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Leadership Breakfast (Election Edition): Keisha Lance Bottoms, Mayoral Candidate

  • Center for Civic Innovation 115 Martin Luther King Junior Drive Suite #304 Atlanta, GA 30303 United States (map)


2017 is an important year for the city of Atlanta. We will elect a new mayor, city council, and school board. Every month this year, the Center for Civic Innovation will host candidates for a candid and open conversation, where we learn more about their personal story and vision for the future of this city.

Join the Center for Civic Innovation as we welcome Keisha Lance Bottoms current mayoral candidate for the City of Atlanta!

7:30am Doors open, coffee and breakfast served

8:00am Coversation begins



Keisha Lance Bottoms is a compassionate leader and committed public servant. For nearly eight years, Keisha has represented a large portion of the historic Southwest Atlanta community as a member of the Atlanta City Council. During her service on Council, Keisha has sponsored groundbreaking legislation that has addressed the City’s $1.5 billion unfunded pension liability and helped grow the City’s reserves from $7.4 million to nearly $150 million, in just over five years. She has also authored the toughest Panhandling legislation in the history of Atlanta, which combines empathy with enforcement, and has resulted in offenders receiving often needed social services to help break the cycle of recidivism.

Keisha has worked with colleagues to achieve the goal of 2,000 officers within the Atlanta Police Department and to successfully balance the City’s budget each year, without increasing taxes. She has served as Vice-Chair of the Public Safety Committee and as Chair of the Council’s Zoning Committee. During her term as Vice-Chair of the City’s Transportation Committee, the Maynard H. Jackson International terminal at Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport opened, solidifying Hartsfield-Jackson’s place as the busiest airport in the world. Keisha also launched Invest in Southwest, a 360- degree urban planning initiative with the goal of revitalizing and expanding economic development within underserved communities.

Keisha has also served as Executive Director of The City of Atlanta and Fulton County Recreation Authority (AFCRA), where she fostered community engagement, worked alongside corporate partners, and negotiated and managed government relations and public finance. As chief executive officer of AFCRA, Keisha spearheaded the sale and $350M planned redevelopment transition of Turner Field (former home of the Atlanta Braves). Keisha has also lead a team in redeveloping iconic entertainment venues across Atlanta, including Philips Arena (home of the Atlanta Hawks) and the world- renowned Zoo Atlanta. AFCRA also operates portions of John A. White Park, where the junior golf program, The First Tee, is hosted. Alongside her public service career, Keisha has maintained a private law practice for more than 20 years and has served as General Counsel for a multi-million dollar business, as well as a Judge (Pro Hoc) in Fulton County State Court. She has also worked as a legal analyst and reporter for various media outlets.

Keisha’s commitment to community and public service has been recognized by the YWCA Academy of Women Achievers. Keisha has also been deemed a Woman of Style & Substance on behalf of Children's Healthcare of Atlanta (CHOA). The Atlanta Business Chronicle has named Keisha as a Who’s Who in Sports Business. She is a member of the prestigious Leadership Atlanta Class of 2013 and was honored in 1997

as one of 10 Outstanding Young Atlantans based upon her professional achievements and dedicated community service.

Keisha has volunteered with numerous community organizations and has served on the boards of The Children’s School, the Firefighters’ Pension Fund, Atlanta Mayoral Board of Service, the Andrew and Walter Young YMCA, Central Atlanta Progress, YWCA of Atlanta, CURE for Childhood Cancer, the Atlanta Cyclorama Task Force, and Ben Hill United Methodist Church. She also serves on the Board of Families First, where she shares her personal story of adoption and advocates on behalf of adoption and foster care. Keisha has also served consecutive terms as gala chair for the National Black Arts Festival, which raises more than a half-million dollars annually in support of the country’s oldest multidisciplinary arts organization focused exclusively on the arts and on artists of African descent.

Keisha is a member of the State Bar of Georgia, the Atlanta Chapter of Jack and Jill of America, the Dogwood City Chapter of The Links, Inc., the Atlanta Alumnae Chapter of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc., and is a member of the National Center for Civil and Human Rights – Women’s Solidarity Society.

She is a graduate of Florida A&M University, Magna Cum Laude, and Georgia State University College of Law. Keisha is the daughter of the late American R&B singer Major Lance and Sylvia Robinson. She and her husband,
Derek W. Bottoms, have the privilege of being the parents of four wonderful children.