FULTON, MISS. (WCBI) – For 12 years , Mayor Paul Walker has presided over daily business in Fulton from his office in City Hall.
“We had a lot of bumps in the road , stuff like that, but overall it’s been a tremendous learning experience for myself,” Walker said.
Walker was vice mayor before being elected Mayor in 1997, along with a new board of aldermen. Walker says there have been few disagreements between he and other aldermen and there have been many accomplishments.
“Over two or three million dollars into the sewer system, water, gas, redone that, two of the main special projects I’ve had, of course the walking track, 2 point 1 mile walking track, that was done with grant money other than 150 thousand dollars city had to put in,” he said.
Mayor Walker says another highlight of his years in office would have to be the construction of Playgarden Park. This downtown attraction brings in folks from all throughout the area and is also credited with helping kickstart the local economy.
“That seems like that was the kickstarter of the whole thing and now we’re seeing businesses opening back up and other things coming to town,” Walker said.
Walker says as mayor he was in a position meet those who made decisions that benefited the area.
“Being able to help the community in ways I couldn’t have done it if I was in the private sector, making contacts in Jackson and Washington DC about getting grants for our community,” he said.
He points out securing grants was a team effort, much like the recruitment of Toyota to Northeast Mississippi. On the personal side, Walker raised his daughter Mandy and son Chris, while holding down the mayor’s office.
“Both of them grew up with this, as Dad being this and me being with them, me being a single parent, during those times it was important for me to try and spend as much time with them but I didn’t get to at times, I was traveling this, that and the other but they were very proud to see their father do this, they were raised in a political world,” Walker reflected.
Overall, Mayor Walker says he is leaving office with countless fond memories, a record of great accomplishments and many lifelong friends.
“I just want to give my best wishes to the board and new mayor and hopefully they will have a successful and maybe not near as a bumpy road as we have had at times,” he concluded.
Walker will return to the private sector in July.