THE COMMERCE CLUB CONGLOMERATE: Where Small Business Comes to Grow

 THE COMMERCE CLUB CONGLOMERATE

Featuring Dave Moody, CEO,
C.D. Moody Construction

A recognized leader in the construction industry, C.D. Moody Construction has been delivering quality projects since 1988.

A recognized leader in the construction industry, C.D. Moody Construction has been delivering quality projects since 1988.

If you visit C.D. Moody Construction’s website, you would notice that their “History” section reads more like a page from a motivational, self-help manual than the chronological timeline one would expect. Much like the way its CEO speaks when presenting to an audience, the site is peppered with words and phrases like “people business,” “community involvement,” “relationships,” and “vision,” to name a few. The company boasts the tagline, “We are leaders building quality…” This is not just a clever advertising ploy, however, but tried and true testimony; for after you have met the company’s founder, who recently paid a visit to The Commerce Club, Atlanta’s premier business and civic club, you can’t help but to identify the man and his company as one and the same.

C.D. Moody – or Dave, as his friends prefer to call him – comes from a long line of ambitious dreamers. His grandfather, whom he sites as his first and most influential role model, arrived in Louisiana, in 1901, from British Honduras, with nothing, he says, but a dream and a passion.

Moody gazed off, remembering something in the far-off distance, as he fondly recalled this grandfather’s beloved words of encouragement, “Go for it! The hand is what it is.”

And so he did.

Beginning his company, now regarded as one of Atlanta’s Top 25 Commercial Contractors and Top 100 Private Companies by the Atlanta Business Chronicle, in 1988, with a team of just three employees, Moody, a graduate of Morehouse College, joked that his initial plan was fail-proof. “Be broke – then you can’t help but go up!” Having already tried his hand at a number of other enterprises, bounty hunting being one, he figured he may as well chase his real dream. Too, going into business with nothing, he laughed affectionately, meant that there was no chance of not being successful.

Successful is quite the understatement! 26 years later, the company has delivered more than 150 commercial projects valued at over two billion dollars. Some of his more high-profile work includes the Olympic Stadium, Turner Baseball Field, Philips Arena, Coca-Cola, Disney World, Mercedes Benz, Home Depot, and the new Maynard H. Jackson International Concourse at Atlanta’s Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport. Moody Construction’s professional reputation throughout the Atlanta community is as sound as its financial one.

Still, success and acclaim, and with these, the accompanying power and prestige which they bring, haven’t seemed to change the man much.  

“I went into business for myself because I had nothing to lose,” elaborated Moody. “I loved the dirt, the moving. I took the field assignments. I was the guy wearing the jeans.”

For a trained architect, this humble strategy, to take the important-but-still-somehow-lesser jobs paid off. Moody has built an Atlanta-based empire in that same dirt, wearing those same jeans.

“If you can’t do the work yourself in the beginning, you don’t need need to do it. You’ve got to know your product. You can’t successfully own a business if you don’t know the product, if you’ve never worked in the field. And in construction, or any business, you have to know the business. I still don’t wear anything that I can’t get cement or dirt on,” he affirmed.

He went on to credit more than just modest beginnings for the winning streak he’s on. He sited a vigorous work ethic, instilled in him by grandparents and others at a very young age (“You have to be willing to work hard” and “Be the best at what you do”); ambition (“Life is what we make it, regardless of how we start it” and “I didn’t have big dreams, so I’ve exceeded those. I’m trying to recreate those for the second half of my life. Make some big dreams – you’ll hit them”); and our progressive city (“Atlanta people got it really early about inclusion. Atlanta got it right. I never got a hand out, but I did get a fair chance. If you don’t make it, it’s on you!”), all as part of the equation that helped him attain his goals.

Not to sugar-coat things, Moody is quick to point out that a fair chance does not necessarily mean a free ride, and life was certainly not without its bumps in the road.

“Now I ask people, ‘How have you been a good mentor?’ Be honest. I try and tell people to tell others when you have failed and had to get up. People look at us and think we’ve had no hiccups along the way. So the greatest thing we can do is be honest.”

