Julissa White-Smith

Julissa White-Smith is the Director for the Alonzo F. and Norris B. Herndon Foundation and The Herndon Home Museum. Julissa has a B.A. in Integrated Marketing Communication and obtained a Master of Public Administration with a focus on Nonprofit Management from Georgia State University. Joining the Herndon Foundation in 2016, Julissa is responsible for the overall management of The Herndon Foundation, its programs, staff, and physical plant. She manages the acquisition, care, and exhibition of the Herndon Home Museum collection and other museum materials.

Since Julissa has joined the Herndon Foundation team she has re-built the ‘Friends of Herndon’ Membership program, engaged major donors through the restoration of significant Museum artifacts, and lead the Alonzo F. Herndon Game Changer Entrepreneurship Training program, a two year scholarship program that has made over $120,000 in scholarship gifts since 2014 and supported over two-dozen local teens, namely those in the Vine City/English Avenue, Washington Park, Ashview Heights, and the AUC Communities on the Westside prepare or successful futures. In 2017, in collaboration with the Herndon Foundation Board of Trustees and numerous community supporters, she hosted the Inaugural Game Changers Gala creating an opportunity for over 180 local business and community leaders to show their support to the next generation of entrepreneurs. Most recently she led the application that contributed to the Herndon Home Museums selection to participate in the Collections Assessment for Preservation (CAP) program as a part of the Federal Institute for Museum and Library services; identifying preventive conservation priorities and providing a final assessment report. Julissa reports to the Herndon Foundation Board of trustees, prepares activity reports and communicates to the board in bimonthly board meetings.

Julissa has 10 years of experience in project management, resource development, and leadership. With roots in public radio, she served as station manager to local college radio station 89.1 WBCX and transitioned in her postgrad career to working in local government. Having served both as assistant to the DeKalb Economic Development Authority, and Marketing Manager for community development firm, APDS, in which she oversaw brand management, event planning, and communications she holds personal and professional relations across sectors.  Her transition to the Arts & Humanities began in 2013 through her work during the Sesquicentennial of Black Emancipation during her terms as a fellow for the Georgia Humanities Council.

Prior to joining the Alonzo F. and Norris B. Herndon Foundation; Julissa provided resource development and management consulting services to The Atlanta Office of the Public Defender. In this role Julissa developed strategic assessment and planning toward high-visibility initiatives that improved defender workloads, due process procedures and access to counsel. This experience compliments Julissa’s ongoing passion project, teaching incarcerated adults at Dekalb County Jail.  Julissa returned to the nonprofit sector in 2016 seeking to educate and inspire people with storytelling.

Julissa has built her experience and volunteered her time as an intern and fellow with the Boys and Girls Clubs of America, Leadership DeKalb, the National Conference of Black Mayors, and the Georgia Humanities Council.  Julissa is a proud member of the Kappa Omega chapter of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority Incorporated and as well as Omicron Delta Kappa, National Leadership Honor Society and Phi Kappa Phi Honor Society. She is active in the events committees of the Black Chambers of Commerce and her local Neighborhood Association. She considers herself a lifetime learner and enjoys reading and cultivating her flower garden at her SW Atlanta home that she shares with her Husband and their dog, a Pitbull terrier.

To contact Julissa, please call 404.581.9813 or e-mail jwsmith@herndonhome.org