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

and Stone Mountain.



Girl Scout leaders say 100-year-old organization beneficial for today’s girls
by Kathy Mitchell


middle-aged Savannah socialite, called “Daisy” by friends and family, started 1911 with many uncertainties before her. Her husband had died while she was in the process of divorcing him and had left the bulk of his fortune to another woman. She had no children. An infection in one ear and damage to other—caused when a grain of rice thrown at her wedding had lodged there—left her almost deaf. On a trip to England Juliette Gordon Low found the inspiration for a new direction for her life. In 1912 she returned to Savannah where she made a historic telephone call to a relative. Excitedly she told her cousin, “I’ve got something for the girls of Savannah, and all of America, and all the world, and we’re going to start it tonight!” On March 12, 1912, Low gathered 18 girls and invited them to join American Girl Guides. Her niece, who also was called Daisy, was the first registered member of the organization that would become the Girl Scouts of America. Although Low died 15 years after its founding, the organization continued to grow and flourish. Celebrating its 100th anniversary this year, the Girl Scouts of America reports having more than 3.7 million members, making it the largest educational organization for girls in the world. The council that serves DeKalb County, Girl Scouts of Greater

Girl Scout troop 26408 works on a project at the Lithonia home of advisor Shawanda Cobb. Pictured from left are Jade Campbell, Carrie Smith, Jayna Gaudet, advisor April Smith, Tanner Rice, Sydnie Cobb, advisor Joan Gaudet, Aliya Sealey, Jessica Stallings and Dhinsa Davis.

Atlanta Inc., is composed of approximately 41,500 girls and more than 18,000 adult members. Many notice the Girl Scouts only during their famous annual cookie sales drive. But those who work with the Scouts are quick to explain that there is much more to the organization. Decatur resident Margaret Paschal has been associated with the Girl Scouts for more than half its history. Joining as a Brownie in second grade in 1952, Pascal said she can’t recall when she wasn’t excited about scouting. “My favorite
See Girls on Page 13A

In recognition of her more than 35 years of service to the Girl Scouts, Margaret Paschal, right, is presented with her own parking space at the scout office. Girl Scout Emma Allison, left, made the ceramic sign. Her mom, Laurie Allison, center, was a Senior Girl Scout when Paschal first came to work for the Girl Scout Council.

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The Champion Free Press, Friday, March 9, 2012

DeKalb County School Board member Tom Bowen, from left, Chairman Eugene Walker and Superintendent Cheryl Atkinson look over Atkinson’s action plan at a recent meeting to correct a $41.35 million SPLOST budget shortfall.

DCSS discovers $41 million budget shortfall for SPLOST projects
by Daniel Beauregard Woods said, they also found deficits based on “finance issues, anticipated revenue from the state that will not come in on time, and SPLOST II closeout issues.” The total shortfall is $41.35 million—$510,000

School Board member Nancy Jester expresses her concerns about the recent shortfall, left, and a member of the DCSS Operations and Finance Division discusses how officials discovered it. Photos by Daniel Beauregard

