Paul Tankersley was sworn in as the city of Madison Ward Four alderman at the regular meeting of the board on Tuesday, January 7, replacing Steve Hickok. Hickok stepped down after holding the position for more than 20 years.
Tankersley was the sole candidate who filed to run to fill the vacant seat. He will serve as Ward Four alderman for two years, as the end of this municipal term is 2021.
He is retired, previously serving as the Mississippi general network manager for Bellsouth. Before settling in Madison, Tankersley worked in various places including Florida, Kentucky, north Alabama, among others.
His job brought him to Mississippi, but he and his family moved to Madison in 1995 primarily because of the reputation of the school system.
In every place that he has lived in over the years, Tankersley has always sought a way to connect with the community and serve those around him, from volunteering with Lions Club to directing baseball tournaments.
“Everywhere I have lived, I have been involved in the community to some extent,” Tankersley said.
In Madison, he is the board of trustee’s president for Madison County Nursing Home and the chairman of the Madison Organization of Neighborhood Associations (MONA), which he helped found and has served as chairman since 2005.
He has also served on the Northbay board since 2000.
“I love Madison, and I’m pleased with the directions Madison has gone all the time that I’ve lived here,” he said. “And that’s all due to excellent leadership, so it is exciting to me to be a part of it.”
In fact, Tankersley credits much of the city’s success to the leadership of Mayor Mary Hawkins Butler and aldermen.
“I think Madison’s focus has been on families, and that is the right focus,” he said. “In Madison, there has been the right kind of growth, and I would like to see that continue.”
It is unclear whether Tankersley will continue as the MONA chairman, but if he decides to step down, he said MONA board members would choose his successor.
He said he brings experience to the position, as well as established connections with city leadership, as well as members of the community.
“I really think I will be able to go right to work,” Tankersley said.