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FRIDAY, nov. 14, 2014 • VOL. 17, NO. 34 • FREE

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• A PUBLICATION OF ACE III COMMUNICATIONS •

County must
act soon to save
millions

Son to honor
mother’s memory at
Thanksgiving dinner

Four teams win
cross country state
titles

Local, 10A

Local, 12A

sports, 18A

Health Screening at
Atlanta Hawks game
]by Ashley Oglesby
ashley@dekalbchamp.com
Allergic diseases, which include asthma,
are the fifth most prevalent chronic diseases
in all ages, and the third most common in
children, according to a research by the
American College of Allergy, Asthma and
Immunology (ACAAI).
“Most children diagnosed with the disease usually have allergies as an underlying
trigger,” said Robin Panethere, Atlanta Allergy & Asthma.
She said, “If we can get the allergies under
control, then we can get the asthma under
control.”
Panethere said the disease causes the
highest rates of absenteeism from school and
if not kept under control can keep children
from being active.
On Nov. 8, Atlanta Allergy and Asthma
partnered with Allergy & Asthma Network
along with ACAAI at the Philips Arena to
provide free allergy and asthma screenings
to individuals as part of the ACAAI Annual
Scientific Meeting.
The three groups joined forces to educate
people on controlling their allergies and
asthma to decrease the number of deaths

See Screening on page 15A

DeKalb remembers
its veterans
by Andrew Cauthen
andrew@dekalbchamp.com

“There’s no greater sacrifice than a person who lays
down his life for another.”
That’s what interim
DeKalb County CEO Lee
May said Nov. 5 during the
county’s 13th annual Veterans’ Awards Ceremony and
Exposition, sponsored by the
Veterans Affairs Advisory
Board of DeKalb.
May commended the
“work and the labor and the
sacrifice of many of our men
and women right here in
DeKalb County who decided
to put country before self and
to put forward themselves as
a sacrifice for freedom.”
Commissioner Jeff Rader,
a U. S. Navy veteran, said,
“Certainly the supreme sacri-

See Veterans on page 15A

Veterans were honored during the county’s 13th annual Veterans’ Awards Ceremony.
Photo by Andrew Cauthen

Moments after explosives were detonated, the old Executive Park motel at I-85 and North Druid Hills Road, was a pile of debris. Photos by Andrew Cauthen.

Vacant building reduced to rubble
by Andrew Cauthen
andrew@dekalbchamp.com
DeKalb’s skyline is a little emptier after the
19-story Executive Park Hotel was reduced to
rubble Nov. 8.
Hundreds gathered early that morning for a

championnewspaper

rare opportunity to watch the building implode.
The structure, located at I-85 and North Druid
Hills Road, was owned by Children’s Healthcare
of Atlanta.
Shortly before 7 a.m., onlookers counted down
from 10 to 1 and after a brief silence, several
explosions were heard in the building. A large

championnews

piece of the building shot out the side near the
tenth floor. The building quickly went straight
down to the ground, causing a large dust cloud to
rise into the air.
The crowd cheered and screamed and laughed
and snapped dozens of photos as the building
came down.

championnewspaper

See Rubble on page 15A

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local

Page 2A The Champion Free Press, Friday Nov. 14, 2014

Decatur Police release first quarter data of police-initiated stops
by Carla Parker
carla@dekalbchamp.com
Decatur police stop more nonWhites and non-residents, according
to a new report.
The department released its first
data Nov. 7 since it began tracking the demographics of persons
stopped by the police on Aug. 1. The
first quarterly report showed that
1,041 Blacks and 166 of other races
were stopped from Aug. 1 to Oct. 31,
compared to 928 Whites.
There were 2,149 stops during
that time-period, mostly non-residents, according to the report. The
police stopped 1,858 non-residents,
277 residents and 14 unknowns, according to the report. The city said
the racial make-up of those involved
in police-initiated stops mirrors the
racial make-up of Decatur, DeKalb
County and the city of Atlanta.
“It is still very early, but the police department’s tracking of demographic data of persons stopped by
the police, whether on foot, bicycle
or in a motor vehicle, seems to be
working well,” said Decatur Mayor
Jim Baskett. “The city commission
believes this and all the data collected by the Decatur Police Department

are key to ensuring our city’s police
department remains the responsible
team of dedicated professionals that
Decatur expects and deserves.”
The police department also
tracks citizen complaints, use of

force by officers and police pursuits
of suspects. Decatur officers and the
city’s management team recently
completed a diversity program led
by trainers from the Anti-Defamation League’s A World of Difference

Institute.
“Our detailed focus on data,
analytics and training is part of
the Decatur Police Department’s
commitment to enforcing a higher
standard in law enforcement,” said
Decatur Police Chief Mike Booker.
“In the past two years, we have taken
steps to ensure we are best serving
the needs of everyone in Decatur.
This includes buying new body cameras for officers to supplement the
dashboard cameras already in use
on police vehicles and creating the
position of community information
and education officer, currently held
by Sgt. Jennifer Ross, to facilitate
the flow of information to the community and coordinate free crime
prevention classes, including [a] selfdefense course for women.”
In October, the Decatur City
Commission approved a timeline
and budget for Phase I of a process
to create a community action plan
for a “Compassionate Decatur.” The
city said it intends to be “comprehensive, intentional and take a holistic approach to developing a community action plan that appreciates
diversity and supports a community
of inclusion and compassion based
on justice and equity.”

local

The Champion Free Press, Friday Nov. 14, 2014Page 3A

Doraville declines outsourcing occupation taxes
by Ashley Oglesby
Ashley@dekalbchamp.com
Almost two dozen
Doraville businesses are still
waiting for their business
license applications to be
processed from almost a year
ago.
Financial Director Lisa
Ferguson said her staff is
“overwhelmed.”
Ferguson maintains the
city human resources department, benefits, retirement,
accounting and budgeting
and said her staff is still
working on applications received from last December.
In December of this year,
the volume of applications is
expected to increase with the
new annexations.
City Manager Shawn
Gillen said in Nov. 10 special
called meeting, “The newly
annexed businesses will present a greater workload than a
simple new business application because each application
needs to be reviewed for zoning and to ensure that they
have been in compliance
with DeKalb’s regulations. If
they have a current DeKalb
County Occupational Tax
certificate, they will be treated as renewals by our staff. If
they are not in compliance,
or not up to date with their
taxes, they will be treated as
new applications.”
In an August meeting
with council, Ferguson submitted a request for proposal
(RFP) to outsource the processing of the occupational
tax applications and received
two responses. Clark Patterson Lee (CPL), a firm
with an existing contract to
provide a sweeps program,
conduct building inspections
and code enforcement for the

city, declined the proposal.
Revenue Discovery Systems
(RDS), a tax administration
and auditing company, sub-

October 2014 then there is
something wrong with the
application to begin with,
not the fact that we haven’t

The money can be found, the
question is, what is the council willing to forego, our parks
and walkability master  plan,
installation of new sidewalks,
park renovations, etc.
-Robert Patrick
mitted a cost proposal valid
through Oct. 27.
At a city council meeting
on Oct. 20, Gillen proposed
again to outsource the occupational contract and was
denied by a lack of votes.
Council member Pam
Fleming said her concern
was having this done by people in another state.
“We need to keep our
monies in our hands and not
rely on anyone else to collect
them for us,” Fleming said.
She said in 2008 and
2009 the city had fewer employees in the clerks’ offices
than now and “were getting
everything done.”
Fleming said, “I am not
in favor of hiring any more
people. I am not in favor of
outsourcing a revenue source
as big as our occupational
taxes and if we are still trying to find out about 2013
applications in later part of

collected money.”
Fleming recommended
utilizing the sweeps program

and assigning CPL to go
door-to-door to each business in Doraville to assist
with collecting funds and
building data.
The Doraville City clerk’s
office processes an estimate
of 1,500 occupational tax applications each year.
Robert Patrick, a
Doraville council member,
said he understands the concerns about outsourcing but
supported the option.
“The Doraville residents
decided through a referendum that a professional city
manager should be responsible for determining the
staffing needs of individual
departments and the city as
a whole. If the council could
postpone hiring additional
staff until at least the next
fiscal year, or the year after,
we would have a better handle on the revenue streams
and services due to annexations,” Patrick said.

He added, “For the city
to stay within current budget, and maintain our current
fiscal commitments to long
term infrastructure improvements and provide a higher
caliber of services to the
residents and businesses,
yes, outsourcing is a critical
component.”
RDS proposed to charge
$11 per application averaging less than $1,500 per
year. Assuming the city receives an increase of 3,000
transactions in December
RDS would charge the city
$33,000.
The total cost estimated
to keep the contract in-house
is $70,700, according to Ferguson.
Patrick said, “The money
can be found, the question is,
what is the council willing to
forego? Our parks and walkability master plan, installation of new sidewalks, park
renovations, etc?”

