Atlanta’s Park over GA400 Announces Formation of Nonprofit Board
Thursday, February 8th, 2018
Jim Durrett, executive director of Buckhead Community Improvement District, announced the formation of a nonprofit board that will oversee the next phases of planning, funding and development for Atlanta’s award-winning Park over GA400.
The board includes a distinguished group of Atlanta’s prominent business professionals from a broad range of backgrounds, including engineering, finance, fundraising, public relations, transit management, legal and retailing. Although the group's backgrounds are varied, its members share a passion for creating a world-renowned park in the center of Buckhead’s commercial core. The board members include:
Barbara Kaufman Fleming, CPA, CEO, BBK Enterprises and Atlanta’s Park over GA400 Board Chair - Kaufman, who will chair the nonprofit board, is the owner of BBK Enterprises, Inc., a consulting business. She has excelled in business ownership, accounting, public relations, finance, media and community leadership. She is a co-founder of Chapter 11* The Discount Bookstore, a chain of discount bookstores in Georgia and served as its president and CEO from 1990 to 2002, and she has been a director of Omni Financial Services, Inc. since 2003. Kaufman served on the Board of Directors of MARTA (Metropolitan Atlanta Rapid Transit Authority) and Georgia State University and served as a director of Omni National Bank. She is a member of Georgia State University's Board of Advisors.
Jim Bacchetta, Vice President and Division Manager, Highwoods Properties – Bacchetta is a 30-year commercial and industrial real estate veteran. In his role at Highwoods Properties, Bacchetta is directly responsible for the Atlanta division’s leasing, acquisitions, development, construction and property management. Prior to joining Highwoods in 2006, Bacchetta was a private investor in industrial properties in Atlanta, and he owned and operated a national trucking company. Bacchetta’s real estate experience includes an extensive national background in various sectors of real estate including office, industrial, multi-family, resort and senior housing. He started his career in Atlanta as a certified public accountant with Price Waterhouse, and Consolidated Resources and Anderson Properties. He is an active member of NAIOP and ULI.
Mark Hennessy, Co-Owner, Hennessy Automobile Company – Hennessy, along with brothers Stephen and Peter, owns and operates Atlanta-based Hennessy Automobile Companies, the largest privately-held automobile dealer in the state of Georgia. Hennessy Auto operates dealerships which sell some of the world’s best known brands, including Buick, Cadillac, Ford, GMC, Honda, Jaguar, Land Rover, Lexus, Lincoln, Mazda and Porsche. Hennessy has served on the boards of many metropolitan agencies, including Fort Mac Planning Local Redevelopment Authority and North Fulton Community Improvement District.
Maxine Hicks, Partner, DLA Piper - Hicks is a partner and head of the Atlanta real estate practice at DLA Piper, the third-largest law firm in the world with offices in more than 40 countries. She focuses her practice on real estate development with a particular emphasis on large mixed-use, transit-oriented developments, including destinations for stadiums, entertainment, hospitality, club and resort projects. Hicks advises developers, owners and healthcare providers on real estate issues associated with medical office buildings, ambulatory surgery centers, long-term acute care hospitals and hospital campus projects. She has extensive experience in real estate property acquisition, development and leasing, planned communities, distressed assets, state and federal regulation of real estate property, mixed-use community governance and public-private partnerships. She also assists clients with site selection, zoning compliance, contract negotiation, acquisition, construction, property management and lease negotiations.
Theia Smith, Founding Executive Director, City of Atlanta’s Women’s Entrepreneurship Initiative - Smith, who was appointed to her position by Atlanta Mayor Kasim Reed, leads the nation’s only city-funded initiative to conceptualize, design and execute a solution to equalize opportunities for women business owners in Atlanta. She champions equal access to economic self-sufficiency for women and girls, particularly those whose talent is often overlooked and under-sourced. Smith was named one of Atlanta’s “40 Under 40” by the Atlanta Business Chronicle, one of Inc. Magazine’s “17 inspiring Women to Watch in 2017,”, featured as a “2017 Superwoman” by Atlanta Tribune Magazine and one of “13 Successful Spelman Alumnae to Watch” by Walker’s Legacy.
Jerry C. (Jay) Wolverton, Jr. PE, CEO, Wolverton & Associates - Wolverton founded Wolverton & Associates in 1989 with the vision of creating a regional, multi-discipline engineering firm providing high quality design to clients. He is a licensed Professional Engineer in 32 states with a focus on design and construction of commercial, office, industrial and residential projects. His professional affiliations include the American Council of Engineering Companies, the American Society of Civil Engineers, the Council for Quality Growth and the Gwinnett Chamber of Commerce. Wolverton is a champion for growth and development across the metro Atlanta region and the state of Georgia.
"I am honored that these incredibly talented Atlanta professionals are lending their expertise to the board that will oversee the development of Atlanta’s Park over GA400," said Durrett. "Public-private partnerships are at the heart of the greatest urban transformations in the U.S., and Atlanta’s Park over GA400 will continue this proud tradition beginning with this board," he added.
The yet-to-be-formally-named nonprofit board will begin to meet on next steps to turn the award-winning concept designs into a reality in five years. The board, whose first full meeting will be later this month, also will work with the recently announced volunteer Steering Committee, which will serve as an advisory group to the Park’s project leadership during the planning and fundraising phase.
The yet-to-be-named “Atlanta’s Park over GA400” will create nine acres of elevated green space in Buckhead, which currently has the least amount of public park space per capita in the city of Atlanta. Located at the remarkable confluence of Georgia 400, Peachtree Road, PATH400 and the MARTA redline, the park will provide vast and unique regional connectivity. The new park will be a crucial link and destination on the soon-to-be-completed PATH400, a 5.2-mile greenway currently under construction. Designed by ROGERS PARTNERS Architects+Urban Designers with Nelson Byrd Woltz Landscape Architects, the park has already won several awards.