GMC News

Interim Principal Named

Georgia Military College names interim principal, vice principal
By Payton Towns III – The Union-Recorder

MILLEDGEVILLE – A day after its principal was named the superintendent in Jones County, Georgia Military College didn\’t look far to find an interim principal and vice president.

Lt. Col. John Thornton was named the interim principal and Major Pam Grant was selected as the interim vice principal Wednesday, said Col. Fred Van Horn, executive vice president. Thornton, former vice principle, is taking the place of Col. Jim LeBrun who will be taking over as Jones County school superintendent in July.

Both Thornton and Grant have a long history of working at GMC.

\”(They) understand how the school operates and they have a good opinion of the faculty and the leadership of the college,\” Van Horn said. \”There is every reason to expect that they won\’t miss a beat. I\’m looking forward to the success Jim LeBrun will realize in Jones County and I\’m looking forward to see some new talent in the principal and assistant principal\’s position and enjoy seeing them do well in those jobs.\”

Van Horn said Major Gen. Peter J. Boylan, president of GMC, and the Board of Trustees will have to decide the next step.

\”It\’s a little bit early to say where they want to go from here,\” Van Horn said. \”John is perfectly qualified to fill in until the Board of Trustees and the president decide how they want to handle filling this position. What happens to both John and Pam will be result of future considerations.\”

Van Horn said it\’s important not to get in a hurry when looking for a new principal.

\”It\’s going to take a year to do a search,\” he said. \”There may very well be some good talent out there right now that\’s not under contract. Common sense says the really good people may be under contract at other schools. Gen. Boylan wants to do a good job with this so he\’s probably going to take a year to do a search and find the right person.

\”We\’ve got good people here now and I think that\’s why it\’s powerful to appoint John Thornton as an assistant principal,\” Van Horn added. \”He\’s been here for quite a while and he\’s an extremely fine assistant principal. He knows the teachers, students and parents. So he\’s not going to miss a beat when he steps forward to become the interim principal.\”

Bill Mathews Jr., who is retiring as the Jones County superintendent at the end of the month, said the board voted 5-0 during a Tuesday meeting to accept LeBrun as its new superintendent. Mathews did not know the length of LeBrun\’s contract.

\”To my knowledge, there are no contract details right now,\” Mathews said. \”They will begin to work those details out now.\”

Van Horn said he was pleased with what LeBrun has done at GMC. LeBrun has been the principal at GMC for the last five years. LeBrun was principal at Boddie Middle School for four years before becoming the principal at GMC. He has been the principal at Frank Scott Correctional Institute and he also has been an assistant principal at Baldwin High School.

\”LeBrun has done a great job here by everyone\’s measure,\” Van Horn said. \”He has been a great principal and I think the fact that\’s he\’s done well here has reflected in the fact that he was selected to be the Jones County superintendent. We\’ll regret seeing him go. He has become a good friend to many of us, but he\’ll do well in Jones County just like he did here.\”

LeBrun, 44, said the search for Jones County\’s new superintendent began in March. The other finalists included Barbara Roquemore and Herman Schuber, LeBrun said.

\”I knew (LeBrun) from different professional settings,\” said Mathews, who has been the school\’s superintendent for the last 121/2 years. \”I knew all three of the candidates. I think the board would have been OK with any of them. They had to select from a good pool of candidates. The board took this very seriously.\”

When asked if he thought the board made a good decision, Mathews said he didn\’t want to get involved in who the board selected.

\”It would be kind of like if my wife was trying to pick a second husband,\” he said. \”I might be interested, but I don\’t want to get involved.\”

Payton Towns III can be reached at (478) 453-1456 or by e-mail at