OUR TEAM

Forrest Johnson Recruiting is a woman-owned business, founded in 2009. We have a team of extremely talented individuals, who each bring their own unique contributions to helping our clients find the talent they need to grow their businesses.

 
Erin Johnson - Founding Principal Erin began her career in executive search 15 years ago while on a job search of her own, when the firm that was working with her as a candidate hired her for themselves. Her prior experience in advertising and marketing enables her to help firms attract the right talent. Her experience in doing business development for an Internet startup taught her a lot about building a business and the value of having the right team in place. Erin quickly rose through the ranks at that traditional executive search firm and became an associate partner within a few years. She developed a reputation for effectively serving a broad range of clients and candidates across diverse industries. Over the years Erin has developed a particular expertise in general corporate search, with a successful track record in helping clients build and grow sales, marketing, operations, and human resources teams all over the country. Erin is originally from Atlanta and graduated from Furman University with two degrees, a BA in Music and a BA in Communications. She and her husband have 4 children and are active members of Church of the Apostles.

Erin Johnson - Founding Principal

Erin began her career in executive search 15 years ago while on a job search of her own, when the firm that was working with her as a candidate hired her for themselves. Her prior experience in advertising and marketing enables her to help firms attract the right talent. Her experience in doing business development for an Internet startup taught her a lot about building a business and the value of having the right team in place.

Erin quickly rose through the ranks at that traditional executive search firm and became an associate partner within a few years. She developed a reputation for effectively serving a broad range of clients and candidates across diverse industries. Over the years Erin has developed a particular expertise in general corporate search, with a successful track record in helping clients build and grow sales, marketing, operations, and human resources teams all over the country.

Erin is originally from Atlanta and graduated from Furman University with two degrees, a BA in Music and a BA in Communications. She and her husband have 4 children and are active members of Church of the Apostles.

Drew Johnson - Managing Principal Drew is a “ramblin’ wreck from Georgia Tech” and could have been a “helluva” engineer. He brings a naturally inquisitive and analytical mind to the recruiting process. He draws upon broad professional experience that includes 2 years of postgraduate study in China and 4 years on staff with Cru. Drew has also worked in operations for 2 multi-national corporations, spanning the transportation and commercial real estate industries.  Given his entrepreneurial bent, joining forces with his wife Erin to launch Forrest Johnson was inevitable. Drew is responsible for the strategic leadership and operational management of the firm, which includes new business development, as well as candidate sourcing and recruiting. Originally from the Gulf Coast of Florida, Drew has called Atlanta home since 1993. He has earned a BS in Electrical Engineering with honors from Georgia Tech and an MBA from Emory University's Goizueta Business School. He is an active member of Church of the Apostles and teaches the 6th grade boys Sunday school class.

Drew Johnson - Managing Principal

Drew is a “ramblin’ wreck from Georgia Tech” and could have been a “helluva” engineer. He brings a naturally inquisitive and analytical mind to the recruiting process.

He draws upon broad professional experience that includes 2 years of postgraduate study in China and 4 years on staff with Cru. Drew has also worked in operations for 2 multi-national corporations, spanning the transportation and commercial real estate industries. 

Given his entrepreneurial bent, joining forces with his wife Erin to launch Forrest Johnson was inevitable. Drew is responsible for the strategic leadership and operational management of the firm, which includes new business development, as well as candidate sourcing and recruiting.

Originally from the Gulf Coast of Florida, Drew has called Atlanta home since 1993. He has earned a BS in Electrical Engineering with honors from Georgia Tech and an MBA from Emory University's Goizueta Business School. He is an active member of Church of the Apostles and teaches the 6th grade boys Sunday school class.

 
 
Jay Watkins - Senior Recruiter Jay grew up in a small Mississippi town on a 200 acre farm. After graduating from the University of Southern Mississippi in 2003 with a degree in Hospitality Management, Jay did the only natural thing for a small-town Mississippi boy … he moved to Italy for two years!  While at the University of Pisa, Jay worked with a global, faith-based organization mentoring college students. He returned to the United States with a fresh appreciation for air conditioning and a craving for the world's best espresso. He continued his work with college students for another four years, becoming an expert on the Millennial generation. Jay focused the next four years of his career on sales and marketing within the HR software and hospitality industries. Those two interests merged when he was recruited to direct a young professionals initiative in Atlanta and Birmingham, mentoring Millennials in business. That’s when Forrest Johnson serendipitously found Jay and recruited him to join the team. "Though I had never considered the recruiting industry, I was drawn to the mission of Forrest Johnson." Jay has a passion to serve people well and to work with excellence. Jay rejects the status quo, while zealously embracing a fresh approach to recruiting.

