BOARD & STAFF
Attorney, Rainey & Phillips
Jimmy Ellis is the son of Jim & Billie Ellis. Jim is the founder of the Jim Ellis Automotive Dealerships Group, a family owned and operated business, proudly serving Atlantans since 1971.
Jimmy became the President and CEO of Jim Ellis Automotive Group in January of 2015. Prior to that, Jimmy was the Vice President and Chief Operating Officer for 20 years. During that time, the Jim Ellis Automotive Group grew to 18 dealerships, consisting of 14 brands and a Collision Center. The brands represented by Jim Ellis are: Alfa Romeo, Audi, Buick, Chevrolet, Genesis, GMC, Hyundai, Kia, Maserati, Mazda, Porsche, Toyota, Volkswagen, and Volvo.
Jim Ellis founded the first dealership, Jim Ellis Volkswagen, in 1971 while Jimmy was still in High School at Southwest DeKalb. Jimmy began working after school in the service shop cleaning, moving vehicles, and performing light mechanical work After graduation, Jimmy worked full time as a technician and began the career path that took him through most of the dealership departments and several positions that gave him experience in Sales and Management. At the age of 28, he became General Manager of a newly acquired Porsche-Audi Dealership in Tucker, Georgia. From there, Jimmy grew and advanced in the business until the mid-nineties when Mr. Jim Ellis asked Jimmy to take on the Chief Operating Officer role. When Jimmy took over in 1995, the company had grown to five dealerships representing five different automotive brands.
Josh Harrison is an experienced CPA who has worked in the real estate and construction industry his entire career. After graduating from Wake Forest University with a B.S. in Accounting, he joined the Atlanta audit practice of Arthur Andersen LLP. During his seven years at Andersen, Josh advised both private and public real estate and construction clients on numerous initial public offerings, secondary equity transactions, public and private bond issuances, and private equity placement transactions and grew to love the real estate development industry.
Josh joined Pattillo Industrial Real Estate in August 2001 as Vice President-Finance & Treasurer, named Chief Financial Officer in 2006, named Chief Operating Officer in 2016, and was named President in 2019.
During his tenure at Pattillo, Josh secured financing transactions in excess of $1.0 billion including the closing of the company’s largest unsecured line of credit in December 2008 at the height of the economic crisis. Josh recently led the Pattillo Industrial Real Estate team responsible for the relocation of their corporate headquarters to their new home in the heart of Chamblee. This project, Trackside, is a transit oriented development located on a former parking lot owned by MARTA, and stands as the first Class A office development in the City of Chamblee.
Matthew Oppenheimer currently serves as Director of Acquisitions for Halpern Enterprises. In this role, Matthew is responsible for sourcing, underwriting and performing due diligence on all new acquisitions for the company. Matthew also works closely with Halpern’s development team on all ground up development pursuits. Matthew joined Halpern as regional property manager before serving as an analyst and associate on the company’s development team.
Prior to Halpern, Matthew was a leasing agent with Glenwood Development and an analyst with Rosenberg Capital Advisors, focused on retail property acquisitions. He began his real estate career on the retail leasing team at Colliers International.
Matthew earned a Master of Science in Real Estate from Georgia State University and a Bachelor of Arts in Real Estate Finance from Indiana University.
Matthew serves as the Treasurer for the CID, and is the appointed representative of the City of Doraville. Matthew was also part of the formation effort for the CID, where he worked closely with fellow property owners and consultants to create the CID in 2019. Halpern Enterprises has owned property in Doraville dating back to 1965, and currently owns seven shopping centers along Buford Highway, including Pinetree Plaza, Northwoods Plaza, and Pinetree West. As long term owners of property in Doraville, Halpern is committed to playing a role in shaping the future of this area.
Mario Evans is a native of Atlanta, Georgia. He started his professional career with the Georgia Department of Transportation in 1992-1998. He started his career with DeKalb County in October of 1999. He has spent all of the past 20 years at DeKalb-Peachtree Airport (PDK). Mario started at the airport as the Airport Noise/ Environmental Officer where he handled all noise complaints, environmental matters, computer administrator, community relations and risk management. He was then promoted to Assistant Airport Director in 2010.
