It’s back to square one for Murphy Crossing. The Atlanta BeltLine Inc. has terminated a memo of understanding that it had with the development team that had proposed investing $200 million to transform a 20-acre site ...
Historically, affordable housing units in Atlanta have been concentrated in communities lacking in amenities like public transportation access, grocery stores and solid schools. The COVID-19 crisis has shone a glaring spotlight on the need to change ...
If you happened to come across a house floating through the air on Atlanta's Westside this morning, worry not; that's just part of a new affordable housing push by developer Place Properties.
By MARTA MARTA will host two virtual meetings to provide an update on Clayton County transit projects and seek public input on planning initiatives on Wednesday, Sept. 23 at 6:30 p.m. and Saturday, Sept. 26 at noon. During the one-hour meetings, participants will hear from MARTA officials about capital projects, system-wide enhancements and future planning activity in Clayton County. Participants may also submit questions and provide comment. “From the new multipurpose bus operations and maintenance facility to the recently opened transit hub at the Justice Center, Clayton County has a number of exciting projects that underscore MARTA’s commitment to the community and our customers,” said MARTA General Manager and CEO Jeffrey Parker. “We continue to advance projects focused on enhancing the customer experience and improving regional connectivity.” Meeting Details: Wednesday, Sept. 23: Time: 6:30 p.m. – 7:30 p.m. Video Conferencing Link: http://tiny.cc/ClaytonWednesday Livestream: itsmarta.com Call-in: 1-855-797-9485 Access Code: 131 420 8353 Saturday, Sept. 26: Time: noon – 1 p.m. Video Conferencing Link: http://tiny.cc/ClaytonSaturday Livestream: itsmarta.com Call-in: 1-855-797-9485 Access Code: 131 260 1980 This is sponsored content.
Deisha Barnett and Melissa Butler join the rapidly growing BIPOC-focused brand on its 10-year anniversary Urban Skin Rx® is pleased to announce the appointments of Deisha Barnett and Melissa Butler to its Board of Directors. Ms. Barnett is the Chief Brand & Communications Officer and Head of Diversity & Inclusion at the Metro Atlanta Chamber. In prior roles, Barnett led marketing and communications strategy for Walmart and Procter & Gamble, with expertise in multicultural consumer-focused initiatives. Ms. Butler is the Founder and CEO of The Lip Bar LLC and a pioneering entrepreneur dedicated to beauty industry diversity, vegan beauty products, and disruption of beauty industry norms. Ms. Barnett and Ms. Butler join Board of Directors members Rachel Roff, Founder and CEO of Urban Skin®, Steven Skoler, Co-Founder and Managing Director of Friend Skoler & Co., and Cheryl Moss, Director of Friend Skoler & Co. Friend Skoler & Co., an investment firm focused on leading brands in the smaller end of the middle market, recently made an investment to support the rapid growth of the company. Celebrating the brand’s 10th anniversary, Urban Skin Rx® was founded in 2010 and quickly became a revolutionary force in the industry by advocating for accessible clinical skincare, including addressing the concerns of women with melanin-rich skin tones. “Rachel and the Urban Skin Rx® team care deeply about their consumer. From building self-confidence through skincare to actively advocating for under-voiced communities, they had equity and inclusion at the center of their work long before these were trending topics,” said Deisha Barnett. “I’m inspired by the team’s vision and the example they are setting in the beauty industry. Together, we will focus on growing retail and direct-to-consumer channels and supporting the longevity of Urban Skin Rx®’s overall brand vision.” Melissa Butler brings her perspective as a fellow beauty brand founder, commenting, “I’m a big fan of companies that see the market as it should be and not as it is. Urban Skin Rx® helped revolutionize skincare for people of color when no one else dared to invest in or market to Black and Brown women. I’m confident in the continued growth of the brand because I know that customer satisfaction and product efficacy is at the core of what they do incredibly well.” “In founding Urban Skin Rx®, my goal was to bring more inclusivity to the skincare industry, especially for the consumer with melanin-rich skin. This responsibility not only applies to creating innovative formulas, but also to being a firm advocate and ally for the customers we serve and the issues they face every day,” notes Founder and CEO, Rachel Roff. “I’m thrilled to welcome Deisha and Melissa, who are each tremendously talented and bring executive experience to our company. Throughout this brand’s trajectory, our mission has remained the same, but with their