Gov. Nathan Deal appoints new interim Georgia DFCS director

Tom Rawlings is the new interim director of the Division of Family and Children Services. Courtesy photo.

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Tom Rawlings is the new interim director of the Division of Family and Children Services. Courtesy photo.

Gov. Nathan Deal on Friday announced that he is moving Tom Rawlings from the Office of the Child Advocate to lead the state’s Division of Family and Children Services.

Rawlings, who is the director of the child advocacy office, is replacing interim DFCS Director Virginia Pryor, who announced her resignation earlier this month after less than a year in the position.

Rawlings will serve as interim director of DFCS beginning Wednesday.

“Throughout his extensive career in juvenile justice and child advocacy, Tom Rawlings has demonstrated a profound commitment to ensuring the health and well-being of young people across our state,” Deal said in a statement. “I am confident he will serve Georgia well.”

Before his work with the Office of the Child Advocate, Rawlings was a juvenile court judge in the Middle Judicial Circuit where he oversaw juvenile justice and child protection cases in five counties.

Pryor, who Deal appointed in November as DFCS’ interim director, told division employees on July 2 she would be going to work for Casey Family Programs, a nonprofit that focuses on foster care and child welfare in its Los Angeles field office.

Her last day is Friday.

Deal also appointed Rachel Davidson to be interim director of the Office of the Child Advocate. She is the deputy director of the office. Her appointment also begins on Wednesday.