JC/AOC staffer, Noelle Lagueux-Alvarez, recently spoke with Chris Walker, the new CFO/Director of Fiscal Services for the Court of Appeals of Georgia. Interview condensed and edited for clarity.
Noelle Lagueux-Alvarez: Good morning, Chris, and congratulations on your new role as the CFO/Director of Fiscal Services for the Court of Appeals of Georgia. Would you please share your professional background with our readers?
Chris Walker: Certainly, I got my undergrad degree in accounting from Georgia State University in 1994 and my CPA in 2000. I started my career in state government in 1994 with the Department of Audits and then moved on to OPB, Office of Planning and Budget. After that, I was the Accounting Director for the GBI for a couple of years. Then, I was the first Finance Director/CFO for the Department of Revenue for approximately five years. From there, I took a position with the Insurance Department and most recently, I was the Director of Strategic Planning for the Department of Corrections, before coming to the Court of Appeals.
NL-A: When did you start at the Court of Appeals?
Chris Walker: I started on December 1, 2020.
NL-A: Why did you seek your new position?
Chris Walker: From my vantage point, working in state government for many years, I’ve always thought that courts serve such a vital and interesting role, and I wanted to be a part of that. And, interestingly enough, when I was with the Department of Audits, I was the auditor for the Court of Appeals and several other judicial branch entities. So, I had some familiarity with the Court of Appeals from back in the early days of my career. I’ve always thought the judicial branch was a great part of state government—the final interpreter, where the rubber meets the road in the government process.
NLA: Well, welcome! I agree with you about the judicial branch. It’s the place to be.
Chris Walker: Thank you. I’m definitely excited and pleased to be here.
NL-A: What do you hope to achieve in your new role?
Chris Walker: I want to be a good steward and to do an exceptional job supporting the Court of Appeals in accomplishing its critical mission. I want to provide outstanding service to ensure that resources are handled wisely. It is my role to provide financial counsel to the Court.
I also want to maintain an environment where we develop and train staff to make sure that our employees are given the opportunity to grow in their positions and beyond. I will also make sure that we continue to maintain a healthy work environment.
NL-A: Is there anything else you’d like to share about your first few months with the Court of Appeals?
Chris Walker: I’m excited to be here. I look forward to working not only with the Court of Appeals, but with everyone in Georgia’s judicial branch. I’m committed to being a good partner to all of my colleagues in the judicial branch. If I can be of service to anyone in the judicial branch, I’d be happy to do so. I look forward to getting to know everyone.
NL-A: Switching gears, what do you enjoy doing in your free time?
Chris Walker: Well, I grew up showing Appaloosa horses on the national level, and we still have a couple of horses back home on family land. I enjoy snow skiing, when I can get away. I have two daughters and I love spending time with them, especially snow skiing with them. They’re the highlight of my life. I also love the outdoors—hunting, fishing, boating. I especially love trout fishing, so you’ll often find me in a stream in North Georgia or on my old 1960 wooden boat.