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Movers & Shapers, August 2016

People making a difference in Bibb, Chilton and Dallas counties

Carl Bowline

Carl Bowline

Carl Bowline 

Bowline is co-owner and principal of Madden & Associates, founded in 2000 and the first dedicated marketing company in Dallas County. Bowline has worked with politicians, hospitals, municipalities, financial institutions, community and economic developers, artists, non-profits, industry and retail businesses. In addition, he is co-owner in a new printing company, Blackbelt Paper & Ink. He also serves on the boards of SABRA Sanctuary, a domestic violence shelter serving a five county area; Old Depot Museum; Main Street Selma, and Blackbelt Benefit Group. He is a candidate for the Selma City Council. 

Suzannah Campbell 

Campbell is the administrator of the new St. Vincent’s Chilton hospital. Campbell has been with St. Vincent’s Health System for 10 years, serving as director of business development, administrative director of operations, and as vice president of operations for St. Vincent’s Birmingham. Campbell holds a Master of Public Health from the University of Alabama at Birmingham, a master’s from Auburn University at Montgomery and an undergraduate degree from Auburn University. She serves on the board for the Alabama chapter of the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society and its Light the Night Walk. Campbell also serves on the Samford University Healthcare Advisory Committee.

Aubrey Carter 

Carter is a manager with Alabama Power Co. in the office for Selma and Marion. He earned a bachelor’s degree in management from Alabama A&M University and a master’s from Troy University. He has been with Alabama Power for 17 years, working in Birmingham and Montgomery before transferring to the Selma area. Carter is board chairman of the Selma and Dallas County Chamber of Commerce and a board member of the Selma and Dallas County Economic Development Authority.

Clay Carmichael 

Carmichael works with his family’s 100-year-old sand, gravel and concrete business, Cosby-Carmichael Inc. in Selma. He and a group of friends started a non-profit called Blackbelt Benefit Group to put on fundraising events for local charities. He is a member of the Selma and Dallas County Economic Development Authority and is president of Main Street Selma. 

Stephen Dawkins


Stephen Dawkins

A native of Alabaster, Dawkins has worked at Clanton Newspapers Inc. since graduating from the University of Alabama. Dawkins has helped produce community-focused newspapers, magazines and websites as sports editor, assistant managing editor and, since 2012, managing editor. CNI publishes The Clanton Advertiser, North Chilton Advertiser, Peach Living magazine and various web sites and special publications. Dawkins and his newspapers have won numerous awards. Dawkins has served as president of the Chilton County Chamber of Commerce’s board, president of the Rotary Club of Chilton County and member of the Jefferson State Community College Clanton Campus Advisory Board.

Van Forrester

Forrester is the business office manager of Alabama Power’s Clanton Operating Center, responsible for customer service in parts of Autauga, Chilton and Coosa counties. He serves on the Clanton and Chilton County Industrial Development Board, the Education Workforce Development Council, Chilton County Industrial Development Board, Clanton Industrial Development Board and Jefferson State Community College’s Community and Corporate Advisory Board. He is also chairman of the board of the Chilton County Chamber of Commerce. 

Mandy Henry 

Henry is part owner and associate broker of The Real Estate Gallery LLC in Selma. She also is part owner of Queen City Market, a retail and design store, and contractor with RDC Construction, where she holds a homebuilders license. She and business partner AC Reeves have redeveloped several historic downtown buildings in Selma. A University of Alabama graduate, she has also worked in real estate and advertising. She is a board member of Main Street Selma and has served with the Selma Rotary Club, Habitat for Humanity Selma, Selma Charity League and the Selma Board of Realtors. 

Elizabeth “Liz” Huntley

Huntley is an attorney at Lightfoot, Franklin & White LLC in Birmingham. She serves on the boards of Leadership Alabama, Alabama School Readiness Advisory, Children’s First Foundation, Children’s Village, Cornerstone Schools of Alabama, St. Vincent’s Health System and Chilton County Industrial Development Board. She is also active with the Chilton County Children’s Policy Council, and is president and co-founder of Project Gear. She also is active in the Alabama State and Birmingham Bar Associations. She serves as a motivational speaker and published an autobiography, More Than A Bird. She earned her law degree from the University of Alabama, where she now serves as chair of the Farrah Law Society board of trustees. She received her undergraduate degree from Auburn University, where she is now a member of the board of trustees. 

Stephanie Kemmer 

Kemmer is the probate judge of Bibb County. Prior to her appointment in 2015, she practiced law for 15 years and served as an attorney and mediator for the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission for four years. She holds a B.A. from the University of the South in Sewanee, Tennessee, and a J.D. from the Cumberland School of Law in Birmingham. She is a Leadership Bibb graduate and the 2005 Business and Professional Women’s Young Careerist. She is active in the Bibb County Chamber of Commerce and is a board member of Bibb Medical Center, the Central Alabama Child Advocacy Center and the local advisory board for Trustmark.

