Martha Anne McCarty has been named the new Director of Upson Emergency Management Agency, effective January 1, 2013. She is replacing William G. “Billy” Mitcham, who is retiring after 53 years of service. Charlie English, Director of Georgia Emergency Management Agency, made the official announcement Wednesday.
McCarty was born and raised in Upson County, one of six daughters of Lester and Martha Daniel. She graduated from R. E. Lee Institute in 1976, and married her husband, Ken McCarty, that same year. They have one daughter, Renee, who works as a communications specialist in the 911 center for Metro Atlanta Ambulance Service.
She worked at McCarty’s Superette until 1998, when she became the Chapter Executive Director in Upson County for the American Red Cross. She was named Manager of the Year in Georgia for the Red Cross in 1999, and stayed there until 2004, when she started working part-time as an EMT in Upson and Spalding counties. She became a full-time EMT in Upson County in 2006 and is currently an Assistant Shift Supervisor for Upson EMS. She was named EMT of the Year in Georgia in 2004.
McCarty is no stranger to handling disasters. With the Red Cross, she deployed on disaster operations in Vienna when tornados went through that area of south central Georgia in 1998, and also deployed into Hurricane Katrina HQ Operations in Montgomery, Ala. for two weeks after that disaster occurred. She has worked numerous local house fires in Upson, Lamar, Pike and Spalding counties over the years, ensuring that firefighters were rehabbed and families provided shelter, clothing and food immediately after being displaced.
McCarty said she is looking forward to stepping into her new position.
“Mr. Billy Mitcham leaves some big shoes to fill. But, thankfully, he has advised me that he will remain available for me when questions arise. It’s wonderful to have him as a mentor in this new endeavor,” said McCarty.
“I look forward to working with each department head in the Thomaston, Yatesville, and Upson County governments, as well as the day-to-day government leadership and governing bodies of our communities, and local industries in addition to citizens of Upson County.
“There are a number of excellent volunteers in our fire departments and many of them make up the Upson Search and Rescue Unit. I anticipate a continuance of teamwork from all parties involved, as Rescue Chief Yancey Bell has some of the best volunteers to support the EMA Search and Rescue in times of deployment. I am sure that we can achieve excellence in the coming year as has been done in the past. Upson’s Rescue Unit is recognized as one of the best in the state, and undoubtedly is the best equipped volunteer unit statewide.
“I welcome input from citizens about how Emergency Management can be of greater service to our county and communities. And I will be glad to speak to any citizen, senior, community, or religious group on items of interest from the world of Emergency Management.”