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Kennesaw Company Named Walmart’s Veteran-Owned Supplier of the Year

November 12, 2019

Beaumont Products, Inc., a leading manufacturer of household consumer products has been named the Veteran-Owned Supplier of the Year by Walmart, Inc. Companies considered for the honor must be owned by veterans and supply products made in America.  Beaumont makes all of its products in Kennesaw and is owned by Hank Picken, a Vietnam veteran. Beaumont will be recognized during a corporate-wide ceremony at Walmart’s headquarters in Bentonville, Ark., on Veterans Day, Nov. 11. Receiving the honor on behalf of the company will be founder and chairman Picken and his son, Jeff Picken, who serves as Beaumont Products’ president and CEO.

Walmart’s annual Veterans Day Home Office Celebration will be hosted by John Furner, CEO of Walmart U.S., and facilitated by Brynt Parmeter, senior director for military programs. The event will honor the country’s veterans and military spouses. It also will spotlight veteran-owned businesses that manufacture products in the United States, and their positive impact on local communities and veterans.

“Walmart has been a valuable customer of Beaumont Products since 1996, with products sold in a variety of departments within its stores,” said Picken. “We are extremely grateful for this honor, and are proud of the fact that we manufacture in the U.S. We feel that this honor validates our commitment to our Nation and Veterans.”

At the beginning of 2019, Beaumont acquired the Hero Clean brand of laundry detergents and cleaners. Beaumont is proud to continue Hero Clean’s mission of giving back to veterans, this year giving to charities such as Hire Heroes, Operation Home Front and Tunnel to Towers.

Picken has been in the consumer products industry since the early 1970s. He is a CPA in the State of New York, has a bachelor of arts degree in government and law from Lafayette College and a master’s of business administration from the Amos Tuck School of Business Administration at Dartmouth College. He served in the United States Army as an infantry captain, with a tour of duty in Vietnam in 1966 and 1967.

About Beaumont Products

Founded in 1991 and located in Kennesaw, Beaumont Products is a leading manufacturer of premium, eco-friendly consumer products designed for air care, general cleaning and personal care. Proudly made in the U.S.A., Beaumont manufactures several brands sold nationwide and abroad that include: Citrus Magic, Veggie Wash, Clearly Natural, Citrus II, Farmers’ Market, Trewax, Dermatone, Clearly Magic, Grease Monkey Wipes, Bug Band, and Hero Clean. The company employs approximately 150 people, including five veterans.

City of Marietta Releases New Upgraded Version of MyMarietta App

November 12, 2019

The City of Marietta’s Information Technology Department is pleased to announce that it has released a new, upgraded version of its “MyMarietta” App which is now available for download on the App Store or Google Play.

The upgraded version of the app keeps the features of the previous version but adds more capabilities. Now, not only can you view your utility bill, but customers can also pay their monthly charges and report and view the Marietta Power and Water outage maps within the app along with reporting any issue within the City via the citizen request feature. City residents can now view and pay their property tax bills without ever needing to drive to City Hall – although we do have free parking for our customers!

The “MyMarietta” app also has links to download the City’s award-winning Sanitation “TrashTalk” app and the TravelSafely app. By downloading the “MyMarietta” app you will have direct access to the Downtown Square parking map, the City’s website and directory, and the City’s YouTube channel. Additionally, you will be able to utilize our new chatbot system which will allow you to ask direct questions and receive answers immediately, this feature will be frequently updated.

To download the app today, search for “MyMarietta” both in the App Store and Google Play. If you have the previous version, please check your mobile settings to upgrade.

A Community Gives … The 34th Annual Thanks for Giving Program, November 20 – 23

November 12, 2019

The Center for Family Resources will be holding its 34th annual Thanks for Giving holiday food distribution program November 20-23, at IAMAW Local Lodge 709, 1032 S. Marietta Parkway SE, Marietta, 30060.

