Muddessar Ahmad Running for Chair of Board Of Commissioners
Muddessar Ahmad, a Pakistani native, came to America in January 2001. It was a challenging move for a young man trying to find his place in the world, having only $2,200.00 in his pocket and almost no English in his vocabulary. Yet he was determined not to give up on his desire to embrace the “American Dream” and build a better life for himself and his family.
Though he attended college and graduate school studying economics, his first job was a very entry-level position at a Baltimore, MD, gas station. Ahmad was used to hard work and was determined to work even harder here. Although the journey has been peppered with many challenges, you will not find him complaining; instead, he is grateful for every opportunity and proud to be an American Citizen. In an article titled Everyday Heroes: Muddessar Ahmad and running in many Metro Atlanta newspapers (Atlanta Journal-Constitution, Rockdale CitizenJacksonville Progress, and Clayton News, for example), was quoted saying, “The United States is a wonderland from all the outside world, and it’s a dream come true for not only me but most immigrants, This is the best country to live.”
He made his way from Baltimore to Conyers, GA, in June 2003. Owning his own business was always his dream, and he had an opportunity to enter the oil and gas business in this new location. His pockets held little money, but he pooled what he did have with friends and purchased a small, troubled gas station on West Avenue. The location was the previous home of a shell station closing just six months prior. Soon Ahmad and his friends, now business partners, were open for business and at home – literally, as he and one of the business partners shared a 24-hour schedule and a cot in the back room. Open around the clock; two cots were unnecessary as someone was always working while another rested.
In a new place, much different from his American experience thus far, there was no network of friends, no surrounding family, and very little community support. Nonetheless, this place would win his heart and soon paint a much different picture for his life. “I remember how Mayor Charles Walker mentored me and how Mr. Gregory B. Levett, Sr. would stop by, acquaint himself and then take the time to walk me through the community. I met some wonderful people through this process who not only welcomed me but supported the store through their patronage. They never left me. And they never let me down.”
Ahmad recalls the long hours when pennies were tight and every pinch was felt. As two gentlemen manned their West Avenue location, the third partner maintained a full-time job in case the venture met additional challenges or failed to succeed. Not only did the business not fail – it grew into 19 gas stations serving 19 Georgia counties and five major oil companies. But even though there were many stations in many counties, Ahmad’s heart had been captured by the Rockdale community, and it was in this community that he would continue to build relationships and serve others. “The West Avenue experience fortified my desire to remain in Rockdale. The citizens made me feel welcome and never treated me differently; I’ve never regretted being a part of this community.”
Ahmad is no longer in the gas and oil business but is the founder and owner of Omega Builders. It is a real estate company owning various properties, including strip malls or shopping centers, warehouses, office buildings, and residential real estate. It is also the catalyst of many opportunities allowing him to pour into the community that he loves.
Why Am I Running?
Ahmad’s answer is simple and heartfelt when asked why he has chosen to run for the Chairman’s seat.
“I came to Conyers in 2003, a virtual nobody, opening my first business. I want to give back to the community that willingly gave to me, and now is the perfect time to do it. This community owes me nothing, but I owe it everything. What better way to give back than by offering myself as a public servant!”
Economic development is more than increasing the job market. It is creating a sustainable environment for businesses (large and small) to thrive, cultivating those benefits for the families and residents of our community, and enhancing the quality of life throughout the county.
Cleaner spaces send stronger messages.
When the community works to clean up – the cleaner community works for its people.
Investing in the upkeep of our county, in addition to the ability to further attract growth and development opportunities, is an investment in its members and their mental, physical, and economic well-being.
Managing and multiplying our resources begins with wise decision-making. Defining operating parameters and identifying priorities will create more effective spending practices. Our county finances must be well budgeted, our expenses streamlined as well as closely monitored, and our resources utilized to create additional opportunities for continued progress.
Respect and Responsibility.
Muddessar Ahmad understands that responsibility for the health, safety, and welfare of our citizens should be the primary concern of the Board of Commissioners and Chairman. Concentrating on economic development, a clean county, and wise spending touches every aspect of that responsibility; Ahmad is willing to carry that responsibility, and Rockdale County, forward. He has a strong desire to serve this community and hopes that his service will be a catalyst to foster respect and genuine care among this community (our community) and all of its members.
Realizing Our Potential.
Rockdale County is a great place to be. It is the place where families, relationships, and businesses are built. Working together as a community, we can begin to realize our full potential growing stronger and better with each step. Putting forth a concerted effort for economic development, a cleaner community, and wise spending, we will not only make a difference but also experience the benefit of its impact.