projects in 2007. Also, due to a timing issue the system will not collect an anticipated $4.73 million in reimburseDeKalb School Superintendent Cheryl Atkinments from the Georgia Department of Education. son urged board members to approve a plan that Officials said that revenue will be collected over would put 35 construction projthe next two years but it doesn’t ects on hold after school officials meet the timetable to be allocated recently discovered a $41 million to SPLOST III. SPLOST budget shortfall. “If we do not move forward Cumulative Budget Shortfalls Atkinson presented her plan at with the corrective action plan, a special board of education meetthe school district may face adSummary of Shortfalls: ing on Feb. 29. The plan called ditional costs incurred across all for balancing the budget shortfalls current SPLOST III projects and • SPLOST II Close-out Funds ($0.51M) for the Special Option Local Sales further delay of the Chamblee • SPLOST III Financing ($26.15M) Tax (SPLOST) II and III projects High School replacement project,” by reallocating funds and “adjustAtkinson said. She also called for • GA DOE Reimbursements: ($4.73M) ing” 113 of 210 SPLOST III projan immediate external audit of the • Chamblee Replacement Cost ($9.96M) ects. finances of the school system. Among the adjustments preSome board members were reTotal Shortfall: ($41.35M) sented was the halting of 35 luctant to support Atkinson’s plan SPLOST III projects, including without first discussing it and prothe installation of new HVAC posing changes. Board member units, running tracks and other Nancy Jester said she couldn’t improvement projects for schools throughout the attributed to accounting and over-budgeting from support the plan because she was “hard-pressed” to county. SPLOST II projects. The rest of the shortfall comes vote for a resolution that included continuing with DeKalb County School spokesman Walter from issues involving SPLOST III and the Chamthe William Bradley Bryant Center while “we don’t Woods said the shortfall was discovered when ofblee High School replacement project. fix our dangerous tracks that we just recently promficials realized construction on the new Chamblee Officials said there was a shortfall of $26.15 ised the community.” High School was approximately $10 million over million from SPLOST III because finances weren’t “I am livid. I am furious beyond belief because budget. allocated to cover interest payments or bond prethis hurts both kids and taxpayers. I am mad and I As officials were checking into that oversight, miums for the $300 million borrowed to jumpstart do believe there’s been sand thrown in the umpire’s
See SPLOST on Page 3A

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The Champion Free Press, Friday, March 9, 2012

Simola Nayak, left, won the District 4 spelling bee on Feb. 25 and will participate in the her second state spelling bee on March 16. Photo by Andrew Cauthen

Henderson Middle student wins district spelling bee
“Hobbledehoy.” That was the winning word in the District 4 spelling bee on Feb. 25 in which the top three spots went to DeKalb students. Simola Nayak, an eighth-grader at Henderson Middle School won the bee and will go on to the state spelling bee on March 16. This was Nayak’s fourth time participating in the district bee and second time winning. “There is a very strong possibility that she will walk off with state,” said Susan Tallant, the spelling bee coordinator for District

eyes, and we’re the umpire,” Jester said. Both Jester and Board Vice Chairman Tom Bowen said the board votes on the facts presented to it, and in this case the board clearly wasn’t presented with solid facts according to Jester and Bowen. “The board approves the things that come before it based on the validity of the data and by law cannot be involved in the day-to-day activities of the district. Therefore there is no mechanism for a board member to find out the kind of details that are being brought to us now to cast an accurate vote,” Bowen said. Some members also expressed dismay and said the issues that have been brought to light had most likely derailed all the work the board had done in the past to build public confidence in the SPLOST program.

SPLOST Continued From Page 2A

“If we have gone anywhere in building any good will in the way SPLOST is managed I think we—as Mr. Bowen said—may have certainly undone that. It’s very, very bothersome to me,” board member Don McChesney said. Board Chairman Eugene Walker told board members it was important to keep in mind “no money had been misplaced and nothing egregious occurred.” “They didn’t have in place a funding mechanism for the projects so they borrowed money. Now, the bill is coming due and we need to figure out a way to pay for it. So, let’s not mix apples and oranges here,” Walker said. The board scheduled a meeting to discuss Atkinson’s corrective action plan and officials said a special meeting will be scheduled to vote on the plan.

