Rob Gordon, who now heads the UGA Archway Partnership, will become director of the Carl Vinson Institute of Government, effective Jan. 1, 2021.

Gordon succeeds Laura Meadows, who is retiring after more than 30 years in state government, 11 of those at the UGA Institute of Government, almost 10 as director.

“We are very fortunate in Public Service and Outreach to have an abundance of strong leaders, whose priority is making the state more prosperous for all Georgians,” said Jennifer L. Frum, vice president for UGA Public Service and Outreach. “Laura is one of the finest, most dedicated public servants Georgia has ever seen. She has improved the state and UGA in measurable ways and she leaves the Vinson Institute well-positioned for the future. Rob’s previous experience at the Vinson Institute, his years of leading the Archway Partnership and his governmental service have prepared him for this new position. I am confident he will continue to elevate the institute’s service to governments of all levels in Georgia.”

Michelle Elliott, an operations coordinator with the Archway Partnership, will serve as interim director. A search for a permanent director will be launched after the first of the year.

Both the Archway Partnership and the Carl Vinson Institute of Government are UGA Public Service and Outreach units.

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Gordon, a native of Jesup, Georgia, joined Archway as director in 2015. There, he is responsible for the unit’s overall strategic direction and programs that address a wide-range of locally-identified community priorities intended to strengthen economic development.

Since 2015, the Archway Partnership has completed more than 600 community projects addressing a diverse array of community needs. Through its work, Archway has funded more than 80 graduate assistantships, provided over 500 students with experiential learning opportunities and supported over 300 faculty partnerships, representing all UGA colleges, schools and Public Service and Outreach units. Gordon also increased external funding dollars and other external support to the unit and to the Archway communities.

From 2010 to 2014, Gordon worked for the Institute of Government as manager of its economic development and fiscal analysis unit, overseeing the Applied Demography Program, Tax and Expenditure Data Center, and Fiscal Analysis Program. Gordon served as a special agent in the U.S. Department of State’s Diplomatic Security Service from 1999-2002 in San Francisco, Washington, D.C., and Albania. He received a Superior Honor Award from Secretary of State Madeleine K. Albright and a Meritorious Honor Award from Secretary of State Colin L. Powell for crisis management and performance in the line of duty. Prior to first joining the Institute of Government in 2010, Gordon practiced public finance law at Troutman Sanders in Richmond and King & Spalding in Atlanta.

Gordon holds a Bachelor of Business Administration from the University of Georgia and a Juris Doctor from the George Washington University School of Law in Washington, D.C.


Kelly Simmons Public Service and Outreach Communications Director • 706-296-0855


Rob Gordon Archway Partnership Director • 706-542-3268