Waycross Mayor & City Commission

Mayor photo

Mayor

Dr. Michael-Angelo James

Dr. Michael-Angelo James is the son of Mr. Sylvester James and the late Mrs. Juanita P. James. He is a licensed Gospel minister since August 10, 1980, ordained in May 1983 by Reverend Dr. Eugene James Menefee. In December 1989, he received and accepted the call to serve as the full-time Pastor of Emmanuel’s International Cathedral of the Holy Spirit. The installation celebration as pastor took place in February 1990. The Board of Directors of Emmanuel’s International Cathedral of the Holy Spirit, Inc. elected Dr. Michael-Angelo James as their Senior Bishop in 1998. His consecration service, held in February 2002, was an international recognition. He became the first consecrated Bishop of Progressive Interfaith Ministries Association as well as the 22nd International Bishop of the Trans-Atlantic and Pacific Alliance of Churches. Archbishop Dr. Leonard David Love conducted the services.

Dr. James’ recognition by the Queen of England, London, England, was in January 2003. He was reaffirmed as Bishop-Primate in March of 2008. He is the establishmentarian of the International Cathedral of Faith Fellowship (2003).

Dr. James has served as the overseer of the Church of God in Claxton, Georgia, since 2000. His elevation to the Metropolitan Archbishop of the Global Conference of Bishops under the leadership of the Ecumenical Patriarch, Archbishop Dennis Myles Golphin, debuted in 2018.

He is the father of one son, retired Army Captain Marshall Lee James, seven grandchildren, and numerous godchildren. He is a bestselling author, licensed clinical pastoral counselor, teacher, and scholar.

He is a member and chaplain of the Exchange Club of Waycross, immediate past-president of the Kiwanis Club of Waycross, and immediate past-president of the Okefenokee Toastmasters Club #8269. He is the charter president of the President’s Distinguished Swamp Talk Toastmasters Club #7478359 (2019-2020). He is the recipient of the highest honor bestowed by Toastmasters International, The Distinguished Toastmaster Award. He serves as District 14, Area H83 Director, 2019-2020, and Area H82 Director, 2020-2021, Toastmasters International.

He is a member of the Ware Children’s Initiative, Waycross-Ware County Chamber of Commerce Executive Board Director, and Glennville Chamber of Commerce. He serves as the immediate past chairman of the Waycross and Ware County Planning Commission.

He is president of the Waycross Area Ministerial Alliance (F.O.C.U.S.: Fellowship of Christian under Shepherds) and a member of the Okefenokee Ministerial Fellowship. He is the saxophonist in the Glory Band of Claxton, Georgia. He is a member of the Early Risers’ Plug and Play and the Okefenokee Heritage Center. He is a Volunteer Chaplain for the Georgia Department of Corrections since 2006. He is a Silver Life Member of the N.A.A.C.P. He serves as executive director of his local branch in Waycross, Georgia.

He is a life member of the Grand Chapter of Kappa Alpha Psi Fraternity, Incorporated as well as a member in good standing. He serves as reporter and Chaplain of the Brunswick Alumni Chapter of Kappa Alpha Psi Fraternity, Incorporated. He is an Executive Board Member of the Waycross Y.M.C.A. as well as Executive Board Member of Action Pact (formerly Concerted Services). He is the past-president of the Main Street of Waycross Executive Board. He is a friend of the Okefenokee (Waycross-Ware County) Library.

Author of 3 Best-Sellers:
  • Trusting God to Supply Your Needs: Perspectives on Exercising Your Faith” (2003)
  • Leader, Can You Stand the Test?” (2004)
  • Just Because God Said It: A Journal of Prophetic Predictions and Pronouncements” (2010)
Counselor, licensed clinical pastoral, advanced pastoral counselor

He is the founder and proprietor of the Bishop’s Chamber Christian Counseling Center (1032 Waller Street, Waycross, Ga). The chamber provides individual counseling, group counseling, premarital, marital, and post-marital counseling. He is a Court Appointed Special Advocate for Foster Children powered by Action Pact. He is president of the STEP Up A Workgroup (Prevention Workgroup). He is a member of the Early Risers, L.L.C., Mentorship Program for Ware County High School’s Football and Basketball Players.

Teacher

He is a former Waycross High School social studies teacher and assistant principal at Waycross High and Ware County High School, as well as a former adjunct professor at Truth Bible College. He serves now as the founding chancellor and professor of Christian education of the World-Wide accredited Emmanuel’s Bible College (Sites: Waycross, Claxton, and Glennville, Georgia), the graduate professor of pastoral administration at the First Born Seminary and Training School in Waycross, Georgia, and professor of interpersonal relations and professional development at the Coastal Pines Technical College (Main Campus) in Waycross, Georgia.