expertise I know we can support our customers even further.” Over the last decade, Ms. Roff and her growing team have created a best-selling line of clinical skincare products that has attracted a loyal following by offering innovative, high-quality formulas and exceptional customer service. Today, Urban Skin Rx® products are available online at www.urbanskinrx.com, Dermstore.com, QVC.com and HSN.com, and at over 5,000 retail locations across the U.S., including Target, Ulta, and CVS. The company also recently achieved its first international retail presence with distribution in Nigeria. About Urban Skin Rx® Urban Skin Rx® was founded in Charlotte, NC in 2010 to develop clinical skincare products that address the needs of consumers with melanin-rich skin tones. Urban Skin Rx® products deliver blends of high strength ingredients formulated to address the most common skincare concerns of women of color, including improving the appearance of hyperpigmentation and uneven skin tone. Urban Skin Rx® products are sold at www.urbanskinrx.com and at over 5,000 retail locations across the U.S. For more information on Urban Skin Rx®, please visit www.urbanskinrx.com. For press inquiries, please contact Rebecca Leiby, mml PR at email@example.com. This is sponsored content.
By Ellie Hensley, Midtown Alliance The Americans With Disabilities Act (ADA) was passed 30 years ago in an effort to equalize opportunities for people based on disability. The wide-ranging law covered areas from employment to transportation and public accommodations to access to state and local government programs. Midtown Alliance recognizes that while some progress has been made on the ground, many of the tenets of the ADA still have not been realized. Part of our mission includes creating streets and sidewalks that work for everybody, and a district that is accessible for all. This year, we’re enlisting the help of people whose experiences can help us improve the design of our transportation network. We started with Carden Wyckoff, an Atlanta native who has lived in Midtown since 2019 and rides MARTA frequently. Wyckoff has facioscapulohumeral muscular dystrophy, a disorder that causes progressive muscle weakness, and she uses a motorized wheelchair to get from place to place. “What brought me to Midtown was the central location,” Wyckoff said. “I found myself taking MARTA on the weekends after work, and I would frequent Piedmont Park and Ponce City Market.” Wyckoff finds Midtown to be one of the more accessible parts of the city, but certain places still are difficult to get around because of legacy narrow sidewalks, utility boxes, sign posts and other clutter. “You’ll find some issues closer to Piedmont Park, where there are more trees,” she said. “In between 13th and 14th Street on Piedmont Avenue there is an enormous tree, and it’s a trip hazard.” Since the Midtown Improvement District was created in 2000, millions of dollars have been invested in public improvement projects and infrastructure projects including streetscapes and bridgescapes, traffic signals and parks and plazas. From November 2014 through August 2020, Midtown Alliance performed nearly $1.2 million in sidewalk “spot” repairs, including replacing concrete, building new curbs and ADA-compliant ramps. But in a rapidly densifying district with constant utility work, even maintaining the current state of the sidewalks can be a challenge. “Improving accessibility in the public right-of-way has always been a big part of our work,” said Midtown Alliance Director of Transportation and Sustainability Dan Hourigan. “It can be difficult and expensive to meet ADA standards, but it’s imperative that we do so. We’ve made tremendous progress on accessibility, but there’s still more to be done.” The nature of a growing urban district with lots of pedestrian and vehicle traffic inherently means Midtown’s streets and sidewalks are a work in progress. But Midtown Alliance is working with the City of Atlanta and private developers on a number of actionable projects that will help bring the district closer to realizing the goals set forth by the ADA 30 years ago. For example, our upcoming “Last Mile Intersections” project will install new traffic signals at seven locations and enhance pedestrian crossings at 24 intersections to improve connectivity and safety for people accessing MARTA rail stations and local and regional bus stops. The Piedmont and Juniper Complete Streets projects will both include wider sidewalks and pedestrian-scaled lighting. These projects also include building new ADA-compliant ramps. And through the West Peachtree and Spring Quick-Build Projects, as part of Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms Action Plan for Safer Streets are focused on LIT (light individual transport for bikes and e-scooters) lanes, Midtown