By The Atlanta Voice
Atlanta Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms announced Public Safety Commissioner George Turner will build the most robust summer youth engagements plans in recent Atlanta history as one of his last acts as an “executive on loan” from the Atlanta Hawks. For the Hawks, Turner serves as vice president of safety, security and parking; as part of the “executive on loan” partnership with the City of Atlanta, the Hawks agreed to cover his salary for at least a year.
Bottoms appointed Commissioner Turner in September 2018, overseeing the Atlanta Police Department, the Atlanta City Department of Corrections, the Office of Emergency Preparedness and the Atlanta Fire Rescue Department. Prior to his appointment as Public Safety Commissioner, Turner served a total of 36 years with the Atlanta Police Department—seven of those as APD Chief.
“The City of Atlanta is grateful for Commissioner George Turner’s commitment and leadership,” Bottoms said. “A true public servant, Commissioner Turner stepped up to the plate when called upon without hesitation to ensure Atlanta remained one of the safest large cities in America while hosting the most successful Super Bowl in recent history. Thank you to both Commissioner Turner and the Atlanta Hawks for their unwavering commitment to their community.”
Since his appointment, Commissioner Turner has fast-tracked his work to include helping coordinate Super Bowl LIII, saw the Atlanta Fired Rescue Department maintain its Class 1 insurance services office rating and helped to continue to make progress in reducing crime.
“I am extremely grateful to the Hawks’ Owner, Tony Ressler and Hawks CEO, Steve Koonin for allowing me the opportunity to serve the City of Atlanta once again,” Turner said in a statement when he accepted the appointment from the Mayor last September. “It shows their unwavering commitment to being good neighbors and active business partners in our city.”
Turner will remain with the City of Atlanta for 30 days to build out a summer youth program that will proactively engage Atlanta’s youth while schools are closed. Studies have shown that engaging young people during the summer months serves to both reduce the number of youth arrests and have a long-lasting impact on their behavior.
This article originally appeared in the Atlanta Voice.