Spotlight on Montgomery County: Movers & Shapers

The individuals who help shape the communities of Montgomery County

Brad Armagost is regional president over the Montgomery, Pike Road and Auburn markets for CB&S Bank. A University of Alabama graduate, he has served in the U.S. Army Reserves, including the U.S. Army School of Computer Science at Fort Ben Harrison. He also has completed the Bank Administration Institute’s Graduate School in Bank Finance Management and the Stonier Graduate School of Banking at Georgetown University. He is active with River Region United Way, Jackson Hospital Foundation, Habitat for Humanity and is a member of the broadcast crew for the Saint James School football radio program.

Jannah Morgan Bailey is president and CEO of the River Region United Way. A Montgomery native, she is a graduate of Auburn University at Montgomery and worked 21 years as executive director of Child Protect, Children’s Advocacy Center. A member of the Montgomery Public School Board, she is active in Montgomery Sunrise Rotary Club and a graduate of Leadership Montgomery and Leadership Alabama. In 2018, Bailey received the Leading Lady Award for Professional and Community Service from the Girl Scouts of Southern Alabama. Her family was selected as a Family of the Year in 2010 by the Family Guidance Center.

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Melvin J. Brown is superintendent of Montgomery Public Schools. He has 24 years of school administrative experience, most recently in Ohio, as a superintendent, administrator, principal, teacher and coach. A James Madison University graduate, he holds a master’s from Virginia Commonwealth University and an Ed.D. from Ohio State University. He is a 2021 honoree of Central Ohio’s “A Tribute to African Americans Committee Inc.” and is co-author of the book, “STEM Century: It Takes a Village to Raise a 21st Century Graduate.”

Anna Buckelew is president and CEO of the Montgomery Area Chamber of Commerce, after serving as executive vice president. She serves on the board of the Chamber of Commerce Association of Alabama and is a director of the American Chamber of Commerce Executives Foundation. A graduate of the University of Alabama, she has additional credentials from the U.S. Chamber of Commerce Institutes for Organization Management at the University of Georgia.



Kemba Chambers is president of Trenholm State Community College in Montgomery. She has 25 years of higher education experience at Trenholm, at other community colleges and with the Alabama Community College System. A graduate of Chattahoochee Valley Community College, she has a bachelor’s from Columbus State University, a master’s from Troy University and a doctorate in higher education administration from Auburn University.


Liston Eddins is broker/owner of Eddins Properties Inc. and has been working in real estate for 45 years. He is a graduate of Auburn University and served as 1975 Auburn football captain under Coach Ralph “Shug” Jordan. A former chairman of the YMCA of Greater Montgomery, he now chairs its finance committee. He also is chairman of the Industrial Development Board for the city of Montgomery, where he works with city, county and chamber of commerce leadership.


Dan Harris is a Montgomery County commissioner. He is retired from Mutual of Omaha Insurance Companies, where he worked more than 20 years, most recently as vice president and assistant general counsel. A Montgomery native, he is a graduate of Alabama State University with a master’s from Auburn University at Montgomery and a J.D. degree from Creighton University School of Law. He is a graduate of Leadership Montgomery and Leadership Alabama. In addition to his duties as a commissioner, he is a practicing attorney. He serves on the board of One Place Family Justice Center and the Alabama Shakespeare Festival.

Dennis Mitchell Henry is president of Faulkner University, where he earlier taught law to undergraduate and graduate students. He also has taught dispute resolution at Faulkner’s Thomas Goode Jones School of Law and agriculture law at Auburn University. While teaching, he has practiced law for 29 years and is a founding member of Webster, Henry, Bradwell, Cohan, Speagle and DeShazo P.C. He also previously worked closely with Faulkner University’s legal counsel.

