The Kiwanis Club of Marietta, an organization dedicated to improving the world one child and one community at a time, understands the importance of rallying support for members of the community in their time of need. Recently, several members of the organization, with some being members being Chamber leadership and dedicated volunteers, came together in an outpouring of love, support and compassion for the family of a fallen soldier.
Sergeant 1st Class Omar Forde, from Marietta, lost his life in battle leaving his young family and mother behind to mourn his memory. He was killed, along with five fellow soldiers, in Afghanistan on December 17, 2013. SFC Forde, an only child of a single mother from Jamaica, was an outstanding student and athletic stand-out at Kennesaw Mountain High School. Upon graduation in lieu of accepting a football scholarship, SFC Forde gallantly chose to join the Army and serve his country. Prior to deployment, he married his high school sweetheart and had two children.
Following SFC Forde’s tragic death, the Marietta Kiwanis Club learned of a need for flags to line the streets of Mrs. Forde’s subdivision in honor of the fallen soldier, after she left town to retrieve the remains of her son for the funeral. Knowing the Kiwanis Club routinely placed flags throughout the community on major holidays to honor members of the armed services, members worked together to place 140 flags in a single afternoon, throughout the subdivision where SFC Forde grew up. Seeing the flags alongside the neighborhood’s holiday decorations truly inspired some neighbors in the community.
In addition to placing flags in the neighborhood, some members of the Marietta Kiwanis Club helped by going to the airport in the early morning hours to honor SFC Forde’s remains as he returned home. Members also attended visitation with the family and participated in funeral services. Together, many members prayed for strength, faith and grace for SFC Forde’s family, especially his two young children, who will only know their father through his gallant acts of bravery and ultimate sacrifice. Like the Chamber, the Kiwanis Club of Marietta values the military and the sacrifices made by the men and women who protect our country every day.
Donations for SFC Omar Forde’s Family
Donations to help Sergeant First Class Omar Forde’s family can be made in two ways. Megan, SFC Forde’s wife, is very appreciative of the outpouring concern and support from family, friends and strangers alike. Megan has set up an account for their sons, Ayden, 5, and Devery, 18 months, to help them as they face the future. You can donate by using PayPal, going through Megan’s email, email@example.com. If you use a credit card, you should select “goods or services” so you will not pay a fee. Please be aware if you use your credit card, Megan will have to be the fee on her end. The account she has set up is a savings account for the couple’s two young boys. You may also send a check directly to Megan at 1743 Sutter Woods Road, Junction City, KS 66441.
As one of the most influential pro-business advocates in Georgia, the Cobb Chamber understands the important role that small businesses play in the community and the economy. The Chamber prides itself on providing members with unparalleled resources to help their organizations grow and thrive in the business community. The U.S Small Business Administration, a federal government organization dedicated to providing support to small businesses across the nation, has implemented a new program to help drive the growth of business in urban communities.
The Emerging Leaders Initiative is an intensive training initiative aimed at accelerating high-potential businesses’ growth in America’s inner-cities. This comprehensive curriculum provides tools to catapult participating companies to the next level. By providing executives with the organizational framework and network resources needed to be successful, the program helps build sustainable companies and promote economic development in urban communities. In Atlanta, the Emerging Leaders initiative is proudly supported by a partnership of local businesses and economic development entities.
Over the course of several months, participants are given the opportunity to attend specialized workshops and develop relationships with their peers, city leaders and the financial community. Participants are required to actively participate in 60 to 80 hours of classroom instruction. The instructor-facilitated curriculum is designed to enable participating businesses to engage in focused development and expansion strategies, including options for accessing new capital and securing government contracts. Additionally, program participants get the opportunity to meet and work in smaller CEO Peer Mentoring Group sessions. The topics covered in the curriculum include business and leadership assessment, finances, marketing and sales, business development resources and growth action plan.
The program is open to the president, managing partner, CEO, CFO, or COO of small businesses located in Cobb County, among other counties in Georgia. Participating businesses must have been in active operation for at least three years, generated an average annual revenue of at least $400,000 not to exceed $10 million and have at least one employee besides the owner. The 2014 Emerging Leaders Initiative will begin on April 21, 2014 and is provided at no cost to participants.
