Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms Communicates Commitment to Affordable Atlanta, Apartment Acquisition by Westside Future Fund

Staff Report From Metro Atlanta CEO

Monday, February 5th, 2018

On a barely above freezing Friday morning, a small crowd of media, officials, and community gathered outside worn-down buildings in English Avenue. Exactly 30 days since taking her oath of office, Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms communicated to both "Legacy" Westside community residents and her larger-Atlanta citizen audience that the 35-unit apartment buildings behind her were a physical testimony to her commitment to them.  Atlanta's 60th Mayor enjoined and urged the Atlanta people to continue to believe in an Atlanta that could remain affordable for all.

In a flurry of announcements and events since taking office, Mayor Lance Bottoms has: applauded Atlantans for being on the short list for Amazon's new headquarters; announced with Governor Deal the success of the North American headquarter relocation of multinational auto and bike company Groupe PSA to Atlanta; committed to a blueprint for ending human/sex trafficking in Atlanta with Hartsfield-Jackson Airport officials marking Human Trafficking Awareness Month; announced the Women Entrepreneur Initiative 2018-2019 cohorts; proposed legislation to end the city's cash bond system; and attended the  U.S. Conference of Mayors in Washington, D.C.

A key phrase used in variations by the Mayor throughout her communications:  working together with all.

Dressed in a bright, cardinal red London fog-styled coat/skirt and black hose and boots, with her signature short, sharp bob, Lance Bottoms' remarks remained focused on her personal connection to the English Avenue community since the time she was a young girl taking dance lessons at JFK Middle School.

The Mayor's approach was personal and accessible throughout the morning. Her staff personally greeted media before the news conference-community event, politely asking for any questions in advance for the Mayor to address.  The Mayor herself moved from the raised speakers platform down to the area of the media cameras to address specific questions by the media.  She then made her way into the small sea of community members, personally answering the pleas of women who had come to seek support with their landlords.

Her time in office just beginning, Mayor Lance Bottoms has already communicated the global importance of Atlanta and her intention for Atlanta's Westside communities to be included in that future. She is choosing to communicate with actions, results -- and her own presence.

She is acknowledging those before her and those around her, while articulating and intimating her unique role and positions.

Communicating the long-standing residents of English Avenue as "Legacy" residents, Mayor Lance Bottoms is positioned as Atlanta's 60th mayor to establish a legacy.

The future of Atlanta's Westside communities-- and other on-looking communities -- is in her hands.

So is the future of Atlanta's community and public engagement.