The annual program relies on the commitment and generosity of the Cobb County community. Schools, civic groups, churches and corporate organizations across the county host drives to collect holiday food items, which are distributed to struggling local families in time for them to prepare a homemade Thanksgiving meal. Alongside the green beans, stuffing mixes and other traditional holiday ingredients, the food boxes include a grocery store gift certificate for a turkey, ham or other meat of the family’s choice. And, because the week of Thanksgiving can be a strain on families’ food budgets while children are home from school, the Thanks for Giving boxes also pack extra grocery items, such as peanut butter and breakfast cereal, to provide quick meals and lessen parents’ anxieties about feeding their children.

The Center for Family Resources thanks the following lead sponsors of the 2019 Thanks for Giving program. Their generous support will provide as many as 1,000 Cobb County Thanksgiving meals to local families and individuals:

  • Platinum Sponsor: Genuine Parts Company
  • Presenting Sponsor: Publix Super Markets Charities
  • Great Gatherer: Lockheed Martin Aeronautics Company
  • Bountiful Benefactors: Cobb EMC Community Foundation; IAMAW Local Lodge 709
  • Plentiful Providers: Arylessence, Inc.; Blue Sky Exhibits, LLC; Clinton & Cindy Harkins; Comcast; E. Smith Heating & Air Conditioning, Inc.; Henssler Financial; Lynn Maus; Maxwell Chase Technologies/Aptar Atlanta; R&R Electrical, Inc.; Renasant Bank; Stephen Owens; Tri-State Utility Products, Inc.; Unique Environmental Landscapes

Thanks also to the many other local sponsors and donors who have contributed to the program to help ensure all families registered to receive food boxes will be served, including those who conducted and donated to food drives benefiting the Thanks for Giving program.

Arrangements to pick up donated food items to benefit Thanks for Giving will be made with participating schools. All other organizations hosting a food drive are reminded to drop off food items at IAMAW Local Lodge 709 between 9 a.m. and 4 p.m. on November 20 or 21. Families who have pre-registered to receive a Thanks for Giving box will pick up their Thanks for Giving holiday box either Friday, November 22or Saturday, November 23.

For more information on the Center for Family Resources and the Thanks for Giving program, please visit

About The Center for Family Resources

Since 1960, the Center for Family Resources has annually helped more than 10,000 low-income families with temporary financial and food assistance, housing, and employment and education services. By “empowering families to help themselves,” the staff at the Center for Family Resources is committed to breaking the cycle of poverty by helping families acquire the resources needed to become independent and self-sufficient.

KSU Students Re-imagine Shelters for the Homeless

November 7, 2019

Before enrolling at Kennesaw State University, architecture student Nicholas Halford spent his free time volunteering around Columbus, Ga., working to feed and shelter the local homeless population.

Nicholas Halford and team Community Corners
Nicholas Halford and team Community Corners

It was during that time that he befriended Pop, a local homeless man who earned his nickname by the Pop-Tarts beanie that he frequently wore. When speaking to Pop one day, Halford recalled him saying that a five-minute conversation meant more to him than someone offering a $5 bill.

“That’s been something that has stuck with me ever since, and really opened my eyes to the broader issue of homelessness,” he said.

Guided by that experience, Halford was among the nearly two dozen students who participated in the Mad Houser Hi Hat Competition, an extracurricular event in which students across Kennesaw State’s two campuses formed teams to design and conceptualize structures which could be used by the homeless population in the greater Atlanta area. The competition, which opened in August, culminated this week with team presentations coinciding with the University’s Homelessness Awareness Week, a week-long experience dedicated to increasing awareness of homelessness in the local community and on college campuses.

Held by KSU’s Campus Awareness, Resource and Empowerment (CARE) Services program and the Department of Architecture in support of Mad Housers, an Atlanta-based nonprofit dedicated to providing shelter to the homeless, the competition challenged students across multiple disciplines to refine the design of a Mad Housers shelter, known as the Hi Hat. The Hi Hat is a simplistic and utilitarian structure designed to temporarily shelter the homeless and improve their quality of life.

