Our law is unique in that it requires that our three-member Commission include a victim of violent crime who has suffered serious personal injury or is a member of such victim's immediate family or member of a deceased victim's immediate family if the deceased victim died as a result of the violent crime. This provision insures that each claim is viewed through the eye of a victim and is seen as objectively as possible.
The law also provides that one member be a law enforcement officer with a minimum of 10 years experience in or with a law enforcement agency which has among its primary duties and responsibilities the investigation of violent crimes. Again, a certain perspective lends itself to the decision making process.
Phillip Brown was appointed to the Commission by Governor Robert Bentley
in December 2012. He was born in Detroit Michigan, and was raised in Elba,
Alabama. He is a graduate of Faulkner University in Montgomery, Alabama
where he holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Ministry and Biblical Studies. He is
currently pursuing a Master’s Degree in Education Administration. Phillip
Brown is the state chairman for the Alabama Minority Republican Party and is
a steering committee member for the Alabama Republican Party. He is the
minister for Forestdale Church of Christ in Birmingham, Alabama. His work
carries him beyond the pulpit into the classroom of everyday life. He works
as a teacher for the Jefferson County Board of Education and feels that his
calling is to help shape the hearts and minds of young people who face a
world for which they are not fully prepared. He is married to the former
Diane Jones of Birmingham, Alabama. They currently reside in the Birmingham
area with their youngest daughter. They have five older daughters and often
enjoy the company of their four grandchildren.
G. (Billy) Sharp, Jr.
(Billy) Sharp, Jr. was appointed to the Commission by Governor Robert
Bentley in December 2014. He is a veteran of the Korean War, and served
three years active duty in the U.S. Army. He also served for over 20 years
as a member of the Alabama National Guard. Commissioner Sharp is a graduate
of the University of Alabama where he received a Bachelor’s Degree in
Education. Mr. Sharp has over 40 years of dedicated service in the field of
Law Enforcement. He attended the University of Alabama Law Enforcement
Academy, and holds the distinction of being the oldest person to attend and
graduate from the FBI National Academy at the age of 66. He was a Deputy
Warden at Donaldson Prison for 3 years, and worked for over 35 years as an
investigator at the Alabama Criminal Justice Information Center. In
addition, he shared his vast knowledge and experience with others as an
adjunct instructor at A.P.O.S.T Police Academy for 37 years in Tuscaloosa,
Alabama. He continues his work with A.P.O.S.T by currently serving as one
of the agency’s Commissioners. In 2013, Governor Bentley appointed him
Sheriff of Tuscaloosa County, Alabama. He and his wife Jacqueline have been
married since 1955. They have three children and six grandchildren. He is a
Life Deacon at First Baptist Church in Tuscaloosa, Alabama, where he has
been a member since 1945.
Miriam Shehane was appointed to the original Commission in 1984 for a four-year term by Governor George Wallace and was re-appointed by Governor Guy Hunt in 1988. She served until 1992 and was re-appointed in July 1993 by Governor Jim Folsom, July 1998 by Governor Fob James and July 2001 by Gov. Siegelman. She is a former banker and has worked as the Victim Service Officer in the District Attorney's Office in Montgomery and as the Supervisor of the Attorney General's Office of Victim Assistance. Mrs. Shehane's dedication to the victims' movement in Alabama has been acknowledged throughout the nation where she has been asked to speak at national conferences on victims' issues. Mrs. Shehane was one of the founding members of VOCAL, Victims of Crime and Leniency, and has served on the Board since its inception in 1982. She found out about trauma of victimization first hand when her 21 year old daughter Quenette, was murdered in 1976 while enrolled at Birmingham Southern.
Mrs. Shehane's son, Jon, passed in January 2012. Miriam and her husband, Edward, have
one child and seven grandchildren and reside in Clio, Alabama.