On March 2, 2012 (the “Closing Date”), the Georgia Department of Banking and Finance closed Global Commerce Bank, Doraville, Georgia 30340 (the “Failed Institution”) and appointed the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation as Receiver (the “Receiver”) to handle all matters relating to the Failed Institution. TO THE CREDITORS OF THE FAILED INSTITUTION All creditors having claims against the Failed Institution must submit their claims in writing, together with proof of the claims, to the Receiver on or before June 6, 2012 (the “Claims Bar Date”). Claims may be submitted via the internet on the FDIC web site, by fax or by mail to the following address: FDIC as Receiver of Global Commerce Bank 7777 Baymeadows Way West, Jacksonville, FL 32256 Attention: Claims Agent You can obtain an official Proof of Claim form and instructions at or by calling (904) 256-3925. Under federal law, failure to file a claim on or before the Claims Bar Date will result in disallowance of the claim by the Receiver. The disallowance will be final. 12 U.S.C. Section 1821(d)(5)(C). NOTE TO CLASS CLAIMANTS: By law, the Receiver will not accept a claim filed on behalf of a proposed class of individuals or entities or a class of individuals or entities certified by a court. EACH individual or entity must file a separate claim with the Receiver. TO THE DEPOSITORS OF THE FAILED INSTITUTION The Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation, which insures your deposits in its corporate capacity (the “FDIC”), arranged for the transfer of all deposits (“Deposits”) - including the uninsured amounts - at the Failed Institution to another insured depository institution, Metro City Bank, Doraville, Georgia 30340 (the “New Institution”). This arrangement should minimize any inconvenience from the closing of the Failed Institution. You may leave your Deposits in the New Institution, but you must take action to claim ownership of your Deposits. Federal law, 12 U.S.C. Section 1822(e), requires you to claim ownership of (“claim”) your Deposits at the New Institution by taking any of the following actions within 18 months from the Closing Date. If you have more than one account, your action in claiming your Deposit in one account will automatically claim your Deposits in all of your accounts. 1.Make a deposit to or withdrawal from your account(s). This includes writing a check on any account, having an automated direct deposit credited to or an automated withdrawal debited from any account or closing the account; 2.Execute a new signature card on your account(s), enter into a new deposit agreement with the New Institution, change the ownership on your account(s), or renegotiate the terms of your certificate of deposit account(s) (if any); 3.Provide the New Institution with a completed change of address form; or 4.Write to the New Institution and notify it that you wish to keep your account(s) active with the New Institution. Please be sure to include the name of the account(s), the account number(s), the signature of an authorized signer on the account(s) and a name and address. Please be advised that Official Items issued by the Failed Institution, e.g., cashier’s checks, dividend checks, interest checks, expense checks, and money orders are all considered to be Deposits and must be claimed within 18 months from the Closing Date. If you do not claim ownership of your Deposits at the New Institution within 18 months from the Closing Date, federal law requires the New Institution to return your Deposits to the FDIC, which may be required to deliver them as unclaimed property to the State indicated in your address on the Failed Institution’s records. 12 U.S.C. Section 1822(e). If your address is outside of the United States, the FDIC may be required to deliver the Deposits to the State in which the Failed Institution had its main office. If the State accepts custody of your Deposits, you will have 10 years from the date of delivery to claim your Deposits from the State. After 10 years, you will be permanently barred from claiming your Deposits. If the State does not take custody of your Deposits after the 18-month period, you may claim your Deposits from the FDIC until the receivership of the Failed Institution is terminated. A receivership may be terminated at any time. Once the receivership terminates, you will not be able to claim your Deposits.

4. “She’s that good.” The second-place winner for the district was Andalib Malit, an eighth grader at Renfroe Middle School. Noah Covey, a fifth grader at Dunwoody Elementary School, won third place.

Silent Auction & Party
Sample foods from DeKalb’s best restaurants. Bid on food, art, theatre, services, travel, clothing, jewelry and other great items.

March 23 6-8:30 P.M. Old Courthouse 101 E. Court Square,Decatur.

and Annual Meeting

s rinks plu &D ree Foodas a week in F h items suc to bid on! s are Jamaica donation
fundraise This is aated. appreci r,

The Champion Free Press, Friday, March 9, 2012

Jim Young: A man to count on
he was a minister of finance. While he had more than 40 years in banking experience, his true gift was his love of people and how he used his fiscal acumen to help people. We could count on him. Jim Young was a “p.k,” (a preacher’s kid) something we had in common and joked about. Among the numerous boards and social and civic organizations Jim was involved with, we also worked on the CEO’s Transition Committee. I last saw him last year when we served as speakers for a prayer breakfast at Antioch A.M.E. in Stone Mountain. His prayer for businesses was powerful and heartfelt. One could hear the preacher’s passion in his pleading to the Master. Jim Young was not your ordinary businessman. His business acumen was deeply rooted in the Golden Rule: “Love thy neighbor as thyself.” It made him successful. It made him admired. It made him respected and loved in return. Under Jim Young’s leadership, Citizens Trust Bank became one of the largest minority-owned banks in the Southeast. Its assets grew from $128.5 million the year before the merger with First Southern, which Jim headed to $385.3 million by latest reported figures. While Young’s death leaves a void in the banking world, his passing leaves a greater void in our hearts – the aspiring entrepreneur, the widow on a fixed income, a struggling single parent, or a successful business person – we could all count on Jim Young to understand our situation. What can we do to carry on Jim’s love of community and give honor to his legacy? Check on his family from time to time. They’ll need us individually when the collective crowds are gone. Stop smoking or don’t start. Jim couldn’t quit. Commit to supporting the beloved community with our gifts as he did. Finally support Citizens Trust as Jim did us. Steen Miles, The Newslady, is a retired journalist and former Georgia state senator. Contact Steen Milies at

