Irene Bloomfield is the vehicle distribution business and transportation manager at BMW of North America LLC. Bloomfield has 17 years of finance and logistics experience in the automotive industry, including 12 years of import-export experience in the retail sector. She has held various positions in finance and accounting at BMW, overseeing financial reporting, parts and warranty accounting. For the past five years, she has managed five vehicle distribution centers and is responsible for the ocean and VDC to dealer transportation in the U.S. Prior to BMW, Bloomfield performed public accounting at Deloitte and spent 12 years at Toys “R” Us developing franchise markets in Asia and the Middle East. Bloomfield has a Bachelor of Science in finance and accounting. She is married with two children.
Buelow, Darin M.
For more 20 years, Darin Buelow has served corporate clients with their most challenging footprint and asset deployment issues. As a leader in Deloitte Consulting’s Real Estate & Location Strategy practice, he is known for generating strategies that transform structural costs, improve access to talent, and penetrate new global markets by optimizing location and footprint decisions. His global experience extends throughout the Americas, Asia Pacific, and Europe. Buelow serves as the global location strategy leader for Deloitte, helping connect the location advisory community in Deloitte’s member firms around the world. He is actively engaged as the lead engagement partner on a number of our most strategic clients’ footprint optimization, site selection, and incentives negotiation initiatives. Buelow has consulting experience in a variety of industries including manufacturing, consumer products, retail, financial services, life sciences, technology and real estate. A particular focus of Buelow’s career has been heavy manufacturing site selection projects, including those in the plastics, automotive, steel, tire, chemicals, paper, and other utility and infrastructure intensive sectors. He is a frequent speaker, author, and contributor on the topics of global location strategy, footprint analytics, social impact modeling and economic development issues. Buelow graduated from the University of Wisconsin with a Bachelor of Science in Mechanical Engineering. He was also a founding member of the Site Selector’s Guild — the world’s only association of peer-nominated location advisers. He also served on the Industrial Asset Management Council and Chicago Council on Global Affairs.
Pedro Cherry serves as executive vice president of Customer Service and Operations (CSO) for Georgia Power. He leads 5,000-plus employees in the CSO organization with responsibility for the company’s customer service efforts, power delivery, sales, pricing and planning, regional external affairs renewable development and corporate services. Cherry is responsible for operating and maintaining an electric system that serves 2.6 million customers in all but four of Georgia’s 159 counties. Cherry earned a bachelor’s degree in industrial engineering and an MBA in operations management and finance from Auburn University. He serves on the boards of the Georgia Department of Economic Development, Zoo Atlanta and the Georgia Tourism Foundation. In addition, he serves on the Clark Atlanta University Board of Trustees, Leadership Atlanta Board of Trustees, the advisory board of the North Georgia Division of Synovus and the Georgia Chamber board of governors. Cherry is a member of the CFA Institute, 100 Black Men of Atlanta and Auburn’s Alumni Engineering Advisory Council. He is a graduate of Leadership Atlanta, Leadership Georgia and the Atlanta Regional Commission’s Regional Leadership Institute.
Scott Cornell is the chief operating officer (COO) of Glovis America Inc., responsible for all aspects of Glovis America Operations including finished vehicle logistics, non-core business units, strategy and business development.
Cornell has more than 30 years of logistics experience which includes responsibility for global divisions while domiciled in both Europe and the U.S.
Cornell started his career as a Merchant Marine officer after receiving his degree in transportation from SUNY Maritime College.
He rose to the rank of Master for Unlimited tonnage vessels. During that time, he also served in the U.S. Naval Reserve. His first shoreside employment was with Hoegh Autoliners.
Cornell then led the commercial activities of Liberty Maritime Corporation and later at Hyundai Glovis. He was named COO of Glovis America Inc. in June 2019.
Stuart Countess is the chief operating officer (COO) for Kia Motors Manufacturing Georgia, Inc. (KMMG). In this position, Countess is responsible for leading the plant’s production division, overseeing the operations of the four manufacturing shops, as well as the production control and maintenance departments. Countess previously served as KMMG’s chief administrative officer where he was responsible for leading the human resources/administration division. After joining KMMG in 2008, he has also served as vice president, overseeing KMMG’s quality division and as the senior manager for general assembly. Prior to KMMG, Countess spent 13 years serving in numerous leadership roles at Mercedes Benz U.S. International in Vance, Ala. Prior to Mercedes, Countess was the senior supplier quality engineer for AUTECS, a tier 1 supplier for Nissan and Subaru. He also previously served as quality engineering administrator for Hughes Georgia in LaGrange, a division of Hughes Aircraft. Countess graduated from the University of Alabama with a Bachelor of Science in Electrical Engineering and received his Master of Business Administration from LaGrange College. He is proud to have raised 4 beautiful children, now all grown. He and his wife, Dana, reside in LaGrange, Ga.
