Atlanta BeltLine, Inc. (ABI) has hired Nonet Sykes for the new position of Chief Equity and Inclusion Officer (CEIO), ABI announced today.
As CEIO, Sykes will help lead, manage and plan for equity and inclusion related to the Atlanta BeltLine. According to the press release, she will also be heavily involved in making policies to address health and sustainability in communities, innovation in community outreach and communication, displacement mitigation and long-term affordable housing efforts.
“The Atlanta BeltLine is in a unique position to spur positive transformation at the deepest level of our city’s fabric,” Sykes said. “Building a comprehensive transportation and development network that serves the needs of everyone can level the playing field and shift opportunities and access to resources that can fundamentally address Atlanta’s challenges.”
Sykes was previously the Director of Race, Equity, and Inclusion at the Annie E. Casey Foundation, where she developed strategies focused on the groups’s commitment to racial and ethnic equity and inclusion, according to ABI.
ABI reviewed dozens of applications in the search for a CEIO, and ultimately decided to “hire someone that could create an organizational culture that sets clear expectations at all levels of the organization,” Brian McGowan, president and CEO of ABI, said. “[Sykes] brings that kind of visionary leadership to the table.”
Sykes also serves on the board of directors for the National Recreation and Parks Association, board of advisors for National League of Cities’ Race, Equity and Leadership Initiative, and board of directors for the Association of Baltimore Area Grantmakers (ABAG).