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Business community steps up to support the Atlanta Public Schools

By Maria Saporta

When it comes to the Atlanta Public Schools, the Atlanta business community is staying engaged both with financial and leadership support.

The Community Foundation for Greater Atlanta announced Thursday that Atlanta’s corporate donors have committed $200,000 so far to support the transitional phase of incoming Atlanta Public Schools’ Superintendent Dr. Meria Carstarphen.

When that is combined with $147,000 that has been previously raised to support the Atlanta Public Schools’ strategic leadership initiatives, nearly $350,000 has been committed to the APS Improvement Fund at the Community Foundation to support this critical period in the changing leadership at APS.

“I’d like to thank these members of the Atlanta Committee for Progress for their steadfast engagement in Atlanta Public Schools,” said Atlanta Mayor Kasim Reed. “With a new board, a new superintendent and a community invested in excellence, there is no limit to what we can accomplish on behalf of Atlanta’s children.”

Although the Atlanta Public Schools are not under the mayor’s control or part of the city’s government, Mayor Reed’s Atlanta Committee for Progress, which includes many of the city’s top power brokers, have been urged to step in and support various city-wide initiatives, even if they are not directly under the city’s governance structure.

“Our corporate leaders have answered the mayor’s call because they are acutely aware that an excellent school system is key to the future well-being of our city,” said Alicia Philipp, president of the Community Foundation.

The following corporate donors have committed to the campaign to date, with amounts ranging from $10,000 to $25,000. These donors have given permission for their names be released to the public:

  • AGL Resources
  • Bank of America
  • Delta Air Lines
  • Emory Healthcare
  • Georgia-Pacific
  • Georgia Power Company
  • Invesco
  • SunTrust
  • The Coca-Cola Company

“With the help of The Community Foundation, Mayor Kasim Reed and corporate members of the Atlanta Committee for Progress, Dr. Meria Carstarphen has a tremendous head start on her superintendency,” said Courtney English, chair of the Atlanta School Board. “Their support has allowed Dr. Carstarphen to be prepared on Day One to address the needs of Atlanta’s schoolchildren.”

Since 1951, the Community Foundationfor Greater Atlanta has been connecting donors, nonprofits and community leaders to strengthen the Atlanta region through philanthropy. In 2013, The Community Foundation awarded an estimated $131 million in gifts and grants to nonprofit organizations throughout the 23-county metro Atlanta region and beyond. For more information please visit the Community Foundation website.

Maria Saporta

Maria Saporta, Editor, is a longtime Atlanta business, civic and urban affairs journalist with a deep knowledge of our city, our region and state.  Since 2008, she has written a weekly column and news stories for the Atlanta Business Chronicle. Prior to that, she spent 27 years with The Atlanta Journal-Constitution, becoming its business columnist in 1991. Maria received her Master’s degree in urban studies from Georgia State and her Bachelor’s degree in journalism from Boston University. Maria was born in Atlanta to European parents and has two young adult children.



  1. Burroughston Broch June 20, 2014 12:18 am

    The title should be “The business community continues to control the Atlanta Public Schools.”Report


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