For more information, visit sba.gov/emergingleaders, or contact Dorothy Atkins at 404-331-0100 ext. 305 or Charlotte Johnson at 404-331-0100 ext. 405. Formal expressions of interest must be received by midnight, March 21, 2014.
The Cobb Chamber is proud to congratulate more than 15 members for making Georgia Trend’s “100 Most Influential Georgians” list. The Georgia-based business, politics and economic development magazine recently released its 2014 power list in recognition of the most influential and powerful leaders in Georgia. The list honors influential citizens whose dedication and commitment continue to impact the daily lives of Georgians everywhere.
The Cobb Chamber is proud to honor the following members who made this year’s Most Influential list: Richard Anderson, CEO of Delta Airlines; Frank Blake, chairman and CEO of The Home Depot; Shan Cooper, vice president and general manager of Lockheed Martin; Tom Fanning, chairman, president and CEO of Southern Company; Douglas Hooker, executive director of the Atlanta Regional Commission; Donna Hyland, president and CEO of Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta; U.S. Senator Johnny Isakson; Reynold Jennings, president and CEO of WellStar Health Systems; Tim Lee, chairman of Cobb Board of Commissioners; Tad Leithead, president and CEO of Tad Leithead Advisors and chairman of the Cumberland Community Improvement District; Kelly L. Loeffler, VP of Corporate Affairs at Intercontinental Exchange; Georgia State Attorney General Sam Olens; Dan Papp, president of Kennesaw State University; and Sylvia Russell, CEO of AT&T Georgia.
In addition, the Cobb Chamber congratulates the following members who made Georgia Trend’s 2014 “Notables” list: Freddy Bensch, co-founder of “Big Kahuna” at Sweet Water Brewing Co.; David Connell, president and CEO of Cobb Chamber of Commerce; Thomas Gallagher, chairman, president and CEO of Genuine Parts Company; Amy Glennon, publisher of The Atlanta-Journal-Constitution; and Doug Hertz, president and CEO of United Distributors Inc.. As committed members of the Cobb Chamber, we are honored to celebrate your service and commitment to the community and Georgia at large.
It’s hard to imagine a better gift at the holidays. Today, a former Navy combat medic and his family received the keys to a mortgage-free home in Marietta, following the loss of their belongings in an apartment break-in last year.
Former Navy Petty Officer 3rd Class Deramichaelous Daniels moved to the Atlanta area following his eight-year tour as a hospital corpsman in Camp Pendleton, Calif., and Athens, Ga. During that time he was deployed with his unit as a combat medic in Iraq.
Then last year, while living in Lawrenceville, the family was the victim of an apartment break-in and all their valuables were stolen.
Today they received one of the most valuable gifts possible – a mortgage-free home, formerly a foreclosure, with the property donated by Wells Fargo through Operation Homefront and its Homes on the Homefront program.
“My wife Mistie and I have discussed owning a home ever since getting married,” Daniels said. “This gives us an amazing opportunity and will give our children a place to run around and just enjoy their new life. Everything lately has felt like such an uphill battle, and this is the best news that we have had since my leaving the Navy.”
The house at 2522 Hampton Valley Drive in Marietta has plenty of room for their two boys, ages 7 and 1. The two-story has more than 2,200 square feet with four bedrooms, two-and-a-half baths and a two-car garage.
Their home is one of 65 Wells Fargo has donated to veterans this year as part of a commitment to donate $30 million in homes to those who have served in the nation’s armed forces.
“These are extraordinary men and women who have given so much through military service,” said Rob Pridemore, area manager for Wells Fargo Home Mortgage for Cobb County. “This is a natural outgrowth of our commitment to giving back and revitalizing communities.”
About Operation Homefront
A national nonprofit, Operation Homefront leads more than 4,500 volunteers with nationwide presence who provide emergency and other financial assistance to the families of service members and wounded warriors. Operation Homefront has met more than 750,000 needs of military families since its inception in 2002. Nationally, 95 percent of total revenue donated to Operation Homefront goes directly to programs that provide support to our military families. For more information, go to www.OperationHomefront.net.
