|"Make no judgment with the absence of compassion." -A.G.
Superior Court Judge Bobby Peters has a very impressive history in law and politics.
He has worked in all segments of the criminal justice system and has held key
political positions in local government and public safety. Bobby worked at the
Muscogee County Jail at age 21 while a deputy sheriff, promoted to detective,
taught criminal justice at
Southern Union State College,
and became the Director
of a regional police academy while driving to Atlanta at night to attend law
school. Working full time and driving many hours each week to attend classes,
Bobby passed the bar exam prior to finishing law school in 1979. He has been a member of the
State Bar of Georgia
for over twenty-six years and has practiced law in the same location,
which is a historic home located at 832 First Avenue.
While practicing law Bobby Peters remained active in the community and was
recognized by eighteen different organizations in 1988 in a ceremony in recognition
of free legal assistance and dedicated community service he provided to those
who could not afford an attorney. The organizations gave him the title,
"The People’s Advocate."
Bobby Peters has also been very active in the
political arena and was elected to a city-wide post on the city council where he
served for twelve years. In 1994 he was elected Mayor of the
City of Columbus and
in 1998 he became the first mayor in the history of the city to be elected to a
second consecutive four-year term.
When he ran for Mayor, there were six candidates, including two fellow city
councilors (both of whom were also lawyers), the President of the NAACP, a black
minister, and a business person. Even with two minority candidates, Bobby won
every black precinct in the city and won the election without a runoff, which the
political experts said was impossible. Four years later, he walked into his second
term without an opposition candidate.
During the eight years as Mayor, Bobby made sure there was no property tax
increase and all boards and committees reflected the demographics of the city
population. Columbus experienced tremendous growth and prosperity, thousands of
new jobs were created, and new high tech developments were created.
He paved the way for passage of a new sales taxes for public safety vehicles, new
fire stations throughout the city, new swimming pools and new "super-centers"
for recreation, a new central library, new technology, remodeling and expansion
of the Trade Center, infrastructure improvements; he worked hard to pass the sales
tax for a new civic center, new riverwalk, new public safety building, and public
investment in the arts with a new fabulous River Center.
In addition to his duties
as Mayor, the Charter of the City placed the Mayor
as head of all public safety departments. As Director of Public Safety, Bobby was
in charge of the Police Department, the Fire Department, E-9ll, the Muscogee County
Correctional Institute, and EMS.
His dynamic appointments led to a team of leaders who were unsurpassed,
including a City Manager who was a retired three-star general, a police chief, fire
chief, and city attorney who all rose in the ranks of their respective departments, a police
Major as the Warden of the prison, and many other esteemed professionals. Mayor Peters knew
the success of a leader is determined by the professionalism and dedication of those
appointed to key leadership positions. Mayor Peters also had the prominence of
selecting the first minority department heads for various departments of the
Consolidated Government. Inclusion and mutual respect for everyone were the
hallmarks of his tenure in office.
Please take a moment to read his
full biography written by Mr. J. Edward Wilson,
Administrative Assistant to Mayor Peters and to the current Mayor of Columbus.