ATL concessions: Review teams’ identity, once guarded, now released

By David Pendered

A contentious issue in Atlanta’s recent airport concessions programs has come to a close, with Mayor Kasim Reed’s administration fulfilling its promise to release the names of members of the selection teams that chose food, drink and retail concessionaires.

The administration also released information it had not previously offered to provide – the score sheets that show the final rating the selection teams awarded to each team. The underlying data used to create the final ratings were not provided.

Reed had promised in June to release the names of members of the selection team as part of his effort to show that the concessions competition was clean and above board.

In a statement released after Common Cause of Georgia had raised on June 8 the issue of corruption in past airport contracts to support its call for campaign finance reform, Reed’s administration stated:

“The names of the evaluation members, once finalized, will be released to the public.”

During the course of intervening months, the administration has stepped back from that statement and not released the identity of team members. A specific reason was not stated, but the tacit explanation is that legal opinions evolve over time and the opinion on releasing the names had evolved into a thought that the names should not be released until after the mayor had signed the contracts.

The administration released the names of the review teams Jan. 5. The next day, the administration released the score sheets that show the final rating the selection teams awarded to each team. The underlying data used to create the final ratings were not provided.

The score sheets do not contain much guidance on how to interpret them. When Councilmember Felicia Moore received a copy during a meeting, she observed that she could not determine how to read the document.

Here are the names of members of the selection teams:

  • Patricia Armes – Concessions Accounting Manager
  • Paul Brown – Concessions Director
  • Shelley Lamar – Planning Manager
  • Paul Michael Leaf Jr. –  Principal Architect
  • Robert Lewis III –  Concessions Compliance Manager
  • William Murphy – Land & Property Utilization Manager
  • Robert Palmer – Director of Maintenance
  • Willie Self – Senior Audit Manager
  • David Sellers – Director of Properties
  • Douglas Strachan – Creative Innovations Manager
  • Hugh Jason Terreri – Airport Contract Administrator
  • David Vogt – Art Program Manager
  • Harland Chris Warner –  Operations Manager
  • Chiquetta West – Management Analyst
  • Demetria Wideman – Concession Marketing Manager

To read the score sheets, click here.

 

 

David Pendered, Managing Editor, is an Atlanta journalist with more than 30 years experience reporting on the region’s urban affairs, from Atlanta City Hall to the state Capitol. Since 2008, he has written for print and digital publications, and advised on media and governmental affairs. Previously, he spent more than 26 years with The Atlanta Journal-Constitution and won awards for his coverage of schools and urban development. David graduated from North Carolina State University and was a Western Knight Center Fellow. David was born in Pennsylvania, grew up in North Carolina and is married to a fifth-generation Atlantan.

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