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the DeKalb

FRIDaY, aUGUST 19, 2016 • Vol. 19, No. 19 • FREE

Serving East Atlanta, Avondale Estates, Brookhaven, Chamblee, Clarkston, Decatur, Doraville, Dunwoody, Lithonia, Pine Lake, Tucker and Stone Mountain.

• A PUBLICATION OF ACE III COMMUNICATIONS •

NIGHT MELODIES RETURN TO LITHONIA

by Gale Horton Gay

Music lovers relaxed on the lawn, in stadium seats and in a VIP area
with tables and chairs at Jazz Under the Stars at Lithonia Amphitheater
Aug. 13. Photos by Gale Horton Gay

CHAMPIONNEWSPAPER

Seven years ago, outdoor music died
in Lithonia. The concerts that once attracted hundreds to the small city in
southeast DeKalb County came to an unceremonious end.
Now Jason Lary is on a mission to
bring music, comedy and other forms of
entertainment back to downtown Lithonia.
Lary, who won the bid to take over
marketing and management of the city’s
amphitheater last year, pulled off his first
concert of 2016 on Aug. 13. Jazz Under
the Stars featured vocalist Liz Spraggins, trombonist George Bohanon and
saxophonist Ralph Jones. A number of
other musicians, including a local group
from St. Paul AME Church, also performed.
One of the performers told the audi-

CHAMPIONNEWS

ence, “I’m excited to be part of the resurgence of Lithonia.”
Hundreds turned out for the 7 to 11
p.m. concert on a hot but rainless night.
Picnic baskets, coolers and candlelight
were prevalent throughout the amphitheater whether the concertgoers were
seated on the lawn, in stadium seats
or at reserved tables and chairs. Vendors—Von’s B arbecue of Lithonia, Luxor
Lounge and Bistro and chiropractor Brian
Utley among them—also set up tents to
market their goods and services.
“I really like it,” said Janice Ross of
Stone Mountain. “I like the variety of different jazz presenters. It’s the jazz I grew
up with.”
Ross added she also appreciated the
location, “having something that I can
come to and enjoy and not have to drive
thousands of miles to get there.”

See Concert on Page 5

CHAMPIONNEWSPAPER

CHAMPIONNEWS

local

DEKALB FREE PRESS Friday, August 19, 2016 • Page 2

Recount confirms
win for Anderson in
state senate race
by Carla Parker
carla@dekalbchamp.com

Dunwoody Police Chief Billy Grogan honored sergeants Jason Dove and Robert Parsons as well as
officers Nathan Berryman, Michael Vermillion and Guinevere Wiencek at a Dunwoody City Council
meeting Aug. 8. Photo submitted.

Dunwoody officers honored
for response, know-how
by R. Scott Belzer
sbelzer@dekalbchamp.com
Dunwoody Police Department
sergeants Jason Dove and Robert
Parsons as well as officers Nathan
Berryman, Michael Vermillion and
Guinevere Wiencek were honored Aug.
8 for demonstrating medical know-how in
intense situations.
According to Dunwoody Police
officials, on July 13, officers Wiencek
and Vermillion responded to a medical
call at a local apartment complex.
An unconscious man with labored
breathing called for four doses of EVZIO
Naloxone—a medication designed for
opioid overdose—that eventually saved
his life.
On June 16, Sgt. Dove and Officer
Berryman responded to a Dunwoody
hotel medical call. After the officers were
informed that two individuals had possibly
overdosed, three doses of EVZIO
Naloxone were administered and both
were eventually revived and recovered.
Dunwoody Police Chief Billy Grogan
publicly recognized the officers’ efforts as
well as the officer who made it possible
at the Aug. 8 Dunwoody City Council
meeting.
According to Grogan, the situations
could have been deadly had Parsons not
attended a class discussing prescription
drugs, heroin and other addictive
substances. Upon his return, he informed
Grogan about the department’s need for
the medication.
“We discussed it as a staff, he did
some research, and found a grant where

we could get Naloxone free for all the
officers in the department,” Grogan said.
“In October, everyone went through the
training and began carrying it.”
By December 2015, Parsons had
already administered two doses of
Naloxone to an unconscious man who
appeared to be the victim of an overdose.
Grogan credits his intuition with saving
four lives in the past year.
“I certainly want to recognize Sgt.
Parsons for going through the [training]
and finding the grant for the department,
but also these officers who, when these
stressful situations happened, responded,
knew what to do, and administered this
life-saving drug,” Grogan said.
The Dunwooody Police Department
received the grant of EVZIO Naloxone
from kaléo, a pharmaceutical company
based in Virginia.
“It is hard not to get choked up when
we hear of another life being saved
by the Dunwoody Police Department
with the help of EVZIO,” said Spencer
Williamson, CEO of kaléo, in a release
prepared by Dunwoody police. “I want
to congratulate Chief Grogan and the
department’s outstanding public safety
officers for their remarkable efforts to
respond to the opioid overdose crisis
facing this country. We salute their
efforts and are glad to have been able to
contribute to their work.”
According to the Georgia Bureau of
Investigation, overdose deaths in Georgia
rose from 61 in 2014 to 134 in 2015. The
number of overdose deaths for 2016 is
expected to be significantly higher than in
2015.

A recount of votes
upheld former Lithonia
Mayor and District 92 Rep.
Tonya P. Anderson’s win
over Dee Dawkins-Haigler
in the run-off election on
July 26.
Election offices in
DeKalb, Newton and
Rockdale counties
confirmed the 10-vote
win for Anderson in the
Democratic race for District
Tonya P. Anderson
43 state senate. Anderson
received 4,276 and Haigler
received 4,266 votes.
Although Haigler
won DeKalb with 1,288
votes to Anderson’s 1,035
votes, Anderson won both
Rockdale and DeKalb with
combined votes of 3,2412,978.
Anderson will take on
incumbent Sen. Janice
Van Ness a second time
for the District 43 seat in
Dee Dawkins-Haigler
November.
Van Ness, the founder
of Peachtree Academy Private School and Early Childhood
Centers in Conyers, won the seat in a special election
runoff in December 2015 after former State Sen. Ronald
Ramsey was appointed to a judgeship in DeKalb County
Traffic Court by Gov. Nathan Deal.
Van Ness defeated Anderson by 84 votes.

AUCTION

Bank Owned Property
3 Properties in Dekalb County Property

• 6629 Manoleta Drive, Lithonia - 3 BR/2 BA Home
• 3944 Wolcott Cir, Lithonia - 3 BR/2 BA Home
• 3722 Salem Chapel Dr - 3 BR/2 BA Home
Also Selling 20 More Properties in August 31st Auction:
Jackson, Hart, Clayton, Morgan, Cobb, Elbert, Carroll,
Newton, Fulton, Coweta, Walton, Rockdale, Douglas,
Oglethorpe & Barrow Counties

Wednesday, Aug. 31st at 7:00 P.M.
Sale Site: Courtyard Marriott in Duluth

Selling 75+ Bank Owned Properties Throughout GA:
August 29th, 30th and 31st

For More Info or Free Brochure Call:

800-841-9400
GAL #274

www.HudsonAndMarshall.com

local

DEKALB FREE PRESS Friday, August 19, 2016 • Page 3

aRounddeKalB
countYWide

BRooKHaVen

LifeLine Animal Project’s “Tail End of Summer” promotion will offer
dogs heavier than 20 pounds and all cat adoptions for $10 throughout
August.
LifeLine shelters include locations in Avondale Estates (129 Lake
Street), Scottdale (3172 E. Ponce de Leon Ave.), Decatur (845 Camp
Road), and Atlanta (860 Marietta Blvd. NW).
“We are extremely crowded at our shelters this month and hope that
this promotion will encourage people to come into the shelter and adopt
one of our wonderful animals,” said LifeLine Public Relations Director
Karen Hirsch. “We have reached no-kill rates at both DCAS and FCAS,
but can only sustain it if our community continues to support us by adopting
or fostering from the shelters.”
Adopters will receive a cat or dog that has been spayed or neutered,
vaccineated and microchipped for $10. Services of this nature are typically
a $250 expense.
For more information on LifeLine Animal Project, visit lifelineanimal.org.

Brookhaven police will host a community meeting Aug. 25, 6:30 p.m.,
at Chamblee First United Methodist Church located at 4147 Chamblee
Dunwoody Road. The meeting is an opportunity for residents to ask
questions, voice their concerns and get to know the officers. For more
information, visit www.brookhavenga.gov.