Avondale creates permitting concierge coordinator position
Avondale Estates announced Nov. 3
the hiring of Phil Howland for the newly
created permitting concierge coordinator
position.
Howland was previously Lithonia’s
city administrator, where he helped to
reorganize and improve city finances. He
handled payroll and human resources
duties and set up new bookkeeping software, among other duties.
“Phil’s duties as permitting concierge
coordinator play to his strengths, and he
plans to help the city of Avondale Estates
take its customer service and permitting
efficiency to the next level,” the city said
in a released statement.
Howland will be responsible for as-

sisting permit applicants, processing
building permit applications, scheduling
inspection requests, and routing plans
for zoning and plan review for commercial and residential projects to appropriate city staff, according to the city.
Howland has 25 years experience as
a building contractor and spent about
a decade running his own business. He
specializes in working on historically significant homes.
Howland has lived in DeKalb County
for more than 40 years and graduated
from Decatur High School. He and his
wife, Candice, live in Pine Lake, and he
has two sons.

opinion

The Champion Free Press, Friday Nov. 14, 2014Page 4A

Veterans Day in Georgia
Many families in Georgia have a
personal connection to the U.S. military. Many of our parents, children,
spouses or relatives have served our
country in the Armed Forces. When
Veterans Day comes around, it’s not
an abstract concept for me. Both
professionally as a state legislator
and personally as a military spouse,
I strive to honor those in our families who have served.
My husband Major David
Haigler Jr. is currently serving on
active duty and 25 years of combined reserve/national guard/active
service. Those were not always easy
years for either of us as they aren’t
for most military families. I’m proud
of my husband, as I know he was
proud of his service to his country,
but on Veterans Day I find myself
reflecting on the nature of service
and sacrifice and wondering whether we have drifted away from our
commitment to those who serve.
Sadly, we need look no further
than the process surrounding Pentagon spending. For military families the obvious priority in every
budget decision should be to equip
our troops with the best equipment
whether that applies to day-to-day

necessities or complex weapons.
And when they return, we should
support every necessary measure
to reintegrate them into civilian life
and meet their needs, especially if
they have been injured physically or
psychologically.
Not everyone sees it that way. For
some special interests, the Pentagon
budget is principally a cash cow,
an opportunity to turn a big profit
without meaningful scrutiny. While
their advertisements invoke the sacrifices that our families make, their
actions tell a different tale.
In this last election cycle–in
which the levels of campaign spending appalled most Americans regardless of their party–the defense
industry shattered records for political giving. Pentagon contractors
spent more on this election than any
before. Unfortunately, little of that
spending was about looking after
our men and women in uniform.
It’s about looking out for the bottom
line.
The past decade has been enormously profitable for companies
with Pentagon contracts, but it
hasn’t been nearly as impressive
when it comes to meeting the needs

of our troops. In one example, the
army was pitched on a “$5 billion
intelligence fusion network” meant
to provide immediate intelligence
to soldiers in the field, but the LA
Times quotes an Army testing report
assessing the program as “not operationally effective, not operationally
suitable and not survivable.” It was
profitable though.
In another example, Congress
has committed to spend a staggering
$1.5 trillion on the F-35, the most
expensive weapon in history. That
might be OK if it meant that our pilots were safer than ever before, but
the plane has failed repeated tests
and one recently burst into flames
on the runway. In order to keep the
funding flowing to the F-35 which
is a cool $163 billion over budget,
Congress has proposed to take money from the funds meant to meet the
needs of troops deployed overseas.
Coincidentally, perhaps, the manufacturer of the F-35 is the single biggest campaign contributor among
arms makers.
Rep. Duncan Hunter (R-Calif.),
who sits on the House Armed
Services Committee, has rightly
lamented that Congress typically

awards contracts to those “who
know government and the government acquisition process.”
And when our family members
do come home, far too often they
languish in underfunded and understaffed Veterans Affairs hospitals.
On this Veterans Day the sad truth
is that our vets will make up a disproportionate share of America’s
homeless population, rural poor and
unemployed.
We need real Pentagon spending reform and we need it now. We
need to honor our family members
who served, not just with a flyover
or priority boarding on their next
airline flight, but by taking real steps
to meet the needs of our troops,
whether serving or retired.
Dee Dawkins-Haigler is a state
representative in GA, representing
District 91 and is the daughter of
a disabled army nurse veteran, Lt.
Peggy Butler. Dawkins-Haigler is
married with four children and two
grandchildren and is a member of the
Women Legislators’ Lobby (WiLL), a
program of Women’s Action for New
Directions.

An open letter to DeKalb County

DeKalb judge to resign
Recent headlines, articles, and
commentary in the media require
my direct response to the DeKalb
County citizens who have entrusted
me with the office and duties of
Superior Court Judge.
First, I have, in each and every
case before me, made findings of
fact based on the evidence as I heard
it. I have then applied the law to
those facts in making my decisions.
I have never considered: the position
any individual held, who the
lawyers were, the socio-economic
status, political agendas, or any
inappropriate matter. I have made
decisions based on the law, period.
That is what my oath of office
requires and justice demands.
Second, it is alleged that I had
an improper, secret communication
with the attorneys for two
defendants. That is not so. Factually,
I received the order from the Court
of Appeals on Thursday, Oct. 24.
After reading that directive and
researching the law, I concluded
that I would have to give those
two defendants a new trial (a “do
over”) in the interests of justice.

I removed myself as the judge of
any retrial, since I had made factual
determinations as to the credibility
of certain testimony. That decision
was made Friday, Oct. 25, and a
rough draft of the order was created;
however, I wanted to carefully
consider the ramifications of my
findings and the possibility of a
retrial, so I held my decision over
that weekend for further reflection
and prayer.
Monday morning, Oct. 28,
after making all of the substantive
decisions in the case, I confirmed
that the defendants were no longer
in the DeKalb County Jail, and
that they were located somewhere
in the state prison system. I called
their attorneys to verify the exact
locations of each defendant. It was
important that the orders go directly
to those prisons, particularly given
the health concerns as to defendant
[Pat] Reid that had been raised
during trial and the fact that prison
transports occur only on Tuesdays
and Thursdays. There was no need
to involve the DA’s Office in that
procedural communication, just as

there had been no need to involve
the attorneys for [Tony] Pope and
Reid months earlier when the district
attorneys and defendant [Crawford]
Lewis’ attorneys met with me in my
office with the proposed plea deal.
Third, it has been suggested
that the Judicial Qualifications
Commission (JQC) is investigating
the procedural actions in this case.
That is true, as I was first advised
by them at a conference on Sept.
8, 2014 [Docket #2015-1]. To my
knowledge, prior to last week, no
allegations of misconduct had been
filed by anyone. If I have made any
error of law or fact in this or any
other case, those allegations are a
matter for the appellate courts of this
state to review once the complete
transcripts and briefs have been
transmitted.
The DA has filed a written,
supposedly confidential, complaint
with the JQC, as has been reported
in the media. The confidentiality of
that process has been breached by
others. I stand by my decisions and I
will accept any lawful correction of
any purported errors.

Lastly, it has been headlined
that these allegations could end
my career of service as a Superior
Court judge. As my family, friends,
colleagues, and courthouse family
had known for months before this
trial, I plan to leave office before
my term ends, not due to any
pressure from anyone, but because
I am engaged to be married in
early spring 2015. I am happily
exchanging the very public life of a
judge for a very private life with my
husband and I am looking forward to
this next exciting chapter of my life.
It has been an honor serving DeKalb
County to the best of my ability.
I will give Gov. [Nathan] Deal
my letter of resignation after closing
out professional obligations later
this year as planned. I want to ensure
that Gov. Deal has several months to
choose the best possible replacement
to serve.
The people of DeKalb County
deserve no less.
DeKalb County Judge Cynthia
J. Becker Superior Court

REDUCE • REUSE • RECYCLE • REDUCE • REUSE • RECYCLE

opinion

The Champion Free Press, Friday, Nov. 14, 2014Page 5A

One Man’s Opinion

Perhaps a slice of humble pie?
“Those who have knowledge, don’t predict. Those
who predict, don’t have
knowledge.”–Lao Tzu, 6th
century B.C., Chinese philosopher and poet.
As a political columnist
and analyst, I am most often asked, typically well in
advance of an election, who
is going to win. Within literally hours of the completion
of the 2014 General Election unofficial result tallies
I was asked, “Who will be
our next president?”
I understand the fascination with the horse race,
though it is really only one
small fraction of the much
larger job of governing, but
I often wish that the mass
media, as well as voting
public, had a greater appetite for the larger policy
discussions and debate that
often later drive those same
election results.
Our most recent election
results are viewed by some
as a mandate and landslide
for the GOP. That is not
the way I see things. I view
these results, as well as the
control shift in the Senate
as a major “no” vote against
President Barack Obama,
and a repudiation of his political agenda of the past six
years.

Bill Crane
bill.csicrane@gmail.com

Columnist

Then U.S. Sen. Obama
was elected in 2008 with a
huge mandate and crushing win over U.S. Sen.
John McCain. That had
been preceded in 2006 by
a brutal midterm election
for President George Bush,
costing his party control of
Capitol Hill. For two years,
President Obama ruled
with strong majorities in
both chambers of Congress,
and yet still only narrowly
passed his most significant
landmark and potential
legacy legislation, the Affordable Care Act (ACA,
aka Obamacare), by the narrowest of margins.
The birth of the Tea Party
enhanced by pushback on
the ACA by voters in the
2010 midterms led to a

GOP take back of the U.S.
House, and a more frustrating period for the Obama
presidency, as the White
House shifted from ruling
by a Democratic-controlled
Washington, D.C., to governing largely by executive
order and administrative
fiat.
It is this overreaching
and in some cases significant attempt to shift
or drift to the left, which
I believe a healthy majority of American voters just
rejected. They were not and
are not now swinging hard
to the right, ready to again
reject same-sex marriage,
medicinal cannibis or even
some common sense immigration policy reform, as
long as that includes securing our southern and northern borders.
This president invited
GOP congressional leaders
to the White House only
days after making it clear
that he is open to “ideas
from other parties” and
discussion, while also very
clear that he would continue
to go it alone and might
even ram down major immigration changes during
this lame duck session of
Congress.
This is a far cry from

President Ronald Reagan’s
visit to Capitol Hill not long
after his first election, to
compare agendas with fellow Irishman and legendary
House Speaker Tip O’Neill,
a staunch Democrat. Reagan
and O’Neil found common
ground on tax reform and
the ill-fated Immigration
Reform Act of 1986 among
other items. 
When the 1998 Congressional midterms gave President Bill Clinton a majority GOP Congress, he also
made this trek, reaching out
to then House Speaker Newt
Gingrich. Though Clinton
would be impeached by that
same GOP Congress less
than six months later, they
were still able to deliver the
first balanced budgets since
the Kennedy White House
and the landmark reform of
Welfare into Workfare, or its
actual name, Temporary Assistance for Needy Families
(TANF), which to date costs
less per year and provides
temporary safety net assistance and job training to
a larger population of those
in need. This difference in
meeting location and style is
much more than symbolic.
Obama and his advisers
still somehow believe that
a majority of voters support

his policies and direction for
our nation. Given a loss of
70 seats in the U.S. House
since the 2008 election and
the most recent reversal of
a 52-48 majority in the Senate to what looks like 54-46
after runoffs yet to occur,
as well as the governors’
offices in Illinois, Massachusetts and Maryland
returning to GOP hands in
January...you might think
this White House would be
ready for a slice of holiday
humble pie. Think again. As
the starting gun has already
been fired for the 2016 presidential election, and as you
ask those whose opinion
you respect, “Who is gonna
win?” perhaps the better
question might be, “Who is
going to listen?”
Bill Crane also serves
as a political analyst and
commentator for Channel
2’s Action News, WSB-AM
News/Talk 750 and now
95.5 FM, as well as a columnist for The Champion,
Champion Free Press and
Georgia Trend. Crane is a
DeKalb native and business
owner, living in Scottdale.
You can reach him or comment on a column at bill.
csicrane@gmail.com. 

