EMPLOYEE SPOTLIGHT- Jenise Burks
“Volunteering is a big part of my life outside of work,” says Jenise Burks, Vice President, Franchise Finance at Atlantic Capital. And anyone who has met Jenise knows just how true that statement is.
Since the age of 12, when she was asked to help tutor high school students older than herself, her passion for giving back has always remained constant. Today, she uses her financial expertise to improve lives and further the causes she cares about – both within the local Atlanta community and beyond.
Habitat for Humanity is one organization that Jenise holds close to her heart. As the program has begun to implement financial coaching classes for participants, she has gotten involved by teaching residents how to budget effectively for their new mortgage and maintain a healthy debt-to-income ratio.
“Many of the people who were moving into homes didn’t know how to properly manage their finances, and after a year or so, they were no longer able to keep up with their mortgage,” Jenise explains. “But after starting these classes, there has been a huge increase in program participants who have been able to stay in their homes. It’s something I’m really proud of.”
And Jenise’s commitment to volunteering doesn’t stop there.
She also spends significant time helping out with recruiting for her alma mater, Fisk University, in areas where residents are typically unable to afford college. Her and other alumni have an ongoing tradition of renting a charter bus for high school students, so they can experience a college visit in a way that’s completely free for them.
“A few of the students are now doctors or lawyers, and they still call me to this day,” says Jenise. “To have someone who was not planning to go to college tell me they’re getting their PhD, that’s a special thing.”
With other involvements including the Alpha Kappa Alpha sorority, the Women’s Entrepreneurship Initiative, Buy from a Black Woman, and the NAACP, it’s clear that Jenise has taken on a lot of extra responsibilities. But she’s grateful to work at Atlantic Capital, where a strong commitment to volunteering is embedded within the culture – and where she feels supported in her endeavors.
“At Atlantic Capital, work and volunteering go hand in hand.” Jenise says. “I’ve worked for a few different banks and have never been with one that is so people-focused. While banks will always need to make money, what makes us different is that we do it with our hearts.”
To learn more about Atlantic Capital’s volunteer efforts, visit our Community Impact page.