Atlanta, GA - Today Governor Brian P. Kemp named fifteen (15) appointments to five (5) boards and commissions, including the Georgia Department of Economic Development Board of Directors, Board of Community Affairs, State Board of the Technical College System of Georgia, Georgia Student Finance Commission Board of Commissioners, and Georgia Composite Medical Board.

"I look forward to working with these highly-qualified individuals from across our state as we continue to reform state government and put people ahead of politics," said Governor Kemp. "Together, we will ensure Georgia's best days are always ahead."

Georgia Department of Economic Development Board of Directors

Mark Bassford is the President of Bassford Companies, including Warehouse Rentals, Bassford Industrial Construction, and Bassford Packaging. Bassford oversees over nine million square feet of warehouse space, development of new industrial complexes in several southeastern markets, and a corrugated packaging manufacturing plant. After college, Bassford started a blueberry farm in Clinch County, giving him a keen appreciation for agribusiness and the industry’s importance to Georgia. He earned a bachelor’s degree from Valdosta State University, double majoring in Finance and Economics. Bassford has two children and resides in Valdosta. He will be sworn-in today.

Jake Carter graduated from the University of Georgia in 2003 with a degree in Business Management. After graduation, Carter returned to the family farm in McDonough and began transforming the dairy operation into the 330-acre agritourism destination that it is today. Carter also serves on the Board of Directors at Snapping Shoals EMC. He and his wife, Jennifer, are both Henry County natives who have been married for thirteen years. They have three children: Karson, Kennedy, and Coan. They are members of Bethany Baptist Church and reside in McDonough. He will be sworn-in today.

Jaclyn Dixon Ford is the Vice-President and Chief Operating Officer of Dixon Gin Co., Inc. and serves as the company’s Director of Commodities Marketing. From 2011 to 2017, Ford served on the Georgia Farm Service Agency State Committee, and she currently serves on the Board of Trustees for Abraham Baldwin Agricultural College and South Georgia Medical Center’s Berrien Campus Authority. Ford is an alternate on the Cotton Board, former delegate for the National Cotton Council, and current Fundraising Chair for the Berrien Touchdown Club. Ford received her bachelor’s degree in Agriculture from the University of Georgia, and she is also a graduate of Leadership Georgia. Ford is a member of Alapaha Baptist Church where she is involved in the children’s ministry. Ford and her husband, Jake, have two children and reside in Alapaha. She will be sworn-in today.

T. Dallas Smith is the Founder and CEO of T. Dallas Smith & Company, the largest African-American owned commercial real estate brokerage in the country focused exclusively on tenant and buyer representation. Smith began his commercial real estate career in 1982 under the guidance of Thomas W. Tift. In 1989, he became the first African-American broker at Cushman & Wakefield of Georgia. In 1995, he pioneered the brokerage division of H.J. Russell & Company where he served as VP of the Brokerage Division until opening his own firm in 2006. Since its inception, the T. Dallas Smith & Company team has successfully led transactions totaling more than $15 billion in aggregate value. Dallas is an innovator and thought leader, cultivating and developing diverse talent to help shape the commercial real estate industry. He currently serves as the Chair of the Real Estate Committee for the Georgia State University Foundation Board, and he is a member of the Council for Quality Growth Board, the Atlanta Commercial Board of REALTORS, and the Georgians First Commission. Dallas was recognized as Atlanta’s Most Admired CEO in 2017, Atlanta Commercial Board of Realtors' Realtor of the Year in 2018, and Empire Board of Realtists' Broker of the Year in 2018. Smith is a proud graduate of Georgia State University with a bachelor's degree in Business Administration - Management. He is a devoted husband and father of three who resides in Atlanta. He will be sworn-in today.

June Wood has a distinguished record of public service who was elected as Henry County Commission Chair in January 2017. Wood has been active in the Henry County community for many years in various civic, educational, and business endeavors, and she previously enjoyed a successful career for more than twenty-six years with Georgia Power, retiring in 2013 as Georgia Power’s Metro South External Affairs Manager. In addition to her role as Commission Chair, Wood is Chair of the Henry County Board of Health and serves on the Atlanta Regional Commission’s Traffic and Air Quality Committee. She serves on the Atlanta Regional Commission’s Governance Committee and the Board of the Metropolitan North Georgia Water Planning District. Wood and her husband, Michael, reside in McDonough. They have two daughters and five grandchildren. She will be sworn-in on Thursday, May 23.

Board of Community Affairs

Steve Broadbent is a Managing Director at Fulcrum Partners LLC, one of the nation’s largest independent executive benefit consulting firms. Broadbent is also a Council Member with the City of Johns Creek and serves as Vice Chairman of the Development Authority of Fulton County. Broadbent earned his bachelor’s degree in Nuclear Engineering from the University of Virginia and graduate degrees from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and George Washington University. Broadbent is a retired U.S. Navy Commander, having served for twenty-two years in active and reserve roles. He currently resides in Johns Creek. He will be sworn-in on Thursday, May 23.

