Deal names transition team, says Riley will be chief of staff

Gov.-elect Nathan Deal on Wednesday named a transition team and an inaugural committee to help him navigate the busy next two months and announced that his long-time aide Chris Riley will remain his chief of staff.

See photos from the press conference

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Meeting with reporters in what will soon be his office at the Capitol, Deal said he has already launched two websites to help the public stay informed on progress in the transition and the inauguration: www.dealtransition.com and www.dealinaugural.com.

Rogers Wade, the chairman of the Georgia Public Policy Foundation, will lead Deal’s transition team, which also includes:

  • Pete Robinson, chairman of Troutman Sanders’ lobbying arm and a veteran of the Capitol lobbying corp. Deal’s team indicated that Robinson would stop lobbying while serving on the transition.
  • John Watson, Gov. Sonny Perdue’s former chief of staff and the founder of a major Atlanta lobbying firm. He is now an executive in a commercial real estate firm.
  • Philip Wilheit, the president of a Gainesville-based packaging firm and a major Deal donor and business partner.

Leading the inaugural committee will be Jay Morgan, a former campaign manager and a long-time lobbyist and Republican activist, and Tricia Pridemore, a Deal supporter and founder of the conservative 912 Project.

Riley is Deal’s long-time aide who served as chief of staff while Deal was in Congress and managed Deal’s successful run for governor.

Deal had kind words for the man he defeated Tuesday night, Democratic nominee Roy Barnes.

“Roy Barnes and I have been friends for a very long time,” Deal said. “I still consider him as a friend.”

Deal said some of Barnes’ ideas have merit and he will consider them as he moves forward.

But first, he said, the transition will begin its work of decoding and evaluating all of state government. It’s a daunting task that will lead up to noon on Jan. 10 when he takes the oath of office.

195 comments Add your comment

picassokat

November 3rd, 2010
12:14 pm

All lobbyists, how fitting. Georgia now has the best Governor that money can buy.

James Carville

November 3rd, 2010
12:15 pm

Let the good ol’ boy games begin

Chocomega

November 3rd, 2010
12:15 pm

This state is truly moving backwards. A man with so many ethical issues and can still get in office. SMH

SRH

November 3rd, 2010
12:18 pm

As expected, no diversity at all in this team…. extremely good-ole-boy.

wondering

November 3rd, 2010
12:20 pm

Georgia, owned and operated by… which lobby gave the most money?

Alice B

November 3rd, 2010
12:20 pm

The man did nothing in Congress, except try to line his own pockets. (And was incompetent at that too, judging by the fact that he’s flat broke). Good going, Georgia voters — I’m sure this will work out well.

SEEYALATERDEMS

November 3rd, 2010
12:20 pm

What is fitting is that the liberals got what they deserved across this great state!
Roy was not a good leader the first time he was there…..Oh yeah, by the way , where was all of the liberal voters that showed up two years ago????? Maybe you guys realize that you don’t vote someone in just because they can speak well.

That Guy

November 3rd, 2010
12:23 pm

Hold on one minute. We’re told that the troutman sanders lobbyist will suspend his lobbying while serving on the transition team. Bwaaaahahahahaha.

Michael

November 3rd, 2010
12:23 pm

Wow, I voted for John Monds, the only candidate that is not a crook. Why did we as Georgians sacrifice our values and put this man in office? I hope he does well but I’m disappointed with us as a whole as Georgia voters becoming clones for the GOP.

jedrider

November 3rd, 2010
12:23 pm

i know chris riley….he is a great guy. i am a Dem, but i trust him..

bart

November 3rd, 2010
12:24 pm

Georgians have voted. Three out of the five are lobbyists. How appropriate. If you look at this team, there are no minorities. We can already see this will be a right wing administration. We have a governor who has ethics, legal, and financial problems, so we know that we the taxpayers will be bailing him out of his financial problems while the common folk get the shaft. Deal has also bragged about voting against the Voting Rights Act, and has said he would consider secession. Our lt. governor is an adulterer. What will this look like to business and industry wanting to locate here? Hope I’m wrong.

Don

November 3rd, 2010
12:24 pm

I wish that Alice would furnish just some small bit of evidence that Deal is flat broke.