F ree P ress

Let Us Know What You Think!

THE CHAMPION FREE PRESS encourages opinions from its readers.
Please write to us and express your views. Letters should be brief, typewritten and contain the writer’s name, address and telephone number
for verification. All letters will be considered for publication.
Send Letters To Editor, The Champion Free Press, P. O. Box 1347, Decatur, GA 300311347; Send email to Andrew@dekalbchamp.com • FAX To: (404) 370-3903 Phone:
(404) 373-7779 . Deadline for news releases and advertising: Thursday, one week prior
to publication date.
EDITOR’S NOTE: The opinions written by columnists and contributing editors do not
necessarily reflect the opinions of the editor or publishers. The Publisher reserves the
right to reject or cancel any advertisement at any time. The Publisher is not responsible
for unsolicited manuscripts.

Publisher: John Hewitt
Chief Financial Officer: Dr. Earl D. Glenn
Managing Editor: Andrew Cauthen
Production Manager: Kemesha Hunt
Photographer: Travis Hudgons
Staff Reporters: Carla Parker, Ashley Oglesby
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The Champion Free Press is published each Friday by ACE III
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30030 • Phone (404) 373-7779.

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Statement from the publisher
We sincerely appreciate the discussion surrounding this and
any issue of interest to DeKalb County. The Champion was
founded in 1991 expressly to provide a forum for discourse
for all community residents on all sides of an issue. We have
no desire to make the news only to report news and opinions
to effect a more educated citizenry that will ultimately move
our community forward. We are happy to present ideas for
discussion; however, we make every effort to avoid printing
information submitted to us that is known to be false and/or
assumptions penned as fact.

local

Page 6A The Champion Free Press, Friday Nov. 14, 2014

Tamara Rose
A Stone Mountain High School Senior
has been named the top Atlanta area volunteer for the YMCA.
Tamara Rose, a Stone Mountain resident,
received the YMCA of Metro Atlanta’s 2014
Volunteer of the Year award for her service at
Wade Walker Park Family YMCA. She was
honored at the annual volunteer recognition
dinner Nov. 10.
Rose has given more than 300 volunteer
hours and helps in every department at the
YMCA. She assists with scoring during youth
basketball, soccer, baseball and swimming
events. Rose also volunteers in the play center and at the front desk. She gives tours and
greets members regularly.
The YMCA is an association of men,
women and children joined together by a
shared commitment to nurturing the potential of children, promoting healthy living and

fostering a sense of social responsibility.
“Volunteering at the Y is comforting,”
Rose said. “I learned to open up and speak
my mind. I meet amazing people who have
helped me and given me uplifting advice. The
YMCA feels like home because everybody
cares for and respects each other.”
Rose has been volunteering at the YMCA
since 2013.
“When Tamara first came to the Y, she
was very quiet, extremely shy and unsure of
herself,” said Winston Myers, executive director of Wade Walker Park YMCA.
“She says she would not be the young
person she is today without the Y. She has
made new friends, is vocal about her feelings,
has found a new sense of self confidence, and
demonstrates her leadership skills daily,” Myers said.

If you would like to nominate someone to be considered as a future Champion of the Week,
please contact Andrew Cauthen at andrew@dekalbchamp.com or at (404) 373-7779, ext. 117.
Tamara Rose

Plaintiff appeals
Superior Court ruling
by Ashley Oglesby
ashley@dekalbchamp.com
Student journalist David
Schick filed a lawsuit on June
10, 2013, seeking an injunction
directing the Board of Regents
of the University System of
Georgia to comply with the
Georgia Open Records Act and
produce documents concerning
a $25 million budget shortfall
that occurred at Georgia Perimeter College in 2012.
The plaintiff in the lawsuit
against the Board has appealed
the Sept. 24, 2014, decision of
Fulton Superior Court Judge
Robert McBurney for failing
to award attorney’s fees despite
fining the board $1,000 for
what the judge termed “technical violations” of the law.
Almost two months after
the lawsuit was filed, the Board
of Regents handed over an additional 713 pages to Schick,
claiming the documents were
inadvertently misplaced, despite several attempts by Schick
to ensure the board had complied with the law and given
him all the documents he had
asked for.
The board withheld additional documents from Schick
claiming those materials were
exempt from disclosure because
they were the subject of “pending” investigations; however,
McBurney found that some of
these documents should have

been released to Schick because
these investigations had actually been closed as of Aug. 5,
2013.
After a three-day trial in
April 2014, McBurney issued
his decision Sept. 24, 2014,
finding that Schick had proved
the board was guilty of violating the Open Records Act and
imposed a $1,000 civil penalty.
Because McBurney termed
these “technical violations” and
concluded that the regents had
sufficient justification for its
mistakes, he declined to award
attorney’s fees to Schick’s Atlanta lawyer, Daniel Levitas,
of Clements & Sweet, LLP. The
appeal was filed in Fulton Superior Court on Oct. 23, 2014,
seeking review by the Georgia
Court of Appeals.
Schick and his attorney said
that McBurney erred in allowing the regents to withhold certain documents under the socalled “pending investigation”
exemption of the Open Records
Act, O.C.G.A. 50-18-72 (a)(4).
“The trial court ruling sets
a dangerous precedent because
the (a)(4) exemption applies
only to pending investigations
involving the records of ‘law
enforcement, prosecutorial, and
regulatory agencies,’ and cannot
possibly apply to the Board of
Regents, which is an institution
of higher education, not a law
enforcement agency,” Levitas
said.

Residents say Echo Lake, which is currently being dredged, would be affected by a proposed
development. Photos by Andrew Cauthen

Residents fight for
‘the last 21 acres’
by Andrew Cauthen
andrew@dekalbchamp.com
They call it the “last 21 acres.”
Residents from nine North
DeKalb communities have formed
the Briarlake Community Forest
Alliance, a two-month-old nonprofit organized to protect a 21acre tract between I-285 and I-85.
A developer, Tpa-Arrowhead
LLC, is asking DeKalb County to
rezone the property from R-100
(single-family residential) to RNCD (residential-neighborhood

See Acres on page 9A

This 21-acre virgin forest may soon be the site of more than
40 homes.

community

The Champion Free Press, Friday Nov. 14, 2014Page 7A

AroundDeKalb

Decatur

A panoramic view of the Agnes Scott campus, circa 1904.
Photograph courtesy of Agnes Scott College.

Agnes Scott College to be
subject of lunch and learn
DeKalb History Center’s November Lunch and
Learn will highlight the 125th anniversary of Agnes
Scott College.
Founded in 1889 by a group of men from Decatur Presbyterian, the college was originally named
Decatur Female Seminary. A year later, George
Washington Scott provided land and funding to
construct and furnish a building, and gave the
school his mother’s name. Over the next 15 years,
the school gradually developed from an elementary
school, to a high school, to a college.   
Agnes Scott alumnae have been leaders in many
professions all over the US and around the world,
and especially in Decatur. Decatur and Agnes Scott
share a long and close relationship. Some of the
highlights of this relationship will be reviewed in
this history of the school, its alumnae, and its place
in Decatur, as the college celebrates 125 years of
high quality education for young women.
The discussion will be led by Marianne Bradley, library administrative coordinator and archives
manager at Agnes Scott College.
This is a free event and guests are encouraged
to bring a lunch. The lunch and learn will be held
Nov. 18, noon – 1 p.m. in the second floor Superior Court room at Historic DeKalb Courthouse,
101 E. Court Square in Decatur.

Thanksgiving. This year’s Thanksgiving Market
will be held on Saturday, Nov. 22, from 11 a.m. to
1 p.m.
The sanctuary in-the-round is converted into
a circular marketplace, with tables overflowing
with traditional canned and boxed Thanksgiving
food items, as well as fruits, vegetables, and certificates for supermarket turkeys.
Invited are those in the neighborhood who
don’t have the means to purchase such items for
their Thanksgiving meal at home. Approximately
100 guests are welcomed each year to “shop” for
family members. The guests also have the chance
to fellowship with each other and with St. John’s
members.
The majority of food donations and financial
support for the Market comes from the congregation. To participate as a donor, volunteer, or
guest, contact Jonathon Huber at jonathondhuber@gmail.com.
St. John’s Lutheran Church is located at the
intersection of Ponce de Leon Avenue and Oakdale Road in the heart of the Druid Hills community of Atlanta, near Emory University. 

Lithonia

Lithonia center to host event for
homeless veterans
Disabled American Veterans (DAV) Chapter 91 will host a Celebrity Holiday Meal/Stand
Down Nov. 16, from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. at the Lou
Walker Senior Center. The event will include
radio station personalities, several veteran service organizations and local businesses to honor
homeless veterans. The veterans will receive a
hearty holiday meal, clothing, medical screenings,
flu shots, barber services, massages, information
and assistance with employment and housing.
They also will receive counseling services and assistance with benefits. Lou Walker Senior Center
is located at 2538 Panola Road in Lithonia. If you
have any questions or plan to attend, contact Val
Green at (678) 665-6504.

Stone
Mountain

Woman’s Club to host Christmas
Home Tour
St. John’s Thanksgiving
Market shares God’s grace and
abundance
For the past five years, members of St. John’s
Lutheran Church have created a day of festive
welcome and abundance on the Saturday before

Homes for the Holidays, the annual Christmas Home Tour of the GFWC Stone Mountain
Woman’s Club, will be held Dec. 13 from 10 a.m.
to 4 p.m. Tickets for the event includes lunch
from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the Stone Mountain
First United Methodist Church Family Life Center, located at 5312 West Mountain St. The Methodist Church Sanctuary also will be open the day
of the tour for anyone who wishes to visit. Tickets
are $25 and can be purchased from any member

of the Stone Mountain Woman’s Club or at ART
Station or the Old Post Office Emporium in Stone
Mountain. The day of the tour tickets will also
be available in the Church’s Family Life Center
or any home on the tour. For more information,
contact Elizabeth Wells at dandewells@bellsouth.
net, (770) 822-9947 or (404) 630-9925.

