Bertie duo gain state recognition

Published 10:24 am Tuesday, September 6, 2016

WINSTON-SALEM – Bertie County Commissioner Vice-Chairman Ernestine Byrd Bazemore and former Vice-Chair Tammy Lee were recognized at the North Carolina Association of County Commissioners’ (NCACC) annual meeting in Winston-Salem this month for their completion of two courses in government.

Bazemore was recognized for meeting the requirements for the Mentor level, while Lee was accredited for the Practitioner level, both in the Local Elected Leaders Academy.

The Local Elected Leaders Academy (LELA) is a partnership with the UNC School of Government in Chapel Hill, the N.C. Association of County Commissioners and the N.C. League of Municipalities and offers local elected officials the knowledge and skills needed to lead and govern in their communities.

The highest level of recognition, a Mentor means Bazemore has completed a minimum of 82 credits (18 orientation credits, with 42 focused in-depth credits, and 24 elective credits), all as part of one’s continuing education since becoming a county commissioner.

In Lee’s case, a Practitioner has completed a minimum of 48 credits (18 orientation credits, 18 focused in-depth credits, and 12 elective credits).

To achieve this status, county commissioners are recognized for their participation in both educational programs for the state and their counties and for their service to the NCACC.

The starting place for earning credits is the orientation program, which begins with the Essentials of County Government.

As commissioners increase education and service, they earn credits toward recognition at three levels: Practitioner, Master and Mentor.

The NCACC tracks credits and recognizes participation every year at the Annual Conference. The 2016 conference was hosted by Forsyth County.

“The Academy is designed to help our commissioners by improving their knowledge of the issues and their leadership skills,” said NCACC Executive Director Kevin Leonard. “A commissioner who achieves recognition through LELA has shown a true commitment to their personal development and to their constituents back home.”