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Movers & Shapers, September 2013

People making a difference in Tuscaloosa County

Dan Blakley

Dan Blakley

Dan Blakley
Blakley oversees the operation of Regions Bank Tuscaloosa’s market, which includes the consumer, commercial, community banking, mortgage and wealth management lines of business. After serving in the U.S. Army, Blakley joined the bank in 2000 through the management associate program and has served in management positions in Tennessee and Alabama.

Judy Bonner
Bonner was named the 28th president of The University of Alabama in late 2012. During the decade she served as provost, the University underwent transformational change growing from 19,000 students in 2003 to more than 33,600 in 2012. She joined the UA faculty in 1981 as associate professor and head of the department of human nutrition and hospitality, after teaching at UAB and The Ohio State University. Her accolades include the Distinguished Alumni Award from The Ohio State University, the AHEA Leader Award and the award for Outstanding Dietitian for the state of Alabama.

Steve Fair
Fair is the dean of technical services at Shelton State Community College. Fair joined the college in 1988 after 10 years in the manufacturing industry. During his career at Shelton State, he has served as an instructor of machine tool technology and computerized numerical control, as director of business and industry training, and in administrative posts. An advocate for technical education, he is actively involved in many workforce and economic development activities in West Alabama.   

Ashley Gill

Ashley Gill
Gill, an Alabama native, moved to Northport four years ago to open Chick-fil-A of Northport with her husband, Blake. Gill also is very involved in the community, including the West Alabama Chamber of Commerce, serving on the chamber’s executive committee as vice president of community and leadership development. She also serves on the executive committee for Hospice of West Alabama. Active in Junior League of Tuscaloosa, she helped organize the city’s first Dragon Boat race last year.

Jheovanny Gomez
Gomez is co-owner of Jalapeños Mexican Grill in Northport and Tuscaloosa. He is vice chair of organizational development for the Chamber of Commerce of West Alabama and active in Druid City Business League, Minority Business Council of West Alabama and the executive committee of the Chamber of Commerce. He is an advisory board member for the magazine “Rising Tide,” which highlights west Alabama’s new business and economic development. He also serves on the board of Boys and Girls Clubs and on an advisory committee for Holt High School.

Carl Jamison
A certified public accountant, Jamison is a third-generation shareholder of JamisonMoneyFarmer IPC in Tuscaloosa. He joined JMF in 1980 and was admitted as a shareholder in 1987. His primary areas of concentration involve tax and audit. Civic and community activities include the Boys and Girls Club, First Tee of Tuscaloosa and the Tuscaloosa County Industrial Development Authority.

Bryan Kindred
Kindred has been president and CEO of DCH Health System since 1996. Earlier, he worked for National Healthcare Inc. and for Southeast Alabama Medical Center. He is a fellow of the American College of Healthcare Executives, a member of the Alabama Hospital Association board, a member of Coastal Insurance Risk Retention Group  Inc. and chair of the VHA Southeast board of directors and executive committee.

Jay Logan
Logan, in his second term on the Northport city council, is serving as council president. He helped steer the city out of deep financial crisis, earning the city two consecutive years of A+ Bond Ratings by S&P and an upgrade to AA- this year, and helped develop more flexible economic development policies, helping rank Northport as the seventh most business friendly city in the state. Logan works in the Tuscaloosa water systems engineering division.

Dara Longgrear

Dara Longgrear
Longgrear has served as executive director of the Tuscaloosa County Industrial Development Authority since 1986. During his tenure, TCIDA surpassed $3 billion in investments by domestic and foreign manufacturers. Prior to his position with TCIDA, he worked with the Birmingham Area Chamber of Commerce, the Calhoun County Chamber of Commerce in Anniston and the Home National Bank of Kansas, where he served as vice president of industrial recruitment and marketing. He is a past president of the Tuscaloosa Symphony Orchestra, the Economic Development Association of Alabama and the Alabama Germany Partnership.

Walt Maddox
Maddox has served as mayor of Tuscaloosa since 2009, and has been nationally recognized for his crisis management following the EF-4 tornado that destroyed 12 percent of the city on April 27, 2011. He was named Municipal Leader of the Year in 2012 by American City and County, and this year was elected president of the Alabama League of Municipalities. He has led initiatives to increase economic development, improve customer services with the implementation of Tuscaloosa 311 and provide quality pre-K education for academically at-risk four-year-old children. 

Jim Page
Page is the president and CEO of the Chamber of Commerce of West Alabama, with more than 1,100 member companies. He provides oversight for all chamber initiatives, including retail recruitment and The Edge - Center for Entrepreneurship and Innovation, a collaborative partnership among the Chamber, The University of Alabama and the city of Tuscaloosa. A graduate of Leadership Alabama, Page serves on the board of directors of the Business Council of Alabama, the Alabama School Readiness Alliance Pre-K Task Force and is chairman-elect of the board of directors of the Chamber of Commerce Association of Alabama.

William Poole III

William Poole III
Poole is serving his first term in the Alabama House of Representatives, District 63. After his first legislative session in 2011, Poole was identified by 19 out of 20 veteran lawmakers interviewed by the Mobile Press-Register as the top member out of 37 new lawmakers in the House. He serves on the Governor’s Office of Faith-Based and Community Initiatives, the Uniform Law Commission and the Alabama Law Institute. An attorney, Poole is Brookwood city attorney and a staff assistant for the U.S. House of Representatives Committee on Ways & Means.

Jason Walker
Walker is president of Walker Associates Inc., an engineering, planning and surveying firm located in Tuscaloosa. He recently has served as the project manager for the Downtown Tuscaloosa Redevelopment Project and currently is assisting the city of Tuscaloosa with the planning and administration associated with the April 2011 tornado recovery. Walker is vice chair of economic development for the Chamber of Commerce of West Alabama. He also is a past president of the Alabama Section of the American Society of Civil Engineers.

Fitzgerald Washington
Washington is general sales manager of the Buffalo Rock Co. - Tuscaloosa Distribution Center, where he is responsible for the division’s retail sales department for five West Alabama counties. He is chairman of the board of the Chamber of Commerce of West Alabama, and active in the Black Warrior Boy Scout Council, the BB&T Bank Advisory Board, the UA College of Continuing Studies’ board of visitors, the DCH Health Systems Foundation board of directors and Shelton State Community College. The Alabama Senate recently recognized  him for his outstanding achievements as a notable alumnus of Shelton State.

Susan West
West is in her second year as CEO of the Tuscaloosa Tourism & Sports Commission. She is the former assistant dean and director of the MBA Programs at the University of Al]abama. At TTSC, she and her team are positioning Tuscaloosa as a destination city for sporting events, meetings, reunions and leisure travel. An avid golfer, she serves on the board of directors at Indian Hills Country Club, Alabama Association of Destination Management Organizations, the Tuscaloosa County Alumni Association and the Chamber of Commerce of West Alabama.

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