With 28 years of experience in the transportation industry, Tim Haas is currently the senior vice president and chief operations officer of CMA CGM America and has overall responsibility for Marine, Equipment and Intermodal Operations in the United States. Prior to joining CMA CGM, Haas worked with Instar AGF, Canadian Infrastructure Fund, specializing in the purchase of transportation assets. He also served as senior vice president of Watco Terminal and Port Services where he ran a network of 22 rail terminals across the U.S. and Canada and a 655-acre industrial port in Houston. Before that, Haas worked with Maersk/APM Terminals in various locations around the globe. In the U.S., Haas managed container terminal operations in New Orleans, Tacoma and Houston. In addition to U.S. terminal operations, Haas has also managed the Port of Salalah, Oman and worked in business development in Africa and the Middle East from the APM Terminals corporate office in The Hague. While there, Haas was involved in the port privatization of Luanda, Angola, Aqaba, Jordan, Az Zubayr, Iraq and Bahrain. He also held the regional position of COO for the Greater China Area where he sat on the board of 10 joint venture organizations.
Jeff Heller serves as the vice president of intermodal and automotive for Norfolk Southern. In this role, he has responsibility for NS’s intermodal and automotive marketing, sales and intermodal customer service. NS’s intermodal and automotive department includes five business divisions and subsidiary companies: domestic intermodal, international intermodal, automotive, thoroughbred direct and triple crown services and intermodal customer service. Heller joined NS’s international intermodal group in 1994 at the corporate headquarters in Norfolk, Va., and was appointed group vice president international intermodal in April 2004. Prior to joining NS, Heller held various sales and marketing management positions in the container shipping business, both in the U.S. and abroad.
Brandan Huff currently serves as Westlake Chemicals director of transportation and logistics. In this position, he is responsible for commercial and operational logistics for Westlake companies. These responsibilities include all modes of transportation with an annual budget exceeding $920M and $1.4B in rail and marine assets under management. Huff joined Westlake Chemical in February of 2014. Huff’s recent accomplishments include leading the Logistics integration efforts on three acquisitions ensuring business continuity, synergies, and developing the Logistics organization to support the business. Prior to joining Westlake, Huff worked at OCI Chemical for eight years heading up Logistics and Customer Service. In this role, his responsibilities included global supply chain management for OCI Chemical’s sodium products business in addition to domestic commercial and operational logistics activities. In his career, Huff has 27 years of experience in the chemical industry. He has served in leadership roles and as a board member of several organizations. These roles and organizations include President of the Glass Producers Transportation Council, Chairman of the American and European Soda Ash Shipping Association, Board member National Freight and Transportation Association, and Board member Southwest Association of Rail Shippers. Huff graduated with a bachelor’s degree in biochemistry from the University of Utah, undergraduate coursework in business management, and holds a certificate in executive leadership from Emory University.
Dr. Walter Kemmsies leads JLL’s Transportation and Infrastructure Advisory Group. In this role, he executes initiatives for public and private sector clients who have interests in or properties proximate to seaports and other freight hubs throughout the Americas. This includes assisting both public agencies and investors in underwriting, financing and evaluating new investment vehicles and opportunities. Walter is widely viewed as one of the foremost experts on ports, rail and infrastructure in the U.S. His areas of expertise include, but are not limited to, market assessment and forecasting, maritime and overall global trade regulatory issues, public/private port and infrastructure financing as well as long term strategic planning and capital investment. Walter’s professional experience working in Europe, Latin America and Asia uniquely qualifies him as a global trade economist. Experience He currently advises several major U.S. Port Authorities and is routinely asked to work on complex issues with various investment banks, private equity firms and public regulatory agencies. Walter has helped major multinational corporations restructure their global supply chains. He provides substantial support to the freight movement industry via columns in industry publications, presentations at major international industry conferences, and advising federal and state agencies. Walter has testified to the US Senate Transportation and Commerce Subcommittee on issues affecting the freight industry. He has also published research in scholarly journals. Prior to joining JLL, Walter was the Chief Economist for Moffatt & Nichol, a leading global infrastructure advisement firm. Preceding his experience working with Moffatt & Nichol, Walter was the Head of European Strategy at JP Morgan in London and, earlier, Head of Global Industry Strategy at UBS in Zurich and London. Education and Affiliations Walter is an advisor to the U.S. Department of Commerce Advisory Committee on Supply Chain Competitiveness and the Department of Transportation’s National Task Force on Transportation Infrastructure Valuation for several years. He is a member of the Georgia Governor’s Council of Economic Advisors. He is a member of the Council of Supply Chain Management Professionals and the National Association of Business Economists. He holds a Doctorate degree in Economics from Texas A&M University, a Master of Arts in Economics from Florida Atlantic University, and a Bachelor of Arts in Economics from Florida Atlantic University.
