the DeKalb FRIDAY, MAY 19, 2017 • VOL. 20, NO. 7 • FREE

Serving East Atlanta, Avondale Estates, Brookhaven, Chamblee, Clarkston, Decatur, Doraville, Dunwoody, Lithonia, Pine Lake, Stone Mountain, Stonecrest and Tucker • A PUBLICATION OF ACE III COMMUNICATIONS

Oprah: “Feel everything with love”
Oprah Winfrey advises Agnes Scott grads to “constructively engage” for success
by R. Scott Belzer

“I want you to work, in your
own way, to change the world
in respectful conversations
with others at a rate and
rhythm that’s in tune with the
source from which you have in
common—your truth. I want you
to enter every situation aware of
its context, open to hear the truth
of others, and most importantly,
open to allowing the process of
changing the world change you.”
These are the words of
media icon, world-renowned
philanthropist and entrepreneur
Oprah Winfrey, who spoke at
Agnes Scott College—located
at 141 E. College Avenue
in Decatur—on May 13 as
the private college’s 2017
commencement speaker.
Winfrey challenged Oprah Winfrey spoke at Agnes Scott College’s 2017 commencement ceremony to an audience of thousands. Photo by
Donna Seay
graduates to lead lives filled
with compassion, constructive
engagement and service, to remain compassionate, the Winfrey said it is not parts of completing them, are how to
resulting in legacies of love. struggle to remain committed, one’s life that make a difference, make a difference in the world.
“The world needs you right the struggle to remain but one’s whole life. She said “When I was about 30 years
now—the struggle is real right constructively engaged—but I’m actions and interactions, as
now,” Winfrey said. “The struggle betting on you.” well as how one goes about See Oprah on page 5

Local woman copes with mental
illness through fashion
by Horace Holloman of dissociative identity disorder, formerly known as multiple
personality disorder.
At an early age, Avondale “What I’ve learned is that
Estates resident Elisabeth when you can’t cope with reality,
Cuttino-Vereen, 27, knew you have these people in your
something was wrong. She kept head that are called your alters. It
hearing voices inside her head. helps people cope with whatever
Around age 8, Cuttino-Vereen traumatic event they’ve gone
said she would hear multiple through,” Cuttino-Vereen said.
voices in her head telling her to Cuttino-Vereen said she was
do things. These voices were later
known as her “alters,” a symptom See Fashion on page 5 Elisabeth Cuttino-Vereen uses fashion and social media to help cope with her
mental illness.

Visit for local, real DeKalb County news. @DeKalbChampNews
LOCAL DEKALB FREE PRESS Friday, May 19, 2017 • Page 2

On May 5, hundreds from the Boys to Men Christian Mentors and DeKalb County church community gathered to celebrate a year of accomplishments.

Boys to Men Christian Mentors celebrate, award
scholarships at 20th banquet
program director at Georgia Piedmont Technical to remain humble, never forget what they are fighting
by R. Scott Belzer College, advised those gathered to “suit up, squad up, for, never take negativity personally, recall past square up and stay up” when facing problems. victories and remember to be themselves
According to Johnson, suiting up entails preparing. “The one thing God needs from all of us, to pull
This involves identifying a problem, identifying the off the plan that he’s started within us, is the work,
For three hours on May 5, a ballroom at the
environment, and identifying how to solve a problem, effort and willingness to fight the good fight,” Hooper
DoubleTree by Hilton in Tucker became groud-zero
he said. Johnson specifically identified a health scare said. “To quote Frederick Douglass, ‘If there is no
for celebration, as Boys to Men Christian Mentors
and fighting his own impulses. struggle, there is no progress.’ God is willing to fulfill
celebrated its 20th annual scholarship banquet.
Johnson said squadding up involves picking the all of our expectations, but he’s going to require our
Each year, officials from Boys to Men Christian
right teammates. He said young men must be wary cooperation, our sacrifice, many disappointments,
Mentors pair at-risk youth with leaders in the
of who they surround themselvs with, who they look pain, and a fight.”
Christian community. The goal is to provide coaching,
up to and who to admire. Johnson said this included Knowles, a Georgia Tech graduate now working in
guidance, teaching, friendship and training from
God, at least one mentor and people who fit into any sales, detailed “the longest one minute and 40 seconds
“godly men” to boys ages 8 to 18.
current situation, which changes. of [his] life” in the boxing ring to demonstrate three
Two passages from the Bible often quoted in the
For Johnson, squaring up involves having the points of advice: wear the armor of God and know
ministry are Proverbs 23:7: “As a man thinketh in his
courage and willingness to show up to any situation, they cannot be hurt, always ask the right questions
heart, so is he,” and Proverbs 27:17: “As iron sharpen
confrontation or need. In the same way, Johnson said and don’t miss opportunities presented by God.
iron, so one person sharpen another.”
staying up involves adapting to situations that may “We have to realize that one step in the right
On May 5, hundreds from the DeKalb County
not be favorable. direction is not enough,” Knowles said. “If we don’t
church community gathered to celebrate a year of
“The theme for this banquet has been ‘Fight the hold ourselves to a higher standard, how can we
accomplishments from participants—also known as
good fight’ since its inception,” Jones said. “We’re all live a life of prosperity? Don’t just reach the bar—be
protégés—Kristian Bell, Kyle Bell, Julano McLeod,
going to fight at some point in our lives. As we fight, competitive. What’s going to win you the fight? It’s the
Jabari Crosby, Brandon Davis, Dasani Crawford
because we have to fight, we have to make sure we mentality, it’s how you think.”
and Torry Thompson, who each received scholarship
have a plan or strategy. Your most common adversary Each of the protégés as well as the speakers
is yourself.” received scholarship funds of varying amounts.
The event also included words from past program
Hooper, a senior software developer at Chick-fil-A For more information, visit www.
graduates Marcus Johnson Jr., Errol Hooper Jr., and
and STEAM nonprofit organizer, continued the theme
James Knowles III.
of winning the fight within. He advised the protégés
Johnson, a local author who serves as the English

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LOCAL DEKALB FREE PRESS Friday, May 19, 2017 • Page 3

Music group to perform at Avondale Community
Registration is now open for Clarkston’s STEAM-
Plus summer camp at the Clarkston Community
participate in interactive games with attendees
The event begins at 11 a.m. and is free and open
Club Center, located at 3701 College Ave. to the public. For more information on the Atlanta
  According to event officials, Clarkston STEAM- Hawks community initiatives visit
The Avondale Community Club is hosting Banks Plus Summer camp is a science, technology, com/hawks/community-main-page.
and Shane in concert May 20 at 8 p.m. The club is engineering, art and math focused camp that will run
located at 59 Lakeshore Drive. For more information, June 12 through July 28 from 8 a.m. until 5 p.m.
“Our STEAM-Plus summer camp is focused
on improving literacy, academic performance and
bolstering confidence levels of students, refugees,
immigrants and native Georgians,” the organization’s
City to host music event
BROOKHAVEN website states. “Campers will explore and create eco-
art, assemblage art, painting, drama, dance, voice,
Donna Hopkins and Ralph Rodenberry will
improvisation, movie making and gardening as well
City to host stream cleanup perform May 19 at Stone Mountain’s Tunes By The
as tackle core subjects such as science, mathematics,
  Tracks event in the Municipal Parking Lot, next to the
social studies and English were they will work on
Brookhaven is seeking volunteer support for its Gazebo. Attendees can bring lawn chairs. The two-
reading and writing skills also keep a journal for
2017 Stream Cleanup May 20, from 10 a.m. to noon hour concert begins at 7 p.m. Tunes By The Tracks will
camp. There is also going to be 3D printing, computer
at the stream at Corporate Boulevard. Volunteers be held every Friday until June 30. For more informa-
programming, and architectural design which will
should wear sturdy, closed-toe shoes and long pants; tion, visit
strengthen their technological skills in computing.
sunscreen is recommended. If possible, bring any tools The STEAM-Plus summer camp is open to
that would be helpful in collecting trash. The city will children ages 6 to 14. The cost per four-week session is
provide everything else needed for the cleanup, includ-
ing bags,
gardening gloves and bottled water, as well as coffee
$300 per child. For more information and to register,
and doughnuts. Parking will be at the entrance to the
stream at 12 Corporate Blvd. For volunteer questions Lakeside High to host multi-school band
and to RSVP, email DECATUR performance
Decatur Active Living celebrates National Senior Lakeside High School will host a multi-school
Health and Fitness Day band concert on May 19 at 7 p.m.
CHAMBLEE Decatur Active Living invites the community to
According to Lakeside High’s band director
David Fairchild, musicians from the Lakeside
the first celebration of National Senior Health and cluster—including Henderson Middle, Sagamore
Fitness Day. The event will be held at the Decatur Hills, Oak Grove, Briarlake, Henderson Mill,
Recreation Center, 231 Sycamore Street, on May 31 Evansdale, Pleasantdale and Hawthorne elementary
from 9 a.m. until 1 p.m. schools—will participate.
The event will kick off with greetings from Mayor “All of us who teach music within the Lakeside
Patti Garrett and City Manager Peggy Merriss. cluster work together to instill an appreciation
Attendees can receive complimentary screenings, for music at a young age that we hope will last a
participate in exercise classes, learn about nutrition, lifetime,” Fairchild said. “By bringing the elementary,
try their hand at table tennis, participate in a walking middle and high school students together for one
challenge or ride an adult tricycle. Steel City Pops gala performance, we hope to inspire the younger
will have pops for sale and there will be drawings for ones to continue to enjoy music through high school
PDK to host Good Neighbor Airshow prizes throughout the event. and beyond, while reminding our older students of
  Participants include Kaiser Permanente, JenCare, how much they have learned and improved over the
Peachtree DeKalb Airport (PDK)—located at 2000 Decatur Healing Arts, LZ Aerobics, Jazzercise years.”
Airport Road in Chamblee—will celebrate its centen- Atlanta and DeKalb Wellness Center among others. Lakeside High School is located at 3801 Briarcliff
nial on June 10 from noon to 5 p.m. with an open The first 150 attendees will receive a free tote bag Road in Atlanta. The event is free and open to the
house and airshow. and a National Senior Health and Fitness Day cup. public.
Known as Good Neighbor Day, PDK’s annual The event is free. For more information contact Sara.
airshow includes performances from teams Aero- or (678)-553-6559. Construction hiring event announced
shell, Dixie Wing, Lima Lima, Rower Airshows, Tiger
Airshows, as well as daredevil pilots Larry King, Gary WorkSource DeKalb is teaming with Archer
Ward and Greg Koontz. Atlanta Hawks Foundation tips off court renova- Western for a hiring event May 18 from 9 a.m. until
Exhibitors and vendors event will include 10 food tions 1 p.m. at 4572 Memorial Drive in Decatur. Positions
truck and concessionaires, two radio stations, 23 include concrete finishers, equipment operators,
information booths and three rides, including Prestige The Atlanta Hawks Foundation will unveil carpenter foremen, carpenters and pipe fitter/layers
Helicopters, Skybound Aviation and Quality Aviation. state-of-the-art public basketball courts at DeKalb All qualified tradesmen are to register online at:
Attending PDK’s Good Neighbor Day Open House County’s N.H. Scott Recreation Center, May 20,   For more information about
and Airshow is free of charge but parking is $10. marking the foundation’s second DeKalb location WorkSource DeKalb visit 
and the ninth Metropolitan Atlanta site to receive
Hawks-themed courts since 2015. The Hawks will
celebrate the opening of the courts with a youth
CLARKSTON basketball showcase featuring participants from
DeKalb County Department of Recreation, Parks &
Cultural Affairs.
Atlanta Hawks alumni, cheerleaders and mascot
Community center to host STEAM camp Harry the Hawk will be on-hand to engage and
LOCAL DEKALB FREE PRESS Friday, May 19, 2017 • Page 4

