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February 10, 2012

Poston tapped as new DA for district

Blevins eager to start as new judge

Chief Assistant District Attorney Bert Poston was announced as the new DA for the Conasauga Judicial Circuit (Whitfield and Murray counties) on Thursday after interviewing with Gov. Nathan Deal on Wednesday, according to a governor’s office release.

Poston, who has been the acting district attorney since former DA Kermit McManus stepped down at the end of January, will finish McManus’ unexpired term until the end of this year. But he said he will qualify to run for the DA’s office during the general election in November, provided he makes it through the Republican primary in July.

Dalton attorney David Blevins was also officially announced on Thursday as the new judge in the district to replace Judge Robert Adams, who retired at the end of January. Blevins will fill Adams’ unexpired term until the end of the year, but will not face an election until 2014 because of a provision in the state Constitution.

Poston, a 1985 graduate of Dalton High School who earned both his bachelor’s and law degrees from the University of Georgia, said will have been with the DA’s office for 20 years in September. He began as an intern in 1990, he said, and became chief assistant in 1996.

Poston was asked if he was going to implement any changes to the DA’s office.

“Mostly I’m going to continue what Kermit had done and started and what (former DA and now Superior Court judge) Jack Partain had done before him,” he replied. “One big area that we’re looking at is our GreenHouse (center for children affected by abuse) and moving forward with plans for building a new and larger GreenHouse. That’s something I’d like to accomplish during my first term. There are some other things, but mainly it’s going to be building on what’s been done before. Kermit was a great DA and I want to preserve his legacy, and with his help from me as assistant DA we’ve built a really good office here and I just want to keep that going.”

Poston said he has not made a decision yet about who will become his chief assistant DA.

He is a board member of Family Promise of Whitfield County and The GreenHouse, a member of the Kiwanis Club of Dalton and an assistant den leader of Cub Scout Pack 65 of the Boy Scouts. Poston and his wife, Charlotte, have four children and reside in Dalton.

Blevins said he was “very pleased” about his selection as the new fourth judge in the circuit.

“But I’m also glad to have the process over,” he added. “It’s a steep challenge that I’m looking forward to, that’s the best way to say it.”

Blevins said a swearing-in for he and Poston should come soon.

“The governor told me the executive council would call me to arrange for the swearing in — and I take that as a ‘Don’t call us, we’ll call you’ — so I really don’t know (when),” he said.

“I’ve had a lot of folks call (Thursday) who were gracious and kind, including those who were also (in the running) for judge, and that’s one of the things here — there were four other very good lawyers who were nominated — and I’m very grateful I was selected out of the field,” he said.

Blevins said it would be “wonderful” if he had around four weeks to “wind up” his practice, but he doesn’t suspect he will have that much time.

Blevins earned his bachelor’s degree from Carson-Newman College in Jefferson, Tenn., and law degree from the University of Georgia. He is a board member of the Whitfield Healthcare Foundation, and he and his wife, Whitfield County Probate Judge Sheri Blevins, have three daughters. They reside in Cohutta.

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