The winning team: Steven Yang, architecture student; Christine Vu, architecture student; and Nelida Gallardo, integrative studies student
The winning team: Steven Yang, architecture student; Christine Vu, architecture student; and Nelida Gallardo, integrative studies student

For the competition, students were required to form teams that had at least one architecture student, one construction management or engineering student and up to four students studying in any other degree program offered by the University. Designs were judged on a number of criteria, including sustainability, health and welfare, technology system, alignment with Mad Houser’s goals, and overall design quality. On Tuesday, teams presented their work inside KSU’s Architecture Gallery using colorful posters and scale models of their proposed designs. Cash prizes were awarded to first and second place teams, with the winners receiving additional funding to build a full-scale version of their design. In all, four teams entered the competition and presented their work this week. The projects will be on display through Nov. 16.

The winning team, Hoot Hoot, was praised for its holistic approach to improving the Hi Hat by adding additional functionality within the proposed $300 to $500 building price range. The team’s shelter included a second floor with storage compartments tucked under the stairs, a rooftop garden and the option to include solar power.

“We also designed it so that it would be appealing enough that someone would want to live there,” said team captain Nelida Gallardo.

Hi Hat competition team

An integrative studies major focusing on sustainability, education and leadership, Gallardo said she felt the competition aligned with her lifelong goal of building sustainable structures. However, she didn’t know any architecture or engineering students who could help her form a team. A short while after hearing about the competition, she met and recruited architecture students Christine Vu and Steven Yang. Together, with construction management student Steven Kimble, they sought to design a safe space that “can give people a chance at a new perspective on life.”

“It meant a lot for us to be able to contribute to the conversation through this project,” Gallardo said. “I know that if it can make an impact here, then it has the potential to help the homeless regardless of where they are in the world.”

Halford, whose team Community Corners focused on creating a network of modular units to build a sense of community, said the interdisciplinary approach to the competition provided perspectives he might not have otherwise encountered. In addition to architecture students, his team was composed of students pursuing degrees in mechanical engineering and English.

“I feel like I learned from each of the projects presented,” said Halford, whose team finished second. “To me, the biggest takeaway may have been hearing from the folks at Mad Housers the real-world implications each of the designs have and how it could help meet their goals. It was super helpful to hear from their experience on such a large subject.”

Ed Akins, an associate professor of architecture who helped coordinate the event, said each of the designs presented has the potential to be used by Mad Housers.

“Each one of the entries brought forth ideas that can certainly benefit the future development of huts,” he said. “Seeing them all together allows us to bring together some of that synergy. It helps us understand how these many different perspectives can bring insight into design and tackle an important issue.”

The following students received recognition at the conclusion of the competition:

First place: Hoot Hoot – Nelida Gallardo, integrative studies; Christine Vu, architecture; Steven Yang, architecture; and Steven Kimble, construction management.

Second place: Community Corners – Nicholas Halford, architecture; Cameron Shaprio, architecture; Brendan Lydic, architecture; Justin Simes, architecture; Trevor Foster, mechanical engineering; and Daniela Vinueza, English.

524 Creative Scoops Four International Honors in 2019

October 31, 2019

Competing against thousands of entries from across the U.S. and the world, 524 Creative was honored this week with three Davey Awards for its exceptional marketing and design work for the Town Center Community Improvement District (CID) and YANMAR America and a W³ Award for the Town Center CID. Both prestigious award entities honor the most creative and powerful achievements in marketing and communication from a global pool of talent.

The 2019 Davey Awards competition recognizes distinction in creative work from the best small shops, firms and companies worldwide. It was administered and judged by the Academy of Interactive Visual Arts (AIVA), an invitation-only body consisting of top-tier professionals from acclaimed media, advertising and marketing firms. This year, 524 received a Gold Award for the development of the 2018 annual report microsite for Town Center CID; a Silver Award for the “Taking to the Skies” fundraising brochure for Town Center CID; and a Silver Award for new exhibit graphics for YANMAR America.

The W³ Awards celebrate digital excellence by honoring outstanding websites, web marketing, web video, apps & social content created by some of the best interactive agencies, designers, and creators worldwide. They are also sanctioned and judged by the AIVA. 524 won a W³ Silver Award for the Town Center CID’s annual report microsite, which was judged for its creativity, usability, navigation, functionality, visual design and ease of use.