Chickens OK
in Dunwoody?
City considers backyard
chicken ordinance
by R. Scott Belzer neighbors from living next to the
‘crazy chicken lady,’” Harris said. Harris said that, in Roswell,
the city allows 12 chickens
Backyards in Dunwoody may per acre with a maximum of
welcome chickens in the near 30 chickens. She concluded
Dunwoody city officials are considering an amended ordinance allowing backyard chickens. Photos courtesy of future following the first read of
Wikimedia Commons Dunwoody’s request for eight
an amended ordinance on May chickens maximum is reasonable
8. and responsible.
The proposed amendment Residents Lauren Fitzgerald
will allow residents to raise and Chloe Finster mentioned
chickens in all single-family such benefits as a constant
residential zoning districts. supply of eggs, bug and weed
Potential chicken owners will control and easy maintenance.
be required to construct coops, The pair said chickens also offer
which must also meet applicable the same benefits as regular
building codes. household pets such as cats and
According to the proposed dogs.
amendment, lots between 10,000 “Chickens are just another
and 15,000 square feet will be pet and should be allowed,”
allowed up to six chickens. Finster said.
Lots larger than 15,000 square Other pro-chicken residents
feet will be allowed up to eight said chicken coops often
chickens and no chickens will be require a substantial financial
permitted on lots smaller than investment.
10,000 square feet. Resident Cheryl Summers
The amendment states said she opposes the amendment
coops—an enclosure, cage or based on Dunwoody being an
pen—must be located in the rear “urban suburban community”
yard and be kept clean, sanitary rather than a “farming
and free from standing water. agricultural community.” She
The ordinance states coops may referenced a 2016 Centers for
not exceed six feet in height Disease Control and Prevention
and allow two square feet per report which states more
chicken. than 800 people were infected
“These regulations are with salmonella, all traced to
Residents in favor of chickens cited nutritional, pet-like and progressive benefits while residents opposed to intended to ensure the humane
chickens cited smell, disease and Dunwoody’s neighborhood values. Photos courtesy of Wikimedia Commons backyard flocks.
treatment of animals,” the Summers also referenced the
ordinance states. growing number of coyotes in
Should the ordinance the metro Atlanta region.
pass, those wishing to own “Is it really that important to
chickens on their property have these backyard chickens
will be required to submit an and raise concerns?” Summers
application to Dunwoody’s asked. “Chickens are farm
community development animals. They are not pets
department. like dogs and cats. If we allow
Resident Brianna Harris chickens, what’s next—pigs or
shared her pro-chicken stance goats?”
with council and the public Councilwoman Lynn
before the measure passed. Deutsche said she would like
She said allowing backyard to lower the allowable number
chickens in Dunwoody is of chickens from eight to six.
positive, sustainable and inline She said she has contacted
with policies from surrounding council members in Chamblee,
cities such as Atlanta, Roswell, which she said is slightly more
Norcross, Sandy Springs and advanced in the process than
others, which allow backyard Dunwoody.
chickens in agriculturally zoned Dunwoody mayor Denis
areas. Shortal said there are many
“It’s clear that Dunwoody’s issues to consider before passing
[current policy] is a conservative or declining the amended
policy meant to protect ordinance.
The proposed amended ordinance allowing chickens in Dunwoody has specific coop requirements. Photos
courtesy of Wikimedia Commons
LOCAL DEKALB FREE PRESS Friday, May 19, 2017 • Page 5

OPRAH Continued From Page 1
old, I started to realize [that] my whole
life—not just parts of my life—was a prayer,”
Winfrey said. “My whole life is an offering in
service. What I started to realize it’s not just
what I do, but how I do it. I’m not just praying
on my knees, but living in a state of humility
on my knees in service to the higher calling
of my life.”
Winfrey advised graduates to think
deeply about what they stand for and to
represent it well to find success.
“You’re nothing if you’re not the truth,”
Winfrey said.
For Winfrey, compassion is not only
sympathy, but also feeling what others feel, Photos by Donna Seay
feeling with others, shouldering their pain “You will get nowhere without a you are building your legacy.”
and recognizing aspects of one’s self in spiritual practice,” Winfrey said. “That’s not According to Agnes Scott president
other people. necessarily religion—for some people it is Elizabeth Kiss, Winfrey embodies the
To actualize commitment, Winfrey church, for some people it is meditating, college’s mission of creating impactful,
advised graduates to commit to serving the for some people it’s dancing, for some intelligent and successful women.
world. She characterized her 25-year career people it’s singing. You have to find a way to “I cannot think of a more perfect
on The Oprah Winfrey Show as a tool of nurture that which is the essence of you and commencement speaker for Agnes Scott,
service. continually give back to yourself so that you for this class and for this moment in history,”
Construfctive engagement, according are a full woman.” Kiss said. “From a difficult and abusive
to Winfrey, involves listening, hearing both The result, Winfrey said, is the ability to childhood, she has proven that with faith,
sides of issues and finding common ground, feel everything with love and purpose. She strength and the courage of a lion, your
even with forces deemed conflicting or quoted her friend, colleague and mentor dreams are not out of reach. She is a
confrontational. Maya Angelou in her concluding remarks. trailblazer in so many ways. There’s really
Winfrey said these three tools are key “Your legacy is every life you touch,” nothing she cannot do.”
in living a life of substance and ultimately, Winfrey said. “It’s not the awards you Agnes Scott College was one of nine
fulfillment. Winfrey also advised to “let failure receive, not the acclaim. It’s every single stops for Winfrey, who will be speaking at
be a friend,” to focus on positives rather than being you’ve ever come in contact with. You colleges and universities with graduates
negatives, to acknowledge no one makes it have left your heart print and legacy. Feel from the Oprah Winfrey Leadership
alone, and to find a spiritual practice. everything with love, because every moment Academy for Girls in South Africa.