Alliance has plans to improve accessibility along segments of each corridor after the Atlanta DOT delivers its projects. Some of these projects, such as Juniper Street, have been a long time coming, but the ADA’s 30th anniversary highlights the need to move forward on them with our partners as soon as possible. “The anniversary of the ADA legislation is an important reminder for us to strive to do more and to demand more,” Hourigan said. “It’s also a reminder that our circumstances can change at any time and we may be the one who needs these accommodations.” Wyckoff describes the ADA as an “incredible piece of legislation” that has improved the lives of everyone, regardless of whether they have a disability. When she does see an accessibility issue, she advocates to get it fixed by contacting city leadership, posting about it on her social media accounts (follow her on Twitter @CardenOfMilk) and speaking up about it on her podcast, “Freewheelin’ with Carden.” “We’re looking to create a more inclusive world, and we still face barriers. It really starts with using your voice,” she said. If you identify an accessibility issue in Midtown, let us know by emailing us. This is sponsored content.
By Urban Land Institute We spoke with Ashley about her switch from aspiring restaurateur to real estate sales, what’s cooking at Invest Atlanta and her plans for leading ULI Atlanta’s Center for Leadership 2021 Class amid the pandemic. At age 25, Ashley Jones was working at The Coca-Cola Company as a territory sales manager when she came up with a business plan to open her own restaurant. Besides fresh produce and staffing costs, she realized real estate would be her most expensive cost — but she came up with a “crazy idea” to make it work. “I figured that if I could develop my own building, whether it was a strip center or a mixed-use property, I would have another source of income even if the restaurant failed,” she said. So, Jones enrolled in graduate school at Virginia Commonwealth University to study real estate and urban land development. “Little did I know how complex real estate was. I started to understand, ‘Oh, this is real estate development.’ It really made sense.” From there, it didn’t take her long to discover her true calling. “I remember when the director of the program at VCU asked me if I had ever considered real estate sales, considering my background in B2B sales,” she said. Now, she’s never looked back. Recipe for Success In 2009, Jones hit the ground running as a Commercial Sales and Leasing Agent with the Cushman & Wakefield | Thalhimer office in her hometown of Richmond, Virginia. “I was asked to come on board as an office broker,” Jones said. “That is where they had an opening, but in a town like Richmond, you learn to do everything.” About five years later, she heard C&W was planning to expand its Atlanta office. “I literally ran to my broker and said, ‘I want to go! I want to make the jump’,” she said. He introduced her to John O’Neill, who serves as C&W’s President of the Central Region. “After a series of conversations, John welcomed me with open arms,” Jones said. Between 2013 to 2016, she worked on Tenant Advisory Services, providing strategic guidance and transaction management for corporate clients, including big hospitals and medical systems, on a regional and national basis. “Through this process, I started working with more nonprofits and community-based organizations,” Jones said. “I started to see recurring patterns in regards to lack of capital, or some landlords not wanting these types of tenants in their space — the list went on and on.” She thought back to the inspiring lessons of development she had learned in grad school, and could see her heart was not 100% into full-time brokerage. “While I loved working at Cushman, I also really started to develop a strong connection to seeing communities improve — not improving like we often think of in terms of gentrification, but basic stuff like making sure residents have access to quality produce or a YMCA Head Start program,” Jones said. One day, the pieces all came together when she reached out to Alan Ferguson, Senior Vice President of Community Development at Invest Atlanta, the city’s official economic development authority. At the time, Jones was working on a non-profit deal in which Ferguson served on the board, and they had bonded over a mutual passion for real estate. Invest Atlanta was looking for a new person to primarily handle acquisitions, and although Ferguson was looking for someone at the junior level, Jones was again ready to jump. “He is the best boss I’ve ever had in my life,” she said. “He thinks about real estate and most importantly community development differently.” Since joining as a Real Estate Manager in 2016, Jones was promoted last year to