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Mayor Floyd Adam Jr: The people’s mayor

2/6/2014, 1:55 a.m.
Mayor Floyd Adam

Floyd Adams Jr. was born in Savannah, Ga., on May 11, 1945, to Floyd “Pressboy” Adams and Wilhelmina Anderson Adams. He was their second child and first son.

He was a 1963 graduate of St. Pius X Catholic School. He attended Brooklyn College in New York and Armstrong State College (now Armstrong Atlantic State University) in Savannah. However, he curtailed his education to help his father with the family’s business, The Herald of Savannah (now known as the Savannah Herald), Savannah’s Black weekly newspaper and printing company. He became a master printer and a professional photographer. He also worked briefly for Hercules in Savannah.

Floyd married Freddie Mae Baul in 1967, and to this union a son, Kenneth, and a daughter, Khristi, were born. He later married Deborah Gibbs in 1999.

He followed in his father’s footsteps to be named publisher and president of The Herald of Savannah, in August 1984. He served as its editor from January 1968 to January 1996. His parents started the business in 1945.

In 1982, he was elected as the District One alderman of the city of Savannah. He served in that position until 1991, when he was elected alderman-at-large post 1. He is the first African-American elected to a citywide post in Savannah. Adams served as mayor pro tempore of Savannah. Adams made more history by being elected as the first African-American mayor of Savannah. He was sworn in on Jan. 2, 1996. Adams was re-elected for a second term. Adams, along with the City Council, initiated many programs to enhance the city government and benefit Savannah citizens during his tenure as mayor.

He has been involved in a variety of Savannah-based community civic and charitable organizations.

He was preceded in death by his parents and two brothers, Carl W. Adams and Lincoln Raymond Adams.

Adams leaves his legacy; his wife, Deborah Gibbs Adams; two children, Kenneth (Kimetra) Adams and Khristi (Eltoria) Chisholm [ED: Why are the names in parentheses? Are those actually their middle names? Nicknames?]; five grandchildren, Stephen Scott, Tiffany Adams, Brandon Adams, Christopher Adams and Desiree Adams; six great-grandchildren, Nassiya Hall, Tamari Adams, Aaden Adams, Ale’jiah Hicks, Zy’lee Scott and Zoey Scott; a sister, Jacquelyn Adams; an aunt, Ethel Hunter; and numerous brothers-in-law, sisters-in-law, nieces, nephews, cousins and countless friends.

The visitation service will take place on Thursday, Feb. 6 at Resurrection of Our Lord Catholic Church (112 Fell St. in Savannah), and the homegoing celebration will take place on Friday, Feb. 7 at St. James Catholic Church (8412 Whitfield Ave. at Montgomery Crossroads in Savannah).

In lieu of flowers, the family asks that you send a contribution to the Resurrection of Our Lord Catholic Church Building Fund (112 Fell St., Savannah, GA 31415) and/or Frank Cullen Boys and Girls Club Alumni and Friends (P.O. Box 5744, Savannah, GA 31404).