Coverage of the West Georgia Open Government Symposium

In Uncategorized on February 23, 2015 at 9:00 am

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For complete coverage of the West Georgia Open Government Symposium by the Transparency Project of Georgia and the Georgia First Amendment Foundation can be found at:

The Symposium is the latest in a series of Open Government Symposiums being held throughout the state of Georgia.

Previous events have been held in Macon, Valdosta and Athens. The next event will be held in Savannah in early March.

The events differ from government training government on open government, and focus on the principles of transparency, open records and open meetings laws and best practices for local officials.

Bring Open Government Symposium to your area

Taxpayers, government officials, newspaper groups, civic organizations or others interested in bringing the open government training to your area, contact director Jim Zachary at:

Open Government Symposium coming to Douglasville

In Uncategorized on February 16, 2015 at 2:18 pm
DOUGLASVILLE — The Georgia Open Government Symposium series is coming to Douglasville.
The free events are being offered by the Georgia First Amendment Foundation and the Transparency Project of Georgia across the state and are incubating a culture of government transparency, according to organizers.
The event will be hosted by the Douglas County Tea Party and the Douglasville & Douglas County for Civic Action Facebook Page,  and will be held February 20. 
Jim Zachary, director of the Transparency Project of Georgia is joined by colleagues Holly Manheimer, director of the Georgia First Amendment Foundation and Hyde Post, president of GFAF for the symposiums, providing open records and meetings training, while sharing their experiences in open government advocacy.
Organizers are encouraging elected officials, government attorneys, records custodians, journalists, community activists, students and anyone who has an interest in transparency and more accountable government to attend.
“Open government is better government, and we think the climate for government transparency in Georgia needs to improve,” Zachary said. “We are not against government, but we are for taxpayers and ordinary citizens who are often frustrated when it comes to their access to records and meetings.”
The agenda for the symposium includes four sessions, beginning at 1 p.m.
• Open Records: It’s the Law
• Open Meetings: It’s the Law
• Why Government Transparency Matters
• Open forum and round table discussion
“We have had a great response from journalists, students and public officials who have attended symposiums in Macon and Valdosta and we hope the Douglasville event will give others the opportunity to further educate themselves on the principles of open government,” Zachary said.
Zachary has been a leading voice for government transparency in Georgia.
He was awarded the David E. Hudson Open Government Award this year and received the Georgia Press Association Freedom of Information Award in 2014 and 2013, along with statewide and national awards for editorial writing, reporting and public service during his journalism career in Georgia and Tennessee. He is the editor of the Valdosta Daily Times.
Manheimer began work as the first and only executive director of the Georgia First Amendment Foundation in Jan. 1996.  She graduated cum laude from Dartmouth College; received a Master’s in English from New York University; earned her Juris Doctorate from Emory University Law School; and received a Master’s in communication from Georgia State University.  When not serving the foundation, she practices law with Stuckey & Manheimer, Inc. and serves as a part-time judge of the DeKalb County Recorders Court.
The Open Government Symposium will be held Friday, Feb. 20 at 1 p.m.  at the Douglasville Police DeparSymposium_Hollytment located at 2083 Fairburn Rd., Douglasville, 30135.  While there is no registration fee, individuals or groups planning to attend are encouraged to RSVP by emailing

South Georgia Open Government Symposium set

In Uncategorized on November 16, 2014 at 4:11 pm

The South Georgia OPEN GOVERNMENT SYMPOSIUM will be held in Valdosta, Ga. Friday, Nov. 21, at the Lowndes County Administration Building.

Join TPOG Director Jim Zachary and GFAF President Hyde Post for three hours of training on government transparency, beginning at 9 a.m. in downtown Valdosta.

Hyde Post
Hyde Post

Jim Zachary larger
Jim Zachary

The Transparency Project of Georgia and Georgia First Amendment Foundation event is free and open to the general public.

This second in the statewide series of Open Government Symposiums is being hosted by the Lowndes County Board of Commissioners.

Free materials will be distributed.

Government officials, attorneys, staff, students, journalists, community groups and residents are encouraged to attend.

Email for info or to confirm your attendance.


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