Board of Directors

Edward J. “Jack” Hardin (Chairman)

Mr. Hardin led the team that created the Gateway Center, and has served as Chairman of the Board since its founding. Mr. Hardin is a founding partner of Rogers & Hardin, LLP, President of the Board of Trustees of the Georgia Legal Services Foundation, a member of the Board of Grady Memorial Hospital Corporation, and a member of the Council on Foreign Relations. Previously, he served as the Chairman of the Board of the United Way of Metropolitan Atlanta, Chairman of the Board the Center for the Study of World Religions at Harvard University Divinity School and Chairman of the Board of the Paidea School.

The United Way, the Anti-Defamation League, Travelers Aid of Metropolitan Atlanta, Emory University Law School, the Chief Justice’s Commission on Professionalism and the Georgia Budget and Public Policy Institute among others, have recognized Jack with awards for his public service. Mr. Hardin was an original member of the Regional Commission on Homelessness and has, along with former Mayor Shirley Franklin, served as its Co-Chairman since 2009.

Debi M. Starnes, PhD

Debi Starnes served as Mayor Shirley Franklin’s policy advisor on metro Atlanta’s initiatives and projects to prevent and end homelessness. She currently serves as a board member of the Regional Commission on Homelessness. Dr. Starnes was steadfast in her support and advocacy for improving Atlanta’s continuum of care for the homeless population during her term as an Atlanta City Councilwoman from 1994-2005.

She advocated bringing homeless providers and advocates together with the business community, forming the Homeless Action Group. She helped develop The Rock, which was the first implementation of a ”coordination station” for comprehensive homeless services. She then worked to help fold The Rock into the Gateway Center.

Dr. Starnes helped develop the Imperial Hotel, Hope House, Genesis Shelter and several other transitional housing facilities for homeless men, women and children. With Mayor Franklin she developed the $20 million Homeless Opportunity Fund.

As the co-founder of EMSTAR Research in 1988,  her professional work has included designing and evaluating programs in diverse areas of public service. Dr. Starnes received her BSW and MA from East Tennessee State University and her PhD in 1987 from Georgia State University.

Robert Glustrom

Robert Glustrom has been active in Atlanta’s legal, business, and philanthropic community since the late 1970s. In private practice since 1976, Mr. Glustrom has also taught and lectured at the Emory University Law School, the John Marshall Law School, and the College of the National Institute of Mental Health. From 1978 to 1998, he served as the civil commitment judge for the Fulton County Probate Court in Atlanta, and from 1980 to 2000 was Of Counsel with the law firm Arnall, Golden and Gregory.

He is currently Managing Member of the RCG Properties group of companies, and serves as Chairman of TSN LLC, a web based portal for telecommunications carriers. In the past, Mr. Glustrom co-founded and co-owned the Atlanta Silverbacks professional soccer team, serving as its co-chair, and served on several other boards, including that of the publicly held Harry’s Farmers Market (HARY). Mr. Glustrom graduated from the University of Wisconsin-Madison in 1973 and received his J.D. from The University of Chicago Law School in 1976.

Greg Heston

Greg Heston is an Atlanta native. Over the years he has given his time and resources to serve the under-resourced of Atlanta, through such organizations and venues as the former Palmer House of Techwood Homes, the Nicholas House, and the Atlanta Youth Project. Greg currently serves on board of Reformed Ministries International, Inc., an Alabama-based mission organization. Greg has been a United Way of Atlanta donor since 1986, and a member of the Alexis de Tocqueville Society since 2005.

Professionally, Greg is a partner with Ernst & Young LLP (EY), and has practiced public accounting in Atlanta since he began his career with EY in 1986. Greg holds CPA licenses in Georgia and Alabama, and is member of the Georgia Society of CPAs and the American Institute of CPAs. Greg is past president of the Atlanta Chapter of the Georgia Society of CPAs.

Greg graduated from Auburn University in 1985 with a Bachelors of Science in Business Administration (Accountancy). Greg currently serves on the Board of the Auburn University Foundation, as well as the Advisory Council of the Auburn University School of Accountancy. Greg was recognized as an outstanding alumnus by the SOA in 2007.