Brian Kemp is a husband, father, businessman and public servant. On Nov. 6, 2018, he was elected as Georgia's 83rd governor, earning more votes than any gubernatorial candidate in state history. Gov. Kemp built his first business – Kemp Development and Construction Company – with a pick-up truck and a shovel. Over 30 years later, he is a successful entrepreneur with businesses and investments in banking, farming, timber, manufacturing and real estate. Kemp served on the board of Suncrest Stone in Tifton, as a founding director of First Madison Bank, and St. Mary’s Hospital Board in Athens. From the backhoe to the board room, Gov. Kemp understands how to create jobs for Georgians, grow companies, recruit start-ups, and make deals on the international stage. Out of frustration with government, Kemp ran for public office in the early 2000s. In the state Senate, Kemp was instrumental in fighting to cut fees, taxes, and mandates on job creators and Georgia families. As Secretary of State, Kemp used technology and innovation to cut bureaucratic red tape, slash spending and streamline government. As governor, Kemp is fighting to make Georgia No. 1 for small business through regulatory reform. He will ensure that all parts of our state—including rural Georgia—have opportunities to grow and thrive. Kemp is fundamentally reforming state government, keeping families safe, and always putting hardworking Georgians first. Kemp and his wife, the former Marty Argo of Athens, are the proud parents of three daughters—Jarrett, Lucy, and Amy Porter—and active members of Emmanuel Episcopal Church.
Ritesh Kothari is the director of global operations at Tricon Energy, a global petrochemical trading company. He is responsible for managing the logistics for the Plastics business and the back-office operations in India Office. Kothari has more than 13 years of experience in Logistics, Supply-Chain Management, Consulting, and Accounting. Prior to joining Tricon, Kothari worked at Deloitte. He earned his bachelor’s degree in accounting and M.S. in finance from Texas A&M University.
Griff Lynch is the Executive Director of the Georgia Ports Authority, a 1,200-person strong state port authority that owns and operates strategic gateways serving the U.S. Southeast. As Executive Director, Lynch oversees all port activity involving the deepwater ports of Savannah and Brunswick, as well as inland terminal operations in Bainbridge and Columbus. Directing one of Georgia’s largest economic engines, he administers a $455 million annual budget. Before becoming executive director, Lynch served as GPA chief operating officer for five years. As COO of the single largest container terminal in North America and second busiest U.S. auto port, he was responsible for sustaining the profitable growth and development of all operations, and maintaining world-class operating standards. His duties included overseeing ambitious capital improvement and development programs for five deep water ports and two inland terminals while maintaining strong relationships with numerous customers, labor officials and supply chain partners. A proven leader in the maritime industry, Lynch brings more than 30 years of experience in the design and implementation of major port expansions, the effective execution of sustainable profit and productivity models and identifying winning sales and marketing strategies. Lynch graduated from the State University of New York at Maritime College in 1988 and immediately began his training as a vessel planner. Over the course of his career, Lynch held executive positions in both sales and operations at terminals in New York and Virginia before joining the GPA in 2011.
Dennis Manns is the senior automotive adviser to InStarAGF: Toronto, CN. InStarAGF is a leading private equity group that is very active in the acquisition of a variety of segment leading corporations. Manns provides automotive insight and direction on the acquisition of automotive related businesses. Manns is the executive vice president for North Motors Group, a leading OEM and automotive services executive advisory group. Manns is also a board member for AMPORTS: Jacksonville, Fla. AMPORTS is a leading automotive port services provider that was recently acquired by InStarAGF. Prior to this position, Manns served as the chief commercial officer (CCO) for Road & Rail Services, a Louisville, Ky. based logistic services provider. Manns has an extensive background in the automotive and logistics industries. His background includes 31 years at American Honda in Torrance, Calif. in both sales and operations. He earned a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration from the University of Dayton in Dayton, Ohio. Manns previously served on the boards of the California Council for Economic Education (CCEE), American Youth Soccer Organization (AYSO) and Burlington Northern Santa Fe (BNSF) Customer Advisory Board.