her current role as the Assistant Director of Commercial Development. In addition to acquisitions and dispositions, her focus is on working with commercial developers to find incentive support through a myriad of ways — part of Invest Atlanta’s larger mission to advance the city’s global competitiveness by growing a strong economy, building vibrant communities and increasing economic prosperity for all Atlantans. “My work is almost like solving a puzzle or a game,” Jones said. “I genuinely like it.” Big Appetite for Small Business The puzzles vary in size, scope and difficulty. Many take years to go from asking, “What if?” to completion, such as the Memorial Drive Greenway which could be a five- to 10-year project. Some are really massive, cool ones like West End Mall, a 12.5-acre site in a reemerging commercial district located one mile southwest of Downtown Atlanta, surrounded by four HBCUs and connected to the Atlanta BeltLine. One of Jones’ proudest wins is The MLK iVillage, the city’s first shipping container village offering affordable, attractive and transit-oriented retail at the HE Holmes Marta Station. “That was a project that we were told ‘no’ a million times, yet our team was able to get it done,” she said. “That is a cool project because it’s helping small businesses.” Another recent project gaining traction — and local news coverage — is the Sweet Auburn Technical Assistance and Predevelopment Fund, which Invest Atlanta approved in January 2019 to provide resources to real estate development and economic vibrancy in the historic Sweet Auburn District. Earlier this month, ABC Chicken and Waffles opened in the Freedom Corner building adjacent to the Madam C.J. Walker Museum on Auburn Avenue, thanks in part to financial support from Invest Atlanta. “We’re literally walking arm in arm with Central Atlanta Progress and 1045 Advisors to mobilize the property owners — small developers as well as the community and faith-based organizations — to help them reconceptualize what the rebirth of Sweet Auburn will look like,” Jones said. “That is really exciting to me. There’s something about seeing the small projects touching small businesses that really pulls my heartstrings.” Especially in an unpredictable year like this one, Jones is staying focused by celebrating each small victory, whether it’s helping a developer achieve a full capital stack for a project or helping …
By: John Hope Bryant Disasters are unpredictable. Even with prior warning, we are rarely, if ever, prepared for the mental and emotional tax excised on us individually and collectively as a community. Right now, we find ourselves in the middle of a global health crisis, an economic shift felt by millions, and in the throes of battling a series of back-to-back natural disasters. Amidst these trying times, we must remember – disasters do not stop, and we cannot sit by idly, becoming victims of circumstance. The best way to fight back against the unknown is by being prepared. Devastation strikes without discrimination and it is never clear when it will impact you and your community. It is often said that the best offense is a good defense, preparedness is just that. Financial preparation for emergencies can save you and your family tremendous heartache and stress after disaster strikes. The simple actions you take, or do not take, today can greatly affect your future and way of life. Recently, the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) recorded that more than 25 million Americans were impacted by a natural disaster in 2017; and, in the past three years alone, natural disasters have accounted for nearly $500 billion in damage and losses. While it is not possible to control the disruptions that nature can sometimes bring into our lives, we can control our response to them through financial literacy. Financial literacy is the cornerstone of preparedness; the two go together. When you understand the mechanics of money and resources – and how it can be leveraged to bring you to your desired future – you attain a sense of control and empowerment you may not have had before. Many times, individuals can tend to focus on what they do not have as a reason for delaying emergency preparations. Rather than focusing on what you do not have, think about shifting your focus on what you do have and maximizing its output and potential. Remember, consistently taking small actions yields big results over time. Here are a few things that you can do to be prepared for any kind of financial emergency you may find yourself in: Make saving a priority. It is important to understand that federal disaster assistance will not make you whole after disaster strikes – you must make saving and proper insurance a priority. For your savings, consider creating an additional “cash-on-demand” savings account