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NAACP revamping in Coweta County

  • By Kandice Bell
  • |
  • Apr. 30, 2021 - 12:21 PM

NAACP revamping in Coweta County

Photo courtesy Karen Cheaves-Smith

The Coweta County Chapter of the hosted a free community event, Saturday, April 4. From left are Dr. Cynthia Brittain Finney , Shirley Hines and Karen Cheaves-Smith.

Coweta County NAACP chapter plans to focus on tornado relief, voting registration and other social issues

The Coweta County chapter of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People is revamping and recently installed new officers.

New officers were installed virtually via Zoom Sunday, March 21. New branch officers are

Dr. Cynthia Brittainn Finney, president; Karen Cheaves-Smith, vice-president; Melvinor Jackson-Kendrick, secretary; and Mary Griggs, treasurer.

A slate of local state and community leaders participated in the ceremony and gave greetings, including Mayor Keith Brady, Coweta County Commissioner Alphonso Smith, the Rev. Tamarkus Cook — past president of NAACP Coweta, Dexter Benning, and third vice president of the Georgia NAACP gave greetings to Zoom participants. Phyllis Blake, immediate past president of the Georgia NAACP installed the chapter's officers.

The Rev. James Woodall, president of the Georgia NAACP, gave remarks and words of encouragement. Additionally, the Rev. Dr. Melvin D. Brittian, Melvinor Jackson-Kendrick, Karen Cheaves Smith, Mary Griggs, Katie Kinney Anderson, Loren Taylor, Volita Almon and the Rev. Terrilyn Davis-Lemons participated in the virtual ceremony.

“Dr. Cynthia Brittian Finney delivered an inspiring charge to the branch regarding the work that must be done to uphold the tenets of the NAACP in our great county,” said Loren Audrey Taylor, who works with the NAACP chapter as the communications chair.

Taylor said the vision of the NAACP is “to ensure the political, educational, social and economic equality of rights of all persons and to eliminate racial hatred and discrimination.”

“We are looking forward to helping the community move forward,” Taylor said. “The NAACP is looking forward to engaging in the community to be a catalyst for diversity and inclusion and joining forces with like-minded organizations to promote a spirit of unity and upward mobility.”

Several local churches and the Coweta Chapter of NAACP held a free event to aid tornado victims. Saturday, April 3 from 10 a.m. until 1 p.m. at Newnan Chapel UMC on Robinson Street in Newnan.

There was free food for the community, as well as everyday items such as diapers, wipes, toiletries, cleaning supplies, water and hand sanitizer.

Dr. Cynthia Finney, president of the Coweta chapter of the NAACP, said the goal of the event was to connect the community to resources. She said the NAACP plans to collaborate with the other organizations in the community.

Finney said the NAACP has plans to host more community events in the future to connect the community to needed resources.

“My biggest concern is informing the people where to go for specific needs,” she said. Our chapter of the NAACP is here to help ensure the needs of this community are being met.”

Finney said she considers it a privilege to serve as the president of the Coweta County Chapter of the NAACP.

“Having been raised in Newnan, I know that I am following in the footsteps of some local civil rights leaders by being in this position,” Finney said. “I believe that it is important to have an organization with proven sustainability that works to secure, the political, educational, social and economic equality of rights in order to eliminate race-based discrimination and ensure the health and well-being of all people.”

Finney said the organization will support both national and state initiatives, but the organization really plans to focus on Coweta.

“My goal is to increase the membership and participation in the Coweta County NAACP Branch so that we can effectively identify the social issues in our local area and address them accordingly,” Finney said.

Karen Cheave Smith, vice president of the chapter, said in addition to continuing to assist with tornado relief, the chapter also plans to assist with voter registration.

Anyone interested in joining the chapter must pay a $30 annual membership fee. Fees can be sent to any executive board member. For more information, contact Loren Audrey Taylor at .