"With this council now in place, it is our hope to uncover new approaches to make Georgia communities safer while increasing offender accountability, improving rehabilitation efforts and lowering costs," Deal said in a statement.
Among those appointed to the Special Council on Criminal Justice Reform was Douglas County District Attorney David McDade. He was the prosecutor in the case of Genarlow Wilson, a black teenager who served a lengthy prison sentence.
Wilson battled a mandatory 10-year prison term after he was caught on videotape having oral sex with a 15-year-old girl at a 2003 New Year's Eve party in Douglas County. He was released in 2007 after spending nearly three years in prison.
Also named to the council were Georgia Supreme Court Chief Justice Carol Hunstein and Linda Evans, a member of the Judicial Qualifications Commission and wife of Randy Evans, the governor's longtime attorney.
The other members announced Monday include: Todd Markle, executive counsel to the governor; state Reps. Mary Margaret Oliver, Jay Powell and Willie Talton; and state Sens. John Crosby, Bill Hamrick and Ron Ramsey.
The council was created during this year's legislative session. It will work with The Pew Charitable Trusts, a nonprofit group that will analyze the council's ideas. Deal has identified prison overcrowding as one of his concerns.
The council will make recommendations to the General Assembly by Nov. 1 for suggested legislation to be considered next year.