Atlanta Dream’s mission is to inspire, educate and empower in an effort to affect change by building a positive legacy on the following four pillars of:
Health & Wellness, Education, Diversity & Inclusion and Inspiring Women.
2017 Inspiring Women
August 26, 2017 – Mary Parker
President and CEO of All-N-1 Security Services. Mary founded All-N-One Security in 2001 and has grown it into a multi-million dollar security company with over 200 employees. Parker also founded the Mary Parker Foundation to provide the tools, support and resources necessary for youth and young adults to succeed. Her work in security has earned her several awards, including the 2014 KLEAN Collar Spirit of Excellence in Entrepreneurship Award and the 2012 National Women Business Enterprise STAR Award.
August 23, 2017 – Sharmen Gowens
Sharmen Gowens is the CEO of the YWCA of Greater Atlanta. Gowens briefly served as interim CEO for the YWCA before being named CEO in 2015. As CEO, Gowens oversees all YWCA programs, leads the staff and volunteers and is responsible for raising the visibility of the YWCA in the community. Her work with the YWCA and their Georgia Women’s Policy Institute has won several awards for its mission to train women in leadership, advocacy and civic engagement.
August 15, 2017 – Kari Love
Kari Brown Love is CEO for the Atlanta Women’s Foundation. Love joined the Atlanta Women’s Foundation three years ago, continuing her 23-year career as a leader in the Atlanta nonprofit community, including senior positions with the Make-A-Wish Foundation and Starlight Starbright Children’s Foundation of Atlanta. In three years, through effective establishment and cultivation of corporate and individual donor relationships, Love has increased revenue by 90%. An Atlanta native, Kari is a graduate of the University of Georgia. She is a member of the Lutheran Church of the Redeemer, where she serves on the Congregation Council, and is a liaison to the church’s Children’s and Family Ministry Board.
August 11, 2017 – Dana Barrett
Dana Barrett is the host of the Dana Barrett Show, business commentator, social critic, actress and owner of DB Media, LLC. Before owning DB Media, LLC, she also owned the tech firm DB Consulting and a bookstore in Roswell, Georgia called Coffee Buy the Book. Her work on the Dana Barrett Show was awarded a 2016 GABBY Merit Award by the Georgia Association of Broadcasters for Best Locally Produced Program. In 2017, she was recognized by the SBA as a Small Business Media Advocate and by the Technology Association of Georgia as Diversity Game Changer.
August 8, 2017 – Lisa Gordon
Lisa Gordon is the CEO and President of the Atlanta Habitat for Humanity. She previously served as Vice President and COO for Atlanta Beltline, Inc. In 2013, Women’s Transportation Seminar named her Woman of the Year in Transportation. In 2014, Bisnow magazine recognized her as one of the Top 40 Women in Commercial Real Estate. Since joining the Atlanta Habitat in 2015, Lisa has set the nonprofit homebuilder on a new course to become a catalyst for holistic neighborhood revitalization. She developed and now guides the Habitat’s five-year plan and new vision and mission of making an annual $6 million economic impact on the city of Atlanta through new home constructions, renovations and critical repair projects.
July 30, 2017 – Women of OnBoard
The Dream recognized three recent graduates of the Board Development Group of OnBoard. Jane Elliott is the EVP and Chief Administrative Officer of Global Payments, Inc., Michele Sar-key-shin leads a $100 million business at Maritz, and Veronica Sheehan is a Partner at Valor Ventures, Georgia’s first female-led venture capital firm.
July 28, 2017 – Erika Shields
Erika Shields, the Chief of the City of Atlanta Police Department, has a Bachelor of Arts in International Studies from Webster University and a Master’s in Criminal Justice from Saint Leo University. She joined the Atlanta PD in 1995. In January 2010, Shields was appointed to the rank of Major, assuming the role of Chief of Staff. In 2011, She was appointed to the rank of Deputy Chief and selected to command the new Strategy and Special Projects Division. She served as the Deputy Chief of Field Operations before becoming Chief of the Atlanta Police Department.
July 25, 2017 – Jasmine Jenkins
Jasmine Jenkins is the Athletic Director for the Boys and Girls Clubs of Lanier. Born a Gainesville, Ga native, Jasmine spent her time playing basketball at East Hall High School, where she was fortunate enough to receive a full athletic scholarship to play at Vanderbilt University. She was a four-year letterwinner (2012-16), and graduated with a Bachelor’s in Human and Organizational Development and Leadership and Organizational Effectiveness. She currently serves the youth of Gainesville as the Athletic Director with the Boys & Girls Clubs of Lanier.
July 18, 2017 – Mackenzie Brannon
Mackenzie Brannon is an 8th grader at Fort Benning, Georgia. Mackenzie was diagnosed with Acute Myeloid Leukemia on September 2016. She had four rounds of intensive chemotherapy immediately following the diagnosis and is currently in remission. She started following the Dream after receiving smile-a-grams from Dream players and staff while still in the hospital battling the disease. Mackenzie loves to hang out with her friends and is very active. She loves to play sports, especially basketball and was cleared to resume all activities at the end of May.
