Spotlight on Baldwin County: Movers & Shapers

The individuals who help shape the communities of Baldwin County

Felisha Anderson

Anderson, a lifelong resident of Baldwin County, is director of archives and history and historic projects coordinator for the Baldwin County Commission, documenting the county’s history. She has two associate degrees from Faulkner State Community College, a bachelor’s from the University of Mobile and an MBA from the University of Phoenix. She is vice president of Area Women Action Group and in Delta Sigma Theta Sorority Inc.


Jo Bonner

Bonner is president of the University of South Alabama. Earlier, he was chief of staff to Gov. Kay Ivey, vice chancellor for economic development at the University of Alabama, and represented Alabama’s First Congressional District in the U.S. House of Representatives. In 2020, he was inducted into the Alabama Academy of Honor. The Business Council of Alabama created the inaugural “Congressman Jo Bonner Spirit of Leadership Award” and honored Bonner as its first recipient. He is a University of Alabama graduate.

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Kenny Breal

Breal is president of North Baldwin Infirmary. He joined Infirmary Health in 2015 as director of imaging services. He was promoted to vice president of clinical operations in 2017 and helped establish COVID-19 internal and external testing programs. He earned his bachelor’s degree from the University of South Alabama. He serves on several committees across Infirmary Health and volunteers on special projects across south Alabama and Mississippi.


Wesley Carpenter

Carpenter is co-founder of wealth advisory team The Harty Carpenter Group, in Fairhope, and active with Merrill Lynch. He was named to Barron’s “America’s Top 1200 Financial Advisors” (2021 and 2022) and “Top 40 Advisors Under 40” by Financial Planning (2021 and 2020). He is a graduate of the University of Alabama. Carpenter is active with the Eastern Shore Chamber of Commerce, Alabama Leadership Initiative, Leadership Baldwin County, Community Foundation of South Alabama, Business Council of Alabama, Coastal 150, American Red Cross and Rotary Club of Mobile.

Ken Grimes

Grimes is administrator for the city of Orange Beach, managing day-to-day operations of the city. He is president of the Alabama City County Management Association and received the ACCMA Sam Gaston Vocational Excellence Award in 2016. Prior to coming to the city, he was president/CEO of the Alabama Gulf Coast Area Chamber of Commerce (now Coastal Alabama Business Chamber) and the Bessemer Area Chamber of Commerce. He is a Troy State University graduate with a master’s from the University of Southern Mississippi.


Christina Hellmich

Hellmich is director of workforce development and governmental affairs for the Eastern Shore Chamber of Commerce. She recently created and implemented the Baldwin Connect Career Expo. She holds a bachelor’s degree in communications, credentials from the U.S. Chamber Foundation Business Leadership Program and is a graduate of Leadership Baldwin County. She has served on the Young Life Eastern Shore board.


Ralph Hellmich

Hellmich is mayor of Foley after 16 years on the City Council. He retired in 2019 from a 39-year career with the State of Alabama Oil and Gas Board, where he served as the regional operations supervisor for southern Alabama. He is a University of Alabama graduate. Hellmich chairs the Riviera Utilities board and is a former member of the Foley Planning Commission. He is a lifetime member of the Wolf Bay Watershed Watch and president-elect of the University of Alabama Geological Sciences Advisory Board.


Rob Karcz

Karcz is owner of American Pride Petroleum, the former Smiley’s gas station and convenience store, now a veteran-owned operation serving north Baldwin County. He and his husband, Mike Carter, are active in the Bay Minette community, supporting the North Baldwin Chamber of Commerce, Bay Minette fire and police departments, William F. Green Veterans home and the local VFW Post 3568 and Auxiliary, as well as local schools.


Lee Lawson

Lawson is president and CEO of the Baldwin County Economic Development Alliance. Earlier, he worked in economic development for PowerSouth Energy Cooperative. He is a graduate of Troy University. Lawson has been active with the Business Council of Alabama board, the Baldwin County Career Tech Education Council, the Baldwin Judicial Selection Committee, the Troy University Center for International Business and Economic Development advisory board and the University of South Alabama Center for Real Estate and Economic Development. He is a graduate of Leadership Alabama.

