Coastal Directory



Keisha Alberty


Ross Andrews

Client Support Specialist

Shane Apps

Shane Apps

Senior Recruiter

Dr. Scott Argo

Assistant Vice President for Recruitment and Admissions

Cynthia Atwood

Senior Lecturer of Criminal Justice

Ms. Atwood has served as a full-time faculty member researching, developing, and teaching courses in Criminal Justice since 2014.

Prior to joining the faculty at the College of Coastal Georgia, Ms. Atwood completed a distinguished 30-year career retiring as an Assistant Director (AD) with the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, Federal Law Enforcement Training Centers (FLETC).As a career member of the Senior Executive Service, Ms. Atwood provided executive leadership and oversight for both training and administrative functions at the FLETC, including all training and training support functions across the FLETC’s four domestic locations in Glynco, GA; Charleston, SC; Artesia, NM; and Cheltenham, MD; training delivered at the International Law Enforcement Academies (ILEAs) around the world; and state, local, tribal, and territorial training delivered across the United States. Ms. Atwood led training across the spectrum of law enforcement training areas including: Behavioral Science, Counter-Terrorism, Leadership, Legal, Firearms, Drivers, Maritime, Investigative Operations, Enforcement Techniques, Physical Techniques, Financial Fraud, and Instructional Development. She also led efforts to ensure coordination with federal, state, and local law enforcement entities to develop and deliver programs to effectively prepare law enforcement officers and agents in areas such as Active Shooter and Cyber training programs across the United States.

While serving as the FLETC’s Chief Administrative Officer (CAO), Ms. Atwood provided executive leadership and oversight for multiple complex areas including: human resources (including employee and labor relations), facilities management (including design and construction), procurement, property management, and the Critical Incident Stress Management program.

Ms. Atwood’s law enforcement and teaching experience span 31 years and include serving as a Special Agent in the Office of the Inspector General, U.S. Department of Agriculture; and Senior Special Agent, Office of the Inspector General, U.S. General Services Administration.She conducted investigations resulting in the successful prosecution of criminal and civil matters across the eight southeastern states and the District of Columbia, including program fraud, bribery of government officials, food stamp trafficking and serious allegations of employee misconduct.

Ms. Atwood graduated with a Bachelor of Science in Police Administration from Eastern Kentucky University’s College of Law Enforcement, and earned her Master of Science in Criminal Justice from Georgia State University’s College of Public and Urban Affairs. Additionally, she is a graduate of the Federal Executive Institute in Charlottesville, VA and the Center for Creative Leadership in Greensboro, NC.

James Atwood

Judge Atwood

Assistant Professor of Criminal Justice
Asst. Professor J. Alexander Atwood

On January 1st, 2022, Alex Atwood joined the faculty of the School of Business and Public Management, College of Coastal Georgia. Prior to assuming this position, Professor Atwood served as Commissioner of the Georgia Department of Administrative Services, overseeing all State-Wide Contracting, Risk Management, Fleet Management, Human Resources Administration and Surplus Property for the State of Georgia. In this position, Professor Atwood also served on numerous state boards and authorities and represented the State of Georgia as a member of the National Association of State Chief Administrators.

Professor Atwood holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Criminal Justice from Georgia State University, a Master of Arts in International Relations from Webster College, a Juris Doctor (J.D.) in Law (Cum Laude) from Atlanta’s John Marshall School of Law and a Master of Law (LL.M.) from Georgia State University’s School of Law. Professor Atwood is a member of the legal honor fraternity Sigma Delta Kappa, was a recipient of the Corpus Juris Secumdum Award for academic excellence, is a member of the Golden Key International Honor Society, and is a Fellow of the Lawyers Foundation of Georgia. Professor Atwood is also a graduate of the Federal Executive Institute, Charlottesville, Virginia.

