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Georgia Political Papers and Oral History Program

The Georgia Political Papers and Oral History Program is comprised of over 3,000 linear feet of archival collections, along with an extensive number of oral history interviews, that document the unique political culture of the state of Georgia.

Wayne Garner

Wayne Garner attended Douglas County High School and West Georgia College. Garner served in the Georgia State Senate from 1980 until 1993, while there he chaired the Senate Committee on Corrections, was named majority leader and later, President Pro Tempore. In 1993, he was appointed chairperson of the Georgia Board of Pardons and Parole by Governor Miller, then Commissioner of the Georgia Department of Corrections. He is now President of the Garner Group, a governmental affairs firm based in Carrollton, GA, and elected Mayor of Carrollton in November of 2003, serving two consecutive terms that will expire December 31, 2011.; Interviewed by Dr. Mel Steely on June 9, 2009 at UWG-TV.; Steely begins be recounting the last interview held with Garner about a decade before. The conversation begins by discussing Garner's time in the Senate and the governor's role with the budget, until its passing at the end of the session. Garner then speaks of his progression towards the seat of correction commissioner and majority leader. Garner had served with several governors including Busbee, Harris, Miller and Barnes, discussing his time with each governor and the issues that arose. He spends much time speaking of Miller, the Hope Scholarship and the Georgia Lottery. Barnes is the next topic of conversation, speaking of district reapportionment and controversy over the state flag. Garner speaks of his own relationship with the press, especially when working as corrections commissioner. He then goes on to discuss Pierre Howard and Mark Taylor, the two lieutenant governors he had worked with. The conversation ends with a discussion of Garner's decision to run for mayor of Carrollton and the advancements that he had made with regard to the town's water plant and other quality of life issues, as well as Carrollton's relationship with the University of West Georgia.