Gordys given Citizen of the Year honors
By By JOHN DILMORE JR. Publisher
Joe and Carol Gordy were named Brewton's Citizens of the Year this week during a ceremony held as part of the Brewton Area Chamber of Commerce's annual membership banquet.
In presenting the award, Mayor Ted Jennings remarked, "These people have done so much in this community, it's hard to list everything."
The Gordys are somewhat different from many past winners of the award -- which has been presented by the Chamber since 1962 -- in that they are not native to the Brewton area.
But they more than share in one of the other common denominators Jennings mentioned as prevalent among past winners, "a great love of the community and the people of the community."
In accepting the award, Joe Gordy thanked the crowd gathered, and added, "We've had great support here. And all we can say is 'you ain't seen nothing yet.'"
The Gordys are deeply involved in many different aspects of life in Brewton, both civically and as part of the business community. They are also counted among the community's greatest ambassadors.
Joe is President of Natural Decorations, Inc., and Carol is Chairman and CEO. The company, which the Gordys brought to Brewton in 1999, is one of the world's most prestigious creators of floral and botanical reproductions.
Joe, who works in the community as Chairman of the Brewton Tree and Beautification Committee, is an internationally known floral artist. Included among a long list of past accomplishments, he was chosen to decorate the White House for Christmas in 1984, 1985 and 1986, and in 1986 was the designer for the Statue of Liberty's rededication ceremony.
He has a degree in horticulture from Mississippi State University, and has designed for numerous national publications, including Flowers &Florist Magazine and the Southern Living Christmas Book.
Carol is recognized as the driving force behind the revitalization of downtown Brewton, which has grown and thrived with new business intrests while maintaining its historic character.
In 1986, under Gordy's direction, NDI underwent a change in philosophy that has driven the company's success over the intervening years. That approach set NDI's goals high -- providing the finest quality botanical reproductions at a fair, reasonable price.
Among the local organizations Carol has been a major supporter of are Jefferson Davis Commmunity College, The Brewton Council of the Arts and Turtle Point Science Center.