We had the good fortune of connecting with Lisa Guadalupe Clarke and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Lisa Guadalupe, what was your thought process behind starting your own business?
I have a passion for helping others. After successfully creating start-up offices for other businesses, I decided to found my own company, ATL Search Group, in May of 2017. My company grossed over a million dollars in a little over a year. I started my company with only $325.00 and a big dream. I was lucky enough to start my company in Buckhead inside the Georgia Hispanic Chamber of Commerce. My focus has been to volunteer in the Hispanic community and to work with women & youth. I have helped as many people as I could to, 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 been honored to be recognized for all the work I am doing, by receiving several awards in the Diversity and Inclusion space. I volunteered as ALPFA Atlanta 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 Woman 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 of Leadership Georgia, Class of 2019 and a member of Leadership Atlanta, Class of 2022. I am 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.
Can you give our readers an introduction to your business? Maybe you can share a bit about what you do and what sets you apart from others?
ATL Search Group is a 100% woman-owned, minority certified Staffing company with over 35 years of combined 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. I am most proud that my company has survived during Covid and the work we are doing with my team to help others not only to find a job, but to help them with their resume and interview techniques. Things are not always easy when you have your own company. You worry all the time, not only about keeping your doors open, but making sure your staff, employees and clients are happy with the work you are doing.
I have been able to overcome many challenges in life by always praying to God. He have always provided for me. I learned long time ago to always pray.
One of the lessons I have learned is that you need to surround yourself with people that believe in your vision and bring skills that you may not have. Also always believe in yourself and listen to your gut. If you feel that it’s not right, it’s because it is not. I want the world to know that if you’re in place that you don’t want to be in, you can always change it. I did. I am a civil war survivor from El Salvador. I put myself through High School and College. I have been living on my own since I was 15 years old. Know that you have the power of changing your current situation for the best. I have always been a fighter for what I want in life and I have never let anyone one stop me from making my dreams a reality. I have a saying that I have been practicing since I was very young. “I did not come this far, to stay this far.” I hope to encourage other women to dream big and to have the courage of having the life and career they always wanted. It won’t be easy, but it will be worth it.
If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
Buford Hwy is the first place I would take them to taste some of the most diverse restaurants that we are so lucky to have here. From Salvadorian, Mexican, Korean, Chinese, Vietnamese and Japanese food to name a few. Then I would take them to Gibbs Garden to see the beautiful Japanese Gardens. I would also take them to Amicalola Falls State Park and Helen GA for some wine tasting. If they like the city life, I would take them to Martin Luther King Museum, the Botanical Garden for a beautiful tour and some great food. I would also take them to Ponce City Market for Miniature golf and Atlantic Station for some shopping and good food and desserts.
Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
During my life I have had several mentors. My husband Martin Clarke, who has always been my biggest supporter and my rock. My three beautiful daughters, who give me a reason to get up every day. My Mother, Maria De La Paz Gomez (Pacita) for showing me how to be kind and helpful to others. Now she is watching me from heaven with my Abuelita (Grandma) Concha and my Nana Mamanita. They always encourage me to always have dreams and never give up. My High School Business Teacher, Mr. Steve Lombardi for encouraging me to attend college and the Hispanic Community that supports me.
Instagram: lisa.clarke.7315 &atlsearchgroup
Facebook: ATL Search Group