Sondra Hines Yates, City Startup Labs Board Member



Sondra Hines Yates is a multitalented educator, communications change agent, journalist, marketing professional, and fitness coach.


Sondra has spent the majority of her career guiding students in higher education by providing them with real-world, affordable, hands-on education to transform individuals as well as our community.  Her work has also focused on helping organizations improve their operational performance and incorporate diversity, equity & inclusion initiatives.


Hines Yates worked briefly in finance and switched to marketing, in a variety of communications related roles: Vice President, Marketing & Community Relations for a national nonprofit, responsible for overall agency communications, freelance writer, and Senior Account Executive/Copywriter for two local advertising agencies – the latter, a boutique agency specializing in multicultural marketing, coordinating community relations events in conjunction with clients desiring to reach diverse, and multicultural audiences.


Sondra pivoted to higher education as an Adjunct Professor. In this role, she planned and developed inspiring, interesting, and interactive contextualized lessons to prepare first-year and/or adult students with practical skills and knowledge. She transitioned from the classroom to a variety of roles including managing High-School Equivalency, Academic Advisor and Manager, Workforce Development. She juggled these roles with writing a weekly fitness column, focused on women’s health, particularly women of color.


Hines Yates work has been recognized with awards: Employee Health & Fitness Champion Wellness Award, Volunteer Award-TRiO, and Teaching Award of Excellence.


Yates hold a Master’s of Science-Journalism Innovation, Bachelor of Arts in Communications, Graduate Fellowship-Journalism, Teaching Credential- English as a Second Language, National Career Development Association; Certified Career Services Provider and Adjunct Instructor Certification. She has written for local, regional and national print publications.


Sondra is married, has one daughter and volunteers with Johnson C. Smith University. She is a member of Charlotte Alumnae Chapter, Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Incorporated, where she serves as the Chapter Journalist & Chair, Publicity/Marketing Committee, as well as serving on a regional committee.


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