Girls State delgates get inside

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, June 7, 2000

look at politics on state, local level


Staff Writer

Sign up for our daily email newsletter

Get the latest news sent to your inbox

The next female governor or other high ranking state official could be among the 327 young women spending the week at Troy State University.

For those who choose a future in politics, the delegates to Alabama Girls State are getting some good advice from leaders.

One of the highlights of the Girls State tradition is having State Treasurer Lucy Baxley speak. Much to the delight of the future officeholders, Baxley spoke to the bright young women Tuesday morning.

"I don’t want to be in a man’s place, but I don’t want there to be places only a man can be," Baxley said.

Baxley, who is one of the state’s most popular officeholders, is remembered because of the "I Love Lucy" campaign slogan she adopted when she first ran for state treasurer.

Although she chose the slogan to catch voters’ attention, Baxley’s choice had a hidden meaning ­ public servants should be loving.

"I am in this business of public life because I love people," Baxley said, after commenting a person seeking office should not be seeking power.

In her closing remarks, Baxley wished the girls sitting before her fulfillment in their chosen careers and peace in their lives.

Monday night, those elected as mayors and councilwomen were sworn into office by Troy Mayor Jimmy Lunsford.

After giving the oath of office, Lunsford gave them some tips just in case they decide to take what they learn this week and enter the world of politics and public service.

"Don’t expect every time you walk in the room everyone to stand and clap," Lunsford said in response to the welcome he received as he entered the Claudia Crosby Theater in Smith Hall.

When he decided to run for his first time as mayor in 1982, Lunsford said he was reminded of something he was going to pass down ­ "Every decision you make in city government affects someone."

A lesson many public servants don’t learn until their in office is one Lunsford knows well. That is why, he said, he wanted to encourage anyone considering a future in politics to "make the right decision, no matter how popular or unpopular it will be" for the entire community.

Shirley Woodie, director of the Troy State University Institute for Leadership Development, gave the Inaugural Address to the young women she called the "backbones in the Alabama high school population."

Woodie told the Girls Staters there are four "bones" that are part of any organization ­ the wishbones who wish things to happen and don’t act, the jawbones who do all the talking and little of the work, the knuckle bones who knock and criticize and the backbones who do all the work.

To the girls getting ready for their senior year in high school, Woodie encouraged them to do three things: formulate a clear vision for life, accept personal responsibility for who and what you are and choose your friends and associates with care.

Today, the delegates the Girls State will hear from Montgomery District Attorney Ellen Brooks and former First Lady Marsha Folsom. Other speakers this week will include: State Auditor Susan Parker, Alabama Court of Criminal Appeals Judge Sue Bell Cobb, businesswoman Sister Schbert and Attorney General Bill Pryor.