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Metro Atlanta Chamber

Our Team

ChooseATL Team Members

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ChooseATL & Brand Communications Team Members

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Deisha Barnett

Chief Brand and Communications Officer, Head of Diversity & Inclusion

Deisha is an accomplished leader who guides communications and marketing strategies, counsels C-level executives and grows teams. She is a passionate driver of integrated campaigns that generate results – whether targeting investors, analysts, consumers, employees or community stakeholders.

Deisha leads the Metro Atlanta Chamber’s strategic focus on promoting Atlanta and is the organization’s head of diversity and inclusion. Her team spans across internal communications, media relations, executive visibility, speech writing, digital communications, traditional marketing and the region’s millennial and gen Z-targeted movement, ChooseATL. She is also charged with driving collaboration and collective impact among the region’s diversity and inclusion leaders, in addition to advancing diversity and inclusion efforts within the Metro Atlanta Chamber.

Deisha brings new energy to Atlanta’s place marketing efforts and is driving meaningful impact as she works to position the region as a great place for talent and a great place for business. She ushered in a data-centric approach to marketing that includes net promoter research, social listening, audience insights, and a refreshed brand architecture and narrative. She led storytelling that came to life as the region bid for Amazon’s HQ2, Starbucks and Blackrock, and launched ATLBrandBox.com in advance of Super Bowl LIII. Deisha conceived key strategies in the Metro Atlanta Chamber’s response to COVID-19, including its transition to virtual convenings, the launch of a daily emerging trends report and an effort to connect displaced workers with available jobs. Her role in the senior leadership team also extends to guiding the organization’s transformation into a “next-generation chamber.”

For nearly 10 years prior, Deisha was dedicated to promoting and protecting Walmart’s reputation. She led various aspects of the retailer’s global corporate communications function, including crisis communications, financial communications, consumer public relations, Walmart Foundation communications and CEO-positioning. In addition, Deisha established Walmart’s Women in Corporate Affairs speaker series, designed to grow women leaders through education, exposure and mentoring. Deisha started her career at Ketchum where she worked with consumer brand and multicultural marketing clients. She generated buzz for brands including Delta Air Lines and The Home Depot, and earned Silver Anvil awards for work supporting Kodak and Procter & Gamble.

Deisha is known for her media relations prowess. For example, she landed Walmart President and CEO, Doug McMillon exclusive interviews with Fortune Magazine, CNBC and FOX Business. She also convinced BloombergTV to, for the first time, broadcast a morning of programming from Atlanta and interview more than a dozen Atlanta CEOs and leaders, including Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms, The Home Depot’s Craig Menear and the Intercontinental Exchange’s Jeff Sprecher. Deisha has been featured as a spokesperson in local and national news outlets, including TODAY, the Wall Street Journal, the Atlanta Journal-Constitution and Good Day Atlanta.

PRWeek described Deisha as a “pro who represents the future of PR.” She is on the executive advisory council for the University of Georgia Grady College of Journalism and Mass Communications. She is also on the boards of the Atlanta Press Club and Cristo Rey Atlanta Jesuit High School. She served on communications committees for the Super Bowl LIII Host Committee and the 2020 NCAA Men’s Final Four Host Committee, and is a Leadership Atlanta alumna.

Deisha is a proud graduate of Clark Atlanta University where she received Bachelor of Arts in Mass Media Arts with a concentration in public relations. Deisha and her family reside in Smyrna, GA.

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Jennifer Spann

Senior Director, Content & Design

Jennifer M. Spann leads the Brand Communications’ content and design team. From executive thought leadership and internal communications to graphic design and narrative writing, her team helps tell metro Atlanta’s remarkable story through words and visuals. The team also communicates MAC’s value proposition to our many stakeholders and partners across the region.

Prior to joining MAC, Jennifer worked in various communications roles throughout the nonprofit and government sectors. Notably, she spent 13 years with the Mississippi Development Authority, so she understands the tremendous impact and unique nuances of the economic development world. A champion for her home state of Mississippi, she was also an opinion columnist for a local newspaper and co-hosted a tourism-themed weekly radio show on Mississippi Public Broadcasting. When she’s away from the office, Jennifer enjoys writing poetry, hosting an imaginary cooking show in her kitchen, staying fit through running and yoga, and sharing this crazy life with her husband, Demond.

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Simeon Spearman

Senior Director, Channels and Analytics

Simeon specializes in digital marketing and analytics with a focus on owned channels strategies, paid media planning, city marketing and measurement. His work for Fortune 500 brands have been awarded and recognized at the Cannes Lions, Streamy Awards, Webby Awards and Shorty Awards. Simeon is a metro Atlanta native, received an undergraduate degree from the Georgia Institute of Technology and currently calls southeast Atlanta home.

Simeon began his career as a consulting futurist, working on scenario planning and consumer insights for Fortune 500 companies for a futures consultancy based in Washington, D.C. He then became a trendspotter and digital strategist at ad agencies in the Atlanta area before joining the Emerging and Social Media Marketing team at AT&T, where he worked on campaigns and branded entertainment initiatives targeted to Gen Z and Millennials.

