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About

Creating a State of Investment.

Opportunity Alabama is an economic development organization focused on transforming Alabama’s communities through public and private investment in physical spaces and places. We help communities leverage diverse funding sources for projects and initiatives that improve quality of place and re-energize local economies. Founded in 2018, OPAL has been cited as a national leader in OZ-based economic development by Forbes Magazine and the New York Times and attracted over $5M in national philanthropy and federal funding since its inception. We work with developers, property owners, economic development professionals, local community leaders, and investors to support projects that move communities forward with new workforce housing, market rate housing, mixed-use development, historic revitalization, industrial development, and more. Our goal is to improve economic resilience and quality of place for all of Alabama’s communities.


Our Team

CGA Team

OPAL Fund Team

Comms Team

Founder & CEO 

[email protected]

Lindsay Edwards

Chief investment officer

[email protected]

Becky Carpenter

Chief Development Officer

[email protected]

Demetrius Faulk

Commercial Real Estate Associate

[email protected]

Megan Warren

Director of Operations & Accounting

[email protected]

Meri Margaret Fank

Manager of Communications & Engagement

[email protected]

Keya Kraft

Director of Storytelling

[email protected]

Chris Frye

Community Development Director

[email protected]

Investment associate

[email protected]

Justin Washington

US EDA Economic Recovery Corps Fellow

[email protected]

Board of Directors

Myla Calhoun

Vice President, Birmingham Division, Alabama Power Foundation

Greg Barker

President & CEO, Economic Development Partnership of Alabama

Anoop Mishra

Vice President & Regional Executive, Birmingham Branch, Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta

Wendi Boyen

Executive Vice President, Government & Institutional Banking, Regions Bank

James Outland

Founding Partner, New Capital Partners

Tony Smoke

Senior Vice President, Marketing & Economic Development, Alabama Power

Corporate Structure

Operating as a non-profit parent company, OPAL runs technical assistance programming and a benefit corporation subsidiary (OPAL Investments, BC), which raises and invests capital into our statewide network of real estate deals.

The ALTogether Coalition was developed to bring statewide entities together to collaboratively address the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic on local economies and generate actionable strategies for their recovery. The work of this coalition is made possible through a generous Economic Adjustment Assistance grant from the U.S. Economic Development Administration.

The Community Growth Accelerator (CGA) is OPAL’s flagship program through this initiative. The following partners are critical to the success of CGA and are providing additional services and programs to communities as part of their work through the Altogether Initiative.

Main Street Alabama – Main Street Alabama is a 501©(3) organization focused on bringing jobs, dollars, and people back to Alabama’s historic communities. Economic development is at the heart of this statewide organization’s efforts to revitalize downtowns and neighborhood commercial districts. Main Street Alabama is the state coordinating program of Main Street America and utilizes the proven Main Street Four-Point Approach to help communities organize themselves for success, create vibrant public spaces through design, promote their districts, and enhance their economic base.

MSA provides the following services for Designated Main Street Communities through the ALtogether initiative:

The Economic Development Partnership of Alabama – EDPA is a private non-profit organization funded by more than 60 Alabama companies, whose mission is to attract and retain world-class talent across a broad spectrum of interests and industries, support and inspire both existing industry and innovative/emerging companies (whether home-grown or transplanted), expand existing businesses, and be the trusted source for data on key economic drivers and insights for Alabama economic development stakeholders. EDPA is providing the following services through the ALtogether initiative:

Business Council of Alabama – BCA is Alabama’s chamber of commerce whose purpose is to improve the business climate across the state. BCA has been a coalition partner from the start; during COVID, they provided a series of technical assistance services to businesses experiencing negative impacts from the pandemic, and have supported and promoted the work of the ALtogether coalition and driven our strategic decisions about programming that impacts their membership ever since.