December 7, 2005
He may not have a vote, but he has lots of responsibility as mayor of Georgia’s second largest city. Deke Copenhaver got plenty of citywide support from voters, but many still don’t know much about him. News 12 is on your side with more on the new mayor and what he hopes to do right away.
Mr. Copenhaver says many people doubted him early on, but says he proved a lot of people wrong when he won the election Tuesday night. And though he may lack political experience, he says he’s more than ready to start the job.
If he’s not already, Deke Copenhaver is likely to become a local household name. That is if you can pronounce it.
“You know, it’s funny. I still think some people have some trouble with the name,” Copenhaver said.
But you’ll see and hear his name around for at least another year, after being elected as Augusta’s new mayor.
“I know that there’s some folks out there that say you’ve only got a year. I welcome the opportunity to prove to the people of Augusta what I can do as mayor,” Copenhaver said.
The 38-year-old told News 12 he has a passion for more than just politics.
“I’m somebody from a big family, I have a strong faith,” Copenhaver said.
Deke was raised in Columbia County, and later lived in Atlanta and Buford, South Carolina, before starting an environmental non-profit organization in Augusta. And just before the election, he took us on a tour of a soon to be park for children in the community.
“I’m going to have to leave a job that I really love to enter the mayor’s office, but this is really, getting into this race and becoming mayor is just an extension of public service,” Copenhaver said.
And last night at his victory party, Deke made a promise.
“Augusta did not get in the situation it’s in overnight. It’s taken awhile and we will not change it overnight. But we will start to change tomorrow morning,” Copenhaver said.