Kimberly Harper

Kimberly’s journey with Girls Inc. of Greater Atlanta began in 2012 because she was inspired by the energy she felt at the Strong, Smart, and Bold Awards luncheon. She was impressed by the professionalism of the girls there and decided to get more involved. Her initial contributions included bringing STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) education opportunities through virtual and augmented reality activities and securing Synovus' involvement as a financial literacy education partner.

As her love for the organization grew, so did Kimberly’s commitment. Now as a board member and secretary of Girls Inc. of Greater Atlanta, Kimberly continues to make a difference through her work on the Fund Development and STEM Committees. One of the more notable projects she was involved in was dedicating a butterfly garden in memory of Debbie Lynn Randall, the catalyst for Joyce Dunaway Parker to start Girls Inc. of Greater Atlanta to provide a safe space for girls.

For Kimberly, the most rewarding aspect of volunteering is witnessing the girls' excitement when learning something new and watching them grow into Strong, Smart, and Bold individuals. “When they can take the information they have received and use it to uplift and empower another girl, that’s when you know that the work you have put in to develop programming or secure funding for programming and events has been worth it.”

Mentorship has played a pivotal role in Kimberly’s career, and she emphasizes the importance of both formal and informal mentorship when volunteering. Drawing from her experiences as a Human Resources professional, she encourages young women to be information sponges, seek mentors with diverse perspectives and take initiative in fostering mentorship relationships.

When she takes a step back, Kimberly celebrates the incredible progress that has taken place to allow all women in the United States access to pursue education and careers. Acknowledging the bravery and hard work it took to get here only emphasizes the need for women to continue the task of empowering each other. By doing so, they learn how to take advantage of the opportunities available to them and create opportunity for themselves. This support and hard work can allow women of any circumstance to excel beyond what they may have ever believed possible. It’s because of this bold mindset that Kimberly’s favorite female historical figure is Queen Esther from the Bible. She looks up to women, like Esther, who don’t flinch at the sign of a daunting challenge.

Her advice for young women entering male-dominated industries is to remember the unique perspectives women bring to the workplace, especially as they continue to challenge the notion that women must choose between family and leadership in the workplace. She is adamant about pointing out that having the guts to provide a different point of view can be invaluable to one’s career. Doing these things with skill, confidence and clarity will continue to pave the way for generations of women to come.

For Kimberly, celebrating and showcasing success stories of women working in the business world or as entrepreneurs play a huge role in challenging stereotypes and showcasing what is possible. Ultimately, she hopes to encourage future generations of women to embrace their uniqueness, be the best versions of themselves that they can be and have the bravery to take the road less traveled.

Women’s History Month

Girls Inc.

Erin Moore