Writer: Kelly Simmons
New directors will take the reins of UGA Public Service and Outreach programs in January, following the retirements of two longtime public service professionals.
Rob Gordon, current director of the UGA Archway Partnership, will become director of the Carl Vinson Institute of Government, effective Jan. 1, 2021. Gordon will succeed Laura Meadows, who retires Dec. 31, 2020 after more than 30 years in state government, 11 of those at the UGA Institute of Government, almost 10 as director.
Longtime economic development professional Matthew Colvin has been selected as the University of Georgia’s next economic development director in Atlanta, succeeding Sean McMillan, who also retires Dec. 31, 2020 having served as UGA’s first Atlanta-based economic development director since 2013.
“Both Meadows and McMillan are dedicated public servants and both have improved UGA and the state in measurable ways,” said Jennifer L. Frum, UGA vice president for Public Service and Outreach.
“We are very fortunate in Public Service and Outreach to have an abundance of strong leaders, whose priority is making the state more prosperous for all Georgians,” Frum said.
Gordon, a native of Jesup, Georgia, joined Archway as director in 2015. There, he is responsible for the unit’s overall strategic direction and programs that address a wide-range of locally-identified community priorities intended to strengthen economic development.
From 2010 to 2014, Gordon worked for the Institute of Government as manager of its economic development and fiscal analysis unit, overseeing the Applied Demography Program, Tax and Expenditure Data Center, and Fiscal Analysis Program.
“Rob’s previous experience at the Vinson Institute, his years of leading the Archway Partnership and his governmental service have prepared him for this new position,” Frum said. “I am confident he will continue to elevate the institute’s service to governments of all levels in Georgia.”
Colvin is currently the executive director of economic development for the University System of Georgia. Prior to that he worked on economic development and workforce initiatives first for Electric Cities of Georgia, then as state initiatives director for the Georgia Department of Economic Development.
“Matt has a deep understanding of economic development and the inextricable link between higher education, innovation and job creation,” Frum said.
Michelle Elliott, an operations coordinator with the Archway Partnership, will serve as interim director. A search for a permanent director will launched after the first of the year.