Honesty. Moody embodies this mantra daily, mentoring, speaking, and encouraging those he encounters to listen to his story and, in turn, to tell their own. A survivor of childhood sexual abuse, he has grown a grassroots fan-following – which, ironically, has unarguably given him more influence than what he has managed to achieve even with his business  – for the blog he began in 2012 in order to chronicle what he calls his “journey of life and healing.”

“This blog was started to celebrate 25 years in business. I quickly realized, as I opened up and dug deep inside, I couldn’t tell an accurate story [of] my journey in business without telling the accurate story of my life.”

Read in more than 80 countries, Moody is continually transparent throughout the blog’s posts, as he bravely tackles not just the sexual abuse he endured as a child, but subjects such as PTSD and panic attacks, trauma, his faith in God, and healing.

Speaking to his audience, a room full of small business owners, entrepreneurs, and up-and-comers, about the impact that all of these combined experiences have had on his company and the precautions one should take when in the business, Moody advised that one should embrace personal awareness.

“Everybody has a story. Know your story. It impacts your career. Know your triggers. Being an entrepreneur, a professional, you have to know what makes you tick.”

Upbeat and optimistic, C.D. Moody closed by reminding everyone not to make room for negativity in their lives. Regardless of what anyone has been through, happiness is most certainly obtainable.

“At the end of the day, life’s about what you make it,” he stated frankly. “I use my grandfather as an example because he thought he had a choice. He had a dream and a vision. The greatest thing that stops us is fear – real and imagined – and most of it is imaginary. You have to push through fear. There’s beauty on the other side.”

The Commerce Club Atlanta proudly presents programming geared toward small business each and every first Wednesday of the month: “Innovators, Trailblazers, Start-Ups, Entrepreneurs, Up-and-Comers and More … If This is You, You Won’t Want to Miss!”

 The Commerce Club Conglomerate: Mission Statement

The Commerce Club Conglomerate (CCC) was created in 2014 for Club Members and their guests as an assimilation of small businesses, their owners, employees, as well as their patrons and supporters to aid, assist, educate, and engage the small business sector. Understanding that small enterprises account for 52 percent of all U.S. workers, the CCC also recognizes the role that small business plays in our overall economic stability. The CCC serves to celebrate this strength by working to build and grow its businesses and leaders both in the Atlanta and global marketplaces.

The Commerce Club Conglomerate: Where Small Business Comes to Grow

To join this group or for reservations or additional information about these one-hour speaker luncheon events, please e-mail Anna.Chafen@ourclub.com or call 404.222.0191.

JEANS, JACK AND BABY BACK!

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The South is known for quite a few nice things – manners, charming drawls, and Southern belles, in no particular order and to name just a few – but the nicest of them all is probably our home cookin’. Whether that conjures up fond memories of Grandma’s secret recipes, big Sunday dinners, or vacation rest-stops at one-of-a-kind Mom-and-Pop spots that dish up some of the region’s finest fare, most of us consider ourselves experts at appreciating good, local, Southern-style cuisine.

It was a treat for all, then, when The Commerce Club hosted its Jeans, Jack & Baby Back event, held annually and regarded as a Member favorite during the summer.

As expected, the reservations poured in this year, as they do every year, and particularly when the menu was released in advance. (I am happy to share this with you below. Warning: May Cause Mouths to Water.)

Jeans, Jack & Baby Back

2014

Baby Back Pork Ribs with Sweet Bourbon BBQ Sauce

Carolina Style Pulled Pork with Honey Jack

Teriyaki Bourbon Grilled Chicken Wings

Smoked Beef Brisket with Jalapeno BBQ Sauce

Bacon Wrapped Tomatoes

Compressed Watermelon and Feta Salad

Cauliflower Potato Salad

Grilled Sweet Corn and Parmesan

Warm Chocolate Pecan Bread Pudding with Jack Daniels Anglaise

and

Bourbon Glazed Pound Cake with Sautéed Summer Berries

This event, which sells out each time it’s hosted by the Club, proved to be just as enticing as these selections! Food stations set up around the room, unique Jack Daniels’ cocktails (which were created, by the on-site Jack Daniels’ representatives, to marry with each), and live Blues music all added to the hospitable and warm ambience of the night.

