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Mayor's Blog

My blog is a place where I brag on the great things people are doing in our community. From proclamations to awards to events and more, I love recognizing those who make a difference in Opelika.

May 18

May 17, 2022 City Council Meeting

Posted on May 18, 2022 at 2:55 PM by Celina Becton

The May 17, 2022, City Council Meeting was full of many recognitions! The first remarks were given to the 2022 Killgore and OPS/AMEA Scholarship Recipients! Congratulations and good luck to all of the high school seniors who received scholarships!

The OPS/AMEA Scholarship Recipients:OPS/AMEA Scholarship Recipients 2022

  • Hannah Grace Blackstock
  • Georgia Lorainne Duncan 
  • Kerry Louisa Nell
  • Orah Makai Preston











The Killgore Scholarship Recipients:Killgore Scholarship Recipients

  • Bianca Brown 
  • Abigail Collins
  • Alyssa Davidson
  • Paul Goodman
  • Brecklin Gould 
  • Sydney Lowe
  • Orah Preston
  • William Randolph
  • Fatima Santamaria
  • Vera Smith T
  • Jake Walters
  • Bailey Williams





Attaboy and Attagirl awards are given to outstanding City of Opelika employees. I had the honor to give an Attagirl award to Amy Bond for her exceptional service to Opelika Power Services. Thank you, Amy!

Amy Bond Attagirl Award


During the meeting, Opelika Parks and Recreation Department presented a check to the Food Bank of East Alabama. The check is from the funds raised through the annual Empty Bowls fundraiser through the Opelika Parks and Recreation department. Over $45,000 was raised! Way to go, Parks and Rec!


Food Bank of East Alabama

Food Bank of East Alabama: Judy Jones (FB Board Member), Anne Whittelsey (FB Board Member), Janice Buckinham (FB Board Member), Earl Mitchell (FB Staff) and Martha Henk (FB Staff) Parks and Recreation: Matthew Battles, Sherie Spain Special contributors: Kitty Greene, Jeff Tickal, Holly Judd

Lastly, I recognized the proclamation of Kenneth Burton's retirement and his excellent and dedicated service to the City of Opelika and its children. Congratulations on a job well done for your entire career, and I wish you a wonderful retirement that is well deserved.

Kenneth Burton Retirement


May 04

May 3, 2022 City Council Meeting

Posted on May 4, 2022 at 2:24 PM by Celina Becton

Last night at the May 3rd City Council Meeting, I proclaimed May 2022, as “ALS Awareness Month” in Opelika, Alabama. Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS), commonly known as “Lou Gehrig’s Disease,” is a rapidly progressive, invariably fatal neurodegenerative disease characterized by cell degeneration in the spinal cord. The Opelika City Council and I issued this proclamation in memory of Robert Lofton, a lifelong Veterinarian, and a diligent servant to the people as the City Councilman for Ward-3, who dedicated his life to God, his family, four-legged creatures everywhere, and his community. We honor Robert’s long-time service, and in doing so recognize the broader loss this indiscriminate disease inflicts when it takes from us the contributions of such community members.  

ALS Proclamation

I also had the opportunity to proclaim May 2022 as "Bike Month" in Opelika. The bicycle is a healthy, convenient, and environmentally sound form of transportation and an excellent tool for the recreation and enjoyment of Opelika’s scenic beauty. I would like to encourage all residents to join me in this special observance! 

May 2022 Bicycle Month Proclamation

Lastly, I recognized the proclamation of Dr. Mark D. Neighbors' retirement and his excellent and dedicated service to the City of Opelika and its youth. Dr. Neighbors has given more than 36 years to education, 15 of those years as the superintendent of Opelika City Schools. He will continue to serve as superintendent until the end of the 2022 school year. Dr. Neighbors believes it is important to do what is best for all children, his motto “Educating Every Child, Every Day” has been adopted as the official mission statement of the Opelika City Schools. Thank you, Mark, for all that you have done for Opelika!

Mark Neighbors, Wife and Mayor - Retirement


Apr 21

April 19, 2022 City Council Meeting

Posted on April 21, 2022 at 11:22 AM by Celina Becton

On Tuesday, April 19, 2022, I declared at the City Council meeting that Opelika would set aside the month of April to support the Month of the Military Child. It was an honor to recognize Opelika's military-connected children John Sweatman, City of Opelika Project Manager, Crystal Brown, Army Reserve Family Readiness Support Assistant, and Amber Beals, Army Reserve Family Programs Director, to represent all of Opelika's military-connected youth.

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