2018 Commencement Speaker

Bill Bolling

Founder, Atlanta Community Food Bank


Bill Bolling served as executive director of the Atlanta Community Food Bank (ACFB) since founding the organization in 1979 until June 2015. Over the span of 36 years, he led the ACFB's distribution of more than half a billion pounds of food and grocery products through a network of more than 600 local and regional partner nonprofit organizations that feed the hungry across 29 Georgia counties. As a charter member of Feeding America—the national network of food banks—Bill was instrumental in the start-up of food banks across the country.

Bill currently serves as board chair and senior advisor of Food Well Alliance and board chair of the Georgia Association of Food Banks. In addition, he serves on the Atlanta Falcons Advisory Board, the Georgia Chamber of Commerce, the Regional Commission on Homelessness, and the Nonprofit Advisory Committee of the Andrew Young School at Georgia State University. He is founder of the Atlanta Housing Forum—begun in 1988—and continues to serve as moderator of the Regional Housing Forum. He is past chair of the Board of the Regional Leadership Forum (now the Regional Civic League) and the State of Georgia Housing Trust Fund Commission.

He is a frequent speaker on topics related to hunger, poverty, regionalism, affordable housing, and public policy reform. His skills in bridging various public sectors have made him a leader in strengthening the community to serve those most in need. Prior to his association with ACFB, he served as director of community ministries for St. Luke's Episcopal Church in Atlanta.

Georgia Trend Magazine named Bolling their 2012 Georgian of the Year, and in January 2015, he joined Georgia Trend’s Most Influential Hall of Fame. His recent awards include the 2015 Dan Sweat Award presented by Central Atlanta Progress, the 2015 Heroes, Saints and Legends Award presented by the Foundation of Wesley Woods, the 2014 Award for Distinguished Service presented by the Atlanta Business League, the 2009 Shining Light Award presented by Atlanta Gas Light and News/Talk 750 WSB, and the 2009 Beacon of Light Award presented by BoardWalk Consulting.