Atlanta Job Fair: Big Surprise for 5 Women

Tory Johnson found jobs for five women and more a chance to talk to employers.

Nov. 13, 2008 — -- With more than 10 million Americans out of work, we created "Good Morning America's" Great American Job Fair to bring a range of employers face to face with anyone in need of work.

Our first stop: Atlanta. The lessons learned here from the people we worked closely with are applicable — and available — to everyone nationwide. Click here for a list of all the resources — and more — featured in the job segments today.


Cheryl lost the administrative job she loved at a landscape nursery. She assumed she'd find a new position in no time, but quickly discovered the economy had taken a toll on her town.

After she sent out hundreds of resumes with no response, it became clear that very few local opportunities existed.

Armed with a powerful positive attitude, she told us she was willing to do whatever it took to make a living. We introduced her to Working Solutions and oDesk where she's now working online from home.

The flexible schedule allows her to devote more time to her real passion: art. In just three weeks, she's sold two paintings on Etsy for more than $300.


After 12 years in the hard-hit automotive industry, Becky watcher her career come to a halt after she was laid off from an auto giant. I suggested that she set up a profile on Elance, which like oDesk, has thousands of opportunities from data entry to software development, and in a matter of days four projects had popped up. She'll start off with $1,500 worth of work and she'll be well on her way to building a portfolio that will attract other clients too.


After losing the son she was totally devoted to, Susan said she needed to find another passion. In an e-mail she said she dreamed of working for the Butterball Turkey Talkline during the holidays. That wish was answered.

Butterball agreed to fly her to its Illinois headquarters to train with the Turkey Talkline experts to handle e-mails and calls. Plus, the Butterball executives will hear her ideas for other food projects, which is the door she wanted to open. Susan is an example of someone who spoke up and reached out, which is what everyone should do. You never know who'll be receptive to helping you open doors.


As a single mom, Tracee said she wanted to expand her ability to get hired by training in medical transcription, with the goal of working from home to spare herself the awful Atlanta commute. Yet the cost of that education is prohibitive for her.

We arranged for a full scholarship from CareerStep with $3,500, plus immediate assistance with medical coding job placement to make use of the skills and education Tracee already has.


And finally, Amber wanted to turn her account services and temp background into an at-home customer service job. VIPDesk is ready to offer her a position as a brand ambassador for Eddie Bauer. Other women we worked with behind the scenes recently landed positions at other companies, such as Alpine Access and West, doing similar work.

Need Help With Your Search? Start a "GMA" Job Club in your community. None of us can find work alone. We all need help from others. And the good news is that everyone has the power and ability to help. Click here to learn about this new initiative and get going now. I'll be monitoring the progress of groups around the country and offering them my help in the days and weeks ahead.

Tory Johnson is the workplace contributor on "Good Morning America" and the CEO of Women for Hire. Visit her Web site at