LifeLine Animal Project offers $10 adoptions

DeKalb Symphony Orchestra to hold auditions
The DeKalb Symphony Orchestra is holding auditions for string
players for its 52nd concert season. There are currently openings in the
violin, viola, cello and bass sections. Those interested in auditioning,
should visit www.DeKalbSymphony.org, or call (678) 891-3565 for
additional information.

Community chorus auditioning singers
As it enters its 39th season, the DeKalb Choral Guild is auditioning
singers. Mary E. Root, DeKalb Choral Guild music director/conductor,
compared the auditions to a first date. “We both know we are interested,
but we need to get to know each other better. I hope that through a
respectful and engaging audition we will begin a great relationship,” she
said.
Auditioning with the community chorus involves:
• A prepared solo, which can be an art song, aria, folk song,
selection from a musical, or hymn. (No pop music). Those
auditioning should bring a copy of the music for the accompanist
as well as one for themselves if the piece is not memorized. The
prepared solo does not need to be memorized but should be
chosen to show musical strengths.
• An interview with staff to ascertain/review choral experience,
desire to participate, and understanding of requirements of
membership.
• Vocalization to determine placement.
To schedule an audition, call (678) 318-1362. The first performance
of the season will be Mosaic Requiem, Nov. 5 at Living Grace Lutheran
Church in Tucker.

aVondale estates
Registration open for Labor Day race

Registration is now opened for the 38th Annual Labor Day Race on
Sept. 5 in Avondale Estates. Runners and walkers can register on www.
active.com. The event includes a 1-mile and a 5K race, followed by an
awards ceremony. The race starts and ends at Willis Park, at Dartmouth
Avenue and Clarendon Place. The event benefits the Amyotrophic
Lateral Sclerosis (ALS) Association. Volunteers, race coordinators and
sponsors are needed. For more information, contact Karen Holmes at
(404) 294-5400.

Police to host community meeting

cHaMBlee

First read complete on drug-free Dresden Park zone
Chamblee City Council unanimously passed the first reading of an
ordinance cracking down on drugs around Dresden Park.
The ordinance will establish a boundary within 1,000 feet of the
park—located at 2301 Dresden Drive—as an official “Drug Free
Recreation Zone.”
State law allows cities to designate any area within 1,000 feet of a
park or recreation area a drug-free recreational zone. The designation
increases penalties for drug offenses to deter drug-related crime.
“Since the 2014 annexation when Chamblee police officers began
patrolling Dresden Park, records show at least 100 suspicious persons
and vehicle calls in that location,” reads the agenda item. “There have
been 5 arrests made for possession of marijuana and one with intent to
distribute marijuana and a controlled substance.”
The proposed ordinance states “it shall be unlawful for any person
to manufacture, distribute, dispense, or possess with intent to distribute
a controlled substance or marijuana or a counterfeit substance in these
designated areas,” as well as “any person who violates this code is guilty
of a felony.”
The ordinance’s first reading took place on Aug. 16 and the second
reading is scheduled to take place Sept. 20

decatuR

Symposium to discuss Reconstruction in DeKalb
County and Atlanta
DeKalb History Center is holding a symposium designed to provide
participants with a better understanding of the Reconstruction period
following the Civil War (1865 – 1877) and its effects on DeKalb County
and Atlanta. Speakers will include Wendy Hamand Venet and Glenn
Eskew from Georgia State University (GSU) and Brian Wills from
Kennesaw State University (KSU).
Venet specializes in 19th century U.S. history. She teaches courses
on the American Civil War and Reconstruction at GSU. Venet often
speaks and writes on the Civil War era; her most recent book is A
Changing Wind: Commerce and Conflict in Civil War Atlanta.
Eskew specializes in the history of the American South. A member
of the GSU faculty since 1993, Eskew has published works on the
American South. Eskew also educates teachers and travels the world
lecturing on Southern history. His latest book is Johnny Mercer: Southern
Songwriter for the World.
Wills is the director of the Center for the Study of the Civil War Era
and professor of history at KSU. He is the author of numerous works
relating to the American Civil War, including The River Was Dyed with
Blood: Nathan Bedford Forrest and Fort Pillow.
Tickets are $40 for DeKalb History Center members and $50 for nonmembers. Ticket price includes lunch. The symposium will be held Aug.
20, 10 a.m. – 1:30 p.m. in the Historic DeKalb Courthouse, 101 E. Court
Square in downtown Decatur.

stone Mountain
City to dedicate children’s library

Stone Mountain will hold a dedication ceremony of the Children’s
Lending Library at Randolph Medlock Park on Aug. 27 at 11 a.m.
Attendees can bring a book and take a book home. The park is located
at 735 Ridge Avenue. For more information, visit www.stonemountaincity.
org.

local

DEKALB FREE PRESS Friday, August 19, 2016 • Page 4

DeKalb Sheriff’s
deputy arrested
after investigation
by Horace Holloman
horace@dekalbchamp.com

Hemy Neuman retrial under way
by Horace Holloman
horace@dekalbchamp.com
As a photo of Rusty Sneiderman smiling and wearing a
Cleveland Browns jersey displayed on monitors throughout
a DeKalb County courtroom,
his father Donald Sneiderman
testified he spoke to his son via
Skype just hours before he was
shot and killed.
On Aug. 12, the prosecution rested its case in the retrial
of Hemy Neuman, arguing
that Neuman planned and had
every intention of killing Rusty
Sneiderman the day of Nov. 18,
2010.
Neuman told DeKalb County
Superior Court Judge Gregory
Adams he would exercise his
right not to testify during his trial.
In November of 2010, Neuman shot and killed Rusty
Sneiderman after Sneiderman
dropped his son off at a Dunwoody daycare center.
In July of 2015, The Georgia

Supreme Court overturned the
murder conviction of Neuman
in a 6-1 vote, citing that Adams
wrongfully admitted evidence
from two medical experts.
Allegedly, Neuman and
Rusty Sneiderman’s wife Andrea Sneiderman were involved in an affair. Andrea Sneiderman denied the claims. Neuman was Andrea Sneiderman’s
boss while the two worked at
GE Energy.
Andrea Sneiderman was
found guilty in 2013 for lying under oath during the trial of Neuman and was sentenced to five
years in prison. She was later
released on parole in 2014. Due
to an appeal with her case, Andrea Sneiderman will not testify
in the Neuman retrial.
David Freymen, an Atlanta
FBI agent assigned to the Neuman case, said he searched
through the data base of Neuman’s Ipad and cell phone after
the shooting.
“In this case, we tried to look

for things relevant to the case,
specifically when the [shooting]
took place,” Freymen said. “It
had been six months before we
were asked to assist.”
Freymen said text message
exchanges between Neuman
and Andrea Sneiderman could
have been deleted, but said he
was able to find several internet
searches for “suicide,” “gun,”
and “federal gun registration” on
Neuman’s device.
Freymen testified that Neuman also searched “can police
trace cell phones.”
“What I did was categorize
the information and put groupings and timelines into a specific
order,” Freymen said.
According to Freymen, Neuman searched the internet for
“private gun sales in Georgia”
weeks before the shooting.
After the prosecution rested
its case, defense attorneys representing Neuman asked for Adams to make an immediate ruling. Adams denied the motion.

Dunwoody appoints members to six city boards
by R. Scott Belzer
sbelzer@dekalbchamp.com

Dunwoody City Council
welcomed new members to
the city’s Alcohol License
Review Board, Board of Zoning
Appeals, Construction Board
of Adjustments and Appeals,
Planning Commission,
Sustainability Committee
and Volunteer Coordinating
Committee.
Richard Browne was
appointed to a position on
the Board of Zoning Appeals
previously occupied by Gerri
Penn.
Browne—a 33-year
Dunwoody resident and retired
attorney for Southern Natural
Gas and BellSouth—said
his knowledge of municipal
ordinances will be an asset to
the Zoning Appeals Board.
“I am currently retired and
looking to volunteer my time in
a constructive and meaningful

way,” Browne said. “I believe I
can do so serving this board.”
Other new appointments
include Jason Metzger
and Dana McClure to the
Sustainability Committee.
Metzger, a five-year
Dunwoody resident, holds a
bachelor’s degree in industrial
engineering and a master’s
degree in environmental
engineering from Clemson
University. He has worked
for the Georgia Department
of Natural Resources in land
protection, hazardous waste
management and air protection
since 2004.
“I am interested in
contributing to my community,”
Metzger said. “I feel that using
fewer resources, with proper
implementation, can be done
without sacrificing quality of
life.”
McClure, an architect
of more than 25 projects
and holder of degrees from

Clemson University and
Georgia Tech, said her talents
in leadership will make a
difference in Dunwoody’s
sustainability.
“I’d like to be involved in
the goings-on of the city in
which I live and grew up,”
McClure said. “As a designer
of the built environment, I am
focused on preserving the
natural environment for future
generations.”
Worth Wells and Beverly
Wingate were reappointed to
the Alcohol License Review
Board after their terms expired
on June 22, 2015, according
to the meeting’s agenda item.
Other re-appointments include
Kirk Anders to the Planning
Commission, Jeremy Berry
and Barbara Robinson
to Volunteer Coordinating
Committee and Howard
Karchmer to the Construction
Board of Adjustments and
Appeals.