Greg and his family are members of Westminster Presbyterian Church in Atlanta, where Greg has previously served as a deacon and finance committee chair. Greg married to Mary Grace in 1991, and together they have six children ranging in age from 24 to 6.

Peter McMahon

Peter currently serves as General Manager of the flagship Hyatt Regency Atlanta. Previously, Peter served as General Manager of Hyatt Regency San Antonio and the Grand Hyatt San Antonio. He has also served as General Manager of Hyatt Regency Savannah and Hyatt Regency Suites Atlanta Northwest in Marietta.

Since returning to Atlanta, Peter has become actively involved in the downtown business community. He currently serves on the Board of Directors of the Atlanta Convention and Visitors Bureau, the Atlanta Sports Council, Central Atlanta Progress and the Atlanta Police Foundation. Peter is a member of the Atlanta Hotel Council and has also been appointed as Chairman of the Board of the Mary Parker Foundation.

Peter is passionate about service and has taken leadership roles in each of the communities where he has served. He is actively involved in improving quality of life issues that include transportation, downtown development and public safety which are important to the guests and associates he serves. He is a graduate of Oklahoma State University with a degree in Hotel and Restaurant Administration.

Keith Evans

Keith Evans currently serves as the fifth President of the Westminster Schools. Keith has shown a deep commitment to issues of homelessness; he previously served as Chairman of the Board for CARITAS, the largest provider of homeless services in the Metro Richmond area. He holds masters degrees from Harvard University and the University of Tennessee.

Cindy LeBlanc

Cindy LeBlanc is Chairman and CFO of Brewed to Serve Restaurant Group, Inc. Brewed to Serve owns Max Lager’s Wood-Fired Grill & Brewery, Georgia’s oldest brewpub, White Oak Kitchen & Cocktails, and Richards’ Southern Fried at Krog Street Market, all intown restaurants.

Ms. LeBlanc’s commitment to working to end homelessness began with programs to engage her guests in the process through raising awareness and fundraising. Through her restaurants, she continues to create endeavors to promote, endorse and fundraise to aid The Gateway Center, Project Open Hand, The National Kidney Foundation and other worthy causes. She also devotes time to Women’s Entrepreneurship at Georgia Tech as a speaker and participant in roundtable events and seminars.

Ms. LeBlanc has been working in the City of Atlanta for 20 years and prior to that worked in Europe in international real estate development as the CFO of a multi-national real estate firm. She previously held positions at KPMG Peat Marwick in international taxation and business consulting. Ms. LeBlanc holds an MBA and Bachelor of Science in Accounting from the University of California, Sacramento, and is a CPA licensed in the state of Georgia.

Calvin Ward

Calvin is a Senior Private Banker located in the Southeast Region/Atlanta Wells Fargo Private Bank office. Mr. Ward works as part of a team to meet high-net-worth clients’ comprehensive wealth management needs. In his role, he specializes in developing and implementing tailored credit, deposit, and cash management strategies for clients.

Prior to joining Wells Fargo, Mr. Ward worked at The Northern Trust Company for 20- years, where he was a Commercial Banking Relationship Manager. He has been in the financial services industry for more than 30 years.

Mr. Ward earned a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration from Illinois State University.  Mr. Ward also has a Master’s of Business Administration degree from DePaul University in Chicago, Illinois.

Calvin’s leadership and community involvement activities include a board membership position at the United Way of Greater Atlanta, and involvement with the College Park Opportunity Zone, serving low to moderate income families in South Fulton.

Calvin lives in South Fulton with his wife Louisa and their son, William.

Mary Benton

Mary Benton serves as the Pro Bono Partner at Alston & Bird, formulating and overseeing the Firm’s strategic vision for pro bono and leading the pro bono legal and community service program across all 11 offices. Ms. Benton ensures that all Alston & Bird attorneys have the opportunity to fulfill their professional obligation to perform pro bono and service work at the intersections of each individual’s passion and talents. She successfully fosters and maintains relationships with nonprofit legal service providers, working together to create opportunities for meaningful and impactful pro bono projects, provides training and supervision on pro bono matters, and facilitates client and practice group pro bono initiatives. She leads the firm-wide pro bono committee, which supports and encourages pro bono participation and develops policies and practice to enhance the Firm’s pro bono program and culture.