Will McKnight was born and raised in Augusta, Georgia. He graduated from The Academy of Richmond County in 1974 and from The Georgia Institute of Technology in 1979. Following his graduation from Tech, he continued to work for his family-owned construction company in Augusta and has been the President since 1996. Mr. McKnight has overseen the completion of over $1 billion in construction projects.
In addition to Mr. McKnight’s extensive career in the construction industry, he has remained active in his community by serving and chairing many boards and committees. He was named Chairman of the Board of Directors of the First Bank of Georgia in May 2010 and then served on the board of State Bank which sold to Cadence Bank in 2018. He is the past President and continued member of both the Augusta Country Club and Augusta Golf Association, and he has served on the boards of Associated General Contractors of America, Augusta Ballet, Richmond Academy Booster Club, Tuttle-Newton Home, Episcopal Day School and First Tee. Mr. McKnight is a member of the Exchange Club of Augusta and Trinity on the Hill United Methodist Church. He has served on the Georgia Ports Authority since 2014 where he has chaired the Development Committee and Finance Committee and served as the Secretary Treasurer and currently Vice Chairman. He is a member of Ocean Forest Golf Club, Sea Island Golf Club, and the Augusta National Golf Club where he has served on the Gallery Committee of the Masters since 2000 and is presently Chairman of the Grounds Committee for the Masters. He has also been a member of the Planning and Development Committee for AU Foundation as well as the Consolidation Committee for MCG and Augusta State University.
Morales, Vásquez Ricaurte
Ricaurte Vásquez Morales is the administrator of the Panama Canal, the autonomous agency in charge of the management of the Panama Canal, the all-water route to the service of world maritime trade. On Feb. 15, 2019, the Panama Canal Board of Directors appointed Vásquez as the new administrator for a seven-year term as of Sept. 5, 2019, replacing current Administrator Jorge L. Quijano, who ended his term at the helm of the waterway as established by law. Vásquez has a broad and successful career of more than 30 years in financial management, international capital markets, financial consulting and extensive experience in the public sector. His experience in public administration included several highly relevant positions as minister of planning and economic policy, chief debt negotiator for the refinancing program of the Republic of Panama, and minister of economy and finance. Within the Panama Canal, Vásquez was the first Panamanian finance director at the waterway from 1996 to 2000. He also served as deputy administrator from 2000 to 2004 and minister for canal affairs and chairman of the board of directors from 2004 to 2006. He was responsible for the financial transition of the Canal to Panamanian administration, in full compliance with the 1977 Torrijos-Carter Treaties, including the closing of operations of the Panama Canal Commission, the United States agency in charge of the administration and operation of the Canal until noon on December 31, 1999. In the private sector, he occupied senior positions in General Electric from 2008 to 2015 as CEO for Central America and the Caribbean, vice president and executive director. Vásquez has a Bachelor of Science in Mathematics from Villanova University, in Villanova, Penn., a Master of Science in Operations Research and Statistics and a Ph.D. in Managerial Economics, from the Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, and a Master's in Economics from North Carolina State University. His extensive experience as university professor complements his extensive preparation and professional experience. He was an associate professor of economics at Florida State University — Panama Campus.
Uffe Ostergaard has worked in the container shipping industry for the past 27 years. He spent the first 20 years with Maersk, predominantly in the Copenhagen head office but also in various management positions in Europe, Africa and Asia. During this period, Ostergaard worked in trade management, served as managing director in various countries and held positions as senior director for strategy and head of global marketing. In 2013, Ostergaard joined UASC as chief commercial officer and a member of executive management in Dubai, with responsibility for all global commercial activities. As part of that role, he also held board positions and was chairman of organizations in China, India and the U.S. As part of the merger with Hapag Lloyd in 2017, Ostergaard became member of the executive committee. On April 1, 2018, he took over the position of president of Hapag-Lloyd (America) LLC and is responsible for all activities in the U.S. and Canada. Ostergaard is married with two children.
