MACON, Ga. — You might be familiar with the Academy Awards and the Super Bowl, but a Macon-Bibb County employee picked up a big win at a statewide street sweeping competition.
Roderick Bell says he has always loved machines, so he took the job to be a street sweeper. Now he has the new title of 'award-winning street sweeper.'
"I am from Macon, you know Bibb County has always been my home. I am from east Macon as well," Bell said.
The streets of Bibb County have always been close to him, so it was only natural to work in his home.
"Seeking some type of adventure, I have always liked machinery, so I felt that it would be a good fit for me," Bell said.
Since 2005 Bell says he's cleaned the streets of Macon, but this year he accepted a new challenge.
"We went down there to a convention in Perry, Georgia, that they have every year to show off all the new equipment that they have," Bell said.
Bell went to the American Public Works Association's Georgia Chapter Conference with his crew. He never imagined what would happen next.
"We entered you into the sweeper competition, I was just like, 'huh.' He was like, 'are you going to get in or not?' I said, 'you already done entered me,'" Bell said
Bell didn't need any time to brush up on his skills. He got behind the wheel and navigated curbs, gutters, and backed the sweeper up into a certain spot.
"Standing out there, seeing it, it was nothing," Bell said.
Bell's confidence helped him win the statewide spot for street sweepers.
"He said, 'you must know I'm about to call your name.' I was like, 'for real?' He was like, 'you won.' I was like, 'aw man, aw man,'" Bell said.
Director of Public Works Marvin Land says it was no surprise Bell polished off the competition.
"Hard worker, good experienced street sweeper, which was shown in the competition," Land
Bell now has a trophy.
"Everybody who knows me knows I'm a little arrogant, and a little cocky, as it goes, I have been doing this for so long," he said.
Bell isn't the only person from the county who won, Richard Bullock won an award for Supervisor of the Year from the American Public Works Association's Georgia Chapter.