An Overview

About us

Hummingbird Firm is a community engagement consulting firm, specializing in face-to-face and digital engagement for public involvement, public participation, environmental communications, climate action, and cultural competency training.

We provide these services for A/E firms, public utilities, private developers, federal agencies, and municipalities.

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About the Founder

MaKara Rumley, Esq., is more than an experienced community engagement strategist; she is an important thought leader related to the environment, education, the green economy, and public health.  She has a knack for identifying what makes each stakeholder successful and leading the charge for how everyone can win.  It takes the private and public sector as well as community viewpoints to reach a project’s full benefit potential.

She has produced identifiable results during her work at the Environmental Protection Agency as the Senior Advisor on Community Engagement with the Regional Administrator, as an Environmental Attorney with GreenLaw, and as a consistent lecturer and presenter on cultural competency and community engagement. 

She is a graduate of George Washington University Law School and received her undergraduate degree from Spelman College. Mrs. Rumley has a track record of achievement and has a results oriented drive to meeting milestones.  She is committed to the use of qualitative as well as quantitative measurements to truly evaluate connectivity to target constituents.

MaKara Rumley - Hummingbird Firm - Mecca Gamble Photography 2020

MaKara Rumley, Esq.

Founder & CEO




Our Team Members


Christian V. Braneon, Ph.D.

Chief Technology officer




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DR. CHRISTIAN V. BRANEON is the Chief Technology Officer at Hummingbird where he provides technical expertise with a specialty in water and green infrastructure. He uses his broad background to assist with plain language translation of technical documents and for the development of strategic communications in the architecture, engineering, and construction



Denise Smith, Ph.D.

Transportation Planner




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DR. DENISE SMITH is a well-rounded

transportation professional who brings years of transportation experience to the team. She has developed an expertise in multimodal transportation planning and travel demand modeling. Dr. Smith is also very knowledgeable on a wide range of topics such as design, traffic operation and management, and autonomous vehicle technology. Her experience in academia, planning, and engineering, equip her with a unique perspective to contribute to projects.


Lauren Donnelly

Executive Assistant




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Lauren has an extensive background providing C-Level Support, along with community outreach. Utilizing her considerable experience and knowledge has been paramount to her anticipating need and planning ahead on small and large-scale projects alike. She strives to think outside of the box and develop solutions quickly. Her goal is to deliver consistent results and provide the best possible experience for her executives and key stakeholders, while also contributing to the community as much as possible.

The top focus for community engagement should be to put oneself in the community’s shoes. You have to understand what the communication style needs are and remain nimble – like a hummingbird.

MaKara Rumley, Esq., Founder & CEO

MaKara leaves me tired but in a good way!
She has an agenda and always has it all planned out. MaKara is really high on energy and that is key in this field.

Jewell A. HarperEnvironmental Justice Activist and Former Senior Advisor at USEPA
MaKara is a true professional! Her brilliance and experience shines through! Every project has been well planned and executed! Looking forward to the next opportunity to work together. Thank you!
Deborah ScottExecutive Director of Georgia STAND-UP
Makara is very gifted at keeping her finger on the pulse of every stakeholder in the room, making sure they’re engaged appropriately in conversations. She leaves no one behind. She is the real deal!
Reggie HammondManaging Partner of Your Crescendo
In addition to the strategic facilitation and capacity building support, MaKara and her team bring deep understanding of the community conditions that impact equity-centered work. This provides a unique layer of support.
Chandra FarleyJust Energy Director, Partnership for Southern Equity


Marisa Carter

Community Engagement Strategist


Marisa Carter is our Community Engagement Strategist at Hummingbird. She is a graduate of Spelman College and holds an MFA in Interior Design from Savannah College Art and Design. She brings years of experience in schematic development and strategic planning by way of a professional design background. Carter will use her background in helping with phase planning and visual presentation. Her aim is to assist in community engagement through developing presentations and creating informational material that will aid in the process of communication for all.

51 Free Community Engagement Tips