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Leadership DeKalb | Learn. Connect. Advance.

Leadership DeKalb Videos

Latest videos from Leadership DeKalb.

About Leadership DeKalb

A respected leadership development program in DeKalb County, Leadership DeKalb was founded in 1986 by the DeKalb Chamber of Commerce to educate community leaders and to address issues facing the growing population. In 1994, Leadership DeKalb became an independent nonprofit organization. Since then, more than 1,000 community leaders have completed the program. Graduates of the program include CEO’s of top public and private companies, as well as a large number of DeKalb’s elected officials, educators, judges, entrepreneurs, volunteers and nonprofit leaders.

Leadership DeKalb convenes and connects leaders, informs them on matters vital to the county and enhances their leadership skills. This strengthened pipeline of talent immerses in the public, private and not-for-profit sectors, thereby advancing quality of life in DeKalb.

With focus on the entire county, we position current and emerging leaders – reflecting the area’s rich diversity – to unite, commit and act to make DeKalb a premier place to live, work and enjoy life.

Class members learn about history, diversity, government, justice, arts and culture, education, health and economic development in the county. Classmates and alumni gain access to other leaders in all of these sectors. With over 1,000 alumni, we facilitate long-term leadership sustainability.

Leadership DeKalb Team

Leadership DeKalb is coordinated by a staff that is committed to bringing a positive impact to the community.

As a volunteer-driven and membership-oriented organization, members have the opportunity to shape Leadership DeKalb by participating as a member of the Board of Directors, who oversee the organization, or as a committee member, who assist in the planning of various programs.

Maria Balais

Leadership Team
Executive Director

Maria Balais

Maria Balais

Executive Director



Board Of Directors

Brent Adams


John Bayalis

Manager, Intergovernmental Affairs

Sonja Brown

Deputy Chief Assistant Solicitor-General & Special Victims Unit & Community Outreach

Tracy Brown

Deputy Managing Editor

Marquetta Bryan

Of Counsel

Chris Chavez


Tremese Davis

Director, Supplier Diversity

LaTisha Dear-Jackson

Senior Associate

Allyson Gevertz

Marshall Guest

Vice President of Business Climate

Toni Hannah

Business Services & Information Manager

Matt Hicks

Vice President for Government Relations

Mike Jacobs


Paul Jacxsens

Director, Specialty Care Operations & Strategy at the Southeast Permanente Medical Group

Mitchell King

Region Manager

Anne Lerner

Munir Meghjani

Commercial & Investment Real Estate Advisor

Martha Pacini

Executive Director of Marketing & Public Relations

David Payne

Senior Director of Operations

Reggie Peagler

Vice President

Mindy Pillow


Mary Welsh

Brand Marketing

Joshua Williams

Deputy Chief Operating Officer

Sandy Zayac


Tarsha Calloway

Executive Director