Jake Kyser is president of Jerry Kyser Builder Inc. and qualifying broker for Kyser Property Management Co. Inc. He also owns Central Restaurant, Tower Taproom and Lower Lounge in downtown Montgomery’s Alley Entertainment District. He is an Auburn University graduate. He serves on the board of the Greater Montgomery Home Builders Association and is active with Associated General Contractors of Alabama, Montgomery Area Chamber of Commerce Committee of 100 and Wright Flyers. He is a charter member of the River Bank & Trust board. Kyser was a finalist for the Alabama Restaurant and Hospitality Association “Restaurateur of the Year.”

Keith Lankford is superintendent of Pike Road Schools. He holds bachelor’s and master’s degrees from Troy University, an education specialist degree from Jacksonville State University and a doctorate from the University of Alabama. He is a U.S. Army and National Guard veteran. He has worked at almost every level in education, from paraprofessional to six years as superintendent, most recently with the Alexander City Schools.


Steven Reed is mayor of Montgomery, the first Black mayor in the city’s 200-year history. Earlier he was probate judge, serving as Montgomery’s chief election official. For that work, Reed was selected for the Department of Homeland Security’s Election Integrity Commission. Reed is a recipient of the Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Leadership Award for Governmental Service and is a member of the New Deal Leaders network, the Bloomberg Harvard City Leadership Initiative and the UNUM Fellows cohort. He was selected for the Aspen Institute Socrates Program, serves on the advisory board for the U.S. Conference of Mayors, is active with the African American Mayors Association and the National League of Cities. Reed graduated from Morehouse College and earned an MBA from Vanderbilt University.

Ronald A. Simmons is the Montgomery Area Chamber of Commerce chief officer, destination and community development, working with tourism, economic development and downtown plans. A Montgomery native, he is a graduate of Auburn University at Montgomery and a U.S. Army Reserves veteran. He holds additional credentials from the U.S. Chamber of Commerce Foundation Institute of Organizational Management. Simmons served earlier as president of United Way in Montgomery. Active in the community, he is founder of D.A.D.S. (Dads and Daughters Saturday). He is a member of the Economic Development Partnership of Alabama and a Leadership Montgomery graduate.

Doug Singleton is chairman of the Montgomery County Commission. He has years of business experience ranging from small companies to Coca-Cola. He is chairman of the board of the Central Alabama Consortium and Montgomery American Youth Baseball and Softball, serves on the Committee of 100 Board of Control and Economic Development, is founder and president of Montgomery Miracle League and a volunteer for Upward Basketball and Crowne Nursing Home. He also is an advisory board member of the City of Montgomery Parks and Recreation Department.

Charisse D. Stokes is president of Tidal IT Solutions LLC, an information technology consulting company in Montgomery. A graduate of Clemson University, she has a master’s from Auburn University at Montgomery. She is a U.S. Air Force veteran. She serves on the board of Alabama Power Co. and is active with the Business Council of Alabama, Alabama STEM Advisory Council, Computer Science Task Force and the Armed Forces Communication and Electronics Association International, AUM College of Business, Trenholm State Community College Computer Information Systems and Saint James School Board. She founded EduWerx, to help women and minority students try STEM programs.

Gordon Stone has served as the mayor of the Town of Pike Road for nearly two decades, during which time the young municipality has experienced rapid and exciting growth. He also is executive director of the Higher Education Partnership, the advocacy voice for Alabama’s 14 public universities. Stone is an Auburn University graduate with an MBA from Auburn University at Montgomery. He also serves as a leader in the National Young Farmers Educational Association.

Lt. Gen. Andrea D. Tullos is commander and president of Air University at Maxwell Air Force Base. She entered the Air Force in 1991. She is a career Security Forces officer and has previously served as a staff officer at the combatant command, Joint Staff, Air Staff and major command levels and as the director of security forces, Headquarters U.S. Air Force. She has completed multiple command tours at the squadron, group, wing and numbered Air Force level. Prior to her current assignment, Tullos was deputy commander, Air Education and Training Command, Joint Base San Antonio-Randolph, Texas.

This appears in the January 2023 issue of Business Alabama.

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