Issue 14.90 | Feb. 17, 2015
DULUTH, Ga., Feb. 17, 2015 -- The Partnership Against Domestic Violence (PADV) is planning a "Women in Action" breakfast gathering in Gwinnett to highlight the program concerning violence in the home place. The breakfast will be held at 8:30 a.m. on February 20 at Sugarloaf Country Club in Duluth. Tickets are $75.
The Board of Directors and Gwinnett Fund Development Committee of PADV invites Gwinnettians to "Join us for an informative breakfast on the issue of domestic violence and how you can help stop it."
This breakfast will engage Gwinnett County women on the topic of domestic violence through thought-provoking dialogue, prize giveaways and a women's marketplace. PADV welcomes The Piedmont Bank as the Presenting Sponsor.
The keynote speaker of the morning will be Jennie Helderman, author of As the Sycamore Grows. This book details the account of a domestic violence survivor turned advocate, Ginger Stone, who will give a first-hand account of her experiences with this issue as well. The book is riveting, detailed, and unfortunately, it's true. Author Jennie Helderman is a 2007 Pushcart Prize nominee whose book won six literary awards and endorsements from 500 book clubs.
Daphne Walker, president and CEO of the Partnership Against Domestic Violence, thanked the event planning committee: Jennifer Bridwell, Theresa Bullock, Sharon Cook, Jennifer Cramer, Rich Hendry, Carey Herron, Beth Mann, Anita Solty, Sandra Strickland, Buddy Toliver, and Lisa Winton for organizing the event to benefit PADV. She stated the proceeds from the event will benefit the Gwinnett shelter, which is the largest in the state of Georgia.
Proceeds allow PADV to provide emergency shelter and support services to clients completely free of charge. Without the support of sponsors this would not be possible
PADV provides a myriad of free programs and services in order to pursue their mission of ending the crime of intimate partner violence while empowering its survivors. This includes a 24-hour crisis hotline; two emergency shelters (one in Fulton County and the other in Gwinnett County); legal advocacy services for victims trying to navigate their way through the complex judicial system; community outreach programs around metropolitan Atlanta; a Teen Dating Violence Prevention Program purposed to educate teens on the dynamics of healthy relationships; and a Supportive Housing Program for women trying to re-establish their independence versus return to their abuser and the resources he provides.
FEB. 17, 2015 -- Two items concerning Georgia's schools were floated last week. One we oppose, while the other intrigues us.
The proposition that we oppose, proposed by Republican Sen. John Wilkinson of Toccoa, would allow Georgia school districts to elect school superintendents, and have local school board members appointed by a grand jury.
Basically, that's a bad bill. We know. We've seen systems where superintendents were elected. It does nothing less than politicize schools, makes them less effective and does not improve education. It would take Georgia a step back, not forward, in educating the youth of our state.
In Georgia school districts, all superintendents are presently picked by the elected or appointed school board. Senator Wilkinson says: "There's lots of diversity of our counties in Georgia. This is just giving another way to let the people decide how they want their schools governed." Diversity: yes; improving education: no.
Whether the school system would improve by selecting board members by the Grand Jury is another question. That may be. But electing a school superintendent is bad news, no matter how you look at it. We hope the Legislature turns thumbs down on this proposition.
The other trial balloon brings more discussion. It comes from Governor Nathan Deal, who wants to have the State of Georgia take over "failing schools." He includes a list of 140 failing schools in Georgia, out of 2,289 schools, as of 2011-12. (In addition, there are 212 charter schools.)
A "failing" school is one that has spent at least three years at the bottom of the Georgia Department of Education's College and Career Ready Performance Index. Serious steps need to be taken to improve these systems.
While on the face of it such a move will raise howls from local school boards about usurping local control of schools, we find one aspect refreshing about the governor's suggestion. It is this: while first one governor after another in our lifetime have said that the schools of Georgia need major improvement, no matter what is proposed, year in and year out, little real improvement has come out of the many governors' ideas. Georgia still ranks mighty low in national educational attainment.
The reason most of the proposals fail is that local school board members see their election as a mandate to hold down taxes, reward friends with jobs within the district, and essentially care little about really improving education for the students. These school board members, particularly in rural areas of the state, seem to be in office mostly to look out for themselves and their friends, not the students.
