For generations, Talladega has been my family’s home, both maternal and paternal. And raising my children here has ensured our legacy in Talladega will continue for another generation. I am proud to call Talladega home and love our community deeply. And like so many of you, I’m troubled by the direction we’re moving in.

It has been difficult to watch and read about the dissolution of our governing bodies. A troublesome display of egos and stubbornness by those put in leadership positions to serve the people. 

During concluding comments at the Aug. 12 Talladega City Council meeting, the morale of the people of Talladega was described as “high” right now. But I would beg to differ. This energy that is washing over the city is less about morale, and more about determined residents taking matters into their own hands. 

Yes, there are many great things happening in Talladega. Yet, most of it has been driven by dedicated community members who see the potential in our city, and have the faith to give back. Thus, the large candidate pool in this year’s municipal elections.

As we count down the days until we cast our ballots for City Council, mayor, and School Board, even more people are considering the direction they want the city to take, and reflecting on where we have been. Many were surprised that my name would not be on their ballot, and while I am not a candidate, my commitment to Talladega is the same.

I encourage everyone to get familiar with the candidates running for office and cast their ballot on Aug. 27. For those who work 10-plus-hour shifts or are otherwise unavailable to vote on that day, consider voting absentee or taking part in the in-person absentee voting challenge, #AlabamaVotesEarly. 

Talladega is a great city for many reasons; with the residents being at the top of the list. We are dedicated, resilient and faith-filled. We are creative and entrepreneurial. We are love. And we are ready to shape our city into the home we desire it to be.

Dr. Adia Winfrey