Opinion The Newslady

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The metro Atlanta community and the banking world have lost a giant of a man. Jim Young, succumbed to the ravages of cancer. His homegoing service was held at St. Philips AME March 3. Officials of Citizen’s Trust Bank where he was president and CEO pledged to carry on his legacy. That’s a tall order, and they certainly have their work cut out for them. Jim Young was not just a banker;

The Champion Free Press, Friday, March 9, 2012

Welcome to Brookhaven Ashford Brookwood???
pop phenomenon of the past decade of new municipalities in Fulton and DeKalb counties. I do understand, as well as appreciate the desires for local control and more responsive government shared by the creators of Sandy Springs, Dunwoody, Chattahoochee Hills and Peachtree Corners to name a few. I can also relate to the want/need for a more cohesive community which “A rose by any other name is just can come from having an identity, as sweet.” – Georgia State House Majority Ed Lindsey (R-54, Atlanta), name and even a “brand.” I’m also aware of the sentiments quoting Shakespeare, with a bit of that some of these new cities serve as tongue in cheek, after proposing a something akin to monster-sized gated substitute name for the proposed communities, and some of the division City of Brookhaven in north DeKalb is driven, at least in part by issues of County. race, class and a changing of the guard As a native of DeKalb County, I was born not too far from where I now in DeKalb’s and Fulton’s power structures. Which brings me, belatedly, live—in what was once the city of to the proposed city of Brookhaven. Scottdale. Our little 3.5-square-mile There is a small and beatific conclave unincorporated burg of nearly 10,000 surrounding the Capital City Country is wedged neatly between Clarkston, Club, with some of metro Atlanta and Decatur and Avondale Estates—a triangle slice largely tracing Ponce de even Buckhead’s most impressive homes and priciest real estate. That Leon Avenue as it heads west toward is Historic Brookhaven, a neighborDecatur. Scottdale was named after hood with well-defined boundaries Colonel George Washington Scott, who relocated here from Florida after stretching from Peachtree-Dunwoody Road on the west, Windsor Parkway an unsuccessful run there for govto the north, Mabry Drive to the east, ernor. Scott and his family founded and Peachtree Road to the south. Inthe Scottdale Mills (which closed in terestingly, most of those folks want 1982) and were major benefactors to Agnes Scott College. Scott Boulevard to remain in an unincorporated part of Buckhead, which itself is an unincoris named in their honor. porated portion of the city of Atlanta. As a metro Atlantan, I have paid The proposed city of Brookhaven much more than casual attention to the would swallow most of northwestern DeKalb County above I-85 at North Druid Hills Road, west toward Dunwoody, Buckhead and Peachtree Corners, engulfing several large commercial tracts (which now also generate significant tax revenues for unincorporated DeKalb). While I appreciate local residents’ desires for better and faster response times from emergency and public safety personnel, I don’t think it’s fair to remove large commercial and industrial areas, with infrastructure previously funded by the state and entire county, for the future benefit of any one municipality. In an interesting twist of fate, Ed Lindsey, a resident of Historic Brookhaven, proposed renaming the new city “Ashford” as in AshfordDunwoody Road, and in recognition of a prior historic community, Ashford, which existed in the now proposed city of Brookhaven. Rep. Lindsey who is known for his wry wit among other things, quoted the Bard on the naming of a rose, while making the legislative switch. State Rep. Mike Jacobs (R-80, Atlanta), and other proponents of the city of Brookhaven immediately cried “foul,” knowing among other things the potential real estate value and cache of extending the Brookhaven “brand” to such a significant and extended swath of real estate. Why do you think we have 36 streets in Fulton and DeKalb named “Peachtree?” However, though location, location, location may be the ultimate rule and measurement in real estate, the rules of engagement are a bit more complicated navigating the Georgia General Assembly, as well as an incorporation referendum with significant opposition, even from the county commissioner representing the impacted district. As a result a flood of alternative names have been discussed, including Ashford, Brookhaven Station and even Brookwood. But before a new city is named, or selected to place on a ballot asking the question about forming yet another layer of local government, clearer heads might first survey the residents of Ashford/Brookhaven/Brookwood about what improvements might best be made in the delivery of DeKalb County government services to try and keep them all in the family. Until then I also have my own preference for a name for this lovely area of my hometown—“North DeKalb County.” 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

