Deal appoints 13 to boards

January 8, 2016

Scott Berry, Board of Commissioners of the Sheriff’s Retirement Fund of Georgia (reappointment)
Berry has been the sheriff of Oconee County since his election in 1992. He previously worked for the Norcross Police Department and the University of Georgia Police Department. Berry served as the chairman of the Regional All Hazards Council, chairman of the Police Academy Advisory Board and president of the Georgia Sheriffs’ Association. He is a graduate of the Northeast Georgia Police Academy. Berry has one child and three stepchildren. He and his wife, Tammye, reside in Watkinsville. 

John Carter, Board of Commissioners of the Sheriff’s Retirement Fund of Georgia
Carter is the sheriff of Wayne County. He previously served as Deputy Sheriff and Chief Deputy. Carter is a second vice president of the Sheriff’s Youth Homes and a member of the Sheriff’s Association Budget and Auditing Committee. He earned an associate’s degree in Arts from Brewton-Parker College. Carter and his wife, Marcia, have two children and six grandchildren. They reside in Odum.

William Bagwell, Jr., Board of Natural Resources (reappointment)
Bagwell is a managing member of Homestead Investments. He also manages property for Northeast Georgia Real Estate and is involved in a family timber operation. While employed at the Greater Hall Chamber of Commerce, Bagwell held the offices of vice president of economic development, vice president of existing industry and vice president of government affairs. He is a deacon at First Baptist Church of Gainesville and a member of the Gainesville and Hall County Economic Development Council. Bagwell earned a bachelor’s degree in Political Science from Presbyterian College. He and his wife, Jennifer, have two children. They reside in Alto. 

Dwight Evans, Board of Natural Resources (reappointment)
Evans is a founding partner of the Pendleton Consulting Group. Prior to that, he was executive vice president and group president at Southern Company. Evans sits on the board of trustees at Piedmont College and the Georgia Tech Foundation. He has chaired the New Orleans branch of the Federal Reserve Board of Atlanta, the Southeast Electric Exchange, the Mississippi Economic Council, the Mississippi Partnership for Economic Development and the Mississippi Chapter of the Nature Conservancy. Evans earned a bachelor’s degree in Civil Engineering and a master’s degree in Environmental Engineering from Georgia Tech. He also earned a law degree from the Atlanta Law School. He and his wife, Sharon, have two children and six grandchildren. They reside in Stone Mountain.

James M. Hull, Board of Regents of the University System of Georgia (reappointment)
Hull is the managing member of Hull Property Group and the chairman of the Community Foundation of the Central Savannah River Area. Hull also sits on the boards of the REACH Foundation, Georgia Research Alliance, University System of Georgia Foundation, Medical College of Georgia Foundation, Augusta State University Foundation and America’s Warrior Partnership. He is a member of the board of visitors for Augusta University (AU) and the board of directors for the AU Health System. He and his wife, Karen, have four children. They reside in Augusta. 

Larry Walker, Board of Regents of the University System of Georgia (reappointment)
Walker is an attorney with Walker, Hulbert, Gray & Byrd. He served in the Georgia General Assembly for more than 30 years, including time as an administration floor leader for Gov. Joe Frank Harris and Majority Leader of the Georgia House of Representatives. Walker was the chairman of the State Legislative Leaders Foundation and was named to the “100 Most Powerful and Influential People in Georgia” list by Georgia Trend for 12 consecutive years. He represented the 8th Congressional District on the Georgia Department of Transportation Board. Walker earned a bachelor’s degree and a law degree from the University of Georgia. He and his wife, Janice, have four children and 10 grandchildren. They reside in Perry. 

Tommy Black, Ph.D., Georgia Composite Board of Professional Counselors, Social Workers, & Family and Marriage Therapists (reappointment)
Black is the owner and clinical director of Darsey, Black, & Associates. He has worked with numerous families to cope with a variety of mental health issues. Black earned a doctoral degree in Psychology. He and his wife, Trang, have two children. They reside in Midway.

Linda Blechinger, Georgia Peace Officer Standards and Training Council
Blechinger is the mayor of Auburn. Prior to her election, she was a manager in the defense manufacturing field and a member of the Auburn City Council. Blechinger is active in the Georgia Municipal Association and has received the organization’s Women in Municipal Government Leadership Award and the World Chamber of Commerce International Hero Award. She earned a bachelor’s degree in Theology. Blechinger and her husband, Daniel, have two children. They reside in Auburn.

Steve Smith, Georgia Peace Officer Standards and Training Council
Smith has been the Marshal of Richmond County for more than 28 years. He is an active member of the International Association of Chiefs of Police, the Georgia Association of Chiefs of Police. Smith also sits on the Georgia Public Safety Training Center Athens/Augusta Advisory Board and the Georgia Peace Officers Standards and Training Council Advisory Board. He and his wife, Toni, have two children. They reside in Augusta.

Don Thompson, Lookout Mountain Circuit Public Defender Advisory Panel
Thompson is an attorney and partner with Bruce & Thompson, LLC. He has practiced law in the Lookout Mountain Judicial Circuit for more than 17 years. Thompson earned a bachelor’s degree from Berry College and a law degree from the Cumberland School of Law. He and his wife, Erica, have one child. They reside in Summerville.

Jonathan Eisenstat, M.D., Office of Disability Services Ombudsman Medical Review Group
Eisenstat is the chief medical examiner for the Georgia Bureau of Investigation. He sits on local and national committees in a variety of areas such as organ donation and mass fatality preparedness. Eisenstat earned a bachelor’s degree from the University of California at Davis and a medical degree from the Sackler School of Medicine. His subspecialty training is in anatomic, forensic, pediatric, forensic neuro and cardiac pathology. Eisenstat and his wife, Ashli, have two children. They reside in Dunwoody.

William “Bill” Tanner, Private Colleges and Universities Authority
Tanner has practiced law for more than 50 years and is currently of counsel with the firm Webb, Tanner & Powell. Tanner is a past-president of the Gwinnett County Bar Association and sits on the advisory board of Wesleyan School. He earned a bachelor’s degree from Emory University and a law degree from the University of Georgia. Tanner and his wife, Cynthia, have two children and five grandchildren. They reside in Peachtree Corners.

Lisa Harris, State Board of Pharmacy
Harris is a pharmacist at DermaTran Health Solutions. She is a member of the Georgia Pharmaceutical Association, the International Academy of Compounding Pharmacists, Four Seasons Garden Club and Rome First United Methodist Church. Harris earned a bachelor’s degree in Pharmacy from the University of Georgia. She and her husband, Ray, have two children. They reside in Rome.