Embarrassed

November 3rd, 2010
12:24 pm

I am very embarrassed by the fact that in 2 years we may have a gov. on trial for corruption. This state is 47th in education. It showed yesterday. Just embarrassing to the rest of the country. Someone needs to keep an eye on how he plans to pay back all of that money on the gov’s salary. You see all of the lobbyists standing behind him? Enough said…

Alice B

November 3rd, 2010
12:25 pm

“I wish that Alice would furnish just some small bit of evidence that Deal is flat broke.”

Actually, genius, that’s been well publicized. Don’t follow the news much, do you?

Alice B

November 3rd, 2010
12:27 pm

gershom

November 3rd, 2010
12:29 pm

Maybe Deal will use all that lobbyist cash to eradicate georgia’s deficit.

Malt Vinegar

November 3rd, 2010
12:30 pm

This country is farking sick of BHO and his Democrate buddies and yesterday at the polls the people spoke loudly. Get Ready for Newt/Palin in 2012. I still believe in TERM LIMITS for all elected offices at the local, state and federal levels.

roy b

November 3rd, 2010
12:31 pm

‘hey nate ol boy, you beat me fair and square. good luck and btw, here is my number when you are ready to hire an attorney to help defend you against the many pending ethics charges.’

Road Scholar

November 3rd, 2010
12:31 pm

All lobbyists…I guess Deal had to quit Congress since the national vote was to “take my country back” from the special interests. And he turns around and names ALL lobbyists for his transition team! Priceless!

Jughead Obama

November 3rd, 2010
12:32 pm

Congratulations to Gov. Elect Turd Sammich, and condolences to former Gov. Douche Bag. Or is that the other way around?

Howard Beale

November 3rd, 2010
12:32 pm

Deal ran ads claiming that attorney Roy Barnes represented a “child molester;” then, after defeating him, Deal turns around and proclaims that he and Roy “have been friends for a very long time,” adding, “I still consider him as a friend.” This is sickening.

Jughead Obama

November 3rd, 2010
12:34 pm

Yes it is. I hate Roy Barnes and Ga. Democrats with every fiber of my being.

Howard Beale

November 3rd, 2010
12:35 pm

“Newt/Palin in 2012.” Lord help us all.

Politi Cal

November 3rd, 2010
12:36 pm

Get a grip Howard; this is politics.

Daniel

November 3rd, 2010
12:37 pm

I am loving reading all the pouty, whiny comments all over the blogs because Deal won. We the people elected him using the ballot box. He’s your next governor. So deal with it. BWAHAHAHAHA!

bart

November 3rd, 2010
12:37 pm

Gershom, I think Deal will use all that lobbyist money to get himself out of debt. Too bad most folks couldn’t see that Deal was running for Governor to line his own pockets like he tried unsuccessfully to do while in Congress. Oh, well, if all these lobbyists pay off his debt for him, maybe our tax money is safe.

Scared

November 3rd, 2010
12:37 pm

It is what it is. I would like to know why there is no diversity on his team? Sending out a great message right out of the gate.

Scared

November 3rd, 2010
12:38 pm

I’m with you on that Bart.

Wes

November 3rd, 2010
12:38 pm

picassokat be fair. I’m sure there are better governors that could be bought

chc4

November 3rd, 2010
12:38 pm

Thank god Roy Barnes is gone. This time it’s for good!!

Daniel

November 3rd, 2010
12:39 pm

“No diversity on the team.” So I assume this is racist, and thus, all Republicans are racist.

political girl

November 3rd, 2010
12:42 pm

Now that the Republicans are in power, I will be waiting for all the change they will bring, by Jan. 1st I will expect to see unemployment at 2% and the economy should be booming, Come on Repulicans make it rain.

nickyhicky

November 3rd, 2010
12:42 pm

Will Ken Cronan be on his team in any manner? No Cronan people have been seen on TV or in the papers at his gig last night. Is Deal distancing himself from his crooked past?

political girl

November 3rd, 2010
12:45 pm

Raw deal from Nathan Steal.