Yet, what "local control" really means is that politicians have their own agenda, and it's not necessarily good for the school system or the students. Therefore, Governor Deal's position in moving to give control of failing local schools to others, should at least draw considerable debate, and is at least a different approach.
The proposed bill to take over failing schools suggests that the state take over only 20 failing systems at a time. That makes sense, as this at least "tests" such an idea. But it would make slow progress if a total of 140 schools are failing. Better to try such an innovation, however, than do nothing, as has been the practice in previous years.
Two ideas about schools. It's good to see innovative suggestions. Yet every idea isn't worthwhile. Let's pray the Legislature makes the right choice, dumps electing superintendents, and give consideration to Governor Deal's idea about failing schools.
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Editor, the Forum:
I enjoyed reading your criticism of our governor even though I completely disagree with your point of view about him. Maybe now you can understand how the majority of citizens in our country feel about our current president.
Governor Deal has accomplished many great things for Georgia, yet you, like most with the opposing views, choose to pick out small issues to disagree with, and conveniently forget the positive actions. In the case of the current president it is much easier to be in disagreement as the majority of the country's citizens oppose most of his actions and most of his choices of inaction, such as his lack of terrorism policy.
I actually ended up laughing when I read your criticism of his choices of appointments, and would love to have you research which of our past governors haven't favored their home regions when making appointments. I doubt you would find any that haven't done exactly the same methods.
I do enjoy reading your opinions however, even when I completely disagree.
Columnist paints glorious picture of liberal nirvana
Editor, the Forum:
George Wilson paints
a glorious picture of Liberal Nirvana, a paradise on earth where all is
green, friendly, clean, healthy and problem free. If we could just find
a new place to populate with like-minded people, creating a new nation
founded on the beliefs of the heart of the Democratic Party!
The City of Sugar Hill is planning a robust calendar of concert events in 2015, ranging from rhythm and blues to rock, and many other musical presentations at its Bowl behind City Hall.
The acts kick off with the City's Rockin' Barbecue Blast on April 18 featuring alternative-rock band, Sister Hazel. Also in April, Sugar Hill will host its Classic Rock and Car Show. This April 25 event will have Emmy-winning Fab Four, a Beatles tribute band from Las Vegas.
Sugar Hill will foster support of local artists, as Atlanta's own, A1A, will showcase their talent in the city's Cinco de Mayo fiesta on May 5. A1A was awarded the 1992 Margaritaville-sponsored Jimmy Buffet Sound-Alike Contest and is recognized as the first and only Jimmy Buffet Tribute Band.
May will round out with the internationally-renown Michael Jackson tribute band, Who's Bad, from New York. This band will restore the glory of the sights and sounds of the "King of Pop" when the city hosts its 90s Forever Concert on May 23.
Sugar Hill will welcome summer on the eve of the solstice with its Boots and Beats Concert on June 20. Texas country singer, Danielle Bradbery will headline the event.
July will feature the City's Sparks in the Park in one of the Southeast's largest fireworks spectacles. The Official Blues Brothers Revue will take center stage with an entertaining act that embodies the authentic spirit of the Blues Brothers.
September will be the inaugural Fall Into Love event, that will be featured at the City's central venue, The Bowl. Locally grown RandB Inc.'s nine-piece ensemble will enchant spectators with its melodies that have entertained for over five decades. The city's concert series will usher in the fall season with Sugar Rush. The Grand Finale scheduled for October 17 will highlight Georgia's own Travis Tritt. He has been recognized as among elite artists as a member of the Grand Ole Opry since 1992.
Snellville to feature 2 local artists at City Hall gallery soon
Two local artists, Donna Biggee and Diana Thurmon will bring their work to Snellville City Hall beginning in March, which will be on display through the end of April.
A reception, presented by the Snellville Arts Commission, featuring the artists' work, will take place from 1:30 to 4 p.m. on March 8. The gallery, located in the City Hall Community Room, 2342 Oak Road, is open from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday.
Biggee, a multi-award-winning artist, has gained recognition with her ability to capture light and reflection in vivid landscapes. A representational artist with an emphasis in oils and pastels, Biggee's works are inspired by the expressed beauty in nature, she said. A resident of Snellville, Biggee has been an artist since childhood.
