Atlanta, GA – Braxton T. Cotton is the newest member of the State Board of Pardons and Paroles joining the Board on November 15th. Governor Nathan Deal made the appointment announcement on November 1, 2013.

Mr. Cotton says he’s humbled and very appreciative of this opportunity to serve.

“The Board’s work is ultimately about public safety and reentry,” said Cotton. “I look forward to working in that capacity and to further the Governor’s criminal justice reform agenda. I’ve been aware of the Parole Board and the men and women who work here and have made the agency an extremely respected paroling authority across the country. I am proud to be a member of this organization,” he added.

Braxton Cotton is the former director of the Governor’s Office of Transition, Support and Reentry, appointed in June 2013. Prior to that, he was the executive director of the Criminal Justice Coordinating Council. Mr. Cotton served in the Georgia State Patrol for five years. He also worked as a deputy sheriff and as a detective in the Baldwin County Sheriff’s Department where he won the 2004 Officer of the Year Award. During his time in the U.S. Army, he was awarded the Army Achievement Medal. Mr. Cotton has a bachelor’s degree in Criminal Justice from Saint Leo University (Fort McPherson) and is currently studying to obtain his master’s in Public Policy.

The Parole Board has five voting members who are full time employees. In fiscal year 2013, the Board made more than 88,000 decisions regarding offender cases. The Georgia Constitution provides that Parole Board Members are to be appointed by the Governor to serve seven-year staggered terms, subject to confirmation by the State Senate. The Parole Board is authorized to grant paroles, pardons and reprieves and is the only entity in the state with the constitutional authority to commute a death sentence.

For more information on the Parole Board please visit our website at