Southern Company elects Purcell as new board member

Southern Company’s board of directors has elected J. Neal Purcell to the board. Purcell retired last year as vice chairman of KPMG’s national audit practice operations.

“Neal’s professional expertise, his knowledge of the communities we serve and his personal involvement in those communities are impressive,” said Southern Company Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Allen Franklin. “We are pleased and proud to add Neal Purcell to our board roster.” Purcell’s term on the 10-member board begins Feb. 17. In addition, he was named to the audit committee.

Purcell, 61, joined KPMG as an accountant in 1963 upon graduation from Emory University and was elected to the partnership in 1972. Over the course of his career at KPMG, he was a member of its board of directors and its management committee. He performed numerous peer review audits and “quality of audits” reviews during his career.

Purcell is a member of the Emory University board of trustees and the Fuqua School of Business board of advisors at Duke University. He has served on the board of directors of the United Way of Atlanta, the Atlanta Metropolitan Salvation Army, the Woodruff Arts Center, the Georgia Chamber of Commerce, the Atlanta Chamber of Commerce, the Retarded Citizens of Atlanta, the Atlanta Convention and Visitors Bureau, Atlanta Rotary Club and the Atlanta Athletic Club.

Purcell was born in Ball Ground, Ga., and graduated from Newnan High School. He attended Emory-at-Oxford before transferring to Emory University in Atlanta, where he earned a BBA degree in accounting. He and his wife, Martha, have two daughters and five grandchildren.