Two Hall County leaders will now serve the county in a new or expanded capacity.

Van Stephens, who has served as the county attorney with Gainesville-based law firm Stewart, Melvin & Frost since September 2019, will now serve in that same capacity in-house.

“Van brings over 35 years of experience to Hall County, and his expertise has already proven invaluable to our organization,” County Administrator Jock Connell said. “Bringing the County Attorney position in-house is a natural move as this County continues to grow and develop, and it will surely benefit both staff and the public as our need for access to that type of legal advisement continues to grow along with our County.”

Stewart, Melvin & Frost will continue as external county attorney pending Board of Commissioner approval.

Stephens’ first day as Hall County’s in-house counsel is Jan. 18.

Meanwhile, Casey Ramsey, who currently serves as Hall County’s Emergency Management Agency Director, will now oversee Hall County’s Central Communications Division, also known as E-911, which has most recently reported under the Management Information Systems (MIS) Department.

“Casey has been extremely instrumental in Hall County’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic, severe weather preparation and a number of other high-level issues, including the response to the recent cyberattack,” Connell said. “We are looking forward to his leadership in this expanded role.”

Hall County’s Emergency Management Agency division previously fell under the Fire Services umbrella with its director reporting directly to the fire chief. In addition to overseeing E-911, this organizational change will also shift that position into a direct report under the County Administrator’s Office.

Ramsey’s first day in this expanded role will be Jan. 18.

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