that you add to periodically that you can take with you in case you are required to evacuate in a hurry. Maintain insurance. After Hurricane Harvey in 2017, the average flood insurance payout to homeowners who flooded was $120,000. Conversely, homeowners who took on water and applied for FEMA for federal financial assistance through FEMA received $4,000 to 7,000 on average. Therefore, it is important to understand your risks and ensure your assets have the proper level of coverage. Review your policy options, policies, and other relevant paperwork consistently to ensure that information is up to date. Have a written plan. A comprehensive financial plan serves as your road map reminding you of your desired destination and the actions required to get there. Make copies of all important financial and legal documents. Many times, when disasters strike, property is severely damaged or destroyed. Unfortunately, for many, they lose access to important documents like mortgage information and birth certificates which are helpful in applying for recovery assistance. Additionally, in today’s technological environment, make sure your important documents are available digitally by storing them in the cloud, email, or mobile device. If you need assistance in this process, Operation HOPE may be able to help. For nearly three decades, Operation HOPE has been empowering Americans through financial literacy with a standing commitment to prepare individuals and families for financial disasters, of any kind, and seeing them through to recovery. Through HOPE Coalition America (HCA), the organization provides preparation coaching, at no cost to clients, to help them get back on their feet should they be adversely affected by disaster – be it natural or manmade. Additionally, their financial wellbeing coaches are trained to walk alongside clients in their most vulnerable times to help them regain a sense of dignity and normalcy in their lives. They can help clients build emergency financial plans, negotiate their mortgage payments, apply for eligible post-disaster FEMA assistance, speak to lenders concerning the terms and condition of their loans, and more. Life is an adventure, plan for it and be ready for the unexpected. September is National Preparedness Month and it is the perfect time to make a commitment to ensure you and your family are financially prepared – by doing so, you are investing in your future. For more resources, visit the Ready Campaign and the Financial Literacy and Education Commission.
Georgia Bio’s Patient Advocacy Summit Aims to Strengthen Patient Voice WHAT: The COVID-19 pandemic has amplified the need to change the approach of how people and organizations work together to bring treatments and cures to those that need it most. The Georgia Bio Patient Advocacy Summit will highlight health equity and access issues by bringing together the patient advocacy community to showcase best practices and cutting-edge examples of how life sciences companies can more fully incorporate the patient voice into the work they do—not just approaching regulatory applications or at commercialization, but throughout the drug development cycle. DATE/TIME: September 22, 2020 | 10am – 12pm WHERE: Virtual Summit WHY: Georgia Bio, a 31 year old trade association supporting the life sciences in Georgia believes the patient voice is critical. This summit will amplify the patient voice and encourage greater patient involvement at every stage of the continuum. Our goal is greater access for patients who need it most, and health equity issues are addressed, and solutions are provided. A Georgia Patient Advocacy Alliance will be announced. WHO: Media Invited to listen in to this important conversation. MEDIA REGISTRATION: Please contact Maria Thacker Goethe firstname.lastname@example.org to register This is sponsored content.
By Paul Donsky Metro Atlanta grew at a relatively healthy clip in in the year before the COVID-19 pandemic hit, adding nearly 64,000 people to bring the 10-county region’s total population to 4.7 million. That’s according to the latest population estimates from the Atlanta Regional Commission. There’s a lot of data to parse, so let’s delve into the numbers. How Does This Year’s Growth Stack up to Recent Trends? Population growth is down slightly from the year before, reflecting a modest cooling in the local job market. The 1.37% population increase in 2019-20 compares to 1.59% in 2018-19. Taking a step back, this year’s population growth was a little better than average over the past decade. The 2010s began amid the fallout of the Great Recession, which dampened growth for a number of years in metro Atlanta and across the country. Overall, the 10-county region added 585,000 people in the past decade – the equivalent of all of metro Chattanooga. Learn more.
