Former mayor leaves legacy of love, leadership

Former Covington Mayor Bill Dobbs

Former Covington Mayor Bill Dobbs

COVINGTON — For 25 years, Dr. Bill Dobbs served the city of Covington as mayor. His legacy is one of love for the community and the people he served beside for so many years.

Dobbs died Sunday at Newton Medical Center due to complications after a fall.

Serving from 1970 to 1995, Dobbs worked diligently as mayor in the community of Covington.

“It was a pleasure to work with him on all occasions. He loved his family, church and community,” former City Manager Frank Turner said. “And he was loyal to them all. In his tenure, he did so many things with a calmness and reassurance that made everyone feel good. Whether it was replacing the street lights, improving the flow of traffic or handling the personnel within the city, he did it so well.”

Turner said Dobbs worked well with county government, which included working side by side with former councilman and county commissioner Billy Smith.

Smith said he was blessed to serve under a man who was so active in the city.

“I’ve known him for more than 50 years and it was an honor to be involved with the amount he’s done over the years,” Smith said. “His accomplishments include upgrading the fire and police departments but also playing a big role in recruiting industry into the city. His legacy left behind would be his love for the city and the people he was blessed to serve.”

Smith said his wife, Irene, and Dobbs both served on the Sister City program, which built relationships and partnerships between the city and Ballycaster, Northern Ireland.

Smith noted that although he only served as a councilman for two years while Dobbs was mayor, their working relationship continued when Smith served as a county commissioner.

“I really represented the city of Covington when I was elected commissioner so it gave us the opportunity to continue working on numerous projects,” Smith said.

Former councilman Sam Ramsey, who was later elected mayor, said Dobbs always had a level head and was a great person to go to if there was ever a problem.

“One of his main accomplishments was getting the council to work together as a group and have them united with the county,” Ramsey said. “I just thoroughly enjoyed working with him all that time. He and I saw eye-to-eye on most subjects, and we worked closely to develop the industrial park.”

Ramsey served with Dobbs on the planning commission and 10 years on the council.

“He’s someone that certainly will be missed. He was very level-headed and always tried to get a consensus with the council before we started any project,” Ramsey said. “He was a great leader who really brought people together.”

According to the Caldwell and Cowan Funeral Home, arrangements have not yet been finalized. When the funeral is set, more information will be available by calling the funeral home at 770-786-7062 or by visiting www.caldwellandcowan.com.