Deal names more members to transition team

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Nathan Deal has appointed more members of his gubernatorial transition team, a list dominated by lobbyists and elected officials.

The transition committee members announced Monday include House Speaker Pro Tem Jan Jones, Sen. Jeff Mullis (R-Chickamauga), and three outgoing legislators:  Sen. Chip Pearson (R-Dawsonville), Rep. Jerry Keen (R-St. Simons) and Rep. Melvin Everson (R-Snellville).

Pearson has formed a lobbying business and did not run for reelection; Keen is going to work for Troutman Sanders, a major lobbying firm; and Everson ran unsuccessfully for labor commissioner.

Lobbyists named to the Deal transition team are Dan Lee (a former state senator), Monty Veazey (a former House member), Rob Leebern, and Joe Tanner (a former labor commissioner and DNR chief).

Deal put his lawyer, Randy Evans, on the transition team, along with his daughter-in-law, Denise Deal, and the co-chair of his inauguration committee, Trisha Pridemore, the head of a Glenn Beck-affiliated conservative organization.

Former state senator Eric Johnson, who ran unsuccessfully for governor, is on the committee as well as Kit Dunlap of the Hall County Chamber of Commerce, Metro Atlanta Chamber Chairman Bill Linginfelter and Charles Tarbutton of the Sandersville Railroad Co.

Other committee members:

  • Tifton accountant Jimmy Allen, who granted interviews to the media during the election campaign declaring that “Nathan Deal is definitely not insolvent and will not declare bankruptcy.”
  • Dr. Brenda Fitzgerald, a board member of the Georgia Public Policy Foundation, a corporate-funded think tank (Rogers Wade, the foundation chairman, is also the chair of Deal’s transition team).
  • Neil Pruitt, a major Deal contributor and the head of UHS-Pruitt.
  • Wesley Smith, a North Georgia bank executive.
  • Michael Shaffer, a former aide to the late congressman Charlie Norwood.

© 2010 by The Georgia Report

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Tags: lobbyists , Nathan Deal , transition committee