Gerald McDowell / Aerotropolis
Gerald McDowell, originally from Hope Mills, N.C., graduated from DeVry University in Atlanta in 1987 with a B.S. in Computer Information Systems. He spent more than 18 years in the IT industry, managing projects in more than 40 states and 12 countries, and he was also a small business owner for nearly five years. Additionally, Gerald served as a teacher for two years as an evening Instructor at DeKalb Tech. He is a 2008 graduate of the Georgia Academy for Economic Development and a 2009 graduate of the Gwinnett Neighborhood Leadership Institute. Gerald and his wife, Toni, have been married for 26 years. They have two children: a daughter, Taylor, 22; and a son, Wesley, 19.
Gerald was on staff with the Gwinnett Village CID and Gwinnett Village Community Alliance for four years. His efforts resulted in more than 250 commercial property owners joining the CID, which accounted for $700 million in property value. He also assisted in creating the Gwinnett Village Merchant’s Association.
Gerald’s successes with the Gwinnett Village provided the experience he would draw from as the first Executive Director of the Lilburn CID – a position he occupied for five years. Even though this CID was formed during a time of national economic recession, Gerald was instrumental in securing $2 million in grant funding.
In 2015, Gerald started as the Executive Director of the Airport West CID, which joined Airport South CID in January 2016 to become the Aerotropolis Atlanta CIDs. Under Gerald’s leadership, the Aerotropolis CIDs have received more than $50 million in grants and project funding. Gerald was a member of the inaugural USDOT Leadership Academy conducted by U.S. Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx. Additionally, Gerald was a key event speaker during the 2016 Sustainable Airport Area Seminar, focusing on issues related to workforce development, transportation and urban design.
Chris Butsch / The Millennial Maximizer
Speaker and Author
Chris Butsch calls himself “The Millennial Maximizer.” Author of The Millennial’s Guide to Making Happiness, Chris writes, speaks, and coaches on the topic of maximizing the Millennial generation’s potential. He speaks to managers, teachers, and parents of Millennials to help them understand how to connect with and unlock the potential of America’s most unique generation, and helps Millennials themselves reach their own potential through positive psychology science and coaching.