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Wilheit named chair of USG Board of Regents

Philip Wilheit Sr., pictured above speaking at the University of North Georgia in 2012, has been elected chairman of the Board of Regents of the University System of Georgia.

ATLANTA — The Board of Regents, the 19-member governing body for the University System of Georgia, on Nov. 13 elected Regent Philip A. Wilheit Sr. to a one-year term as the board's chairman. Wilheit, who represents the state’s 9th District, which includes the area covered by the University of North Georgia, currently serves as vice-chair.

"We have a fine group of people leading the university system during this time of change," Wilheit said. "I am grateful to my colleagues on the board for this opportunity."

Wilheit is the president of Wilheit Packaging and Marketing Images in Gainesville, Ga. He received a bachelor's degree in English from the University of the South, "Sewanee," in 1966.

On Nov. 6, Philip A. Wilheit Sr. was honored as a Featherbone Entrepreneur of the Year for 2013. Wilheit was nominated for the award by the University of North Georgia (UNG) and the Mike Cottrell College of Business. Wilheit was among nine people recognized during the fourth annual "Entrepreneurs: Masters of Innovation," event held at the Featherbone Communiversity in Gainesville, Ga., sponsored by BB&T.

Wilheit has most recently served on the Georgia Department of Economic Development Commission Board of Directors and the Commission for a New Georgia. He was a member of Georgia Chamber Transportation Commission and the Georgia Chamber Advisory Committee on School Board Governance.

In addition to his service on the State Board of Education from 1996-1999, Wilheit served for more than 40 years on the board of the Greater Hall County Chamber of Commerce, with one year as chairman and more than 20 years on the Georgia Chamber of Commerce, serving as its chair for one year. He also served as chairman of Leadership Georgia in 1990.

Wilheit chaired Gov. Nathan Deal's campaign for governor and served as treasurer for his campaigns for 28 years. He also served on former Gov. Sonny Perdue's Economic Development Commission and water task force.

During 2012, Wilheit served as the Board's chair of the finance and business operations committee and chair of its Shared Services Center.

He and his wife, Mary Hart, have two adult children and three grandchildren.

Regent Larry Walker chaired the committee that developed nominations for board officers for the coming year. Committee members were Regents Ben Tarbutton and T. Rogers Wade.

The board also elected Regent Neil L. Pruitt Jr. for a one-year term as vice chair.

The University System of Georgia is comprised of 31 public colleges and universities, Georgia Archives and the Georgia Public Library Service; enrolling more than 314,000 students.

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