The White House announced today that Ashley Bell, the former Hall County commissioner and Republican National Committee operative, will serve as the new associate director for external affairs for the U.S. Peace Corps.
Bell will be in charge of agency communications, relations with Congress and intergovernmental affairs. From the press release:
“Peace Corps volunteers represent the best the United States has to offer and I am grateful for the opportunity to support an agency founded in the American ideal of serving others,” Bell said.
A lawyer, Bell was a county commissioner (and had been delegate to the 2000 Democratic National Convention) when he switched to the Republican party in 2010. He was then defeated in the subsequent GOP primary. Bell fell short in a 2014 bid for state school superintendent, but rebounded with an RNC assignment during the 2016 presidential contest.
Until his Peace Corps appointment, Bell had been an aide to Secretary of State Rex Tillerson.
Bell wouldn’t be the first Georgian in the upper ranks of the Peace Corps. Before he was elected to the U.S. Senate, Paul Coverdell served as director from 1989 to 1991 during the George H.W. Bush administration.
U.S. Sen. Johnny Isakson, R-Ga., has been a top advocate for the agency as well.