GUYTON — Meketa Brown may have found the perfect job. It requires a great deal of multi-tasking, which is something she learned a lot about while spending more than a decade as a stay-at-home mom.
Early last month, Brown was hired as Guyton’s city clerk. Her last full-time position was at SunTrust where she served as a business banker in 2008.
“It was right after the financial crisis of 2008,” Brown said while recalling her reasons for taking a career break. “My husband had a job out of town, I had two boys who enjoyed football and a career that had goals and expectations, so I had to make a decision. I said, ‘I’m not going to kill myself. I need to go take care of my kids.”
Brown’s decision, made with her husband, paid off handsomely. Her academically gifted sons, Matthew and Malcolm, are walk-on football players at the University of Georgia.
“They are amazing young men,” she said. “God has been so good in helping me get them to be where they are. It wasn’t always easy.”
Brown has no regrets about her self-imposed exile from the workforce.
“I’m very proud of (my sons) and I wouldn’t trade the time with them to save my life,” she said. “I learned so much about them and myself during that 12-year period.”
While her boys were attending school, Brown was active in PTOs and booster clubs.
“The South Effingham school system was so good to me,” Brown said. “I (served as a substitute teacher) at all three schools on the south side — Marlow (Elementary School), South (Effingham) Middle (School) and South (Effingham) High (School) — right up until the time Malcolm graduated in May.
“I really enjoyed being around the students and teachers. I can’t say enough about the teachers in our school system. They rock and I love them all.”
Brown had to figure out what to do with her time after Malcolm departed for Athens, leaving her in an empty house.
“The saying, ‘The silence is deafening,’ is so true,” she said. “That was the big thing — the quietness. There was no (football) practice, no ball games, not stories.”
The silence was broken her hiring as city clerk.
“I saw the opening for last March or April, I believe, on a Facebook page,” Brown said. “I thought, ‘I can do that because I worked a little bit for the City of Savannah and, of course, I’ve done banking.”
Brown, hired Aug. 10, is set to attend Georgia Municipal Clerk training Sept. 12-14 in Athens.
“So I will go up there for (Georgia’s football game against Alabama) on Sept. 11 and go to class Sept. 12,” Brown said. “Hopefully, I will be back in town for the council meeting (Sept. 14). I’m not sure what time they will let us go.”
Brown is eager to confer with city clerks from around the state, especially those from towns similar to Guyton.
“My intent is to meet people from cities of like size and find out what they are dealing with and learn their best practices,” Brown said. “I want to bring that information back to the city manager and mayor. We will see what we have been doing right and what we can do better.”
Brown’s duties include maintaining city records, handling records requests and serving as elections superintendent.
“I think I can bring some stability to the place and give some answers,” Brown said. “That’s what I want to contribute. To bring stability, you need some order, some direction and some structure.
“As as a mom, we know how to do these things.”
Brown is eager to help citizens get the information they want and need in a timely fashion.
“I see that as my duty and my service,” she said.