Vanessa McKinney


Vanessa McKinney

McKinney, a certified activity director with 20 years of experience, is director of Senior Connection of Chilton County. When budget cuts forced Senior Connection to relocate, McKinney, with help from the city of Clanton, spearheaded the fundraising and renovation of a 10,000-square-foot building. Under her direction, the organization has increased its membership by 150 percent. McKinney is a graduate of Chilton Leadership, recipient of the Lions Club Pillar of the Community Award and the Chilton County Chamber of Commerce Community Spirit Award.

James M. Mitchell

Mitchell is president of Wallace Community College Selma. He is a graduate of Shaw University, with advanced degrees from Fayetteville State University. He serves on the board of the American Association of Community Colleges, is chairman of the board for The Innovation Center, and is a member of the Selma and Dallas County Economic Development Authority Board, the Craig Airport Authority Board and the Black Belt Community Foundation. He is president of the West Alabama-East Mississippi Alliance and active with the Black Belt Action Commission.

Jean Nelson 

Nelson, a lifelong resident of Chilton County, is mayor of Thorsby. Before being appointed mayor in 2012, Nelson served on the town council for 12 years. She was president of the planning commission and is now a certified municipal official. Nelson worked as a realtor throughout Chilton County from 1985-2011 and earned her certification as a real estate broker in 2007.

AC Reeves

Reeves is co-owner and qualifying broker of The Real Estate Gallery LLC in Selma. Working with business partner Mandy Henry, she has helped win federal historic tax credits to renovate several historic downtown buildings into loft apartments over retail. She is a graduate of the University of the South in Sewanee, Tennessee. She organized a city swap with Chattanooga, allowing Selma community leaders to tour Chattanooga and learn about its downtown redevelopment. Reeves is co-founder of ArtsRevive Board and has been active with the Selma and Dallas County Chamber of Commerce, Selma Board of Realtors, Selma Area Food Bank, International Paper Advisory Board and more.

Grayson Russell 

Russell began doing commercials for a local automobile dealership at the age of six. Soon thereafter, he was featured in commercials for McDonald’s and Blue Cross Blue Shield. At age seven, he landed his first feature film from an open call, playing Will Ferrell’s feisty red-haired son, Texas Ranger, in “Talladega Nights-The Ballad of Ricky Bobby.” Russell’s credits now include 10 films, including his role as Fregley, the awkward kid with the secret freckle in “The Diary of a Wimpy Kid” trilogy and various television episodes. He sings and plays guitar and recorded an independent music project at age 15. In 2016, Russell played Tommy in Garry Marshall’s film “Mother’s Day,” and graduated from his local high school with a GPA exceeding 4.0. He is starting college at Jefferson State Community College and plans to study film. He is active in his church music program.

Sheryl Smedley


Sheryl Smedley

Smedley is executive director of the Selma-Dallas County Chamber of Commerce. She joined the Chamber staff after 20 years in banking. Smedley attended Daytona Beach Community College, Wallace Community College Selma, the Alabama Banking School at the University of South Alabama and the University of Alabama. She is a 2004 graduate of Leadership Selma-Dallas County. She is currently attending the U. S. Chamber of Commerce Institute of Management Southeast at the University of Georgia. She has held leadership roles with Habitat for Humanity, Selma–Dallas County Historical Preservation Society, Selmont Community Development Corp., Dallas County Department of Human Resources Task Force, Black Belt Community Foundation and the International Paper Riverdale Mill Advisory board, Selma Children’s Choir and Orchestra and Leadership Selma and Dallas County. 

Andy Stewart 

Stewart is market president for Selma-Dallas County and Centreville-Bibb County for Trustmark National Bank. He is a graduate of Auburn University, where he was a member of the Auburn Men’s Golf Team. He is chairman of the Selma and Dallas County Economic Development Authority. He is a board member of the Cahaba Mental Health Foundation, past president of the Selma Country Club, past board member of the Selma and Dallas County Chamber of Commerce, and works with the Shareholders Club to raise funds for Auburn’s Harbert College of Business. 

Robert Threlkeld 

Threlkeld is plant manager of two Tenaska generating plants in Billingsley. Threlkeld started working for Tenaska in 2001 as plant manager and guided both plants through startup and commissioning. Prior to Tenaska, he was an officer in the U.S. Navy, retiring as a commander after 20 years. He is a board member on the Chilton County Hospital Authority, where he worked with the architect on energy efficiency initiatives. He is also the chair of the Chilton County Industrial Development Board and serves on various other boards in the area. Threlkeld is a graduate of Auburn University with a master’s from Troy University in Montgomery.

Mark Tyner 

Tyner is county administrator and economic development director for Bibb County and has been employed with the county since 2003. He holds bachelor’s and master’s degrees from the University of Alabama. 

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