For a few moments last week, Rockmart City Manager Jeff Ellis got to relax for a few minutes while friends and colleagues praised his leadership.

Ellis was honored for 40 years of service to the city during the July meeting of the Rockmart City Council on Tuesday, July 14. Mayor Sherman Ross gave him a special award recognizing his continued dedication and cake was served for those in attendance.

The moment served as a moment for others to shine a spotlight on the things Ellis has overseen during his four decades with the city of Rockmart, the first 15 of which were as fire chief from 1980 to 1995.

Scott Carter, who is currently the chief over the Cartersville Fire Department, began his career under Ellis with the Rockmart Fire Department and later became chief after Ellis started as city manager.

“When you think of the city of Rockmart, you think of Jeff Ellis,” Carter said during a moment in the meeting. “Jeff Ellis took a chance on me 37 years ago as a rookie firefighter.”

City Attorney Mike McRae brought up the challenge of renovating the former Rockmart High School campus on Piedmont Avenue and dedication Ellis showed to make sure they could do it as efficiently as possible.

“It took vision and heart to take on a project like that and turn it into the government campus it is today,” McRae said.

Ross and the city council also recognized city employee Dusty Cook for his five-year milestone with the city. Cook works at the Rockmart Wastewater Treatment Plant.

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