What seems like a long time ago now, in the Summer of 2005, I walked into a classroom and was quite shocked. Instead of my female advisor standing in front of my State and Local Government class, it was a young guy. He seemed not much older than I was. Standing around the classroom talking to him, I discovered he wasn’t. He had just graduated from Georgia College with his Master of Public Administration. After he graduated, he started teaching at GMC as an adjunct and it was his responsibility to deal with me and 5 of my peers for the entire term.
After that class, “Mr. Hatcher” as I then called him went on to complete his doctorate at Mississippi State University. I went on to Georgia College and ended up working for the same faculty member he had as an graduate assistant. Will and I reconnected a few years later when suddenly an IM conversation with me and my advisor turned into a chat talking about the election. Once the awkwardness of him being my former professor wore off, we became good friends. We have followed quite similar paths and I’m now proud to call him both friend and mentor.
The now Dr. Hatcher was profiled this week as the May/June Member Spotlight for the Southeastern Conference of Public Administration. From the write-up:
Hatcher continues to contribute through yearly publications and lectures. His latest research, “Re-Opening a Slightly Old Debate: Florida’s Creative Class in Kentucky” with Matt Oyer was presented at SECoPA’s 2011 conference in New Orleans and received great reviews…
For Hatcher, his greatest achievement thus far is the pleasure of teaching future public managers the mechanics of public finance each semester. He plans to continue to equip the nation’s future administrators with the proper tools to run a successful government. When asked which aspect of public affairs he could change with the snap of the finger, he said, “I wish the word bureaucrat wasn’t so hated in this nation. If I had god-like powers over public affairs, I would want the American people to have a better appreciation of the role that bureaucrats play in our nation. Basically, I wish all Americans would read Charles Goodsell’s Case for Bureaucracy.”
Currently the Chair of the Board of Adjustment for Richmond, Kentucky, Hatcher continues to remain involved, and his professional memberships include: Pi Alpha Alpha honor society for public administration, American Society for Public Administration, and Pi Sigma Alpha honor society for political science. Also an active member of SECoPA, he currently serves on the Procedures Committee.