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Dr. Ianthia Fisher: Crockett’s mayor

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Dr. Ianthia Lynn Fisher is the current Mayor of Crockett, Texas, the first elected African American and the first African American female to serve in this position. She is currently serving her second term in this capacity. It should be noted that she was preceded by former Crockett City Councilmen, the late Selmus Curtis, a great educator and Crockett businessman Elmer Murray, both African Americans, who were both appointed Mayors finishing out unexpired terms of elected mayors. We do applaud them for serving the City well during their short tenure as Mayor. Prior to becoming Mayor, Dr. Fisher was one of the most successful educators, community leaders and an ordinated minister of God with a lifelong commitment to helping her home town in so many important ways. She was recently re-elected to the Mayor’s position, unopposed, in my opinion, after serving as one of the best Mayors in the history of Crockett, Texas. Her holding the position of Mayor has been so inspirational to all of the cities and towns in East Texas. One observable effect appears to be that African Americans are voting in East Texas at a higher level since the election of Dr. Ianthia Fisher and her serving in her hometown of Crockett.

Dr. Fisher, since her first election in May of 2019, has been instrumental in getting so many good things accomplished for the City of Crockett and the citizens who live in Crockett and East Texas. On a family note, her husband, Jimmy Fisher, retired Chief of Police of Crockett, was the first African American to serve as Chief of Police in Crockett. Together they are the parents of some strong talented children who are very proud of their parents success. Additionally, she comes from a strong family led by her parents the late Sis. Earlie Groves of Crockett, a true leader and woman of God and the late Oscar “Son” Groves. Her sisters, Dr. Helen King of Huntsville, TX. Dr. Brenda Atchison of Dallas, TX, Victoria Essien and Dr. Ruth Waston-Houston of Houston, Texas are all true leaders in their own rights.

Her brothers Billy “Hollywood” Groves and Rev. Oscar Henderson of Crockett are both men of God who have great respect for their sister. Mayor Fisher also serves as the managing editor of the Groves Standard Newspaper a Groves family quarterly publication, owned by Billy “Hollywood” Groves.

In addition to her many accomplishments, she is the Chief Operating Officer for the Groves Educational Foundation, a non-profit organization, which recently hosted its Annual 35th Juneteenth Celebration on the foundation grounds located on Martin Luther King Jr. Street in Crockett. With the current legislation declaration of the 19th of Juneteenth as a federal holiday, it was a true validation of the many years of services that Dr. Fisher has put into keeping the Juneteenth County celebration alive. I asked her what she thought about her job as Crockett’s Mayor and her other accomplishments.

She stated: I guess I should say that first, it’s important to know who you are and what your values really are before you take on any public servant assignment. It is so easy to get sidetracked by so many outside influences. So I have learned to walk by faith. “I believe that God is the creator, Jesus is my Savior and the Holy Spirit is my guide. I hold to the value that people are more important than things and should be treated in that order. I believe that developing real relationships is the key to good communication. I believe that a city can only operate at its highest level if it is a “shared responsibility.” I’ve learned that my campaign slogan “Building Bridges” is more than a slogan but it’s a commitment. Metaphorically speaking, I found that bridges are necessary, they are not easy or cheap to construct but are the most effective and efficient ways to get things done and that they must be monitored and maintained
continuously. Meaning that communication and building relationships are like bridges, they are always evolving. Lastly, I learned that infrastructure is more than a buzz word, it’s a concept. While we may think of it in its smallest terms, it really encompasses the whole process of city development; inclusive of its people, businesses, and projects.

That in order to develop substantially, one must have infrastructure which is nothing more than a solid foundation. This has been my greatest challenge, insuring that we are building on a solid foundation. In terms of accomplishments, I believe that I have been instrumental in insuring that a systematic process is developed and followed. Thus insuring that anything that we accomplish can be duplicated or expanded upon, regardless of who is in charge. We’ve accomplish numerous projects, but I think the greatest thing that I can say about my accomplishment is that under my tenure the healing has begun. We once again can proudly view ourselves as members of the City of Crockett, Paradise in the Pines. I think I want my legacy to be not about me, but more so about how I enriched the lives of those that entrusted me with the administration of their city.

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