Opinion One Man’s Opinion

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Let Us Know What You Think!
THE CHAMPION FREE PRESS encourages opinions from its readers. Please write to us and express your views. Letters should be brief, typewritten and contain the writer’s name, address and telephone number for verification. All letters will be considered for publication.
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Publisher: Dr. Earl D. Glenn Managing Editor: Kathy Mitchell News Editor: Robert Naddra Production Manager: Kemesha Hunt Graphic Designer: Travis Hudgons The Champion Free Press is published each Friday by ACE III Communications, Inc., 114 New Street, Suite E, Decatur, GA. 30030 Phone (404) 373-7779.

We sincerely appreciate the discussion surrounding this and any issue of interest to DeKalb County. The Champion was founded in 1991 expressly to provide a forum for discourse for all community residents on all sides of an issue. We have no desire to make the news only to report news and opinions to effect a more educated citizenry that will ultimately move our community forward. We are happy to present ideas for discussion; however, we make every effort to avoid printing information submitted to us that is known to be false and/or assumptions penned as fact.
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The Champion Free Press, Friday, March 9, 2012

Iraq takes it personally
Iraq is a gift that keeps on giving. We kicked out their murderous dictator for them, helped them institute democracy, poured hundreds of millions of dollars into their recovery, and tried our best to interrupt their civil war. Then we left — or at least our combat troops did. You would think they’d be grateful, wouldn’t you? I’m not talking about an end-of-World-War-II scene with young women throwing flowers at our soldiers as they departed. Not necessarily. But maybe a thank you would be appropriate. A salute or two wouldn’t hurt. What do we get instead? Snarls. Insults. Cries of “Don’t let the door hit you on the way out” (which is terrifying in Arabic). Now word comes that we’re being forced to cut our planned diplomatic presence in post-war Iraq by some 50 percent and counting. It turns out that the Iraqis don’t want us there. After all we did for them. Why, just the bombing of their cities alone would have cost them billions if they’d had to do it themselves. Admittedly, it’s a very large presence that we envisioned. There are some 16,000 at our embassy compound there now, 2,000 of them diplomats. To house them, the United States built a grandiose $750-million palace on a 104-acre campus in the Green Zone. That didn’t go down too well with the Iraqis. As one Iraqi lawmaker told The New York Times: “The U.S. had something on their mind when they made it so big. Perhaps they want to run the Middle East from Iraq, and their embassy will be a base for them here.” In any case the Iraqi government isn’t making it easy for us. They’ve been delaying our supply convoys at the border, making it difficult to get food to our employees. Why, the Times says that supplies at the dining hall ran so low the other day that they had to ration the chicken wings. Then there are those anonymous


