Partnership for Southern Equity Grows with addition of Several New Team Members

The Partnership for Southern Equity (PSE) is pleased to announce the following individuals to our team. We are always proud to welcome people whose talents and ideas will make a huge impact on our work. Their appointments are noted below.

Simone Heath, Director, Data, Research & Policy

Simone Heath brings to PSE a strong background as a skilled urban planner and designer with an expertise in data collection and visualization and innovative community engagement techniques. As director, she will build and maximize PSE’s data, research and policy muscle. She has worked on a range of projects; from neighborhood plans to parking and multimodal studies. Simone will leverage her comprehensive understanding of community planning and experience to bridge diverse segments of communities and create context specific solutions.

Simone holds a bachelor’s degree in Landscape Architecture from the University of Kentucky and master’s degrees in Town and Country Engineering from Tongji University in Shanghai, and in City and Regional Planning from the Georgia Institute of Technology.

Sarah Al-Khayyal (She/They), Policy Manager

Born and raised in the heart of Atlanta, Sarah Al-Khayyal joins PSE’s Data, Research & Policy team as a community-based creative and policy manager. Equipped with a creative mind and critical eye, Sarah strives to steward place and shepherd change through a design thinking framework.

Sarah holds a bachelor’s degree (magna cum laude) in Sustainable Development from Columbia University and a master’s degree in City and Regional Planning from the Georgia Institute of Technology.

When she’s not working, Sarah enjoys urban sketching, home improvement projects, and hanging out with her cats.

Tarccara (Cara) Hodge, Manager, Just Health

Tarccara Hodge will manage PSE’s Just Health portfolio, designed to provide expertise and technical assistance to advance health equity, strengthen engagement and improve access to healthcare resources within rural communities, where too often such resources are either limited or nonexistent. She will provide management for the Just Health Circle and Just Health Academy. Tarccara has worked with Just Health since August 2021 as a consultant supporting the Just Solutions United Healthcare project.

Prior to joining PSE, she served as Recruitment Coordinator and Community Research Associate at the University of Georgia’s Center for Family Research, where she worked on the African American Men and Boys Project. Before moving to Atlanta, Tarccara worked in rural Georgia in partnership with the Emory Prevention Research Center as a Health Coach, assisting low-wealth families in public housing with making their home environment more supportive of healthy eating and physical activity.

Tarccara holds a bachelor’s degree in Sociology from Albany State University.

John Roberts, Jr., Manager, YES! For Equity

A native of Guyton, Georgia, John Roberts, Jr. brings to PSE over 11 years of professional experience working in youth advocacy and community organizing. He will manage PSE’s YES! For Equity efforts, designed to support the development of youth as civic leaders and to support adults and organizations to change harmful policies and practices that negatively affect youth.

John has a passion and commitment for working with families and local residents of underserved communities. John’s most recent work in Boston, Massachusetts has afforded him the opportunity to mentor young people through the vehicle of entrepreneurship which can, in turn, impact their communities with valuable resources to expand their outlook on education, social capital, and professional development.

John holds a bachelor’s degree in English from Morehouse College. In his spare time, John enjoys playing golf, fishing, football, and spending time with his family.

John resides in Dunwoody, Georgia with his wife Tachera and his two sons John III and James.