Job responsibilities: Story teller. Rural Georgia aficionado. Center co-creator. 

Hometown: Terrell County, Georgia

Fav thing produced in rural GA:


Education: Ph.D. at Texas A&M University, master's and bachelor's degrees from Auburn University, as well as an associate's degree from ABAC 

Interim Director

Job responsibilities: Team captain. Policy expert. Center co-creator. 

Hometown: Waycross, Georgia

Fav thing produced in rural GA: "Might be an obvious one, but this time of year, the pecans for pecan pie are close to my heart!"

Education: Master's degree at Valdosta State University and bachelor's in agricultural economics at the University of Georgia

Associate Director

Job responsibilities: Events coordinator. Idea influencer. Office mom. 

Hometown: Tifton, Georgia

Fav thing produced in rural GA: "Fresh produce is my favorite product of rural Georgia. I love that there is a produce stand on every other corner in rural Georgia during the summers."

Education: Bachelor's degree in speech communications at Valdosta State University

Logistics & Operations Manager

Job responsibilities: Creative writer. Documenter. Antique shopper. 

Hometown: Sumter County, Georgia

Fav thing produced in rural GA: "Georgia pines. The number of everyday products that are made using Georgia timber is absolutely mind-boggling. Our family's timber is an investment that future generations will reap the benefits of as well."

Education: Bachelor's in communication from Auburn University and a master's in urban and regional planning from Virginia Tech

Communication Specialist
Janet Cochran Headshot 2.jpg

Job responsibilities: Tourism specialist. Project seeker. North Georgia champion. 

Hometown: Jacksonville, Florida, now residing in Tunnel Hill, Georgia

Fav thing produced in rural GA: " Apples!  I live close to Ellijay, Georgia's Apple Capitol, and there is nothing like apple fried pies made on site at some of the area apple houses."

Education: Bachelor's in communication from Lee University in Cleveland, Tennessee

Project Manager


Stanley M. Fletcher - Professor of Policy, Center for Rural Prosperity and Innovation + Abraham Baldwin Agricultural College 

Rural Health and Innovation Center at Mercer University

Georgia Department of Agriculture (GDA)

Dr. Kent Wolfe - Goldenhorn Consulting

Dr. Sharon Kane - UGA Center for Agribusiness and Economic Development (CAED)

Paul Umbach + Angie Vincent - Tripp Umbach

Eloise Stewart - Eloise Design Co.