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"Don't let the door hit you on the way out" is terrifying in Arabic
gunmen who keep shooting at Americans randomly. Our security personnel — often bearded, tattooed contractors — resemble the bad guys in a Brad Pitt movie and act that way. In 2007, remember, 17 Iraqi civilians were gunned down by private contractors, an incident Iraqis seemed to take personally (even though we apologized nicely). It reminds me a little of the early days of Iran’s regime. I was in Washington when Iranian students stormed our embassy in Tehran and took the staff hostage. It was an intolerable insult and all patriotic Americans were pretty incensed about it. But were the Iranian students studying in this country contrite? Not on your life. When we let the deposed Shah of Iran into United States to receive treatment for the disease that would soon kill him, Iranian exchange students took to the streets and marched to the White House, shouting (as nearly as any of us on the sidewalk could make out) “The Shah is a peanut butter.” I leaned over to a colleague and said: “Are they saying the Shah is a peanut butter?” “That’s what I heard,” he replied. We were outraged. These people were in the country at our sufferance (and perhaps even with our aid) and they had the nerve to march on our streets. I found myself waving a fist at them (one finger at a time) and yelling obscenities. So much for journalistic objectivity. But the passage of years has convinced me that those students had justice on their side. The Shah actually was a peanut butter, as were Saddam Hussein, Muammar Gaddafi, Hosni Mubarak and all the other brigands we supported at the expense of their people. The Times says that we’re not merely cutting the Iraq embassy staff. We’re abandoning our $500-million program to train Iraqi police (for the semi-hilarious reason that it’s too risky for our police advisers to leave the embassy compound). Mission accomplished all right. OtherWords columnist Donald Kaul lives in Ann Arbor, Michigan.
The following comments are pulled straight from our website and are not edited for content or grammar.

Opponents of Walmart at Suburban Plaza declare ‘war’
Look at that property right now. It is hardly increasing property values. Do the opponents wish to keep this monument to the 2008 recession? The market will not support more upscale restaurants and condo’s there. In reality, I think the Wal Mart development, if done right, can increase property values and bring more local convenient affordable shopping to nearby residents. –Thompson posted this on 3/2/12 at 8:36 a.m. If it crazy to keep a store from coming into the community when jobs a needed. If you don’ t like Walmart, then don’ t shop there, but there are countless people who will. I figure those who don’t want it are either union, or shop owners. –barbara posted this on 3/1/12 at 10:42 p.m. I’m not a fan of WalMart–but “war”–really? Do we want to be seen as community terrorists or rational people capable of expressing reasonable opinions and willing to take legal action if necessary? –Judy Mayer posted this on 3/1/12 at 2:35 p.m.

Upcoming election for Doraville council seat, DeKalb Sunday sales referendum
Doesnt it figure, the vote for Sunday liquor sales will be held for Unincorporated DeKalb will be held during the republican primary. How unfair. Most democrats dont know. And wont come out to vote. How ridiculous! And wrong. – Martha posted this on 3/2/12 at 7:29 p.m.

Foreclosure bill struck in committee
Mike Jacobs and Fran Millar slamming those less fortunate every chance they get. They both are nothing but “ BANKSTERS “ only looking out for the wealthy? –Juan Who Cares posted this on 3/1/12 at 4:39 p.m.

The Champion Free Press, Friday, March 9, 2012

Local News

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Commissioners pass budget with reservations
by Andrew Cauthen DeKalb County’s 2012 budget is set at $559 million and does not require a tax increase, but commissioners on both sides of the 4-3 vote have problems with the budget. The final budget passed on Feb. 28 restores some funds cut by DeKalb CEO Burrell Ellis in his budget recommendation, including $500,000 to repair roads, $363,000 for senior centers, $180,000 for a grand jury investigation into the county’s watershed department and funds to unfreeze six animal control officer positions. The commissioners also approved $2 million to cover the replacement of malfunctioning air masks used by the fire rescue department. Commissioners Larry Johnson, Sharon Barnes Sutton, Lee May and Stan Watson supported the budget, while commissioners Elaine Boyer, Kathie Gannon and Jeff Rader voted against it. In a statement released after the budget was passed, Ellis said he was “pleased” that the Board of Commissioners adopted a budget “largely based on his recommendations.” “This budget will allow us to maintain essential services, particularly those in public safety, while rebuilding our reserves to $30 million,” Ellis stated. Ellis said that “approval of the budget affirms the fidelity our four revenue projections.” “We look forward to receiving an official report on property values in a few months, wherein we will make any necessary adjustments to the budget at mid-year,” Ellis stated. Despite voting to approve the budget, some commissioners said they have reservations about those revenue predictions. May, who chairs the commissioners’ finance committee, said Ellis’ predictions of a 5 percent drop in tax income are “overly optimistic” and have been off for the past three years. In fact, home prices in the metro Atlanta area decreased 12.8 percent in 2011, according to the S&P/Case-Shiller Home Price Indices released Feb. 28 before the board passed its budget. Boyer, who voted against the budget said she could not “in good conscience” vote for a budget with faulty assumptions. “We are going to have a digest, which in the past three years has been wrong every single time, estimated at 5 percent [decrease],” Boyer said. “Last year it was 12 percent. “All you’ve got to do is drive around DeKalb County and see the empty buildings, storefronts, homes foreclosed,” Boyer said. “We’ve made assumptions on 5 percent, when last year it was 12 percent? That’s not good planning.”

