Aout U As one of the largest of 1,500 U.S. affiliates of Habitat for Humanity International, and the largest nonprofit homebuilder in Atlanta and Fulton County, Atlanta Habitat transforms neighborhoods by bringing generous donors and hardworking volunteers together with working families to build high quality, green homes. The result is dramatic, positive differences in the lives of family members and in neighborhoods.
Income qualified homebuyer families can buy affordable homes through noprofit, nointerest loans. Homebuyers complete 250 sweatequity hours and other requirements, pay for their homes and all upkeep, and maintain current payments on their properties.
The build is only the beginning of the development of strong, sustainable families and communities.
Atlanta Habitat goes beyond the build to provide support services, educational opportunities and youth programs that promote successful home purchase and ownership. Because we know that the build is only the beginning of the development of strong, sustainable families and communities, our critical home repair programs reach the wider community to the benefit of the whole neighborhood.
About 60 staff members support the efforts of more than 13,000 volunteers to raise funds, qualify homeowner applicants, build houses, provide administrative support, and much more. Outreach sessions and informational meetings educate prospective homebuyers about the qualifications and benefits of homeownership, while our extensive homebuyer education program offers a wide variety of mandatory and elective classes. With more than 30 years of experience, we know the essential ingredient that promotes success is
Atlanta Habitat is recognized as an excellent steward of donor investments, having achieved the Gold Level on GuideStar Exchange and earning the highest possible fourstar rating from Charity Navigator for eight years in a row, a distinction that only 2 percent of all nonprofits in the United States can claim.
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Core Value (/core-value)
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xecutive Team (/executive-team)
Miion & Hitor Viion An Atlanta where all people have access to quality affordable housing in safe, vibrant neighborhoods with opportunities to thrive.
Our Miion Atlanta Habitat for Humanity transforms communities by acting as a catalyst for neighborhood revitalization through education, innovative development, partnerships, and long term relationships with families.
Hitor In 1983, a group of concerned and motivated individuals in Atlanta founded a local affiliate of Habitat for Humanity to making adequate, affordable housing available to those who need it most. Atlanta Habitat is now the largest nonprofit, affordable singlefamily housing developers in the city, and is one of the largest of 1,500 affiliates of Habitat for Humanity (http://www.atlantahabitat.org/abouthabitatforhumanityinternational) in the United States.
Click here for a graphic of our timeline. (/fullpanel/upload/file/ahfh- timeline-laout-2-2015.pdf)
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Core Value (/core-value)
Core Value Our Core Value Integrity. Our reputation is our greatest asset, and our decisions and all actions must reflect that. We strive to be honest, fair, transparent, and accountable in all we do.
Safety. Every staff member and each volunteer is personally responsible for creating a safe work environment at our facility and our job sites.
Community Leadership. We are proactive about serving our homeowners and the communities where we build every day, and we strive to advance the success of affordable housing initiatives in metro Atlanta.
Careful Stewardship. We recognize that we are able to accomplish our mission only through the generosity of others. We strive to protect and leverage all resources — human, natural, and financial — to create value, exceed goals, and eliminate waste.
Excellence. We actively set and communicate high expectations for the quality of work and results we require from every staff member, homeowner, board member, and volunteer who works with Atlanta Habitat. We strive to set the bar high and challenge the status quo every day.
Teamwork. We strive to communicate well with each other, break down silos, and apply consistent standards and expectations across our organization. We treat each other with dignity, respect, and sensitivity, and we value all who work in our community.
Empowered Employees.We are intentional about creating and providing an environment in which employees are supported to do their best work.
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xecutive Team Lia Y. Gordon Preident & CO
Lisa Y. Gordon, CPA, is President and Chief Executive Officer of Atlanta Habitat for Humanity—one of the top 10 Habitat for Humanity International affiliates in the United States. She is a recognized leader in transformational redevelopment efforts for quality affordable housing and neighborhood revitalization.
Lisa joined Atlanta Habitat in July 2015 and set the nonprofit homebuilder on a new course to become a catalyst for holistic neighborhood revitalization. She developed and now guides the organization’s new fiveyear strategic plan and new vision and mission—making an annual $6 million economic impact on the city of Atlanta through new home constructions, renovations and critical repair projects. As a credit to the organization’s commitment to its refreshed mission and new leadership, Habitat for Humanity International named Atlanta Habitat a 2017 Affiliate of Distinction and the Atlanta Business Chronicle designated it as of One of the Best Places to Work in 2016.
As a leader in urban redevelopment and government service before joining Atlanta Habitat, Lisa was Vice President and Chief Operating Officer for the Atlanta BeltLine, Inc., cabinet member in former Atlanta Mayor Shirley Franklin’s administration, City Manager of East Point, GA and Assistant City Manager of Austin, Texas. Prior to these roles, she worked in county government for 10 years.
She earned an undergraduate degree from Georgetown University and holds a Master’s of Public Administration degree from the Maxwell School at Syracuse University and a Master’s of Accounting degree from Nova Southeast University. She has been a licensed Certified Public Accountant in the state of Florida since 1999.
