Alvin "Al" Austin, a Democrat, was elected in 2013 and is currently serving his first term on Charlotte City Council.
Austin is one local name many know from television and his community/civic work. A native Charlottean, his outstanding accomplishments with fundraising, event planning, marketing and community relations has placed him on the Greater Charlotte area’s radar of successful executive communicators.
Al is the Major Gifts Officer for the Division of Institutional Advancement at Johnson C. Smith University. He is responsible for identifying, cultivating and soliciting major gifts from individuals, corporations, alumni, and the community. The university is about to embark on a $150 million Comprehensive Campaign to transform the campus and the communities surrounding it.
Al served as the Executive Director of the McCrorey Family YMCA located in the Northwest Corridor of Charlotte from 2009 until 2012. Founded in 1936, McCrorey is the second oldest branch in the YMCA Greater Charlotte Association. He was responsible for a $2.1 million budget, 4,000 members, 75 staff, board development and executing the very successful Martin Luther King, Jr. Prayer Breakfast. Al also served as the Executive Director of the Hillcrest Family YMCA in Lyndhurst, Ohio just outside of Cleveland, Ohio for over three years. He was the first African American to head this branch of the YMCA of Greater Cleveland.
From 2004 until 2006, Al served as the “Y” Community Senior Financial Development Director of the Dowd and Stratford Richardson YMCA branches in Charlotte. There along with many volunteers and staff, he helped lead the annual campaign of raising $450,000 for the two branches and completed a capital campaign to build the Strafford Richardson YMCA.
Prior to working with the YMCA, Al served as Assistant Director of Public Relations with the Charlotte Housing Authority, National Public Relations Director for the American Association of Minority Businesses and Ground Transportation Supervisor for Charlotte Douglas International. He also served as the Vehicles for Hire Inspector with the Charlotte Mecklenburg Police Department.
Identified as one of Charlotte’s Emerging Minority
Leaders by Access Charlotte; honored with the PEARL Award from the Alpha Lamda Omega Chapter of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Incorporated as an outstanding community leader; listed in 2012 edition of Who’s Who in Black Charlotte. In September 2005, he received the Harry Brace Leadership Scholarship Award.
The award is presented annually to a YMCA of Greater Charlotte employee who exhibits the leadership characteristics exemplified by Harry Brace – who served as President/CEO of the YMCA of Greater Charlotte from 1983 until his passing in 1999.
The scholarship award allowed Al to attend the FAR Leadership Institute in High Point, North Carolina which is a nationally recognized leadership development institute. Al credits the institute for helping him be a better leader by better understanding himself.
Past honors and achievements include the YMCA Shining Star Award, the YMCA Quality Advocate Winner and the YMCA Branch Rose Award Winner, and the Governor’s Award for Outstanding Volunteer Services to North Carolina. Focus on Leadership Outstanding Alumni, and the Charlotte Housing Authority Employee of the Year. He is the former President of the Young Democrats of Mecklenburg County. Under his leadership the chapter received an award for outstanding achievement in voter registration and galvanizing younger democrats.
Al’s affiliations include Kappa Alpha Psi Fraternity, the Almetto Alexander Labyrinth Foundation Board of Managers, S.T.A.R.S. Board of Managers and Board of Trustees for the Penn Center in Beaufort South Carolina where Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. retreated for planning of the civil rights campaign. He is a member of the Park Ministries. He is a graduate of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, where he received bachelor of sciences degrees in sociology and criminal justice administration.
Al is extremely health-conscious and believes exercise, nutrition and prayer are keys to a long and successful life.