A third generation Greenville neighborhood resident, Thomas Pops Adler helped turn the former slum into a stable, thriving neighborhood in the late 1980s and has maintained a presence ever since. Hes been instrumental in assisting some of Charlottes other impoverished neighborhoods, whether by applying for grant money or simply through his unique community teaching style. Neighborhood kids think of him as a second father, and hes been known to drop whatever hes doing to drive a car-less teen across town to make a work shift. Pops marching band, the glue thats held his Greenville neighborhood together, can be seen performing at various functions (parades, sporting events) throughout the year. Always deflecting the little praise hes gotten, Pops is a true community hero.
After her son Zachary was brutally beaten and murdered in April 2004, Jane Montognese was shocked to learn from prosecutors that they planned to plea bargain his attackers sentence down to a mere five years in prison. She dedicated the next two years of her life to publicizing the problems of the countys desperately overburdened justice system. Prosecutors eventually plea bargained Zacharys killers sentence to 15 years in prison, and city leaders began calling for more funding from the state. It now appears that the county will get 13 additional prosecutors and an extra judicial position from the state.