Skip to content

KSU brings an Accelerated Course in Crappie Fishing Strategy to Atlanta area

February 1, 2017

KSU’s College of Continuing and Professional Education is offering a new four-week course for anyone interested in crappie fishing, beginner to avid. Crappie University is taught by four of America’s top guides and pros. The four instructors have a combined experience in crappie fishing, guiding and crappie tournaments that exceeds 80 years.

“Crappie fishing is no longer just a cane pole and bobber sport, and the pursuit of this sport fish has never been more popular,” said Crappie University’s Founder Gary White. “Across the country, crappie is gaining on bass as the number one sport fish.”

Each Crappie University instructor has a technique he relies on most when the fishing gets tough. Techniques like dock-shooting, long-lining and spider-rigging are just a few of the many tips and methods that will be presented in this course.

“These instructors know exactly where to find the crappie in every season of the year,” White said. “They are crappie pros and guides who have developed their techniques through trial and error.”

KSU’s Crappie University instructional staff includes Barry Morrow, “the crappie coach.” Morrow is a full-time crappie guide in Oklahoma and Missouri. He has been featured on the Sportsman’s Channel and fishes several crappie trails that cross the country. Morrow has won three Crappie Masters events and is the back-to-back winner of the Missouri State Championship. He is known nationwide for helping coach anglers in the art of crappie “catching.”

Dan Saknini is a crappie tournament pro who lives on Lake Lanier. Saknini will share his knowledge and techniques of what works best for Lake Lanier and other lakes in the region.

Also on the instructional staff are Bill Dannenmueller and Sam Heaton.

Dannenmueller is the publisher of the popular online crappie magazine, “Crappie Now”. His tournament accomplishments are back-to-back Angler of the Year Titles with the Crappie Masters’ National Tournament Trail.

Heaton is often called the “dean of southern crappie anglers.” He has a longtime reputation as a crappie guide in the southeast, and is the former pro team manager for well-known fishing brands Spiderwire, Johnson Outdoors and BnM Poles.

“Crappie University is not a seminar, it’s an accelerated course in the strategies and techniques for becoming a better crappie angler,” White said. “Our instructors are the best-of-the-best on their respective topics.”

KSU’s Crappie University begins on Thursday, Feb. 16, and continues through Thursday, March 2. Class times are 7:30 to 9:30 p.m., and all four classes will be held at KSU Center. Course fee is $89 and covers all course materials, including samples of crappie lures and jig heads.

Registration for Crappie University can be completed online at or by calling 470-578-6765. For more information about Crappie University, visit

Scholarship Applications Available For Students who Live Near Atlanta-area Simon Centers

January 25, 2017

Atlanta-area Simon centers are once again proud to help a deserving graduating senior pay for college. Simon Youth Foundation, a national nonprofit that provides educational opportunities for at-risk high school students, is now looking for qualified applicants who live near Calhoun Premium Outlets, Lenox Square, Mall of Georgia, North Georgia Premium Outlets, Phipps Plaza, Sugarloaf Mills and Town Center at Cobb or in the surrounding communities.

Each year, Simon Youth Community Scholarships are awarded in every community across the country that is home to Simon, Mills or Premium Outlets centers. The application period is now open and ends on March 1, 2017. Students can apply online by visiting

Any student who will be graduating in the class of 2017 and lives in the community surrounding a Simon property is eligible. Applicants can check their eligibility by entering their ZIP code at Recipients will receive up to $1,500 to enroll in an accredited college, university, vocational or technical school.

In addition, eleven regional awards called “Awards of Excellence” will be given to top candidates. The regions eligible are Atlanta, Austin, Boston, Chicago, Dallas, Indianapolis, Miami, New York, Orange County (Ca.), Orlando, and Seattle/Tacoma. Students from these areas will have the opportunity to receive a $10,000 award ($2,500 for up to four years).
In 2016, the Simon Youth Foundation awarded $1.2 million to 300 students nationwide.
“The cost of college continues to rise, and SYF is proud to partner with the Atlanta-area Simon centers to award scholarships that will remove some of the financial obstacles that could otherwise prevent a student from achieving the dream of a college education,” said Dr. J. Michael Durnil, SYF President and CEO.

The 2017 SYF Community Scholarship recipients will be selected by International Scholarship and Tuition Services, Inc. (ISTS), a third-party administrator. Students are selected based on a variety of criteria, including financial need, academic performance, leadership skills and participation in school and community activities. Those students who are the first in their family to pursue a post secondary education will also be given close consideration.

Recipients will be notified in May.

About SYF
SYF is a national non-profit that partners with public school districts to open dropout recovery academies inside Simon shopping malls. The organization now has 29 Simon Youth Academies in 12 states. In the organization’s 18-year history, more than 14,000 students have earned their diploma and more than $16 million in scholarships have been awarded. Visit or follow us on Facebook, Twitter (@simon_youth), or Instagram (@simonyouthfoundation) for updates.

