Gov. Nathan Deal announced today that the management of the Georgia Military Affairs Coordinating Committee will return to the state as part of the strategic Defense Initiative that got underway late last year. He also announced that the committee's executive director, retired Maj. Gen. David Bockel, would be joining the Governor's Office of Workforce Development as liaison for Veterans Programs, and that Charles Hunsaker would become assistant to the director of the Georgia Defense Initiative.
Under the leadership of former Secretary of the Navy Will Ball and executive director Rogers Wade, the Governor's Defense Initiative has spent the past six months identifying both challenges and opportunities for the state's defense economy. The members of GMACC, which was created by then-Gov. Zell Miller and the Georgia Chamber of Commerce in 1994, have played a key role in that process.
"At this stage in our efforts to not only support but grow Georgia's defense economy, we believe it makes sense to align GMACC more closely with the resources of the Georgia Department of Economic Development and the Defense Initiative," said Deal. "We are grateful for the Georgia Chamber's long-standing leadership on this important issue and look forward to continuing a partnership that has proved to be invaluable in our efforts to shield our state from defense cuts and closures."
Bockel, who has served as GMACC's executive director for the past two years, will assume a new role as the liaison for Veterans Programs within the GOWD beginning July 1. In this position, he will be responsible for developing and overseeing programs to connect Georgia's unemployed veterans with employers who can benefit from their skills and training. He will continue to serve GMACC in an advisory capacity.
Chuck Hunsaker has been senior manager of Defense Issues in the Global Commerce section of the Georgia Department of Economic Development. He had a distinguished career in the Army and retired as a lieutenant colonel before joining the department. Hunsaker's experience also includes serving as military affairs adviser to one of Georgia's congressmen.