Malik Brown, a deputy with the DeKalb
County Sheriff’s office, was placed on
administrative leave after the Georgia Bureau
of Investigation issued a warrant for Brown’s
arrest.
Brown was charged with making false
statements in regards to a gun Brown’s son
allegedly purchased.
According to reports, Brown asked an
officer to trace the serial number of a handgun
Brown’s son planned to purchase.
In a statement from Brown taken in May
of 2014 when the incident occurred, Brown
said “I spoke with my son, Arthion Rodriques
Brown, concerning buying a weapon from
someone who was trying to sell to him. I
advised Arthion that he needed to make sure
the gun was not stolen before he brought the
gun.”
Brown admitted to having processed the
weapon through the Georgia Crime Information
Center (GCIC) database for personal reasons,
according to a statement issued by the DeKalb
Sheriff’s Office.
In a statement taken from Communications
Operator Sparkle Sealey in May of 2014,
Sealey said Brown mentioned tracing the gun
was for personal use after the serial numbers
were run through the GCIC system.
“Once the hit was submitted, Sergeant
Brown then informed [me] that [Brown’s]
son purchased a weapon from a friend and
that he should not have purchased it without
having the weapon checked. Once I received
a response on the weapon, I informed Brown
the weapon is coming back as stolen,”
Sealey said. “I even informed Brown [that]
the Carrollton Police Department was the
department that needed to be notified.”
In a statement, Sealey said Brown using
the GCIC database for personal reasons
created an uncomfortable situation.
“I have been certified in GCIC for years
and never was put in a position like this. I was
acting out of good faith and was following
a supervisor’s order to run a weapon. If
Sergeant Brown would have informed me
beforehand that I was running a gun for
personal reasons, I would have definitely
told her no and explained why,” Sealey said.
“Once I realized [Brown] was not going to
follow the necessary steps when locating a
stolen gun, that’s when I decided to take this
matter to another person.”
Brown told investigators “I didn’t know you
couldn’t do that,” in regards to Sealey running
a weapon for personal use.
Once Brown was informed that the gun
was stolen, Brown said “I don’t know if he
bought the weapon or if [my] son’s friend has
it.”
Brown has since been released on a
$10,000 bond and placed on administrative
leave pending the outcome of the case in
DeKalb County Superior Court, according to
the DeKalb Sheriff’s Office.

DEKALB FREE PRESS Friday, August 19, 2016

local

Page 5

Concert Continued From Page 1A

Another concert at Lithonia Amphitheater is planned for Aug. 20 with performers Ronnie Laws, Lonnie Listen Smith
and Julie Dexter on the roster. Two more shows are being discussed for September.

Saxophonist Ralph Jones, center, was one of several musicians who performed at Jazz Under the Stars.

Jazz Under the Stars is the first of four concerts planned for the venue this year. In 2017,
Lary’s goal is to have 16 concerts lined up with a
focus on jazz, classic soul and comedy.
“That’s our niche, that’s what we are good at,”
said Lary.
The next show is scheduled for Aug. 20 when
A Night of Smooth Jazz is set to feature Ronnie
Laws, Lonnie Listen Smith with special guests
Jaman Lewis, Julie Dexter, Joey Sommerville
and others. Two other shows—one jazz, one
comedy—are being discussed for September.
Lary, who previously was involved in the Lithonia concerts, cited weak economics and needed
improvements to the venue for silencing the music. Through private investors, $20,000 has been
raised since last year and improvements such as
new vinyl over the stage and pavilion, painting
and repairs to the bathrooms have been made to
the 3,000-seat amphitheater, he said.
Lary said the focus for the remainder of this
year and next year will be on rebranding the
facility—previously known as Stewart Amphitheater—and finding talent and other promoters
interested in bringing shows to the venue. He
said he plans to produce some but not all of the
shows and looks forward to securing other promoters.
Promoters will pay a rental fee for use of the
facility with that money going to the city. The promoter takes any profit or loss.
Lary added no city or county funds are subsidizing the concerts.
Roger Young, chairman of the Lithonia
Downtown Development Authority, said relaunching entertainment at the outdoor venue has been
“something we have been working toward for
some time.” He said he’s hoping that the concerts will “reactivate” community activities in a
positive way.
Young said the concerts years ago brought
new people into Lithonia, citing people being attracted by renown groups such as The Temptations, which performed at the amphitheater in
2006.
Young said Lary was selected from a field
of three candidates and that the authority was
seeking someone with experience promoting
shows. Young added that he has high expectations for success this year and next year.
Lary has an extensive background in concert
promotion, serving in an executive and production role in some of DeKalb’s largest concerts.
He financed and was executive producer for the
Lithonia Jazz and R&B series at Lithonia Amphitheater. He brought world-renown talent to Lithonia from 2004 through 2008, including Melba
Moore, and Morris Day and The Time. He also
produced the only two concerts at the Stone
Mountain Tennis Center, which featured Roberta
Flack and Kem. Lary is also president of the
Stonecrest City Alliance, a group advocating for
the creation of the city of Stonecrest.
He said he hopes rebranding the venue will
lead to big changes for the community including making Lithonia the cultural center for east
DeKalb.
“We’re trying to bring back this area culturally,”
he said.
“We need some activities for the Stonecrest
corridor because Stonecrest may be a city soon,”
said Lary.

DEKALB FREE PRESS Friday, August 19 , 2016

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Page 6

Spirit of National Night Out needed more often
The sight of eight DeKalb
police vehicles lining a
street in my Stone Mountain
neighborhood was as startling
as the influx of officers—many in
fatigues and protective vests—
who poured into our community.
It might have been a disturbing
and fearsome sight had it not
been on the evening of National
Night Out.
Celebrated across the
country, National Night Out is
a coming together of people in
their neighborhoods with law
enforcement and other first
responders such as firefighters.
Events such as block parties,
parades and cookouts are held
combining an opportunity for
residents and those who protect

Gale Horton Gay
gale@dekalbchamp.com

and serve to meet and greet
each other in a fun atmosphere.
Some events include safety
demonstrations, exhibits and
more. The goal is to promote
safer communities by neighbors
getting to know each other as
well as interacting with police
officers, firefighters and other
first responders.
In my Water’s Edge
community, National Night Out

was celebrated with a lowcountry boil, which attracted a
hearty number of neighbors—as
free food always does—and
first responders as well as a few
candidates for public office.
It was good to see officers
and community members with
smiles on their faces rather than
the too-often grim expressions
viewed on news reports of tragic
events. For everyone it was a
relaxed and enjoyable night
as neighbors chatted with one
another—some meeting for the
first time, others reconnecting.
Over plates of shrimp, sausage,
potatoes and corn officers got
acquainted with residents and
I’m sure conversations both
personal and professional

ensued.
National Night Out,
which is in its 33rd year, is
described on its website as a
“community-building campaign
that promotes policecommunity partnerships and
neighborhood camaraderie to
make our neighborhoods safer,
better places to live.”
It certainly was where I live.
However, it’s unfortunate that
we only take the time to do this
once a year. As important as
our safety is and as valuable
as partnerships are, we really
should make more time to
cultivate and sustain these vital
relationships.