Simeon joined the Metro Atlanta Chamber in 2017 to oversee the launch and management of ChooseATL’s THEA platform, a first-of-its kind regional video streaming services that showcases metro Atlanta’s content creators. He now oversees the Channels and Analytics practice for the Brand Communications team—directing channel strategy across paid and owned media.

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Ashley Tanks

Senior Director, ChooseATL

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Ashley is an integrated marketing and strategic communications leader with deep experience in public relations, brand communications and integrated campaign planning. She leads public relations and programming for the Brand Communications team – directing marketing and communications strategy for MAC initiatives and the organization’s millennial and gen Z-targeted movement, ChooseATL.

Prior to joining MAC, Ashley worked in various marketing and communications roles for corporate and agency clients within healthcare, consumer brands, government affairs and the tv and film industry. Most recently at Edelman, she drove planning and execution of integrated marketing and social impact campaigns for multi-national consumer and health brands. She also was selected to serve as the diversity and inclusion steward for the south region, facilitating cross-cultural competency trainings, driving programming and momentum to increase representation of racially and ethnically diverse employees and fostering greater inclusion across five offices.

Ashley is an Atlanta native and proud alumna of Howard University and the University of Georgia. In her free time, she enjoys exploring new restaurants, binge watching the latest pop-culture tv shows and volunteering. Ashley currently resides in the West End with her chihuahua, Princess.

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Natalie Jones

Senior Marketing Manager

Natalie drives integrated marketing strategies focusing on metro Atlanta’s key industries including IoT, creative industries, bioscience, supply chain, fintech and others, that fuel regional economic development. Prior to joining the Brand Communications team, Natalie spent several years in economic development where she managed a regional mergers and acquisition (M&A) foreign direct investment strategy and served as the lead on the Global Cities Initiative 2.0 project around digital supply chain and global economic partnerships.

She is a current member of the Junior League of Atlanta Inc., where she serves on the marketing council as editor of the organization’s magazine, and is on the boards of the Atlanta International Arbitration Society, the Atlanta BeltLine’s AB67 and a member of LEAD Atlanta’s Class of 2020.

Natalie holds a bachelor's degree in English with a concentration in advanced composition and rhetoric from Georgia State University, and she lives in Knight Park/Howell Station with her husband, Eddie, and son, Preston.

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Alexis Everett

Marketing Manager

Alexis is a marketing professional with a passion for community building, storytelling, and digital copywriting. After studying Mass Media Arts and Spanish at the University of Georgia, she followed her passion to ChooseATL, an initiative dedicated to attracting and retaining next-gen talent in metro Atlanta. In her current role as marketing manager, Alexis oversees ChooseATL’s signature events, partnerships, and community engagement initiatives.

Missouri native turned ATL enthusiast, Alexis lives in the Old Fourth Ward and enjoys spending free time riding her bike, reading a thriller, or frequenting a local coffee shop. Don’t hesitate to reach out and say hello!

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Amanda Suttles

Manager, Channels & Analytics

Amanda is a communications professional with a passion for all things digital. She graduated from Kennesaw State University in 2015 with a bachelor’s degree in communications, with a focus on public relations.

Amanda is proud to live in Atlanta and work for an organization devoted to advancing the metro area. She loves telling Atlanta’s story through digital strategy, social media and analytics.

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Akshay Gopalakrishnan

Content & Design Manager

Akshay is a designer and photographer who has a passion for creating powerful designs to cultivate impactful brands, spread unwavering messages and develop inspiring conversations. He began his professional career after joining the Metro Atlanta Chamber as an intern in 2015 and now manages the Content and Design team for MAC and ChooseATL. Through his leadership, Akshay has maintained a consistent look and feel for various brands, programs, events and regional initiatives.

Though a graphic designer and photographer by day, he is a bonfire-starting, concert-attending and Netflix-binging machine by night. His dreams include owning a cabin, playing with dogs and going to Ireland. His nightmares involve bad kerning, PowerPoint presentations and Papyrus.

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Cameron Adcock

Communications Coordinator

Cameron is a communications and media relations professional with the Metro Atlanta Chamber. In his current role, Cameron creates, ideates and implements communications strategies for Chamber programs and initiatives. He directs editorial for the Metro Business thought leadership column on the Saporta Report and the MAC Newsroom. Additionally, Cameron engages with local media to ensure MAC and the metro region remain top of mind for both local and national outlets.

Cameron graduated from the University of Georgia with bachelor’s degrees in journalism and political science and studied at Paris Institute of Political Studies in Paris, France as a foreign exchange student. Cameron is fluent in French and currently lives in Westside Atlanta.

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Justin Clay

Administrative Assistant

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Justin is a native Atlantan with versatile communications skills and industry experience across public relations, television news and social media. Here at ChooseATL and the Metro Atlanta Chamber, he works on the brand communications team supporting projects and serving as a point of reference for the Chief Brand and Communications Officer, Deisha Barnett.  

Justin is a Georgia State University alumnus with a bachelor’s degree in journalism and a minor in both film and women’s gender and sexuality studies. He's proud to say that his career has allowed him to uplift LGBTQ+ initiatives, including his social media work for Atlanta Pride 2019. Additionally, you can catch Justin quoted in the Condé Nast publication, them.

Whether it’s video production, publicity, or something entirely different, Justin is the one to accept the challenge.

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