In 2016 Lisa was inducted as a Fellow of the National Academy of Public Administration. She is an Advisory Board member of the Urban Land Institute, a member of the U.S. Council Advocacy Committee for Habitat for Humanity International, International Women’s Forum, Women’s Affordable Housing Network, Leadership Atlanta and Commercial Real Estate Women (CREW). She is the recipient of several honors and awards including the YWCA of Greater Atlanta 2017 Women of Achievement, WTS International’s Woman of the Year in Transportation, Bisnow magazine’s Top 40 most influential women in commercial real estate in 2014, and CREW (Commercial Real Estate Women) Network’s 2013 Economic Impact Award.
hari Henning Chief Development Officer
Shari Henning is Chief Development Officer and is responsible for a visionary multiyear fundraising strategy in alignment with Atlanta Habitat’s strategic plan, neighborhood revitalization focus, and its expansion to South Fulton.
With a team of development professionals, Henning manages the growth of the organization’s individual
giving and major gifts, planned giving, and capital campaigns in addition to guiding sponsorship, foundation and government grants, inkind donations, special events, product sales and other giving programs. Prior to joining Atlanta Habitat in February 2018, Shari was Executive Vice President for the South Atlantic Division of the American Cancer Society. She was the division’s seniormost staff executive, driving development and implementation of the Society’s mission and income strategies across the division, while engaging corporate executives, highlevel donors, and leadership volunteers in furthering the fight against cancer.
Shari started her nonprofit career at the Society in fundraising in 1998. During this time, she developed extensive leadership experience and expertise in building highlevel relationships with staff, volunteers, and corporate and civic organizations.
Shari has an accounting degree from Rockford University and began her career as a senior staff accountant for Rockford Memorial Hospital, a major health system in northern Illinois. However, after feeling the need for deeper fulfillment and a personal passion, she left after a few years to join the American Cancer Society. Shari and her husband live in Atlanta.
Dan Maddox Jr. xecutive Vice Preident & COO
Dan Maddox Jr. came to Atlanta Habitat in February 2012 following a 27year career at GeorgiaPacific Corporation (GP). Prior to joining our organization, Maddox was vice president, GP Harmon International, Rolls Division, India Business. He also served at Arthur Andersen and Company (Accenture) as senior manager in the Consulting Division.
As Executive Vice President & COO, Maddox sets goals, implements strategic plans, and maintains fiscal oversight of seven groups within the organization: Family Services, Construction, Real Estate, Site Planning and Design, Staff Development, Warehouse, and Restore. His responsibilities also include oversight of safety, facilities, and information technology for the entire organization. With extensive experience in marketing, logistics, and technology utilization, Maddox is recognized for his ability to lead and motivate in costconscious, changing environments.
Maddox holds a B.S. in Business Administration from Illinois State University and an Executive MBA from the University of Michigan. He has served on the board of directors of Atlanta Habitat as both treasurer and board chair and has been a member of Atlanta Habitat’s Advisory Council.
Joe Leard Vice Preident & Chief Financial Officer
Joe Lessard, as the Vice President & Chief Financial Officer, Joe brings 24 years of diverse financial knowledge to Atlanta Habitat and is responsible for all aspects of the fiscal functions of the organization ranging from insurance, banking, mortgage services and accounting as well as annual budgeting and longterm strategic planning from a financial perspective. With extensive experience in financial analysis, strategic planning, and operational finance functions, he clearly recognizes finance’s role in partnering with the entire organization to successfully achieve the mission at Atlanta Habitat.
He joined Atlanta Habitat in October 2014 following a 12year career at Reed Construction Data in Norcross, GA where he served as the senior director of financial planning and analysis for North America.
Joe began his career at Sikorsky Aircraft in Stratford, CT, holding several key finance positions in his eightyear tenure prior to relocating to Georgia in 1998. He holds a bachelor of science in finance from Old Dominion University in Norfolk,
VA, and an MBA from Sacred Heart University in Fairfield, CT. An avid sports enthusiast, Lessard has been active as a volunteer soccer coach in Forsyth County since 2005.
rett A. teele Vice Preident & Chief Legal Officer
Brett Steele, Vice President & Chief Legal Officer, leads legal affairs for Atlanta Habitat. His career includes serving as the Associate General Counsel and Chief Compliance Officer for eight years at Beazer Homes where he was responsible for the legal affairs across the company, including litigation management, HR/employment, and ethics training and compliance. Brett was also inhouse counsel at General Electric Energy and Siemens Energy & Automation and an attorney with King & Spalding in Atlanta.
Brett received his undergraduate degree from Huntingdon College and completed his legal education at Mercer University’s Walter F. George School of Law, where he graduated cum laude and served on the Moot Court Board and as EditorInChief of the Mercer Law Review. After graduating law school, Mr. Steele completed a twoyear clerkship with the Honorable Hugh Lawson, Chief Judge of the U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Georgia.
Jill trickland Lue Vice Preident of Communication
Jill Strickland Luse joined Atlanta Habitat in August 2016 as Vice President of Communications. She leads a communications team in developing and implementing communications strategies that effectively share the Atlanta Habitat story through media relations, social media, marketing, and other channels.
