March 2, 2013

Three joining JA Business Hall of Fame


David Pennington

It seems fitting that a person who had his first job at age 15 with the Dalton Public Works Department would later become the city’s mayor.

David Pennington was born in Vincennes, Ind., in 1952 but has made Dalton his home for much of his life. He is a graduate of Dalton High School, Dalton Junior College and the University of Georgia. Pennington has spent most of his professional career in the insurance industry. He began with Metropolitan Life as a sales representative in 1978 and has worked for several insurance companies.

Since 2009, he has been managing director of Advanced Insurance Strategies. He is a third generation — and the third David Pennington — to be an independent insurance agent in Dalton. His grandfather began his career as an insurance agent in 1937.

In 2007, voters elected Pennington mayor of Dalton. He was re-elected for a second term in 2011. As mayor, Pennington has worked to lower the city’s tax rate, bring in new business and make Dalton more attractive to young professionals.

Accolades include Dalton-Whitfield Chamber of Commerce Business Leader of the Year (1995), Dalton Rotary Club W. Lee Arrendale Vocational Excellence Award (2011) and the Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Humanitarian Award (2012).

He has served as past director of Hardwick Bank and Trust; past director of Hamilton Medical Center; current and founding board member of the Northwest Georgia Healthcare Partnership; past director and chairman of the Dalton-Whitfield Chamber of Commerce; past director and president of the Dalton Education Foundation; trustee of the Dalton State College Foundation; past director and president for Habitat for Humanity; and director of GEEARS, a statewide board for promoting early childhood education.

He and his wife Pam have two grown children.

Joe Yarbrough

Talk about learning a strong work ethic early on in life.

Joe Yarbrough began washing dishes at the Alatoona Landing at the young age of 12.

He later graduated from Auburn University in 1970 with a degree in mechanical engineering. After graduation, he began a career with Harmon-White Engineering in Opelika, Ala.

Beginning in 1972, Yarbrough spent six years in various positions with Coronet Industries. He joined Aladdin Mills in June 1978 as director of manufacturing. Aladdin Mills merged with Calhoun-based Mohawk Industries in February 1994 and in early 1995 Yarbrough was named vice president of manufacturing. In March 2004, he became executive vice president of operations. He currently serves as senior vice president of advanced manufacturing engineering.

These roles provided Yarbrough an opportunity to lead the integration of new technologies for the business and to be active in the assimilation of numerous mergers and acquisitions.

Yarbrough has been active in the community. He serves on the Board of Commissioners of the Water, Light and Sinking Fund Commission (Dalton Utilities’ governing board); board of directors of RossWoods Adult Day Services, where he also is the chairman of the building campaign steering committee; board of directors of the Greater Dalton Chamber of Commerce, where he is immediate past board chairman; board of directors of Georgia Northwestern Technical College; board of directors of the Technical College System of Georgia (appointed by Gov. Nathan Deal); board of directors of the Northwest Georgia Healthcare Partnership, where he is also an executive board member; Christian Heritage School endowment foundation board; board of directors of the United Way of Northwest Georgia; chairman of the Carpet and Rug Institute (CRI) Strategic Issues Leadership Council (SILC); board of directors of Carpet America Recovery Effort (CARE); and Mohawk campaign chair for the United Way of Northwest Georgia (2012-2013).

He and his wife Nanette have five grown children and eight grandchildren.

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