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Gardner named trustee of hospital association
James E. Gardner Jr., president and chief executive officer of Northeast Georgia Health System, was elected to the Board of Trustees of the Georgia Hospital Association at the association’s annual convention in Atlanta.
Gardner was named to his current post in March 2004. He previously served in the same capacity at Wyoming Medical Center in Casper, Wyo. He holds a master’s degree in health administration from the Medical College of Virginia in Richmond, Va., and a Bachelor of Science degree in finance from Virginia Commonwealth University, also in Richmond.
“We are delighted to have Jim Gardner join GHA’s Board of Trustees,” said Joseph Parker, president of GHA. “His dedication to the health care field and passion for helping people make him a great addition.”

Cottrell named to State Board of Economic Development
D. Michael Cottrell of Dahlonega has been named by Gov. Sonny Perdue to the State Board of Economic Development. Cottrell, 55, is chairman of Cottrell Inc., a large over-the-road car-haul manufacturer. He previously served as president and chief executive officer of the company.
He serves as chairman of the Lumpkin County Development Authority, a director on the board of the United Community Bank of Dahlonega, and a member of the North Georgia College & State University Foundation board of trustees and business advisory council. Cottrell earned a bachelor’s degree from Southern Polytechnic State University.
He and his wife, Lynn, have three children, as well as three children from a previous marriage, and three grandchildren.

Shope named administrator of Rushton & Co.
Anthony Shope has been named firm administrator of Rushton & Co., where he will lead all phases of administration, personnel, finances and marketing of the firm.
Working directly with senior management, Shope will help establish a unified and strategic approach to firm-wide policy setting, problem solving and decision making. He is also responsible for planning, organizing, directing and controlling the day-to-day operations and implementation of firm policies.
Prior to joining Rushton & Co., Shope served at Fieldale Farms as assistant general manager in the further processing division and then as assistant controller for Fieldale Corp.

Waldrip to open auction house
Veteran auctioneer Lee Waldrip has announced the opening of a new auction house at 1769 U.S. 129, just south of Cleveland. The first auction will take place Saturday at 10 a.m.
Waldrip, who entered the auction business in 1947, said it is not time to retire.
“It’s too much fun,” he said. “I especially like meeting the people.”
The auction will include tractors, construction equipment, tools, hardware, furniture and antiques.

Braswell, Gober promoted at McCranie & Burns
McCranie & Burns, a Gainesville accounting firm, has announced the promotion of Mandy Braswell to audit manager and Tammie Gober to tax manager.
Braswell is a certified public accountant and holds a degree in accounting from Georgia Southern University. She began her career with the Georgia Department of Audits before joining the firm of Windham Brannon.
Gober, also a CPA, holds an accounting degree from Auburn University. She began her career with the firm of Coopers & Lybrand.
She also spent three years with Perot Systems Corp. as manager of corporate reporting.

Berry joins ETCON Staffing
Trish Berry has joined ETCON Staffing Services as the new director of sales. She has more than 20 years experience in the staffing industry and has won numerous awards for sales and profitability.

Strain appointed to state board
Edward E. Strain III of Cornelia has been named to the State Board of Registration for Residential and General Contractors by Gov. Sonny Perdue.
Strain is a partner in the law firm of Cathey & Strain. He serves on the board of governors for the American Association of Justice and has served as president of the Mountain Judicial Circuit bar association. He has also served as vice president of the Georgia Trial Lawyers Association and now serves on the executive committee. Strain earned both a bachelor’s degree and a law degree from the University of Georgia. He and his wife, Barbara, have two grown children.