Remembering Geoffrey Redd
Yesterday I attended the funeral of Geoffrey “Bernard” Redd, who died as a result of being critically wounded in the line of duty. In addition to serving 15 years with MPD, Officer Redd was a U.S. Marine and an ordained minister. He was also a father, a son, a brother, and a newlywed. Memphis has suffered a giant loss with his passing.
At this funeral, I could not help but notice the absence of the U.S. Vice President, federal lawmakers, media personalities, and national media crews who visited Memphis last month. No out of state activists arrived to mourn his loss.
That is truly shameful, and it speaks to the larger problem we have as a society.
On Saturday, I joined Commissioner Charlie Caswell, Mayor Lee Harris, Sheriff Floyd Bonner and many others for an event hosted by the Public Safety Ad Hoc committee at Holy Nation Church of Memphis, which neighbors the Bartlett area.
One goal of the event was to kick off the formation of public safety focused networks within each commission district, using Caswell’s “7Ps” model, which brings together parents, pastors, police, principals, politicians, proprietors and partners.
To my mind, this idea is akin to a neighborhood watch but on a larger scale. I like the approach because it’s going to take all of us working together to adequately address our crime problem in Memphis and Shelby County.
I am pleased by the recent passage of a resolution I sponsored in support of the Lakeland Gateway development, which is expected to result in a private investment of more than $200 million, along with 900 permanent jobs and 1,800 construction jobs.
Lakeland City officials were on hand for our commission meeting last week to give a presentation on the project and what it means for our area of the county.
You can read more about this development in an article by the Daily Memphian.
There was no shortage of controversy in county government this month, as commissioners clashed over several headline issues: how to deal with an unresponsive County Clerk, a budget amendment to put $5 million towards a “reparations” plan, as well as ongoing efforts to enact police reform.
The board’s partisan divide is evident in these areas. My Republican colleagues and I are doing our best to advance reasoned arguments, to stand up for a better way, and to at least make our voices heard even if we are vastly outnumbered.
I was recently invited to speak about some of these issues with the Nation of Jake radio program. You can listen to the podcast recording on Spotify or search for the 2/23 episode on your favorite audio app.
For the last 20 years, I have worked for Youth Villages, and when the county commission is not in session I’m on the job with that non-profit organization, most recently as part of the new Memphis Allies initiative, which is focused on community violence reduction.
I bring this up to share that public safety efforts are my entire focus, every day.
The Daily Memphian has started a four-part series of articles on how Memphis Allies is working to reach the people who are at the highest risk of violence and guide them to a safer way of living. Subscribers can read the first two entries here and here.
Upcoming public meetings
March 3 – Special called meeting (Black History Month recognition), 3 p.m.
March 4 – FY24 Budget Retreat, 8:00 a.m.
March 8 – Standing committees, 8:30 a.m.
March 20 – Commission meeting, 3 p.m.
March 29 – Standing committees, 8:30 a.m.
Stay in touch
If you have a question or concern, email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
You can speak with the Commission office by calling 901-222-1000.
I always welcome your feedback on Facebook (@CommissionerMickWright) and Twitter (@mickwright).
Thanks for reading.
Shelby County Commission – District 3