As a communications leader for nearly 20 years, Jill has provided communications counsel and services to the Csuite, elected officials, local governments and nonprofit organizations. Prior to joining Atlanta Habitat, she served as Executive Director of Communications & Public Engagement for Atlanta Public Schools and was a communications strategist for corporate communications initiatives.
Jill’s career has also included owning and managing J. Strickland Communications Co., an integrated marketing
communications firm focused on enhancing a client’s brand awareness and stakeholder engagement for clients including The CocaCola Company, Shaw Environmental & Infrastructure Group, Invest Atlanta and the Metro
Atlanta Chamber of Commerce. She was also the Pennsylvania state press secretary for the GoreLieberman Presidential Campaign. Her work has also included leading crisis communications strategies for countless organizations and public figures.
She has provided communications counsel as a volunteer on several boards of directors including Communities in Schools of Atlanta and The National NAMES Project.
Early in her career, Jill was an awardwinning broadcast news journalist in Huntsville, Alabama and Atlanta. She earned her Bachelor of Journalism degree from the Henry W. Grady College of Journalism and Mass Communication at the University of Georgia. She was born and raised in Atlanta and her husband and she have one daughter.
Wele rook Vice Preident of Houing and Neighorhood ngagement
Wesley Brooks is Vice President of Housing and Neighborhood Engagement and leads the organization’s new department that focuses on housing development, strategic policy and neighborhood engagement.
Before coming to Atlanta Habitat in June 2017, Wesley served as
manager of Housing and Policy for the Georgia Department of Community Affairs.
As a leader in affordable housing across Georgia, Wesley was invested in the development and preservation of affordable housing along the full spectrum of housing needs throughout the state. From the coordination of supportive services and housing for Georgia’s homeless population and the integration of state supportive housing into thriving communities, to the development of programs—providing relief to underwater homes in our cities. Wesley also led the Housing Outreach Coordinators for the Community Affairs department— connecting Georgians to housing throughout the state and training communities to realize their housing visions through the Georgia Initiative for Community Housing.
Prior to his work with the State of Georgia, Wesley served as the program manager for the Green and Healthy Homes Initiative in Atlanta, a Senior Policy Analyst for the Office of Sustainability in New Haven, Connecticut, and as an Architectural Designer in Chesapeake, Virginia.
Wesley earned a Bachelor of Architecture at Hampton University and holds a Master of City and Regional Planning from Georgia Institute of Technology. He is a reservist in the US Army Corps of Engineers and a veteran of Operation Iraqi Freedom.
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Atlanta Habitat for Humanity transforms communities by acting as a catalyst for neighborhood revitalization through education, innovative development, partnerships, and long-term relationships with families.
Frequentl Aked Quetion
1.) Doe Atlanta Haitat give home awa?
No. Atlanta Habitat provides qualifying families the opportunity to purchase affordable homes.
2.) What ize are Atlanta Haitat home?
Homes are 3 bedroom/ 2 bath houses or 4 bedroom/ 2 bath houses.
3.) What i the interet rate on a home?
Homeowners pay NO interest on their mortgages, saving them an average of $125,000 over the life of their mortgage.
4.) I an Atlanta Haitat home energ-efficient?
Yes! Atlanta Habitat homes are constructed using green building standards, producing energy efficient homes that protect the environment and reduce utility bills.
5.) How doe Atlanta Haitat pa for contruction cot?
Atlanta Habitat relies on the support of sponsors, donors, and volunteers to help build homes, saving the homebuyer an average of $40,000 in labor and materials.
6.) Who are the houe ponor?
Corporations, faithbased organizations, foundations, and individuals partner to sponsor homes financially and provide volunteers.
7.) How often doe Atlanta Haitat uild home?
Five to ten houses are under construction at any given time. We build 4050 homes annually.
8.) How man home ha Atlanta Haitat uilt?
Since 1983, Atlanta Habitat has built and renovated more than 1,370 homes primarily in the city of Atlanta and Fulton County, housing over 5,500 individual family members.
9.) Can anone ecome an Atlanta Haitat homeuer?
Atlanta Habitat homes are for firsttime homebuyers who meet specific qualifications to ensure success.
10.) What i expected of a homeuer once approved?
Homebuyers are expected to invest 250 sweatequity hours in building his/her home and others, make an affordable down payment, lease the home for the first year, make timely payments during the lease period and attend at least 12 homeowner education classes.
11.) How much i a mortgage pament?
Monthly mortgage payments typically average less than $650 and include escrow for taxes, insurance, a termite bond and a maintenance savings fund.
12.) Doe Atlanta Haitat renovate exiting home?
Yes, we sometimes do renovate existing homes. However, we first do a thorough investigation and assessment to ensure that any home selected for renovation can meet the same quality and greenbuilding standards that we follow with new builds. Air quality, sustainability and energyefficiency are as important in our renovated homes as they are in newly constructed houses.
13.) I the Retore onl open for Atlanta Haitat homeowner?
No. The ReStore is open to the public Monday – Saturday from 10:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m.
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