Whether it was their first time attending the social event or fifth, Members, outfitted in their favorite blue jeans, were thrilled to “mosey” on up to the 49th floor of 191 Peachtree Tower to enjoy the fine Friday night.

Accompanied by amusing lyrics (“I need a big-legged woman – but she gots to have good credit!”) the on-site Larry Griffith’s Blues band, led by Larry himself, a Ray Charles look-alike – yes, he even wore black shades, had their toes tapping and fingers snapping until some couldn’t resist the urge to give up their seats for the dance floor. Smiles and drinks were passed around as these delightful improv dancing sessions broke out and then lasted, along with the entertainment and finger-lickin’-good food, through the night.

Feel free to contact us in order to learn more about this event, one of just many social experiences that The Commerce Club provides for its Members each month.

We’re only a phone call away, y’all!

404.222.0191

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To hear some of the entertaining tunes from the night, visit:

Larry Griffith’s Blues Band
larrygriffithmusic.com

To explore specialty Jack Daniels cocktail features, visit:
jackdaniels.com

NOTHING SAYS “AMERICA” LIKE NATIONAL HOT DOG DAY

Happy National Hot Dog Day!

Happy National Hot Dog Day!

If you weren’t in The Commerce Club’s Olympic Lounge this afternoon, then you missed out on a really unique food celebration!

Ketchup, mustard, relish, onion – there’s something for everyone on this one-of-a-kind day, celebrated each year on the 23rd of July. A part of the bigger “National Hot Dog Month,” this fun holiday is celebrated around the world (Canada, Great Britain, and Australia to name a few) and by a variety of people, young and old.

Though the Club proudly offered a bountiful buffet featuring these tasty sausages with all of their fixins’, we readily admit that we couldn’t compete with Paraguay’s 668+ footer created for their ExpoFeria in July 2011. Wherever you choose to partake of this all-American treat – here or abroad – we want you to know we join you in honoring this most special of dogs!

commerce 

References and for more interesting facts:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hot_dog_day

http://www.guinnessworldrecords.com/records-1000/longest-hot-dog/

 

WHERE WARM WELCOMES ABOUND

The Commerce Club, part of the already-impressive-and-still-growing ClubCorp network, is on mission to help each and every person who sets foot through the door to experience a   Warm Welcome, Magic Moment, and Fond Farewell.

Employee Partners Provide 100 Years of Combined Service to their Commerce Club Members and the Atlanta Community

Employee Partners Provide 100 Years of Combined Service to their Commerce Club Members and the Atlanta Community

 

 

“Ralph’s friendliness and excellent customer service are the reasons why my friends and I come to The Commerce Club Friday evenings. He always greets us with a hug and smile, and for years has taken exceptional care of me and my guests,” a Member recently shared.

 

 

Ralph, along with other staff of The Commerce Club, is an integral part of the success that the Club has experienced – and continues to experience – since its opening more than five decades ago.

The Commerce Club wishes to publicly recognize them for their diligence and excellence and for exemplifying to so many what true Southern Hospitality is all about.

For more information about the Warm Welcomes that The Commerce Club is known for providing, please call us at 404.222.0191.

THE FUTURE OF THE NEWS

The Atlanta Press Club and The Commerce Club Proudly Partner to Present:
THE FUTURE OF THE NEWS

A conversation with Margaret Sullivan, Public Editor, New York Times, and
Alex Taylor, Executive Vice President, Cox Enterprises

Moderated by Commerce Club Board of Directors’ Member and former President of CNN, Tom Johnson

To a luxurious 49th floor ballroom packed wall to wall with nearly 300 Commerce Club and Atlanta Press Club (APC) members, their guests, service staff, and camera crews, Margaret Sullivan, perched gingerly atop a riser, appeared slight. Her statements throughout the event, mostly about maintaining the integrity of the news, however, were anything but.

