Sam Massell, a life-long residnet of Atlanta, has had successful careers in real estate brokerage, elected office, the field of tourism, and association management.
He spent twenty years as a Realtor, becoming Vice President of Allan-Grayson Realty Company, then one of the city's largest commercial brokerage firms. During that time, he was elected a charter member of the Atlanta Real Estate Board's Million Dollar Club and was honored three times with the Cates Trophy by the Georgia Association of Real Estate Boards for creating the "Outstanding Transaction of the Year."
While in real estate, Massell became extremely active in a wide range of civic work, wich eventually led to the political arena. He served twenty-two years in elected offices, including eight as President of Atlanta's Board of Aldermen (now known as the City Council) and four as the city's Mayor. While holding that office, he was also chosen as President of the 15,000-member National League of Cities. In addition, he has served a four-year term on the Board of the Metropolitan Atlanta Rapid Transit Authority, and was a Board Member of the Atlanta Committee for the Olympic Games.
Among other achievements, his administration as Mayor is credited with establishing MARTA (Atlanta's mass transit program), with developing the city's first enclosed arena (the Omni Coliseum), and with providing the "Five Points" Central City Woodruff Park, all with no call on ad valorem taxes. He also pioneered minority opportunities in city government, appointing the first female to Atlanta's City Council and the first Blacks as City Department heads.