Irvine Weekes
side with them on whatever job they’re doing that day,” said Cindi Johnson, executive director of the organization. “It’s two men hanging out talking. It’s a real relationship, a friendship. “This is a very intimate relationship,” Johnson said. Side by Side volunteers must have a lot of patience and be available during the day, Johnson said. “It takes a special kind of person to involve himself in that challenge,” said Weekes, 65, who is currently studying health administration. “I am glad to be able to help.” Side by Side also “allows society to make use of all the money it invests in saving a life,” Weekes said. Weekes said volunteering at Side by Side has helped him “grow outside of [his] normally selfish interests,” Weekes said. “I think my relationship here has been better for me than it has been for the members.” A semi-retired businessman who most recently owned a towing company, Weekes and Vilma, his wife of 47 years, have three children and four grandchildren. Weekes is a member of the Episcopal Church of the Holy Cross in Decatur, where he sings in the chancel and contemporary choirs. He is also a former Sunday school teacher at the church.

Champion of the Week

When fellow members of Rotary Club of Stone Mountain suggested that Irvine Weekes donate his time to Side by Side Brain Injury Clubhouse, he followed their recommendation. “My Rotary Club thought I would be a good representative of the club,” said Weekes, who has been volunteering at Side by Side since June 2011. “We actually look for worthwhile projects to support. We always do that quietly.” Side by Side Brain Injury Clubhouse, located on Main Street in Stone Mountain, is a 12-yearold nonprofit organization that helps victims of brain injuries. “This organization succeeds in making people functional and appreciate their new level of functionality,” said Weekes, who volunteers at the clubhouse once a week. At Side by Side, Weekes is a clubhouse buddy, a volunteer who builds a relationship with one or two members. “He works side by

If you would like to nominate someone to be considered as a future Champion of the Week, please contact Kathy Mitchell at or at 404-373-7779, ext. 104.

The Champion Free Press, Friday, March 9, 2012

Local News

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Defendant, Hemy Neuman, center, sits between his defense lawyers, Bob Rubin, left, and Doug Peters during his trial on Feb. 24 in the courtroom of DeKalb County Superior Court Judge Gregory Adams. Neuman is accused of murder in the November 2010 killing of Russell Sneiderman. Neuman claimed he was told by an angel to kill Sneiderman in November 2010 and raise his two children as his own, defense lawyer Doug Peters said. (AP Photo/Atlanta Journal-Constitution, John Spink)

Neuman trial:
by Andrew Cauthen The murder trial of Hemy Neuman took a dramatic turn with a courtroom kiss and embrace between Andrea Sneiderman and a longtime friend who was a witness. The action, which got Sneiderman banned from the courthouse for the remainder of the trial, became the impetus for the Neuman defense team to ask for a mistrial on Feb. 29. “Andrea Sneiderman is playing each and every one of us for a fool,” said Doug Peters, an attorney for Neuman, who is pleading not guilty by reason of insanity for the November 2010 killing of 36-year-old Russell Sneiderman. Russell Sneiderman, an entrepreneur, died after being shot several times outside Dunwoody Prep daycare, where he had dropped off his 2-year-old son. Neuman was the supervisor of Andrea Sneiderman, Russell’s wife, at GE Energy in Marietta. Both the defense and prosecution are trying to prove that Neuman and Andrea Sneiderman were having an affair. Peters, in his motion for a mistrial, told Judge Gregory A. Adams that Shayna Citron, Sneiderman’s friend, should be allowed to tell the jury what Sneiderman said to