July 9, 2017 – Sheri Riley
Sheri Riley is an Empowerment Speaker, Life Strategist and Author. Her book, Exponential Living – Stop Spending 100% of your Time on 10% of Who You Are is the guide to helping high achievers integrate their personal desires with their professional achievement. She works with celebrities, athletes, entrepreneurs, corporate executives and all around busy individuals to make choices that lead to less stress, better clarity and a more fulfilling life. Before that, she spent 20 years creating innovative marketing strategies for some of the world’s biggest celebrities and corporations including Usher, TLC, Toni Braxton and the NBA. She has been a keynote speaker at Steve Harvey’s Act Like a Success Conference, the Coca-Cola Company, Delta Airlines and the NBA Wives Behind the Beach Conference while still finding time to be a devoted wife, mother and daughter.
July 7, 2017 – Tamika Catchings
Tamika Catchings is a recently retired WNBA player. Catchings played her entire 15-year career with the Indiana Fever where she won a championship, a Finals MVP award, a regular-season MVP award, five Defensive Player of the Year Awards, WNBA Rookie of the Year award and played on ten WNBA All-Star teams. During her legendary career, she also helped Team USA to four Olympic gold medals. In addition to all her success on the court, Catchings has also proven to be a leader off it. Her Catch the Stars Foundation has promoted literacy and staying healthy for almost 15 years, and she was the first female recipient of the National Civil Rights Museum Sports Legacy Award. She was inducted into the Indiana Basketball Hall of Fame in 2015 and had her jersey retired by the Fever earlier this year.
July 2, 2017 – Lorraine Thomas
Lorraine Thomas is the CEO and founder of Destiny’s Daughters of Promise. A professional speaker, author and workshop facilitator, Thomas started Destiny’s Daughters of Promise to help teens discover their purpose and develop the skills necessary to prepare them for college and careers. She has nearly 20 years of experience speaking to diverse audiences at conferences, retreats, schools and other community organizations. She is zealous about helping young women reach their full potential, build resilience and make healthy choices and uses her Master’s Degree in Education to fully equip middle and high school girls with leadership and life skills not addressed in public school curriculum. She has been featured in news articles, magazines and on TV and radio interviews.
June 30, 2017 – Lady Chi’Ira Oliver
Lady Chi’Ira Oliver is the leader of Women of Worship ministry at Elizabeth Baptist Church. Lady Oliver has transformed the WOW ministry into one the largest and most impactful ministries within the Church. She has made it her passion to empower, renew, and change women lives. To empower women, Lady Oliver has offered practical seminars focusing on self-defense, fitness, and health & wellness. She has a great passion to serve women, but her most important ministry is her family, which includes her husband Dr. Craig Oliver and their three children.
June 23, 2017 – Nzinga Shaw
Nzinga Shaw is the Chief Diversity & Inclusion Officer of the Atlanta Hawks & Philips Arena. She is the first person to hold this position in the National Basketball Association. She is responsible for developing and embedding diversity and inclusion best practices throughout the organization. Shaw is also on the Board of Directors of the National Black Public Relations Society and the Georgia Diversity Council. She is an alumna of Spelman College, the University of Pennsylvania, and was a study abroad scholar at Oxford University in the United Kingdom.
May 31, 2017 – Elizabeth Whitmore
Elizabeth Whitmore has served as a voice for Atlanta’s Westside since she began attending Clark Atlanta University in 2008, first as Morehouse College’s Lifeguard and then as a marketing executive for the Atlanta Ballet. Following her graduation, she began to shed light on the plight of the Westside by utilizing local news stations to raise awareness to the area. She continues to devote her time and energies to bettering this Atlanta community.
May 27, 2017 – Sarah-Elizabeth Reed
The First Lady of Atlanta, Sarah-Elizabeth Reed is a community leader and role model for women. She serves on several boards, including the Children’s Museum of Atlanta, Georgia Early Education Alliance for Ready Students, and the Motherless Daughters Foundation. Most recently, Reed was named to the Georgia Board of Regents by Governor Nathan Deal and recognized among the 2016 Women of Achievement by Greater Atlanta YWCA.
May 21, 2017 – Lindsay Caufield
Lindsay Caulfield is the Senior Vice President for Public Affairs and Marketing with Grady Health System. Named a Corporate Marketer of the Year by the Atlanta Chapter of the American Marketing Association, Lindsay has made it her goal to humanize Grady since her hiring in 2012. Her work showcasing the staff of Grady while leading the “I Wouldn’t Be Here Without Grady” patient stories have highlighted just how important Grady is to Atlanta and the Southeast.