Tracy Rathbone Styf, Executive Director of the Town Center CID, said, “We have had a longstanding relationship with 524 Creative that never fails to yield impressive and effective work. Part of the Town Center brand is setting trends within our industry and we are proud to have a partner who does the same in marketing and design. We are not the least bit surprised their designs were recognized on an international platform. We love what they create for the CID, and we are looking forward to more success together in the future.”

In turn, 524 Creative cited the quality of their clients as one of their strongest assets in the competitions: “Our clients are leaders in their industries, and it is an honor to support their marketing efforts and further develop their recognizable brands,” said Scott Wright, Principal of 524 Creative. “It is a privilege to work with them because they allow us to take chances and flex our creative muscles to find ways to make an even greater impact in their fields. That takes trust. The microsite project, for example, marked the first digital annual report to be released by a CID in the state of Georgia, so its multiple awards acknowledge that Town Center’s leadership is justified in taking risks. When working with YANMAR, we truly appreciate each other’s craftsmanship; each of their engines is hand-built by one person—the person who starts it, finishes it—and we can relate to and admire the dedication it takes to create a product you believe in.”

Commenting on the Silver Davey Award for the work done on behalf of YANMAR America, Delaney Langston, Business Process Improvement Manager, said, “524 Creative was the perfect partner to design the graphics for our new marine engine exhibit. We needed to convey a message that would speak to owners and operators of commercial workboats that use YANMAR engines. 524’s design reflected the rugged, industrial environment this audience can relate to, while also touting our brand’s top qualities and differentiators. They brought a clear and concise vision to life.”

About the Davey Awards

The Davey Awards exclusively honor the “Davids” of creativity, the finest small shops, firms and companies worldwide. David defeated the giant Goliath with a big idea and a little rock – the sort of thing small agencies 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 agencies as they compete with their peers to win the recognition they deserve. Please visit for more information.

About the W³ Awards

The W³ Awards celebrates digital excellence by honoring outstanding Websites, Web Marketing, Video, Mobile Sites/Apps & Social content created by some of the best interactive agencies, designers, and creators worldwide. Simply put, the W³ is the first major Web competition to be accessible to the biggest agencies, the smallest firms, and everyone in between. The W³ Awards is sanctioned and judged by the Academy of Interactive and Visual Arts, an invitation only body consisting of top-tier professionals from a “Who’s Who” of acclaimed media, advertising, and marketing firms. For more information about the W³ Awards, please visit, email The W³ Awards at or call 212-675-3555.

About 524 Creative

524 Creative is an award-winning marketing agency located in Marietta, Georgia. For nearly fifteen years, 524 Creative has recommended and implemented successful marketing strategies for clients ranging from entrepreneurial start-ups to multi-million-dollar entities. The agency combines the talent of proven marketing and branding professionals to marketing solutions that capture attention, inspire action and produce results.

Cobb Galleria Centre Named Among Best North American Convention Centers

October 24, 2019

Cobb Galleria Centre has been named one of North America’s best convention centers for trade shows and events by Exhibitor Media Group, which produces both EXHIBITOR magazine and Find It – Marketplace, the buyer’s guide to trade show products and services.

“We are honored to be chosen among an elite group of venues – and the only venue in Georgia – as a Top-20 convention center in North America,” said Michele Swann, General Manager and CEO of the Cobb Galleria Centre. “This designation is a tribute to our best-in-class professional staff and the leadership of the Cobb-Marietta Coliseum & Exhibit Hall Authority.”

Applicants were evaluated using a variety of criteria in five primary categories: Facility & Functionality, Location & Accommodations, Service & Execution, Expansions & Upgrades, and Honors & Awards. The evaluation also included a survey of event planners, show organizers, and exhibit managers who have recently hosted (or exhibited at) trade shows and events within each facility, as well as a review of entrants’ event spaces, primary selling points, nearby attractions, and innovations, conducted by a panel of corporate exhibit managers.

The highest-scoring venues were named among EXHIBITOR Magazine’s 2020 Centers of Excellence, and they will be featured in the November issue of EXHIBITOR, as well as via an online portal where readers can learn more about each of the 20 facilities that qualified for this honor.

