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Three candidates named for Jackson county manager seat
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After a second search for candidates, the Jackson County Board of Commissioners has named three finalists for the position of county manager.

Oakwood City Manager Stan Brown, former Stephens County Administrator Darrell Hampton and former Upson County Manager Bob Zellner are the candidates. The commission must wait at least 14 days before making a decision, by law.

The job came open in February after Hoschton resident Crandall Jones was fired. Facing allegations of racial discrimination, the county settled with Jones for $330,000.

About 80 people applied for the job the first time it was advertised, but the commissioners weren’t successful in negotiating a deal with any of the finalists.

Brown served as transportation and public works director for Jackson County from 2002 to 2004, leaving to take the position of Oakwood’s manager. He has been involved in city and county governments since 1987, serving in public works for Carrollton, Athens-Clarke County, Castle Rock, Colo., and Laramie, Wyo.

Brown has a master’s degree in public administration from the University of West Georgia, and a bachelor’s in civil engineering from the U.S. Air Force Academy. He lives in Flowery Branch.

Hampton resigned from Stephens County in August after working a two-day notice, according to The Toccoa Record. The Stephens County commission chairman told the newspaper that Hampton was not forced to resign. Hampton, who served five years as administrator, received a severance package including at least $25,000, a rental vehicle, continued health insurance and $1,500 in gas expenses.

Since 1993, Hampton also has worked as Sumter County administrator, a regional representative for the Georgia Department of Community Affairs, city manager for Morrow and assistant chief administrative officer for Americus. He has a master’s degree in public administration from Columbus College, with graduate work in public administration at Auburn University, and a bachelor’s in community planning and development from Columbus College.

The Upson County Board of Commissioners terminated Zellner’s contract in September, according to The Thomaston Times. The commissioners said Zellner’s management style was not compatible with the county government. Zellner was county manager for 15 months.

Zellner has been manager for Lamar County, McDonough, Hampton and Villa Rica since 1983, with a 10-year stint as owner of Reems Jewelers in Thomaston. He has a bachelor’s degree in political science and sociology from the University of West Georgia and an associate’s in general business from the University of Georgia. Zellner has completed course work toward a master’s in public administration from Georgia State University.

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