“Some people want to read about foreign affairs, and some people want to read about Jennifer Anniston’s baby,” proffered Sullivan, not mincing any words.

This alarming crescendo – from readers and viewers, pushing those who produce our daily news to give the general public more and more phenomenolism, at the risk of abandoning truth, the stuff fair journalism is supposed to be all about – is growing in volume.

Others who were present for the recent speaker luncheon event and who work in these same fields rallied loudly behind Sullivan, known for her direct focus on journalistic accuracy and integrity, and her flippant statement.

One, Maria Saporta, of the Atlanta Business Chronicle and SaportaReport.com, adamently agreed. “There is such a low barrier to entry into this world. Get it first, but first, get it right. There is a difference between solid journalism and all the clutter that is out there.”

This clutter, found in your inbox’s spam, vying for your attention on your social media, on billboards, in line at the supermarket check-out, was described by Alex Taylor as an interference with truth, something that the public has had no choice but to learn to live with.

“We are living in the Wild West where people don’t understand where [facts] come from. Google just can’t do that for you,” admitted Taylor. Not to be dismayed, however, he ultimately predicts the tide’s turn. “With time, people will want less static and more signal.”

That signal, that lone beacon that steadily shines, stubbornly resisting the darkness of media sensationalism, points the way for the Future of the News. Indeed, its core, the very DNA of good, sound media, has not changed. Its future, like its past, is about levereging accuracy, perspective, integrity, and balance to help make our world better. Public service has always been, and quietly still is, what news is all about.

An Editor for Georgia Public Broadcasting (GPB), which Tom Johnson, like a jolly, proud Papa, boasted has never been better, explicated the science behind it, “There’s a balance between giving the audience what they want to know and giving them what they need to know.”

No small feat to perform before an audience of consumers who, all agreed, feels a deep and growing cynicism for their sources of news.

“Different consumers want different things, and they will find it, because it’s available,” dictated Sullivan.

The problem, of course, is that all (perhaps most) of these available sources are not even remotely reliable. Reposts and retweets, which number in the millions daily, never stop to beg the question, Hey, where’d ya get your facts? They exist as much for idle amusement as they do for accuracy.

Johnson, a dinosaur in the news industry, described these faltering facts as a crisis not just for journalism but for American democracy.

“The Washington Post continues to do outstanding journalism. The New York Times and COX Enterprises – their commitment to quality is the exception in America today. [And] the type of indispensable, interrogative reporting that the Atlanta Journal Constitution is now doing is vital to the community. In my old days in Washington, there were reporters you couldn’t get away from. Atlanta has one of these,” Johnson continued, referencing Saporta. “I have tremendous admiration for her enterprise.”

But enterprise, that gritty, homegrown value which is brother to hard work, is difficult to come by these days. For one, it is seemingly far more lucrative to fabricate a story about Miley Cyrus, Justin Bieber, or Kimye (the not particularly clever name given to newlywed couple Kim Kardashian and Kanye West by the not particularly clever paparazzi) than it is to disseminate verifiable facts backed up by local, watchdog investigation.

Frankly, not everyone wants to be a Saporta.

For another, many news sources, online and off, simply fail to look at the bigger picture. They have yet to ask themselves what news means to society at large. With an audience nodding in accord, all panelists agreed that giving the American people transparency and encouraging them to make better decisions needs to trump revenue earning as top priority.

“The passion,” elaborated Sullivan, “around watchdog journalism has never been greater at our company. We’re committed to it.” In times of uncertainty and upheaval, commitment like this is remarkably invaluable. “With three [branches of government] there is still corruption,” she continued. “There has to be a fourth branch, one that watches the watchers.”

Without it, chaos, it seems, will ensue.

“Things get rampantly out of control without a good fourth estate,” acceded COX’s Taylor.

Even with that obligatory fourth estate in place, and, with it, its values of fairness, accuracy, and integrity, every one of the day’s speakers admitted that the industry has had to make adjustments and will continue to have to make adjustments in the years to come. It goes without saying that, as technology continues to evolve, the media and those who provide it must evolve as well.