FASHION Continued From Page 1
verbally, mentally and physically and also my mom literally went
abused by her father growing broke because of my treatment.
up.  At one point, She said she But I’m not going to change the
had as many as 10 different name. People have asked me
personalities. to change the name, but I won’t
“Those personalities don’t do that,” Cuttino-Vereen said,
really grow up. Even though crying. “That’s another thing
I’m 27, I’m still dealing with I want people to know. It’s so
personalities from when I was 13 expensive. [Anthony Hill] ran out
years old,” she said. of medication. I’ve been in his
However, Cuttino-Vereen has position.”
recently found a way to channel Cuttino-Vereen said she
her creativity and mental illness spends upwards of $500 for a
through fashion. She describes month’s supply of medication
herself as the “queen of tomboy to treat her mental illness.
vintage” and has launched her Despite being “broke,” she said
own website selling clothes she’s happy. The support she’s
called “Little Miss Broke.” received on social media has
Through social media and been overwhelming, she said.
her website, Cuttino-Vereen said Cuttino-Vereen said she has
she’s able to promote awareness been sober for more than a year
for mental illness within the now and was recently featured
Elisabeth Cuttino-Vereen shows off her handmade Georgia Tech inspired jacket.
Black community and hopes by the Sober Movement, a
to dispel some of the negative non-profit organization helping
connotations associated with said. “What happened to to a 911 call about a naked individuals in recovery.
mental illnesses. Anthony Hill really broke my man wandering the apartment “I have friends from all over
“This is why I kind of want heart and I know what it’s like complex acting erratically. Hill the world and people finally
to focus on Black girls [my age] because I’ve been in his shoes.” was diagnosed with bipolar listening,” Cuttino-Vereen.
because most of our parents Hill, 27, a former Air Force disorder. Cuttino-Vereen said she
are the baby boomer generation veteran, was shot and killed by Cuttino-Vereen said her hopes someday to own multiple
and the answer to everything former DeKalb County Police clothing brand Little Miss Broke clothing stores and continue
is reading the Bible instead of Officer Robert Olsen in March has several meanings. to spread her story of mental
seeking help,” Cuttino-Vereen 2015. Police were responding “At the time I felt broken illness and being “broke.”
OPINION DEKALB FREE PRESS Friday, May 19, 2017 • Page 6

Letter to the Editor
Administrative control could have helped
Clarkston high school soccer playoff player was about as low as you can get. would have never happened if the game
game was carried out in a way that was Then a Clarkston fan jumped onto the field would have been played anywhere else. I
very disappointing to players, parents, and another threw something at the refs. am thankful for administrators at Carrollton
and students of Carrollton High School. Then Dekalb police had to be called?? How and that this would have never happened in
No class whatsoever was shown by their can they be respected for being a “state our stadium.
school officials. They had no control over playoff team” when something like this
certain kids which resulted in clearing the happens. You have to show respect to get Terri Byrd, Carrolton, GA
stadium of fans who paid $7.00 per ticket respect. Just because of a flip of a coin the
to watch. For a player to spit on another game was held at Hallford stadium. This

Suggested gifts for teacher appreciation are unacceptable
May 1- 5 was officially programs. The concept of representative of DeKalb
Teacher Appreciation Week for suggested daily gifts can easily County School District asking
most schools in our country and place additional burdens on if there are existing district-
likely in other countries as well. entire households as well as approved guidelines for teacher
Good teachers should be cause discord between the appreciation gifts, and if
appreciated; they typically have John Hewitt student and those with whom individual principals have the
as much, if not more, influence they live. authority to suggest whatever
over our youth than do many Those students who are they choose to the students of
parents or guardians. Teachers not able to give a gift a day their schools.
often spend more awake time favorite restaurant, a gift that is to their teacher will likely feel According to DCSD policy,
with our youth than do almost the teacher’s favorite color or a embarrassed and could be “No person shall approach,
any other adults in their lives. monogrammed gift. taunted by their peers for not advise, or lead any subordinate
A discussion with an It seems a bit presumptuous giving a gift each day. into expecting that they should
associate revealed to me that for a principal, or any other The entire concept to me is give in any solicitation effort.”
her child, who is enrolled in a school personnel, to suggest beyond comprehension. Back Students, parents and
(DCSD) DeKalb County School giving of any kind by students. in our day, we occasionally care providers have enough
District school, was given a Some students and families may gave teachers trinkets, often pressure on them already. It is
list of suggested gifts for the not have the financial means to homemade, at Christmas and unacceptable that principals
teacher and that students were give—particularly a gift each day would give them a valentine suggest gifts that these
encouraged to give the teacher for five days. for Valentine’s Day, but that students should give to their
a different gift each day during Our county, state and nation was the extent of our giving. teachers—particularly just prior
Teacher Appreciation Week. are plagued with homelessness, Our principals certainly did to the end of the school year
Apparently, the list of suggested financial struggles and broken not suggest gifts for teachers, when these same teachers
gifts was compiled by the homes. Many students live those decisions were made by will be conducting end-of-year
principal of the school. with elderly relatives on fixed the student and their parents or assessments on each student in
Some of the suggested gifts incomes or are in foster guardians. their classrooms.
are a $5 gift card to the teacher’s I inquired to a media
OPINION DEKALB FREE PRESS Friday, May 19, 2017 • Page 7

No good deed
“No good deed goes crumbling around him. This judgment, and I also try and
unpunished,” Anonymous, but work included asking and remember that.
obviously coined by someone ‘One Man’s tasking others for favors on Again from my mother—
wise in the ways of our world. Opinion’ Christmas Eve. We sought no try and forgive first and then
compensation and really had forget. This was usually
My mother and others Bill Crane low expectations for any real followed by a suggestion related
instilled in me the importance of words of thanks, but were more to turning the other cheek. This
gratitude and giving back. Dad than a bit surprised to later find advice conflicts somewhat with
often reminded us of our instead character attacks and my grandfather’s suggestion
comparative good fortune and incredible and long-lasting challenges to our integrity. to hit hard, first and low when
the obligation to assist and help clients and team members Friends have suggested, you know things are about to
those less fortunate. And later without peer in our industry. frequently, the need to capture get ugly. In between those two
my college fraternity ingrained This has allowed the firm to all of these media, political and conflicting but still wise life
in me the understanding that periodically select and serve related adventures in book lessons, I think I can find a clear
we are all our brothers’ keepers several pro-bono clients, form. I know I’m getting up path. Or at least have some fun
and that we should live the typically charitable and non- there in years, but it still feels and learn a few more lessons
life of the Samaritan, always profit organizations. far too early for a memoir. And while trying.
offering the helping hand, and And in addition, in times of I have always found those “kiss
on occasion the hand-out. crisis we routinely offer support and tell” books, where trusted
Though I don’t wear my faith to individuals, public officials advisors raise their profile Bill Crane also serves
on my sleeve, I consider myself and even a large corporation by damaging the reputation as a political analyst and
Christian, was reared Catholic, or two, whose reputation and of those they advised, to be commentator for Channel 2’s
and our home and family life public standing appear to be a sullied way to practice our Action News, WSB-AM News/
have always been infused with in free-fall. As I was recently profession or make a living. Talk 750 and now 95.5 FM,
charity, sharing and contributing sharing with a chastising friend No, I will just go on smiling as well as a columnist for The
to a variety of worthy causes. of mine, in our business, while and remembering the better Champion, DeKalb Free Press
None of that is going to most flee from the burning times, and hope that the times and Georgia Trend. Crane is
change. Thanks again, mom. reputation or household—we of comeuppance arrive a bit a DeKalb native and business
But that said, I am run toward same, looking to sooner than later for those owner, living in Scottdale. You
increasingly aware of how often, douse the flames and assist begging for same. Stress, can reach him or comment on a
while assisting, supporting, those in need. grief and trauma all do strange column at bill.csicrane@gmail.
loaning or gifting resources, It isn’t always easy, and yes, things to peoples’ thinking and com.
how frequently that hand of I am clear that I am making
kindness is bitten, slapped or these choices on my own,
later ignored. And in the worst and I’m a grown up. But I will
of cases, when the donation never cease to be amazed
of time, professional expertise at how many of those in dire
and requested support is even need almost immediately turn
greater; how the recipient around to bite the hand that
occasionally later returns fire, feeds—almost as soon as that
versus warmth or gratitude. immediate need or gratification
No good deed goes has been met. 
unpunished may be an over- Back to my low-visibility faith
simplified cliche, but I also find though, I also believe in karma,
it all too often to be true. In this and that what goes around
instant gratification, microwave comes around. (My cliche count
solution-seeking world in which may explode this column yet!)
we live, many seem to only And I have thankfully lived long
place value on gifts appropriate enough to watch this truism play
to their tangible and visible out—time and again, among
cost. If we donate our time or those who demonstrated such
work efforts, it, as a result, must a lack of class, appreciation or
be of no real value. gratitude—and worse.
Our small enterprise has Of late I spent several
been doing well for several months attempting to assist a
years now. We have some longtime friend whose life is

the DeKalb
Publisher: Photographer: STATEMENT FROM THE
John Hewitt Travis Hudgons
Chief Financial Officer: Staff Reporters: We sincerely appreciate the
discussion surrounding this and any
Let Us Know What You Think! Dr. Earl D. Glenn Carla Parker issue of interest to DeKalb County.
SEND LETTERS TO EDITOR, R. Scott Belzer The Champion was founded in 1991
THE DEKALB FREE PRESS encourages opinions from Production Manager: Horace Holloman expressly to provide a forum for
The DeKalb Free Press, discourse for all community residents
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LOCAL DEKALB FREE PRESS Friday, May 19, 2017 • Page 8

“Huddling up” for education
DeKalb County’s Destiny
Achievers Academy of
Excellence receives refresh
by R. Scott Belzer

