22 years as Vice Chairman of the Authority and more than 30 years total.

“Frank Amerson put his heart and soul into his service on the MWA Board, especially as Chairman,” notes current MWA Vice-Chairman Frank Patterson.

Mr. Amerson was instrumental in securing federal and state funds to rebuild the utility’s water treatment facility following the 1994 flood. He also petitioned the State Legislature to amend the Authority’s Charter to provide it with the autonomy to invest in economic development.

Following a unanimous recommendation by its Engineering Committee this January, the MWA Board passed a resolution at its February meeting allowing the Authority to enter into a Personal Service Agreement with Julie McCraney-Brogdon for the sculpting, casting, and installation of both a life-sized figure and a life-sized bronze bust of Mr. Amerson. While the bust was unveiled at the Albert Billingslea Headquarters Building following the November MWA Board Meeting, the life-sized figure is expected to be completed and installed at the Amerson Water Treatment Facility in the Spring of 2014.

Ms. McCraney-Brogdon is a graduate of Mercer University with a B.A. in Art. She has completed similar busts and life-sized sculptures of prominent figures displayed locally. Her commissioned work includes a bust of Charles Douglass in the lobby of the Douglass Theatre, a bust of former Bibb County Chairman Emery Green in the lobby outside of the Bibb County Commission, and a life-sized figure of Peyton Anderson outside of the Peyton Anderson Community Services Center.

“Because of Frank’s service, leadership and lasting impact on the Authority and our community, we thought it was appropriate to recognize his lifetime of contributions to Macon and Bibb County in this way,” says Dr. Kirby Godsey, MWA Chairman, who was appointed to complete Mr. Amerson’s unexpired term.

With that in mind, Ms. McCraney-Brogdon noted the theme of the unveiling of the Amerson bust, and the inspiration behind her sculptures of him. Since Amerson’s presence at the Authority resulted in many accomplishments – and that much of the utility’s success can be credited to him – this bust at the MWA headquarters assures his presence will always remain, she says.

Media contact:
Chris Wood, Ph.D.
770-757-1681 (phone)
jcwood@uga.edu (email)

Tagged: macon water authority, mwa, macon georgia, mwa capital improvements, frank c amerson, jr, julie mccraneybrogdon

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