Camden County Joint Development Authority Staff
James grew up along Florida’s Gulf Coast and immediately felt at home when he arrived here in beautiful coastal Georgia. He attended The University of Florida for his undergraduate work and later The University of Georgia, where he also served as a Graduate Assistant Athletic Trainer.
James comes to Camden from Rome, Georgia, where he served as the Director of Professional Recruitment and Retention for Floyd Medical Center. In this role James traveled the Southeast region, recruiting physicians to the northwest Georgia area. James was a 2011 graduate of Leadership Rome and in 2013 he was the Governor’s Appointee to the Northwest Georgia Regional Commission.
James lives in Kingsland with his wife, Diane, and daughter, Autumn. He believes that above all else, people are the greatest asset this community has to offer.
Darren Harper is the Project Manager for the Camden County Joint Development Authority (Authority). He began his current duties in August of 2014 in an effort to streamline and enhance economic development efforts throughout Camden County. Prior to joining the Authority, Darren was the Director of the City of Kingsland Economic Development Department and Secretary/Director of the Kingsland Development Authority.
Darren supports the Executive Director of the Authority in business and industry attraction, retention and expansion efforts throughout Camden County. He also assists in identifying and securing funds to support community economic development efforts. As Director of economic development for the City of Kingsland, Darren, with the support of other city departments, secured over $1.3 million dollars in grant funds to support an array of local projects including downtown streetscape, historic building renovation, signage and energy efficiency projects.
Darren has experience and background in architecture, historic preservation, downtown development, economic development and project funding and management. He graduated from the Savannah College of Art and Design with a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Historic Preservation in 1993.
In May 2006, Darren received a Preservation Achievement Award from the Georgia Department of Natural Resources-Historic Preservation Division for outstanding contributions to historic preservation in Georgia. In 2007, he received a Certificate of Management from the University of Georgia. He also received certification as an Economic Development Finance Professional through the National Development Council in 2009.
In 2012, Darren aided the Kingsland Development Authority in the relocation and expansion of Summer Industries from Northeast Florida to Kingsland, Georgia. Summer Industries, recenty acquired by Caraustar, Inc., continues to manufactur spiral paper core tubing at the Kingsland/Woodbine plant. Darren is a member of the Georgia Economic Developers Association, the Southern Economic Development Council, and the Georgia Advisory Group of the Council of Development Finance Agencies.
Teira A. Cole, Office Manager