Peter M. Tirschwell
Peter Tirschwell is Vice President in the Maritime & Trade business of IHS Markit, a leading data, analytics and business intelligence organization serving the maritime industry globally through products and services including JOC, PIERS, AIS Live, Maritime Insurance Risk Suite, and the Sea-web (formerly Lloyd’s Register) vessel characteristics database. In his role Peter leads the editorial teams of JOC, Safety at Sea and Dredging & Port Construction. IHS Markit has a leading presence in sectors including automotive, energy, petrochemical, defense, and technology. A career transportation journalist, Mr. Tirschwell was a reporter, West Coast Bureau Chief, Editor in Chief and Publisher of The Journal of Commerce daily newspaper in his 25+ year career with the company beginning in 1992. He is the founder and chairman of the annual TPM conference in Long Beach, Calif., one of the world’s largest shipping events, (March 3-6, 2019), and oversees other leading JOC events such as TPM Asia, Inland Distribution and the JOC Europe conference in Hamburg. He led the development of the JOC Port Productivity data, the first global database of port performance able to compare ports and terminals on an apples-to-apples basis, on the basis of berth productivity. He writes a regular column in The Journal of Commerce, covering a range of international logistics topics, speaks regularly at industry events and has been quoted in mainstream business media including the BBC, CNBC, The Wall Street Journal, Financial Times and The New York Times. Mr. Tirschwell lives in Brooklyn with his family.
Cliff Pyron is responsible for providing strategic leadership of the Georgia Ports Authority's business development and trade development activities. His principal accountability is to develop all commercial activities in order to sustain long-term growth and market share leadership. This includes all sales, marketing, economic development, promotional, trade show, and agency relations activities. Additionally, he collaborates with the executive management team to develop and execute the Authority's strategic plan, providing direction and oversight for success in the marketplace. With a BS degree in Business Administration from East Carolina University, Pyron has more than 30 years of experience in the liner and logistics sector of the maritime industry. Prior to his appointment to the GPA in 2008, he served as Vice President - Sales, for NYK Line - North America in Secaucus, New Jersey. Pyron had previously worked at Maersk-Sealand as Vice President - Sales, Southeast Region and was with the organization for a combined total of 19 years, more than five years in Hong Kong with Sea-Land Service, Inc. as General Manager, Hong Kong & So. China. He has had various liner, logistics, operational, marketing and back office support management capacities.
Rhoades, Robert “Bob”
Bob Rhoades is the General Manager of Chevron Phillips Chemical Company’s Global Supply Chain Organization. He is responsible for logistics, customer service, budgeting and global trade compliance for all CPChem products by all transportation modes. Rhoades began his career with Phillips Petroleum Company in 1981 as a chemical engineer and later held various positions in sales, marketing and product management. In 2010, he served as the General Manager of Phillips Sumika Polypropylene Company, a joint venture between Chevron Phillips Chemical Company (CPChem) and Sumitomo Chemical. In 2012, he became the Polyethylene Global Business Manager and then in 2014 relocated to Singapore as the Asia Region General Manager. From Singapore, Bob managed three CPChem joint venture manufacturing operations and seven business offices across Asia. In late 2016, Rhoades repatriated to the United States to start the transition to the position of General Manager – Global Supply Chain in early 2017. Rhoades received a Bachelor of Science Degree in Chemical Engineering from Oklahoma State University in 1982 and a Master of Business Administration degree from West Texas State University in 1986. As an Eagle Scout, Rhoades has been involved as an adult leader in both Cub Scouts and Boy Scouts. Bob also served on the Board of Directors of Metro Mobility, a non-profit organization providing transportation for the elderly and handicapped throughout the Denver, Colorado metropolitan area.
Anthony (Tony) Scioscia is principal of Anthony A. Scioscia, Management, LLC, working as advisor and consultant to the maritime industry. Mr. Scioscia also serves on several boards and is a speaker at an industry event. As senior vice president of labor relations for Maersk Agency, U.S.A. (2007-2013), Scioscia played an integral role in both the ILA and IL\VU contract negotiations. In 1999, A.P. Moller Group acquired Sea-Land's International business, appointing Scioscia president of APM Terminals North America. He was responsible for the planning, design and construction of Pier 400 in Los Angeles, California and the Virginia Terminal in Portsmouth, Virginia, the first semi-automated facility in the United States. Scioscia's last position at SeaLand was as senior vice-president and general manager of North America Operating Group (NAOG), directing all operational activities in the U.S. Scioscia also served in senior executive positions at Puerto Rico Marine Management Inc. (PRlMMI), and United States Lines. With more than 40 years of maritime experience overseeing global and domestic operations, Scioscia has received the Connie, the Admiral of the Ocean Sea (AOTOS), the Transportation Man of the Year, the International Maritime Hall of Fame, the Good Scout and the James E. West awards. Scioscia earned his B.S. in Business Management from Seton Hall University and graduated from Columbia University's Executive Management program.
