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ATL District 3: Ivory Young


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Leaders in the public sector have plenty of public resources to promote their political views, accomplishments and experience. Often much more can be found in the public record: personal and campaign finance disclosures, expense reports, and business, tax and court filings. Here’s what they show: 

Ivory Lee Young Jr.

Official website

Born: 1962


Ivory Young

Ivory Young

In 2013, Ivory Young filed his Sept. 30 campaign finance report nearly a month late and his Oct. 25 report two months late. He still hasn’t filed a disclosure of personal finances disclosure that was due Sept. 14. He attributes these lapses to the illness of a campaign aide, but it’s not the first time he’s filed such disclosures late or not at all. He’s accumulated 16 unpaid late fees totaling $1,450 since 2003, according to the state ethics commission. The commission had not notified him of the fees, Young said, but he plans to pay them nonetheless once it confirms how much he owes. He noted that many of those disclosures were filed just a few days after the statutory deadline; others came in as much as 16 months late.

The late fees include charges for personal financial disclosures that were never filed with the state commission in 2010, 2012 and 2013. Young said he believed that he only needed to file a disclosure with the Atlanta Ethics Office each February. Georgia law requires elected city and county officials to file a personal financial disclosure with the state annually regardless of additional local disclosure requirements. 

In 2008, The Atlanta Journal-Constitution reported that Young and two other City Council members had solicited tens of thousands of dollars from local businesses to pay for parties and gifts for constituents. Young paid for holiday parties and a Sun ‘N’ Fun Senior Citizen Beach Extravaganza in Clayton County. Critics said the so-called “trust funds” helped council members curry political favor with constituents and would have been better handled by a charitable group.

Young later reported his fund collected $46,245, including donations from real estate investors and developers while he chaired the council’s Zoning Committee, in 2007 and 2008. “They don’t receive favors. They don’t receive any personal treatment or anything,” Young told the AJC at the time. “It doesn’t get them any brownie points when it comes to going through the legislative processes that are required for a rezoning.”

Political career

  • Elected to City Council in a 2001 runoff with 58% of the vote.
  • Re-elected in 2005 by a wafer-thin 30-vote margin over Michael Julian Bond.
  • Re-elected in 2009 with 79% of the vote.
  • Re-elected in 2013 with 75% of the vote.

Committee assignments

  • Community Development/Human Resources
  • Public Safety/Legal Administration
  • Zoning


Business ownership interests

  • None disclosed

Other fiduciary positions

  • None disclosed

Real estate holdings

  • Personal residence appraised for tax purposes at $40,000.

Other investments

  • None disclosed.

Payments from city agencies 

Since 2005, Young has disclosed that his employer won competitively bid contracts from the departments of Aviation, Fire and Watershed Management. Paul Cheeks Architects LLC was also awarded work on construction and renovation of Atlanta Public Schools’ Venetian Hills Elementary and South Atlanta High School.

Friends and Family

Young’s wife, Shalise Steele-Young, works in the mayor’s Office of Human Services. He has recused himself from votes on that office’s funding.

His sister, Vanessa Manley, worked for then-Council Lisa Borders in 2009 and in other city jobs since then. 

Campaign contributions

Donors have given more than $297,000 to Young’s campaign committee since 2000. The breakdown by election cycle:

  • 2001: $37,910
  • 2002-05: $152.552
  • 2006-09: $50,921
  • 2010-13: $58,025 through Oct. 25
  • Reported cash on hand (Oct. 25, 2013): -$12,297

Top donors

Of Young’s $284,000 in itemized contributions, at least $110,000 (39%) came from real-estate and development interests. Construction contractors gave at least $51,000 more and airport concessionaires $21,400.

  • $12,500 Steve & Adam Brock, Brock Built LLC, home builders
  • $11,850 Herman J. Russell Sr. & family, real-estate developer
  • $6,500 Atlantic Station LLC
  • $5,650 The Buckhead Coalition
  • $5,250 Montgomery Watson/Khafra Joint Venture, engineering & project management
  • $4,050 McKenna Long Aldridge LLP, law/lobbying firm
  • $4,000 Trammell Crow Co., real-estate developer
  • $3,250 MHR International, construction management
  • $3,200 Goode Van Slyke Architecture
  • $3,150 Charles Ackerman, CEO Ackerman & Co., commercial real estate firm
  • $3,000 E.R. Mitchell & Co., construction contractor
  • $3,000 National Concessions Management LLC
  • $3,000 The Sembler Co., real-estate developer

Most of the sponsors of a September 2013 fund-raiser for his campaign were real-estate developers and construction interests, including Thrasher Contracting; Midtown West Associates; Chip Drury; Atlantic Station; Archer Western Contractors; Sachin Shailendra; Brock Built; Williams Russell & Johnson Inc.; MWH-Khafra Joint Venture; Egbert Perry of The Integral Group; H. J. Russell Co.; zoning attorney Larry Dingle; Charles Ackerman; Paul Cheeks Architects; Georgia Apartment Association; Edward Bowen; and Michael Ross. The event was hosted by the engineering firm of Williams Russell and Johnson Inc.

Campaign-to-campaign donations

Candidates may make political donations with campaign funds, allowing prolific fund-raisers to share their contributions with other legislators or candidates. Some advocacy groups believe such transfers should be limited to an aggregate of $10,000 per election cycle. Young’s committee made these contributions:

  • 2001: $150
  • 2002-05: $1,750
  • 2006-09: $300

Reported gifts

In 2007 and 2008, Young accepted $46,245 in cash and in-kind donations on behalf of two funds — Senior Citizen Sun’N’Fun and Family Holiday Assistance Trust Fund — administered by his office. Top donors:

  • $6,000 Georgia-Pacific Co.
  • $5,500 Georgia Power Co.
  • $5,000 UPS Foundation
  • $4,000 AGL Resources
  • $3,500 Coca-Cola Co.
  • $3,000 Wayne Mason,. real estate developer
  • $2,500 Sembler Co., real estate developer
  • $2,000 Archer Western Contractors
  • $2,000 CDM Smith, engineering
  • $2,000 Turner Broadcasting

Posted Oct. 29, 2013; updated Dec. 31, 2013





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