Chigger

November 3rd, 2010
12:46 pm

What transition? Seat is still warm and will be the SOS. What did Sonny do? N O T H I N G. It is all about the party. “To hell with the taxpayers” is their motto. There was big money being funnelled into the state by the GOP. That is how it is and how it always will be with their appointments of judges and etc in the state. It is who you are and how much is in your wallet to get to play with the big boys. I don’t dare hear the &*&#ing and moaning that will start.

bob sosebee

November 3rd, 2010
12:47 pm

I AM AFRAID OUR STATE HAS TAKEN A LARGE STEP BACKWARDS. THE PICTURE SEEMS TO BE FROM THE 1950′S , NO AFRO-AMERICANS, NO HISPANICS, ONLY ONE FEMALE
AND SHE IS ON THE “BIG PARTY COMMITTEE” ….I FEAR OUR STATE IS NOW TOTALLY CONTROLLED BY THE BIG CORPORATIONS AND THE SUPER RICH…HOW ELSE COULD A PERSON ON THE SALARY OF A CONGRESSMAN OR GOVERNOR SO EASILY REPAY MILLIONS IN DEBT..MR. DEAL IS A NICE MAN AND I HOPE I AM WRONG, BUT ONLY TIME WILL TELL….LETS ALL HOPE FOR GOOD LUCK AND GOD’S BLESSINGS IN THE COMING YEARS….

Tramarci

November 3rd, 2010
12:47 pm

I don’t know how to feel about the ghetto grandmothers comment. Everyone deserves a chance, to prove themselves. So Deal is in, but Governor please explain what you meant when you said ghetto grandmothers.

Lisa

November 3rd, 2010
12:47 pm

I guess Deal and Riley will open up a new LLC in the Gov’s office.

bart

November 3rd, 2010
12:49 pm

Daniel, I am surprised you don’t see the potential conflict of interest with so many lobbyists on the transition team. And, no, the fact that there is no diversity on the team does not necessarily mean that Republicans are racists. Some are, some aren’t. However, I do want to repeat myself that Deal has bragged about the fact he voted against the Voting Rights Act, and he has said he would support secession. That says something, I think, to a lot of minorities.

whiteboy

November 3rd, 2010
12:50 pm

The choice was between “dumb and dumber”, but we managed to elect the dumbest! I guess we will have to “Deal” with it?! What a system!

Tramarci

November 3rd, 2010
12:50 pm

The democratic party was stupid to endorse Roy Barnes. Roy does not represent CHANGE.

bart

November 3rd, 2010
12:53 pm

And Tramarci, I forgot about the “ghetto grandmothers” comment. That is another statement that speaks loudly to minorities. I doubt Deal is a racist but he has certainly reached out to that segment of the population through his words.

Robert

November 3rd, 2010
12:53 pm

Only 52.33% of WE THE PEOPLE voted for Deal

south georgia possum

November 3rd, 2010
12:54 pm

To Howard Beale and some of you other whiners….Thank goodness Nathan Deal is a man of a lot more character than you and many of your friends. He just ran one helluva negative campaign against Roy Barnes, but is man enough to not hold grudges and talk down his former opponet. That takes some real character..something Nathan Deal has a lot of…and something you know absolutely nothing about. This kind of character is what will makeNathan Deal a great governor for ALL OF GEORGIA .

Southpaw

November 3rd, 2010
12:55 pm

I fold.Voters are not informed anymore.

SavannahDude

November 3rd, 2010
12:56 pm

Funny how all the liberals who allegedly want a color blind society are crying that there are no “minorities” in the picture. I thought color was not supposed to matter? Would you say the same if it were all blacks up there? Where is the diversity? boo hoo hoo, cry me a river. Such a double standard.

lenny

November 3rd, 2010
12:56 pm

Just what Ga. needs a NAT for Governor.

bart

November 3rd, 2010
12:56 pm

South Georgia Possum, I hope you’re right. But with Deal’s ethical and legal shenanigans, it’s hard for some of us to see how he’s a man of character.

James

November 3rd, 2010
12:56 pm

DEAL WON. He gets to choose who he wants. Deal with it you sore hypocritical losers.

russ

November 3rd, 2010
12:57 pm

it’s a shame all you braying nay sayers didnt vote, isnt it?