COED Staff


Misti Whitfield Martin, President 1995-1998, 2004

Misti Martin is a native of Georgia and has been in the Chamber and Economic Development field since 1991. In February 2004, she was named as the Executive Director of the Development Authority of Cherokee County, now known as the Cherokee Office of Economic Development.

In the 1990’s, Martin worked for the Cherokee County Chamber of Commerce & Development Authority and the Carl Vinson Institute of Government at the University of Georgia. She served as President & CEO of the Newton County Chamber of Commerce in Covington, Georgia from 1998-2004 before returning to her hometown of Canton.

Ms. Martin received a Bachelor of Business Administration degree in Management from the University of Georgia and earned her MBA from Troy State University. She is also a graduate of University of Oklahoma’s Economic Development Institute (EDI) as well as the Institute for Organization Management at the University of Georgia. Misti has held numerous positions on state boards for Chamber and Economic Development organizations.

Misti is married to Jud Martin, and they have three sons.

Heath Tippens, Senior Project Manager 2009

Heath Tippens is a native of Canton, GA and a graduate of the University of Georgia with a BSFCS in Housing.

After graduating, Heath moved back home to Canton, to the area and people that he loves. Tippens’ background includes working as an investor relations specialist at Wells Real Estate Funds. While working at Wells, Heath gained valuable experience in commercial real estate and financial markets. Mr. Tippens is also a co-founder of the Pam Coleman Tippens Memorial Scholarship and served on the scholarship’s board of directors. He is a member of the Georgia Economic Developers Association and currently serves on the Young Professionals Committee. Heath is a graduate of The Basic Economic Developers Course at Georgia Tech, as well as a graduate of the Georgia Academy of Economic Development. He is a 2013 graduate of Leadership Cherokee, and was recognized by his peers as the Cristal Stancil Leadership Award honoree. Tippens was also recently named as one of the “Top 10 in 10” Young Professionals to Watch within Cherokee County.

Heath and his wife Whitney reside in northern Cherokee County with their son. The Tippens’ love the relationships they have with the people in this area and all Cherokee has to offer!

Sara Skeen, Operations Manager 2003-2008, 2012

IMG_3176 retouched cropped sara
Sara Skeen is a native of Georgia. She worked at the Development Authority of Cherokee County from 2003 to 2008 as the Administrative Assistant. She came back to work for the Office of Economic Development in 2012 as the Office Manager. Sara is a graduate of The Basic Economic Developers Course at Georgia Tech.

Sara is married to Marc Skeen and they reside in Woodstock, GA with their son and daughter.


Katie Bishop, Communication Project Manager 2014

Katie Bishop joined the staff of the Office of Economic Development in August of 2014. Katie is a graduate of Kennesaw State University where she received a Bachelor of Science in Communication majoring in Public Relations.

Katie began her career in non-profit fundraising management as Development Manager for the National MS Society in Jacksonville, FL. In 2013, she and her husband relocated to Cherokee County and she fell in love with the community. She currently serves on the Executive Board of the Cherokee Learning Project. Since moving to the area, Katie has immersed herself in everything the County has to offer.

Katie and her husband, Cody Bishop, reside in Canton, GA with their son and three dogs.