Juanita P. Baranco is the Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer of The Baran Company LLC, consisting of Mercedes Benz of Buckhead and Mercedes Benz of Covington, Louisiana. Baranco earned both a Bachelor of Science and Juris Doctorate Degrees from Louisiana State University. She was awarded an honorary Doctorate degree from Clark Atlanta University. Prior to the founding of her businesses, Baranco enjoyed a successful career in law – including a turn as Assistant Attorney General for the State of Georgia. She is a member of the American Bar Association and the State Bar Associations of Georgia and Louisiana. Her business appointments have included director positions with the Federal Reserve of Atlanta, the John H. Harland Company, the Atlanta and DeKalb chambers of commerce and First Union Bank. She also served as a member of the Board of Regents for the University System of Georgia and as Chairman of the Education Committee for the 1996 Olympics.
Throughout her career, Baranco has been honored locally and nationally for her contributions to the automobile industry. She has been recognized with the Acura Precision Team Award, Acura Council of Excellence Award, and was a finalist for the 2003 Time Magazine Quality Dealer Award. She was the first recipient of the Trumpet Award for Entrepreneurial Excellence from Turner Broadcasting System, Inc. On several occasions, Baranco has been featured in Georgia Trend magazine’s annual list of the “100 Most Influential Georgians.” She was also featured in Automotive News “100 Leading Women in the North American Auto Industry”. She has been awarded Entrepreneur of the Year by the Atlanta Business League; recipient of the DECCA Award from the Atlanta Business Chronicle; recipient of the YWCA’s Women of Achievement Award; recipient of the Atlanta History Center’s Defining Women in Atlanta Life Award and awarded the 12th Annual Blanchard Award for Outstanding Stewardship and Ethics in Business by Columbus State University. She has also been featured in Essence magazine as one of Atlanta’s women on the move. In 2012, she was inducted into the Georgia State University Business Hall of Fame. Most recently she was named a 2021 Trustee of the Georgia Historical Society, a position appointed by Governor Brian Kemp.
She currently serves on the Board of Directors of Southern Company, Woodruff Arts Center and the Commerce Club and serves as Chair-Elect of the Buckhead Coalition.
Baranco, born in Washington, D.C. and raised in Shreveport, Louisiana, is married to Gregory Baranco and is the mother of four children.