Sullivan, who has been accused of editing while female, described this evolution, these necessary changes, as more than just a few minor growing pains.

“Vast upheavel. We’re going through a change like that right now. We really can’t get a handle on that. Print is in serious decline. I love the smell of ink, but the truth is, we’re not going back to that heyday. We’re all scrambling to find a way to thrive and survive.”

Thrive and survive is putting it mildly, considering she went on to concede that there will be no future print edition of the New York Times, if trends continue as they are.

Described as unusual, exciting, and scary, these times of uncertainty brought out a certain spunk in Sullivan and the others. Anything but disheartened, like David against their Goliath, they seemed more alive in the face of the challenge at hand.

Johnson, Sullivan, and Taylor, all of whom represent what is best in journalism today, never seemed to shy from their present reality. They openly discussed the importance of teaching news literacy in the classroom; using transparency as a new form of objectivity; utilizing new avenues of technology (Sullivan went so far as to rave about her affinity for Twitter, “I haven’t seen anything that’s as useful to me. What is going to have the impact of Twitter? I haven’t seen anything as dominant as that.”); and implementing strategic business models, those which specifically incorporate the idea of breaking news “bundles” into smaller, consumable pieces (referred to as a la carte pricing), as various means to an end that guarantees a future for the news.

Though heavy in its content, the conversation was closed rather light-heartedly with comments by Sullivan.

“I might have been oversold a little bit,” she joked. “I can’t say what the future of news is. I challenge anyone in the world to say what the future of news is. Everyone is trying something new. We have to be quick to try something new, quick to abandon things that don’t work. Now, consumer revenue has surpassed advertising revenue. This is heartening because it means something is working. We all want something that is working.”

We do, yes, want something that is working. We also want something that is promising. We have inspiring individuals such as these, our gatekeepers, to thank for providing us with both. The future of the news has never been brighter.

 

THE COMMERCE CLUB WOULD LIKE TO THANK
THE FOLLOWING SPONSORS FOR THIS EVENT:

The Atlanta-Journal Constitution
The Coca-Cola Company
Delta
Jackson Spalding
Tom Johnson
McKenna, Long & Aldridge
Northside Hospital
WSB-TV

The Future of the News

The Future of the News

For additional information about the Atlanta Press Club, please email
Info@atlpressclub.org

For additional information about membership at The Commerce Club, please email
Kira Hullinger at Kira.Hullinger@ourclub.com
Paul Selby at Paul.Selby@ourclub.com

 

SOCIAL SECURITY

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Guess who we spotted “hanging” around the Club this week?

Terrible puns aside, The Commerce Club is more than just a place our Members diverge to when they require their business, civic, or philanthropic needs to be met.

The Club offers a somewhat surprising number of ways to fill voids in one’s social life as well. In short, it’s a great hang-out spot! Sleek “touchdown rooms”; Singles’ events; a robust calendar boasting networking events of all varieties; and an exclusive area, the Olympic Lounge, which features splendid views (yes, the gentleman featured in the photo above is dangling a full 49 stories above Atlanta’s Ellis Street), a full-service bar, and a 103″ television screen for one’s viewing pleasure (did someone say World Cup?) are just a few of the many attributes that attract the multitudes here.

Merriam-Webster defines the word social as “relating to or involving activities in which people spend time talking to each other or doing enjoyable things with each other.”

Whether these people are your clients, your co-workers, your friends, or your family, each of us wants to stay connected. We have an insatiable desire to relate to – and to enjoy relating to –  those around us.

The Commerce Club would like to encourage each of you, socialite big or small, to utilize us for your enjoyment. We’re truly happy to fill your glass, to book your party, or to help you make that elusive connection.

Come mix and mingle with us.

You’ll find us at the corner of history and hospitality.

The Olympic Lounge, named for Atlanta, Georgia's hosting of the 1996 Summer Olympic Games.

The Olympic Lounge, named for Atlanta, Georgia’s hosting of the 1996 Summer Olympic Games.

