Dr. James William “Jim” Mullins, 87, of Athens, GA passed peacefully on May 7th, 2023.
He was born in Atlanta and raised in Jacksonville, FL. He attended Jacksonville University and graduated from Carson-Newman College. His service in the army was spent in Germany after the Occupation in the 101st Airborne Division where he translated Morse Code. He earned his Masters and Doctorate in Education from the University of Georgia. Spanning the next 50 years was a professional career dedicated to public education, serving as a teacher, coach, principal, superintendent, advisor to the Georgia General Assembly, Director of Governmental Relations, and legislative liaison to Dekalb Schools. For almost two decades therein, he led the Office of House Research, formerly the Legislative Educational Research Council. He was instrumental in drafting the Quality Basic Education Act of 1985 that provided the foundation of public education in the state of Georgia, even to this day. Other notable legislation in which he was involved included the lottery-funded Hope Scholarship and the Georgia Pre-K programs. In honor of his contributions, the General Assembly proclaimed March 31st, 2008, as “Dr. Jim Mullins Day” in the state of Georgia.
He was also a die-hard, full-time fan of the Georgia bulldogs. He loved the tailgating, friends, pork rinds, Cheez-its, beer, big laughter, and a big time to be had by all. His family brought him great pride and joy and he always showed great support and positivity in any of their endeavors. Strolling a beach at sunset, admiring a beautiful yard or garden, reading a good book, sipping on a Jack and water, pontificating among friends, and attempting good golf at the Codfish tournaments were just a few of his favorite things. The experience of knowing Jim and being loved by him will be unmatched and sorely missed.
He is survived by his wife of 40 years, Dr. Vivian McMillan; daughter Lisa Peters, grandson Jordan (Julia) Peters; daughter Margaret Ann (Alan) Cole, granddaughters Ramsey and Cate Cole; Son Eric (Kimberly) McMillan, grandson Kole and granddaughter Kloe McMillan; and granddaughter Samantha Black and great-granddaughter Rayne Mobley. He is predeceased by his parents James Raymond and Cecilia Marie Mullins, brother Fred Mullins, and sister Betty Lockee.
In remembrance of Jim, the family asks that any donations to be made to the University of Georgia’s Office of Gift Accounting Development and Alumni Relations – Athens, Ga 30602; or to St. Jude’s Children’s Research Hospital at 501 St. Jude Place – Memphis TN, 38105 (stjude.org).
Family will receive friends Friday May 12,2023 at 12:00pm followed by the funeral at 1:00pm in McDonald and Son chapel.
Internment will be Tuesday May 16, 2023 at 1:00pm at Georgia National Cemetery.
Condolences may be expressed at www.mcdonaldandson.com.
Arrangements by McDonald and Son Funeral Home, 150 Sawnee Drive, Cumming, GA 30040 (770) 886.9899
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