Kara Keene Cooper brings more than 18 years of economic development and marketing experience to Atlanta BeltLine Inc. (ABI) as their Director of Economic Development. She executes economic development initiatives to empower the more than 6,000 BeltLine businesses and markets the corridor as a premier business destination. Prior to ABI, she oversaw business attraction and existing industry expansion/retention at the Decide DeKalb Development Authority. Before that she focused on commercial property owner and business development for the Cumberland Community Improvement District (CID), home to the Atlanta Braves mixed-use stadium project The Battery. She is on the Board of Managers for the Annie E. Casey Foundation’s Pittsburgh Yards development site in historic southwest Atlanta. She is a graduate of Leadership Atlanta’s LEAD program, the Urban Land Institute’s Center for Leadership, the Atlanta Regional Commission’s Regional Leadership Institute, and the New Leaders Council. She was named a Power 30 Under 30 for the City of Atlanta and was a 40 Under 40 nominee for the University of Georgia’s Alumni Association. She is very active with Urban Land Institute where she serves on the committee for their annual fundraiser, a real estate development awards of excellence dinner. Cooper earned a bachelor’s degree in Business Administration from the University of Georgia and a Master of Public Policy from Georgia State University.