#WhyWednesday: Victoria Witherington

At a YPL event, Victoria Witherington saw firsthand the impact of United Way — and she stepped up to do her part. Hear why Victoria gives back to her community as a United Way Young Professional Leaders advisory board member!

United Way of Greater Atlanta’s Young Professional Leaders turn their influence into impact in our communities. Through their signature cause, United Way’s Kids Home Initiative, YPL members are helping families across Greater Atlanta become financially stable and have access to brighter futures. Click here to become a member!

On January 24, 2019, we were pleased to celebrate the new year by welcoming our new Tocqueville Society members. Thank you to all who attended!

United Way of Greater Atlanta’s Tocqueville Society, the largest Tocqueville Society in the United States, is a committed leadership group making a measurable and sustainable impact on Child Well-Being in Greater Atlanta through the connected efforts of their philanthropy. The Tocqueville Society is open to individuals who contribute $10,000 or more annually to United Way of Greater Atlanta.

For more information, please email tocqueville@unitedwayatlanta.org.

#WhyWednesday: Khadijah Ameen

Why is Khadijah Ameen involved in her community? Because representation matters. Today, hear how this United Way VIP grad and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Presidential Management Fellow takes action for Atlanta’s underrepresented communities.

Are you ready to be an advocate for your community? United Way VIP board training can help you bring your community service skills to the next level. Applications are now open for the spring 2019 VIP session!

African-American Partnership Champion, Chris Womack
Executive Vice President and President of External Affairs, Southern Company

Chris joined Southern Company in 1988 and has held a number of leadership posts within Southern Company. Chris is an active civic leader in our community serving in leadership positions with many organizations including the Atlanta Convention and Visitors Bureau, the East Lake Foundation and the National Center for Civic and Human Rights.

AAP: Tell us about your role at  Southern Company and how you impact the company’s strategic goals.
Chris: As executive vice president and president of external affairs, I am responsible for the company’s public policy strategies, federal and state governmental and regulatory affairs, corporate communication initiatives and other external engagements.

I work with my teams to shape national energy policy that goes beyond building a better business. We are constantly developing innovative programs and leveraging strategic partnerships to meet Southern Company’s goal – to build the future of energy.

AAP: What are your suggestions for individuals who are interested in a career in energy?
Chris: It’s an exciting time to be a part of the energy industry. With advancing technologies, an evolving regulatory environment and shifting customer preferences., those wanting to work in energy must be excited about the future of the business and the opportunity to deliver solutions.

The rapid evolution of the industry means you’re always learning and growing, no matter which part of the business you work in. It is important to stay up to date on industry trends as the business and expectations of customers continuously changes.

AAP: How long have you been involved with the African-American Partnership?
Chris: I moved to Atlanta some 20 years ago. Once I relocated here, I have been involved and contributing to the United Way since that time. Giving has always been important to me. I’ve been excited since the being a giver.

AAP: Why did you join the African-American Partnership?
Chris: I think it is very important for us to give back and help others. Because of all the wonderful blessings that we have received, it’s important to share. So with the good work that flows through the United Way, it was a wonderful platform to engage and help others.

AAP: AAP is building libraries where youth play and learn, what is your favorite book and why?
Chris: My favorite book is Make Your Bed by William H. McRaven. Making my bed is something my grandmother always challenged me to do. In the book, McRaven shares the ten lessons he learned from overcoming the trials of Navy SEAL training. The ten lessons shared are equally important in dealing with the challenges of life — no matter who you are.



Everyone needs to have a plan. 

Now is the time to put your new year’s resolutions into action. Make or review your will and plans. Maybe your family has experienced a life changing event that will impact your plans, such as a birth, a death, a divorce, retirement or business changes. These changes all need to be considered as decisions are made. Let United Way of Greater Atlanta help.

