Nathaniel Smith

Nathaniel serves as Director of Partnerships and Research for Equitable Development at Emory University’s Office of University - Community Partnerships (OUCP). In this capacity Nathaniel facilitates engaged scholarship opportunities with external and community organizations to achieve balanced, sustainable and inclusive development throughout the metropolitan Atlanta region.

Nathaniel has been sanctioned by Emory University to continue his efforts to support the realization of an equitable metropolitan Atlanta via his role as Founder and Convener of a multi-sectored, racial and generational network of regional stakeholders called Partnership for Southern Equity (PSE).

Prior to joining Emory Nathaniel served as Public Policy Manager at the Atlanta Neighborhood Development Partnership (ANDP). His advocacy, research and coalition building activities supported the creation of many innovative policies that encourage the equitable distribution of mixed income communities throughout the metropolitan Atlanta Region. Among them were Georgia’s first anti-predatory lending (DeKalb County), inclusionary zoning (Fulton County) and local housing trust fund (City of Atlanta) ordinances.

Nathaniel’s research and advocacy activities where also instrumental in the ratification of a 15% set aside of Atlanta Beltline Tax Allocation District (TAD) dollars for the development and maintenance of affordable workforce housing within the Atlanta BeltLine Planning Area. Because of this policy $250 million dollars will be allocated to this effort over the 25 year lifespan of the Atlanta BeltLine TAD.

Empowered by the unified vision and voices realized through its regional organizing efforts, PSE pushes for policies and actions that promote equity and inclusive prosperity in metropolitan Atlanta.   Nathaniel’s vision and leadership has guided the creation of this emerging force for shared prosperity in the region. 

Among PSE’s notable accomplishments where the creation the Atlanta Regional Commission’s Social Equity Advisory Committee; supporting the creation of the nations first “Equitable Development Plan” for a large scale neighborhood transformation project – The Atlanta Beltline; convening the inaugural Equity Atlanta Forum on the equitable utilization of Federal Stimulus Funding in metro Atlanta as well as its supporting document, co-written by PolicyLink, “Recovering Stronger: Building an Inclusive Metro Atlanta Economy, and the development of  the Atlanta Regional Commission’s (ARC) Equitable Target Areas (ETA) mapping to promote and measure equitable transportation/infrastructure planning efforts.

Mr. Smith holds a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Urban Studies from Morehouse College. Nathaniel received his Masters of Science degree from the Robert J. Milano School for Management and Urban Policy at the New School for Social Research. While attending Morehouse, Nathaniel received the prestigious Woodrow Wilson Fellowship for Public Policy and International Affairs. During his matriculation through the Milano School Nathaniel received the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development Fellowship.

Among his many acknowledgments, Mr. Smith was selected for the National Congress for Community Economic Development (NCCED) 2000 Emerging Leaders Program; the Outstanding Young Person of Atlanta Award in 2003, Georgia Trend Magazine’s 40 under 40 list in 2006 (cover), The Atlanta Business Chronicle’s “Up and Comers” List in 2006, and the 2007 Atlanta Housing Association of Neighborhood Based Developers (AHAND) 2007 Affordable Housing Champion Award.

Mr. Smith is a graduate of the Regional Leadership Institute (RLI) class of 2004; the 2005 Inaugural class of Leadership Atlanta’s L.E.A.D Atlanta program for Young Professionals; the 2006 Inaugural Class of Georgia Stand-Up’s Atlanta Civic Leadership Network Institute (CLNI); the 2006 class of the Faith and the City Leadership Institute; a recent Leadership Atlanta class of 2009 graduate, and a 2009 Graduate of the Geor- gia Academy for Economic Development. Nathaniel was awarded the German Mar- shall Fund of America’s Marshall Memorial Fellowship (MMF) in 2009 and was recently selected to participate in Cohort II of the National Urban Fellows (NUF) American Leaders of Change program.

Mr. Smith currently serves as an advisor to several local and national organizations and policymakers. Additionally, Nathaniel serves on several boards and advisory committees including the City of Atlanta Beltline TAD Advisory Committee (Vice-Chair), The Civic League for Regional Atlanta, Sustainable Atlanta, Atlanta Technical College Initiative for Males (Chair), Georgia Stand-Up, Atlanta Regional Commission’s Social Equity Advisory Committee and the City of Atlanta Mayors Office of Weed and Seed Steering Committee (Policy Committee Chair).

Nathaniel Smith Founder, Partnership for Southern Equity (PSE)

Nathaniel Smith

Founder, Partnership for Southern Equity (PSE)

Atlanta, Georgia, United States

Civic Engagement
Facilitation & Strategic Planning
Housing & Community Design
Career Stage
  • Fellow
  • Next Gen
  • Mid-Career
  • Bridge
  • Encore
  • Emeritus