Georgia Gov. Brian Kemp has proposed to waivers for how the state can spend federal health care dollars. One intends to offer Medicaid coverage to the state’s very poor who are not covered now — if they meet certain requirements. A much costlier program would subsidize the private insurance market in Georgia to help lower the premiums of higher-income people. The total cost of the two programs to the state and federal governments over a five-year run is forecast at over $1 billion. (PHOTO by Bob Andres / bandres@ajc.com)
Photo: The Atlanta Journal-Constitution
Photo: The Atlanta Journal-Constitution

Kemp appoints five new Georgia Board of Regents members

Gov. Brian Kemp on Friday tapped four men and a woman, some who had key ties to his campaign, to the Georgia’s Board of Regents, the 19-member group that oversees operations at the state’s largest public colleges and universities.

The new members are:

  • Cade Joiner, a Brookhaven resident who founded a document shredding company and is chairman of the National Federation of Independent Businesses of Georgia.
  • T. Dallas Smith, a real estate executive who runs his own firm and chairs the real estate committee at Georgia State University, his alma mater.
  • Harold Reynolds, a Lake Oconee resident who is chief executive officer of BankSouth Holding Co., located in Greene County.
  • Everett Kennedy, a Bulloch County resident who is chief executive officer and broker of Berkshire Hathaway Kennedy Realty in Statesboro.
  • Lowery May, a University of Georgia graduate who serves on the Georgia Student Finance Commission.

Some of the new members have close ties to Kemp, who took office last year. Joiner was an early ally of Kemp's campaign for governor who was tapped to co-chair a task force that aimed to cut business regulations. Reynolds was one of his most prominent backers, and served as chairman of Kemp's campaign team. Smith was a key member of a coalition Kemp launched in 2018 aimed at attracting more diverse voters.

"For many years, I have worked closely with each of these individuals and found them to be honest, hardworking, and committed to our state's long-term success. I am truly honored to name them to the Board of Regents to serve our top-notch university system with integrity and lead by example," Kemp said in a statement. "On behalf of all Georgians, I want to thank the outgoing members for their service."

The terms of five members - Chris Cummisky, Laura Marsh, E. Scott Smith, Ben Tarbutton III and Thomas Rogers Wade - expired on Jan. 1.

The board’s next meeting is scheduled for Jan. 8.

Staff writer Greg Bluestein contributed to this report.

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