Pardoned offender works for courts in Rockdale County

March 5, 2019

Former offender speaks to Parole Board that granted pardon

ATLANTA – Today Suzanne Kilgore thanked the State Board of Pardons and Paroles for an opportunity that she’s been given to help her be successful in life.

Kilgore spoke to the five parole board members at their monthly meeting in Atlanta. Kilgore detailed her life of substance abuse, arrests that followed, and her eventual recovery.

“God’s plan for me was to use my story and my ‘lived-experience’ as a vessel to help others who suffer from addiction that they too can find recovery, have a life that is second to none, gain successful careers, even as convicted felons,” Kilgore stated.

Kilgore was convicted in 1987 in DeKalb County on drug related charges and given five years to serve on probation. She received another drug related conviction in Walton County and was sentenced to five years on probation in 2003. She received a pardon from the State Board of Pardons and Paroles for those convictions in November of 2017.

Kilgore is now a case manager with the Rockdale County Accountability Courts working for Superior Court Judge Robert Mumford and State Court Judge Nancy Bills. She has graduated college receiving a bachelor’s degree in psychology and she’s a certified addiction recovery empowerment specialist assisting others suffering from addiction.

“That’s what a pardon does; helps to restore that former offender and assist in the continuation of that person’s success as a contributing member of society,” stated Parole Board Chairman Terry Barnard.

Pardons may be granted by the Parole Board if the offender has met all requirements including a minimum of five years of no criminal involvement after all felony sentences have been completed including parole or probation sentences. Any fines and restitution also must be paid in full. Investigations are completed on the cases by parole investigators before the Board votes. To learn more about the pardon process visit https://pap.georgia.gov/pardons-restoration-rights.

Parole Board Members are constitutional officers of the state with the responsibility of deciding which parole eligible inmates will be released on parole after serving an appropriate portion of their prison sentence. The Parole Board is authorized to grant paroles, pardons, commutations and reprieves and is the only entity in the state with the constitutional authority to commute a death sentence. 

Watch the March Parole Board Meeting on YouTube https://youtu.be/9nX5HOh_B5k.

For more information please contact Steve Hayes, Communications Director, at 404-657-9450 or steve.hayes@pap.ga.gov and visit our website at www.pap.georgia.gov.

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