• 52°

PJ Ricks: “We have got to do something in our community”


P.J. Ricks

SALISBURY — Patricia Jones Ricks, better known as PJ Ricks, taught every age group from pre-kindergarten to high school when she was a teacher in Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools.

After spending nearly 20 years in the school system and learning what her kids needed, she became a counselor in the late 1980s.

She retired from her job as a counselor in 2005 and has served on city and community boards ever since, from the Salisbury Planning Board to the Rowan Helping Ministries board of directors.

Now, Ricks says it’s time for her to run for City Council.

Asked why she feels the time is right, Ricks said, “We have got to do something in our community.”

“Right now, we have some issues — as does any community. As does the nation, for that matter,” Ricks said. “But we have some issues and we need a strong City Council that will work together with the community and get things done that will move our community forward.”

Ricks said one way to move forward is to talk with people she called “gatekeepers” — residents who are “in the know.”

“We can’t go in and tell people, ‘This is what you have to do. This is the way to do it.’ We need to talk with our citizens, find out what they need, what they want and how to help them, and go from there to make plans from what they say,” Ricks said.

She said her principal concern, should she be elected, will be to create safer neighborhoods.

“I know the neighborhoods; I know our problems. I can communicate, I can talk with — not at — our citizens,” Ricks said.

Ricks, 72, said the city needs to take a “strong, hard look at Fibrant” and make sure that the Police Department is fully staffed.

Contact reporter Jessica Coates at 704-797-4222.



RSS superintendent talks district’s future, strategic plan survey


Complaints and fines pile up against unpermitted landfill in southwest Rowan County


Catawba baseball: Crowd comes out to say goodbye to Newman Park


History is a great teacher: Farming has helped shape Rowan County


‘A safe place for them’: Timeless Wigs and Marvelous Things celebrates fifth anniversary

China Grove

County will hear request for more tree houses, hobbit-style homes in China Grove


Livingstone College partners with Health Department to administer 500 Pfizer vaccinations


‘Elite and it shows’: Staff at Partners in Learning at Novant celebrate news of national accreditation


Biz Roundup: Food Lion earns Energy Star award for 20th consecutive year


Ester Marsh: What body type are you?


The queen says goodbye to Philip, continues her reign alone


Worldwide COVID-19 death toll tops a staggering 3 million


US, China agree to cooperate on climate crisis with urgency


Sikh community calls for gun reforms after FedEx shooting

High School

North Rowan romps into second round of football playoffs


FBI had interviewed former FedEx employee who killed eight


Gastonia man sentenced for crash into restaurant that killed his daughter, daughter-in-law


Some call for charges after video of police shooting 13-year-old in Chicago


State unemployment rate falls to 5.2% in March


NASCAR approach to virus vaccine varies greatly


Judge rejects Cherokee challenge against new casino in Kings Mountain


Jackson tops NC Senate fundraising; Walker coffers also full


Kiwanis Pancake Festival serves thousands of flapjacks for charity


Rowan remains in state’s middle, yellow tier for COVID-19 community spread