Tyler Morgan

Morgan is director of career and business development for the Gateway Initiative, a collaboration between the South Baldwin Chamber of Commerce and the Coastal Alabama Business Chamber, focusing on workforce training and development in south Baldwin County. She taught junior high school for six years, managed events and sales for Perdido Beach Resort for three years, and later joined the Mobile Convention and Visitors Bureau. She also manages her own event planning/art business, Bella Inspired LLC.

Brad Pitt

Pitt is executive vice president and chief administrative office of Riviera Utilities. He has worked in the utility industry for more than 40 years, with 26 years at Mobile Gas Service Corp. in Mobile. He plans to retire this summer and open a leadership consulting business. Pitt is a University of Mobile graduate, with additional credentials in business fields. He is the Eastern Shore Chamber of Commerce board chair, a Leadership Baldwin County Steering Committee member, past president of the Daphne/Spanish Fort Rotary Club and past Baldwin County Economic Development Alliance board member.

Brandon Peed

Peed is owner of Premier Automation, which designs and builds specialty machinery, controls and robotics for a wide array of customers, from pharmaceuticals to aerospace. In addition, he is also vice president of engineering for NAVMFG, a supplier to the US Navy and naval shipbuilders. He is president of the Bay Minette Rotary Club, vice chairman of the North Baldwin Chamber of Commerce and board member for Baldwin County Historic Development Commissioners.


Margaret Roley

Roley is CEO of South Baldwin Regional Medical Center, after serving 17 years as chief nursing officer. She holds bachelor’s, master’s and doctoral degrees in nursing from the University of South Alabama. Roley serves on the boards of Baldwin County Economic Development Alliance, South Baldwin Chamber of Commerce and United Way of Baldwin County, and is a member of Coastal Alabama Business Chamber, Central Baldwin Chamber of Commerce and G.U.M.B.O.


Joe Stough III

Stough is executive vice president and COO of Infirmary Health System. He is a University of Alabama graduate with a master’s from the University of Alabama at Birmingham, and he is a Fellow of the American College of Healthcare Executives. In 2020, Stough served as a Real Men Wear Pink representative for the American Cancer Society, where he finished as the top fundraiser in the state, raising more than $40,000. He serves on the boards of the Alabama Hospital Association, Baldwin County Economic Development Alliance and Eastern Shore Chamber of Commerce and the board of visitors for UA’s Culverhouse School of Business.

Sherry Sullivan

Sullivan is serving her first term as mayor of Fairhope. A Fairhope native, she worked for the city for almost 17 years. She chaired the 69th annual Fairhope Arts and Crafts Festival and holds leadership roles with the Alabama League of Municipalities, Baldwin Pops, American Heart Association Executive Leadership Team for Heart Walk, Eastern Shore Metropolitan Planning Organization and is past president of the Kiwanis Club of Fairhope.


Eddie Tyler

Tyler is superintendent of Baldwin County Public Schools, where he taught and coached earlier for 25 years. He also served three years as superintendent of the Eufaula City School System. Tyler holds an undergraduate degree from the University of South Alabama and a master’s from the University of West Alabama. He is a graduate of the University of Alabama Superintendent’s Academy and is a member of the School Superintendents of Alabama and the Council for Leaders in Alabama Schools.


Phillip West

West is director of the Coastal Resources Department of the city of Orange Beach. His department is responsible for beach restoration and management, emergency management, outdoor recreation, grants and more. He is secretary of the Alabama Trails Commission and serves as a board member on the Northern Gulf Chapter of American Shore & Beach Preservation Association, the Gulf Coast Center for EcoTourism & Sustainability and the Backcountry Trail Foundation.

Gia Wiggins

Wiggins owns human resources firm Morale Resource LLC and founded Auditocity Inc., which works in compliance auditing software. She holds a BA from Grambling State University, an MBA from California State University, and a Ph.D. from the University of South Alabama, plus added human resources certifications. She has been active with Mobile Area Chamber of Commerce, Eastern Shore Chamber of Commerce, Daphne Kappa League Advisory Board, and is vice president for the National Association of Women Business Owners Alabama chapter. Listed among Focus Women’s Conference 40 Women Over 40 and Forbes Next 1000, she is also an alumna of the Goldman Sachs 10,000 Small Business program.

This appeared in the May 2022 issue of Business Alabama.

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