Scholar

He is an honor graduate of Waycross High School. He has earned both sacred and secular degrees: Troy University: Bachelor of Science in Education — Political Science and History; Emory University’s Candler School of Theology: Master of Divinity; Valdosta State University: Master of Education — Secondary Education, Social Sciences, Leadership, Administration and Sociology; Truth Bible College: Specialist — Christian Education; Truth Bible College: Doctorate — Christian Education; Truth Bible College, Sarasota Academy of Christian Counselors, and National Christian Counselors Association: Christian Counseling Certification and Licensing.

He is a member of the Joint College of Bishops in Cleveland, Ohio, and a graduate of the Waycross-Ware County Chamber of Commerce’s Leadership Waycross Class of 2017. He is the Mayor of Waycross, Georgia. He received the oath of office on January 7, 2020.

Some other notable achievements:
  • 2011 voted Man of the Year for the State of Georgia
  • 2012 M.L.K. Holiday Celebration Parade Marshal
  • 2016-2017 Kiwanis Club of Waycross Ted Harris Human and Spiritual Values Award
  • 2018 Jack Williams Community Service Award
  • 2019 Distinguished Georgia Kiwanian
  • 2020 The Distinguished Toastmaster Award, Toastmasters International

Waycross City Commissioners

  • Photo

    1500 Clough Street
    Waycross, GA 31501
    912.338.8936 (Home)

    DISTRICT 1

    Norman E. Davis, Sr.

    Mr. Norman E. Davis, Sr. was elected as Waycross City Commissioner for District 1 in 2006. Since his election, he has worked diligently to perform the duties and responsibilities of this office as well as take the opportunity to make a difference in the quality of life for all the residents of Waycross.

    Commissioner Davis is a native of Waycross. He is married with three children and is a member of St. Paul Baptist Church. He is a 1959 graduate of Center High School. He received a Bachelor of Science Degree in Commercial Industries from Tuskegee University. While pursuing his master’s degree in city, county, state, and federal government management, he was elected to serve the Macon County Schools Board of Education. He was instrumental in reorganizing the county school system and building the community’s first consolidated Macon County High School.

    Commissioner Davis has served as a 30-year planner for city, county and state (Macon County) program monitor projects, and as an investigator and auditor for city, county and state educational projects. He has also served as the supervisor-human service planner III for Children’s Trust Fund; Director of Community Development; Director of Community Planning and Economic Development Adjustment; Instructor/Resource Development, Tuskegee Model City Human Resources Developer, City Department Head of Recreation and Youth Services; Director of Fatherhood Initiative Program (AFIP); Director of the Young Volunteers and Action Program; Director of Migrant Worker Program; President and CEO of a Small Business, and other capacities in city, county, and state government. In addition, he planned, developed, and obtained funds for implementation of the city’s Head Start Program.

    Through the years, Commissioner Davis has had numerous professional affiliations with organizations such as Tuskegee Jaycees; Tuskegee County Youth Council; Macon County Retardation and Rehabilitation Board; Omega Phi Fraternity; F&E Masons; and the Shriners (32nd Degree). In addition, he was an appointed member of the Southeast Georgia Regional Development Center’s Board of Directors representing Ware County.

    Commissioner Davis has numerous professional distinctions that include performance and contribution recognitions from Personalities of the South and Who’s Who in America. He was also named Legionnaire of the Year. In addition, he was given the State Mental Health Service Award; City of Tuskegee Outstanding Achievement Award; Joint House and Senate Resolutions Recognition for Outstanding Service to Youth; Jaycees Scotsman and Outstanding Business Award; and the Pro Plan International Outstanding Achievement Award. Commissioner Davis was also given a letter of recognition from former President Ronald Reagan for the Young People’s Volunteer Training Program.

