Former workforce development administrator for ARC, Atlanta pleads guilty to bribery
By David Pendered
A former ARC administrator of federally funded workforce training programs, who later worked for Atlanta’s workforce training program, has pleaded guilty to federal charges of accepting bribes during his work with ARC.
Marc Hannon-White, 52, of Atlanta pleaded guilty to accepting bribes from workforce training providers while he worked for the Atlanta Regional Commission, according to a statement released Jan. 30 by the office of U.S. Attorney Byung J. “BJay” Pak, of the Atlanta district.
In exchange for the bribes, Hannon-White steered federally subsidized students to the training providers who had paid him a fee, according to a statement. The federal subsidies brought by the students enriched the training providers.
The investigation pertained only to the time Hannon-White worked for the ARC, according to statements from Pak’s office. The incidents occurred between February 2014 and January 2015.
Additional charges were contained in the federal indictment handed down Nov. 5, 2019: Charges included conspiracy to commit bribery, conspiracy to commit extortion, and extortion.
This statement describes the case as presented by federal prosecutors:
- “The Atlanta Regional Commission administers WIOA (Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act) and WIA (Workforce Investment Act) funds by serving as the administrative agency for the Atlanta Regional Workforce Development Board for the Georgia counties of Cherokee, Clayton, Douglas, Fayette, Gwinnett, Henry, and Rockdale. In this role, ARC oversees federally funded workforce development programs for those seven counties.
- “Between February 2014 and January 2015, Hannon-White worked for the division of ARC that administered, managed, and staffed those federally funded workforce development programs. During this time, Hannon-White used his position to solicit and accept payments from training providers that received federal funds for each qualified student they trained. In all, more than $15,000 in federal funds were at issue. As detailed in the indictment, Hannon-White arranged some of the bribe payments by text, sending his bank account number to one training provider who then caused money to be deposited into the account in exchange for receiving additional students.”
The ARC declined to comment through a spokesman, who said the agency would not comment on the pending adjudication.
After leaving the ARC, Hannon-White took a job with Atlanta’s workforce development program, now called Worksource Atlanta.
Hannon-White’s profile lists his title and duties with the city on the website of an entity named General Assembly. The site states General Assembly, “provides award-winning dynamic training to close the global skills gap” and provides a, “global learning experience, with campuses in 20 cities.”
According to Hannon-White’s profile on generalassemb.ly:
- “Marc A. Hannon-White is the Business Relations Manager with Work Source Atlanta, the bureau of the City of Atlanta under the Executive Offices of the Mayor. Work Source Atlanta’s primary purpose is to administer employment and training programs under the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA) to the citizens of Atlanta and to offer workforce solution services to metro Atlanta businesses.
- “WorkSource Atlanta helps businesses recruit qualified employees, develop a workforce equipped with relevant skills through customized job-based training programs, and up-skill their current workforce.
Marc has over 15 years of experience in Economic and Workforce Development in the Atlanta Region. Marc has an undergraduate degree in Economics from Auburn University and a Master’s in Public Policy from Georgia State University. Marc has a wife Felicia and daughter Emilee and they reside in Smyrna, Georgia”
Hannon-White left the city’s employment in August 2019, a spokesman for Atlanta Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms said Thursday in a text.
The city announced in June 2019 that Worksource Atlanta would be integrated into the city’s development arm, Invest Atlanta. The mayor was not quoted in the statement. Invest Atlanta President and CEO Eloisa Klementich was quoted:
- “This integration will allow for greater collaboration with companies large and small to streamline the process of developing talent and connecting job-ready candidates with employment opportunities in high-growth industries. Together, we will leverage our strengths to serve the workforce needs of our businesses community better and help more Atlantans build wealth through good, middle-income jobs.”