 

 

EMPLOYEE PARTNER SPOTLIGHT: MEMBERSHIP ASSISTANT LA’KIESHA COX

“The Commerce Club is a great place for people to network and feel at home. I’ve become like family with the Members!” explains La’Kiesha Cox. “They trust and are confident that we will take care of them.

Feeling like family is just one of the many reasons that Membership Assistant Cox has so much praise to offer about her job. It will be ten years in September since she began working as a server at Atlanta’s 191 Club, which later merged with the historic Commerce Club to become the club we all know and love within the extensive ClubCorp network today. After only a year from her date of hire, Cox was promoted to the position of Membership Assistant.

“Every day is different. We are always meeting different people; there is no boring repetition,” Cox affectionately states about her current role.

The excitement still felt after nearly a decade on the job is just one of a plethora of reasons that the Membership Department is so lucky to have her. Attention to detail, a great work ethic (she just recently returned from maternity leave without missing a beat), and an organic love for the Members make this employee partner a part of the fabric of this business club.

“It’s always a good thing – knowing that our Members can depend on us,” she beams.

Our heartfelt thanks, La’Kiesha, for sincerely enjoying what you do. We love having you on our Team!

La'Kiesha Murray Cox

La’Kiesha Murray Cox

YOU GOTTA FIGHT FOR YOUR RIGHT TO (WHITE) PARTY!

 

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The sun-drenched beaches of South Florida have them, the LGBT communities have them, Calvin Klein and Sean “P. Diddy” Combs have them, and now, Atlanta’s most popular business club does, too! We’re talking about White Parties, of course, those ubiquitous social events that pop up in stunningly cool places all across the country, from Salt Lake City to New York City, and which require one to come outfitted in all or nearly all white.

Occuring year round, but especially during the warmer months of summer, these parties actually date back as far as the 1980s when they began as an interesting way to raise money and awareness for HIV/AIDS prevention.

“White stands for purity. White is elegant, non-political, non-combative and makes people look just plain beautiful,” once remarked Frank Wager, co-founder of the annual Miami White Party, one of the first of its kind.

Commerce Club Members and guests clearly agreed, having arrived befitted, bedecked, and bedazzled in the colour de jour.

Presented by financial consultant Harvey Maclin and real estate agent Victoria Strange, joint Co-Chairs of the newly formed Social Committee, the Friday night, June 27, event was a great success – trendy without being smug, a great way for Atlanta’s business community to cut loose from their nine to fives.

“This makes me feel good that our Committee, with the help of [Member Relations employees] Roxanne Vallone, Anna Chafen and staff, we are able to make this possible. With that being said, we discussed aiming for fifty [attendees] and … we exceeded that!” oozed Strange, happy that the event was such a hit with all who came out to partake of the festivities.

It didn’t hurt that the White Party was earmarked well ahead of time for success. A 49th floor view, lustrous decorations, heavy hors d’oeuvres, and music provided by NYC’s DJ Doug Blaze (“Spinning all the Best”), made for a night to be remembered well into the months to come.

Ironically, the highlight of the whole evening was of the impulse variety, such that it could not have been imagined, much less planned, any better by organizers. Guests of a formal private event next door, young South African visitors being recognized for their leadership abilities, upon hearing the trendy music, requested to leave their own party – at first shyly and then with a charming boldness – to venture into the White Party and out onto its dance floor! At least 20 young people, future leaders of their country, got to experience modish American culture first-hand.

Enticing, yes, but also fashionable and sophisticated; the night, au corant with the times, was exactly what The Commerce Club had hoped for from its Social Committee.

YOUNG EXECS CONTINUE TO MAKE THEIR MARK

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Commerce Society for Young Executives’ (CSYE) Chair-Elect Derin Dickerson, of Alston & Bird, one of America’s best corporate law firms, poses with United Way affiliate and new Club Member Aisha Harris, and Make-A-Wish Foundation’s Fabiola Charles, who also serves on the CSYE Board as Community Engagement Co-Chair.