“While individual exhibit managers rarely have a say in where their trade shows are held, they are often the ones most impacted by that decision. This is their opportunity to give credit where credit is due and celebrate the exhibitor-friendly venues that do their part to make trade shows and events as smooth, successful, and painless as possible,” said Travis Stanton, editor of EXHIBITOR magazine, noting that everything from the number of nearby hotel rooms to the cost and quality of Wi-Fi access can have a significant impact on exhibiting companies’ experience at events. “Simply by virtue of being included in this list, these facilities have proven their ability to host trade shows and events of all shapes and sizes while providing world-class service and state-of-the-art accommodations.”

For more information, visit and

About Cobb Galleria Centre

The Cobb Galleria Centre is located in the beautifully landscaped 88-acre Galleria complex in prestigious northwest Atlanta. Cobb Galleria Centre is Atlanta’s premier convention facility with 320,000 square feet of event space, four exhibition halls, 20 meeting rooms, four executive boardrooms and a grand ballroom. Cobb Galleria Centre had more than 411,000 visitors to 464 events in 2018, resulting in an overall economic impact of $172 million. For more information, visit and follow us on Facebook at, on Twitter at @CobbGalleria and on Instagram at

About Exhibitor Media Group
The leader in trade show and corporate event marketing education, Exhibitor Media Group publishes the award-winning EXHIBITOR magazine, a monthly publication featuring best practices in trade show marketing. EXHIBITOR’s learning events include: EXHIBITORLIVE, Best Practices in Trade Shows and Events; EXHIBITORFastTrak accelerated learning conferences; and EXHIBITOR eTrak, professional online learning. Exhibitor Media Group is also the founder and sponsor of CTSM (Certified Trade Show Marketer), the industry’s only university-affiliated professional certification program. Learn more at

Kaiser Permanente Enters Agreement with Humana Military to Offer TRICARE Prime to TRICARE Beneficiaries in Metro Atlanta

October 22, 2019

Kaiser Permanente, one of America’s leading health care providers and not-for-profit health plans, today announced an agreement with Humana Military to offer TRICARE Prime to TRICARE beneficiaries in metro Atlanta.

During TRICARE Open Season, which runs from November 11 – December 9, 2019, Kaiser Permanente will be available to about 60,000 TRICARE beneficiaries in metro Atlanta who are military retirees (under age 65), dependents of retirees or dependents of active duty personnel. The coverage will be effective beginning January 1, 2020.

TRICARE, is the health care program for uniformed service members, retirees and their families. Those enrolling in Kaiser Permanente’s TRICARE Prime option will receive health care within Kaiser Permanente facilities. Beneficiaries will maintain a relationship with Humana Military for eligibility, enrollment and benefits administration.

“We are proud to be a part of the future of military health care in metro Atlanta,” said Jim Simpson, regional president of Kaiser Permanente Georgia. “Our integrated, value-based care model will deliver high quality care at a lower cost for TRICARE beneficiaries.”

With Kaiser Permanente’s comprehensive approach to care, eligible TRICARE beneficiaries will have many care options to choose from – in person, email, phone or video. Additionally, online and mobile app access offers members the ability to schedule medical appointments, refill prescriptions and view medical and immunization history and lab results.

Those interested in learning more, can call 770-291-4430 or visit

About Kaiser Permanente:

Kaiser Permanente is committed to shaping the future of health care and is recognized as one of America’s leading health care providers and not-for-profit health plans. Kaiser Permanente has a mission to provide high-quality, affordable health care services and to improve the health of its members and the communities it serves. Care is focused on members’ total health and is guided by their personal Permanente Medical Group physicians, specialists and team of health care providers. Expert and caring medical staff are supported by industry-leading technology and tools for health promotion, disease prevention, state-of-the art delivery and world-class chronic disease management. Nationally, Kaiser Permanente serves more than 12.2 million members in eight states and the District of Columbia and operates 39 hospitals and more than 680 medical office buildings. As Georgia’s largest non-profit health plan, Kaiser Permanente has 315,000 members in 28 counties in metro Atlanta and four counties near Athens. For more information, visit