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Governor Perdue Announces Key Staff Promotions

Thursday, July 5, 2007  Contact: Office of Communications 404-651-7774


Pat Wilson, Hannah Heck, Heather Teilhet Promoted to Key Administration Positions

ATLANTA – Governor Sonny Perdue announced today three key staff promotions and a revised organizational structure that will shape the operations of the office of the Governor for his second term.

Governor Perdue announced that Padgett “Pat” Wilson will be promoted to government affairs director overseeing state and federal legislative matters. Hannah Heck will be promoted to policy director, managing research and development of policy initiatives. Heather Teilhet will be promoted to director of public affairs and local government relations, managing communication with the media, local governments and external groups. These transitions will begin immediately.

“Our work has just begun tackling some of Georgia’s toughest challenges,” said Governor Sonny Perdue. “My leadership team’s experience in consensus building will help us to strengthen our relationships with the Georgia General Assembly, our congressional delegation, state and federal agencies and the public we serve.”

Until now Wilson has served as director of federal affairs for the state of Georgia, managing the Governor’s satellite office in Washington, D.C. In this role Wilson served as the Governor’s envoy to Georgia’s congressional delegation and the National Governors Association and other national organizations. In his new role as government affairs director, Wilson will relocate to Atlanta and continue to oversee federal affairs through an office in D.C., and also serve as the primary contact for the Georgia General Assembly.

Since 2004, Heck has served as a policy advisor to Governor Perdue. Her primary subject matter expertise has been public safety and general government, such as law enforcement, highway safety, corrections and technology. As policy director, Heck will manage the Governor’s team of policy advisors, overseeing all research and development of new and existing policy initiatives.

In 2004 Teilhet joined the Governor’s staff as the press secretary, the primary media spokesperson for the administration. As public affairs director, she will now manage communications in a broader sense, overseeing the Governor’s messaging with external groups and the media. Teilhet will also manage local government affairs for the office of the Governor, as the primary staff contact for city and county governments and their elected officers.

Heck replaces Trey Childress, who was appointed by Governor Perdue to lead the Office of Planning and Budget. Teilhet and Wilson are assuming new consolidated roles that were created to combine functional areas within the organizational structure of the office.

Biographies on Wilson, Heck and Teilhet are below:

Pat Wilson: As director of federal affairs for the state of Georgia, Pat Wilson opened the Washington, DC office for Governor Sonny Perdue in 2005. In this position he worked to promote the state’s agenda with Congress and federal agencies as the Governor’s representative to the Georgia congressional delegation, and convey gubernatorial positions to the National Governors Association and other groups. Prior to joining the Perdue Administration, Pat was director of governmental affairs at Greenberg Traurig, LLP, in Washington, DC. He also worked for the late U.S. Senator Paul D. Coverdell (R-GA), then Chairman of the Western Hemisphere Subcommittee of the Foreign Relations Committee, and U.S. Representative Nathan Deal (R-GA). Pat earned his undergraduate degree in political science with a focus on international relations and a minor in German from the University of Georgia. He and his wife, Melissa, have one son.

Hannah Heck: Hannah Heck served as the general government and criminal justice policy advisor for Governor Sonny Perdue since 2004. In this role she advanced the Governor’s legislative and policy agenda and advised the Governor on operational, budget, and policy direction for the state of Georgia, specifically on highway safety, corrections and technology issues, among others. Under the Governor’s direction, Heck worked to develop “CSI Georgia,” a child internet safety initiative. She also spearheaded the Governor’s Wireless Communities Georgia program, providing funding to rural communities to establish wireless broadband networks. Heck graduated Magna Cum Laude from Harvard University in Cambridge, MA with a Bachelor of Arts in Psychology. She and her husband Jeffery live in Cobb County.

Heather Teilhet: Teilhet, (previously Hedrick), began working for Governor Perdue as his press secretary and primary media spokesperson in 2004. She began her career at the state capitol in 1997 working for the Georgia General Assembly in the state Senate. She served as the director of public affairs for the Georgia State Board of Pardons and Paroles, managing the agency’s media communications and legislative affairs. Originally from Athens, Georgia, Heather graduated Cum Laude from the University of Georgia, where she earned a bachelor’s degree in journalism and political science. She earned a master’s degree in public administration from Georgia State University. Heather lives in Smyrna with her husband Rob.