2022 Citizen of the Year
December 30, 2022
A Few Good Men, Inc. proudly selects Franco McGee as Citizen of the Year for 2022.
Nominated by numerous individuals and organizations, Mr. McGee receives this honor due to his exemplary leadership and community service. A lifelong resident of Monroe, North Carolina, he focuses his efforts in Union County. Whether sitting at a political table, partnering with various businesses and organizations, pounding the volunteer pavement, or mentoring those who need or seek his guidance, Franco endeavors to empower the powerless and give voice to the voiceless by advancing democracy beyond the voting booth. He leads with his heart and unapologetically challenges the status quo to build power and nurture deep relationships with other grassroots principals, making him an effective transformational leader.
Mr. McGee's four-year tenure as a City Council Member for the City of Monroe is nothing short of ideal. His vision for political equity comprises inclusion and mindfulness of the community at large – a vision he manifested at every council meeting, in every action taken, and in every decision made. A vision necessary for Franco, a change agent, to produce community engagement throughout the democratic process and historical advancements that
acknowledge and honor the disenfranchised. As a councilman, he spearheaded the unanimous adoption of Juneteenth as a paid holiday in Monroe and influenced other neighboring municipalities to conform. He also played a significant role in partnering with the community to organize the first-ever outreach golf clinic at Monroe Country Club for young Black and Brown golfers.
1 Mr. McGee joins a prestigious list of former winners: J.W. McDow, 2003; Annie Jordan Allen, 2004; Rosa Bell, 2005; Oscar White, 2006; Ralph Bolden, 2007; Herman Cunningham, 2008; Louisiana Robinson, 2009; Jeanette Sherrod, 2010; James Mungo, 2011; Johnny Sowell, 2012; Franklin Deese, 2013; Rev. Larry Leak, 2012; Minnie Crowder, 2013; Diane Burns, 2014; Rev. Waymon S. Jordan, Sr., 2015; Ernest Collins, 2016; Hattie Gail Coffey, 2017; Nathan Hailey, 2018; and Joan Laverne White, 2019. A Few Good Men, Inc. did not bestow the Citizen of the Year award on anyone in 2020 or 2021 during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Mr. McGee has spent his entire life and career as a forward thinker who creates space for social equity in Monroe. Whether in his role as Downtown Coordinator or Park and Recreation Supervisor, he has successfully initiated partnerships with South Piedmont Community College, Wingate University, and other community agencies to rebrand Downtown Monroe by adding inclusive activities that attract diversity to Main Street. He also volunteers to organize voter drives and serve at various charities, such as Union County Christmas Bureau and Serve Unity Outreach, to level the playing field for the entire community.
By far, Mr. McGee's fondest aim at social equity involves his work with local youth. Having graduated from Monroe High School, and studied engineering at North Carolina State University, He is determined to lead the next generation of Union County Public School students to great heights. He has spent nearly three decades encouraging our youth to dream big and transform their dreams into reality. He tutors students in math at Benton Heights Elementary School, his alma mater; has coached students in basketball at Parkwood High School; and has served as the Center Director at Sutton Park Recreation Center. Franco continues to mentor many students and young adults throughout Union County and remains a life coach to some who are now adults.
As a change agent, forward thinker, and transformational leader, Mr. McGee has earned tremendous respect from his students, colleagues, and community. A Few Good Men, Inc. is honored to join the club by presenting him with this year's citizenship award.
We will hold a banquet to honor Mr. Franco McGee on Saturday, March 11, 2023, at 7:00 PM, at the Old Armory Community Center at 500 S. Johnson St., Monroe NC. Ticket prices are $35 per individual and $200 for a table of six.