Our Past, Present, and Future
Dünümüz, bugünümüz ve yarınlar

We are Turkish-American immigrants who came together to welcome and assist new arrivals and to give back to the Charlotte community that has been so generous to us over the years. We will forever be grateful.

Bölgemize yeni gelen kardeşlerimize destek olmak amacıyla bir araya gelmiş Türk asıllı göçmenlerden oluşan bir grubuz. Bir diğer amacımız da uzun yıllardır bizleri arasına kabul etmiş Amerikan toplumuna katkıda bulunmak.

Our history and mission — Geçmişimiz ve amacımız
Our governance — Yönetim prensiplerimiz
Our board of directors — Yönetim kurulumuz
Our committees — Komitelerimiz

Our history and mission

We founded Association of Turkish-Americans in Charlotte (ATA-Charlotte) as a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization in 2022. However, our roots go all the way back to 2009 when an indomitable group of friends and volunteers came together with a burning desire to serve and strengthen our community. For the next 12 years, we operated as a regional chapter of American Turkish Association of North Carolina (ATA-NC) headquartered in Raleigh. In 2021, our chapter Board concluded that our organization is mature enough to stand on its own feet, which started our journey towards independence from ATA-NC. We will remain forever grateful for all the support ATA-NC provided us over the years.

Since our inception, we have organized countless cultural, educational, and social events to bring more visibility to the Turkish-American community in Charlotte, from booths at the international festivals to Bayram celebrations and fundraising dinners to benefit underprivileged individuals and families in our region. Our organization is proud to provide support and collaborate with other local organizations such as Safe Alliance, Hope House Foundation of Huntersville, NC, and Bridge to Turkiye Fund.

While our legal status has changed, our mission has not. We will continue to serve our community by promoting Turkish culture, history and customs, by hosting fun events and cultural activities, and by supporting other community organizations in our region that change and save lives every day.

With your support, we hope to unite the ever-growing population of Charlotte residents of Turkish descent, and give back to our Charlotte community that has been so welcoming and generous to generations of Turkish immigrants.

If you are interested in becoming a member of ATA Charlotte, please visit our Membership page.

Our governance

ATA-Charlotte is managed by its volunteer Executive Committee and Board of Directors consisting of individuals who have enthusiastically committed their time and money to the advancement of our mission. Board elections are held online in early November during the annual General Assembly meeting. If you are a regular member who is interested in running for a Board seat or know of someone who can contribute to our mission, please contact our Nominations and Elections Committee at nec@charlotteturks.org.

Our operations are governed by our Bylaws and guided by the policies and procedures adopted by our Board. We strive to be a transparent and accountable organization deserving of the trust placed in us by our membership. Every Board member signs our Board Member Agreement, Confidentiality Agreement, and completes our Conflict-of-Interest Disclosure. Committee members who have access to member records are also required to sign our Confidentiality Agreement.

Our commitment to transparency is guaranteed in our Bylaws. We are required to have our books and operations audited annually by an independent committee of regular members. Our financial and governance records are always open to all regular members for their review. (Note that our confidentiality policy forbids us from sharing the identities of our individual donors; please contact executive@charlotteturks.org for more information).

Members who observe any action that violates the law, Bylaws or ATA-Charlotte policies and procedures are strongly encouraged to report the violation anonymously to the Audit Committee at audit@charlotteturks.org and to the ATA-Charlotte President at president@charlotteturks.org. ATA-Charlotte will not retaliate against any member, director, officer, or volunteer who in good faith, has made a protest or raised a complaint against some practice of ATA-Charlotte or of another individual or entity with whom ATA-Charlotte has a business relationship.

ATA-Charlotte Bylaws ➝
ATA-Charlotte Policies and Procesures of Manual ➝
ATA-Charlotte Board Members Agreement ➝

ATA-Charlotte Conflict of Interest Disclosure

Regular members may contact executive@charlotteturks.org if they wish to review the disclosures of individual board members

Our board of directors

ATA-Charlotte is currently managed by the following Directors and Officers:

  • President — Ertunga Ozelkan
  • Vice President — Cinar Gulkanat
  • Treasurer — Batu Ozboz
  • Secretary — Pinar Tanrikorur
  • Assistant Treasurer — TBD
  • Assistant Secretary — TBD
  • Renan Akcora
  • Muge Aygen
  • Hakan Bilsen
  • Orcun Karakaya
  • Haluk Telimen
  • Akiner Tuzuner

Our committees

ATA-Charlotte Board of Directors has created seven committees to carry out its mission. A brief description of each committee and its contact information are listed below.

Internal Events Committee
The Internal Events Committee is responsible for planning and coordinating all social, cultural, and educational activities within the budgetary guidelines established by the Board of Directors to engage the membership, such as picnics, hiking, camping, visits to zoos, mountain or beach activities, etc. To get more information on the activities of this committee, please visit the Events link on our website or contact us at internal@charlotteturks.org.
Charlotte Community Outreach Committee
The Charlotte Community Outreach Committee creates and identifies organized and enjoyable community service activities for our members. To get more information on the activities of this committee, please visit the Events link on our website or contact us at outreach@charlotteturks.org.
Membership Committee
The Membership Committee serves the Organization by maintaining accurate and timely records of membership and by developing and implementing effective membership recruitment and retention activities. If you are interested in this committee’s work, please contact us at membership@charlotteturks.org.
Communications Committee
The Communications Committee develops and maintains all means of communication including social media resources and collaborating with the Board to provide an effective, consistent message in print, online and social media resources. If you are interested in this committee’s work, please contact us at communications@charlotteturks.org.
Volunteer Committee
The Volunteer Committee secures volunteers for the internal and external events of the Organization. If you are interested in this committee’s work or would like to volunteer with us, please contact us at volunteer@charlotteturks.org.
Turkish Heritage Committee
The Turkish Heritage Committee is responsible for collecting information on the history of Turkish immigration to Charlotte and neighboring areas. If you are interested in this committee’s work or would like to volunteer with us, please contact us at heritage@charlotteturks.org.
Finance Committee
The Finance Committee serves the Organization by maintaining accurate financial records, overseeing its financial strategy and performance, and raising funds to meet its budget goals. If you are interested in this committee’s work, please contact us at finance@charlotteturks.org.
Nominations & Elections Committee
The Nominations & Elections Committee cultivates and secures candidates for the Board elections and conducts the annual election, in accordance with provisions of the Bylaws. If you are a regular member interested in an elected position in our organization, please contact the committee at nec@charlotteturks.org.