Special Event – Solving Metro-Atlanta’s Mobility Needs – 7 pm, February 21, 2019

An  educational forum where transportation and public policy experts explore different approaches for solving Metropolitan Atlanta’s mobility needs.   

FR-MobilityForum Press Release  

Hosted by Franklin Roundtable and WJBB Radio Talk Show Host J. Gregory Howard

Location: 799 Roswell Street Marietta, Georgia

Time: 7 to 9 pm

Metro Atlanta has long been notorious for traffic congestion.  The question commuters and policy makers alike want answered is how to solve it.  Thursday evening February 21 six presenters offer their analyses and remedies.  After presenting they will dialogue with six panelist who are engaged in public policy and/or transportation issues.

Time permitting, the floor will then be opened to questions and comments from the audience.

Special Guest Speaker:

Baruch Feigenbaum, assistant director of transportation policy at the Reason Foundation, a nonprofit think tank.  Mr. Feigenbaum has a diverse background researching and implementing transportation issues including revenue and finance, public-private partnerships, highways, transit, high-speed rail, ports, intelligent transportation systems, land use, and local policymaking.


Defining the Problem

Mike Lowry is a startup mentor with the Advanced Technology Development Center (ATDC) at Georgia Tech, helping to commercialize new technologies. Mr. Lowry’s background includes 30 years in the software industry, specializing in large-scale database management systems.  He was formerly a CIO of Simmons Company, a Fortune 500 manufacturing company, and Director of Bell Operating Company Marketing for Oracle.  He has also founded startups in micro-optics and in remote desktop services.  Mr. Lowry is active in the Alpharetta Rotary Club and is a Georgia Tech alumnus.

Defining a Solution

Richard Arena is a Franklin Roundtable board member and co-chairman of its County-State Watch Task Force.  Retired from the corporate world, Richard is the former president of Impact Consulting, where his clients included: The Coca Cola Company, The Kroger Company, Textile Management Associates, Sophus Berendsen PLC, Starnet, ECS, Inc., Clayton Miller Hospitality Carpeting, and Mohawk Industries. Prior to forming Impact Consulting Richard was Director of Marketing and New Product R&D for Kleen-Tex Industries, Inc., a global textile manufacturing company.

Transit Oriented Development

Jacob Vallo is the Senior Director of Transit Oriented Development and Real Estate for MARTA. Mr. Vallo previously served in investment management/ private equity, investment banking and commercial real estate development roles for 19 years in the private sector. Notably, he formed the $110 million Westside Future Fund with capital invested from some of the largest Atlanta companies and high net worth individuals. This social impact fund is focused on the redevelopment of neighborhoods around the new Mercedes Benz Stadium in Atlanta. Prior to the Westside Future Fund, he held the position of Vice President of Urban Development of the Southeast Region at the Rockefeller Group, the former family office real estate group of the Rockefeller Family. He has also owned and operated his own advisory firm, Amsterdam Capital, which advised a billion-dollar family office on its real estate investments and consulted on large land developments, including the former General Motors Manufacturing Plant in Doraville, GA, where he led the initial financing of the project and also worked on the financing of Third Rail Studios, the film/TV studio which is on a long-term lease to Netflix.

Unclogging the Arteries

Travis Klavohn is the Managing Partner of Klavohn Consulting, a firm whose mission is to make great organizations even better by providing world-class client service in employee benefits, data analytics, and innovation.

Mr. Klavohn has over 20 years of experience in employee benefits, workforce management, data analytics, technology, and corporate strategy. Prior to Klavohn Consulting, Travis started and led a data analytics practice for a Fortune 100 company. His prior professional experience includes positions at leading corporations such as Xerox Corporation and UnitedHealth Group.

Technology Driven Solutions

Dr. Steve Dickerson, Professor Emeritus at Georgia Tech and founder of RideCell, LLC.  Dr. Dickerson is a board member of the Atlanta Transit Link Authority (ATL), representing District 3.  Dr. Dickerson was a professor in the George W. Woodruff School of Mechanical Engineering at Georgia Tech until his retirement in 1996. He has founded several different successful robotics companies, including the Modnar Corporation, DVT Corporation, CAMotion, Inc., RideCell, LLC, and SoftWear Automation, Inc.

Ridecell provides more efficient use of transportation resources and improved customer experience through using advanced communication techniques between vehicles and their drivers. SoftWear, his other early-stage venture, is working to introduce disruptive solutions in garment cutting and sewing.



Benita Dodd – Vice President, Georgia Public Policy Foundation



Steve Brown – Former Mayor of Peachtree City and former Chairman Fayette County Board of Commissioners


Marty Dorazewski – Retired Director of Strategic Planning for Siemens Energy and Automation Inc.


Ron Sifen – Well known in Metro Atlanta as a knowledgeable community advocate on transportation.


Alicia Adams – Field Director, Americans for Prosperity- Georgia