Board Members

Charles B. Rice, Founding Chair

The founder of the Atlanta-based Barton Protective Services in 1977, Charles Rice developed the company into the third largest contract security service firm in the United States.  The company provided customers with protection against fire, burglary, and a host of other services by providing security officers as well as emergency response, intellectual asset protection, concierge, and workplace-violence prevention services to clients in the United States and Europe.  For five consecutive years, Barton Securities – which employed some 13,000 people -- was named by Fortune Magazine as one of the ‘100 Best Companies to Work For’.  In addition Charles was named Ernst and Young Entrepreneur of the Year for the Southeastern Region.

Barton Protective Services was acquired by the Allied Security, the largest security service company in the United States in May 2004.

Charles is a South Georgia Native, growing up in Blakely Georgia where his parents Jean and Kathy Rice settled in the 1930s. Charles and his wife Catherine formed the Charles and Catherine B. Rice Foundation in the mid-2000s.  Because of the strong family history in Blakely and Early County, the Rice Family Foundation generously funded the Early County 2055 Revitalization Plan as the first step in an economic revitalization effort to enable the community to build a comprehensive program to prepare for the future through new economic opportunities.  They also set up the funding mechanisms to ensure long term success for the project.