A vote by the entire board of the Business Council of Alabama on Dec. 7 is expected to confirm Katie Britt as President and CEO of the influential business organization.
BCA’s executive committee in October voted unanimously to recommend Britt as the next chief of the organization, and those close to the process believe her confirmation by the full board is secure.
“There is no doubt that Katie Britt will be overwhelmingly confirmed [to lead BCA],” said an inside source not authorized to speak on the record.
An Enterprise native, Britt currently serves as chief of staff for U.S. Sen. Richard Shelby.
Britt will be the first woman to helm BCA and is seen as a welcome change from recent leadership which embroiled the group in needless fights with the state Legislature.
Insiders speaking on background say that Britt should have an easy time rebuilding relationships with lawmakers but will face challenges reshaping the organization’s image as a group that represents all business interests.
She will also face the task of restoring fiscal responsibilities after outgoing CEO Billy Canary reportedly plundered the group’s resources in a failed attempt to keep his job.
Several individuals close to the process also believe that Britt must carry out a full-scale assessment of personnel and programs.
As one source said, “Canary loyalists will have to go for Katie to be successful. There a lot of baggage associated with many in leadership positions of there.”
It is also believed that the executive committee wants to pull back from some of the group’s programs like Business in Education, an arm of BCA started to compete with the Alabama Education Association.
“BCA has to get back to its core mission,” said a prominent supporter. “BCA needs to concentrate its efforts on promoting business, not frivolous power grabs.”
Britt, if confirmed, is expected to begin work after the first of the year.
Britt is a graduate of the University of Alabama with a Bachelor’s degree in political science and a Doctorate of law. Britt has been a rising star in state politics since her days as an undergrad.
Britt formerly served as Shelby’s press secretary, deputy campaign manager and spokeswoman during his Senate campaign in 2016.
She is married to Wesley Britt, a former offensive lineman for the Crimson Tide and the New England Patriots. The two have proven to be a powerhouse couple in Alabama and D.C.
The couple has two school-age children.