You can also help our Greater Atlanta community and sustain your impact by including a gift in your will to United Way. This allows you to further our mission without drawing on your current resources. Making or updating your will and including a gift to United Way of Greater Atlanta is easier than you might imagine. It can be as simple as including a sentence in your will or living trust naming United Way with an amount or percentage. You might also schedule time with an estate planning attorney or use FreeWill.  

We’ve partnered with FreeWill to give you a free, intuitive way to write your will today. Click here to start writing your will at no cost to you. This tool is free to you — whether you choose to include a gift to United Way of Greater Atlanta or not — and can be used to create your full legal will, for free, or begin your plans before seeing an attorney. Remember, a will is not for us but for the ones we love.

For more information on including United Way in your will, request your free copy of Leaving Your Legacy: A Guide to Planning Your Will and Trust. Please contact: Eve Powell at 404-527-7215 or epowell@unitedwayatlanta.org.

You can also go to our website for more details: www.unitedwayatlanta.org/group/legacy-leaders. 

Erika Ford Preval is a leading source for modern and approachable events in etiquette and lifestyle for youth and adults. As Founder of Charm Etiquette, she has delivered expert advice that has improved the social skills and enhanced both the personal and professional lives of guests – from Fortune 100 companies to scholar athletes attending top universities.

While the ideals of leadership, lifestyle, and proper etiquette are a major focus, Erika also strives to foster a sense of community by hosting curated small group events within partner restaurant locations throughout Atlanta. Known for making it “cool to be cordial” her teaching methods are anything but stuffy and rigid – they’re relevant, fun and memorable experiences. After attending Charm events, guests are confident in navigating among any group of people – whether attending a State Dinner at the White House or a casual dinner at Waffle House.

Erika also shares her modern spin on manners through her blog, Erika Preval: simply put and as a contributing writer for Southern Living. She has become a credible “go-to” resource for national media and highly regarded resources like Zagat, the Chicago Tribune and CNN. Her local press features include the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, StyleBlueprint, The Atlantan and Atlanta Magazine. Founded in 2013, Charm Etiquette was named Best Classes and Workshops by Best Self Magazine and Erika has been recognized with honors from numerous organizations, including Georgia Tech University’s Women Out Front. 

Erika holds a degree in Economics and International Relations from Spelman College in Atlanta, Georgia, and Certification in Japanese Language and Culture from Nanzan University in Nagoya, Japan. 

A long-time supporter of the United Way of Greater Atlanta, she serves as a member of the Cole Women United Cabinet as well as its Board of Directors. She is also a Summer 2014 United Way VIP Alumni. Coincidentally, her daughter served on the inaugural Youth United Board. 

Her passion for youth and community is evidenced by years of continued service and philanthropy in Atlanta. Erika is a Lifetime Member and serves on the Board of Directors of the Girl Scouts of Greater Atlanta. She is also a member of the Junior League of Atlanta and Atlanta Woman’s Club. In the same year that Charm Etiquette was launched, Erika provided ideation and initial funding to Spelman College for what would grow to become the Spelpreneur program – fostering entrepreneurship and innovation amongst its students.

Erika resides in Atlanta with her husband, John, and two teenage daughters.

#WhyWednesday: Lonnell Williams

“If it wasn’t for the United Way, I wouldn’t be standing here.”

At a young age, United Way YPL board member Lonnell Williams saw firsthand the painful effects of drug violence and intergenerational poverty—and determined to turn his life in a direction of serving his community and lifting others up. Today, he’s committed to ensuring others never experience the hardship he experienced.

Hear Lonnell share his powerful story:

What’s your “why”? At United Way of Greater Atlanta, you can plug into your purpose as a volunteer, advocate, donor or member of one of our many engagement groups.

#WhyWednesday: Kim Boykin

Kim Boykin, Delta Air Lines employee and United Way of Greater Atlanta African American Partnership board member, is passionate about creating opportunities for youth, because “if they can see it, they can be it!”