On May 4, Destiny
Achievers Academy of
Excellence—a DeKalb County
charter school targeting at-risk
youth—became a crossroads for
philanthropy, volunteerism and
good ol’ fashion hard work.
As part of T-Mobile’s
Huddle Up program, the
school—located at 3595
Linecrest Road in Ellenwood—
hosted more than 150
Principal Kelvin Griffin said the need
volunteers from AmeriCorps’ to provide a positive, welcoming
City Year program, T-Mobile environment at Destiny was so great
and Metro PCS . that he reached out to T-Mobile for
help. Photo by R. Scott Belzer
The volunteers—some
from as far away as T-Mobile’s
corporate office in Seattle as coordinating volunteers and
well as call centers in Alabama finding a worthy candidate for
and Augusta—spent their day T-Mobile’s Huddle Up program,
painting hallways, refreshing said the one-day event was
the cafeteria, spreading mulch, designed to address any needs
coating outside fixtures and Destiny may have.
creating parking spaces. Orginski visited Refreshing at Destiny Achievers Academy included interior as well as exterior improvments.
“Today is a massive approximately 10 schools before
revitalization project,” said hearing from Griffin. Following
a brief conversation, Orginski T-Mobile’s Huddle
principal Kelvin Griffin. “We’re Up community outreach
very fortunate. It’s humbling decided Destiny would be a
worthy candidate for Huddle program invests monetary
and overwhelming at the same resources, employee time and
time—I’ve never been part of Up.
“That really stuck with me,” energy to high-need urban
a major feat such as this. This communities, according to its
endeavor will help save costs Orginski said. “He’s the one
that reached out to me, who website. Spokesman Monica
and money as it relates to Brown said the upgrades will
beautifying our school.” works in community outreach.
It let me know the school really provide a more up-to-date and
Griffin said he hopes prosperous environment for
Destiny always provides needed this service. This school
was a great size for 150 people students.
a positive and welcoming “We are one big family
environment for students and to touch every corner of the
school—inside, outside, the coming here to make sure we
that the revitalization will help are doing whatever we can for
immensely. cafeteria. There isn’t going to
be any part of this school that Destiny Achiever’s Academy,”
“Walking down a hallway Brown said. “We’ve gotten
with murals that are nothing remains untouched.”
Orginski, who has donations, we’ve pulled people
but inspiration and positivity, together from all locations—it’s
students feel safe and welcome,” coordinated similar events since
2012, said giving back to the huge. This is just what we do.
Griffin said. “It’s a great feeling.” We work hard, we play hard,
Tyler Orginski, the community, seeing students’
faces and hearing from faculty and we’re all about giving back Destiny Achievers Academy of Excellence hosted more than 150 volunteers from
AmeriCorps Care Force to the community.” T-Mobile’s Huddle Up Program for a campus refresh on May 4.
employee responsible for is all the reinforcement he
needs to continue working.

Our client has one (1) existing 60-foot railroad
communications pole within the railroad right-of-way.
Tower #25994 is located at railroad mile post 624.70 The Mayor and the Atlanta City Council will adopt a millage rate which will
in Chamblee, near the intersection of Peachtree require no tax increase.
Road and American Industrial Way, Dekalb County,
GA 30341. Golder Associates on behalf of our
client invites comments from any interested party
regarding specific location information and/or the All concerned citizens are invited to the public hearings to be held at the
potential effects of the towers on historic properties. Atlanta City Hall Complex, 55 Trinity Avenue, Atlanta, Georgia in the City Council
Comments may be sent to Angela Kappen, N27
W23960 Paul Rd., Suite 210, Pewaukee, WI 53072 Chamber located on the Second Floor on Wednesday, May 24, 2017 at 11:00
or Comments must be a.m. and 6:30 p.m.
received 30 days following published date.
LOCAL DEKALB FREE PRESS Friday, May 19, 2017 • Page 9

DeKalb County Chief of Police James Conroy speaks to a crowd of supporters during the On May 10, DeKalb County officials recognized 42 officers in DeKalb County who were killed in the line of duty the
annual Fallen Officers Memorial ceremony annual Fallen Officers Memorial ceremony.

DeKalb pays respect
to fallen officers sacrifice, because there is no greater public servant
by Horace Holloman
than those who purchased our freedom with his
or her life.” SNAPFINGER
Among those honored at the ceremony were
DeKalb County officials, officers, residents and DeKalb County Police officers Ricky Bryant
family members of slain officers showed support and Eric Barker who were shot and killed while
for law enforcement May 10 during the annual
Fallen Officers Memorial ceremony.
working security at the Glenwood Gardens
apartments in 2008. Sheriff-elect Derwin Brown, TREATMENT FACILITY
The event recognized all DeKalb County who was shot in his driveway in 2000 three days
officers who were killed in the line of duty. The before he was to be sworn into office, was also
annual memorial honored more than 40 officers mentioned.
from DeKalb County, Decatur, Clarkston,
Doraville, Pine Lake, Stone Mountain and
MARTA. Some of the family members of those
officers were in attendance.
“In our profession, the families of those killed
‘We cannot MAY 22, 2017
in the line of duty are known as police survivors.
Each year when we gather to honor our fellow
law enforcement officers who made the ultimate
say thank you 6:30 P.M. - 8 P.M.
sacrifice, our police survivors join us,” said
DeKalb County Chief of Police James Conroy to
a crowd of more than 100 people. “They’re here
to our heroes
to remember their brothers, sisters, sons and
daughters and fathers. To our police survivors, I
thank you for spending your time with us.”
During the month of May, law enforcement - Michael Thurmond
agencies throughout the country honor fallen
officers and their families. The Fallen Officer The DeKalb County Department of Watershed
Memorial included the reading of names of DeKalb County Police Officer Kevin Toatley,
who died in September of 2015, is the most recent Management invites residents to attend a community
officers who lost their life in the line of duty.
name added to the list of 42 officers honored meeting for a construction update about the
“The sacrifice made by these officers will never
be forgotten. We will continue to remember and during the annual ceremony. Toatley was killed by expansion of the Snapfinger Wastewater Treatment
honor them and each of us owes a great debt,” a driver headed the wrong way while Toatley was Facility. Attendees will be able to ask questions and
Conroy said. “We need to continue to honor them in his cruiser. hear directly from Director Scott Towler about the
and honor our fallen heroes.” Thurmond said officers today should be status of this Capital Improvement Program project.
The service ended with a 21-gun salute and supported with higher pay and better training.
helicopter flyover. DeKalb County CEO Michael “We cannot say thank you to our heroes
Thurmond also shared remarks during the event. enough, but we can ensure that their sacrifices
Thurmond said it’s important to recognize the are not in vain. We must work to provide better
sacrifices of officers. training, the latest technology and better pay for
our men and women in uniform,” Thurmond
“Our law enforcement officers and their
families face the grim reality every day that they said. “We can work to make our community
safer by cleaning up the blight and tearing down
The DeKalb County De
may not return home safe at the end of their shift,”
Thurmond said. “Today we gather to honor their abandoned buildings.”
Management invites re
LOCAL DEKALB FREE PRESS Friday, May 19, 2017 • Page 10

Ready for relief
Interstate 85 reopens after collapse
by Horace Holloman DeKalb County to get to their breathing a sigh of relief, destinations, Allen said. MARTA CEO Keith Parker
DeKalb roads such as admitted he was less than
DeKalb County officials Memorial Drive, Buford thrilled with Deal’s and
breathed a collective sigh of Highway, Covington Highway, the Georgia Department
relief after Gov. Nathan Deal North Druid Hills and of Transportation’s DeKalb County officials say they are relieved after Gov. Nathan Deal announced
announced that Interstate 85 Moreland Avenue experienced announcement. the reopening of Interstate 85.
would reopen roughly six heavy traffic during the last six Since the bridge collapse,
weeks after a fire caused the weeks. MARTA ridership increased
reopening, I’m honestly perception of MARTA.
bridge to collapse. During the Allen said DeKalb came up at most rail stations with the
not all that excited,” said “It’s been pretty dramatic.
May 12-13 weekend, north with a plan to “flush” or alter Brookhaven MARTA station
Parker, laughing. “[The When you take a look at the
and south bound lanes of the traffic light timing in those increasing by as much as 67
collapse] certainly created an customer service surveys our
interstate reopened. locations. percent.
opportunity for us to show ratings are the highest they’ve
The bridge collapsed March “On major routes you re- “We want to keep 100
what we can do.” been since the Olympic
30 and shut down the interstate time traffic signals to flush cars percent of our new riders and
Over the years, Parker said games,” Parker said.
going south and north near Ga. through as fast as possible,” we have some incentives that
the public has changed its
400. Allen said. “The first three or we’re going to be rolling out
The collapse put a strain four weeks we were changing in the next few weeks,” said
routes and doing flush plans Parker. “We’re going to do Day Care, Pre-School • Elementary School
on DeKalb County traffic,
according to Peggy Allen, ...constantly adjusting signal everything from reducing the • Middle School High School • College/University Students
associate director of roads and timing.” fares, moving forward with
drainage for the county.   Allen said it may take a more technology, new phone
Allen said the bridge fix few weeks for DeKalb and apps and a host of new things
came at the right time. Atlanta commuters coming to let people know we want
“It’s a relief. Actually, for through DeKalb roadways to them to stay with MARTA.
the last six weeks it’s been an feel comfortable enough to Our goal is to convert anyone
overwhelming proposition for take their old routes on I-85. that has tried us in the last six
us,” Allen said.  “The location Allen said the collapse was weeks to full-time MARTA
[of the bridge collapse] a learning experience for the riders.”
was right in the middle of department. Due to the increase in
everything we do and added “Hopefully it will never ridership, MARTA added
additional stress to our happen again but we’ll gear up 2,400 parking spaces
if it does. We were prepared including 275 parking spaces DeKalb County Board of Health
Due to a portion of the for something bad, not quite in Chamblee and 175 in offers Saturday and Evening Back-to-School Hours
bridge being burned down, that bad, but we learned from Brookhaven.
many commuters used this,” Allen said. “While everyone is really Immunizations • Vision, Hearing &
alternate routes through Despite some officials excited about the bridge Nutrition Screenings • Sports Physicals
No appointment is necessary.
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Tuesday, August 1
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Wednesday, August 2
See all funeral homes. Thursday, August 3 •
8:15 a.m. - 7 p.m.
Extended hours for dental
All prices and reviews. Monday, August 7
Tuesday, August 8
screenings at T. O. Vinson
Health Center: 9 a.m. - 6:30
All in one place. Wednesday, August 9 p.m. Dental screenings at
other Health Centers call for
more information.
Parents should bring:
Funeralocity welcomes Atlanta. • Each child and his or her immunization record.
• Cash, a debit/credit card or a check from a Georgia bank.
Introducing Funeralocity, the new website where you can see and compare • Each child’s insurance card. We accept Medicaid, PeachCare
ratings, reviews and prices of funeral and cremation services of all funeral for Kids and State Health Benefit Plan (Blue Cross and Blue
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T. O. Vinson Health Center (404) 294-3762
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LOCAL DEKALB FREE PRESS Friday, May 19, 2017 • Page 11


Henderson Mill Elementary School in Brookhaven gave another STEAM
tour on May 12 to education professionals. Henderson Mill is the first
school in the state to receive science, technology, engineering, art and
mathematics (STEAM) certification. Photo submitted.

