Amid the COVID-19 pandemic, Schmitz has dedicated his time and charity to feeding programs.
“We have a great food bank here, but our small communities don’t,” he said.
Schmitz has partnered with other organizations and civic groups to distribute non-perishable food items to 11 communities surrounding Dothan. Recently, Schmitz and his family provided approximately 5,000 hot meals served by local food trucks to veterans – a special cause for Schmitz, whose adoptive family served in the military.
“I have to stay busy and hopefully be productive and make a difference,” Schmitz said.
While he was chairman of the school board, schools in the town of Dothan underwent a massive restructuring effort led by then-superintendent Phyllis Edwards, an out-of-state hire under the direction of Schmitz. Despite his abrupt resignation last year and the ensuing lawsuit against the school board, Schmitz does not regret offering him the job.
“I believe back then, and now, she was the right person at the right time,” Schmitz said. “Because we looked at our system back then, we had far too many failed schools; our financial situation had been in trouble for years.
During his tenure, the council looked at school safety, increased technical career offerings, and made numerous upgrades to existing school buildings, correcting issues that had been overlooked for many years.