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Three new individuals will join the Alabama State Port Authority’s board of directors at this month’s business meeting.

The authority owns and operates the State of Alabama’s deep-water port facilities at the Port of Mobile, one of the nation’s largest and fastest growing seaports. Established by legislative act in 2000, the nine-member board holds fiscal and policy oversight for the port.

A Tuesday release announced that Governor Kay Ivey has appointed Tony Cochran and Dr. Patricia Sims to represent both northern region board seats and Carl Jamison to represent the central region. The governor also reappointed Alvin Hope, who will serve a second term representing the southern region.

Pursuant to the Alabama Constitution and pertinent statutes, the State Senate will need to consider and confirm all four appointments during the legislature’s 2021 regular session.


Ivey informed all four appointees in respective letters, expressing her appreciation for their service and tasking them to be good stewards of public money. She noted that while also instilling trust in state government, the board members would be making important decisions affecting the citizens of Alabama.

“I’ve appointed individuals that have consistently demonstrated the necessary knowledge and leadership skills critical to economic expansion in Alabama,” Ivey said in a statement. “The success of our port is fundamental to Alabama businesses and jobs, and I’m confident these folks will contribute to the great work being done under John Driscoll and the board.”

Cochran is the owner and managing partner of Albertville-based CK Business Solutions, PC, holding over 40 years in business management consulting and accounting experience.

He is a CPA and a chartered global management accountant focused on business acquisitions and sales. Cochran holds leadership positions on numerous boards and commissions, including the Albertville Chamber of Commerce, Business Council of Alabama, the National Acoustic Neuroma Association and his recent appointment as chair of the Alabama Small Business Commission.

Sims is president of Drake State Community & Technical College in Huntsville.

She holds over 20 years of teaching and academic leadership experience and has authored a number of publications and presentations on college accreditation, workforce development, foundation planning and partnerships in education. Sims holds extensive experience in higher education accreditation and currently serves on the board of trustees and the executive council for the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC), the Burritt Memorial Committee and the University of Alabama College of Education Board of Advisors. She also serves on several other boards and councils, including Alabama Forever Wild, Alabama United and the Women’s Economic Development Council Foundation Board.

Jamison is a shareholder and chair of the executive committee for the Tuscaloosa firm JamisonMoneyFarmer, PC.

He holds over 35 years of attest, tax and consulting services to manufacturing, construction, medical and real estate industry clients. Jamison is past chair and currently serves on the executive committee for the Business Council of Alabama and is past chair and current board member for the Tuscaloosa County Industrial Development Authority and Progress PAC.

Hope is an attorney and shareholder of the Birmingham-headquartered law firm of Maynard Cooper Gale and has served on the Port Authority’s board since August 2015.

His legal practice includes economic development and incentives, public financing, health care, and labor and employment. Recognized as one of the best lawyers in America in the area of economic development, Hope serves on the board of trustees for the Alabama Center for Real Estate and is a member of the State Bar in both Alabama and Georgia.

Port Authority board chairman Bestor Ward welcomed the appointments, stating, “Their depth of experience is complementary to our board, and the synergy generated between our combined board and our new director will net opportunities for the port and the state.”

Port Authority director and chief executive officer John Driscoll added, “Both my management team and I look forward to working with our new members and leveraging their diverse skill set to advance Alabama’s seaport for economic development and jobs growth.”

Sean Ross is the editor of Yellowhammer News. You can follow him on Twitter @sean_yhn

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