Ms. Benton is dedicated to serving in her community through volunteerism and board service. In addition to The Gateway Center, she serves on the Board of Directors for The United Way of Greater Atlanta, Georgia Appleseed Center for Law and Policy, the National Appleseed Network, and Atlanta Legal Aid. She also serves on the Advisory Boards of Habitat for Humanity of Atlanta, Future Foundation and the Truancy Intervention Project. She is a member of the United Way Tocqueville Women’s Leadership Council and a member of the Leadership Atlanta Class of 2014.

Prior to her role as Pro Bono Partner, Ms. Benton was a partner in the State and Local Tax Group and has over 20 years of substantive experience advising clients on state and local tax implications in complex transactions and representing multistate corporations in state tax disputes and controversies.

Rayford Davis

Rayford Davis has built a track record of developing teams and delivering results within the for-profit and non-profit sectors.  Currently, as the Founder and CEO of Exception-ALLYSM, Rayford leads a team of education technology entrepreneurs, who provide digital solutions to help parents of children with special needs ensure their children have the highest quality of life.

In the non-profit sector, Rayford serves as a Board Director of Odyssey, an education non-profit organization at The Westminster Schools that delivers an academic enrichment program grounded in project-based learning and exposure to college and career opportunities. He also serves on the Atlanta Advisory board of JumpStart, an early childhood literacy organization. Additionally, he has advised a number of significant foundations, including the Ford Foundation, working with the West Africa Office in Lagos, Nigeria and the Ball Foundation, near Chicago, Illinois.

A native of Decatur, GA, Rayford is an honors graduate from the Westminster Schools, a magna cum laude recipient of a BS in Chemical Engineering-Materials from Florida A&M University, and a graduate in the top 10% of his class at Harvard Business School. Rayford is a member of Impact Church and Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity, Inc. and is a coach for T-ball, flag football and soccer.

Horace Sibley (Director Emeritus)

Horace Sibley has worked tirelessly to end chronic homelessness in Atlanta for more than a decade, and is the former Chairman of the United Way Regional Commission on Homelessness. Under his leadership, metro Atlanta has increased the collaboration of homeless service providers and developed innovative programs to address homelessness. He was instrumental in developing the Regional Commission on Homelessness.

The most recent of his awards and accolades are the John W. Macy award for outstanding individual leadership in the fight to end homelessness from the National Alliance to End Homelessness, and the Mercy Moves through Me award from Saint Joseph’s Mercy Care Services.

Mr. Sibley is a retired Senior Partner of King & Spalding LLP with more than 35 years of experience in national and international business transactions. He earned a B.A. from Vanderbilt University; a J.D. degree from the University of Georgia, and an MBA from Georgia State University.

Stacey Abrams (Emeritus)

Ms. Abrams’ commitment to public service is reflected in her role as State Representative for Georgia House District 84. Ms. Abrams also serves on the Board of Trustees for St. Joseph’s Health System, the Boards of Visitors for Emory University and Agnes Scott College, and the Board of Directors for Literacy Action.

She is a member of the advisory boards of Branan Towers Senior Facility of Wesley Woods Foundation and Health Students Taking Action Together. Her previous service includes Chair of the Board of Directors for Hands on Atlanta and Chair of the Women’s Legacy Group for the United Way of Atlanta. She is an accomplished writer on issues of public policy, taxation, and nonprofit organizations, having been published in The American Prospect, The Christian Science Monitor, Yale Law and Policy Review, and the Southern University Law Review. She has taught courses on law and social policy and received her J.D. from the Yale Law School. She graduated from the University of Texas at Austin with an M.P.Aff. in public policy. She earned a B.A. in Interdisciplinary Studies from Spelman College.