Officer Chris Poythress of the Chamblee Police Department conducted a free hour-long self-defense class at Dresden
Park on May 10. Photo submitted.

Workers from Keller Williams helped renovate and refresh the Clarkston
Community Center on May 11. Photo submitted.

Participants in the 22nd Beau Hardeman K-12 Chess Tournament held May 6 at Gresham Park. The event was spon- Brookhaven Parks and Recreation Director Brian Borden, center, was
sored by Unconditional Love for Children’s CheckMate Chess Academy. Photo by Travis Hudgons awarded the “Patriot Award Certificate of Appreciation” from the Office of the
United States Secretary of Defense during the May 9 Brookhaven city council

Have you created programming you’d like to air on TV?
Do you have an interest in Public Access TV in DeKalb County?
Submit your show to DeKalb County’s Public Access channel, DeKalb 25.
Drop off DVD or USB copies to the Manuel J. Maloof Center at
1300 Commerce Drive, Decatur, GA 30030, or upload your content via the internet.

(404) 371-2325
LOCAL DEKALB FREE PRESS Friday, May 19, 2017 • Page 12

Governor signs hotel motel tax
bill for Brookhaven, Tucker
annual amount available for
by Carla Parker construction of the Peachtree Creek Greenway from an
increase in the hotel/motel
Gov. Nathan Deal signed tax rate will be approximately
two bills into law May 8 that $650,000. The funding would More than 500 Brockett Elementary students received new backpacks filled with books on May 12 courtesy of First Book
would increase the hotel/motel not cover the entire cost of and Wipro, a nonprofit and information technology company in Tucker. Photo by R. Scott Belzer
tax in Brookhaven and Tucker

the 2.8-mile Peachtree Creek
to provide funding for projects Greenway project, but would
in those cities. complete key segments
House bill 575 between North Druid Hills
(Brookhaven) and house bill Road and Briarwood Road.
596 (Tucker) increases the James Tsismanakis,
hotel/motel tax in both cities executive director of Discover
to eight percent, which aligns
with DeKalb County’s hotel/
DeKalb Convention and Brockett Elementary, nonprofit, Tucker officials
motel tax. Brookhaven plans to
Visitors Bureau, said the
greenway will be an asset for and IT company partner for literacy event
use the funding from the tax Brookhaven and the 11 hotels
increase to fund the Peachtree in the city.
Creek Greenway, and Tucker “This new development by R. Scott Belzer they face. Learning does not take “We have a network of
plans to use the extra funding speaks to the transition of place in isolation and we can about 325,000 programs that
for parks and recreation more recreation/lifestyle help them build a library.” are registered with us—Brockett
projects. tourism attractions,” he said. Bines-Truitt said the being one of them,” Kreitzer
“This legislation is “The greenway will serve More than 500 students at partnership with both First Book said. “Books in the home are
an investment in several as a catalyst of new visitors, Brockett Elementary School— and Wipro is also a step toward actually rare in lower income
critical areas including the activities and accommodations located at 1855 Brockett Road obtaining STEAM (science, communities. If you don’t have
regional economy, alternative throughout the region.” in Tucker—received new technology, engineering, art and access to books over the summer,
transportation, tourism and The 8 percent hotel/ backpacks filled with books on mathematics) certification. there has been proven to be a
greenspace preservation,” Deal motel tax would give Tucker May 12 thanks to a national More than 50 volunteers drop in reading levels. Providing
said. an additional $171,000 nonprofit and an international from First Book and Wipro books to kids to take home with
State law authorizes the annually for projects informational technology filled the 500 backpacks with them, some of whom may not
hotel/motel tax to be collected including renovations to company. 1,500 books on May 11 in an have books in the home, is a
on charges made for rooms, Tucker Recreation Center and First Book, a nonprofit event attended by Congressman point of ownership and pride. It
lodging or accommodations installation of bathrooms at specializing in delivering more Hank Johnson and DeKalb helps make sure reading levels
furnished by hotels, motels, Tucker’s parks. than 160 million books to Commissioner Nancy Jester. stay up.”
inns, lodges, tourist camps or Tucker is set to take over children in need, partnered The backpacks were Brockett parent and school
campgrounds. Brookhaven’s the parks and recreation within with the global IT company distributed on May 12 at an council member Holly Duncan
tax rate was at 5 percent the city limits from DeKalb Wipro Limited to assemble the event that also featured Wipro said she was thrilled to have
previously. County and hired a consulting backpacks and stuff them full of volunteers and Tucker city such positive participation and
“This is a great day for group in March to conduct books. officials reading to students. such a substantial community
the city of Brookhaven and an in-depth study of the Principal Venessa Bines- Wipro volunteer Angelique partnership. She said she hopes
for the state of Georgia,” opportunities and challenges Truitt called the event “an Wright, a mother of two, said the event is just one of many
Brookhaven Mayor John presented by the parks. During amazing opportunity to support working with and helping positive events that will take
Ernst said. “This allows us a citywide town hall meeting in the school’s literacy initiative.” children is a passion. place at Brockett Elementary.
to move full steam ahead on January, Mayor Frank Auman Bines-Truitt said a similar event “We have to give back,” “This two-hour event will
the PCG project, which will said he wants the Tucker took place during the 2015- Wright said. “We have to assist in have lasting ramifications [for
connect Brookhaven’s portion Recreation Center to be a 2016 school year, when Brockett any way that we can to promote students],” Duncan said. “This is
of the 12.3-mile North Fork signature facility. Elementary staff sent books education.” a fantastic school with a diverse
Peachtree Creek Trail project “We want to show the home with students. Sarah Kreitzer, senior student body as well as strong
from Mercer University in world how to do it right, fund Bines-Truitt said the event manager of strategic alliances administrative and teacher
unincorporated DeKalb to the it properly and make it go in helps promote reading at home, with First Book, said the event support.”
PATH400 trail, the South Fork a way that it should,” Auman a practice that can aid students in is one of many events the Bines-Truitt encouraged
Conservancy Trails and the said. overcoming societal barriers. She nonprofit engages in to ensure community stakeholders to
Atlanta Beltline.” Tucker Communications said community support is more children have equal access to volunteer any resource they have
Brookhaven’s 2017 budget Coordinator Matt Holmes said than appreciated at Brockett. a quality education, regardless available to aid in the education
estimates hotel/motel tax the city council will have two ““It’s the community coming of circumstances. She said the of children.
revenue at $2.2 million. Under readings to discuss the funding in to support the school and nonprofit has had a partnership “It doesn’t have to be
the existing arrangement, 60 before voting on it. change the lives of students,” with Wipro since 2015. financial—it can be time,” Bines-
percent of that revenue, or They want to give the Bines-Truitt said. “Research Kreitzer encouraged any Truitt said. “We are a community
$1.3 million, goes to the city’s motels and hotels time to shows that the more students community group or church school. Come visit us, see
general fund. Forty percent, adjust to the change,” Holmes read, the better prepared they to apply to First Book, whose what we’re doing—anyone is
or $880,000, goes to Discover said. are. Some of our parents are qualifications include serving at welcome!’
DeKalb. The tax increase is expected illiterate—students reading can least 70 percent low-income or
City officials previously to go in effect July 1. help them overcome any barriers Title I families as a client base.
stated that the estimated
LOCAL DEKALB FREE PRESS Friday, May 19, 2017 • Page 13

Suspect arrested in Stone
Mountain hit-and-run
Stone Mountain and Atwell LLC reached an agreement on the East Mountain by Carla Parker
Street Sidewalk project. Photos by Carla Parker

