YEAR IN REVIEW: All Stars win Dixie World Series; St. James Hotel boarded up; Selma Schools superintendent hired
Published 6:43 pm Thursday, December 28, 2017
Through Saturday, the Times-Journal will be looking back at the top stories of 2017. Here’s a look at memorable stories from July-September.
TEEN CHARGED WITH CAPITAL MURDER IN DRIVE-BY
A Selma teenager was charged with capital murder after a 17-year-old died in a drive-by shooting July 3. Christopher Alan Dailey was shot and killed on Washington Street in broad daylight around lunchtime. Markel Collins was charged with capital murder the same day. Murder warrants were later signed for 23-year-old Jamarius Shaw, 19-year-old Mitchell Williams and 18-year-old Ceddarius Williams.
BASKETBALL COACHES BECOME PRINCIPALS
Former basketball coaches Cedric Brown, Tommy Tisdale and Willie Moore were named principals of Southside, Keith and Dallas County high schools, respectively.
SELMA NATIVE MAKES HISTORY WITH NATIONAL GUARD
Major General Sheryl Speed Gordon, who was born and raised in Selma, made history in July by being appointed adjutant general of the Alabama National Guard, the first woman to hold that title.
15U ALL STARS WIN WORLD SERIES
The Selma 15U All Stars won the Dixie Baseball World Series in July. It had been 45 years since a team from Selma won the World Series.
CITY SETTLES ST. JAMES LAWSUIT
The city of Selma settled a lawsuit for $30,000 with a company that tried to buy the St. James last year. Janee Hotel Corporation filed the suit for breach of contract after the city backed out of the deal after information on the company’s president, which included criminal charges of identity theft, was published in a Times-Journal article.
NEW SELMA SUPERINTENDENT NAMED
The Selma Board of Education hired Avis Williams, assistant superintendent for Tuscaloosa City Schools, to lead the city system in September. A $140,000 base salary contract was approved later in the month.
ST. JAMES DEAL FALLS APART
A deal to sell the St. James to hotelFUBU fell apart in September. Negotiations between the company and the city had been ongoing since January. However, the contract to sell the hotel expired after the company couldn’t come up with funding to purchase the hotel and renovate it. The hotel was soon boarded up later the same month.
LOCKETT RETIRES FROM ARTSREVIVE
Martha Lockett announced her plans to retire from executive director of ArtsRevive at the end of the year. She had been served as executive director since 2012 and guided the organization through major capital and constructions campaigns. Becky Youngblood follows her in that role.
IP ANNOUNCES MAJOR INVESTMENT
International Paper announced plans to invest $300 million to convert its Riverdale Mill in Selma from producing copier paper to whitetop board used in packaging. The conversion will take about 12 months to complete and will be completed in 2019.
TREASURER FIRED AND BROUGHT BACK
Selma Mayor Darrio Melton fired City Treasurer Ronita Wade in September saying she was insubordinate and he didn’t trust her. She denied those charges and said she was punished for not supporting Melton politically. The Selma City Council voted to reinstate Wade; however, Melton, placed her on paid administrative leave two days later, where she has been ever since.