Village to host Christmas parade
Stone Mountain Village will hold its annual
Christmas parade and fireworks event Nov. 28
from 4‒8 p.m. The event will include children activities, marshmallow roasting, hot chocolate and
fireworks. All restaurants, shops and art galleries
will be open for shopping. For more information,
visit City of Stone Mountain Downtown Development Authority’s Facebook page.

DeKalb

Parks department holding food
drive
The DeKalb Department of Recreation, Parks
and Cultural Affairs will be accepting donations
of nonperishable food items for its annual canned
food drive until Nov. 21. DeKalb residents can
help fight hunger in their local community by
dropping off nonperishable items at recreational
facilities during normal operating hours. Once
all items are gathered, they will be distributed to
people in need. To donate, items can be dropped
off at any of the locations listed below:
• Main Office/Maloof Bldg., 1300 Commerce
Drive in Decatur
• Browns Mill Recreation Center, 5101 Browns
Mill Road in Lithonia
• Exchange Recreation Center, 2771 Columbia
Drive in Decatur
• Gresham Recreation Center, 3113 Gresham
Road in Atlanta
• Hamilton Recreation Center, 3263 Chapel Street
in Scottdale
• Lucious Sanders Recreation Center, 2484 Bruce
Street in Lithonia
• Mason Mill Recreation Center, 1340-B McConnell Drive in Decatur
• Midway Recreation Center, 3181 Midway Road
in Decatur
• N.H. Scott Recreation Center, 2230 Tilson Road
in Decatur
• Porter Sanford III Performing Arts and Community Center, 3181 Rainbow Drive in Decatur
• Redan Recreation Center, 1839 Phillips Road in
Lithonia
• Tobie Grant Recreation Center, 644 Parkdale
Drive in Scottdale
• Tucker Recreation Center, 4898 LaVista Road in
Tucker
The main office will be open from 8:30 a.m.
to 5 p.m., and the recreation centers and the Porter Sanford III Performing Arts and Community
Center will be open from 1-5 p.m.

local

Page 8A The Champion Free Press, Friday Nov. 14, 2014

Brookhaven City Councilman Bates Mattison (right) signs the “Not
Buying It” pledge against child sex trafficking, as Georgia Attorney
General Sam Olens (back, right) and Brookhaven Mayor J. Max
Davis looks on.

Brookhaven signs pledge
to stop child sex trafficking
by Carla Parker
carla@dekalbchamp.com
Brookhaven and Pink Pony agreed on a six-year “exit transition agreement” in which Pink Pony pays a
$225,000 annual fee to the city.

Brookhaven, Pink Pony
reach agreement
by Carla Parker
carla@dekalbchamp.com
Pink Pony will continue
to operate in Brookhaven,
but at a cost.
The Brookhaven City
Council voted 3-1 to approve an “Exit Transition
Agreement” with the adult
entertainment club Nov. 4.
Councilwoman Rebecca
Chase Williams was the
lone vote against the agreement.
“There are many
complexities the city of
Brookhaven inherited with
the Pink Pony, which has
been operating for more
than 20 years,” the city said
in a released statement. “We
look forward to continuing
and enhancing our focus on
Brookhaven’s key priorities.”
The six-year agreement
forces Pink Pony to pay a
$225,000 annual fee to the
city and its police department to be used to fund the
cost of public safety, including salary and benefits, law
enforcement uniforms and
vehicles, special training and
enforcement.
The club will have to
pay the city’s legal fees of
$283,000, which were used
by the city in defense of its
sexually oriented business
ordinance. The agreement
guarantees that the club will
operate in a “defined and
limited time period” as it
transitions into full compliance with the city’s ordinance.
With the agreement,

the club will improve and
protect the adjacent north
fork of Peachtree Creek by
addressing stormwater and
buffering issues as well as
deeding improved green
space to the city. The club
agreed to deposit $25,000 to
the city toward the cost of
the improvements and will
pay a total of $75,000 toward
the project.
Attorney Aubrey Villines, who represents the
Pink Pony, said he thinks
the agreement i s fair.
“Like any compromises
there are things that we like
and things that we don’t
like,” he said. “But I think it
was fair, and I think we’re all
glad to have this behind us
and we can move on and be
a good neighbor.”
The agreement comes
after the Georgia Supreme
Court ruled in favor of
Brookhaven Oct. 6 and
upheld a DeKalb County
court’s dismissal of Pink
Pony’s lawsuit against
Brookhaven. Pink Pony sued
Brookhaven because of a
new city ordinance, which
prohibits nudity and forces
stricter alcohol pouring and
sales times in the city.
The city council voted
3-1 at its Oct. 28 meeting to
allow a mutual non-disclosure agreement between the
city and the Buford Highway
strip club. The agreement
allowed the city to negotiate with the Pink Pony in
private.
Williams voted against
the agreement in the Oct.

28 meeting, stating the city
would be taking a “bribe”
from the strip club. Williams
said at the Nov. 4 meeting that she still thinks the
agreement is a bad deal for
the city.
“Yes, I consider it a payoff to just look the other way
while [Pink Pony] violates
our law,” Williams said. “I’m
personally skeptical that the
Pink Pony will come into
compliance after six years,
but I really hope they will be
good to their word.”
Williams added that she
stayed out of the negotiation
meetings with Pink Pony
on the deal, but made some
suggestions.
“The Pink Pony agrees
that before the end of the
six-year term that if it is not
in compliance and is closing,
that it will provide some job
placement services to its employees,” she said. “I wanted
to at least look out for something for the employees because I think they are being
put in a bad situation too.
The staff is also going to be
trained annually on the subject of sex trafficking.”
Despite the previous
legal battle, Villines said the
relation between the club
and city is good.
“I think the relationship
was always good between
the club and Brookhaven,”
he said. “We just think that
the council has passed an
ordinance that we could not
live with.”

Brookhaven became the first city in Georgia to join
Georgia Task Force on the Commercial Sexual Exploitation of Children.
The program, developed by the Governor’s Office for Children and Families Statewide Commercial
Sexual Exploitation of Children Task Force, is designed
to educate Georgia about the dangers of child sex trafficking. The task force includes representatives from
the Attorney General’s office, GBI and Street Grace, a
nonprofit that works to stop domestic minor sex trafficking. The task force works with law enforcement to
identify those who buy and sell children.
Georgia Attorney General Sam Olens said it is
“incomprehensible” that child sex trafficking is a large
problem in Georgia.
“It’s really important to provide the education, the
training for law enforcement, as well as the overall
community,” Olens said. “We hope other cities will sign
on, train their employees. The more folks are trained,
the more folks will look for the problem, the more arrests we can make and get this out of our state.”
As part of the task force, Brookhaven city staff,
police officers and chamber of commerce officials will
be trained how to recognize the signs of child sex trafficking. Brookhaven officials publicly signed the “Not
Buying It” pledge against child sex trafficking at a Nov.
10 press conference.
Brookhaven Police Chief Gary Yandura said
Brookhaven has already three cases of child exploitation.
“One of the main issues that we deal with every day
is people don’t believe this is going on,” Yandura said.
“That’s what we have to change–the mindset of everyone throughout the whole state.”
Brookhaven Mayor J. Max Davis said when one
gets married and have children, issues like child sex
trafficking become a “hyper-focus”.
“It can become something you’re almost obsessed
about because you fear, constantly, that your child is
going to be kidnapped or harmed by someone else,”
Davis said. “I’m glad we are the first city to sign this
pledge, but I don’t take comfort in that because it is surprising thing that we have sex trafficking in Brookhaven, in the metro area, the city of Atlanta and all over
the state and country. We have to be vigilant. We’re
very resolute and firm in our belief that this will not be
tolerated.”

local

The Champion Free Press, Friday Nov. 14, 2014Page 9A

Lithonia to launch recycling
center and farmers’ market
by Carla Parker
carla@dekalbchamp.com
Lithonia residents soon can buy food
from local farmers while recycling.
The city will launch a new recycling
center and farmers’ market Nov. 15 at 6920
Main St. from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. to celebrate
America Recycles Day–a nationally recognized day dedicated to promoting and celebrating recycling in the United States.
The launch of the center will be a first of
its kind in Georgia. Lithonia Mayor Deborah Jackson said the recycling project is a
“very exciting” development for Lithonia
residents.
“We welcome the opportunity to create a
more environmentally friendly community,”
Jackson said. The added component of the
farmers’ market will provide more healthy
food choices for the surrounding area.
“The city of Lithonia is working to establish itself as a community that promotes
health, wellness and culture,” Jackson added.
“This is just the beginning.”
According to the city, the recycling
center and farmers’ market will provide an
opportunity to assist in the city’s sustainability initiative and connect residents and
visitors with local farmers, which would
bring foot traffic into the city. Residents and
visitors can shop for fresh fruits, vegetables
and crafts from local farmers and specialty
vendors.
Live music and food trucks from the

Atlanta Street Food Coalition will also
be featured. Food trucks will include The
Breakfast Jeanie, Twelve Sixty One, Toasted
Cheese Truck, Burger Box, Buen Provecho
LLC, Mini Cheesecakes Truck, Island
Chef Mobile Café, The Mobile Marlay, and
Healthful Essence.
There also will be containers set up for
residents to sort and recycle paper, glass,
cardboard, metals (aluminum and bi‐metal
cans) and plastics. Residents can also join
the “Plege2Recycle” campaign by dropping off gently used clothes, shoes and toys.
Event sponsors Integrated Waste Systems
(IWS), American Textiles Recycling Services, and Tri‐Cities Funeral Home will provide onsite recycling services.
“IWS is proud to be a part of this initiative, and we find this opportunity to partner
with the city of Lithonia to be in line with
our IWS company vision,” said Sam Miller
of IWS. “We are excited to find new innovative partnerships with citizens, companies
and municipalities to recover, repurpose,
and reuse recyclable materials”
“As a concerned parent, business owner
and civil servant, I felt that the recycling
center is an opportunity to increase the civic
engagement of the residents, and the diversion while keeping the city of Lithonia beautiful,” Lithonia Councilwoman Shameka
Reynolds said.
For more information, call (770) 4828136 or visit the Lithonia recycling and
farmers’ market Facebook page.

