Dr. Jimmy Stokes Headshot

Dr. Jimmy Stokes
GAEL Executive Director

Dr. Jimmy Stokes was selected to serve as the Executive Director of the Georgia Association of Educational Leaders (GAEL) effective July 1, 2012.

Dr. Stokes has served in a variety of roles in Georgia education in a career that encompasses over forty years. Jimmy Stokes has served as a Chemistry teacher, Assistant Principal, CTAE (Career, Technical, and Agriculture Education) Director, and as Principal of Haralson County, Greene County, and Monroe Area High Schools. Stokes taught at the collegiate level for over twenty years and has been a coach, referee, and announcer for athletic events at the collegiate, high school, and middle school levels.

Dr. Stokes has degrees from Middle Georgia College and the University of West Georgia, as well as a Bachelor's, Master's and Doctorate from University of Georgia. He is the state's only nationally certified School Hearing Officer, and presides over cases in five middle-Georgia counties. In addition to his work with those school systems, Jimmy serves the GASSP as the Legislative Liaison and Lobbyist.

Jimmy is married to Dr. Patricia Stokes and they reside in Madison. They have two daughters, Dona Franks of Madison who is an insurance inspector and Mary Firth of Atlanta who is a language arts teacher at Lakeside High School in DeKalb County. Jimmy is the President of the Rotary Club of Morgan County for 2012-2013. He served as the President of GAEL in 2005-2006.

GAEL Staff

Dr. Jimmy Stokes Executive Director

Patricia Myers Director of Conferences 706-250-4806
Dusty Smith Chief Operating Officer 706-250-4802
Ginny Smith Financial Coordinator 706-250-4801
Becky Dove Administrative Assistant 706-504-9078
Deborah White Director, Leadership Development (PT) 706-250-4804
Hal Beaver Director, School Improvement (PT) 706-250-4805
John Tippins Collections Support (PT) 706-250-4817
Don Splinter Adminstrative Support (PT)  
Main Office     706-250-4800

Board of Directors


President Ben Wiggins Oconee County Schools  
Past President Jody Barrow Fayette County Schools  
President Elect Jesse Davis Houston County Schools  
Treasurer Richard Bazemore Monroe County Schools  
GASSP President Wanda Law Gwinnett County Schools  
GASSP Member Jim Finch Monroe County Schools  
GAMSP President Melanie Sigler Jefferson County Schools  
GAMSP Member Connie Stovall Dawson City Schools  
GAESP President Elgin Mayfield Houston County Schools  
GAESP Member Todd Williford Emanuel County Schools  
GACIS President Bonnie Cochran Paulding County Schools  
GACIS Member Rodney Green Lowndes County Schols  
G-CASE President Greg McElwee NW Georgia RESA  
G-CASE Member Zabrina Cannady Houston County Schools  
GSSA President Mike Newton Jasper County Schools  
GSSA Member Aaron Geter Wilkinson County Schools  
GASPA President Ron Wade Fulton County Schools  
GASPA Member Valerie Suessmith Henry County Schools  
Ga LF      
SSTAGE President Kristie Long Effingham County Schools  
GELFA President Sheryl Cowart-Moss Georgia State University  
GaDOE Representative Caitlin Dooley GaDOE  
RESA Representative Rachel Spates West Georgia RESA  


Affiliate Executive Directors

GASSP- Melton Callahan 770-289-8759
GAMSP- Bob Heaberlin 706-250-4800, ext 4805
GAESP- Hal Beaver 706-250-4800, ext 4805
GACIS- Deborah White 706-250-4800, ext 4804
G-CASE- Sarah Burbach 706 474-4272
GSSA - John Zauner 404-413-8147
GASPA - Wilma Widmer 770-687-1299