Memorial for Reginald Eaves, 1st black Public Safety Commissioner, at Ebenezer

Reginal Eaves, "Mr. Civil Rights." with legendary Atlanta Mayor Maynard Jackson.
Reginald Eaves, “Mr. Civil Rights.” left, then with legendary Atlanta Mayor Maynard Jackson.

ATLANTA — A host of friends, co-workers, and community leaders will gather to celebrate the life and times of their colleague and buddy, Asaph Reginald Eaves, who was Atlanta’s first Public Safety Commissioner, a Fulton County Commissioner, and a friend of the community he served. The  public memorial service and celebratory tribute is scheduled for Friday, June 26, 2015 at 11:00 AM in the Horizon Sanctuary of Ebenezer Baptist Church.
Reginald Eaves died at the age of 81 in Jacksonville on Tuesday, June 9, 2015.  A private family service was held in Mr. Eaves’ hometown of Jacksonville, Florida on Sunday, June 21.
Officiating the service will be Rev. Dr. Raphael G. Warnock, Senior Pastor of Ebenezer Baptist Church.  Rev. Jasper Williams, senior pastor of Salem Bible Church, Rev. Dr. Gerald Durley, pastor emeritus with Providence Baptist Church, and former Atlanta Mayor Shirley Franklin are among those scheduled to give tributes at the public commemorative service.
Eaves had distinguished himself in a political career in Boston before Maynard Jackson convinced him to move to Atlanta and to work in the early stages of the Maynard for Mayor campaign.  Reginald Eaves was the first Public Service Commissioner in the City of Atlanta [Black or White] and later served as a Fulton County Commissioner.  There were bumps in the road for Reggie – a sometimes
imperfect man; but he had a heart of gold and a dedication to make life better for the underserved in Atlanta.   He was fondly called, “Atlanta’s Top Cop.”  Eaves is credited with reducing violent crime in the city’s black neighborhoods;  Rolling Out reported – “his action, such as assigning foot patrols to high crime area and community policing, was ahead of its time and received coverage in Time magazine.”
After leaving public life, he became a prominent community activist in metropolitan Atlanta.
He gave so much more to this community through his volunteerism in organizations such as the Police Athletic League, Georgia Association of Black Elected Official, National Organization of Black Law Enforcement Executives, Concerned Black Clergy, and the Peoples Agenda.  He was a member of Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity.
Eaves legacy is alive and well in the hands of his nephew, John H. Eaves, Chairman of the Fulton County Commission.  Reggie is recalled hitting the streets to campaign with his nephew with a huge smile on his face.  “My uncle was the single most important person responsible for me going into politics. Dating back as a senior at Morehouse College in 1984, my uncle encouraged me to go into politics. From those days to his death, he was a great advisor, confidant, and supporter,” said Commissioner Eaves.


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