Lakeside, Briarcliff groups
seek city name suggestions
by Carla Parker
carla@dekalbchamp.com
The Lakeside and Briarcliff cityhood groups are
thinking of a new city name
and asking the public for
help.
A survey was posted on
Lakeside’s website with the
list of potential city names
including LaVista, Briarton,
LaVista Hills, Briarlake and
Briar Vista. Susan Meyers,
spokesperson for Lakeside
Yes, said the two cityhood
groups have met over the
past six months and have
now reached a tentative map
agreement.
“But more important,
as they move forward to
the legislature in January
they are seeking to rebrand
their efforts with a new city
name,” Meyers said. “They

have launched a survey asking citizens for their input
on what the new city should
be called.”
To help solve the boundary issues between Briarcliff,
Lakeside and Tucker, State
Representatives Mike Jacobs
(R-Brookhaven) and Tom
Taylor (R-Dunwoody) met
with cityhood proponents in
August to discuss directions
issued by House Governmental Affairs Committee
Chairwoman Amy Carter
(R-Valdosta) for the cityhood boundary line proposals.
The House Governmental
Affairs Committee oversees
legislation in the Georgia
House of Representatives involving the creation of new
cities. The maps of the three
proposed cities had overlapping areas, including the

Northlake Mall area. Lakeside’s proposed map also
included part of Tucker’s
30084 ZIP code.
Each of the three cityhood proponent groups was
instructed to identify one
authorized signatory for a
compromise boundary map
by Sept. 5. They have until
Nov. 15 to come to a mutual
agreement on city boundary
lines and submit the agreed
upon map bearing three signatures from the authorized
signatories to the House
Governmental Affairs Committee.
The two cities combined
would have an estimated
population in the range of
75,000. The survey can be
viewed at www.lakesideyes.
nationbuilder.com/name_
survey.

Echo Lake in north DeKalb has been plagued with stormwater runoff for
years. Residents say a proposed nearby development would increase
the problems. Photo by Andrew Cauthen

Acres Continued From Page 6A

conservation district). The
developer plans to build
43 detached single-family
homes at a density of 2.05
houses per acre.
The property is located
along Briarlake Road at Amberwood Drive and Blackwood Road.
“This is the last tract
of vacant land in northern
DeKalb County, especially
within the environs of I-285
and I-85,” said Richard
Marion, president of Briarlake Community Forest
Alliance Inc. “There are no
other large tracts of vacant
land like this. It is the only
tract of land between two
public schools”—Briarlake
Elementary and Lakeside
High schools.
“We’d really like to see
the entire 21 acres preserved
if at all possible,” Marion
said. “We’re rejecting this
proposed rezoning which
would clear-cut 70 percent
of the parcel.”
Marion said his organization was formed to
“educate the citizenry in this
area” and to “find out what
DeKalb County and the developers are doing.
“We feel like there’s no
transparency,” Marion said.
“This was all sprung on the
neighbors toward the end of
August and a lot of people
didn’t even know what was
going on. We feel like it was
being pushed through the
system without any reasonable thought process about
why this is so important.
“We’re not being told
what’s really going on,” he
said.
Marion said the developer has entered into a “quasipublic-private partnership”
with the county.
The county, Marion said,
may buy part of this tract

and keep 30 percent or 6
acres as greenspace.
“By the county contributing money that helps the
developer and lowers his
basis of cost,” Marion said.
“When you lower your basis
of cost of the acquisition of
land, you’re going to make
more money. We’re opposed
to the county subsidizing
the developers profits.”
One issue with developing the “virgin forest,”
Marion said, is that the tract
contains 30 to 60 trees that
are more than 100 years old.
“It’s an old-growth forest; it’s never been developed,” he said.
Another problem is the
possible “environmental impact issues with stormwater,”
Marion said.
“We already have environmental stormwater issues
with the Echo Lake which is
just north of the property,”
Marion said. “That lake
is constantly having to be
dredged because it fills up
with silt and the stormwater
runoff has never been appropriately addressed.
“Any further development in our area is going
to impact what happens at
Echo Lake,” Marion said.
The area’s community
council and the county’s
planning commission have
both recommended a deferral of the vote on the rezoning request. The county’s
board of commissioners
may consider the plan on
Nov. 18.
“We do not want the
zoning changed,” Marion
said. “We do not want cluster homes. We do not zerolot-line homes. We don’t
want anything that deviates from an R-100 zoning,
which is what this property
is zoned.”

local

Page 10A The Champion Free Press, Friday Nov. 14, 2014

The Little Creek Horse Farm in Decatur was one of the beneficiaries of proceeds from a parks bond. Photo by Andrew Cauthen

County must act soon to save millions
by Andrew Cauthen
andrew@dekalbchamp.com
The DeKalb County Board of Commissioners
deferred a vote on a plan the interim CEO said
will save the county millions of dollars and finish
a laundry list of transportation, parks and library
projects.

The administration of interim CEO Lee May
is proposing to refund the 2006 special transportation, parks and greenspace and libraries tax
district general obligation bonds. Approved by
voters, these bonds brought in $237.1 million.
“With that money DeKalb residents saw sidewalks being built, roads being paved, libraries
being built, parks and greenspace being acquired

and recreation centers…being built as well,” May
said during a Nov. 4 commissioners’ meeting.
Now, because of the improving economy, the
county has an opportunity to save money.
“Back in 2006 the taxpayers of DeKalb County voted through a referendum to essentially issue
debt to pay for a number of projects–in transportation, in libraries and in parks,” May said. “The

See Park on page 13A
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In

community

The Champion Free Press, Friday Nov. 14, 2014Page 11A

WEEK

Pictures

Left, D. J. Pitts (center), of Hapeville, prepares to set off the charges to level the old Executive Park building Nov. 8. Right, D. J. and others dressed as superheroes pose in front of the
leveled building. Photos courtesy of Jason Hales Photography

Located on East Howard Avenue, Kimball House restaurant in Decatur features its own garden and bee hive. Photos by John Hewitt

Photos brought to you by DCTV

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For a programming guide, visit www.yourdekalb.com/dctv

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local news

The Champion Free Press, Friday Nov. 14, 2014Page 12A

Son to honor his mother’s
memory at Thanksgiving dinner
by Kathy Mitchell
Although his mother
was murdered five years ago,
Roderick Cunningham is
honoring her memory this
Thanksgiving by doing what
she loved to do—hosting lots
of people for dinner.
After his mother was
shot to death by her husband,
Cunningham founded Beverley Cunningham Outreach
Program to combat domestic
violence. Its principal activities are assisting domestic
violence victims and sponsoring violence prevention
programs. But once a year,
Cunningham likes to hold a
special dinner in his mother’s
memory.
“This is what she did. She
was always inviting people to
come eat with us—friends,
relatives, people from
church, people from the
community. Sunday dinner
was her time to fellowship,”
Cunningham said as he prepared for the fourth annual
dinner, scheduled for Nov. 23
at Lithonia Middle School.

Surrounded by volunteers assisting with the annual dinner, Roderick Cunningham stoops to embrace his
daughter.

The number of guests
each year has averaged between 300 and 400. This year,
Cunningham has partnered
with the city of Lithonia and
hopes to feed 1,000 people.
“Most of them will be from
homes where there has been
domestic violence, but perhaps 25 percent will be other
underserved members of the
community,” he said.
The event has community sponsors, including

retail stores, grocery stores,
churches, fraternal organizations and individuals. Cunningham said he’s hoping for
additional financial and volunteer support to be sure this
year’s event goes smoothly.
“We will need at least 40 or
50 volunteers to help serve
the food,” he said. Those who
would like to help can visit
www.BCOP.org/donate or
send checks made out to the
Beverly Cunningham Out-

reach Program to P. O. Box
361061, Decatur, GA 30036.
“Often people who experience domestic violence
are struggling financially
and never get to go to a nice
sit-down restaurant and have
someone serve them a nutritious meal. I want them to
have that experience,” Cunningham said. “Also, I want
to show them that there
are people in the community who care about them

and what they have been
through. It’s especially important to me as a man to be
able to let these women and
children see that there are
men who respect them and
want to do something nice
for them without expecting
anything in return.”
Cunningham said that
in addition to his mother’s
death, he grew up witnessing
a pattern of domestic violence within his family. “My
grandmother was abused
and my mother had a first,
second and third husband
who abused her before the
third husband ended her
life. Some of my aunts were
abused as well. When people
grow up around domestic
violence, it can seem normal
to them. Boys who see their
fathers and uncles beating
up women and girls who see
their mothers and aunts accepting abuse—often blaming themselves—think that’s
just the way things are. That’s
a pattern we want to change,”
he said.
Much of the Beverley

See Dinner on page 13A

These artist renderings show the proposed Panola Slope resort on Covington Highway.

Failed South DeKalb project
could become a resort
by Andrew Cauthen
andrew@dekalbchamp.com

With much pomp and
circumstance in 2012, developers and county officials
announced a new mixeduse development in South
DeKalb that was to be the
catalyst for revitalization.
Panola Slopes, a Covington Highway development,
was supposed to consist of 22

brownstones and 15 retail locations on the ground floor.
“South DeKalb isn’t really
enjoying the same amenities
that they are enjoying in the
Perimeter and Lenox areas.
So, this being the first site
where residents and retail
can cohabitate, I think it’s
going to be a real important
statement for our area,” said
Vaughn Irons, CEO of APD
Solutions, at the time.

With only four residential
units sold, the development
never lived up to its promise.
“We were only successful in that tough economy
in moving about four of the
units out of the 23 units,”
Irons said Nov. 7, “mostly
due to credit challenges in
the market.” Those units have
been reacquired by APD Solutions.
More than 600 families

pursued purchasing the units,
“but unfortunately the financial services institutions
weren’t extending credit at
that time,” Irons said.
“Instead of devaluing the
rest of the neighborhood by
reducing the prices of the
units and selling them at a
salvage value, we decided that
we may be able to introduce
this new concept of a fullservice resort,” Irons said.

