Larry Gellerstedt Honored at Council for Quality Growth’s 30th Anniversary Four Pillar Tribute

Larry Gellerstedt III, Executive Chairman of Cousins Properties Honored at Council for Quality Growth’s 30th Anniversary Four Pillar Tribute

The Council for Quality Growth honored Cousins Properties Executive Chairman Larry Gellerstedt III with its 30th Anniversary Four Pillar Tribute – themed “Strength Through Diversity” at the Georgia World Congress Center.

The Council’s 2019 Chairman and Executive Director at Perimeter Community Improvement Districts (PCIDs) presented Larry Gellerstedt with the award and, in accepting the award, Gellerstedt noted, “If our country and region defined ourselves by our differences, we wouldn’t be the Atlanta we are now. Democracy depends on compromise and respect, usually, it’s the last resort after we’ve tried everything else before we get the right thing. If we do not respect or compromise and learn from each other, this will not work. Where better to show it than Atlanta, we can’t assume that it’s here, diversity requires you to get out of your comfort zone mentally. Diversity is a huge competitive advantage.”

“Larry epitomizes the Four Pillars of excellence that the Council has recognized in Atlanta’s leaders for the past 30 years,” said Council for Quality Growth President & CEO Michael Paris. “Larry’s dedication to business excellence and diversity, coupled with his contributions towards civic good, illustrate the positive influence and impact our leaders can make on the community and world around them.”

Hosted by Hala Moddelmog, President & CEO of the Metro Atlanta Chamber, an esteemed group of Tribute Speakers assembled to pay tribute to Gellerstedt for his “Four Pillars,” including:

  • Russ Hardin, President, Robert W. Woodruff Foundation, Inc.
  • Doug Hertz, Chairman & CEO, United Distributors, Inc.
  • Donna Hyland, President & CEO, Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta
  • Egbert Perry, Chairman & CEO, Integral Group

Speakers at the event recognized Gellerstedt for his success in meeting each of the Four Pillars, noting several contributions Georgia’s economic development and fiscal health, including:

  • Larry’ is truly the only person in my career that I’ve ever called a true mentor. He is always taking action to solve problems and find a solution.
  • Atlanta is a better place because Larry has always called it home.
  • Larry has never shied away from paying Civic rent and embraces the opportunity for responsibility.
  • Larry is a born leader and a visionary, always steadfast, calm and deliberate.
  • Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta would not be the system of today if it wasn’t for Larry’s leadership, and vision.
  • Larry is a servant leader and his name comes to people’s mind when they’re thinking about difficult but important things.

The Council is proud to honor Larry Gellerstedt III with its Four Pillar Tribute. Event information is available at

“It’s such an honor to recognize Larry for his continued emphasis on diversity in the workplace,” said Council for Quality Growth Chairman of the Board, Perimeter Community Improvement Districts (PCIDs) Executive Director Ann Hanlon. “As a leader of a world-class organizations such as Cousins Properties, he sets the tone and example for others leaders to follow.”

About the Four Pillar Tribute:

For 30 years the Council for Quality Growth has paid tribute to an outstanding individual who exemplifies the Council’s mission of promoting balanced and responsible growth through an annual leadership tribute event that recognizes the ‘Four Pillars’ of leadership – Quality, Responsibility, Vision and Integrity.

The Four Pillar Award and Tribute is an unparalleled honor that allows the opportunity for the Metro Atlanta region and State of Georgia to celebrate the recipient’s significant contributions to quality of life, community leadership and economic development. The event and award have come to be known as the highest honor bestowed for the aforementioned contributions. The event provides a platform to align the honorees’ impacts on the region and the state with the Council’s ambitions and serves as a beacon of inspiration to perpetuate our economic prosperity.

Past recipients of the Council’s Four Pillar award include: 

  • 1990-Steve Reynolds
  • 1991-Wayne Shackelford
  • 1992-W. Benefield
  • 1993-Scott Hudgens
  • 1994-Wayne H. Mason
  • 1995-Virgil R. Williams
  • 1996-Paul A. Duke
  • 1997-Jim Cowart
  • 1998-D. Caswell
  • 1999-Ray Weeks
  • 2000-Richard L. Tucker
  • 2001-Louise Radloff
  • 2002-George Busbee
  • 2003-Wayne Hill
  • 2004-Charlie Brown
  • 2005-Senator Johnny Isakson
  • 2006-John Wieland
  • 2007-John A. Williams
  • 2008-Tom Cousins
  • 2009-Mayor Shirley Franklin
  • 2010-Arthur M. Blank
  • 2011-Charles Loudermilk, Sr.
  • 2012-Sam Massell
  • 2013-John Portman
  • 2014-Steve Selig
  • 2015-Dan Cathy
  • 2016-Jenny Pruitt
  • 2017-Nathan Deal
  • 2018-Paul Bowers