Mayor’s Office of Communications
55 Trinity Avenue, Suite 2500 • Atlanta, Georgia 30303
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: 05/15/12
Mayor Kasim Reed to Discuss Economic and Social Issues at New Cities Summit in Paris
Mayor Reed also will focus on strengthening public-private partnerships to benefit the
City of Atlanta
Mayor Kasim Reed will participate in two panel discussions during a gathering of the New Cities Summit this week in Paris. More than 800 elected officials, members of the business community, architects, urban planners and academics are gathering to discuss innovative ways to approach urban development issues and policies at the invitation-only event, hosted by the New Cities Foundation from May 14-16.
Mayor Reed accepted the invitation to participate in the New Cities Summit to strengthen the City of Atlanta’s relationships with nonprofit foundations that work with cities and elected leaders to develop solutions, often through grants, technical assistance and other support, for challenging urban issues such as adequate housing, transportation and economic opportunity.
“I look forward to a robust exchange of ideas with elected officials, business executives, nonprofit organizations and other international thought leaders that will help the City of Atlanta compete globally,” said Mayor Reed. “The challenges facing cities in the United States are not unique, and our nation’s most successful leaders will develop creative and forward-thinking solutions to their local and regional problems by employing a global perspective and creating lasting partnerships.”
Earlier today, Mayor Reed joined George McCarthy, Director of Metropolitan Opportunity for the Ford Foundation; Victor d’Allant, CEO of Dallant Networks; and Leila Janah, CEO of Samasource, for a discussion about social and economic opportunity/inequality during a workshop hosted in partnership with The Ford Foundation titled “The Just City.”
During the conversation, the panelists discussed how city leaders can help close the geographic distance gap between low-income neighborhoods and job centers. Mayor Reed talked about the strategic importance of public transportation projects such as the Atlanta BeltLine/Streetcar and the Transportation Investment Act Referendum, which is on the ballot on July 31, 2012.
On Wednesday, Mayor Reed will discuss ways to build successful public-private partnerships to address current and future urban challenges in a workshop moderated by Saskia Sassen, the Robert S. Lynd Professor of Sociology and Co-Chair of The Committee on Global Thought at Columbia University. The other panelists are Vivek Badrinath, CEO Orange Business Services; Pablo Farias, Vice President of the Economic and Assets Program of The Ford Foundation; and Ron Huldai, Mayor of Tel Aviv, Israel.
The business trip, which is not being funded by city taxpayers, also includes formal and informal meetings with elected officials and business leaders from other countries, including the United Kingdom. It marks Mayor Reed’s second visit to Paris since taking office. In 2011, he attended a forum on the “Airports of the Future” where he met with elected officials and Paris airports’ representatives, a meeting that led to the signing of an agreement between Atlanta and Paris to work together to promote both cities’ airports for economic development.
Mayor Reed also participated in France-Atlanta 2011 – a series of French-American events centered on innovation co-presented by the French Consulate General and Georgia Tech.
# # #
For more information about the City of Atlanta, please visit http://www.atlantaga.gov or watch City Channel 26. Follow the City of Atlanta on Facebook and Twitter @City_of_Atlanta. Follow Mayor Reed on Facebook and Twitter @Kasim Reed.