As the Assistant Airport Director he was responsible for the day-to-day operations, airport maintenance (airside & landside), security, and construction administration. Additionally he was responsible for submitting and executing the operating and capital improvement program budgets. Mario was appointed the Interim Airport Director in April 2015 and was hired as the Airport Director in December 2015.
Mario is a Past President of the Georgia Airports Association (2014-2015) representing Georgia’s 103 public use airports and was the Chair of the Legislative Committee (2013-2018) for all aviation affairs at the State Legislature.
“I find my work as Airport Director similar to that of governing a city such as Chamblee or Brookhaven in trying to provide all of the necessary transportation needs. I am very proud to work alongside other CID leaders to develop a great community for people to live, work, and relax.“
Mario has a Bachelor’s Degree from Tuskegee University. He is also a Certified Member of the American Association of Airport Executives; member of the Southeast Chapter of the American Association of Airport Executives.
Lynne Foresman has been Litigation Manager at Sonic Automotive since 2011.
Sonic Automotive is a Fortune 500 company and the fifth largest automotive retailer in the United States. Sonic Automotive operates over 100 dealerships in 13 states and 25 major metropolitan markets. In 1997 Sonic purchased Dyer and Dyer Volvo in Chamblee and opened Global Mini in 2011. The company also owns Global BMW and Land Rover of South Atlanta in the Atlanta area, as well as North Point Volvo in Alpharetta.
Prior to joining Sonic Automotive, Lynne worked at Compass Group USA, Inc. from 1998-2010 and was Vice President of Litigation. Compass Group is a multi-billion-dollar contract food and support services company, providing food services in various business sectors including business and industry, education, sports and entertainment, healthcare and vending. Compass also offers services in remote locations such as logging camps and oil drilling operations, as well as providing world-class venues, museums and performing arts centers. Its Morrison Healthcare sector is headquartered in Atlanta and grew from a small restaurant, known as Morrison’s Cafeteria, into a leading national food and nutrition services company.
In these roles Lynne has played a key role in negotiations on a variety of levels, budgeting, and financial reporting. She has developed various processes and procedures for improved efficiencies and cost savings.
Lynne has a Bachelor of Arts in English from Marywood University.
As Senior Vice President, Greg’s role reaches many facets of the company including analyzing investments and redevelopment of the existing portfolio, identifying new acquisition and development opportunities and representing Selig in the business community.
Before joining Selig in 2019, Lewis founded and ran Innovative Roofing Group for 15 years. He sold the company in 2018. Its partial client roster included CBRE, JLL, Colliers, Jamestown, DDR, Lincoln Property Group, Simon Property Group, Avison Young and Home Depot.
Prior to founding Innovative Roofing Group, Lewis worked in Commercial Real Estate roles with Capital Commercial Real Estate, Dewberry Capital and ICG.
Greg is very involved in the community both professionally and civically. He is an active member of Building Owners and Management Association (BOMA), International Council of Shopping Centers (ICSC), National Roofing Contractors Association (NRCA), Institute of Real Estate Management (IREM), and Metro Atlanta Chamber (MAC). Previous board appointments include Jewish Federation of Greater Atlanta and The Epstein School. He currently holds board positions at Woodward Academy, Selig Enterprises and Roofers Insurance Trust.
Greg completed his Bachelor of Business Administration at The University of Arizona and attended Woodward Academy.
Outside of work, Greg enjoys spending time with his wife Erica and two children Gabrielle and Harrison. He enjoys traveling, snow skiing and is an avid offshore tournament fisherman.
