Governor Nathan Deal - Georgia’s 82nd Governor (2011-2019)

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Deal suspends six DeKalb school board members

February 25, 2013

Acting on the recommendation of the State Board of Education, Gov. Nathan Deal today suspended six members of the DeKalb school board. Deal announced that he has appointed a panel to nominate replacements and has tapped Brad Bryant, a former DeKalb school board member, to act as his liaison to the DeKalb board and Superintendent Michael Thurmond.

“The stakes in this case are high; the future of almost 100,000 students hangs in the balance,” Deal said. “Therefore, I have accepted the unanimous recommendation of the State Board of Education to suspend six members of the DeKalb school board. I have met with Superintendent Michael Thurmond, and I believe he can play a vital role in getting the system back on track. I look forward to a positive working relationship with Superintendent Thurmond on behalf of the children of DeKalb County.”

Brad Bryant, liaison to Gov. Deal

Bryant currently serves as the executive director of the Georgia Foundation for Education for the Georgia Department of Education. He previously served as the department’s general counsel. In 2010 he was appointed by then-Gov. Sonny Perdue as state superintendent of schools to fill the unexpired term of the outgoing superintendent. For 10 years, he served on the State Board of Education and also served on the DeKalb County Board of Education from 1991-2003. Bryant is a member and past president of the National Association of State Boards of Education and also served as president of the Georgia School Boards Association in 2002. He is a member of the State Bar of Georgia and earned his law degree from Mercer University, his master’s in Business Administration from the University of Georgia and his bachelor’s degree in Business Administration from Presbyterian College. Bryant resides in DeKalb County. 

Nominating panel

Kenneth Mason, Chairman 

Mason was appointed to the State Board of Education in 2011 as the member for the 5th Congressional District, which includes a portion of DeKalb. He is the director of Urban Initiatives for the Southern Regional Education Board where he promotes college and career readiness for all students. Mason earned a bachelor’s degree in Physics from Hendrix College in Arkansas and a master’s in Teaching/Education from the University of San Francisco. He resides in Atlanta.

Garry W. McGiboney

McGiboney serves as the Associate Superintendent of Policy and Charter Schools at the Georgia Department of Education. He has more than 30 years of experience in public education, having served in several school level and district level positions. McGiboney has a Ph.D. in both school psychology and educational administration from Georgia State University and is a state certified psychologist and a state certified mediator. He resides in Stone Mountain.

James E. Bostic, Jr. 

Bostic is managing director at HEP & Associates, an educational consulting company and a partner at Coleman Lew & Associates, Inc., an executive search firm In Charlotte. He has more than 25 years experience in the paper and forest products industry with Georgia-Pacific Corp. He served as a member of the South Carolina Commission on Higher Education and chaired it for five years, served on the Georgia State Board of Education for nine years and has served on the Board of Trustees for both Tuskegee University and Clemson University. He is currently a member of the Board of Trustees at Wofford College and serves on  the Board of Directors of ACT, Inc. Bostic earned his bachelor’s degree and his doctorate degree in Chemistry from Clemson University. He resides in Atlanta.

Alicia Phillip

Phillip is president of the Community Foundation for Greater Atlanta. Named as one of Georgia Trend’s “100 Most Influential Georgians” and one of the “100 Most Influential Atlantans” by the Atlanta Business Chronicle, Phillip has led the foundation’s grant-making, fundraising and collaboration with donors, nonprofits and community leaders for 37 years. Philipp received a bachelor’s degree from Emory University and a master’s in Business Administration from Georgia State University. She resides in Decatur.

Sadie Dennard

Dennard works as a region external affairs manager for Georgia Power's Metro East Region in south DeKalb. She served three terms as a member of the Atlanta Board of Education and is a former president of the Georgia School Boards Association. She received her bachelor’s degree from American University, and she’s a deacon at Atlanta’s Friendship Baptist Church.