Director of Community Engagement


Donna Armstrong Lackey has spent 36 years in the field of economic, workforce and community development.  She is currently the Director of the University of West Georgia Office of Community Engagement. In this role, she leads programs in regional P-20 educational collaboration, economic and talent development, dual career programming, community partnerships, non-profit leadership support, creative innovation and in the UWG five-county region.

Donna has a passion for expanding educational and career opportunities for UWG students and graduates, as well as all residents of the west Georgia area. She works closely with area economic and workforce development professionals and companies in sharing UWG options when recruiting top local talent. 

Prior to joining the UWG Wolves Den, Donna served as Senior Vice President for Carroll Tomorrow and the Carroll County Chamber for 12 years where she directed programming in support of business development, youth leadership training, workforce education, and entrepreneurship in Carroll County. She is best known for her work with The Burson Center, a regional business incubator, recognized in 2009, and again in 2013, as a ‘Top 10 Best Practices Rural Incubation Program’ by the US Department of Commerce and the International Business Innovation Association. Previous work history includes local and regional strategic planning and funding procurement exceeding $200 million across Georgia and East Alabama. 

She holds a Master of Public Administration from the University of West Georgia; a Bachelor’s degree in Communications/Public Relations from Shorter University; and, a professional certificate in Economic Development from the University of Oklahoma EDI. Donna also has certifications in organizational management, leadership and development finance. She is a 2001 graduate of Leadership Georgia and served as the 2013 chair of the UWG A Day Campaign.  Donna is a 35-year member of the Georgia Economic Developers Association, and serves on the USG Regents’ Advisory Committee on Community Engagement and Service, the USG Economic Development Committee, and the WorkSource Three Rivers WIOA Executive Board.

Donna is very active in the local community as board chair of Partners Advancing Student Success, chair the Carroll County Civil Service Board and as board secretary of the West Georgia Youth Science & Technology Center, and a member of the Carroll Rural Public Transit Advisory Council. She is an active Rotarian having served as the 2013-14 President of the Rotary Club of Carrollton and is a Paul Harris and Will Watt Fellow. Donna has had the opportunity to travel extensively including South America, the UK and China.

She and her husband, Norman a real estate developer, reside in south Carroll County.

Education / Degrees

  • B.A., Communications & Public Relations, Shorter University, 1981
  • M.P.A., Master of Public Administration, University of West Georgia, 1985