By Dentons As the saying goes, “Eight weeks before an election is a lifetime in politics.” If you have any doubts about the truth of this adage, we suggest speaking with “Presidents” Michael Dukakis or Hillary Clinton! Simply put, there are few, if any, slam dunks in politics. Elections continue to have the capacity to surprise and confound. When the Democratic primary process began with over 25 candidates, who would ever have thought that we would end up with an election between two of the oldest candidates ever to run for the office? Current polling indicates that, if the election were held today, Vice President Biden is near or above the 270 electoral votes he needs to win election. These same polls say the Senate would flip, ever so narrowly, to Democratic control and the House Democratic majority would be relatively unchanged. However Labor Day is certainly not Election Day (see Dukakis and Hillary mentions above). And now is, historically, when the race officially begins. This Election Primer, the first in Dentons’ Election Series, sets the stage for the race to November. From the “top of the ticket” to the down-ballot congressional and state house contests across the country, we track the races that could change majorities in November. More detailed reports will be released as we get closer to election day. We hope this 10,000-foot view helps get you up to speed. Download the Labor Day 2020 Election Primer
By Bradley Roberts, Social Media and Content Manager at United Way of Greater Atlanta Belisa Urbina knew the well-being of her staff was her most important priority, but she had an important decision to make—she and her husband, Miguel, both. The two founded the nonprofit Ser Familia in 2001 after moving from Puerto Rico to Georgia in 1999. In the nearly two decades since its inception, Ser Familia has become a leading program in Georgia that provides family services to the Latino communities of the Greater Atlanta region. So, in March 2020 with the probable outbreak of the novel coronavirus on the horizon, Belisa says she reached out to her employees and board members for input. “I remember that on a Sunday I sent a text to my board members and asked if they could meet with me via phone that afternoon,” Belisa says. “We went through every scenario—what if we closed the offices, we kept this one open, closed that one—we crunched the numbers and made plans from ABC up to Z.” Belisa says Ser Familia ultimately made the decision to keep their offices open through the worst of the pandemic. She said it was important—too important—that the Latino community have a place to come “in the midst of a tremendous crisis,” and “be listened to and be supported.” “We were blessed to be able to provide emergency assistance in the way we could do it,” she says. “We have provided the same services that we provided [before the pandemic], and on top of that, we are doing an emergency relief effort of really large proportions.” Ser Familia aims to strengthen Latino families and equip Latino youth, couples, parents and families through programs that “teach improved life, leadership and communication skills,” and they offer social services to Latino families—for almost 20 years they have offered youth programs, case management, victim support services, mental health counseling, immigration legal relief efforts and other emergency services, Belisa says. To this day, Belisa says Ser Familia has supplied more than $400K in emergency rental assistance. And the demand has increased since the COVID-19 outbreak. Ser Familia was one of the most recent recipients of grant funds made possible through the Greater Atlanta COVID-19 Response and Recovery Fund, a joint effort from United Way of Greater Atlanta and the Community Foundation for Greater Atlanta. On Aug. 11, United Way and Community Foundation announced the seventh round of grants for the COVID-19 response. Ser Familia received $150,000 to meet the increased demand for emergency financial assistance. The seventh round of grants totaled roughly $1.13 million and targeted emergency financial assistance for housing-related costs. The grants went to 10 organizations in response to the region’s needs resulting from COVID-19. The Latino community was one of the “first ones to be impacted,” Belisa says, after state and local officials made efforts to stem the spread of the coronavirus by shutting down small businesses, restaurants, gyms and schools. As of Sept. 1, COVID-19, which is a respiratory illness with symptoms such as cough, fever and in severe cases, difficulty breathing, has infected more than 6 million nationwide and killed more than 183,000 people. “The hospitality industry, construction, all of those where the Latino families work went out the door,” Belisa says. “From this point, there’s no recovery in sight.” Belisa’s team did a survey around the second week of April to see just how great the impact in her community was. She said Ser Familia found that of the surveyed, about 65 percent had lost one or both sources of income in the home. Ser Familia had pivoted to address the immediate needs of the community, Belisa says, which meant offering tutoring, addressing food insecurity, COVID-19 testing, etc. She’s been thankful for her staff and their ability to step up during these times—often working long hours, weekends. With every challenge that COVID-19 brought, Belisa says her staff went “toe to toe with it.” “Sometimes you think that you have the right people on [staff], but it’s times like these when you just know you have the right people,” Belisa says. “My staff has been here and have shown up every day, every time. They have gone beyond everything that I have imagined they would do. They have made every difference in the world.” She was also extremely grateful for the grant funds provided by United Way and Community Foundation. Without this partnership and support, she says, “none of this would be possible.” If you would like to help empower this work in communities across Greater Atlanta, donate to the Greater Atlanta COVID-19 Response and Recovery Fund. If you or someone you know lives within the city limits of Atlanta and are in need of emergency rental assistance, visit relief.uwga.org to see if you might be eligible for funds that could cover past due rent, utilities and move-in deposits as a result of impending eviction. This is sponsored content.