Stone Mountain, contractor reach Stone Mountain police
have arrested a man who hit
According to the National Weather Service, a tornado touched down in Decatur
on May 4. Photo courtesy of the National Weather Service.
settlement on sidewalk project a woman on Main Street and
by Carla Parker business and property owners,
Demetric Deshawn
Williams, 24, was arrested May
Tornado touches down in Decatur and visitors alike will enjoy 11 and charged with leaving
and be proud of.” A tornado briefly touched structural damage, but did
the scene of an accident, duty
In February, the city down in Decatur on May 4. break numerous branches and
Stone Mountain and Atwell to make immediate report
ordered work to stop on According to the National uproot a few trees.
LLC reached an agreement of accidents (hit and run)
the project, which includes Weather Service in Peachtree According to the National
on the East Mountain Street and serious injury by vehicle,
the Second Street project City, a EF-0 tornado formed at Weather Service, EF stands for
Sidewalk project. the Stone Mountain Police
phase, due to a dispute with approximately 9:40 p.m. near enhanced fujita—named after
The city announced April Department announced on its
the contractor over project Forest Glen Circle. The twister storm scientist Ted Fujita—
26 that Mayor Pat Wheeler, Facebook page.
expenditures. Last month, the traveled northeast, crossing and is used as a scale to
the city council, City Manager According to police, on
city council agreed to enforce I-285 along North Decatur judge tornado intensity. EF-0
ChaQuias Thornton and legal May 8 at approximately 3:35
the terms of the contract as Road and Greenridge Circle. tornadoes, such as the one that
counsel for the city reached a p.m., a female was struck by
executed. After crossing Greenridge touched down in Decatur, is
negotiated settlement with the a white 2012 Chrysler 200 at
The city council awarded Circle at approximately 9:41 considered the weakest and
contractor of the project on 1008 Main St. and the car left
the $22,507 contract to Atwell p.m., the tornado lifted and typically consist of winds
April 25. without stopping. Police said
LLC to construct the side dissipated. ranging from 65 to 85 miles
“The construction team the victim sustained serious
walk in April 2016. According According to weather per hour.
mobilized and returned to injuries and was in critical but
to the minutes from several officials, the tornado’s path For more information, visit
the construction site on April stable condition.
council meetings, the council was 1.1 miles long and 80
26,” the city stated. “The city Police obtained video
had several discussions about yards at maximum width. It
understands the inconvenience footage of the car before the
additional payments for did not cause any injuries or
that [the] delay in this project incident. Police said the car
may have caused and we materials and other changes. was recovered.
applaud the community’s The city previously added
efforts to be patient as the sidewalks on Main Street from City Schools of Decatur

situation was resolved. Please Manor Drive to Poole Street Budget for Fiscal Year 2018

know that the city is looking and on Manor Drive from July 1, 2017 through June 30, 2018

forward to completion of this Main Street to Third Street in
Phase I of the project. General Fund Special Funds Nutrition Fund Capital Funds
project and is hopeful for a ESTIMATED REVENUES
finished product that citizens, Local Taxes $ 30,230,018 $ 4,800,000
Local Other 2,974,585 $ 1,504,000
State General 25,615,423

Tucker holds hearing on budget
State Other $ 755,900 39,500
Federal 1,518,325 682,500 175,000
Transfers from Other Funds 251,739
The May 8 Tucker City Council regular meeting featured a General Fund Balance Obligated 6,375,476
public hearing on the city’s full-year budget. Capital Fund Balance Restricted 36,292,928
The fiscal year 2016 budget calls for almost $6.7 million Total Revenues $ 65,195,502 $ 2,525,964 $ 2,226,000 $ 41,267,928
in general fund expenditures, with revenues estimated at $7.6
million. City officials said the budget proposal would increase the ESTIMATED EXPENDITURES
city’s reserves to around $3 million. Pending council approval, the Instruction $ 41,872,935 $ 2,157,222
fiscal year would run from July 1 through June 30, 2018. Pupil Services 2,983,484 110,658
Improvement of Instructional Services 1,294,080 133,880
The budget was discussed on a first read, as was an amended
Educational Media Services 1,330,323
fiscal year 2017 budget. That amendment increases projected
Federal Grant Administration 124,204
revenues by $420,750, budgeted expenses by $254,676 and puts General Administration 1,348,257
the remaining $166,074 in reserve. Both budget items discussed School Administration 5,496,941
are expected to have a final vote at the city council meeting on Support Services - Business 522,931
May 22. Maintenance and Operation of Plant Services 5,600,612
The council meeting also featured representatives from the Student Transportation Service 1,447,251
Stone Mountain and Tucker-Northlake Community Improvement Support Services - Central 1,927,099
Districts (CIDs) which presented funding project to council that Other Support Services 107,000
they are targeting. School Nutrition Program 999,249 $ 2,226,000
The council voted unanimously to approve the boundaries of Community Services Operations
a Downtown Development Authority (DDA), which was the first Facilities Acquisition and Construction Services $ 37,067,855
step in activating a DDA. The DDA will be an appointed body Transfers to Other Funds 251,739
focused on spurring redevelopment in Tucker. Debt Service 13,601 4,200,073
Total Expenditures $ 65,195,502 $ 2,525,964 $ 2,226,000 $ 41,267,928
There was also a public hearing on a special land use permit
approval for proposed multi-family project, Northlake Senior The Fiscal Year 2018 Tentative Budget will be considered for final adoption by the Board of Education at
Apartments. The city council is expected to hold a final vote on 6:30 PM at the regular board meeting scheduled for Tuesday, June 13, 2017. The meeting will be held in the
the development at their meeting on May 22. Board Room of the Central Office at 125 Electric Avenue.
EDUCATION DEKALB FREE PRESS Friday, May 19, 2017 • Page 14

Norman Sauce III, principal at Chamblee Charter High School will depart for the Spalding-Griffin School System at the end of the school year. Sauce’s Twitter account constantly highlights the successes of
the Chamblee community. Photos submitted.

A FOND FAREWELL Sauce began as principal at Chamblee
Chamblee Charter High School
principal accepts new post
20 high schools in Georgia. media.
by R. Scott Belzer Charter High School in 2012. He said he Though he acknowledges many DCSD board member Stan Jester was enticed to work at DeKalb County academic achievements, Sauce counts published a post on his blog from a
School District (DCSD) because he saw the formation of a Positive Health Chamblee Charter High School parent
It’s not unusual to see activity it as an organization experiencing a Steering Committee as one he’s most detailing how much Sauce means to
from Chamblee Charter High School renaissance and Chamblee as a school proud of. He said the panel—made the community, crediting his openness,
principal Norman Sauce III’s Twitter with strong community and parent up of students, parents, mental health professionalism, authority, caring
account. support. professionals, stakeholders and civic attitude, lack of favoritism, vision,
Sauce is not shy in sharing comments Two years later, Sauce said his officials—is attempting to change the appropriateness and ability to provide a
and pictures about employees of assumptions proved to be correct. way schools support mental health. high-quality learning environment.
the year, student protests, athletic “I love this school, I love this Sauce also credits his relationships Sauce’s Twitter feed has been flooded
accomplishments, district activities and community, I love the people who with Chamblee Charter stakeholders— with well-wishes and thank-yous.
academic achievements. make up the community, I love being advice he plans to pass on to his “Thank you for your service and
“As I’ve learned as a leader—if you here,” Sauce said. “I’ve been so blessed replacement. He also recommends dedication to the students of DeKalb,”
don’t tell your own story, others will,” with good will, support, participation using positives rather than negatives wrote DCSD’s official Twitter page. “We
Sauce said. “I’m going to take every and involvement from city officials, as a foundation for improvement or wish you all the best and know you will
opportunity I can to make sure the continue to make an impact”
communities at large know what we “You will be greatly missed,” wrote
are doing—not just on the athletic Bill Armstrong. “A leader when we
field, but in the classroom and in the
community. There are so many great
things to brag about every day with such
I’m honored and humbled to needed it most… The best to you and
your family.”
“We will miss you at Chamblee!,”
great students, teachers and supportive wrote Ward Howell. “Thank you for
At the beginning of the 2017-2018
serve the Chamblee Charter your leadership!”
“You’ll be missed at Chamblee
school year, however, Sauce’s Twitter Charter High School,” wrote Liz
account may have a different focus, as
he has accepted the role of executive High School community and Wong. “Although there will be another
principal, no one can replace you. Happy
director of elementary education the trails.”
Griffin-Spalding County School System,
according to a memo released on May 2.
“I’m honored and humbled to serve
DeKalb County School District. Sauce said it’s the community—
teachers, students, parents and
stakeholders—who deserve thanks
the Chamblee Charter High School for making his time at Chamblee
– Norman Sauce III memorable.
community and DeKalb County School
District,” Sauce announced May 3. “I’m “I can’t put into words my immense
touched by your grace and kindness gratitude for the community—the
towards me. I’m touched by the belief Chamblee community,” Sauce said.
in my abilities to contribute in Griffin- school officials, teachers, students and adjustment. “When I think about the Chamber of
Spading County Schools soon. I’m eager stakeholders who have rolled their “High quality relationships are the Commerce, city council, other civic
to serve.” sleeves up to offer help in making this vehicle for accomplishing anything as a officials, teachers, parents and students
Sauce said his life at home— school successful. We’re blessed with so leader,” Sauce said. “If people don’t know that have come to the table to help us
including twin 4-year-olds—requires many resources that, together, we could you or trust you to get things done, and encourage us, I can’t say thank you
more time with his children and family. accomplish anything.” it’s very hard to accomplish anything. enough. I will never be able to thank all
“We have a very challenging family Accomplishments during Sauce’s Reassure folks you’re not looking to of those folks enough for the confidence
situation,” Sauce said. “The position I’ve two-year stint include Chamblee Charter change the formula.” to lead such an exceptional school
accepted will allow more normal family being named among the top 500 schools Evidence of Sauce’s relationships with community. This is somewhere anyone
hours—there’s nothing more grueling in the country by US News & World stakeholders can be found where he would want to work.”
than a high school principal’s schedule.” Report and Newsweek. The publications made a daily impact with people inside
also placed Chamblee Charter in the top and outside the community—social
EDUCATION DEKALB FREE PRESS Friday, May 19, 2017 • Page 15

