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“Get involved”: Outgoing Dawson County commissioners Sharon Fausett, Tim Satterfield bid board farewell
Tim Satterfield BOC 2022
During his farewell comments to the board, outgoing District 3 county commissioner Tim Satterfield challenges county citizens to find ways to serve in local government. - photo by Julia Hansen

Instead of casting stones, outgoing District 3 Commissioner Tim Satterfield encouraged those with lingering qualms about Dawson County’s government to get involved with it. 

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“We’ve got so many committees. Get involved and see how the county works,” Satterfield said Dec. 15 during his final comments as a member of the Board of Commissioners.

Satterfield’s history of public service spans 46 years between Clayton and Dawson counties and the cities of McDonoughand Clearwater, Fl., where he previously worked. He served with Dawson County’s Fire and Emergency Services for 13 years, advancing to become the organization’s EMS Chief before he retired. 

Satterfield took office as the District 3 commissioner in 2019 and spent much of his time, particularly his comments during public meetings, advocating for county employees. 

Satterfield thanked his fellow board members for taking care of employees and encouraged the future board to do the same through measures like raises and necessary staffing increases.

He also thanked the county’s attorneys for “keeping us in line” and the finance department, led by interim county manager and Chief Financial Officer Vickie Neikirk, for “taking care of our money.”

Satterfield relished his time on the board and added that being a commissioner is “not about getting rich.”

“I just want to let them know that I've looked under every table in this department on the second floor, and I haven't found the money yet,” he quipped. 

Sharon Fausett BOC 2022
Sharon Fausett reads the late Carol Taylor’s “To You, Dawson County” to summarize her feelings about serving on the Board of Commissioners’ District 1 seat. - photo by Julia Hansen

Fausett’s farewell

Sharon Fausett, a Dawson County native, previously worked as a teacher and director for the county’s Department of Family and Children Services. Fausett and her family also run the popular Fausett Farms agritourism spot. 

She assumed the District 1 Commissioner spot in 2015. During her two terms on the board, Fausett established herself as an avid protector of the rural environment, like in her district, as well as a fervent supporter of Fire and Emergency Services.

While it wasn’t always easy being a commissioner in what BOC Chairman Billy Thurmond called going “out of the frying pan and into the fire,” Fausett considered the departure “bittersweet.”

Fausett, who’s also been involved with the Dawson County Historical Society, read a poem written by late local resident Carol Taylor titled “To You, Dawson County.”

The poem paid homage to Dawson County’s grand hills, pure and rippling streams and the “ageless and towering trees” and the warm personal connections between many area residents. 

“That's how I feel, and that’s why I chose to do this,” Fausett said.

While she bid her board colleagues adieu, she also did not rule out showing up in the future. 

District 4 Commissioner Emory Dooley thanked Fausett and Satterfield, saying he’s learned a lot from them and has seen their hearts for the county.

“Even though we haven’t always agreed, we could always have a conversation,” Dooley said. “Y’all have never refused to have a conversation about anything. You’ve always been open to me, that speaks a lot about who both of you are as people.”

Thurmond thanked Fausett and Satterfield for “all of the hard work and dedication y’all have put toward the board” and the two were each given gifts, a bouquet and engraved decanter, in recognition of their service. 

“You’ve been involved, and we’ll know you'll stay involved,” Thurmond said.

The chairman voiced his pride in what the current board has accomplished and said that throughout the process of governing, it’s been about “doing things for the right reasons and what’s in our minds and hearts best for the county.”

“That’s all you can do. I tell people all the time…when you go home at night and you can sleep with the decision you’ve made, then you've done the right thing,” Thurmond said. “It may not be what everybody else agrees to, but it's still the right thing because you’re at peace with it.”