Professor Atwood has served as a member of the United States Attorneys Committee for Project Safe Neighborhood, an Adjunct Instructor at the International Law Enforcement Academy in Budapest, Hungary, a member of the Legal Advisors Section to the International Association of Chiefs of Police, a legal advisor to the Georgia Sheriff’s Association, and as a member of the Executive Committee of the Georgia Council of Magistrate Court Judges.

Prior to his appointment as Commissioner, Professor Atwood enjoyed many operational and command roles including service as the Chief of Legal Training for the Department of Homeland Security, Federal Law Enforcement Training Center, Special Agent and Supervisory Special Agent for several federal executive branch agencies, Chief Operating Officer of Alpha Protective Services, Inc., a 700-member security corporation which provided security services for the federal government and the National Football League, as the Chief Judge of the Magistrate Court of Glynn County, and as the founding partner of Atwood Choate, PC. Professor Atwood also served for 34 years in the United States Marine Corps Reserve in ground, aviation and Intelligence positions, entering service as a Private and retiring at the rank of full Colonel.

Professor Atwood also served as a State Representative in the Georgia House of Representatives where among many committee assignments he served as Appropriations Committee Chairman for Public Safety, Vice-Chair of the Juvenile Justice Committee, and Secretary of the Public Safety and Homeland Security Committee. Representative Atwood also served as Majority Caucus Deputy Whip and as a member of the Jekyll Island Legislative Oversight Committee.

Amanda Austin

Amanda Austin

Career and Academic Advisor

Dr. Syvillia Averett

Interim Dean, School of Arts and Sciences, Associate Professor of Mathematics

Dr. Averett earned her Ph.D. on Mathematics from the University of Iowa. Her interests include Representation Theory, Mathematics Education, Mentorship, and Student Development.

Tyler Bagwell

Professor of Communication

Linell Bailey

Career and Academic Advisor/Dual Enrollment Advisor

Justin Bargeron

Police Officer

Ashley Barnes

Assistant Professor of Nursing

Barnes earned her Master of Science in Nursing from Georgia Southwestern State University, her Bachelor of Science in Nursing from Georgia Southern University, and her Associate of Science in Nursing from the College of Coastal Georgia. She is a Certified Nurse Educator. Prior to joining the Coastal Georgia faculty, Mrs. Barnes worked for three years in CCU.

Jennifer Beirdneau

Jennifer Beirdneau

Lecturer and Clinical Coordinator of Radiologic Science

Dr. Kathleen Bennett

Associate Professor of Education and Teacher Preparation (Reading and Special Education Specialization)

Kristy Bennett

Senior Human Resources Manager

Dr. James Benton

James Benton

Professor of Accounting

Dr. James “Jim” E. Benton is currently an Associate Professor of Accounting at the College of Coastal Georgia. His academic credentials include a Ph.D. in Finance and Masters of Art in Economics from Old Dominion University, a Juris Doctor, Masters of Taxation and Masters of Science in Personal Financial Planning from Georgia State University, as well as a Bachelor of Science in Accounting and Finance from Northern Illinois University. His professional credentials include active Bar member in the state of Georgia, CPA/PFS, and CFP. Jim has worked in various law and accounting practices as well as operating his own financial planning/tax planning practices. He has taught various personal financial planning courses at a number of certified financial planning programs including Georgia State University, Western Carolina University, Duke University, Old Dominion University, and Shippensburg University. He is also the founder of The Financial Literacy Academy, LLC, a corporate training company specializing in financial literacy training and is a 28-year US Army combat veteran who retired from the US Army/Army Reserves as a LTC in the Judge Advocate General Corp.

Jamie Berrie

Lecturer of Mathematics

Jamie received her M.S. in Applied Mathematics from Western Carolina University.

Jamie Bessette

Jamie Bessette

Vice President for Advancement

Penny Bethune

Buyer and Central Store Supervisor

Dr. Robert Bleil

Bleil, Robert

Chair, Department of Arts & Humanities and Professor of English