Political Notes – Jim Marshall will head Institute of Peace

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Former congressman Jim Marshall has been named the next president of the United States Institute of Peace, a federal agency that promotes programs to help manage conflict through nonviolent means and to maintain peace in post-conflict situations.

Marshall, who’s been a lecturer at Princeton University since losing his reelection bid in 2010, will start his new job Sept. 14, succeeding Richard H. Solomon, the former U.S. ambassador to the Philippines.

“As a decorated veteran of the Vietnam War, Jim has experienced firsthand the dire consequences of violent conflict,” said J. Robinson West, chairman of the institute’s board of directors. “As a member of the U.S. House of Representatives, he carefully navigated a course through the choppy waters of partisanship to build a solid record of bipartisanship.”

Marshall said he was “humbled, honored and pleased to join a talented and committed team whose mission is critically important to the United States and the world.”

Marshall was a Democratic Georgia congressman for eight years before he was defeated by Republican Austin Scott in 2010. He earlier was the mayor of Macon.

Deal takes European jaunt

Gov. Nathan Deal’s office announced the governor will lead an economic development junket that will spend the next two weeks visiting Switzerland and the Netherlands.

The Georgia delegation will include Economic Development Commissioner Chris Cummiskey, the governor’s wife Sandra Deal, and Swiss Consul-General to the Southeastern U.S. Claudio Leoncavallo.

Deal and his team will visit Zurich, Basel, Bern and Amsterdam, meeting with corporate representatives of Landis + Gyr, Novartis, Habasit and RWE in Switzerland, and Vanderlande, TenCate and Philips Electronics in The Netherlands.

This is the third of four business trips that Deal is making outside the U.S. this year.

Ethics tour commences

While the governor travels through Europe, Common Cause Georgia and other ethics revision advocates will be making their own swing across Georgia on a four-day, 14-city “Ethics Express” bus tour that starts Tuesday in Atlanta and ends Friday in Athens.

The ethics tour will visit Gainesville, Blue Ridge, Dalton, LaGrange, Columbus, Macon, Albany, Valdosta, Waycross, Brunswick, Savannah and Augusta.

Another record ports year

Georgia Ports Authority officials said fiscal year 2012 was another record year for the state’s ports facilities in the categories of total cargo tonnage, containers, and autos.

“Strong growth in breakbulk and auto cargoes complemented record volumes in total tonnage and container traffic,” GPA Executive Director Curtis Foltz said. “Georgia’s deepwater ports continued to attract additional cargo, and sustain and create jobs throughout this region.”

“To have the president of the United States acknowledge the importance of the Port of Savannah — its infrastructure improvement needs and the role it plays in the economic recovery of the Southeast — is significant,” said Foltz, referring to the Obama administration’s recent pledge to provide federal assistance for Savannah and other eastern ports.

Former Kennesaw State dean convicted

The former dean of Kennesaw State University’s college of education has been convicted by a Cobb County jury on two charges of false statements related to the cost of airline tickets

Yiping Wan was convicted last week on charges that he misrepresented the cost of airlines tickets to KSU between August 2005 and April 2006. Cobb Superior Court Judge Stephen Schuster sentenced Wan to five years probation under the first offender act and ordered him to pay $3,930 in restitution and a $2,000 fine.

Wan, who resigned from his KSU position in 2007, had arranged with a travel agent to buy airline tickets for three trips to China and pay more for the tickets than they actually cost. The travel agent reimbursed Wan the difference in cost and Wan submitted reimbursement requests reflecting the greater amount to KSU.

© 2012 by The Georgia Report

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Tags: Common Cause Georgia , Curtis Foltz , European junket , Georgia Ports , Jim Marshall , kennesaw state , Nathan Deal