About Simon
Simon is a global leader in retail real estate ownership, management and development and an S&P100 company (Simon Property Group, NYSE:SPG). Our industry-leading retail properties and investments across North America, Europe and Asia provide shopping experiences for millions of consumers every day and generate billions in annual retail sales. For more information, visit

Saint Leo University honored in Best Online Programs, Best Online Programs for Veterans

January 24, 2017

st leoSaint Leo University was named as providing two of the best online programs in United States, according to the 2017 U.S. News & World Report’s Best Online Programs edition and we are lucky enough to have three teaching locations right here in the metro Atlanta area (Gwinnett, Morrow and Marietta).

Specifically, Saint Leo University was ranked high in the Best Online Programs for bachelor’s degrees (tied for 59th) and was named to the Best Online Bachelor’s Programs for Veterans list (tied for 37th).

This is the sixth year U.S. News & World Report has collected data from online/distance education programs. The periodical assessed 1,328 online degree programs.

The university began offering online programs in 1998 through its Center for Online Learning. Online education now is part of Saint Leo WorldWide, the division that includes the COL and the university’s more than 40 teaching locations in seven states.

“Saint Leo University is very proud to have its online bachelor’s and veterans programs recognized in the U.S. News & World Report’s Best Online Programs rankings again this year,” said Dr. Melanie Storms, vice president of Saint Leo WorldWide. “With the recent creation of our new WorldWide division, online and distance education are a renewed area of focus for Saint Leo. We remain committed to providing quality, values-based education that offers maximum flexibility, meeting our students at their point of need.”

U.S. News assessed schools based on four general categories: student engagement; faculty credentials and training; student services and technology; and peer reputation. Full rankings can be found at

This recognition follows Saint Leo being named in September 2016 as one of the best regional universities and best values in higher education in the 2017 U.S. News & World Report’s Best Colleges. Saint Leo ranked 62nd among Regional Universities-South. In addition, the university was named as one of the Best Value Regional Universities-South.
About Saint Leo University
Saint Leo University ( is a modern Catholic teaching university that is firmly grounded in the liberal arts tradition and the timeless Benedictine wisdom that seeks balanced growth of mind, body, and spirit. The Saint Leo University of today is a private, nonprofit institution that creates hospitable learning communities wherever our students want to be or need to be, whether that is a campus classroom, a web-based environment, an employer’s worksite, a military base, or an office park. We welcome people of all faiths and of no religious affiliation, and encourage learners of all generations. We are committed to providing educational opportunities to our nation’s armed forces, our veterans, and their families. We are regionally accredited to award degrees ranging from the associate to the doctorate, and we guide all our students to develop their capacities for critical thinking, moral reflection, and lifelong learning and leadership.

We remain the faithful stewards of the beautiful lakeside University Campus in the Tampa Bay region of Florida, where our founding monks created the first Catholic college in the state in 1889. Serving nearly 15,000 students, we have expanded to downtown Tampa, to other sites in Florida and beyond, and maintain a physical presence in seven states. We provide highly respected online learning programs to students nationally and internationally. More than 82,000 alumni reside in all 50 states, in Washington, DC, in three U.S. territories, and in 76 countries.


January 23, 2017

kp-logoKaiser Permanente, the nation’s largest integrated health care system, is celebrating the grand opening of its Duluth Contact Center in Gwinnett County. Plans to open the national member service contact center, which will bring 800 new jobs to metro Atlanta by 2020, were announced last year at the State Capitol by Governor Nathan Deal and Kaiser Permanente leaders. To date, nearly 300 new employees have been hired.

“Kaiser Permanente strives to deliver the highest level of care and customer service, and this contact center supports our efforts to make it easy for members across the country to connect with us,” said Jim Simpson, interim president of Kaiser Permanente of Georgia. “As a provider of health care and coverage to metro Atlantans for more than 30 years, Kaiser Permanente is invested in this region and its economic vitality. We are proud to be able to create employment opportunities for so many talented customer service professionals.”

Kaiser Permanente also operates national contact centers in California, Colorado and Maryland. Metro Atlanta’s market for call center workers—the seventh largest in the country—was a key reason Kaiser Permanente chose to locate a fourth national contact center in Gwinnett County. The facility serves Kaiser Permanente’s more than 10.6 million members in eight states and the District of Columbia, including approximately 300,000 in Georgia.

“We are excited about Kaiser Permanente’s latest investment in Gwinnett and how that decision reflects on our community’s strengths,” said Gwinnett County Board of Commissioners Chairman Charlotte Nash. “Companies like Kaiser Permanente are able to grow and expand their business with confidence knowing they have access to a skilled workforce, solid infrastructure, and quality of life amenities like those offered here in Gwinnett County.”

