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This Day in Georgia History

March 11, 1948

Roy Barnes Born

Former Gov. Roy Barnes was born in Atlanta. Graduating from South Cobb High School in 1966, Barnes graduated from the University of Georgia with a bachelor’s degree in history (1969) and a law degree (1972). He then worked as a prosecutor in the Cobb County district attorney’s office. In 1975, Barnes was elected to the Georgia Senate, where he served sixteen years. In 1993, he was elected to the Georgia House, where he served six years. In November 1998, Barnes was elected governor of Georgia. During his term, he is probably best remembered for his role in getting the General Assembly to replace the 1956 state flag with a new flag in 2001. He sought a second term but was defeated in 2002 by Republican Sonny Perdue, who served two terms but was constitutionally prohibited from running for a third term. As a result, Barnes decided to seek the Democratic nomination for governor in the 2010 primary. He did win the Democratic nomination, but lost in the general election to Republican Nathan Deal.