About Wells Fargo
Wells Fargo & Company (NYSE: WFC) has more than 5,000 team members in the Atlanta area and serves consumers in the area through some 200 bank stores. Wells Fargo is a nationwide, diversified, community-based financial services company with $1.5 trillion in assets. Founded in 1852 and headquartered in San Francisco, Wells Fargo provides banking, insurance, investments, mortgage, and consumer and commercial finance through more than 9,000 stores, 12,000 ATMs, and the Internet (wellsfargo.com), and has offices in more than 35 countries to support the bank’s customers who conduct business in the global economy. With more than 270,000 team members, Wells Fargo serves one in three households in the United States. Wells Fargo & Company was ranked No. 25 on Fortune’s 2013 rankings of America’s largest corporations. Wells Fargo’s vision is to satisfy all our customers’ financial needs and help them succeed financially. Wells Fargo perspectives are also available at blog.wellsfargo.com. In 2012, the Company invested $315.8 million in grants to 19,500 nonprofits, and team members contributed more than 1.5 million volunteer hours around the country. For more information, please visit: www.wellsfargo.com/about/csr.
Graduate program moves up in national ranking for 2013
KENNESAW, Ga. (Nov. 15, 2013) — The part-time MBA program at Kennesaw State University’s Michael J. Coles College of Business was ranked 22nd nationwide and second in Georgia by Bloomberg Businessweek in its 2013 business school rankings.
Kennesaw State’s ranking moved up seven spots from the 2011 survey, becoming the top rated part-time MBA program at a Georgia public university.
“We are proud to be recognized among the leading business schools in Georgia and the nation,” said Kathy Schwaig, dean of the Coles College. “This ranking relies heavily on student input and post-MBA outcomes. Our rise in the rankings shows that our students are pleased with their MBA experience, and are succeeding after graduation.”
According to Bloomberg Businessweek, part-time business programs play a vital role for working professionals who are unable to attend business school full time, but wish to advance their careers. Coles College enrolls more than 350 part-time MBA students. The self-paced program offers courses in the evenings and on weekends, with minimesters in May, August and December.
“Coles College is dedicated to providing a valuable and relevant business education,” said Sheb True, associate dean for graduate business and executive programs at the Coles College of Business. “This ranking recognizes the quality of our students and faculty, and their pursuit to improve lives through business and business education. We look forward to continuing to grow and improve, and to contribute to economic growth and development in the state.”
The Bloomberg Businessweek ranking is based on six factors: student survey results, academic quality, post-MBA outcomes, teaching quality, caliber of classmates and curriculum. The 2013 rankings recognize 78 part-time MBA programs around the country.
Coles College continues to be ranked for its MBA programs. In 2013, its part-time MBA program was ranked 43rd in the nation by U.S. News.
For more information on the Coles College’s MBA programs, please visit http://coles.kennesaw.edu/graduate/mba
For more information on the Bloomberg Businessweek rankings, go to
Six pedestrian bridges along Cobb County’s 12.8-mile Silver Comet Trail will be closed to the public this winter while Cobb County Department of Transportation (CCDOT) crews repair or replace pedestrian bridge ends over Powder Springs Creek, Lucille Creek, Noses Creek, Olley Creek, Nickajack Creek and Cooper Lake Road.
The repair work, funded by the 2011 SPLOST, will result in consecutive closures of each pedestrian bridge from Jan. to April 2014, resulting in NO ACCESS and NO DETOURS across the bridges during construction. At the same time the pedestrian bridge work is being conducted, additional crews will be improving other areas along the Silver Comet Trail by repairing fences, drainage systems and grading.
“The repairs will preserve the original historic pedestrian bridges,” says Faye DiMassimo, Director of Cobb County Department of Transportation. “Once the work is completed, the pedestrian bridges will be reopened providing safe access to all who enjoy using them.”
