Dr. James Sutton was born and raised in Griffin, Georgia. He is a graduate of both Griffin High School and Gordon College. He received his Bachelor of Science and Master of Science Degrees in Agronomy from the University of Georgia in 1982 and 1984 respectively. In 1988, he earned his Doctor of Philosophy in Agronomy from Auburn University.
While in High School, Dr. Sutton began his agricultural career as a part-time employee at the University of Georgia – Griffin Experiment Station and continued there while working his way through college. On completion of college, Dr. Sutton worked in the private seed industry as a plant breeder developing new varieties of peanut, soybean, cotton and canola.
In September of 2000, Dr. Sutton joined the Georgia Department of Agriculture as a Manager for the Georgia Seed Development Commission. He was made Director of the Commission in 2001. Dr. Sutton was appointed to his present position as Division Director over Plant Industry in August 2004.
Dr. Sutton has served on several boards, committees and commissions throughout his career and has published as well as reviewed articles for scientific journals and other publications.
Dr. Sutton and his wife Karen are the proud parents of a daughter, Katie and a son, Drew. The Suttons are members of Griffin First Baptist Church where Dr. Sutton serves as Deacon and Sunday school teacher. He enjoys family time and is an avid Atlanta Thrashers fan.