The proposed resort will
include upscale dining. There
are plans for a seafood restaurant similar to Pappadeaux’s;
a steakhouse on par with
Parkers on Ponce or Ruth’s
Chris called Bernard’s; a tapas
restaurant; and a “barcade”—
a restaurant/bar similar to
Dave & Buster’s with various
simulation and virtual reality

See Resort on page 13A

local news

The Champion Free Press, Friday Nov. 14, 2014Page 13A

Dinner Continued From Page 12A
Cunningham Outreach Project is devoted to educating
those who have experienced
domestic violence and those
at risk of it. “We want to
show young men and young
women what a healthy relationship looks like. We want
them to know that a loving
relationship doesn’t involve
threats, control and verbal
and physical abuse,” Cunningham explained. “We
want abused women to know
that they have alternatives;
they don’t have to accept
abuse.”
Because many women
stay with their abusers because they fear not being able
to support themselves and
their children, the outreach
project includes an economic
empowerment component
that teaches women to manage money, Cunningham
said.

Before he hosts this year’s
dinner, Cunningham has a
painful task to complete. “I
am going to the prison to
visit the man who killed my
mother, to see him face-toface. I feel a strong need to
do this, to ask him why he
felt he needed to do that.
Although my mother died in
2009, I still need this for closure,” he said. “I would like
to hear him express some remorse, but even if he doesn’t
he needs to see how what he
did has affected other people.
In addition to ending my
mother’s life, he damaged her
family and he damaged his
own family. My mother used
to care for children and the
children she kept grieve her
loss right along with her own
children.”

Resort Continued From Page 12A
games.
The barcade, Irons said,
was a concept proposed in
the Greater Hidden Hills
Overlay District.
Despite what some opponents are saying, the resort
will have no video poker
games, Irons said.
“Standing up talking
about a video poker machine
when we’re bringing three
restaurants to the site and
four retail stores in an area
that doesn’t have an abundance of quality retail or quality dining, I think, is shortsighted,” Vaughn said.
The 10.15-acre project
also will have 24 fully furnished villas that will be
marketed to vacationers, conventioneers, family reunions
and those seeking a staycation
option.
The resort is expected
to create 150 jobs with an
average income of more than
$50,000, according to Irons
said.
To develop the property,
APD Solutions is requesting
that the county rezone the
property from an office-commercial-residential district to
a local commercial district.
The resort’s concept is
based on similar properties in
Florida, Arizona and California, he said.
“When you look at the
amount of disposable income
that’s in the area and that the
residents within a three-mile
radius of our site are spending
$800 million to $900 million
a year on food and retail outside of DeKalb County, …that

gives us a strong indicator
that what we’re building will
work on that site,” Irons said.
“Millions of people a
year are going just a few
miles from our site to Stone
Mountain Park,” Irons said.
“We have people that are
walking the PATH trail. We
have people going to Arabia
Mountain. We’ve got millions
of cars a year going right past
our site on I-20 traveling to
other destinations. We’re not
fully taking advantage of that
in DeKalb County.”
Irons said the “modest
resort” will cater to the residents in the area. Additionally, developers will market
the resort to the area’s growing film industry.
“We spent a tremendous
amount of time analyzing
how we can build this facility and not have a negative
impact on the surrounding
communities,” said Irons,
adding that each of the surrounding neighborhood and
community associations has
provided letters of support for
the development.
The resort is being developed by APD Solutions, a
neighborhood revitalization
firm that has redeveloped
similar areas throughout the
country, Irons said.
“We bring a tremendous
amount of expertise,” Irons
said. “This is a great enhancement, and it’s all being done
without requesting a dime
from DeKalb County. We
haven’t received any incentives. We haven’t asked for
any.”

Park Continued From Page 10A
issuing of debt, in laymen’s terms, is simply
we took out a loan in order to pay for these
projects and through a dedicated millage
rate have been paying back the debt ever
since.
“We are in a situation where the debt
that was issued back in 2006 [was] at a
much higher interest rate than we have here
today,” May said. “We have an opportunity
to take advantage of that lower interest rate
in this economy that will reduce… the cost
of that debt.
“We are looking to reduce the burden on
the taxpayers in terms of paying back that
debt,” he said.
May: Parks ‘money should have been
spent in 2011’
Before the county can refinance the
bonds, it must allocate the remaining 2006
bond proceeds to qualifying projects in
a resolution specifying the projects to be
funded, the estimated cost of completion
and the estimated date of completion of
each project.
The leftover amount from the 2006
bonds, May said, is approximately $35 million in cash.
Lee’s administration has compiled a list
of projects to be financed with these funds.
“We’re trying to clean up work that
has not been done in years past,” May said.
“This bond money should have been spent
in 2011.
“If the IRS were to come knocking on
our door today—which it seems like every
other federal agency is knocking—if they
come knocking on the door today we would
be in trouble if we don’t have a new list of
projects with [projected completion] dates,”
May said.
Rader: Public needs to be involved
Commissioner Jeff Rader said the new
projects list is “the result of a relatively compressed negotiation to try to come up with
a list of projects that the administration
would support and ideally to get four members of the board to support.”
“That process is one that I am concerned about,” said Rader, who along with
Commissioner Kathie Gannon voted
against the measure.
Rader said the majority of the unobligated proceeds were dedicated to land acquisitions and to specific projects, while the
new list focuses on public works and library
projects.
Projects on the new list include: Mason
Mill Park tennis center and recreation center repairs, $1.5 million; Sugar Creek Golf
Course upgrades, $500,000; Wade Walker
park renovations, $300,000; Tobie Grant,
$2.5 million; and proposed southeast athletic complex, $1 million.
“My position is that if we’re going to
change what the voters voted on, then it
would make a great deal of sense for us to
involve the public at a broader level in that
decision making,” Rader said.
With a $11.62 million bond payment
due on Dec. 1, Lee’s administration is in a
time crunch to get the refinancing approved
by commissioners.
“It’s simple. We’re trying to save the

taxpayers’ money,” May said. “We believe
it’s our fiduciary responsibility to lower the
burden of the taxpayers.
“We have the ability to save roughly $12
million by not having to make that bond
payment this year through wrapping all that
in this activity that we’re undertaking,” May
said.
May: ‘I’m frustrated’
During the Nov. 4 commissioners’ meeting, May said he was frustrated by commissioners’ questions and delays.
“We’ve done our part in terms of asking
y’all what you wanted, including that in our
initial recommendation,” May told commissioners. “What can we do to get you all to
get four votes to move forward.
“You won’t move on the District 5 seat—
not all of you. Three of you all are ready
to move forward with it, but two of you all
keep delaying and delaying,” May said.
“Yes, I’m frustrated. When we ask you
what you want to see we respond to everything that you ask us,” May said.
“I know the game. The game is to keep
asking question after question after question. And then you’ll say, ‘My questions
aren’t answered’ and then we won’t move
forward,” May said.
“We are jeopardizing the fact that we
could save $15 million now that could go to
the overall fund balance and put us in a better financial position and at the same time
have park projects accomplished, libraries
built,” May said.
May said the savings from the refinancing would be put toward the county’s fund
balance, or savings account.
“We would help strengthen our financial
position,” May said.
“The 2014 budget, I believe, was a really
good budget because of our fund balance,”
May said. The fund balance in that budget
was $42.2 million.
“But it also had in there the expenditure
of our fund balance,” May said. “We spent it
on hiring a record number of police officers.
We hired almost 100 firefighters. We hired
12 new code enforcement officers. We gave
our employees a 3 percent cost of living adjustment.”
The county’s midyear budget adjustment
included a projected ending fund balance of
$36.4 million.
The refinancing of the bonds would
allow the county to add $11.62 million,
bringing the projected fund balance to $48
million.
Commissioner Sharon Barnes Sutton
commended May for trying to lower the tax
burden, saying, “It’s difficult for me to understand why anybody would object to that.”
Sutton said the questions that some
commissioners had were “just delay tactics
for whatever these people don’t want to
move forward with.” Sutton said.
“This is just to delay, delay, delay,” Sutton said. “It’s fine if you want to delay it; let’s
just have some honesty here. We can finally
do some good things for this county, good
things for the citizens and we want to tie it
up. Why? Just because we can?”
The Board of Commissioners’ next
meeting is Nov. 18.

The Champion Free Press, Friday Nov. 14, 2014

Education

Page 14A

Student groups at Costco shopping for supplies and ingredients.

Annual market day supports youth entrepreneurship

by Ashley Oglesby
ashley@dekalbchamp.com

In recent years, crowdsourcing business ideas have
become downright trendy;
many have tried and many
have failed. What many learn
is that it starts with the basic
practices–control and planning–to grow a successful
business.
Youth Entrepreneurs
Georgia (YEGeorgia), a nonprofit program that teaches
business education and entrepreneurship to high school
and middle school students
aims to sharpen students,
critical-thinking skills and
encourage them to think like
entrepreneurs.
The program handpicked
13 schools throughout Atlanta
and DeKalb and Gwinnett
counties to teach the curriculum.
Students are taught by
certified teachers trained to
deliver the Network for Teach-

ing Entrepreneurship (NFTE)
curriculum and guide students
through a variety of hands-on
activities to test their knowledge and understanding of
basic business principles and
practices taught in class.
Cross Keys High business
teacher Michael Green said
one activity from the curriculum is a product innovation
game.
“We give them a whole
bunch of knick-knacks–
things you would find at a
dollar store–and then I tell
them to create a product and
try to sell it to me. They have
to come up with a need for the
product and then they present
it to me as if I were a potential
investor.” He said that the last
part of the class is teaching
students how to build a business plan.
Each year, YEGeorgia students participate in Wholesale
Day and Market Day, an event
that gives them an opportunity to experience buying and

selling first hand.
This year students pitched
their product ideas to a panel
of local business owners in the
area to earn venture capital –
ranging from a minimum of
$25 to a maximum of $45 per
person.
“We wanted to make sure
that we could engage the community in the opportunity to
invest in the young people,
in helping them to become
productive citizens and so we
formed it as a nonprofit and
allowed the business community to get involved in a financial way as well, said JaKathryn Ross, executive director of
YEGeorgia.
The students used their
capital funds to shop for
items at the Costco store in
Brookhaven, one of YEGeorgia’s corporate partners.
On Nov. 4, from 10 a.m. to
1 p.m., Costco General Manager Gary Mossner and his
marketing manager, Jill Yeager, gave the students a tour

of the store and accompanied
them as they priced and purchased items needed.
Mossner has worked with
the program for more than
eight years.
He said he’s most impressed with the program’s
ability to give students “onthe-job experience which is
vital for them to understand
what the real world is like.”
He added, “If they want
to go out and start their own
business or help a parent start
a business, they’ve got the
knowledge to be successful,”
Mossner said.
This school year, the
Wholesale/Market Day event
took place at Cross Keys High
School on Nov. 7.
Ross said, “Each class has
the opportunity to put their
business skills to practice.
We like to use an experiential
learning model and so we like
to bring it off of the pages of
the textbook and help them to
learn how to apply it in their

everyday lives.”
She added, “They’ve been
learning about pricing, they’ve
been learning about product placement and primary
and secondary research and,
understanding your target
market. This gives them the
opportunity to bring all of that
together and if you’ve learned
those lessons well, the objective in most businesses is to
make a profit and so they will
make a profit, and they get to
keep their profit.”
All seven teams competed
for customers from the student body and tried to out-sell
their competitors.
The YEGeorgia program
started in 2006 as Youth Entrepreneurs Atlanta under
Georgia Pacific community
affairs. The program is now
a nonprofit and recently expanded into DeKalb County
at Cross Keys, Columbia and
Tucker high schools.