    City Commission Certificates of Achievements and Certifications:
    • Georgia Municipal Association (GMA) National League of Cities, University of Georgia and Georgia Municipal Association/Certificate of Achievement for Elected Officials/June 24, 2008.
    • Georgia Academy for Economic Development, Regional Economic and Leadership Development/May 2008.
    • University of Georgia and GMA, Robert E. Knox Jr., Municipal Leadership Institute, Leadership Certificate/July 2007.
    • Certificate of Achievement, National League of Cities, Recipient of Silver Certificate, Leadership Executive Level/November 2011.
    • National League of Cities, Certificate of Achievement in Leadership Excellence, Bronze Certificate, Leadership Fellow/2011.
    • National League of Cities, Silver Certificate of Achievement in Leadership Excellence, Leadership Executive/2011.
    • University of Georgia and Georgia Municipal Association, Harold D. Holtz Municipal Training Institute for Elected Officials, Awarded Certificate of Excellence/January 2011.
    • Appointed Member, Southeast Georgia Regional Development Center’s Board of Directors representing Ware County/January 2007.
    • University of Georgia and Georgia Municipal Association, Completed Harold F. Holtz Municipal Training Institute for Elected Officials, Awarded Certificate/June 2007.
    • Awarded Certificate in Recognition of Outstanding Professional Achievement, Superior Leadership Ability, and Exceptional Service to the Community, Black History Month/2007.
    • Universal Protection Service, Employee of the Month Certificate in Honor of Outstanding Performance/January 2014.
    • Certificate of Completion, Allegiance Security Group Training Program/November 2011.
    • Leadership Training Institute, Completed Performance Reporting: Being Accountable to Your Constituents, City Conference, Washington, D.C. /March 2007.
    • Law Enforcement Seminars, Certification in Community Policing, Waycross, GA/March 2008.
    • Certification in Ethics by State Ethics Commission of Georgia/October 2006.
    • Land Bank Workshop 101, Mercer University Center/September 2011.
    • National League of Cities, Leadership Training institute, Certificate in Building Accountability and Commitment/March 2011.
    • National League of Cities, Leadership Training Institute, Agenda to a Successful Completion, Certificate, Washington, D.C. /March 2011.
    • National Incident Management System, Certificate/NIMS-Executive Briefing (IS402), April 2008.
    • Leadership Training Institute, Certificate/Policy Leadership for Mayors and Council Members, Washington, D.C. /2008.
    • Leadership Training Institute, Certificate/Effective Community Collaboration and Creative Problem Solving, Washington, D.C. /2008.
    • Leadership Training Institute, Certificate/Policy Leadership for Mayors and Council Members, Washington, D.C. 2008
    • Association of Government Accountants, Certificate of Achievement in Service Efforts and Accomplishments Reporting, 2006.
    • Certificate of Completion, Citizens Police Academy, Waycross Police Department, 2007.
    • National League of Cities, Certificate/Citywide Gang Violence Reduction Strategy.
    • Certificate of Participation, School Supplies Distribution, American Legion Post/2014-15.
    • Georgia Public Safety Training Center, Incident Command System/Overview for Elected Officials/Senior Executives in Georgia.
    • Fanning Institute, Georgia Municipal Association, Certificate of Completion, Downtown Development Authority Basic Training, Tifton, Georgia/2012.
  • Photo

    DISTRICT 2

    John Threat

  • Photo

    912.283.6757 (Home)

    DISTRICT 3

    Marian C. Solomon-Gaines

    Marian Solomon-Gaines, a Waycross native, holds the District 3 seat on the Waycross City Commission. A Waycross High School graduate, Marian furthered her education at Albany State College (University), where she obtained a B.A. Degree in Sociology. Marian, now retired, was employed with the State of Georgia since 1983. She held the position of quality assurance specialist for the Office of Child Protection (formerly DFCS).

    Marian is the daughter of Mrs. Valencia Thomas Solomon and the late Donel Solomon, Sr. She is the proud mother of two children, Kimberly and Jordan Gaines. Marian and her family are active members of Greater Mt. Zion A.M.E. Church, where she serves as president member of the Mass Choir, and secretary to her pastor. In her decision to seek political office, Marian gives credit to the nurturing influence of her family and church.

    “From the time I was a child, I understood that in order for my community to grow, I had to take an active part in it. Everyone, my family, pastors, teachers and community leaders have all played a part in instilling the principles of Christian values and community service in me. Each and every day, I try my best to uphold those values.”

    Marian is certainly a “take-action” person in this community. She is involved in many projects and organizations. Always an advocate for children, youth and families, Marian had an active part in the development of the Daisy Youth Center and the McKinney Community Health Center. From 1989 to 1997, she served as a commissioner for the Housing Authority of the City of Waycross. Marian is also a 1992 graduate of Leadership Waycross and was a participant in the 1993 City of Waycross Citizen’s Police Academy. Marian has served on the ML King Holiday Commission since 1993; in addition, she serves on the board for CASA (Court Appointed Special Advocate for children).

    Marian states that District 3 is a very important district in the City of Waycross. “We have worked very hard to make this the type of area that anyone would love to live in. We take pride in our neighborhoods and want to see them grow into something special. There are already three very strong neighborhood organizations in this district. I want to see one in every neighborhood. If we are organized, work together and all have the same common goals, we can make things happen in District 3!” Among other things, Marian works hard to make sure that vacant lots are cleaned up and empty, dilapidated houses either torn down or renovated.

    “I have a vision for this district, one that I will work very hard to accomplish. I have a passion to always do the right thing. With my drive and the support of the residents in this district, that vision will materialize!”

  • Photo

    912-287-1433 (Home)

    DISTRICT 4

    Diane L. Hopkins

  • Photo

    DISTRICT 5

    Henry Strickland