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DEKALB FREE PRESS Friday, August 19, 2016

Page 7

And here we are
Let me start by saying that
much of the doom and gloom I
am feeling about our fall presidential elections is well off set by
the changes at the primary and
runoff election choices made by
voters here in DeKalb County. I
believe that the coming team of
office-holders can begin to take
DeKalb back to its former days
of glory.
And now back to our depressing White House contest.
Though it is, of course, politically popular to blame the weakwilled leadership of the “do-nothing Congress” for much of the
anger on the GOP side, a real
understanding of our existing
system of checks and balances
shows that though the House
controls the budgeting reins, and
the Senate takes lead on presidential appointment confirmation
hearings—in the end, the signature of the nation’s chief executive is still required to give their
actions the force of law.
President Bill Clinton twice
rejected the concept and earlier
versions of “workfare reform,
proposed by then U.S. House
Speaker Newt Gingrich and
the GOP House. On their third
attempt, Clinton signed the bill,
and then took credit for it. “Workfare,” or its actual statutory
name, Temporary Assistance
for Needy Families (TANF), was
a multibillion rework of welfare
funding back to the states, tying
work, training and productivity requirements to receiving

‘One Man’s
Opinion’
Bill Crane

bill.csicrane@gmail.com

benefits. The program is not a
panacea for poverty, but TANF
has reduced the welfare rolls
by millions, found employment
for dozens of thousands and is
one of the few big-ticket federal
programs that actually costs less
now than it did 20 years ago.
Clinton similarly balked at the
line-item veto, which he did not
want his Republican successors to wield, and he vetoed the
veto. The GOP Congress over
rode the veto, passing this major enhancement in executive
branch power into law on Clinton’s watch.
Clinton used that veto pen
with great abandon until the first
court challenge made its way to
the Supreme Court, which found
this revision in the separation
of powers, to be unconstitutional. This is the way our separation of powers–three branches
of government and system of
checks and balances–is supposed to work.
Though we have increasingly
become an impatient fast-food
nation not willing to make the
painful sacrifices likely required
for more fundamental changes
in our federal government, Hollywood and literature have told us

time and again that one man (or
woman) can change everything.
However, while “only I can
solve these problems,” may be
attention getting and dramatic;
it’s not actually the way that our
republic functions.
The executive branch enforces and executes laws passed by
the legislative branch. Yes, there
has been power creep, and the
current occupant of 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue, faced with a
Congress which does not concur
with his world view, has attempted to govern by Executive Order.
Donald Trump, the entrepreneur, is among those crowing the loudest (though Cruz’s
version made more sense), that
among his first acts as president
will be to overturn dozens of
President Obama’s executive orders of questionable legal status.
And yet, the Trump campaign
and candidate seem more focused instead on delivering the
Tweet or absurd statement of
the day, causing more voters to
question both his temperament
and fitness for the job.
On the Hillary Clinton side,
a less than fired up Democratic
base has several structural advantages, and particularly an
edge in the Electoral College,
but the former Secretary of State
seems unable to get out of her
own way on the e-mail, honesty
and integrity issues dogging her
campaign since its beginning.
Both nominees have among
the highest voter negative rank-

ings in modern election history.
Trump’s gender gap is nearly
catastrophic. Among all women,
he is below 30 percent, offset in
part by his strong lead among
White males, but even among
GOP women, Trump’s numbers
are dropping.
Hillary Clinton is still benefitting from a slight bounce postconvention. Her campaign has
media buys already under way
in key battleground states; her
negative ranking is found in most
polls at around 43-45 percent.
Trump is dropping into the
high 30s, especially in samples
that include either or both of the
third-party candidate options.
We still have some time, the
debates and perhaps an October
surprise or two. Even though I
am fascinated by politics and
this race has been like no other
I can remember, I will be glad
when the day arrives that I can
early vote, and gladder still when
Wednesday, Nov. 9, arrives and
this one begins moving into the
history books.
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.

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We sincerely appreciate the
discussion surrounding this and any
issue of interest to DeKalb County.
The Champion was founded in 1991
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on all sides of an issue. We have no
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local

DEKALB FREE PRESS Friday, August 19, 2016 • Page 8

Robbery suspects sought in Decatur
by horace Holloman
horace@dekalbchamp.com

Decatur police are
asking residents to give up
their personal belongings
if confronted by a robber
after two teens were held at
gunpoint Aug. 4.
The girls, ages 15 and
16, told police they were
walking on Church Street at
10 p.m., near Forkner Drive
when they noticed two men
approaching them.
The men demanded
the teens give them their
wallets and phones while
one brandished a handgun.
According to Decatur
Community Information
Officer Jennifer Ross, the
victims refused to give up
their personal items.
“When the [suspects]
demanded their property,
they didn’t give it to them
and there was a weapon
introduced,” Ross said.
“If someone is armed or
demanding your property,
cooperate. Property can be
replaced, you cannot.”

Avondale Estates’
permitting concierge
coordinator leaves
city
by Carla Parker
carla@dekalbchamp.com
Avondale Estates’
first permitting concierge
coordinator Phil Howland
has left the city.
Howland, who was
hired in 2014, left to work
for Renewal Design-Build
in Decatur, according to
reports. As permitting
concierge coordinator,
Howland assisted permit
applicants, guided permit
applicants through the
permitting process and other
duties.
Before coming to
Avondale Estates, Howland
was the city administrator
of Lithonia for two years.
Howland worked for Pine
Lake where he served from
2003-2012 in several roles,
including city administrator,
public works director, acting
court clerk and zoning
administrator.
Howland was the
chief financial officer of
Homewright Inc. in Pine
Lake from 1991-2001.

According to Ross, the
girls began to yell and the
suspects ran.
“The armed suspect
pointed the handgun
toward them and again
demanded the wallet and
cell phone. The victims
began screaming at which
point both suspects fled on
foot southbound on Forkner
Drive. The victims fled
north on Church Street and
ran home,” said Ross in a
statement.
The incident occurred

as Decatur police were in
search of two Black male
teens who reportedly hours
earlier tried to rob two men
attempting to sell shoes
near Oakhurst Elementary.
Ross said the incidents,
although occurring in two
separate areas, might be
related.
“We won’t rule that out,”
Ross said.
According to reports,
one suspect is described as
a light-skinned Black male
approximately 17-19 years

old and roughly 5-foot-11.
He was last seen wearing
a black hooded sweatshirt,
blue jeans, white shoes
and armed with a black
handgun.
The other suspect is
described as being around
the same age with a
medium complexion and
overweight with short hair
wearing a red shirt.
“While it is scary to even
consider, it is important to
talk to teens about what to
do if they are confronted

with these types of
situations. Please stress
to them that no item is
worth your life,” Ross said.
“Stress being aware and
not distracted by things like
their phones, trusting their
instincts when something
feels wrong or they feel
unsafe and changing their
path and cooperating with
giving up their property if
confronted with a robbery.
The most important thing is
that they are safe.”

local

DEKALB FREE PRESS Friday, August 19, 2016 • Page 9

Brookhaven
approves amended
traffic calming plan
for neighborhood
by Carla Parker
carla@dekalbchamp.com

T

A boy helps Samuel Nicol, (age unknown) who suffers from river blindness, walk through the village of Gbonjeima, Sierra
Leone. The Task Force for Global Health is working with partners to eliminate river blindness by 2025. Photo by Olivier
Asselin, courtesy of the Global Network for Neglected Tropical Diseases.

Decatur non-profit receives
$2 million donation
Funds will be used
for larger Task Force
for Global Health
headquarters
by R. Scott Belzer
sbelzer@dekalbchamp.com
The Task Force for Global
Health, headquartered at 325
Swanton Way in Decatur, received
a $2 million donation Aug. 9
courtesy of the Carl N. Hilton
Foundation.
The Task Force for Global
health is an international nonprofit
seeking to improve health in the
world’s poorest communities.
According to its mission
statement, The Task Force’s
overall goal is to reduce vaccinepreventable diseases, tropical
diseases and improve overall
health systems. The organization
achieves this goal by partnering
with pharmaceutical companies
across the globe to distribute
medicine to people in need.
Specific diseases targeted by
The Task Force include blinding
trachoma, river blindness,
lymphatic filariasis, and intestinal

worms. According to its annual
report, medicines addressing
the four diseases have been
distributed to 151 countries through
donations from companies such
as Pfizer, Johnson & Johnson, the
Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation
as well as the Centers for Disease
Control and Prevention (CDC).
The Task Force for Global
Health is the first organization
in Georgia to receive the Hilton
Foundation’s Humanitarian Prize,
one of the largest humanitarian
prizes in the world. Created and
named for one of the founders of
Hilton Hotels, the prize is awarded
annually by an independent
international jury to an organization
“doing extraordinary work to
reduce human suffering.”
“We are deeply honored and
humbled to be the recipient of
the Conrad Hilton Humanitarian
Prize, the world’s largest award
of its kind,” said Dave Ross,
president and CEO of The Task
Force for Global Health. “We are
grateful to the Hilton Foundation
for advocating for humanitarian
issues around the world in such a
powerful way.”
Former president and CEO
Mark Rosenberg called the prize
an affirmation of the company’s
values.
“[The Task Force’s]
commitment to social justice and
health equity drives everything

we do,” Rosenberg said. “Behind
every decision we make, every
program we put out, we see the
faces of the people whom we
serve. This is the practice that
sustains us and reminds us of our
shared humanity.”
According to a statement from
The Task Force, the $2 million
will go toward the organization’s
capital campaign. According to
the organization’s website, the
campaign seeks to raise $15
million for the purchase and
renovation of 330 W. Ponce de
Leon Ave, a.k.a. the Clark Harrison
Building, in Decatur.
“The Task Force has
experienced unprecedented
growth in recent years due to the
success of its programs. As a
result, we have reached capacity in
our Decatur headquarters building
and need additional space,” the
Task Force states on its website.
“With triple the square footage of
our existing headquarters building,
it will allow us to increase the
impact of our existing programs
and launch an anticipated program
in noncommunicable diseases. We
are also exploring how we might
apply global health lessons to help
address public health issues of
local concern.”
The organization plans to close
on the property in late 2016.