DeKalb School District improves graduation rates
by Ashley Oglesby
ashley@champnews.com
The DeKalb School District’s
graduation rate improved by more
than 2 percentage points from 60.2
percent in 2013 to 62.3 percent in
2014.
The Georgia Department of Education (GaDOE) released statewide
high school graduation rate data that
showed continued improvement by
DeKalb students. The statewide average improved less than 1 percentage
point from 71.8 percent in 2013 to
72.5 percent in 2014. During the past

two years, DeKalb’s rate improved by
5 percentage points from 57.3 percent in 2012 to 62.3 percent in 2014.
“We are proud of the improvements in our graduation rates but
there is obvious room for growth.”
said DeKalb Superintendent Michael
Thurmond in an Oct. 30 statement.
“The report indicates a need for
more rigorous intervention and support for students and parents as we
progress toward our five-year goal of
exceeding the state average by 2017.”
GADOE uses a four-year cohort
methodology to calculate graduation
rates that follow students from the

first year in high school until their
class graduates.
The five schools with the highest
graduation rates are DeKalb Early
College Academy and the DeKalb
School of the Arts, both with 100
percent rates; Arabia Mountain, 98.3
percent; Chamblee Charter, 83.5 percent; and Redan, 79.9 percent.
The high schools with significant
growth in percentage points are Lithonia, 9.7 percent; Towers, 9.6 percent; Stephenson, 8.1 percent; Cedar
Grove, 7.5 percent; and McNair, 5.8
percent. Each school is identified as a
Title I school.

Seventeen of 25 high schools
showed improvement with 14
schools exceeding the district average
graduation rate. Nine DeKalb schools
earned graduation rates that met or
exceeded the state average.
Destiny Achievers Academy, a
small school for students with unique
challenges, demonstrated the highest
year-over-year improvement of 21.5
percent.
For more information, visit www.
gadoe.org.

local news

The Champion Free Press, Friday, Nov. 14, 2014Page 15A

Pastor James Ward, center, receives a Distinguished Service to Veterans
Award on behalf of Antioch Lithonia Missionary Baptist Church. The
award was presented by Waymon Williams, chairman of the Veterans Affairs Advisory Board, left, and interim DeKalb County CEO Lee May, right.

Veterans Continued From Page 1A

fice is one that we thank you
for but we also thank veterans for the sacrifice of days
away from their family, of
times of danger and…times
of boredom.
“When deployed or serving in a reserve capacity,
you have stood ready and
watching…to protect this
country and the people who
live here,” Rader said. “I am
proud to be among you and
I’m proud to be with you.”
Also a U. S. Navy veteran,
Commissioner Stan Watson, said, “The whole time
I was in the Navy, some 12
years…no one ever asked

me whether I was a Democrat or a Republican. All
we were there to do was to
serve our country…to make
sure the people back home
stayed safe.”
Waymon Williams,
chairman of the Veterans
Affairs Advisory Board, said
that it is important to support veterans.
“One out of every 10 people in the state of Georgia
is a veteran,” Williams said.
“We need to have an active
interest in the troops that we
have in the state, especially
those who just left service.”
Ed Jennings, HUD Re-

James Blaylock, president of the Military Order
of the Purple Heart Foundation, addresses fellow
veterans.

gion IV administrator, said,
“As I see these men and
women who put their lives
on the line for our country
to allow me to call myself an
America,…we stand with
you veterans and we want
to make sure you have the
respect you deserve.”
The keynote speaker
for the event was James
Blaylock, president of the
Military Order of the Purple
Heart Foundation.
“When we live in peace
and are not affected by war,
memories of war dim in the
eyes of many Americans,”
said Blaylock, who served in

Robert T. Nelson of the Veterans Affairs Advisory Board of
DeKalb County salutes during the presentation of colors.

the U. S. Marine Corps from
1963-1968. As a rotary wing
aviator in the Vietnam War,
he lost his right hand and
forearm.
“The significance of
Veterans Day becomes confused and distorted,” Blaylock said. “To many, Veterans Day is just another day.
To others, it’s a holiday and a
day off of work. They’re not
sure why it’s a holiday, but
they’ll take it.
“Veterans Day is a day
when the nation pauses to
salute all those who have
served and those who continue to serve in uniform,”

Rubble Continued From Page 1A

Screening Continued From Page 1A

Wearing a cape and surrounded by several people
in superhero costumes, fouryear-old DJ Pitts of Hapeville was chosen to push
the button setting off the
charges. DJ spent six months
at Children’s and wore many
capes, including one that
said “Super DJ.”
Atlanta Demolition had
the $3.2 million contract
for asbestos abatement and
demolition of four buildings on the property totaling
350,000 square feet. It will
take a couple of months to
clear the debris.
An advertisement in the
1970s described the building
as “Atlanta’s Prestige Suburban Hotel.” The boasted

and suffering due to asthma,
allergies and related conditions.
“What we prevent by
treating them is... an asthma
exacerbation, an attack that
can be very serious.”
The screenings took
place on the concourse area
during the Atlanta Hawks
vs. New York Knicks basketball game.
Attendees completed a
questionnaire regarding allergies, smoking, specific
symptoms related to asthma,
performed breathing tests
(spirometry and fractional
exhaled nitric oxide, referred to as FeNO) and had

convention facilities for 800,
a grand ballroom, restaurant
and 474 “comfort-conditioned” rooms.
According to a news release, Children’s Healthcare
of Atlanta determined that
“renovation was not a viable
option for this building”
because of its “outdated construction and design.”
“The current structure…
would not be able to serve
any potential future needs of
the pediatric health care system,” the news release stated.
“In addition, removing the
building will contribute to
the safety and beautification
of the surrounding neighborhood.”

consultations with boardcertified allergist.
“This event is a chance
for individuals to be tested
for these life-changing
medical conditions when
they might not otherwise
have the opportunity,” said
Tonya Winders, CEO of The
Network
In addition to the free
screenings, The Network
partnered with Not One
More Life, a volunteer advocacy organization that
provides asthma education
to inner-city individuals. As
a part of the partnership,
The Network and ACAAI
provided 50 game tickets to

Stop bullying now
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he said. “We sometimes
overlook the sacrifices of
those who come before us
but remembering has a profound effect.”
Blaylock said veterans
deserve a day of recognition
because “they have sacrificed so much for the rest of
us.”
“To those who have
served and to those who
continue to do so, …each of
you…are appreciated more
than you can know,” he said.

inner-city Atlanta children
and their families.
“If asthma and allergy
aren’t diagnosed and treated
early on, symptoms can
make every day miserable
for sufferers, and the effects
of the conditions can sometimes be fatal,” said Michael
Foggs, ACAAI president.
“The screening program
provides this information at
no cost to participants, and
we are happy to be joining
The Network and Not One
More Life to increase awareness surrounding these
issues throughout the community.”

business

The Champion Free Press, Friday Nov. 14, 2014Page 16A

Ice cream
of the crop

Frozen dessert company uses fairtrade, farm-to-kitchen ingredients
by Kathy Mitchell
When Jeni’s Splendid Ice Creams
opened its third Atlanta area “scoop shop”
Nov. 6, founder Jeni Britton Bauer was
at the downtown Decatur location to
greet visitors at a friends and family open
house.
Among those who dropped by was
Kristen Chidsey. “I’m from Columbus
[Ohio]. I loved Jeni’s when I lived there.
I’m thrilled that you’re now in Decatur,”
she told Bauer.
Bauer started her first ice cream business, Scream Ice Cream, in Columbus,
Ohio’s North market in 1996. “It didn’t
work out, but I learned from my mistakes. I knew making ice cream was what
I wanted to do so I started over as Jeni’s
Splendid Ice Creams in 2002. I won’t say
it’s been easy. It was an uphill climb. I actually lived in my car for three months at
one point, but I wasn’t going to give up.”
Today, Jeni’s has 18 stores in six states.
“I’m not sure where we’ll go from here,”
she said. “We’re taking it one step at a
time.”
Bauer’s interest in creating frozen
dessert grew out of a hobby blending perfumes and collecting essential oils when
she was a student at Ohio State University.
“I decided to try mixing essential oils to
create something edible. Ice cream was a
logical step,” she said.
Jeni’s Splendid Ice Cream products are
different from others in that its kitchen
team makes every ice cream, sorbet and
frozen yogurt “from the ground up,” using the milk of grass-grazed cows, local
produce, American bean-to-bar chocolate and select ingredients from around
the world, according to Bauer.
“Most ice creams are made from mixes and artificial ingredients. Ours are all
made from fresh, natural ingredients. Our
production facility in Ohio is surrounded
by farms, not just dairy farms, but farms
that grow all sorts of fresh produce. Our
kitchens are like the kitchen of an upscale
restaurant on a busy night. Cooks are
roasting, blending, tasting. The result is
the best ice cream in the world,” she said.
Bauer continually tries new taste combinations, and her shops feature such un-