Ms. Biggee is the winner of many national juried exhibition awards and honors. She is a signature member of the Southeastern Pastel Society, Oil Painters of America, Pastel Society of America, and Atlanta Artists Center, Biggee has developed her national reputation. In 2014, Biggee received the Master Circle designation with the International Association of Pastel Societies. Her work has been shown throughout the U.S. and can be found in both private and corporate collections.
Thurmon's philosophy is, "I paint because I must." A Grayson resident, she says: "Art has become so much a part of who I wish to be that when I am not in the midst of creating a piece I am probably visualizing another in my mind. There's a sign in my studio that proclaims 'This is my Happy Place' and that's very, very true."
For years Thurmon painted animal and pet portraits primarily, but landscapes, figures and even abstract forms are often in her repertoire now. Most observers of her work comment on the strong, vibrant colors that she is not hesitant to use. In the more than half a century she has been painting, she's accumulated her share of awards and ribbons and her works are found in collections in the Midwest and the South.
She has illustrated
three books including the award-winning "Story of a Lifetime."
Mostly self-taught, she now teaches adults in her Grayson studio on a
limited basis. She is a member of Art Station in Stone Mountain and Kudzu
Art Zone in Norcross.
An aging-in-place facility is one residential component that's been missing in Peachtree Corners. But that need will be filled within a few months with the opening of Noble Village Senior Living Center on Spalding Drive.
The facility, expected
to open the end of May, will offer cottages, apartments for independent
living as well as assisted living for up to 200 residents age 55 and over.
Mayor Mike Mason says: "We have been especially lacking in good retirement housing. That's why Noble Village is an important addition to Peachtree Corners. You address not only a need for our aging population, but for our city in particular."
One of the fastest segments of the city's population is those over 65 - and that age group is expected to grow by over 50 percent in the next 20 years noted the mayor. That fact has huge implications on the city's plans for housing, transportation, parks and creating a pedestrian-friendly community.
Noble Village is within the Livable Center Initiative study area where work ia underway to develop a plan for a central business district and town center, which will essentially be the design for the heart of the city. Noble Village is located at 5701 Spalding Drive, Peachtree Corners. For more information: call 770-416-0502, or visit www.noblevillage-spalding.com.
My husband and I just tried the new Your Pie in Suwanee. We both did the "build your own" pizza option for $7.99. We selected the wheat crust and then unlimited toppings. Some of mine were artichoke hearts, chicken, pecans, carrot, kale and spinach, etc.! Mark had various meats and broccoli and cheese! The employees were wearing their "Express your inner pizza" shirts. The place was pretty busy, especially for the middle of the week. Everything was tasty! Your Pie is located at 3370 Lawrenceville-Suwanee Road in Suwanee. It opens daily at 11 a.m.
A poet, essayist, cardiologist, and lecturer, John Stone also served during his varied career as professor of medicine, associate dean, and director of admissions at the Emory University School of Medicine. A frequent contributor to the New York Times Magazine, Journal of the American Medical Association, and Discover, Stone achieved popularity and success as a teacher and writer who explored the link between medicine and literature.
Stone was named Emory's best clinical professor three times and received awards from the Georgia Writers Association, the Council of Authors and Journalists, and the Mississippi Institute of Arts and Letters. In 1992 he received a Governor's Award in the Humanities, and in 2007 he was inducted into the Georgia Writers Hall of Fame.
The grandson of a general practitioner, John Henry Stone was born February 7, 1936, in Jackson, Miss. Stone received his B.A. from Millsaps College in Jackson in 1958 and his M.D. from Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis, Mo., in 1962. He completed his residency in medicine and cardiology at the University of Rochester in New York and a fellowship in cardiology at Emory University, where he took a position with the medical school faculty in 1969.
At Emory, Stone created one of the first medical school courses combining literature and medicine. He also taught the course for several years, beginning in 1993, at England's Oxford University as part of Emory's Summer Studies Program. From 1974 to 1985 he worked full time at Atlanta's Grady Memorial Hospital, founding and directing its emergency-medicine residency program.
Stone began his literary career with The Smell of Matches, published by Rutgers University Press in 1972, which won an award from the Georgia Writers Association. Stone's witty, insightful, and sensitive poetry examines the common threads between literature and medicine. In the tradition of another physician-poet, William Carlos Williams, Stone believed his duty as a writer was to prepare for "a good death."