he Brookhaven City Council
unanimously approved Aug.
9 a traffic calming plan for the
Brookhaven Heights community to
help reduce cut-through traffic and
speed.
Residents of Brookhaven
Heights asked the city to conduct
a traffic study to evaluate the
issue of cut-through traffic in the
neighborhood. According to city
officials, the study was done and
showed that there is an issue with
volume of cut through traffic along
Colonial Drive, Standard Drive and
Thornwell Drive.
The city proposed a plan that
includes partially closing access
from the neighborhood to and
from North Druid Hills Road at
Standard Drive, Thornwell Drive and
Oglethorpe Avenue.
A final petition was sent to the
neighborhood for final approval
of the traffic calming proposal
measures and 66.5 percent
of residents in the community
approved the plan, which met the
minimum of 65 percent approval
required.
However, after complaints from
some residents about some of the
partial closures, amendments were
made to the plan to further address
the issue. Councilman Bates
Mattison said the changes include
installing signs restricting drivers
from turning into the neighborhood
during morning and evening hours.
“The ‘no left turn’ sign is a
compromise that I feel is the best
solution to get us started toward
resolving this cut-through problem,”
Mattison said. “We all know the
partial closure at Standard and
Thornwell would’ve restricted traffic
significantly and prevented those
cars from coming in, but as an initial
step I believe that the wisest plan for
us is to try the signs first and see if
they work. If they do not work then
we’re going to look to move to the
next step, which maybe the original
plan that was presented to us by
Brookhaven Heights in our original
council meeting.”
The plan also includes more
speed humps and bump outs.
Mattison said the city will start with a
“baseline” traffic study.
“Before these plans are
implemented we’re going to do
a full traffic count for the entire
Brookhaven Heights area,” Mattison
said. “In addition, we’re going to

See Brookhaven on Page 10A

local

DEKALB FREE PRESS Friday, August 19, 2016 • Page 10

Newsweek names DeKalb schools among nation’s best
by R. Scott Belzer
sbelzer@dekalbchamp.com
Two schools in the
DeKalb County School District (DCSD) are among the
nation’s best according to a
ranking compiled by a national publication.
On Aug. 11, Newsweek
released its 2016 “America’s
Top High Schools” list, featuring the top 500 public high
school facilities in America.
DeKalb School of the Arts
(DSA) and Chamblee Charter
High School (CCHS) were
placed on the list for doing
“the best job of preparing students for college,” according
to Newsweek.
Newsweek’s requirements relied on six factors to
compile a score of 100: how
many students the school retains (10 percent), counselor
to student ratio (10 percent),
weighted SAT/ACT scores
(17.5 percent), weighted AP/
IB enrollment (17.5 percent),
graduation rate (20 percent)
and college enrollment rates
(25 percent).
The publication used
2012-2013 data, as it is “the
most recent reliable data
available in the National Center for Education Statistics
database.”
DSA ranked 177, the
highest in DeKalb County
and second in Georgia. Only
Northview High School in Buford (Fulton County) ranked
higher at 132. The two
schools were considered out
of 4,760 of 15,819 public high
schools in the United States.
Last year, DSA ranked
358 nationally and third in the
state.
DSA’s overall college
readiness score was listed
at 80.7. The score relied on
DSA’s average SAT score

DeKalb School of the Arts was
ranked 177 in the country by
Newsweek and second in the
state for college readiness.
Photo submitted.

Chamblee Charter High School
was ranked 431 in the country
by Newsweek and seventh in
the state for college readiness.
Photo submitted.

(1722) and average ACT
score (25) to create a SAT/
ACT composite (55.6). A similar method using the school’s
average AP score (76.2) and
average IB score (zero) was
used to create a dual enrollment composite (68.1).
Newsweek also measured DSA’s counselor to student ratio (1:358) and student
retention (0.72) to produce
an overall college readiness
score of 78.1. DSA’s graduation rate of 100 also accounts
for its high ranking.
DSA also ranked 97 for
schools considered to be
“beating the odds” while serving students at an economic
disadvantage.
DSA principal Susan
McCauley said the school’s
success can be attributed
to the student’s magnet program and correlation to the
arts. McCauley also lauded
the school’s teaching staff—
whom she called masters of
the arts—and an extremely
supportive parental base.
“The students who come
here want to be here every
day and learn,” McCauley
said “They’re committed
to their academics as well
as their art. If you look at
numbers for the nation, you
can see how well students
involved in the arts produce

academically.”
McCauley said DSA’s
challenges come from students performing a balancing act each day. Students
attending the school are
expected to devote equal
energy to eight classes and
keep up with performance
schedules.
McCauley said, through
monitoring DSA student
growth, students already performing at the highest level
will not have the chance to
rest on their laurels.
“We have to make sure
we’re growing students,” McCauley said. “We make sure
underperforming students improve to middle performance,
that middle performances
move to top areas, and top
area students continue to
improve. We never rest on
our laurels; we celebrate and
see what we need to do to
improve.”
McCauley credited the
district for being supportive
of the arts and ensuring students have access to magnet
programs.
“Having a magnet school
makes for a great concentration of passionate students,”
McCauley said. “For national
rankings, if you look at the
number of schools with magnet or arts in the title, it will

give you a really big clue
about their success.”
Admittance to DSA is
based on an application and
audition process. Students
must audition in two arts
areas as well as have a minimum 3.0 GPA.
CCHS ranked 431 with
an overall college readiness
score of 74.2. The school’s
average SAT score (1663)
and average ACT score (25)
account for a composite
score of 53.1. CCHS’s average AP score (74) and average IB score (0) account for
its composite score of 66.0.
CCHS’s rank was also
determined by the school’s
retention rate (0.70), counselor to student ratio (1:325)
and graduation rate (93.1).
Norman Sauce III, principal at CCHS, attributes the
school’s success to its diversity, extracurricular activities
and community support.
According to Sauce, CCHS
boasts more than 75 campus
organizations, teams and
associations made possible
through surrounding businesses, parents and volunteers.
As with DSA, CCHS
magnet students from
throughout DeKalb County
are chosen based on academic merit through a lottery
system. CCHS’s charter
system also allows students
to apply without academic
criteria. The end result is a
diverse group of students
ready, willing and able to handle CCHS’s academic rigor,
according to Sauce.
“Chamblee is a place
where you find no barrier is
too great or challenge too
daunting. It’s a wonderfully
diverse community and a
very successful community—
we draw students from and

to Chamblee and we’re very
proud of that,” Sauce said.
“The students who come
here [from throughout DeKalb
County] are all motivation and
desire. We attract families
and students who want to be
here.”
Sauce said CCHS’s success has increased. He said
more than 1,100 AP exams
in 25 subjects were taken
last year with a passing rate
of 77 percent, an improvement upon Newsweek’s 2012
data set. Similarly, last year,
CCHS’s German program
was one of 50 worldwide to
be invited to a summit about
program outcomes.
Sauce said that students
volunteer thousands of hours
to community service while
also achieving in the classroom.
“We’re building great
leadership and acumen for
service,” he said.
Sauce said challenges
for CCHS involve acclimating
freshmen to higher academic
standards and working with a
school population where twothirds of the students live in
other cities.
According to Sauce,
CCHS will build on its success by continuing to integrate a STEM (science,
technology, engineering and
mathematics) curriculum,
implementing a tricameral
governing body made up of
teachers, parents and students, as well as participating
in DeKalb County’s redistricting plan, which will bring 232
new students to CCHS.
Both DSA and CCHS
also made US News & World
Report’s list of best high
schools in the state, ranking
third and 21st, respectively.

