Courtesy Atlanta News First

The Atlanta City Council’s longest serving member, Jim Maddox, has died at age 88.

Maddox served on the council for 32 years before retiring in 2009. Nicknamed the “Dean” of the Atlanta City Council, Maddox represented the 11th District for eight terms.

Maddox served during the tenure of four different Atlanta mayors starting with Maynard Jackson back in 1977.

 The Atlanta City Council issued the following statement on Maddox’s passing:

“With the passing of Jim Maddox, we mourn the loss of a selfless and insightful visionary who was a trailblazing advocate in helping the City of Atlanta establish an international presence and partnerships with other countries. His representation overseas and efforts helped place Atlanta on a global stage. As a result of his unwavering commitment to his community and city, he left a profound mark as the longest-serving member of the City Council. We extend our condolences to his family, friends, and colleagues.”

Affectionately known as the Dean of the Atlanta City Council, Maddox retired from the Council in 2009 after serving 32 years and eight terms in office as the representative for District 11. A native of Atlanta, he served as the chair of the Community Development and Human Services committee. Maddox authored impactful legislation, crafting the city’s E-911 system, producing the Atlanta Sister Cities Commission, helping to open the Cascade Springs Nature Preserve, and creating a Tax Allocation District along the Campbellton corridor.

In recognition of his dedication and service to the community and city, the Community Development and Human Services committee unanimously passed an ordinance this week to honor Jim Maddox by name at the gateway to the Cascade Springs Nature Preserve.

Atlanta Mayor Andre Dickens released a statement Wednesday morning saying he was saddened to hear of Maddox’s death.

“I am saddened to learn that the man known as the Dean of the Atlanta City Council has passed away. Jim Maddox held the record as the longest serving elected leader in Atlanta’s history. He spent 32 years on the Council. He capably represented District 11 but was also a major flagbearer for Atlanta on the global stage. He may have left public office, but Mr. Maddox never stopped singing Atlanta’s praises around the world. This city has lost a staunch champion. On behalf of the City of Atlanta, I’m sending sincere condolences to the Maddox family.”

Collin Kelley has been the editor of Atlanta Intown for two decades and has been a journalist and freelance writer for 35 years. He’s also an award-winning poet and novelist.