Brian McGowan/Invest Atlanta
Brian McGowan is the President/CEO at Invest Atlanta. Brian was appointed by President Barack Obama as U.S. Deputy Assistant Secretary of Commerce. In this capacity he was the Chief Operating Officer of the U.S. Economic Development Administration. Brian was detailed to the White House as a Economic Advisor to lead the Economic Solutions Group within the National Incident Command in response to the BP oil spill. He was also elected as a US Delegate to the Organization of Economic Cooperation and Development in Paris.
Before joining the Obama Administration he was appointed by Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger to serve as California’s Deputy Secretary for Economic Development and Commerce. Prior to this, Brian was appointed as the Economic Development Agency Administrator for the County of San Bernardino and worked for the City of Ontario and the City of Palm Springs. He was also a consultant for the US Agency for International Development where he developed economic growth programs for cities in Bulgaria and Serbia.
Brian received a Bachelor’s degree in Political Science from the University of California, Riverside and a Master’s degree in Politics, Economics and Business from the Claremont Graduate University. He is also the Michael and Mary Johnston Fellow at the Claremont Graduate University where he is completing a PhD in American Politics and Policy.
Councilman H. Lamar Willis/City of Atlanta
H. Lamar Willis was elected in 2001 to serve as the Post 3 At-Large Councilmember for the City of Atlanta. He was then and continues to be the youngest member of the legislative body of the City of Atlanta government. Lamar is currently serving his second term on council, having been re-elected without opposition in 2005. He is currently serving on the on the Transportation, Public Safety/Legal Administration and Community Development/Human Resources Committees.
During his time on Council, Lamar has served as President of Pro Tempore, Chair of the Council’s Transportation Committee for two consecutive years and as Chair of the Pubic Safety & Legal Administration Committee. In his role as Chairman, the Transportation Committee provided oversight over issues dealing with Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport and its $4.5 billion dollar expansion program, City Transportation Initiatives, as well as issues pertaining to MARTA. As Chair of the Public Safety, Lamar championed efforts to assist the Police, Fire and Corrections Departments in securing legislation that would both strengthen their departments and ensure they had the tools needed to further improve public safety efforts in the City of Atlanta.
Lamar a life long resident of Atlanta. He graduated from Northside (North Atlanta) High School and went on to attend Morehouse College. He also received a Master of Science degree in Management and Policy Analysis from Carnegie Mellon University and a Juris Doctorate from Boston College Law School.
In addition to his duties as a council member, Lamar practices law in Atlanta (licensed in Georgia and Florida). He is the Managing Partner of Willis Law Group, LLC. Lamar and his wife of 13 years, Dr. Kamili Willis, are the proud parents of a nine year old daughter, Kayla and a four year old son, Henry. His family has been active members of Cascade United Methodist Church for over thirty years.
Brad Baldwin/Burr & Forman
Brad Baldwin practices in Burr & Forman’s Creditors’ Rights and Bankruptcy practice group and represents both debtors and creditors in bankruptcy and financial restructuring. Brad’s debtor representations include serving as lead restructuring counsel for several large manufacturing companies, including a $100 million textile company and a $100 million rope manufacturer. He also regularly represents various creditors in bankruptcy, including financial institutions, landlords, equipment lessors, suppliers, and municipal governments. Brad has personally conducted numerous bankruptcy auctions involving the sale of large companies, and he is adeptly skilled in representing buyers seeking to acquire assets out of bankruptcy.
In addition to bankruptcy, Brad’s practice includes commercial litigation with an emphasis on creditor’s rights, such as collections, foreclosures, receiverships, garnishments and repossessions.
Brad is a member of the Georgia State Bar, the Supreme Court of Georgia, the Georgia Court of Appeals, the U.S. 11th and 4th Circuit Court of Appeals, and the U.S. District Courts for the Northern and Middle Districts of Georgia. He is a member of the Atlanta Bar Association and is a former Chairman for the Bankruptcy Section of the Atlanta Bar Association. Brad is also a member of the Turnaround Management Association and the Association of Insolvency and Restructuring Advisors.