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Kenney Dennard Publisher

Georgia's 50 Most Influential Women 2011

The 50 women who, in the opinion of the staff of the Georgia Informer, are the most influential women in Georgia for the year 2011 are listed on these pages. This list resulted from informal polling across Georgia to receive nominations and a meeting of the staff at which the merits of the numerous nominees were discussed.

During the deliberations, the staff had these criteria in mind: Does the individual’s position command widespread influence among people of the state? Do the individual’s decision-making activities affect the lives, thinking, and actions of large segments of the state's population? Does the individual head an organization which greatly influences people statewide or whose members are traditionally influential in their communities? Is the individual significantly influential among those who hold positions in which their policies directly affect the lives of large numbers of people?

We believe all of these women meet these criteria; however we welcome your comments and any suggestions.

stacey abrams

Stacey Abrams
House Minority Leader for Georgia

maisha akbar

Dr. Maisha Akbar
Professor & Playwright

tina ansa

Tina McElroy Ansa
Novelist, Filmaker & Teacher

cheryl bachelder

Cheryl A. Bachelder
CEO, AFC Enterprises

juanita baranco

Juanita Baranco
Exec. VP and Chief Operating Officer Of Baranco Automotive Group

anne barnes

Anne Elizabeth Barnes
Judge For Georgia Court of Appeals

jaquelyn belcher

Jacquelyn M. Belcher
President of Georgia Perimeter College

gloria butler

Gloria Butler
State Senator

helen butler

Helen Butler
Exec. Dir. Coalition For The People’s Agenda

xernona clayton

Xernona Clayton
Executive Producer of the Trumpet Awards

pearl cleage

Pearl Cleage
Novelist, Playwright

cathy cox

Cathy Cox
President of Young Harris College

emma darnell

Emma Darnell
President of E.I. Darnell and Associates
County Commissioner Fulton County

emily davis

Emily Davis
Baldwin County Commissioner

Margaret DeFrancisco

Margaret DeFrancisco
President Of The Georgia Lottery Corp.

kit dunlap

Kit Dunlap
CEO- Greater Hall Co. Chamber of Commerce

Shirley Franklin

Shirley Franklin
Former Atlanta Mayor

Helene Gayle

Dr. Helene Gayle
President/CEO of CARE USA in Atlanta

Renee Lewis Glover

Renee Lewis Glover
CEO Of The Atlanta Housing Authority

Carol W. Hunstein

Carol W. Hunstein
Justice of the Supreme Court

Donna W. Hyland

Donna W. Hyland
President/CEO Children’s Healthcare Of Atlanta

Ingrid Saunders Jones

Ingrid Saunders Jones
Senior Vice President of Coca Cola

Jan Jones

Jan Jones
Speaker Pro Tempore
GA. House of Representatives

Juanita T. Jordan

Juanita T. Jordan
Exec. Dir. Of Payton Anderson Foundation

Monica Kaufman

Monica Kaufman
Anchor of WSB-TV

Gwen Keys

Gwen Keys
Regional Administrator for EPA

Barbara King

Rev. Barbara King
Pastor of Hillside Chapel & Truth Center

Bernice King

Rev. Bernice King
Associate Pastor of New Birth Baptist Church

Dorothy Leland

Dr. Dorothy Leland
President Georgia College & University

Elaine Lucas

Elaine Lucas
Macon City Council Member

Evelyn Lowery

Evelyn Lowery
President of Women SCLC

Janice Mathis

Janice Mathis
VP/Exec. Dir. of Rainbow Push

Aimee R. Maxwell

Aimee R. Maxwell
Exec. Dir. of The Georgia Innocence Project

M. Yvette Miller

M. Yvette Miller
Judge for State of Ga. Court of Appeals

Felicia A. Moore

Felicia A. Moore
Atlanta City Council Woman

Heidi Moore

Heidi Moore
Advocate For Children With Special Needs

Elisabeth Omilami

Elisabeth Omilami
CEO of Hosea Feed The Hungry and Homeless

Miriam Paris

Miriam Paris
President Macon City Council

Sylvia Russell

Sylvia Russell
President - AT&T Georgia, Atlanta

Rita Samuels

Rita Samuels
Exec. Dir. Georgia Coalition Of Black Women

Alexis Scott

Alexis Scott
Publisher - Atlanta Daily News

Beverly A. Scott

Beverly A. Scott
Gen. Mgr./CEO - MARTA - Atlanta

Suzanne Sitherwood

Suzanne Sitherwood
President - Atlanta Gas Light

Dr. Beverly Daniel Tatum

Dr. Beverly Daniel Tatum
President of Spellman College

Dr. Betty J. Tolbert

Dr. Betty J. Tolbert
Founder & Principal of Progressive Christian Academy

Natasha Trethewey

Natasha Trethewey
Pulitzer Prize Poet and a Professor

Allison Wall

Allison Wall
Executive Director of Georgia Watch

Paula Wallace

Paula Wallace
President/Co-Founder
Savannah College of Art and Design

Brenda Wood

Brenda Wood
Anchor for 11Alive News in Atlanta

Sally Quillian Yates

Sally Quillian Yates
U.S. Attorney, Northern District of Georgia