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Meet Lisa Clarke of ATL Search Group, LLC

Today we’d like to introduce you to Lisa Clarke

Hi Lisa, thanks for joining us today. We’d love for you to start by introducing yourself.
I was born in New York, but was raised in Jucuapa, El Salvador during their civil war by a single Mom, my Grandmother and Nana . I came back to the US (New York) with my Mother when I was 14 years old and lived in a car garage that was converted into an apartment. We spent our first winter in NY without any heat. My clothes and furniture were donated from a Catholic Charity. My Mother went back to El Salvador when I was 15. I was left alone and had to grow up really quickly. I put myself through H.S. and College while working a full time job after school. I used the money I earned to support my family back in El Salvador. I am happy to say that I am the first one in my family to graduate from a college here in the US. I always enjoyed helping others and worked with charities such as The Ronald McDonald House and I volunteered the Make a Wish Foundation. This is when I got into the staffing industry.

I loved helping people find jobs. After successfully creating start-up offices for other businesses, I decided to found my own company, ATL Search Group, in 2017. My company grossed over a million dollars in less than two years. I started my company with only $325.00 and a big dream. My focus has been to volunteer in the Hispanic community. I have helped as many people as I could thrive and find jobs that allowed them to build their skill sets. I love to see people prosper. Over the years our community has grown in economic and political power. We have tried to improve conditions for those in north and south Georgia. I continue to look for ways to grow and develop, personally and as a community. I have received many awards for the work I am doing in the Diversity and Inclusion space. I volunteered as ALPFA President to bring a national asset to members of the Hispanic business community here in Georgia. I was proud to have been named Hispanic Business Women of the Year and one of the 50 Most Influential Latinos in Georgia by the Georgia Hispanic Chamber of Commerce. I am also a graduate from Leadership Georgia, Class of 2019 and a member of Leadership Atlanta, Class of 2022. I am also a past member of the Emory-Goizueta Foundation Grant Advisory Board, current member of the Gwinnett County Schools Advisory Board for the Hispanic Mentoring Program and member of the Georgia Hispanic Chamber of Commerce Cultivating Leadership Class of 2017. I am a Board Member and past President and Co-Founder of EME de Mujer. EME de Mujer is the women’s advisory board for the Georgia Hispanic Chamber of Commerce. In the role of President of EME de Mujer, I was responsible for programming that serves hundreds of Latina corporate leaders and small business owners through education, mentoring and empowerment programs and an annual women’s conference.

Would you say it’s been a smooth road, and if not what are some of the biggest challenges you’ve faced along the way?
Not being able to speak the English language was one of the first struggles I worked hard to overcome. I had to learn how to make difficult, life impacting decisions at a very young age; like when I decided to stay alone in the U.S, when my family returned to El Salvador. I had a lot of responsibility here in the U.S, by myself. I worked really hard to learn English and graduate from high school. I had some guidance when it came to whether or not to enroll in college. I had the help of my high school teacher, Mr. Steve Lombardi, who helped with my college application and encouraged me to complete a college degree. I also worked every chance I had. I wanted to make sure that my family in El Salvador had money and I had to pay my own bills. I’ve made some mistakes along the way, but learned a lot of lessons to get to where I am today. The mistakes made and lessons learned led me to find my true calling. Because of the way I grew up, my passion has been to make a change in and to better the lives of those who have been under-represented.

Appreciate you sharing that. What should we know about ATL Search Group, LLC?
ATL Search Group is a 100% woman-owned, certified minority Staffing company with over 35 years of industry experience in staffing, executive search and human resource management specializing in helping employers with Diversity and Inclusion initiatives, placing bilingual talent in professional, skilled and unskilled positions. We source well-qualified staff that requires minimal training. We help folks find their next career, not just a job. We are known in the industry as a gateway to success for Hispanic professionals. I have worked hard to be a trusted resource for both employers and employees. We understand people markets, rates and trades in a way that others don’t. Our reach is not just sourcing, but understanding markets in Latin countries as well. Brand wise, we have serviced major corporate and sports constituents here in the region. From direct hires to temps, we can staff an office, C-Suite or light industrial factory.

We all have a different way of looking at and defining success. How do you define success?
Success for me is helping others achieve their goals and being a role model for them. Knowing that if I can do it, so can they. Never giving up no matter how hard it gets. Being able to lead and open doors for others. The greatest of all is knowing that my daughters see the potential of what you can be. Even, with beginnings as humble as mine. My daughters know my life story and they have seen me work from not knowing English in a foreign country on my own, to starting and growing a multi-million dollar business on my own. Overall, I am happy being a Mother and a role model for my three daughters and legions of Hispanic students I have helped employ and mentor.

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