When it rains, it pours
County school district fails to address flooding
by R. Scott Belzer intrusion, parking lot and sidewalks have not been addressed.”
Another attempt to repair was made
On any rainy day in DeKalb County, during Christmas break in 2016, another
the lower hallway at Midvale Elementary— source states. By the time students returned
located at 3836 Midvale Road in Tucker— to school in January 2017, the problem had
shows its age. returned.
Despite outcry from the public, multiple By March 2017, a familiar problem was
requests for maintenance from Principal being reported at Midvale on a regular
Deborah Satterfield and others, as well basis—a problem Lunde says never went
as a professional assessment conducted in away.
2015, the lower level of the school—built in “I received an email [on April 19]
1966—has regularly flooded for the past 18 regarding the ongoing flooding in the lower
months. hallway of Midvale Elementary School
The flooding occurs even though repairs when it rains,” Lunde said in an email sent
were made to Midvale in 2010 and further to DCSD board of education members,
facility upgrades were made in 2016. administrative officials, including
According to advocate and former superintendent Stephen Green. “It is now
school council member Kirk Lunde, 18 months since the building administrator
the issue has been on DCSD’s radar for requested repairs and the issue remains.”
far longer. In 2008, the school’s roof was According to the email, Satterfield, as
reported to leak and was not addressed well as parents, attempted to contact DCSD
until 2010, according to district documents. officials who said they would “try again
At the time, workers attributed the digging through the parking lot” to address
lower hallway flooding to an issue with the issue.
the roof where two parts of Midvale—the “Why is this acceptable? Who is
main building and its two-story addition— responsible for this? Is it the regional
combine, according to Lunde. The two- superintendent or the operations Midvale Elementary School, located at 3836 Midvale Road in Tucker, has been
story addition was built in 1968. department?” Lunde’s email asks. experiencing water leaks for the past 18 months, a problem that has persisted
on and off since 2008. Photos submitted.
He said the local PTA was told the As of press time, no response had
repair came with a 20-year warranty. After been given to Lunde, though he received
the 2010 repair, the flooding stopped. a response from DCSD chief academic
By October 2015, the problem returned. officer Lisa Martin in September 2016 on
“Apparently, the current thinking is the behalf of chief operations officer Joshua
water is entering from somewhere else,” Williams.
Lunde said in an email exchange with “In 2012, the District’s facilities
DCSD officials expressing his concern. maintenance workforce was drastically
“Even though the [2015] facility condition reduced by 52% due to budget cuts,”
assessment (FCA) identified the roof as Martin said. “As a result, the District’s
needing repairs.” gross square footage per maintenance
The FCA report referenced by Lunde FTE increased drastically and our service
also states, “the low-slope roof deck is levels substantially declined to a Level
not adequate for rain water to drain 5 (or Crisis Response)… In an effort to
toward roof drains, creating ponding and improve our service quality to all schools,
eventually seeping into the building…Roof a formal Request for Proposals (RFP) for
covering was replaced in 2010, however, Facilities Maintenance (FM) Services was
there is a crease on the north side where issued in support of the Superintendent’s
there is a need of an expansion joint on the Board-approved Regional Decentralization
roof covering before further bubbling or Plan. The purpose of this RFP is to procure
tear of the roof membrane.” a qualified vendor to supplement the
This led to Midvale receiving another District’s existing facility maintenance staff
repair in the summer of 2016 with in order reduce our gross square feet per
E-SPLOST IV, which included air- maintenance FTE and more aggressively
conditioning, kitchen equipment, roofing address the $1 billion in current deferred
and restroom upgrades. The repairs were maintenance needs as identified in
spurred by Satterfield filing a maintenance the District’s 2015 Facilities Condition
request with the school district in October Assessment.”
2015. The Champion received a similar
The Midvale School Council also response in August following multiple
spurred maintenance after meeting with complaints regarding multiple school
DCSD regional superintendent Trenton facilities. Lunde said this is consistent with
Arnold following a public request from the district.
Lunde at the school district’s February 2016 “Parents occasionally ask me if I know
board meeting. of any progress—I’m trying to forget the
“The Midvale school council president whole thing because it is obvious the
and I raised this issue, and others, at the administration has favorite or preferred
board meeting and the administration schools,” Lunde said. “Midvale is not on
sent Mr. Arnold to meet with the council,” that list. The hypocrisy is too much for me
Lunde said. “Most issues were addressed to deal with. That is their strategy—ignore
and repairs were made. The water stakeholders until they give up.”
BUSINESS DEKALB FREE PRESS Friday, May 19, 2017 • Page 16

Mentors make a difference for new businesses
by Kathy Mitchell Moving Systems, a business along than a lot of the Start: Me White said. He added, “When
started in 2013 by Antonio businesses, but we were ready the person has the chance to
“Most of us have probably Brown and Jehan Spann. to take the business to the next sits and chat with a banker, for
at some point thought about “We had both worked for level. Eventually, we want to example, he sees the banker is
starting a business, but we’ve several large moving companies. have multiple locations. Rick not a big, bad, scary person. He
been held back by uncertainties I met Jehan when we had a has already run a business like wants to work with you to help
and fears,” said Rick White mutual client,” Brown recalled. that so he was a very valuable you succeed. In the end, the
of White Brothers Auto Parts. “We became friends and one resource. He shared information person is more knowledgeable
White is a volunteer mentor day he asked me, ‘Have you on creating a human resources and more confident—that
with Start: Me, a program in ever thought of starting your manual, compliance with may be all he or she needs to
which colleges, businesses and own business?’ I had; and government agencies and succeed.”
foundations work together to working together we got off to a warehousing supplies. He even “The dedicated mentors are
support small businesses in their good start. Our first client was helped me build my sales skills,” one factor that really makes
early stages of development. [comedian and game show host] he added. Start: Me stand out from
“Starting a business is Steve Harvey. Last year, we The mentor’s main other business acceleration White
difficult in today’s environment. decided we wanted to take our responsibility is to help the new programs,” said Spann, who
Large established businesses business to the next level and business owner navigate the was among those who spoke Agnes Scott College. “They are
have a great advantage in terms Jehan applied to Start: Me.” sometimes complex, confusing for participating businesses at generous with their time and
of access to capital and other During the 14-week and frightening business world, the May 4 Start: Me program at information.”
resources,” observed White, program, mentors meet
whose family business was regularly with the business
started by his grandfather in owners they are matched with. NOTICE OF PUBLIC HEARINGS ON THE 2017-2018 PROPOSED BUDGET FOR THE
1946. “He returned from World “If there is a bricks-and-mortar CITY OF DECATUR, GEORGIA
War II and started a business building, we might meet there,
that has lasted for three, really but we might go to lunch or There will be public hearings on the proposed 2017-2018 budget for the City of Decatur at 7:30 p.m. on
June 5, 2017 and, at 7:30 p.m. on June 19, 2017 in the City Commission Meeting Room at City Hall, 509
four generations, because my meet at the person’s home,” N. McDonough Street, Decatur. The proposed budget is summarized below and is available in its entirety
children are now involved in the White explained. “Many owners for public inspection at Decatur City Hall and at the Decatur Library on Sycamore Street. After May 17th,
business.” of microbusinesses (with no the budget will be available on the City’s website at All citizens are invited to
White said a friend from more than four employees) attend the public hearings, to provide written and oral comments, and ask questions concerning the entire
his years at Emory University, know exactly what they want budget.
FY 2017-2018
Brian Goebel, got him involved to do; they just have questions
in Start: Me. “Brian is the kind on how to accomplish what PROPOSED GENERAL FUND REVENUES AND EXPENDITURES
of person you never want to they have in mind. Others are Taxes 20,079,310
lose touch with. He’s a great guy still exploring. I don’t like to Licenses, Permits & Inspections 1,035,400
and he always has something tell anyone what to do with his Penalties, Fines & Forfeitures 1,020,000
interesting going. When he told or her business, but if I see the Charges for Current Services 1,856,660
me about Start: Me, I was very person doing something that Intergovernmental Revenues 428,800
Miscellaneous Revenue 107,500
excited and wanted to be part of could damage the business Sale of Fixed Assets 10,000
it,” White recalled. in the long run, I feel I have a Operating Transfers (521,110)
In a process White described responsibility to point it out. Appropriation From (To) Fund Balance 1,180,030
as being “like speed dating,” At the same time, if I see the TOTAL REVENUES $25,196,590
business owners in each year’s person failing to do something EXPENDITURES
Governmental Control Department 187,350
Start: Me class meet potential that could really benefit the General Government Department 1,931,690
mentors. Choices are narrowed business, I’ll say, ‘Hey, you could Community & Economic Development Department 2,275,640
until entrepreneurs are matched be missing an great opportunity Administrative Services Department 4,107,210
with primary and secondary here.’” Police Department 5,801,080
mentors. Spann said White and Fire & Rescue Department 3,538,840
Public Works Department 3,304,470
During the most recent Breedon provided exactly what Design, Environment & Construction Division 1,815,790
Start: Me session, White and he was looking for to continue Active Living Division 2,234,520
retired banker and CPA Joe developing United Moving TOTAL EXPENDITURES $25,196,590
Breedon worked with United Systems. “We were further
CLASSIFIED DEKALB FREE PRESS Friday, May 19, 2017 • Page 17

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SPORTS DEKALB FREE PRESS Friday, May 19, 2017 • Page 18

Southwest DeKalb’s Terryon Conwell won the 200-meter dash, while his twin brother Terry Marist won its third Class AAAA state title in five seasons.
finished third.