This active group of Under 40s is a vital part of the “Clubs within a Club” infrastructure, which exists to forge connections within The Commerce Club, facilitating easier social and networking opportunities at a private club which boasts well over a thousand Members.

YOUR TURN FOR COMMENTS!

What are your thoughts about networking?

With whom would you most want to mingle at a social function geared toward young executives under age 40?

UNITED WAY AND THE COMMERCE CLUB PARTNER TO DEVELOP YOUNG PROFESSIONALS

“Why are you here?” considered P.J. Zonsius, a Commercial Account Executive of Business and Government markets for Gas South and Co-chair of United Way’s Young Professional Leaders (YPL).

Speaking to a full house of more than 80 young executives at The Commerce Club, on a balmy Tuesday evening, June 24, 2014, the question was, of course, rhetorical. “You care about this city,” Zonsius continued, “and you have the opportunity to make a difference, either through United Way or The Commerce Club.”

For many, it was less a matter of “or” and more a matter of “both,” as many of the young executives being addressed by Zonsius serve as active Members of the Club, with its under-age-40 group, the Commerce Society for Young Executives (CSYE), as well as with YPL, created in 2009 for United Way’s philanthropic donors also under age 40. Regardless of which committee they were representing during the reception, all joined in the celebration of the incoming – and recognition of the outgoing – YPL Board for their annual Service Social. The program, coordinated by Fabiola Charles, Make a Wish Foundation, and Jamar Jeffers, The Lovett School, serving as Community Engagement Co-Chairs of the CSYE, was well supported and received by all.

“United Way is near and dear to my heart,” testified Kimberly Poma, Chair, CSYE. Decked out in a red and white ensemble perfectly befitting her role as Global Ambassador for The Coca-Cola Company, Poma elaborated, “Our mission is to create business opportunities and leadership opportunities, and [we are] delighted to be at The Commerce Club, a sustainable club committed to engaging young professionals such as ourselves.”

After issuing these warm words of welcome, Poma passed the evening’s remarks on to the Club’s newest Director, Paul Selby, formerly of the Georgia Aquarium, who enthusiastically echoed these sentiments and shared many of the other perks that come with membership at a private business and civic club.

“The Commerce Club is here to help create a space to develop leaders. Our desire is to create the space for you to network and develop relationships, both personally and professionally,” affirmed Selby.

Attendees were encouraged to utilize their proximity to the Club not only to strengthen their careers but also to try to glean all that they can from those powerful CEOs who serve on its Board and who share their same philanthropic mindsets. Philanthropy, this etymological love of humanity, was highlighted, repeatedly, by all who spoke throughout the night.

Circling back to the original statements made, YPL Co-Chair Quinn Green, Associate Broker, HOUSE CONNECT, continued along this charitable path, “In this room are many of the current and future leaders of our city. We take this very seriously. We serve together.”

Expounding on these thoughts of servanthood, Green went on to state that all young people, whether they actively serve on “official” Boards and committees within the city or simply have a keen interest in their immediate surroundings or neighborhood, need to aim for a fulfilling work/life balance. A key component to obtaining that, and vital to the successful equation, is the ability to give back to one’s community.

With rounds of applause accompanied by rousing enthusiasm, the evening’s young professional leaders continued to encourage one another and build one another up to serve these communities and the city at large.

“Thank you for being here,” closed Green, “Thank you for positioning yourself to be a future leader of United Way and Atlanta.”

YPL and CS 2014

The Commerce Club, Atlanta, GA, joins United Way in welcoming the following individuals to its new YPL Board:

Teanna Alexis, AT&T
Natosha Briscoe, Wells Fargo
Dawn Churi, Sequoia Golf
Cory Croft, Accenture
Kyle Healy, Alston & Bird, LLP
Brian House, Newell Rubbermaid
Karl Jennings, Georgia State University
Melanie Jordan, Georgia Chamber of Commerce
Beth Keller, Chris Kids
Terrell Monroe, Communities in Schools of Atlanta
Michael Noneeman, McKesson