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Employee Spotlight: Beverly Burks

Recent News | April 18, 2024

A headshot of Beverly Burks, regional director of philanthropy and public relations for National Church Residences and mayor of Clarkston, Georgia.

Overseeing community engagement, fundraising, and communication efforts for an entire state takes someone with a lot of passion, creativity, and local connections. Beverly Burks has plenty of each.

Beverly is the regional director of philanthropy and public relations for National Church Residence’s affordable housing units in the state of Georgia. The role requires someone who can support seniors in a variety of ways, and Beverly has a long history of success.

An Impressive Professional Journey

Everyone’s journey is different. Some people have a clear vision of what they want to do early on in their life. Like many others, Beverly originally planned to work in a completely different field than where she is now.

“The funny thing is that my degree was in information systems,” Beverly said. “When I was in college, I interned with IBM. I always encourage students to do internships, because I recognized that I did not want to program when I did mine.”

Despite her realization, Beverly still excelled at information systems work. She managed two teams that worked on projects for IBM clients like the PGA, NBA, and Victoria’s Secret before transitioning to sales as a solutions manager and business consultant. 

Beverly excelled at IBM, but a focus on supporting her community led her to take a job as the executive director of the National Pan-Hellenic Council, a collaborative council of nine historically African American fraternities and sororities. She led relationship development efforts with major organizations and government agencies. Her work with President Barack Obama’s office, former Secretary of Education Arne Duncan, and other relationships gave her a policy background that would help with future endeavors. 

Beverly eventually left the National Pan-Hellenic Council for a new industry – healthcare. As community engagement director for the Fulton-DeKalb Hospital Authority, Beverly oversaw more than 60 non-profit organizations dedicated to serving residents in the greater Atlanta area. She handled grants, fostered key relationships, and led several other programs dedicated to supporting seniors. 

“I’ve had a very interesting journey to get here,” Beverly said. “It’s those transferable skillsets that have helped me throughout my journey.”

A Personal and Professional Connection to Serving Seniors

With several notable stops along her journey, Beverly added to her impressive resume when she joined National Church Residences in March of 2022. The skillsets she gained along the way played a notable role in this transition, as Beverly’s ability to develop relationships helped guide her latest position.

“The funny thing is that we sponsored a lot of the events for National Church Residences at my old job,” Beverly explained. “I had a relationship with the person who used to have my role, so I was familiar with the company and had a good understanding of its purpose and meaning.”

Beverly also had a personal connection to the importance of supporting seniors’ wellbeing. At one point, Beverly was acting as a caregiver for her mother, grandmother, and godfather at the same time. According to her, this experience made her very aware of seniors’ needs and instilled a passion for helping them enjoy life.

Based on Beverly’s skills and personal connections, the opportunity was an excellent fit. Beverly’s current role requires someone who can handle everything from securing funding to project development for the National Church Residence’s affordable housing properties in Georgia. Thankfully, the skills she acquired over her career allow her to support seniors in several ways.

“My responsibility is to find those funds, identify the gaps, and figure out how we can minimize those gaps that many of our residents face,” Beverly said. “At the end of the day, that’s what we’re here to do – to help our seniors thrive. To enjoy their time. We’re providing them with a wonderful place to live where we can coordinate activities for them to enjoy, and make sure that they love life.”

A Dedication to Community

Beverly’s dedication to serving others extends beyond her work at National Church Residences. In fact, she has another notable role where she plays a direct role in improving her community.

Beverly is the mayor of Clarkston, a city less than half an hour northeast of Atlanta. She was elected in 2020 and has the distinction of representing the most diverse city in the United States. Clarkston has a sizable refugee community, providing a safe and welcome place for waves of people hailing from several countries.

“We have people who speak over 70 different languages and dialects in a 1.8 square mile region,” Beverly said. “Ethiopia has nine different dialects, and there are four different tribes of Congolese in my area.”

In addition to her mayoral duties, Beverly found another way to support members of Clarkston’s refugee community. Beverly is a breast cancer survivor, and even ran her mayoral campaign while she was fighting the disease. As part of her survivors’ ministry, Beverly would take refugee women to their doctor’s appointments and helped them get the care they deserved.

“Because of my experience as a breast cancer survivor, I knew statewide what they were entitled to,” Beverly explained. “I knew what they could and couldn’t have. When I recognized that many of them were not getting things that they should receive in terms of additional support and surgical treatment, I would go. I don’t know a lick of Congolese, but I would be people’s health translator.”

Worlds Colliding

Whether she’s supporting seniors or her constituents, Beverly is focused on what she can do better for her community. Her professional journey has given her the skills and relationships necessary to empower both the residents of Clarkston and seniors across Georgia. These duties admittedly mean she doesn’t have a lot of free time, but it’s a responsibility she relishes.

“I just give to my community – that’s the bottom line,” Beverly said. “It’s a blessing to make a difference every day. That’s what I love to do. My worlds collide in a beautiful tapestry that I love.”

Looking for a job where you can make an impact in your community? View our senior living job opportunities and start your next career.

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