Today, she shares her why:

How do you fulfill your passion for community? Whether you volunteer, donate or serve on a board, we want to hear how and why you give back to the causes you care about. Share Your Why with United Way of Greater Atlanta!

Congratulations to the graduates of our 2018 Fall VIP Training Program!

We look forward to hearing about your future successes in board appointments.

Interested in finding out more about VIP and board training? Check out the Volunteer Involvement Program.


Monday Session


Khadijah Ameen
Presidential Management Fellow
Center for Disease Control and Prevention


Kelli Anderson
Independent Travel Consultant


Takiia Anderson
The Frugal Biddy


Christen Baskerville
Diversity and Inclusion Campus Recruiter
Deloitte Consulting


Brandon Beal
Associate Marketing Manager


Janene Browder
Attorney, Medicaid Legal Services
Georgia Department of Community Health


Elissa Checov
Manager, Suwanee Branch
Gwinnett County Public Library


Evonna Christmon
Founder/Executive Director
Blossoming Brown Girls

Garvey Cills
Finance Manager


Jennifer Barbosa Clegg
Benefits Consultants
Inova Benefits, LLC


James Cooper
Unit Manager
Waffle House


Shavontana Davis
Founder/Executive Director
The Starr Institute


TK Diallo
Managing Director


Nicole Dove
Director, Business Security Officer


Joann Eastman
Loving Hearts of Atlanta Inc.


Kevin Harris
Harris Enterprise International


Crystal McCorkle
Client Services Specialist

Tamira Moon
To the Mooon and Back Foundation


Denece Robinson
Legacy Healthcare Center


Sabrina F. Salters
Director of Transportation & ADC
Goodwill of North Georgia


Victor Tate
Senior Pastor
First Mt. Pleasant Baptist Church


Antoinette Tuff
Professional Speaker
Antoinette Tuff LLC


Tieashia Velasco
Executive Director
Impact Community Consluting


Jaselyn Willams
Senior HR Business Partner
Digital Realty


Tameka Winchester
Managing Director
Harvard Group International


Sharon Williams
SWB Consulting Group



Wednesday Session


Shirley Askew
Professional Development Consultant
Lilma Implementation Partners


Sabrina Clark
IT Corporate Recruiter
CS Resources


Alan Fountain
Senior Human Resources Specialist – Compensation
Federal Home Loan Bank of Atlanta


Corey Glaze
Assistant Property Manager
BH Management


Aqila Hamilton
Assistant Marketing Manager
SunTrust Bank


Mamie Harper
Carrie’s Closet


Nicole Jones
Director of Project Management
Heritage Werks

Phoebe McCants
Financial Reporting Supervisor
LL Global, Inc.


Carlette Margerum


Neha Negandhi
Host, Talk Show
Seen from the Inside


Dishil Patel
Analyst II, Wealth Strategy and Planning
PNC Wealth Management


Michael Peterson
Finance Manager


Cameron Randle
Business Development Director
LA Enterprise Security Services

Gerry Richardson
Program Director
CaringWorks, Inc.-Hope House


Miles Schmidt
Client Advisor
Sterling Seacrest Partners


Stefanie Small
Community Engagement Manager
Future Foundation


Maurice Stewart
VP of Business Development
Diamond Ventures


Catherine Warren
Economic Empowerment Coordinator
Latin American Association


Milton Wilkes
Piedmont Healthcare

#WhyWednesday: Rashad Stallings

Rashad Stallings is the United Way of Greater Atlanta Young Professional Leaders Vice Chair and an advocate for our community. Today, hear why he donates his time and financial resources to pour into young people in Greater Atlanta.

United Way of Greater Atlanta Young Professional Leaders is a network of individuals, ages 40 and under, who are making an impact for our community and building the next generation of community leaders. Through their year-round support and events like the annual HoliDAY of Service and Night for a Brighter Tomorrow, United Way YPL funds their signature causes: Kids Home Initiative and the new TechUp digital literacy program.