Councilman Alfonza “Al” Brown, Sr. was raised in Winder and graduated from Glenwood High School in 1970, and was actually part of the last graduating class before the school desegregation. After graduating high school, he attended Fort Valley State University in Georgia and graduated with a BBA with a focus in management.
If you’ve met Al, you know him to be a soft-spoken and kind man. He lives to serve others, and his inspiration comes from those he serves. Having a mentor in his life like Lafar D. Sims, the former Principal of Glenwood High School, has also helped to instill Al’s strong family and faith values. “Mr. Sims was a great mentor of mine. His demeanor, how he spoke and carried himself—he provided me great advice on how to live in harmony and respect,” says Al of his mentor.
Al has been a full-time volunteer for the past 15 years, and prior volunteering was in management at Solectron Manufacturing, formerly in Braselton, GA.
“When I see the humbleness, and gratitude, and the joy they (those he serves) have, it provides me a great feeling of accomplishment and pride to do better—and more,” says the full-time volunteer. You may ask Al why he chose to get involved in politics, and his response is that he strives to be a liaison between the political world and the everyday citizen, and wants to make a difference in his community. As councilman, he also sits on the Public Safety Committee and the Finance and Benefits Committee.
Al has been married to his wife, Sandra, for more than 40 years, and they share a son, Alfonza, Jr. Before his family grew, Al traveled with the band The Allman Brothers as the personal assistant to the band’s drummer, Johanny Johanson, also known as Jaimoe. “We were called peace children back then,” says Al. “Non-violent people with long side burns and dressed like Jimi Hendrix. Music was the only thing.”
Aside from music, Al enjoys fishing in his spare time and volunteering, particularly at the Food Pantry and helping those in need. His life’s motto, “You’re not here for yourself. You are here to serve others,” runs deep within him and believes we should all stand up for what we believe in.