Recent Study Shows ATC Adds Value, Economic Mobility Across Region, State By Atlanta Technical College According to a recent economic impact study, Atlanta Technical College (ATC) has a $201.5M economic impact on the Atlanta region, accounting for more than 3,000 jobs. The study developed by EMSI, a national leading market data analysis firm, assessed the impact of ATC on the regional and statewide economies and the benefits generated by the college for students, taxpayers, and society. The results of the economic impact report show that ATC creates a positive net impact on the regional economy and generates a positive return on investment for students, and the greater community. “ATC and other technical colleges serve as the backbone for local economies, support essential workforce growth and expand economic mobility opportunities with an unmatched return on the investment,” said ATC President Dr. Victoria Seals. “At ATC, we continue to expand our positive impact on our local community through innovative corporate initiatives and collaborative partnerships like our Center for Workforce Innovation.” For every dollar invested in ATC, students gain $7.50 in lifetime earnings, taxpayers gain $7.80 in added tax revenue and public sector savings, and society gains $16.50 in additional income and social savings, as noted in the EMSI report. “ATC represents one of the best opportunities for students, taxpayers and the region with our impact stretching far beyond our local community.” said Dr. Seals. “Not only does ATC have an incredible 99% job placement rate, but we also offer students and taxpayers some of the highest returns on their investments and careers that remain in high demand and essential to our global economy.” ATC’s Impact At A Glance for FY2019 $27.6 Million – Operations Spending Impact $6.3 Million – Student Spending Impact $167.6 Million – Alumni Impact $201.5 Million – Total Impact 3,015 – Jobs Supported For more information or to view the EMSI report, click here. ### ABOUT ATLANTA TECHNICAL COLLEGE Atlanta Technical College is a vibrant part of the Technical College System of Georgia and was named its College of the Year in 2012. Prior to that, the college was selected as America’s Best Community College by Washington Monthly magazine. Most recently, Atlanta Technical College has been ranked one of the best in the nation for online courses and programs. In 2017, Atlanta Technical College celebrated 50 years of serving the City of Atlanta along with Fulton and Clayton Counties. For more information on Atlanta Technical College and its 150 programs, visit www.atlantatech.edu.