Gary Matthews is a principal of Parkside Partners and has over 25 years of experience in design, construction and real estate development. Gary oversees the development division and is responsible for all phases of the ground up and adaptive reuse projects including acquisition due diligence; project entitlements; overseeing the design and construction teams; and, construction management of the tenant build-outs. Other responsibilities include tracking and controlling budgets; managing project schedules and integrating all of the Parkside business units. He graduated from the Georgia Institute of Technology with a Bachelor of Science in Civil Engineering and earned his Master of Business Administration from Georgia State University. He previously served on Chamblee’s Rail Trail Extension Committee and the Formation Board for the Chamblee Doraville CID.
Parkside purchased its first property in Chamblee in 2007 and has completed 14 projects within/adjacent to the Chamblee Doraville CID including the AGL Service Center, 5256 Pechtree, 3401 Malone, Parkside Chamblee, Mercy Park, Trackside, Skyland Trail Adolescent Campus and Eastside Chamblee.
Vince Riggio founded Trinity Development Group in 1996. The commercial development firm focuses on revitalizing problem properties others have ignored or overlooked. Vince’s success lies in his ability to work collaboratively with local governments and neighborhood residents to navigate politics and align each property with the needs of the community.
Vince knew he wanted to be a real estate developer at the age of 14 after watching his father redevelop an apartment complex in St. Louis, MO. He was fascinated by the interdependent relationship between people and property. By the time Vince was 19, he had earned his broker’s and real estate licenses and was selling residential and income-producing properties on the beaches between Clearwater and St. Petersburg, FL.
Prior to founding Trinity Development Group, Vince spent six years as a land broker for Lee Arnold and Associates, representing sellers in distressed property transactions. He was one of two founding members of RAM Development Group, a southeast development firm. Additionally, Vince led the retail expansion of 20 drug stores including Eckerd, CVS, and Walgreens; five Checkers fast-food restaurants; and 18 Olsen Morgan Tire stores.
Vince is committed to responsible development that serves communities, investors, the environment, and the larger human condition. He and Trinity give generously to Boy Scouts of America, Partners Against Domestic Violence, Wellsprings Living, Georgia Boy Choir, Young Life, Southern Land Conservation Land Trust, Habitat for Humanity, and City of Refuge.Vince is passionate about serving his community and enjoys mountain biking, snow skiing, and flying. He and his wife of 29 years, Cinda, spend time in Colorado and Atlanta, GA.
A partner with Lexion Strategies, Malaika Rivers develops and leads efforts that create value for commercial real estate owners, developers and governments alike.
Malaika guides clients on public-private partnerships that build infrastructure critical to commercial real estate. She was a leader in the creation of the Atlanta Braves’ $1.3B ballpark and mixed-use development and has led projects benefiting CRE investors, REITs, local and state governments, civic associations and more.
An expert on Community Improvement Districts (CIDs), Malaika advises private and public sector clients on how these powerful tools build sustainable, long term value. She spent more than two decades at the helm of Georgia’s first CID, successfully leveraging $140M in commercial real estate value into more than $2B in transportation infrastructure improvements. This helped catalyze the submarket to grow $3B in real estate value. Malaika currently leads the Chamblee Doraville CID and guides other real estate investors and government clients in similar capacities.
Malaika is the co-author of forward-thinking research on public-private strategies to build the next generation of public infrastructure. She is the co-author with Georgia Tech researchers of the first report quantifying CIDs’ impact and reimagining approaches that benefit both traditional real estate interests as well as industries emerging in real estate development.
Kel-Asia Chamblee is a Program Coordinator with Lexicon Strategies, specializing in CID administrative support services. Kel-Asia works closely with the Board of Directors, coordinates specialized professional service providers, and provides project research and analytical support.
Kel-Asia is a 2021 graduate of the one of the country’s premier HBCUs, Clark Atlanta University, where she graduated with a Bachelor of Arts in Philosophy with a concentration in Pre-Law. A Scholar Activist for the Joseph and Evelyn Lowery Institute, Kel-Asia was at the forefront of pressing social needs, including fighting food insecurity within the Atlanta University Center.
Kel-Asia brings curiosity, passion, and dedication to her work ethic. She has become so interested in CIDs as development tools that she intends to focus her future legal practice on them.