Across the country, Kaiser Permanente’s contact centers handle more than 15 million calls and one million emails a year related to insurance coverage and billing. In addition to recruiting more than 800 new employees for the Duluth Contact Center, Kaiser Permanente relocated its Georgia-based member service representatives, appointment schedulers and advice nurses to the location. The site has the capacity to house up to 1,000 workers.

Kaiser Permanente invested $51 million to purchase and renovate the 185,000-square-foot office complex in Duluth to meet requirements for LEED certification as a “green” building. The facility is also designed to be a total health environment that inspires, influences and communicates good health. It features bright, open and collaborative spaces; ergonomic workstations; and stairways that promote walking and active living.

Last year, Kaiser Permanente opened a new IT facility in Midtown Atlanta, which is expected to create 900 new jobs, bringing Kaiser Permanente’s presence in Georgia to more than 5,000 employees and physicians by 2020. The health care organization also operates 26 medical centers across metro Atlanta and in Athens. For more information about employment opportunities with Kaiser Permanente, visit the careers page at

YWCA of Northwest Georgia Changes Name to liveSAFE Resources

January 20, 2017

Cobb Nonprofit Aligns Name, Brand with Ongoing Mission

YWCA of Northwest Georgia announced it has changed its name to liveSAFE Resources. The new name reflects the nonprofit’s mission to provide safety and healing to those impacted by domestic violence, sexual assault and elder abuse.

On Tuesday, January 17, the organization celebrated and revealed its new name, logo and brand to donors, community partners and supporters. While the name “Young Women’s Christian Association of Northwest Georgia” served the organization well in the past, challenges arose because the name did not reflect its evolved mission. There was a lingering perception that the organization offered a gym or community pool, and implied it only served young Christian women, when in fact the organization serves anyone impacted by domestic violence, sexual assault and elder abuse.

In 2015, in order to bridge the gap between the organization’s name and mission, the board of directors made the decision to change the name. Following a successful $7.2 million capital campaign to renovate its main location and emergency shelter, the name change represented the natural last step in solidifying the organization’s mission to the community.

“There are many reasons why we changed our name, but the most important is to make it easier for those who need us to find us,” said Holly Tuchman, CEO/Executive Director of liveSAFE Resources. “If that saves one life, it will have been worth it.”

After a thorough RFP evaluation, 524 Creative of Marietta was selected to lead the process of researching and recommending the new name, as well as developing the new brand. After extensive research and interviews with key stakeholders, 524 Creative presented several name options, from which liveSAFE Resources was chosen.

“The board of directors and staff leadership selected liveSAFE Resources because it best reflects our mission, to help victims and survivors to live safe,” added Tuchman. “It’s flexibility also accommodates the future growth of our services and programs and is more inclusive of everyone we serve, regardless of gender, religion, race, age or sexual orientation.”

As part of the name change, the organization adopted a new logo inspired by an origami peace dove that reflects the transformation of clients through their individual healing process. liveSAFE Resources also launched a new website ( and has introduced new outdoor signage, corporate identity pieces and new collateral. Other than the name/brand change and its disaffiliation from the YWCA, the organization is not changing in any way. The staff, leadership team, board of directors, programs, services and events will remain exactly the same.

“Our community has supported the YWCA of Northwest Georgia for the last 100 years. It is our hope they will embrace and support liveSAFE Resources the same way as we embark on our next 100-year journey with a vision of creating a community free from domestic violence, sexual assault and elder abuse,” said Jim Kellogg, liveSAFE Resources Board President.

For more information on the name change, please visit this page or contact Holly Comer Tuchman, CEO/Executive Director at 770-or

About liveSAFE Resources

Founded in 1917, liveSAFE Resources (formerly the YWCA of Northwest Georgia) is committed to providing safety and healing to those impacted by domestic violence, sexual assault and elder abuse within our community. By providing an emergency shelter, transitional housing, counseling, legal advocacy, a 24-hour crisis line and many other services, we empower those we serve to rebuild their lives. By raising awareness and fostering support, liveSAFE Resources is dedicated to building a community free from domestic violence, sexual assault and elder abuse.

For details on liveSAFE Resources programs and services or how to be part of the solution, please contact 770-427-2902 or visit To reach the 24-hour crisis line, call 770-427-3390.

Life U’s Dr. Mark Kovacs Presents at 2017 MLS Symposium

January 20, 2017

LifeUniversity_Brandmark[4]Dr. Mark Kovacs, the Director of the LIFE Sport Science Institute (LSSI) and Associate Professor in the Department of Sport Health Science at Life University (LIFE) presented on the Latest Technologies To Improve Recovery, Nutrition and Sleep for Elite Level Soccer at the 2017 Major League Soccer (MLS) Medical Symposium during the 2017 MLS Player Combine. The Hospital for Special Surgery (HSS) hosted the 2017 MLS Medical Symposium in Los Angeles alongside the 2016 MLS Player Combine. This is one of the top annual events in the U.S. for individuals who work in elite soccer, and specifically with MLS teams throughout the country.

