Dr. George Liles, former Concord mayor, dies
Dr. George Liles, mayor of Concord from 1993 to 2001 and founder of the Community Free Clinic, has died at age 88.
Liles championed many causes that in Concord during his terms in office. Among his achievement were the adoption of non-partisan city elections, working to site what became Concord Mills and laying the groundwork for the construction of the Concord Convention Center by being an early advocate of the need for such a facility.
Due to his accomplishments, the Concord City Council recommended to the North Carolina Department of Transportation that the Concord portion of the Westside Bypass be named the George W. Liles Parkway. Today this is a major connector linking western Concord to I-85 at the exit 54 interchange.
“Dr. Liles led Concord through a period of much growth,” said Mayor Scott Padgett.
“He was a very progressive leader and a kind and compassionate person. He was an advocate for the development of Concord Mills, the Concord Convention Center and the Concord Regional Airport. These things and many more are a testament to his vision of Concord. I am proud that I had the opportunity to serve with him. He left Concord a much better place for his service.”
Mayor Pro Tem and Council Member Hector Henry served with Liles both as a physician and as a member of City Council.
“I will miss Dr. Liles. He was among the first people I met when I began practicing medicine in Concord. He was a friend, colleague, mentor and confidant,” Henry said. “Dr. Liles was superbly-trained as a surgeon and his arrival to Cabarrus Hospital was the foundation of the wonderful medical center we have today. He was a leader who had the drive to help people and thus led to his success as mayor. He was reluctant to accept the challenge of leading Concord, but had the vision of community needs. He excelled as mayor.
“George was a statesman and true gentleman. He will be remembered always for caring ó caring for his family, is patients and citizens”.
“On behalf of the Council, I offer our deepest condolences, sorrow and prayer to Jane Liles and the entire family. Dr. Liles was an integral part of the forces that have made Concord a great community,” Henry said.
“George has meant so many things to me,” said former city Alderman Frank Dusch. “He was a dear friend, my doctor on several occasions and a strong leader while we served together while on the Board of Alderman. All of us who served with George will miss him greatly.”
City Manager Brian Hiatt said, “When I came to Concord over 10 years ago I quickly learned why Mayor Liles was an icon in the community. He was amazing in that he did so much for so many community organizations during his medical career, and then topped that off by agreeing to take on such a time consuming leadership role as mayor. His legacy as an elected official is clear and it lives on through what Mayor Liles and the council achieved while he was in office.”
Liles’ funeral will be Monday at 11 a.m., at All Saints Episcopal Church in Concord, with the Rev. Fred Hoffman, the Rev. Roger Butler and the Rev. Edward Scott officiating.
A reception will be held at the church after the service, followed by a graveside service at Oakwood Cemetery, officiated by the Rev. Henry Long, nephew of Liles.
The family will receive visitors at the home of Jock and Betsy Liles, 691 Williamsburg Drive N.E. in Concord, on Sunday evening from 4 to 7 p.m.