Joyce Stevens owns Stonebridge & Stevens Properties and a farming operation located in Good Hope. Stevens and her late husband, John, owned and operated Stonebridge Western Treasures, a western art gallery located in Madison. They worked together at The Stevens Group, a business consulting company, for twenty-five years. Stevens previously served as Executive Director of the Georgia Republican Party and Vice-President of Sales, Marketing, and Operations at Del-Cook Lumber Company. Stevens also owned and operated Ten-Four, Inc., a wholesale lumber operation. Stevens is a founding board member and past President of Walton County Boys & Girls Club. She currently resides in Good Hope. She will be sworn-in on Thursday, May 23.

State Board of the Technical College System of Georgia

Carvel Lewis is the owner of Lewis Mortuary II located in Georgetown and serves as a member of the Civic League and Quitman County School Parent Teacher Organization. Lewis is also a Trustee and the Director of Christian Education at St. Stephen AME Church. This year marks his third year serving as Chairman of the Board of Commissioners for the Unified Government of Georgetown-Quitman County. Lewis earned a bachelor’s degree from Hampton University where he double-majored in Biology and Political Science. He resides in Georgetown. He will be sworn-in on Thursday, May 23.

Dr. Artesius Miller is the Superintendent of Utopian Academy for the Arts in Ellenwood. Miller is recognized as a visionary leader in K-12 education who founded Georgia's first state-approved charter school following recreation of the State Charter Schools Commission. As a product of the urban public school system and an Atlanta native, Miller knows firsthand the academic and economic disparities challenging metro-area classrooms. His charter school, Utopian Academy, takes a no-excuses approach to teaching and learning among its largely economically disadvantaged population, and his academic strategies have helped Utopian scholars outperform Clayton County middle schools in all subject areas. A recipient of a prestigious Gates Millennium Scholarship, Miller has a bachelor’s degree in Economics from Morehouse College, a master’s degree in Education Leadership from Teachers College at Columbia University, and a doctorate degree in Educational Administration and Policy from the University of Georgia. Miller is an adjunct professor of Education at Morehouse College, and he resides in Atlanta. He will be sworn-in on Thursday, May 23.

Lisa Winton is a business owner and community leader. She is passionate about helping others and a STEM education and workforce development advocate. In 1997, Winton and her husband George founded Winton Machine Company, which designs and builds tube and semi-rigid coax fabricating machinery. Winton serves as an advisory member for the Collins Hill High School STEM Program and Career and Technical Education Committees. Winton is currently serving as a Gwinnett Chamber and Partnership Gwinnett Board Member. Winton is also a member of the Gwinnett Shelter Fund Development Committee for Partnership Against Domestic Violence. Winton is a past president of Junior League of Atlanta. Winton is a University of Florida graduate with a degree in Business Administration. She and her husband live in Lawrenceville where they raised their two young adult children, Amanda and Andrew. She will be sworn-in on Thursday, May 23.

Georgia Student Finance Commission Board of Commissioners

Edward Pease is Principal of Oak Hall Companies, LLC, a real estate development and investment firm. Pease is a seasoned and successful commercial real estate investor and developer with a proven track record of market analysis, site selection, pre-development, permitting, construction coordination, governmental issues, leasing, and tenant relationships. Pease has more than two decades of experience investing in and developing freestanding retail developments, shopping centers, and specialty medical centers. Pease has served on several boards in the Atlanta area, and he currently serves on the boards for World Mission Partners and Champions Community Foundation. He currently resides in Johns Creek. He will be sworn-in on Thursday, May 23.

David Perez serves as Chief Operating Officer for the Carroll Organization, a national multi-family owner and operator. As part of his duties, Perez oversees operational, managerial, and support positions for the company, empowering the organization to achieve its business objectives and strategies. Perez knows Atlanta well after growing up in Peachtree Corners, and he is a graduate of the University of Georgia’s Terry School of Business with a bachelor’s degree in Finance and a Leadership Certificate from the Institute for Leadership Advancement. Mr. Perez is a 2012 graduate of the LEAD Atlanta Leadership Program, a former member of the Sandy Springs Conservancy, and an Eagle Scout. He resides in Sandy Springs with his wife, Brooke, and four children. He will be sworn-in on Thursday, May 23.

Thad Thompson is a proud Georgian and life-long resident of Norcross. Thompson is married to Emily, and they welcomed their first child, Mary Frances, last November. Thompson is an active member of Mt. Carmel UMC where he enjoys working with the youth group. A graduate of Young Harris and Georgia College, Thompson runs a financial planning practice with his best friend and his wife. Spending time with family, being outdoors, playing golf, and working in the community are what he enjoys most. He will be sworn-in on Wednesday, May 22.

Georgia Composite Medical Board

Dr. Despina D. Dalton is Vice President of Medical Affairs and a physician advisor with Wellstar Health System. Dalton began her career as a pediatric emergency physician in 1992. She lives in Powder Springs with her husband, Shawn, and their children: Kathryn, Harrison, and Alexander. She will be sworn-in on Thursday, May 23.

Dr. Matthew West Norman is a psychiatrist with Psychiatric Associates of Georgia. Norman holds a medical degree from Mercer University School of Medicine, and he was a Chief Resident in Psychiatry and a Fellow in Forensic Psychiatry from 2000-2002. Norman and his wife, English, live in Atlanta with their children: Reese, Owen, and Jane Ellen. He will be sworn-in on Thursday, May 23.

Contact Information:

Cody Hall, Press Secretary [email protected]