Work allows Goodman to share her love of Vicksburg

Published 7:12 pm Tuesday, April 9, 2019

By Gabrielle Terrett

The Vicksburg Post

Sometimes the smallest voices make the greatest impacts.

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Deborah Goodman, an administrative assistant for the city of Vicksburg is an example. She usually doesn’t like to be recognized for her efforts, but her love for the city of Vicksburg overpowers her humility.

The Vicksburg native never thought she would end up doing the work she does now, but she is extremely satisfied with it.

Goodman serves as the community outreach coordinator for the mayor’s office, working as a liaison between the city and programs like the census, programs in the Kings community and other programs where city officials are involved in working with the city’s residents and community-based programs.

She was offered the job by Mayor George Flaggs Jr. after she retired from the U.S. Army Engineer Research and Development Center after 39 years — a career she began at the age of 19 as a student trainee and later a cooperative education student — the first from Jackson State University.

After graduation, Goodman said, “I went back and became a graduate co-op student because there was a hiring freeze when I graduated from college in 1984, and I started working as a technical information specialist for 39 years,” she said.

It soon became apparent that retirement wasn’t for her, and Goodman initially decided to go into teaching.

“I’d kept my teachers license from undergrad until 2015,” she said. “I started the school year with Vicksburg Junior High School, and when I got there I realized that time had passed me by. There was a lot that I was not accustomed to, like the jargon and some of the acronyms. So, I decided I wasn’t ready to teach right then.”

“It was then that Flaggs offered a position at City Hall.

“He knew that I wanted something to do and that I had a genuine love for the city of Vicksburg and the residents, and that I just liked being out of the house. He hired me as administrative assistant part-time in his office, which I thoroughly enjoy. I’m learning a lot more about politics.”

Although her position at City Hall keeps her busy, Goodman has not allowed her professional life to stop her from voluntarily serving the community. She volunteers her time through the numerous organizations that she is a part of in addition to simply helping people on her own.

“I was a member of Leadership Vicksburg back when I was employed with ERDC. I’ve done a lot of work with my sorority, Alpha Kappa Alpha, in our chapter Mu Xi Omega and I’m a member of the NAACP,” she said.

As a member of the NAACP, she is very active in the organization’s planning for the annual Martin Luther Kind Day program.

“A lot of the time when I do volunteer work I’d prefer that people not know that it was me, because I don’t want them to feel like I’m going to say something about it or that they have to reciprocate that action.”

Though she is a small part of the Vicksburg community, Goodman is always willing to go above and beyond for her community and she has no plans to stop.

“I feel blessed to work at Vicksburg and I feel blessed to work with people who genuinely care about our citizens. I just know how important it is for all of us to work together as a team to make Vicksburg better and to get the best out of Vicksburg.”