Mike and his wife, Patricia, grew up in Alabama – Mike in Mobile and Patricia in Montgomery. They have lived in north Alabama for over 30 years. In 2003, Mike and Pat moved from SE Huntsville to their present home in west Madison (Limestone County). The Potters have been married for over 40 years. They have two married daughters and three grandchildren - one in high school, one in West Madison Elementary and one new arrival! Mike also has a sister and over a dozen extended family members living in Madison / North Alabama. The Potters are active members of St John’s Catholic Church.
Mike is a 20 year Army veteran that retired in 1990 as a lieutenant colonel. He served two tours overseas and twice commanded soldiers. In the Army, Mike spent a total of 7 years at Redstone Arsenal in research and development assignments as a systems engineer with the Patriot program and later with the Missile Command’s laboratories. After the Army, Mike continued his systems engineering career with the Raytheon Company in Huntsville. Mike rose in Raytheon’s technical ranks to the level of engineering fellow before he retired in 2008. He was twice recognized by Raytheon for technical honors.
Mike holds a Bachelor of Science degree in applied mathematics from Spring Hill College, Mobile, Al (1970). Mike graduated from the Army's prestigious guided missile systems course in 1975 and was then selected by the Army to attend graduate school in electrical engineering. His MSEE degree is from the University of Texas at El Paso (1977). Mike also completed the US Air Force, Air Command and Staff College at the Air University, Maxwell AFB. In 1985, Mike received one of the two initial Army research fellowships to the Rand Corporation, Santa Monica, California.
Retirement from Raytheon in 2008 did not decreased the level of activity in Mike’s life. Mike began contributing to his Madison community shortly after moving here in 2003. He has served on the board of the Taylor’s Crossing homeowners association (HOA) since 2003 and been its president since 2008. He believes HOAs should provide potential homeowners full discovery about the health and welfare of the neighborhood association. He created an extensive disclosure document for Taylor’s Crossing that is updated annually.
In 2004 Mike was appointed to be a City transportation advocate to the area’s Metropolitan Planning Organization (MPO). He served on the Citizens Advisory Committee (CAC) to the MPO until November 2012 and was its vice-chairman for 4 years. Through participation in the CAC, Mike gained an appreciation for the transportation needs across Madison and east Limestone Counties, as well as insight into the needs of Madison’s internal road plans.
In 2008, Mike was appointed to the City’s Planning Commission (PC) where he began to work on Madison’s growing residential and commercial development. He completed training with the University of North Alabama to become a certified Alabama planning and zoning official (CAPZO) in 2009 and was recertified in 2011. He was voted by his Planning Commission peers to serve as its Chairman in January 2012. Mike was active in the development of Madison’s Growth Plan and the ATRIP road projects submitted to the Alabama Department of Transportation in the Spring of 2012.
Mike’s is an advocate for balance growth and living within available resources. District 4 is unique in that it spans two counties, contains many of the oldest neighborhoods in Madison, several large-scale apartment complexes, most of the City’s industrial base, as well as the newest residential growth in east Limestone County. Mike believes his background with the Metropolitan Planning Organization and his service on the Planning Commission will be valuable in his work as a Council Member.
Mike serves as the Council representative to the Planning Commission and also the Industrial Development Board. He also functions as Council liaison to the Madison Senior Center, the Municipal Court System and the Engineering Department.