Tracy D. Masters grew up in Stone Mountain, Ga., where his grandfather once owned a farm and also worked for the trolley line that took people to downtown Atlanta. When he graduated from high school, he joined the Navy, then put himself through the University of Georgia on the G.I. Bill.

After college, he taught school for a year and then started looking for another job. He took an aptitude test that pointed him toward a career as a parole officer, which he pursued while putting himself through night law school. His ideal job at the time was the one he has now — director of legal services for the Georgia Board of Pardons and Paroles.