Cedar Grove, Marist boys win state track and field titles
medals—silver in the 100-meter dash The Panthers were led by the seniors
by Carla Parker (10.73) and bronze in the 200-meter and Mississippi State signees Terry dash (21.99). Terrence Lewin finished and Terryon Conwell, who won all
second in the 400-meter dash (49.66) of the sprint events. Terryon won
The Cedar Grove Saints and and the 4x100 relay team finished the 100-meter dash (10.83) and
Marist War Eagles are state track and third with a time of 42.23. the 200-meter dash (21.68). Terry
field champions for a third time in Marist won its third Class finished third in the 200 with a time
their program’s history. AAAA state title in five seasons after of 21.86 and won the 400-meter
The Saints won their third outscoring Sandy Creek 70.50 to 51. (47.59).
consecutive Class AAA state title The War Eagles were led by Class The Conwell twins, along with
after scoring 68 points in the final AAAA highest point scorer senior Marcellus Boykins and Justin
day of the three-day meet to outscore Brian Faust, who won gold in the Tomlin finished second in the 4x100
Westminster 71-66. Westminster 400-meter dash (47.51) and gold in relay with a time of 41.27. The four
entered the last day of the meet as the the 800-meter run (1:54.68). were disqualified from the 4x400 race
leader with 49 points, while Cedar Sophomore Leif Anderson won after one of the twins false-started.
Grove was tied at 26th place with gold in the 1600-meter run (4:20.39), The false-start came after the runners
three points. while his teammate, junior Knox were told to stand up due to noise
The Saints were led by sophomore Pittman, finished second (4:21.66). from the audience.
Jadon Hazelwood, who won gold in Anderson also finished second in the The noise came from the twins’
the 110-meter hurdles with a time of 3200-meter run (9:33.92). the 4x100 uncle, who was cheering loudly for his
14.52. Hazelwood also placed third relay team finished third with a time nephews from the stands. When the
in the 300-meter hurdles (39.90). The of 42.85. runners were back in the set position,
4x400 relay team also brought home In Class AAAAA, two-time one of the twins jumped early, causing
a gold medal after winning the race defending champions Southwest Southwest DeKalb to be disqualified
with a time of 3:19.89. DeKalb finished second with 51 from the race.
Junior Israel Spivey won two points behind Cedar Shoals (71). Tucker’s Antonia Frazier won the Class AAAAAA
100-meter hurdles. Photo by Carla Parker

Other Top 3 individual finishers Miller Grove girls’ 4x400 relay team—silver 1) Marist (70.50 points)
Miller Grove’s Emoni Coleman—800-meter Class AAAAAA 13) St. Pius X (26 points)
Class AAAAAAA (gold) Boys 34) Druid Hills (2 points)
Lakeside’s Brian Herron—200-meter (silver), Miller Grove’s Emoni Coleman—1600-meter 18) M.L. King (10 points)
400-meter (silver) (silver 20) Tucker (9 Points) Girls
Lakeside’s Morgan Mihalis—3200-meter 24) Stephenson (7 points) 5) Marist (49 points)
(bronze) Class AAAA 22) St. Pius X 9
Marist’s Kathleen Maley—1600-meter (gold) Girls 29) Druid Hills (2 points)
Class AAAAAA Marist’s girls’ 4x400 relay team (silver) 5) Tucker (32 points)
Stephenson girls’ 4x400 relay team—silver Marist’s Josie Wirtz—3200-meter (gold) 11) M.L. King (11 points) Class AAA
Tucker girls’ 4x100 relay team—bronze 27) Stephenson (8 points) Boys
Tucker’s Antonia Frazier—100-meter hurdles Class A-Private 27) Dunwoody (8 points) 1) Cedar Grove (71 points)
(gold) Paideia’s Griffin McCauley—3200-meter (gold) 23) Redan (9 points)
Tucker’s Kaylah Lumsden—100-meter dash Paideia’s Griffin McCauley—1600-meter (silver) Class AAAAA
(silver) Paideia’s Sophia West—3200-meter (silver) Boys Girls
2) Southwest DeKalb (51 points) 11) Cedar Grove (17.50 points)
Class AAAAA Wheelchair 8) Decatur (23 points) 18) Stone Mountain (8 points)
Arabia Mountain’s Michael Willingham—discus Lakeside’s Chance Boyd—200-meter (silver) 9) Arabia Mountain (22 points) 27) Redan (3 points)
throw (bronze) Lakeside’s Chance Boyd—800-meter (bronze) 16) Miller Grove (12 points)
Arabia Mountain boys’ 4x100 relay team— 33) Chamblee (4 points) Class A-Private
bronze Teams standings for DeKalb County teams Boys
Miller Grove boys’ 4x400 relay team—bronze Girls 10) Paideia (25 points)
Miller Grove’s Fereday Chipere—300-meter Class AAAAAAA 5) Miller Grove (42 points)
hurdles (bronze) Boys 16) Arabia Mountain (14 points) Girls
Decatur’s Sam Ellis—800-meter (gold) 13) Lakeside (21 points) 25) Chamblee (7 points) 12) Paideia (16 Points)
Decatur’s Sam Ellis—1600-meter (gold)
Arabia Mountain’s Patra Williams—high jump Girls Class AAAA Wheelchair
(gold) 24) Lakeside (6 points) Boys 3) Lakeside (14 points)
SPORTS DEKALB FREE PRESS Friday, May 19, 2017 • Page 19

The St. Pius X Lady Golden Lions won their third consecutive Class AAAA state title over rival Marist. Photo by John Silas

Clarkston’s Angoras were runners-up in the Class AAAAA title game after falling to McIntosh 2-1. Photo by Travis Hudgons

St. Pius bests rival Marist in third
consecutive soccer championship
Clarkston, Druid Hills fall in overtime
by Carla Parker win and eighth in nine seasons for the Hills’ penalty kick tied the game at with a nearly 30-foot goal by Lionel program. 2-2 with 32:44 left, but the Red Devils Tourodo with 25:12 left in the first half.
St. Pius senior forward Caroline could not get the ball in the net the rest McIntosh responded later in the half on
A late second half goal was all it Orman scored the only goal of the of the game. The Red Devils finished a header by Dylan Keysar off a corner
took for the St. Pius X Lady Golden game with 7:23 left to play in the game. their season with a 16-7 record. kick to tie the game at 1-1.
Lions to win their third consecutive The Lady Golden Lions finished the The Clarkston Angoras also fell in The game went into double overtime
Class AAAA state title over rival season 22-1-1. double overtime. when McIntosh’s Logan Brown scored
Marist. Druid Hills fell 3-2 to Southeast Clarkston lost 2-1 to McIntosh off a corner kick by Jacob Donaldson
St. Pius X defeated Marist 1-0 on Whitfield in double overtime May in the boys’ Class AAAAA state May to seal the championship for McIntosh.
May 13 at McEachern High School. The 13 in the Class AAAA title game at 12 at Mercer University in Macon. Clarkston finished the season with a
win was the fifth consecutive state title McEachern High School. A Druid The Angoras got on the board first 19-2-1 record.
LOCAL DEKALB FREE PRESS Friday, May 19, 2017 • Page 20

MARTA brings development to Chamblee
“It was challenging. It’s a MARTA lot so
by Horace Holloman there’s certain things that they have to do differently than just a private property owner
would do, but they were great partners to
Chamblee Mayor Eric Clarkson said he’s work with,” Clarkson said. “Good things come
excited that the city will have its first “Class to those who wait. We did have to wait and
A” office project after officials with MARTA Chamblee has some tougher design standards
and Pattillo Industrial Real Estate held a than other communities, but we’re sticking to
groundbreaking ceremony for a $25 million our vision.”
project named Trackside. Trackside is one of three TOD projects
Trackside, located adjacent to the Chamblee currently under construction by MARTA.
MARTA station parking lot at the intersection MARTA general manager and CEO Keith
of Peachtree Road and Chamblee Tucker Road, Parker said the company has continued to grow
is being developed by Parkside Partners and over the years.
Pattillo Industrial Real Estate.   “This is more than just a transit system.
The transit-oriented development (TOD) will We hope to move forward and bring in new
feature two buildings with roughly 70,000 square developments and companies. We’re creating
feet of office space, 10,000 square feet of retail our own model and working hard with the
space and 4,3000 square feet of green space. development community and with elected
Clarkson said this type of development fits officials,” Parker said.
into the Chamblee model. The development is scheduled for completion
“It’s very exciting and hopefully this shows in spring of 2018. Parker said Trackside can help
others that they can build office space here,” MARTA’s brand moving forward.
Clarkson said after Trackside’s groundbreaking “This is wonderful for us and our customers.
ceremony. “To get people to work down here These are customers who we don’t have to do
that use the transit and use MARTA to get anything for. We don’t have to provide parking
to work is going to be a great transformative for them because they’re already here [near
project for the city.” Chamblee MARTA station] and they already
There were delays associated with the project, know the transit system so they can walk out
in part because of environmental issues at the their front door onto the train,” Parker said.
site. Clarkson said the project was well worth the “These are the gold standard of customers when
wait. you can do this type of development.” On May 10, the city of Chamblee and MARTA officials held a groundbreaking
ceremony for Trackside, a transit oriented development located adjacent to the
Chamblee station MARTA rail line.

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