Jay Watkins - Senior Recruiter

Jay grew up in a small Mississippi town on a 200 acre farm. After graduating from the University of Southern Mississippi in 2003 with a degree in Hospitality Management, Jay did the only natural thing for a small-town Mississippi boy … he moved to Italy for two years! 

While at the University of Pisa, Jay worked with a global, faith-based organization mentoring college students. He returned to the United States with a fresh appreciation for air conditioning and a craving for the world's best espresso.

He continued his work with college students for another four years, becoming an expert on the Millennial generation. Jay focused the next four years of his career on sales and marketing within the HR software and hospitality industries. Those two interests merged when he was recruited to direct a young professionals initiative in Atlanta and Birmingham, mentoring Millennials in business.

That’s when Forrest Johnson serendipitously found Jay and recruited him to join the team. "Though I had never considered the recruiting industry, I was drawn to the mission of Forrest Johnson." Jay has a passion to serve people well and to work with excellence. Jay rejects the status quo, while zealously embracing a fresh approach to recruiting.

Shatanese Reese - Senior Recruiter / HR Consultant Shatanese Reese is a certified Senior Professional in Human Resources (SPHR) with over twenty years of experience.  Her career spans multiple industries such as retail, banking, and higher education.  Shatanese has held multiple leadership roles within the HR function throughout her career including Assistant Director of Staff Recruitment and Retention, Executive Search Consultant, Diversity Consultant and most recently HR Manager.  Each every one of these roles has involved talent acquisition, one of her passions! Shatanese loves making connections between her candidates and her clients. She is often applauded for closely managing the entire recruitment experience with both the candidate and client in mind.   Shatanese is originally from Iowa, and obtained her Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees from Iowa State University.  She is also the owner of Super Extra Ordinary Mom, LLC, an HR Consultancy which specializes in leadership development and diversity and inclusion workshops.  She and her husband have six children and reside in Atlanta, where they are active members of Word of Faith Family Worship Cathedral.

Shatanese Reese - Senior Recruiter / HR Consultant

Shatanese Reese is a certified Senior Professional in Human Resources (SPHR) with over twenty years of experience.  Her career spans multiple industries such as retail, banking, and higher education.  Shatanese has held multiple leadership roles within the HR function throughout her career including Assistant Director of Staff Recruitment and Retention, Executive Search Consultant, Diversity Consultant and most recently HR Manager.  Each every one of these roles has involved talent acquisition, one of her passions! Shatanese loves making connections between her candidates and her clients. She is often applauded for closely managing the entire recruitment experience with both the candidate and client in mind.  

Shatanese is originally from Iowa, and obtained her Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees from Iowa State University.  She is also the owner of Super Extra Ordinary Mom, LLC, an HR Consultancy which specializes in leadership development and diversity and inclusion workshops.  She and her husband have six children and reside in Atlanta, where they are active members of Word of Faith Family Worship Cathedral.

Sandra Walton - Operations Manager Sandy knows how to get things done! Long before the push to recruit female technology talent, she was a business analyst in the retail industry, helping several employers migrate to computer systems and technology-driven processes. Most recently, before joining the Forrest Johnson team, Sandy served for 8 years as the Executive Director of Rebuilding Together in Lynchburg, VA. She has touched countless peoples lives and added tremendous value to for-profit companies and nonprofit organizations by helping people succeed together. As the Operations Manager, Sandy’s role is to ensure that Forrest Johnson delivers recruiting services with excellence and a customer experience such that clients and candidates alike would enthusiastically refer us to the people they know. Sandy earned Bachelor’s degrees from both Samford University and the University of Alabama at Birmingham in Retailing and Computer Science respectively. She is married and enjoys time with her two sons and their families. In her spare time Sandy works on family history and genealogy.

Sandra Walton - Operations Manager

Sandy knows how to get things done! Long before the push to recruit female technology talent, she was a business analyst in the retail industry, helping several employers migrate to computer systems and technology-driven processes. Most recently, before joining the Forrest Johnson team, Sandy served for 8 years as the Executive Director of Rebuilding Together in Lynchburg, VA. She has touched countless peoples lives and added tremendous value to for-profit companies and nonprofit organizations by helping people succeed together.

As the Operations Manager, Sandy’s role is to ensure that Forrest Johnson delivers recruiting services with excellence and a customer experience such that clients and candidates alike would enthusiastically refer us to the people they know.

Sandy earned Bachelor’s degrees from both Samford University and the University of Alabama at Birmingham in Retailing and Computer Science respectively. She is married and enjoys time with her two sons and their families. In her spare time Sandy works on family history and genealogy.