Either Sean Frantom or Grady Smith would make excellent Augusta commissioners for "super" District 10, succeeding the term-limited Don Grantham.
But no other local body has benefited as much from Augusta's burgeoning youth movement as the Augusta Commission. Sean Frantom would be a marvelous extension of that promising change.
We love the 31-year-old's energy, enthusiasm and forward-looking ideas. We think he's in it for the right reasons -- because he wants to serve Augusta and help it improve across the geographic and economic spectrum.
When asked his priorities, he talks first of beefing up security and fighting crime -- not just through the sheriff's department, but also by seeking more accountability throughout the community -- from government department heads to elected officials to ordinary citizens. His call on citizens to take better care of their property is mindful of the "broken window" theory of crime reduction, which holds that if you take care of the little things, the big things improve as well.
He supports giving the city administrator the power to hire and fire department heads, an authority which is sorely lacking: Currently, a department head must run afoul of six of the 10 commissioners to be fired, which gives renegade employees unwarranted political insulation.
Frantom is founding member and president of the Young Professionals of Augusta, a civic club that brings together up-and-coming leaders. It's a significant effort to grow a culture of positivity in the community and to get young leaders communicating with each other. The group has been exposed to a number of distinguished speakers on various topics, and has performed community service projects and hosted charitable events.
He's also a member of the First Saturday cleanup crew that has targeted areas of the city for beautification -- an effort he, and we, would like to see broadened to truly make this the "Garden City" Augusta likes to call itself.
A graduate of Georgia College and State University with a BBA in management, and an executive in the employee staffing business, Frantom's outgoing and upbeat demeanor are still badly needed on an Augusta Commission that has made great strides in recent elections but admittedly had a long way to go from the bad old days of walkouts, votes thwarted by abstentions, and racial division.
We're almost there. A vote for Sean Frantom for Super 10 -- which encompasses commission Districts 3, 6, 7 and 8 -- will be another huge step toward a more united and cohesive Augusta.
Please vote for Sean Frantom for District 10 Augusta commissioner in the Nov. 2 election.