In celebration of Hispanic Heritage Month (Sept. 15 – Oct. 15), Communities in Schools of Atlanta is proud to feature a guest column from Jonathan Peraza Campos, site coordinator at Cross Keys High School in DeKalb County. Georgia is one of 12 states in the union with at least 1 million residents of Latin American descent. More than 60 million people from Latin American countries live in the United States. We represent the country’s largest ethnic minority at 18.5 percent. Black Americans constitute 13.4 percent of the population. At Communities in Schools of Atlanta, we serve thousands of Latinx students across the metro region. In early 2020 BC – before coronavirus – I joined the organization as one of two site coordinators at Cross Keys High School, where nearly 90 percent of the student population hails from a Latin American country. I had recently returned from Guatemala where I taught as a Fulbright ETA scholar. I’m the first-generation of relatives born in the United States but my roots go back to El Salvador and Guatemala. Growing up, resources were few, as were people who looked like me that I could look up to. Yet through sheer willpower, the support of my family, and the guidance of good samaritans, I am in school for my master’s degree and plan to follow that up with a doctoral degree. First-generation residents experience many of the same struggles as other minority groups – including discrimination and a lack of representation. In recent years, the severity of ethnic bias has become much more alarming and dangerous. Through our Latinxcellence program, CIS of Atlanta has implemented a four-pronged approach to better serve the Latinx community in our schools: 1) serving and empowering students, 2) communicating with and empowering parents, 3) communicating with and teachers and developing Latinx-friendly school cultures, and 4) collaborating with community partners. While teaching in Guatemala, I worked to disrupt my students’ and other teachers’ perceptions that the United States is a white, wealthy, and perfect English-speaking country by exposing them to the multiracial, multicultural, and multilingual diversity and history of the U.S. Here at CIS of Atlanta, I work to remind my students that they are smart enough, American enough, Latinx enough, to succeed. I teach them to see themselves beyond their imposter syndrome. Many of us who are first-generation, low-income, people of color, queer and trans, women and femmes, tend to see ourselves as unqualified or out of place. Indeed, Latinx are waking up to our collective and individual power and potential. Data show a continual increase in the number of Latinxs with at least some college experience. According to Pew Research, the share who have a bachelor’s degree or more education also increased over the decade, from 13 to 17 percent. As a first-generation college graduate, seeing Latinx professors in the classroom and on campus helped me picture myself having the same roles. That’s why building our Latinxcellence framework and working at Cross Keys is incredibly personal to me, cathartic even. I find myself talking to my younger self in conversations with students and helping them discover aspirations they’ve never considered exploring. Like me, many of these students come from single-family homes. Some are labeled as failing, written off when what they’re calling out for is attention, protection, and support. Culturally responsive, antiracist, and abolitionist education are what’s needed to ensure our education system works for our youth, especially those where English is a second language or they may not have access to family members who can help with homework or be present for school events. Communities in Schools of Atlanta and our allies are proud to join forces to pioneer here in the South culturally responsive programming and services to ensure Latinx students and their families can thrive in the U.S. and achieve Latinxcellence. This is sponsored content.
By Wendy Stewart, Bank of America Atlanta Market President As the coronavirus continues to impact our families and communities here in Atlanta, there is an ongoing urgency to help our most vulnerable and underserved populations; and while we’re learning more each day, there remains a bit of an unknown. Meeting our community’s evolving healthcare needs requires a collaborative partnership between businesses and health providers. At Bank of America, we are committed to helping slow the spread of the virus by distributing personal protective equipment (PPE) in local communities. We recently provided more than 140,000 masks to 14 Atlanta organizations, including Morehouse School of Medicine and Atlanta Public Schools. This was part of a nationwide effort to distribute nearly 4 million face masks to communities disproportionally impacted by the coronavirus, including communities of color, and is connected to our four-year, $1 billion commitment to help local communities address economic and racial inequality accelerated by a global pandemic. However, we believe more can be done. In our discussions with United Way of Greater Atlanta and the Global Health Crisis Coordination Center (GHC3), we discovered they need 1 million masks for distribution in the area, so we are partnering with the Metro Atlanta Chamber of Commerce to challenge other businesses for much-needed support and resources. This collaboration is our way of helping Atlantans protect themselves and others while keeping Georgia healthy. In this moment, our city needs all of us — we must uphold our responsibility to serve the communities where we live and work. To my fellow Atlanta business leaders: I challenge you to join this collective commitment to create a safer and healthier community. To the companies that have already pledged support, thank you. Together we can do this! To donate to the challenge or get more information on how to receive donations, contact the Metro Atlanta Chamber at email@example.com