Kwanza Hall (1971-)

Rep. Kwanza Hall posing with American flag
Rep. Kwanza Hall, December 3, 2020
Courtesy U.S. House of Representatives under public domain

Kwanza Hall, recognized for his leadership as a civil servant and business executive, was elected in 2020 to complete the term of the late U.S. Representative John R. Lewis, civil rights symbol and 17-term congressman. As a public servant, a large portion of his career has been dedicated to social justice and economic opportunity, in which he combines his various professional experiences including a fellowship with the German Marshall Fund and appointments on the Board of Directors for many nonprofits, including the World Affairs Council and the National Center for Civil and Human Rights.

Hall was born on May 1, 1971, in Atlanta, Georgia to the late Leon W. Hall, Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s youngest lieutenant. His mother, Evelyn Cloyd Hall, was a civil rights activist and community organizer originally from Chicago, Illinois. In 1989, he graduated from Benjamin E. Mays High School in Atlanta and attended the Massachusetts Institute of Technology until 1995.

Two years later, he became the IT Senior Project Manager for the Fulton County government. He then briefly worked as the Vice President of Technology for GoodWorks International, a public affairs consulting firm formerly co-chaired by Ambassador Andrew Young. Between 2003 and 2010, Hall served as Director of Business Development at MACTEC Engineering and Consulting, a major engineering, environmental, and construction service provider. Simultaneously, he started his 15-year combined stint on the Atlanta City Council and Atlanta School Board. After serving three years as a member of the Board of Education, he was elected to the City Council for District 2 in 2005 where he stayed for 12 years.

As a council member, he supported key legislation including expanding the beltline overlay and allocating funding for streetscape projects to improve pedestrian safety. In 2011, he was honored for his advocacy for parks and greenspaces by Park Pride, a leading nonprofit organization dedicated to improving parks in Atlanta.  The Atlanta chapter of the American Institute of Architects created the annual Kwanza Hall Award for civic leadership in architectural design in his honor. The following year, 2012, Georgia State University awarded him its highest recognition for leaders who significantly fostered Downtown Atlanta’s arts and cultural scenes, the Pioneer Award. The W.K. Kellogg Foundation also recognized him in 2013 for expanding opportunities for families in an Atlanta neighborhood with the highest concentration of poverty in the southeastern U.S. In 2016, he became the Senior Advisor for Maxwell Stamp, a prominent international economic consultancy aimed at increasing economic growth in underserved areas, where he counseled for three years. He was also a candidate for mayor of Atlanta in 2017.

By winning a special election, he served 33 days between December 2020 and January 2021 as a U.S. Democratic Representative for Georgia’s 5th district, and despite the time limit, was able to vote on several critical pieces of legislation, including over $3 trillion in combined COVID Relief, and Omnibus and military budgets. He also requested $55 million for transit-oriented development on Atlanta’s Southside, cosponsored 14 additional bills, and advocated 18 times on the floor of Congress.

In early 2022, Hall was a candidate for Lieutenant Governor of Georgia. Later that year, he became the Managing Partner at Homz Global, a national housing company addressing housing affordability, and the CEO and Managing Partner at Chattahoochee Trails Park and Water Hub, which provides water reclamation and recreational opportunities along the Chattahoochee Riverfront.