Cobb County officials strongly advise the public to pay close attention to all warning signs and stay out of CLOSED construction zones, as there will be severe drop offs, some as deep as ten feet, which could cause serious injury or death to anyone ignoring the posted warnings.
Not every area under construction will be completed closed off to the public. CCDOT officials warn trail users to slow down when approaching all signs, and in areas not completely closed, and for bike users, be prepared to dismount and walk through.
More work will be conducted on the Trail next spring where a rolling trail closure will occur as the entire Silver Comet trail is resurfaced. The combined projects will result in the Cobb County Silver Comet Trail looking like a new trail.
Built between 1890 and 1904, the 61.5-mile Silver Comet Trail follows the abandoned railroad line once traveled by Silver Comet train passengers traveling from Atlanta and Birmingham to New York, Philadelphia and Washington. CCDOT converted the trail into a scenic 12.8 mile paved multi-use trail in the 1990’s. The County section of the trail begins in Smyrna and travels west through southern parts of the County.
Outstanding Branding Work for Cobb & Douglas Public Health, Millenia 3 Honored
Competing against nearly 4,000 entries from across the U.S. and the world, 524 Creative was honored this week with three Silver Davey Awards for its exceptional marketing and branding work for Cobb & Douglas Public Health and Millenia 3.
The Davey Awards honor the finest creative work from the best small firms, agencies and companies worldwide. They are sanctioned and judged by the International Academy of the Visual Arts, an invitation-only body consisting of top-tier professionals from a “Who’s Who” of acclaimed media, advertising and marketing firms.
524 received a Silver Davey Award honoring their complete rebranding initiative with Cobb & Douglas Public Health. The scope of work included a new logo, brand standards guide, corporate identity pieces, website, brochures, billboards, and more. Dr. Jack Kennedy, District Health Director, was involved in the efforts throughout.
“Our rebranding initiative was all encompassing in terms of scope and significance to our organization,” Dr. Kennedy said. “524 Creative launched a powerful, targeted rebranding campaign that reflects our dedication to the health and safety of Cobb and Douglas county residents. We are so happy to have 524 as our ongoing partner to help us expand our outreach into the community.”
For its work with Kennesaw-based Millenia 3, whose clients include ABC, Discovery, Turner Broadcasting, CNN, and TNT to name a few, 524 has been honored with two Silver Davey Awards; one for the content of the company’s brochure and one for the design of it.
Robert Owen, President and CEO of Millenia 3, was thrilled that 524′s work for his company has been so prestigiously recognized. “524 did what no other agency had been able to do for Millenia 3—help us articulate our uniqueness to clients. We manage traffic services in television like no one else in the industry; after working with 524 for our new logo, website, collateral and event management, we are reaching new clients in a powerful way,” he said.
524 Creative Principal, Scott Wright, added, “The Davey Awards are highly esteemed in our industry. We are extremely proud to have won three of them for two amazing clients that trusted us with their brands, which is the most valuable asset of any organization. That is our ultimate goal—to help build and elevate our clients’ brands. In both instances, I think we hit a home run.”
About The Davey Awards
The Davey Awards exclusively honor the “Davids” of creativity, the finest small firms, agencies and companies in the world. David defeated the giant Goliath with a big idea and a little rock – the sort of thing small firms do each year. The annual International Davey Awards honors the achievements of the “Creative Davids” who derive their strength from big ideas, rather than big budgets.
The Davey Awards is the leading awards competition specifically for smaller firms, where firms compete with their peers to win the recognition they deserve. Please visit www.daveyawards.com for more information.
About 524 Creative
524 Creative is an award-winning, integrated marketing firm located in Marietta, Georgia. The firm combines the talent of proven marketing and branding professionals to create design innovations that capture attention and inspire action. 524 Creative helps businesses and organizations with branding, strategy, websites, social media and other marketing solutions that produce results, while staying true to their clients’ ideals.
For nearly eight years, 524 Creative has provided effective and successful communication strategies for a myriad of clients ranging from entrepreneurial start-ups to multi-million dollar entities. Find out more at www.524creative.com.