Stone's unpublished project, A Bridge across the Dark, chronicles his responses to the sudden illness and death in 1991 of his wife of 30 years, Sarah Lucretia Crymes. He read excerpts from the work at Emory University in 1996. His final published work, Music from Apartment 8: New and Selected Poems (2004), includes poems exploring the poet's relationship with his mother, his travels to the Middle East, and his love of classical music.
Stone also wrote or co-edited several medical texts, including Principles and Practices of Emergency Medicine (1978). Stone died in Atlanta of cancer on Nov. 6, 2008.
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Soil Basics for Vegetable Gardening: The most important component of plant growth is the soil. It provides the plants with vital nutrients and water. Having a basic understanding of soil and its role will help you have an attractive, healthy lawn and garden. The event will take place from 6:30 to 8 p.m. February 17, in the Snellville City Hall Community Room, 2342 Oak Road. The class is free, but registration is required to plan for materials. Register by February 10 by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.
State-of-the-County address, by County Commission Chairman Charlotte Nash, Thursday, February 19, starting at 11:30 a.m., at Gwinnett Center. Cost is $75 per person. To register, go online here.
(NEW) Annual Gala of the Gwinnett Medical Center Foundation, Saturday, February 21, starting at 5 p.m. Speaker will be Dr. Ben Carson, an American author and retired neurosurgeon, who successfully separated twins co-joined at the head. In 2008, he was awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom by President George W. Bush. More info.
(NEW) Winter Celebration of Excellence, Monday, February 23, at 7 p.m. at Norcross High Media Center. Come enjoy an evening highlighting Norcross High School's Fine Arts programs, the NHS Foundation, and its upcoming spring Gala and Hall of Fame inductees. There will be displays of NHS student artwork; jazz and orchestra ensemble performances; and performances by drama students. RSVP here.
Gwinnett Extension Plant Sale, now through March 11.
Go to this site
for order forms or call 678-377-4010. Form is also available at our office
at 750 South Perry Street, Lawrenceville.
Quince Girl and Sweet 16 Expo will be March 14 from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. at Pinckneyville Park Community Recreation Center in Berkeley Lake. This free event will feature do-it-yourself sessions for creating special invitations, party favors and centerpieces. Interactive demonstrations and party planning professionals will be on hand. Interested exhibitors and vendors can call 678-277-0920 for more information. Pinckneyville Park Community Recreation Center is located at 4650 Peachtree Industrial Boulevard.
(NEW) Spring/Summer Vegetable Gardening: Learn about the many vegetables that can be grown in the area and how to care for them to produce a bountiful harvest. The event is 6:30 to 8 p.m. March 17 in the Snellville City Hall Community Room, 2342 Oak Road. The class is free, but registration is required to plan for materials. Register by March 10 by emailing email@example.com.
Centuries of Childhood: An American Story, now at the Gwinnett Environmental and Heritage Center, continues through April 30. Visitors connect the stories of American history to their own experiences by learning about the lives of five historical children and their families. A supplementary exhibit is titled Georgia's Sacred Soils. This exhibit blends science and history through the exploration of Georgia's geology and its colonial history. Both exhibits are included in the price of admission to the EHC. More info: www.gwinnettEHC.org.
Introduction to Drawing class at Kudzu Art Zone in Norcross, through March 3, 6:15 p.m. until 8 p.m. Instructor is Lucy Brady. This basic course will show students that they can draw; it is a skill that anyone can learn. It will train the eye to see better, touch on composition, perspective and comparative measurement to assure proper proportions. Equipment required is a sketchbook, pencils and an eraser. Cost is $120 for members, and $130 for non- members. For more information call at 770-840-9844 or see the website.
Gwinnett Senior Games will be from April 1 to May 13 for Gwinnett seniors age 50 and older. Deadline to sign up to participate in the activity is March 13. Those interested can download information at www.GwinnettSeniorGoldenGames.org. The fee is $15, and for this, you receive two meals, a T-shirt, a gift and a medal if you are good enough at that event. There are over 30 events included in the overall activity. Registration forms may also be picked up at Gwinnett Senior Centers.
MORE EEB PERSPECTIVE
Gwinnett Forum publisher Elliott Brack suggests that Gwinnett County needs a long-range list of continuing objectives for improving the county. Read more.
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