BROOKHAVEN Continued From Page 9A
add the entry points to Brookhaven
Fields.”
The city will do another traffic
count in six months to monitor
progress.
“A lot of thought and effort have
gone into this process to try to
come up with a reasonable solution
for a neighborhood,” Mattison said.
“While I very much appreciate
and respect the opinions of the
original proposal, we as council
also have to take in consideration
the best interest of the entire city
of Brookhaven, even outside of
Brookhaven Heights.”
Resident Paul Malita said he

was opposed to the original plan
because he did not think it was fair
for the neighborhood.
“I’m glad to see that we’re going
to try a modified plan because the
original plan was deeply flawed,”
he said. “It still has some significant
flaws in it, and those are so
significant that it’s going to present
a problem in the future even if we
do this.”
Malita said installation of a
“no turn” will cause motorist to
find other ways to cut through the
neighborhoods and cause more
backups.
“I don’t think we’re solving a

problem,” he said. “This may be
a Band Aid but the city is going to
have to address the major problems
on Peachtree Road, North Druid
Hills Road and Brairwood Road.”
Resident Conni Todd said she
is concerned with what is in the
city’s best interest.
“Regardless of what side you
sit on, whether you are pro the
initial suggested reroute or not—
what’s right for our community?,”
Todd said. “What’s right for our
children, what’s right for our home
value, what’s right for policing our
community? I don’t believe that it’s
enough to say, ‘Oh, we’ll put a Band

Aid fix on it.’ We all probably agree
that it’s not going to work. So why
not come up with a real solution
that the city is actually getting
behind?
“Give us a solution that really
works,” Todd added. “There is a
better solution, and what we have
right here is not it.”
Mattison said all of the plans
that will be six-month plans.
“This is a problem that we’re
going to solve,” he said. “We’re
going to keep working on this until
we solve it. But first we’re going
to start with an implementation of
something to see if it works or not.”

local

DEKALB FREE PRESS Friday, August 19, 2016 • Page 11

WeeKinPICTURES

The Atlanta BBQ Festival at Perimeter Mall in Dunwoody featured a pig roasted in a taxi cab. Photo Travis Hudgons.

Some members of the new board of directors of the Rotary Club of Stone Mountain
include from left (front row) Al Lipphardt, Scott McEvoy, DeNorris Heard, Hikie Allen and
Jerry Crane. (back row) Lizbeth Dison, Durl Jensen, Gillian Leggett, Margie Kersey and
Donna Jensen. Photo provided by L.A. Dison

23

The Doraville Police Department held a K9 training session early in August,
teaching entry, investigating and detaining skills. Photo submitted.

PHOTOS BROUGHT TO YOU BY DCTV
DCTV Channel 23
@DCTVChannel23

Get your front row seat to all things DeKalb County
through your EMMY Award-winning station

DeKalb County Gov
Ustream.tv/channle/DCTV-Channel-23
VISIT US AT WWW.DCTVChannel23.tv

E-mail us at DCTV@DeKalbCountyGA.gov

education

DEKALB FREE PRESS Friday, August 19, 2016 • Page 12

Sagamore Hills Elementary principal Judy
Taylor explained how STEM is leading the
way in science, technology, engineering and
mathematics (STEM).

Students at Sagamore Hills Elementary engage with computer application and design on a daily basis as the only
school in Georgia with dual STEM accreditation. Photos by R. Scott Belzer.

DeKalb County Superintendent Stephen Green
toured seven schools to celebrate the first
day of school for the 2016-2017 school year,
announcing goals for the new year in the
process.

Sagamore Hills leads district into new year
DeKalb superintendent
promises modern,
STEM-focused custom
curriculum by March
by R. Scott Belzer
sbelzer@dekalbchamp.com
Superintendent Stephen Green and DeKalb
County School District (DCSD) staff hosted backto-school press conferences at Sagamore Hills
Elementary on Aug. 8, the first day of the 20162017 school year.
Green commended the school, stating
that its science, technology, engineering and
mathematics (STEM) focus is a blueprint for all
district schools, and announced other districtwide goals for the remainder of the school year,
including designing a DeKalb County-focused
curriculum.
Sagamore Hills is the only school in Georgia
with dual STEM certification, being recognized
nationally and internationally by the Georgia
Department of Education and accreditation
agency AdvancED, respectively.
“Sagamore Hills is a STEM school, meaning
[the subjects] are pervasive,” said principal Julie
Taylor. “Our students are immersed in STEM
education as well as our instructors. STEM is
what we do.”
Taylor said a typical day for students
at Sagamore Hills involved examining real
world issues, designing efficient solutions and

applying those solutions to available technology.
An example used by Taylor and technology
teacher Will Barnes involved studying water
conservation and creating a low-flow showerhead
with a 3D printer.
“Along the way, our teachers and students
are working alongside scientists and engineers
in the community; they’re learning about STEM
careers and learning about STEM pathways,”
Taylor said. “Over half of our students are
traditionally underrepresented in STEM careers.
As a learning community, we have made the
commitment to offer a quality STEM program to
spark the interest and love of STEM subjects.”
In Sagamore Hills classrooms, it is not
unusual to see students sitting at computers
instead of desks. Instead of textbooks, they
read wikipages and encyclopedias written by
education professionals. While they do turn
in paperwork, they also spend time designing
houses, machines and other projects via a
desktop computer.
Taylor said obtaining dual certification has

taken approximately four years. She said the
entire school community—including parents
and stakeholders—decided to pursue dual
certification due in part to the school’s proximity
to Georgia Tech, Georgia State University,
Mercer, Emory and the Centers for Disease
Control and Prevention (CDC).
“We have so many parents and community
members involved with these institutions,” Taylor
said. “They’re already involved in our school in
enriching the curriculum. It was a great fit for this
school.”
Green said Sagamore Hills students do not
question the STEM curriculum because of its
obvious relevance to the world at-large. He said
the school’s overall platform will be applied to the
rest of the district as soon as possible.
“Sagamore Hills is a beacon for our school
district in terms of STEM,” Green said. “We are
internationally known as a district for our STEM
program and Sagamore Hills is leading the way.
Don’t let what’s here stay here.”
Green said about seven schools are on the
brink of obtaining dual certification. While he
listed STEM certification as a top priority for
the district, other goals include implementing a
revised student code of conduct and eliminating
disproportionality, fostering transparency and
customer service, and writing a DeKalb County
curriculum.
Green said teachers and staff have been
asked to design a custom, project-based, 21stcentury-appropriate, STEM-focused curriculum.
“We are in the process of designing, hiring
teachers and paying them well to design our own
curriculum,” Green said. “We have not had—for
many years—a bona fide curriculum that is board
approved. We need to have one, and we are on
course in having one by March 2017.”

education

DEKALB FREE PRESS Friday, August 19, 2016 • Page 13

Decatur school board responds to dyslexia concerns

by R. Scott Belzer
sbelzer@dekalbchamp.com
On Aug. 9, The City Schools of
Decatur (CSD) board of education
considered addressing the issue of
dyslexia following a listening and
work session on Aug. 2
The Aug. 2 session was called
because of the high number of CSD
parents who have contacted board
members, administration and staff
regarding their dyslexic children’s
experience in the district. The
session attracted more than 100
concerned parents and lasted until
around midnight.
Parents informed the board
that dyslexia affects one in five
children throughout the district
who experience difficulty reading,
writing, mismatching letters and
numbers, and confusion about
directions. Symptoms not caught by
the third grade are often harder to
repair, according to experts.
The CSD board responded to
many of these concerns on Aug. 9.
Superintendent David Dude
said board members Annie Caiola,
Lewis Jones, Bernadette Seals,
Garrett Goebel and Tasha White
submitted 89 questions to his staff
following the work session and
that his staff is working diligently to
answer them.
“My team has done an
incredible amount of work in pulling
information to address them,” Dude
said. “It’s not ready in a form I’m
ready to put out. We have gathered
[lots] of information but we want to
put it in a digestible format for the
public.”
Dude said he has met with
administrators, teachers, parents,
child psychologists and OrtonGillingham tutors since the Aug.
2 meeting. He said he has also
scheduled a meeting with the
Schenck School’s executive
director for advisement.
The Schenk School, a private
institution located in northwest
Atlanta, specializes in teaching
dyslexic children through the OrtonGillingham method.
In addition, Dude said two
students from every grade
level who are considered
“underachieving” and not served
by a school program will be
observed throughout the school
year to seek solutions.
“It’s not specific to dyslexic
students, but given the statistics
we have heard, there are probably
some dyslexic students in that
group,” Dude said.
Board member White said she
worries about parents and students
who are not aware they may be
affected by dyslexia. She said she
also worries about the families

City Schools of Decatur’s board of education responded to an Aug. 2 work session regarding dyslexia on Aug. 9. Photo by
Travis Hudgons.