usual flavors as buttercup pumpkin with
amoretti cookies, dark chocolate peppermint, Middle West whiskey eggnog,
brambleberry crisp and sweet potato with
torched marshmallows. “We also do the
traditional flavors—but our own version
of them. Our vanilla isn’t like any you’ve
ever tasted, and people who really like
milk chocolate love our milk chocolate.
You taste the milk first, then the chocolate.
That’s the way it should be,” she said.
“We try to buy everything directly so
that farmers receive the maximum benefit,
and we use fair-trade certified ingredients
such as African vanilla and Dutch cocoa.
We buy vanilla from a woman-owned fair
trade farm in Uganda, for example,” said
Bauer, co-founder of Columbus-based
nonprofit Local Matters, which she describes as a fresh-food-for-all enterprise.
Keeping to such standards can be
challenging, Bauer acknowledged. “It’s not
as easy as you’d think to buy milk from a
single source. Most milk on the market
comes from several dairies. We have to be
careful to be sure we’re using only milk
from grass-fed cows.”
Bauer said she’s proud that Jeni’s is a B
Corporation. The charter of a Benefit or
B Corporation requires the company to
conform to socially beneficial practices,
according to About.com. “These practices
can include protecting the environment
or preserving employee benefits. The establishment of B Corporations grew out of
the growing interest in socially responsible
investing, corporate social responsibility
and social entrepreneurship. B Corporations seek the tax benefits of a nonprofit
corporation within a business structure
that seeks a profit even while providing
desirable social benefits. Some states have
passed legislation to provide these tax
benefits to B Corporations,” the website
states.
Bauer said Decatur is a perfect location for her newest shop. “People in Decatur really care about good food, and they
care about conducting business in a socially responsible way. There are so many
fine restaurants here. After people have a
really fine meal, they should be able to go
for an exceptional dessert.”

Jeni Bauer, left, greets Decatur resident Kristen Chidsey, who first tasted Jeni’s
Ice Cream products when she lived in Columbus, Ohio.

The Voice of Business in DeKalb County

DeKalb Chamber of Commerce

Two Decatur Town Center, 125 Clairemont Ave., Suite 235, Decatur, GA 30030
404.378.8000
www.DeKalbChamber.org

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The Champion Free Press, Friday Nov. 14, 2014Page 17A

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Sports

The Champion Free Press, Friday Nov. 14, 2014Page 18A

Four teams win cross country state titles
by Carla Parker
carla@dekalbchamp.com

D

eKalb was dominant in
the Cross Country State
Championships as four
teams, including two private schools, brought home state
titles Nov. 8.
It was a sweep for DeKalb County in the Class AAAAA championship meet as Clarkston won the boys’

Boucher said. “This race was truly a
team effort as we were able to place
our top five runners in a strong pack
from places 5 to 30 to pace our way
to victory.”
Freshman Kelly May Sheehan
led the way for Dunwoody, finishing
fifth with a time of 20:04.00. Junior
Ansley Heavern was the next Wildcat to finish, coming in at 12th with
a time of 20:37.50.
Freshman Samantha Cameron

‘This all began three years
ago as this team dedicated
itself and worked very hard
to improve each year.’

Clarkston boys

– Wesley Etienne

Clarkston head cross country coach

title and Dunwoody brought home
the girls’ title.
The state championship was the
first for the Clarkston Angoras boys’
cross country team.
“This all began three years ago
as this team dedicated itself and
worked very hard to improve each
year,” said Clarkston head cross
country coach Wesley Etienne. “Assistant coaches Dione Hester and
Jamia Byrd helped me create a better culture with some great kids. I
could not ask for a better group of
people to work with here.”
Junior Abbas Abbkar led the
way for Clarkston, finishing sixth
with a time of 16:38.66. Senior
Gidey Sahlu finished at 14th with a
time of 16:57.93, sophomore Suheib
Mohamed came in at 25th with a
time of 17:25.29, and freshman Awet
Fitwi rounded out the top 30 runners from Clarkston, coming in at
27th overall with a time of 17:30.19.
The state title was the fifth state
title of any kind for the school.
“I am very thankful for all the
support of the other DeKalb County
cross country coaches and other
coaches across the state for their
support whenever I called them,”
Etienne said. “The parents and other
supporters in the DeKalb County
School District were also very much
a part of this state championship.”
The Dunwoody Lady Wildcats
won their second state title in three
years with a 77-95 win over Starr’s
Mill. Dunwoody coach Bryan
Boucher said the team had a “great
and historic day.”
“The girls on the team worked
hard to earn their second state
championship in three years,”

was right behind Heavern at 13th
with a time of 20:38.30. Junior AnnMarie Sills finished 17th (21:02.40)
and senior Ellie Conoley came in at
30th (21:32.40).
“We were proud to share the podium with the Clarkston boys for a
DeKalb County sweep in the Class
AAAAA races,” Boucher said. “It was
a great day for the Wildcats and one
we will remember for years to come.”
The St. Pius boys’ team won its
fifth consecutive title and its eighth
title in program history. The Golden
Lions won the Class AAAA title with
a 55-94 win over Marist. Senior Stephen Martinez led St. Pius finishing
third with a time of 16:26:22.
Senior Nik Calia finished seventh with a time of 16:45.88, and
senior Ryan Kelly rounded out St.
Pius’ top 10 finishers with a ninth
place finish (16:51.51).
Marist had one top 10 finisher in
junior Frank Pittman, who finished
second with a time of 16:24.37.
Marist girls won their seventh
consecutive title and 15th in program history with a 20-117 win over
St. Pius in the Class AAAA meet.
Marist had runners finished in the
top three. Senior Morgan Ilse won
the individual title with a time of
18:25.90. Freshman Josie Wirtz finished second with a time of 19:18.88
and senior Caitie Faust rounded out
the top three with a time of 19:26.62.
Sophomore Kendall Nelson
(seventh) and senior Emily Harrast
(ninth) rounded out the top 10 finishers with times of 20:07.37 and
20:19.73 respectively. Marist was undefeated in 2014 meets and defended
its No. 1 ranking in Georgia for the
second consecutive year.

Dunwoody girls

St. Pius boys

Marist girls

Sports

The Champion Free Press, Friday Nov. 14, 2014Page 19A

Cedar Grove

Glenlake girls tennis wins
ALTA city championship
Columbia

Lithonia

Tucker

Marist

St. Pius X

Stephenson

Seven football teams to
compete in state playoffs

by Carla Parker
carla@dekalbchamp.com

T

he road to the Georgia Dome for
the football state championship
games begins Nov. 14 and seven
teams from DeKalb County
participating.
Cedar Grove, Marist, St. Pius,
Stephenson and Tucker will host a playoff
game, while Columbia and Lithonia
will be on the road. Region 2-AAAAAA
champions and No. 1 seed Tucker will host
Tift County, the No. 4 seed from Region
1-AAAAAA. The game will be held at
Hallford Stadium Nov. 14 at 7:30 p.m.
Stephenson will host Alexander,
the No. 3 seed from Region 5, Nov. 14
at Panthersville Stadium at 7:30 p.m.
Stephenson enters the playoffs as a No. 2

seed after losing to Creekside 34-27 in the
region title game Nov. 7.
In Class AAAA, Region 6 champions
St. Pius will host Region 5 No. 4 seed
Fayette County Nov. 14 at 7:30 p.m. No. 2
seed Marist will host Whitewater, the No. 3
seed from Region 5, Nov. 14 at 7:30 p.m.
Columbia, the No. 3 seed out of Region
6, will travel to Sandy Creek, the Region
5 No. 2 seed, Nov. 14 at 7:30 p.m. No. 4
seed Lithonia will travel to Woodward
Academy, the No. 1 seed from Region 5,
Nov. 14 at 7:30 p.m. This is Lithonia’s first
playoff appearance since 2002.
After losing to Blessed Trinity 28-21 in
the Region 4-AAA title game, Cedar Grove
will enter the playoffs as a No. 2 seed.
Cedar Grove will host Westside-Augusta
Nov. 15 at Panthersville Stadium at 7:30
p.m.

The Glenlake Tennis Center girls 14 and younger
ALTA team ended its third consecutive season with an
ALTA City championship Nov. 8.
The team has won three city championships in two
different age groups and in three different divisions. The
team competed in the B1 division, the highest division
offered by ALTA for a 14 and younger team.
“The city of Decatur is extremely proud of all of
the girls who have worked so hard over the past years
to become champions,” said Cheryl Burnette, assistant
director of Decatur Active Living.

Sports

The Champion Free Press, Friday Nov. 14, 2014Page 20A

Athlete of
the Week
Callaway

Johnson

Smith

Next Level
Each week The Champion spotlights former
high school players from the county who are
succeeding in athletics on the college level.

The Champion chooses a male and
female high school Athlete of the
Week each week throughout the
school year. The choices are based
on performance and nominations by
coaches. Please e-mail nominations
to carla@dekalbchamp.com by
Monday at noon.
MALE ATHLETE OF THE WEEK

Patrick Callaway, Delaware (football): The
Abbas Abbkar, Clarkston (cross
senior linebacker from M.L. King had five
tackles and half a sack in the 31-28 win over country): The junior finished sixth
place (16:38.66) in the boys Class
Albany Nov. 8.
Monqavious Johnson, Morehouse
(football): The sophomore quarterback from
M.L. King had a passing touchdown and a
rushing touchdown, and threw for 129 yards
and added six rushing yards in the 26-20
win over Kentucky State Nov. 8.
Terrance Smith, Florida State (football):
The junior linebacker from Southwest
DeKalb had five tackles, one interception
and a quarterback hit in the 34-20 win over
Virginia Nov. 8.

AAAAA Cross Country State
Championship to lead Clarkston to its
first cross country state title Nov. 8.

FEMALE ATHLETE OF THE WEEK
Kelly May Sheehan, Dunwoody
(cross country): The freshman finished
fifth place (20:04.00) in the girls
Class AAAAA Cross Country State
Championship to lead the Dunwoody
Lady Wildcats to their second cross
country state title Nov. 8.

Pet of the Week

Fancy (ID#:
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to her owner's
cruelty charge;
she is finally able
to be released!!
She has become a
staff favorite at the
shelter because
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Fancy is a 2 year
old American Pit
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She really likes toys; especially tennis balls. She
can't wait to have a few of her own in her new
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If you adopt Fancy during November under
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Please come visit Fancy at the DeKalb
Shelter today or for more information
email adoption@dekalbanimalservices.
com or call (404) 294-2165. To view other
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