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Myrna Ballard has been President of the Valdosta-Lowndes County Chamber of Commerce since January 1997.  She was formerly Vice President for Economic Development for the Valdosta-Lowndes Chamber, Economic Developer for Quitman-Brooks County (Georgia), and Director of Economic Development for the Brazos Valley Development Council (Texas).  She has 32 years of experience in community and economic development.

Ballard is active in several community and professional organizations.  She serves as chairman of the South Georgia Workforce Development Board, is a member of the E3Z Birth-to-Eight Partnership and the Valdosta Early College Academy Board, is past president of the Valdosta Rotary Club, past president of the Valdosta Civic Roundtable, former member of the Valdosta Technical College Board of Directors, and past chairman of the board of the Georgia Association of Chamber of Commerce Executives. She has been married to Dr. Chet Ballard for 39 years.  They have lived in the Valdosta area since 1985.

Kristin Bernhard

Kristin Bernhard serves as Deputy Commissioner for System Reform at the Georgia Department of Early Care and Learning (DECAL), the state’s stand-alone education agency for children from birth through age five. At DECAL, she leads the implementation of the state's $51.7M Race to the Top Early Learning Challenge grant, as well as Quality Rated, the state’s Child Care Resource and Referral system, Georgia’s Early Head Start Child Care Partnership grant, and child care subsidy projects tied to the quality of the early learning setting. Prior to joining the DECAL team, she served as Governor Nathan Deal’s Education Policy Advisor. Kristin is a graduate of the University of Georgia and Georgia State University’s College of Law.  Kristin is a member of the State Bar of Georgia. She serves in leadership roles in the Junior League of Atlanta and on the board of directors of Graduation Achievement Charter High School.


J. Carl Campbell

J. Carl Campbell is the Executive Director of the Dalton Whitfield Joint Development Authority which provides assistance to companies considering the Dalton-Whitfield County area for their next investment location.  This can be in the form of a new business or the expansion of an existing business. Growing the economy and supporting education initiatives to improve the Northwest Georgia workforce are the goals of Carl’s daily activities. Prior to this role, Carl worked for the Georgia Department of Economic Development as a senior project manager and served a 15-county area in Northwest Georgia. Carl grew up in Dalton and looks forward to helping his hometown grow and prosper. His wife, Kristy, is an Instructional Coach in the Murray County School District. They have two sons and a daughter. 




Ed Chang is redefinED atlanta’s executive director. He founded KIPP STRIVE Academy in 2009 and later worked for the KIPP Foundation as director of coaching and succession strategy, where he redesigned their successor principal development program and provided direct coaching support for many of the principals and CAOs in the national network. Chang started his career as a physical therapist before joining Teach for America and serving as a founding teacher at Atlanta Charter Middle School. He completed the Building Excellent Schools Fellowship and the Fisher Fellowship. He holds a bachelor’s degree in biology and psychology and a master’s degree in physical therapy from Washington University in St. Louis. Chang holds a master’s degree in secondary science from Mercer University and a Certificate for Advanced Study in Educational Leadership from National Louis University.

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Mike Dudgeon

Mike Dudgeon is currently the Chief Technology Officer at Hi-Rez Studios. He previously served as the State Representative for District 25. While in office, he served as Vice Chair of the Education Committee, Secretary of the Energy, Utilities, & Telecommunications Committee, and on the Appropriations, Science & Technology, and Small Business committees. Prior to taking office, he served on the Forsyth County Board of Education. He holds bachelor's and master's degrees in Electrical Engineering from Georgia Tech, holds five U.S. patents, and has been in the technology business his entire career. Mike and his wife, Lori, have three boys ages 19, 17, and 15 and live in southern Forsyth County.


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Hannah Heck

Hannah Heck is an attorney.  She serves as the Vice Chairman of the Georgia Charter School Association and Vice Chairman of Westside Atlanta Charter School. She recently served on Governor Nathan Deal’s Education Reform Commission and its School Choice Subcommittee. She served as a policy advisor and as the Director of Policy for Georgia Governor Sonny Perdue. She previously served on the board of the Georgia Department of Community Health.  Previously, she worked as an Associate Attorney in the area of Regulatory Healthcare for the law firm of Alston & Bird LLP.  She received a B.A. in Psychology from Harvard College and her J.D. from Emory University School of Law.



Jack Parish has over 39 years of experience in K-12 and higher education.  He has served as a teacher, assistant principal, human resources director, assistant superintendent, and superintendent.  During his eight years in higher education, Dr. Parish served as a faculty member in the educational leadership department and as Associate Dean for Outreach and Engagement in the University of Georgia’s College of Education.  He is currently working with Coastal Plains Education Charter High School.  He is a past-president of the Georgia School Superintendents Association (GSSA), he has served as the Executive Director of the Georgia Association of Educational Leaders (GAEL), and he is a past member of the Georgia Partnership for Excellence in Education board of directors.  Dr. Parish earned his doctoral degree from the University of Georgia. He and his wife, Ashley, live in St. Simons.




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Jodie Snow

Jodie Snow currently serves as the Chief Operating Officer of the Abraham Baldwin Agricultural College Foundation, Inc. (ABAC Foundation).  She provides oversight of the ABAC Foundation and its subsidiaries; asset management for ABAC Foundation’s investments, endowments and real estate; and management and development of a 24- member board of directors. She received her Associate of Science degree from ABAC with highest honors and a Bachelor of Business Administration degree from the University of Georgia, where she graduated Summa Cum Laude.  She received a Juris Doctorate and a Masters of Business Administration from Stetson College of Law and Stetson University, respectively.  Prior to joining the ABAC Foundation, she served as Assistant State Attorney for the Second Judicial Circuit of Florida in Tallahassee and practiced civil litigation in South Florida. She is admitted to practice law in Georgia, Florida and in the Middle District of Florida federal court.

* Ex-officio