are going to push hard and keep at
it until they figure it out; those are
the kids who are going to succeed,”
Jones said. “But the majority of
students don’t have that. That’s a
life that’s going to go unfulfilled. The
school can fill some of that gap.
That’s the way I would approach
the issue of dyslexia.”
Winnona Park Elementary
principal Greg Wiseman urged the
board not to place more burdens on
teachers. He said he empathizes
with many statements during Aug.
2’s listening session but does not
want teachers to make diagnoses.
“There were statements
I questioned and statements
I completely disagreed with,”
Wiseman said. “We ask so much
of our teachers today. The levels
Superintendent David Dude said he will
of planning, instruction and
meet with experts on dyslexia and local
engagement are extremely high in
solutions before presenting a formal
solution to the board of education. Photo our classrooms. It’s not appropriate
by R. Scott Belzer
to place the burden of diagnosing
on top of everything else.”
Wiseman said teachers and
without the means to address the
principals do not tell parents about
disability.
“My heart leans with the families suspicions regarding dyslexia,
who cannot do the extra, the private anxiety, autism and beyond.
“Heck, I don’t even want our
this and the private that,” White
teachers to tell parents they think
said. “I’m looking forward to having
a child is gifted,” Wiseman said.
more discussions on how we as
“This conservative approach is not
a board and district can address
a denial that dyslexia exists.”
those needs. I want to know what
Similarly, board member Goebel
we’re doing already and where
said he has difficulty seeing how
there is room to improve.”
the board can address parents’
Board member Jones said it
concerns with policy that serves
was the system’s responsibility to
every student. He said dyslexia
put policies in place to fill certain
is a gray area that has yet to be
achievement gaps and overcome
navigated by public education.
obstacles.
“If we’re doing right by one
“Many kids have families who

group of kids, we need to do right
by all,” Goebel said. “You don’t
expect schools to perform surgery
on a student with a broken leg. A
learning disability in reading is a bit
of a gray area and I’m not clear on
where the solution is in the domain
of the public education system.”
Board chairman Caiola
disagreed with Goebel. She said
the district needed to “take a
deeper dive” into the issue and lead
the community to a solution.
“If you see something, you
should say something,” Caiola
said. “If a student is struggling and
[a teacher] suspects something,
they should say something. We
have the resources internally.
I’m not interested in focusing
this discussion on what’s legally
required—what’s legally required
is a minimal standard, and meeting
minimal standards is not the
Decatur way.”
Caiola proposed putting
temporary measures in place—
such as changing written student
applications to verbal applications
or pulling dyslexic students out of
foreign language classes until they
master English—before seeking
something permanent. She urged
parents to address board members
directly with any additional
concerns regarding CSD students.
“A listening session is not the
only way a board can be heard,”
Caiola said. “If there’s something
[people in the community] haven’t
been heard on, just call us. Email
us.”

Business

DEKALB FREE PRESS Friday, August 19, 2016 • Page 14

Restaurant offers farm-to-table meals
by Kathy Mitchell

Hudson Rouse is a farmer and
a chef. Both occupations are central
to the venture he and his wife,
Kathryn Fitzgerald Rouse, started
recently. The couple in March
opened Rising Son Restaurant,
which features freshly prepared
menu items that use locally grown
ingredients.
“We use some items from our
own land and some from other local
growers,” explained Kathryn Rouse,
noting that she and her husband
grow produce in East Atlanta, Stone
Mountain and Rockdale County.
“We’re also fortunate that we’re
so close to the DeKalb Farmers
Market,” she said of the restaurant
located in the heart of downtown
Avondale Estates.
Situated in the space that until
early 2016 was The Bishop, Rising
Son opened quickly after owners
of the Tutor-style building approved
them as tenants. “There were three
other potential tenants interested
in the space, but they chose us,”
Kathryn recalled. “The space
already was a restaurant so we just
did some painting and other minor
improvement and were ready to

open.”
She said she had worked in
the restaurant industry before but
is operating her own business for
the first time. Her husband, she
added, has previous experience as
a business owner. “We were both
working for other people when we
married last year, but we decided
that we wanted our own business.”
The specialty of the house
is all natural soda made by the
owners. “They’re made with natural
ingredients, so flavors vary with the
season. Right now, Elberta peaches
are in season,” Kathryn explained.
Patrons also may find such flavors
as apricot mint, tarragon lime,
lavender lemon and cucumber lime.
She said the sodas have some
natural sugar, “but less than you find
in commercial sodas.”
The Rouses say Avondale
Estates is an ideal spot for their
restaurant because fresh, locally
produced food is popular in the
area. “People in Avondale Estates,
Decatur, and other communities
around here really appreciate the
quality and the fact that buying
from our neighbors supports local
businesses and is good for the
environment.”

The name Rising Son was
chosen to suggest that farmers
rise with the sun, Kathryn said.
“We made it ‘son’ instead of ‘sun’
to suggest the family connection.
People sometimes ask whether
there is a religious implication. No,
that’s not what we intended.”
Kathryn, who grew up in Stone
Mountain, said she has seen
Avondale Estates—like many
communities—have ups and downs.
“Right now, it really appears to be
on an upswing. We’re seeing a lot
of good things happening here,” she
noted.
“We love that there are so many
small privately owned businesses
here. This is a community where
people truly support one another.
Our business neighbors have been
great,” Kathryn said, noting that the
walls currently display paintings by a
local artist she has known since high
school. Ultimately, she said, they
plan to have a mural painted on the
main wall, “but right now, I am proud
to show my friend’s paintings. I really
love her work.”
She said business has been
brisk in the few weeks Rising Son
has been open with customers
welcoming them as new neighbors.

“We serve coffee in an eclectic
collection of mugs and people even
bring mugs to add to the group.
Someone brought us fresh figs from
their tree.
“People tell us they have missed
having a good breakfast place.
Hudson makes amazing biscuits. I
always recommend that people try
the biscuits,” she said. The breakfast
menu goes beyond standard bacon
and eggs with such offerings as fried
trout and grits, wild Georgia shrimp
and grits, crispy breakfast dumplings
and corn bacon cheddar waffles.
“At lunch, we become a meatand-three restaurant,” she said,
noting that customers can order
a meat with one, two or three
sides. She said the fried chicken is
especially popular, adding that the
menu changes every day.
The restaurant currently is open
for breakfast and lunch with brunch
served on Saturdays and Sundays.
but the owners plan to start serving
dinner soon.
Despite some challenges,
Kathryn said running the business
is fun. The sign outside, she noted,
summarizes her goal: “Manifest
destiny while not pulling your hair
out!”

Classified

DEKALB FREE PRESS Friday, August 19, 2016 • Page 15

The

Champion

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The Champion is not responsible for any damages resulting from advertisements. All sales final.

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Rates: $30.00 for up to 40 words, each additional word $0.60. All ads are prepaid! All major credit cards accepted!

Ads due by Friday - Noon for next publication date.
DISCLAIMER: We do not knowingly accept advertisements that discriminate, or intend to discriminate, on any illegal basis. Nor do we knowingly accept employment advertisements that are not
bona-fide job offers. All real estate advertisements are subject to the fair housing act and we do not accept advertising that is in violation of the law. The law prohibits discrimination based on color,
religion, sex, national origin, handicap or familial status.

sports

DEKALB FREE PRESS Friday, August 19, 2016 • Page 16

Cedar Grove offensive linemen Justin Shaffer, left, and Netori Johnson were selected to the preseason all-state team. Photo by Travis Hudgons

DeKalb football players named preseason all-state
by Carla Parker
carla@dekalbchamp.com
Several DeKalb County
high school football players are
considered among the best players
in their prospective classifications
after being named to preseason allstate teams.
Georgia High School Football
Daily has released the preseason
all-state teams for all seven
classifications; 10 players from
DeKalb public and private school
teams were selected to All-state
teams.
In Class AAA, Cedar Grove
offensive linemen Netori Johnson
and Justin Shaffer, defensive back
Tre Shaw and Towers defensive
lineman Devonte Wyatt were
selected to the preseason all-state
team.

Johnson and Shaffer, who have
both committed to the University
of Georgia, will anchor the Cedar
Grove Saints offensive line as
they compete for a state title. Both
players are predicted to play on the
defensive line too. Last season,
Johnson had 20 tackles, eight for a
loss, and Shaffer accumulated 20
tackles and seven for a loss.
Shaw, a North Carolina commit,
is expected to have an impact on the
Saints’ defense and offense again
this season. On defense, Shaw had
67 tackles, one sack, one tackle for
a loss, one interception, one fumble
caused and one fumble recovery
last season. On offense, he rushed
for 767 yards rushing and scored 10
touchdowns.
Wyatt’s performance on Towers’
defensive line last season earned
him a spot on the all-state team.

