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The Atlanta City Council unanimously passed two resolutions to rename its chambers during Monday’s full council meeting.

19-R-3007 will name the current chamber after Fulton County Judge and former Council President Marvin S. Arrington Sr.

19-R-3087 will name the old chamber in honor of former Atlanta Mayor Sam Massell. The council convened in the old chamber until construction of the City Hall Annex was completed in 1989. The council sent both resolutions to the mayor post-haste.

Post 1 At-Large Council member Michael Julian Bond, who sponsored the resolutions, had high praise for each official.

“Both men are Atlanta legends who have left an indelible imprint and set a standard for all elected officials who followed them to meet,” said Bond. “There has never been a time when I haven’t known them to be tremendously, intrinsically and civically active. It is appropriate that they receive this honor.”

Arrington was elected to the Atlanta Board of Aldermen (now the Atlanta City Council) in 1969 and served as its president for 17 years. He was appointed to the Fulton County Superior Court by former Georgia Governor Roy Barnes in January 2002, where he served until 2012. Arrington received the Georgia Bar Association’s highest community service award, the Chief Justice Robert Benham Award for Community Service, in 1998. Atlanta Magazine voted Arrington “One of Atlanta’s Top 25 Lawyers” in 1983, and he was recognized as being among Georgia’s “Legal Elite” of peer-selected top attorneys by Georgia Trend Magazine in 2012.

Massell served for eight years on the Atlanta Board of Aldermen before making history as Atlanta’s first Jewish mayor in 1970, a post he held until 1974. His legacy includes helping launch the Metropolitan Atlanta Rapid Transit Authority (MARTA), building the Omni Coliseum (Atlanta’s first enclosed arena) and Woodruff Park. Massell also pioneered opportunities for minorities in city government, appointing the first woman to the Atlanta City Council and the first African-Americans as municipal department heads.

Bond reiterated his appreciation and respect for both men.

“My father [civil rights activist Julian Bond] and [former U.S. Congressman] John Lewis campaigned for Sam Massell. Marvin Arrington and my parents were all close friends,” said Bond. “I have long admired both of these men. Both served as mentors to me. It is humbling for this council to be a part of this historic honor.”

Atlanta City Council Passes Resolutions to Rename Current and Old Council Chambers was originally published on atlantadailyworld.com

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