Mark Szakonyi leads JOC.com and The Journal of Commerce. The JOC editorial team of 20 editors and correspondents provides business-critical and data-heavy business intelligence and analysis. Szakonyi oversees the magazine's 100-plus special reports a year, including the Annual Review and Outlook and Top 100 Importers and Exporters issues. In addition to supporting all JOC events, including TPM, TPM Asia, and the Inland Distribution Conference, he is chairman of the annual Canada Trade Conference. His analysis and work have been quoted in mainstream news media including the BBC, The Economist, NPR, and USA Today. He has been reporting on, researching and analyzing the container shipping industry for a decade and has worked as a journalist for 17 years. He is fascinated by how the logistics industry serves as a lens to better understand politics, economics and culture on a global scale. Szakonyi, a Chicago native now calling Washington D.C. home, is an avid reader, traveler and vinyl record collector.
Tan Hua Joo
Tan Hua Joo serves as an executive consultant with Alphaliner. Tan is also the founder and editor of the Alphaliner Weekly and Monthly reports. Tan has been involved in the container shipping industry for more than 20 years and has held senior positions in leading container shipping, container leasing and shipowning companies. Tan graduated in 1995 with a bachelor’s degree in politics, philosophy and economics from Oxford University. He also received an MBA from Stanford University in 2004.
Chris Tomasulo is a managing director within the Industrial Services Group in Atlanta, and a part of their Global Supply Chain and Logistics Solutions Group. Tomasulo represents his clients nationally by providing tenant Representation, Site Selection and Acquisition services. Tomasulo has more than 25 years of experience in the real estate industry representing both tenant and agency clients throughout Metro Atlanta and around the globe. He works strategically to understand their needs and properly aligns them with the best business, real estate and logistics solutions. Tomasulo graduated from Iona College in New Rochelle, N.Y. His success in representing corporations throughout Atlanta is recognized by his repeated membership in the Atlanta Board of Realtors Million Dollar Club. Tomasulo is a member of JLL’s Supply Chain and Logistics Solutions Group, CSCMP and ICSC. Tomasulo and his wife, Becca, has two children — Sam and Amelia. He enjoys golf, cooking, fly fishing and is a spectator of all sports. He enjoys giving back and helped establish the Dana G. Smith Cancer Assistance Fund and the Heavenly Hounds charities.
Pat Wilson was appointed commissioner of the Georgia Department of Economic Development (GDEcD) in November 2016. As commissioner, he leads the state agency responsible for creating jobs and investment opportunities in Georgia through business recruitment and expansion, small business growth, international trade and tourism, as well as the arts, film and music industries. Wilson is responsible for leading the GDEcD team in planning and mobilizing state resources for economic development. Under Gov. Brian P. Kemp and Commissioner Wilson’s leadership, Georgia was named the No. 1 state in the nation in which to do business for the seventh consecutive year in a row by Site Selection and sixth year in a row by Area Development. GDEcD was also rated as the nation’s best state-level economic development organization by the International Economic Development Council (IEDC) in 2017. Wilson previously served as chief operating officer of GDEcD from January 2011 until his appointment as Commissioner by former Governor Nathan Deal. As COO, Wilson managed the daily operations of the agency, directed long-term strategy, managed the agency’s legislative priorities and served as the department’s liaison with the Georgia Congressional delegation and federal government partners. In addition, he served as executive director of the Georgia Allies. Wilson joined GDEcD as Deputy Commissioner for Global Commerce in 2010. Prior to that, he served on the staff of Gov. Sonny Perdue as the director of government affairs. In that position, he led efforts to promote Governor Perdue’s legislative agenda at the State Capitol and managed federal affairs for the state of Georgia. He previously served as director of federal affairs for the state, opening the Washington, D.C., office in 2005. There he worked to promote the state’s agenda with the U.S. Congress and federal agencies as the Governor’s representative to the Georgia congressional delegation. Prior to his work in state government, Wilson was director of governmental affairs for Greenberg Traurig, LLP, in Washington. He served under the late Sen. Paul Coverdell and under then-Rep. Nathan Deal. Wilson is a Franklin Springs, Ga. native, and holds an undergraduate degree in political science with a focus on international relations from the University of Georgia. He and his wife, Melissa, and their two children, Padgett and Carter, reside in Sandy Springs.