The Georgia commit had 52 total
tackles, including seven sacks and
10 tackles for a loss last season.
St. Pius X has two players who
made the Class AAAA preseason
all-state team. Running back and
defensive back Grant Holloman
was named to the offensive team,
and defensive end London Lewis
made the defensive squad.
Holloman rushed for 749 yards
and scored 10 touchdowns last
season for the Golden Lions. He had
33 tackles, including two for a loss
on defense. Lewis had 22 tackles,
two fumble recoveries, one caused
fumble and a safety last season.
Decatur’s Terrill Hall is the lone
DeKalb representative on the Class
AAAAA preseason all-state team.
Hall, who plays wide receiver and
strong safety, made the all-state
team as a defensive back. He has

offers from 10 schools, including
Appalachian State, Cincinnati,
Georgia Southern and Georgia
State.
Stephenson and Tucker each
had players to make the Class
AAAAAA preseason all-state team.
Stephenson defensive lineman
Aaron Sterling and defensive back
Carlito Gonzales were selected,
as well as Tucker offensive lineman
Dylan Wonnum.
Sterling, an Alabama commit,
was dominate on the Jaguars’
defensive line last season with
23.5 sacks and 34 tackles for a
loss. Gonzales had 55 tackles,
three fumbles caused and two pass
breakups last season.
Wonnum was a force on the
Tigers’ offensive line that led to
309 rushing yards per game last
season.

sports

DEKALB FREE PRESS Friday, August 19, 2016 • Page 17

Dunwoody won its second consecutive DeKalb County School District Spikefest title. Photos by Carla Parker

Dunwoody wins
another Spikefest
by Carla Parker
carla@dekalbchamp.com
The Dunwoody Lady Wildcats are DeKalb County
School District Spikefest champions again after a 2-0 win
over Chamblee on Aug. 13.
Dunwoody won the first set 25-21 and dominated the
second set 25-17 to win its second consecutive Spikefest
title. Dunwoody coach Heidi Forth, who is in her first
year with the program, said it was amazing to see her
players capture the tournament title.
“It’s my first year with the program so I’m just
enjoying watching these girls do their thing,” Forth said.
“Everybody is jelling. It’s a great tournament—to stay in
the area and play with these teams is really fun as well.”
The Lady Wildcats are looking to have another run
in the playoffs in a new region (Region 7-AAAAAA) after
having three consecutive playoff appearances in Class
AAAAA. Forth said she expects to continue the success
of the program with the help of the seniors.
“I’m just getting to know this team, but we’re counting
this year on our seniors to show a ton of leadership,” she
said. “We’re lucky that we have a lot of depth. We have
girls that have been playing volleyball for a really long
time. We may make adjustments throughout the season,
but right now we’re in a good place. It’s working.”
Forth said the Spikefest win will give the Lady
Wildcats momentum as they continue in their season.
“Any level of competition is very useful and we’re
just going to continue to build and we appreciate the
opportunity to play in an important tournament,” Forth
said.

Two Dunwoody players block a ball spiked by Chamblee’s Kyla Manning.

sports

DEKALB FREE PRESS Friday, August 19, 2016 • Page 18

MLK coach Nicolas Kashama addresses his team during a timeout. Photos by Carla Parker

MLK takes down Redan in scrimmage
by Carla Parker
carla@dekalbchamp.com
DeKalb County football
coaches got an opportunity to
evaluate their teams a week before
the season through scrimmage
games Aug. 11-13.
The M.L. King Lions and the
Redan Raiders went at it Aug. 13
at Godfrey Stadium with the Lions
coming out on top 27-13.
The Raiders got on the
scoreboard first with a rushing
touchdown by running back Cori
Pritchett, giving the Raiders a
6-0 lead in the first quarter after
missing the extra point. MLK
responded with a touchdown
pass from quarterback Brandon
Dickerson to wide receiver
Hunter Brown. An extra point
gave the Lions a 7-6 lead.
Redan took the lead back
in the second quarter on a
touchdown pass from quarterback
Xavier Dennis to wide receiver
Deaundre Tolan, giving the
Raiders a 13-7 lead. Redan could
not score the remainder of the
game and the Lions went on a
20-0 run.
The Lions’ 20 points came
on three rushing touchdowns
by Jaylen Williams, Marcellus
Lockett and Mario Benton.
M.L.King will open the regular
season Aug. 19 against Columbia
at Godfrey Stadium. Redan
will open its 2016 season Aug.
20 at Godfrey Stadium against
Southwest DeKalb.

MLK running back Jaelon Thomas runs up field behind his blockers.

Redan running back Cori Pritchett is tackled by a host of Lions as
he scores a touchdown.

MLK wide receiver Hunter Brown catches a touchdown
pass in the back corner of the end zone.

sports

DEKALB FREE PRESS Friday, August 19, 2016 • Page 19

SWD names interim
football coach
by Carla Parker
carla@dekalbchamp.com

Fletcher Salter has been appointed interim coach for
the Southwest DeKalb High School football team following
the death of head coach Michael Tanks, the DeKalb County
School District announced Aug. 12.
Salter, who coached under Tanks and former head coach
Buck Godfrey, is a retired educator.
Salter is a graduate of Carver High School in
Montgomery, Ala., and received degrees from Alabama State
University and Cambridge University. He has taught at five
schools in DeKalb and has coached basketball, baseball and
football at various schools in the county.
“Coach Salter will provide excellent leadership for the
Southwest DeKalb football program as we enter into this
season,” Superintendent Dr. R. Stephen Green said in a
released statement. “We will be seeking a new coach in
January 2017.”
Tanks died Aug. 3 of complications related to a stroke he
suffered at his home.
“Coach Tanks, a former [Southwest DeKalb] student, was
a valuable part of the faculty and staff,” Southwest DeKalb
Principal Dr. Thomas Glanton said. “His passing has
devastated our school community and he will be missed.”

Photo by Travis Hudgons

local

DEKALB FREE PRESS Friday, August 19, 2016 • Page 20

Teens avoid bullets after botched shoe sale
by Horace Holloman
horace@dekalbchamp.com

Decatur police are in search
of two Black teens involved in a
shooting after a botched shoe sale.
On Aug. 4, two men were
attempting to sell two pair of shoes
through an online transaction.
The young men reportedly met
the potential buyers behind Oakhurst
Elementary after 6 p.m., but were
worried the transaction was not
legitimate and left, police said.
The suspects then contacted the
sellers again and requested that they
return to complete the transaction.
When the sellers returned, they
met with one potential customer
who said he did not have enough
money to pay the agreed upon
price. The second suspect appeared
from behind the school and fired a
gunshot toward the sellers.
According to reports, the sellers
were not injured in the incident.
The Aug. 4 shooting is indicative
of the online shoe-selling industry,
said one DeKalb resident.
Roy Coleman, 39, of DeKalb
County said he’s been selling
merchandise online for nearly a
decade.
Coleman said teens are willing to

do anything to acquire shoes.
“They go [crazy] for some reason
over the whole tennis shoe thing.
It’s related to peer pressure and the
marketing of these shoes. [Peer
pressure] has always been around,
but now it’s not what it used to be,”
said Coleman, father of a 21-yearold daughter. “To tell the truth, I don’t
generally sell to most teenagers.”
Coleman said he’s developed
strict selling guidelines over the years
and has not had any issues in his
10 years of selling products online.
He said public places monitored by
police are the best areas to meet.
After the shooting, the Decatur
police department said in a
statement, “Please exercise extreme
caution when arranging to meet to
conduct purchases made through
online websites and [applications].
The front lobby of the Decatur Police
Department is open 24 hours a day
and can easily be used as a meeting
place. If a seller refuses to meet at
a police department, you may want
to avoid making the purchase. Trust
your instincts and back out of any
meeting or transaction where you
feel suspicious or unsafe.”
Coleman, who is currently shoes
on Craigslist, said the questions
potential customers ask can be a

“red flag” in determining if meeting for
a transaction is safe or not.
“Most serious buyers have their
phone up and Internet up to take a
look at your product. They also go
into detail about the product and ask
a lot of questions,” Coleman said. “If
someone doesn’t ask questions, or
they constantly haggle on the price,
then I usually don’t bother.”
According to reports, one
suspect in the shooting is described

as a Black man in his teens or
early 20s with a slender build. He’s
approximately 5-foot-6 and was last
seen wearing dark shorts and Nike
shoes.
The other suspect is
approximately 6-feet tall, according
to police, with a stocky build. He was
wearing a black hooded sweatshirt
and was armed with a black
handgun.

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donated by our customers
and associates in 2016
Thank you to those who donated in our stores
this spring to help save and improve children’s lives.
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