“This was an outstanding event that brings together the top minds working in professional soccer in the United States,” says Dr. Kovacs. “It was a privilege to present alongside The Chief Medical Officers for U.S. Soccer and the MLS, and to present to the MLS healthcare staffs (chiropractors, athletic trainers, physical therapists, strength coaches and medical doctors) who work with the various MLS teams throughout the country.”

The purpose of the symposium was to provide medical teams with guidance on the identification, prevention and treatment of injuries and illnesses common to the soccer athlete. The team approach was emphasized, using case presentations; injury updates of current recommendations; and methods for return to sport in common areas affecting the soccer population. Emphasis was also placed on the medical care of athletes, with attention to concussion management as well as recovery and nutrition.

Dr. Kovacs presented information based around his work over the past few years in soccer, which involved work with the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) and also work he has done with national teams leading into the 2014 World Cup in Brazil and soccer teams in the English Premier League and La Liga (Spanish League). Some of the information covered is also from Dr. Kovacs’s two unique graduated classes he teaches at Life University titled “Technology in Sport” and “Recovery in Sport” which provides students with the latest information about technologies and recovery research to help improve sports performance and the reduction of overuse injuries.

“The ability to share the information is one aspect of the symposium, but an even greater privilege is to be able to bring back to the LIFE campus the latest information in these areas and build upon the applied research and education we are performing at the LSSI and also add to the curriculum that is being taught to the students that we mentor here in the undergraduate and graduate programs in Sport Health Science,” remarks Dr. Kovacs. “It also provides great contacts for students who may have an interest in working in soccer in different areas of health care, performance and injury prevention.”

For anyone interested in more information on the Sport Health Science Department and the degrees offered at Life University, visit or call 800.543.3202.

About Life University
Founded in Marietta, Georgia in 1974, Life University is a health sciences institution most known for its chiropractic program, the largest single campus chiropractic program in the world. Life University is regionally accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC) to award baccalaureate, master’s, and Doctor of Chiropractic degrees, and also has programmatic accreditation through the Council on Chiropractic Education (CCE), the Accreditation Council for Education in Nutrition and Dietetics (ACEND) and the Commission on Accreditation of Athletic Training Education (CAATE). The mission of Life University is to empower students with the education, skills and values necessary for career success and life fulfillment, based on a vitalistic philosophy.


January 19, 2017

The Cobb Chamber has named Trey Sanders, Regional President of Brasfield & Gorrie, as its 2018 Chairman of the Board.

Sanders succeeds Gary Bottoms, President of The Bottoms Group, and a Principal of TBX Benefit Partners, a subsidiary of The Bottoms Group, who is currently serving as Chairman of the Board. Sanders will start his term as Chairman in January 2018.

“The Cobb Chamber is excited to work under Trey’s leadership. Brasfield & Gorrie is the largest general contractor in the Southeast and has been an engaged member of our Chamber for 30 years. Our region has benefitted from their projects, including SunTrust Park, the College Football Hall of Fame and the Chick-fil-A Fan Experience, the Georgia Aquarium, and WellStar Paulding Hospital,” said David Connell, President and CEO of the Cobb Chamber. “Trey has exhibited his commitment to Cobb’s business community through his leadership roles at the Chamber.”

Sanders has been involved in the Cobb Chamber for 7 years. In that time he has been a Chairman’s Club member and he has served on the Board of Directors Executive Committee and as the Team CEO for the Brasfield & Gorrie Membership Campaign Team since 2015.

As Regional President, Sanders is responsible for the operations of the Healthcare and Senior Living market sectors in Brasfield & Gorrie’s Atlanta office, and the Commercial and Medical market sectors in the company’s Raleigh and Charlotte, North Carolina offices. He leads efforts in client development and service and oversees project operations in these markets. Sanders is also a member of Brasfield & Gorrie’s Corporate Strategic Planning team.

Sanders graduated from Auburn University with a Bachelor of Science in Building Science. He and his family are active members of Mt. Bethel UMC in Marietta, and he has formerly served as an Administrative Council Member at Large. Sanders is married to Amy and together they have three daughters: Cameron, Emily, and Lucy.

About the Cobb Chamber
As one of the most influential business advocacy organizations in Georgia, the Cobb Chamber is dedicated to bringing the community and its leaders together to create jobs and strengthen the economy and quality of life so businesses and the community can achieve more. The Chamber achieves this by creating jobs and driving economic development; strengthening the community and the region; growing member businesses and nurturing leadership; and connecting businesses, government and the community.