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Tam announces he will not seek re-election to Forsyth County commission

SOUTH FORSYTH — The Forsyth County commission will be without its longest serving member next year.

Commissioner Brian Tam, whose District 2 covers a large area of south Forsyth, announced Monday afternoon that he will not be seeking re-election for the post that he has held since 2004.

“I’ve been at it 12 years, and I just think this is a good stopping point,” Tam said. “I’d like to spend more time with my family, and I am in the process of growing my businesses, so I’d like to dedicate more time to that next year.”

He was first elected for the 2005-08 term, and re-elected in 2008 and 2012.

Tam said the county has made progress during his time on the five-member governing body.

“There’s a number of things I’m very proud of,” he said. “We’ve been able to work together as a board and produce a great parks and recreation system. We were able to formulate, really a first-of-its-kind relationship with [the Georgia Department of Transportation] to ensure the widening of Ga. 400.

“[I was glad] to work with other elected officials to put in necessary infrastructure such as the courthouse and the new jail.”

Tam thanked county employees for success achieved during his service on the commission and said his goal was to open government for residents.

“We have a great county manager and department heads and a great county attorney,” he said. “We’ve been able to maintain some stability in the local government. I’m honored to serve and, really, serving is representing people.

“I’ve strived to involve the public and hear their desires and try and make the county the best it could be.”

Tam is the second Republican elected official in south Forsyth who has announced he will not be returning next year.

District 25 state Rep. Mike Dudgeon announced in January that he would not be seeking re-election due to the growth of his company.

Tam’s replacement likely will be decided this spring. Qualifying for the May 24 Republican primary opens next week.

In January, local business executive and investment adviser Rick Swope announced his intent to seek Tam’s seat. He is, so far, the lone candidate to announce.

A graduate of Purdue University, Tam has worked in the service industry for more than 25 years. He manages Tam’s Backstage in the lower level of the Cumming Playhouse and said he is planning to open a new restaurant this year.

Tam has served as a board member for the Forsyth Restaurant Group.

He and his wife, Kelly, attend Browns Bridge Community Church and have three children.