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Board of directors


Corliss White | Board Chair | Retired

Corliss, a native of Atlanta, is a graduate of the University of Georgia and has a BA degree in Journalism. Corliss retired from the United States Postal Service after a career that spanned 32 years. She served as Postmaster from 2001 to until 2015, becoming the first African American female in that position in three cities. She currently spends her time volunteering in several community initiatives. She is an active member of the Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, and has served on the Board of Directors for Ivy and Roses Community Fund, Inc.


Jonathan Haynes | Treasurer | Audit Manager at Smith & Howard

Jonathan is an experienced Certified Public Accountant with more than 12 years of experience in public accounting. Jonathan is currently an audit manager at Smith and Howard P.C. and specializes in non-profits including government compliance audits. Jonathan lives in East Point and looks for ways to get involved in the community to make a difference. In his free time, Jonathan enjoys bicycling and spending time with his two dogs and sweetheart Jasmin.


Rodney Edge Sr. | Secretary | Musician with Edge Muzik Inc 

Rodney is a musician, songwriter, producer and entrepreneur with an MBA. He served for several years as an employee and community ambassador for the homeless and those with mental health diagnosis with United Way of Greater Atlanta and Georgia Works! His musical resume is impressive as he has worked with several jazz, gospel and R&B artists such as Luther Barnes, Kelly Price, Ronnie Laws, Ken Ford, Rick Braun, Paul Taylor and Marion Meadows, and serves as musical director for Atlanta’s nationally ranked Suite Jazz Series. Some of Rodney’s major accomplishments include co-writing the certified gold single “It’s Working” with Bishop William Murphy, and serving as keyboardist with Anita Baker.


Michael Giddens | Executive Director of North Georgia Works

Michael is a seasoned social services executive and is currently Executive Director of Four Wind a non-profit that serves vulnerable and low-income populations. Michael has spent over a decade as an executive and consultant with large nonprofit organizations serving individuals experiencing homelessness. He has previously served as Vice President of Georgia Works! And COO of SafeHouse outreach. Michael is an ordained Pastor and, is a graduate of Samford University with a BA degree in in Public Administration. He married his high school sweetheart Elizabeth and together they have two kids, a daughter Wryeton and a son Kyler.


Lambert Bales | Educator at Cobb County Schools

After a 30-year career in corporate America, Lambert decided to become an educator because of his desire to make a difference in the lives of others. He is currently employed by the Cobb County School District as a 5th-grade teacher. He attended Stillman College, Tuskegee University, and Liberty University and holds a Bachelors of Science Degree in Biology and Chemistry and a Masters of Education in Curriculum and Instruction in Elementary Education. Lambert is involved in numerous community affiliations and is a member of Kappa Alpha Psi Fraternity, Inc and Kappa Delta Pi International Honor Society in Education. His favorite biblical quote is" I am the Lord, the God of all mankind, is there anything too hard for me?" (Jeremiah 32:27)


Teresa Watson | Owner of TRJ Trucking

Teresa Watson is the owner of TRJ Transportation Inc. and a third-generation driver.  At an early age, she worked alongside her Dad performing administrative tasks in the field. As an adult Teresa was a Court Reporter for the Federal Government but often helped with the family business. Her vision to start her own trucking company began after the untimely death of her father Olin Watson Sr. Mr. Watson had been a truck driver for over 30 years, and always wanted to own his own trucking company. TRJ Transportation was restructured to hires military drivers after finding out that recently deployed soldiers often return home jobless. ESGR (Employer Support of the Guard and Reserve) invited Teresa to the Pentagon where TRJ was recognized as one of the 29 leading employers from around the country who displayed their  continued dedication to our nation's heroes.  Teresa is extremely proud of what she has built along with the outstanding reputation in the industry, and an overwhelming rich history of professionalism and leadership  

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Mary Ellen Gomes, MSW

Mary Ellen Gomes is a social worker with a long history of working in the trenched with children and families from all socio-economic levels and ethnic backgrounds.  Originally from the small town of Rochester, near Cape Cod, Massachusetts, she moved to Atlanta, Georgia in 1991. In her early years as a social worker, she worked extensively providing case management and counseling in various disciplines including criminal justice, health care, and protective services systems. After relocating to Georgia, she was hired by Big Brothers Big Sisters of Atlanta, and it was there that she developed her love and passion for mentoring. Preceding her tenure with Big Brothers Big Sisters, she worked for Catholic Charities, an agency that served pregnant and parenting teens and women. She later became and Adjunct Professor with DeVry University, and was later elevated to Visiting Professor. Her areas of instruction were Sociology, Marriage and Family, Communication in the Workplace and Cultural Diversity.  Her academic qualifications include an Associate's degree in Law Enforcement from Bristol Community College and a Bachelor's from the University of Massachusetts in Multidisciplinary Studies. In 2002, she completed her graduate work in Social Work at Georgia State University.

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