Prosecution rests, defense seeks to prove client’s insanity
her in the hall after the courtroom kiss. Citron had testified earlier that she believed Sneiderman and Neuman were having an affair. Peters said Citron was told by Sneiderman “she was no longer her friend because of what she had testified to.” “Ms. Citron responded, ‘I had to tell the truth,’” Peters said. “Andrea Sneiderman responded ‘then I have to do what I have to do.’” Citron told the judge, after the jury was gone, that she considered that statement “a veiled threat.” Adams refused to grant a mistrial or allow Citron to recount the incident to the jury. After the prosecution rested its case on Feb. 29, the defense team began trying to prove that Neuman was insane at the time of the shooting. Neuman’s sister, Monique Metsch, testified about the abuse she and her brother endured from their father, a Holocaust survivor. “We were always nervous at 6 p.m. when my father was coming [home],” Metsch said. “There was always going to be fights or screaming. He was just a very angry man.” Metsch testified that her father was “erratic in his outbursts” and consumed much alcohol. He would “start with one or two scotches when he got home,” Metsch said. Their father was very strict and liked order, Metsch said. But he was also abusive. The “slaps were continuous,” Metsch said. “He once shoved vegetable soup down my nose.” Psychologist Adriana Flores, who spent nine hours over several days evaluating Neuman, testified that he was bipolar and manic. “The symptom that caused him the most distress was depression,” Flores testified, based on an evaluation of Neuman seven months after the Sneiderman killing. Flores said Neuman “did not have the mental capacity to distinguish between right and wrong in relation to the shooting.” “His belief was that he was having more than an affair with Andrea Sneiderman,” Flores said. “He believed that he was the father of her children and that his children were in danger.” Neuman believed “he was going to protect [the Sneiderman children] by killing Mr. Sneiderman,” Flores said. “He would then afterwards be with what he calls ‘his family’—with the mother of his children, Andrea Sneiderman” and the Sneiderman children. “The only person that would have known that he was in fact delusional—that he had in fact lost touch with reality was Andrea Sneiderman,” Flores said. “And the reason for that was that the delusions were about her and the children.” Flores faced tough questioning from the prosecution, who asked whether Neuman could have lied to her. “If he in fact lied to me I would be wrong,” Flores said. “However, delusions are very difficult to fake. I could be wrong. I don’t believe I am though.” Don Geary, chief assistant district attorney, said “Doc, you weren’t there on November 18, 2010. Are you a psychologist or a psychic? How do you know he didn’t know right from wrong when he shot and killed Russell Sneiderman? How do you know? “If he’s worried about the police, he knows what he’s did is wrong, doesn’t he?” Geary said. Neuman’s trial was expected to resume on March 8 after a two-day suspension for an unrelated matter.

The Champion Free Press, Friday, March 9, 2012

Commissioners concerned about recently discovered $12 million surplus
by Andrew Cauthen “The net of these two calculations for the 2012 budget is $12.16 milWhen the DeKalb County lion, which is …above the Board of Commissioners amount estimated in the passed the 2012 budget on proposed budget,” according Feb. 28, it was balanced to the statement. An addiwith a $12 million surplus tional $247,000 in fines and from 2011 recently discovforfeitures revenue from ered by the county adminis- Recorder’s Court brings the tration. total surplus to $12.42 milAnd some commissioners lion. have a problem with that. “Expenditure projec“That’s not good plantions are composed of ning,” said Commissioner detailed projections for sevElaine Boyer. eral dozen departments and Members of the commis- tend to be fluid throughout sioners’ finance committee the year,” according to were told of the $12 million the statement. “Additionapproximately a week before ally, expenditure projecthe board voted to approve tions are generally made the budget when the county conservatively, such that administration presented an expenditures are slightly amended 2012 budget. over-estimated on average, The board voted 4-3 to rather than risking the conset the 2012 budget at $559 sequences of under-estimatmillion with no tax increase. ing. This, along with pruBurke Brennan, chief dent budgetary governance, communications officer for accounted for the higherthe county, said the $12 mil- than-projected surplus.” lion was discovered when “It’s inappropriate; it’s the county closed its finanunacceptable,” said Comcial books for 2011. missioner Lee May, chair“When we prepare the man of the county’s finance budget in December, it’s committee. “Either [the still during the [fiscal] year,” county’s administration] Brennan said. Until the fisdidn’t know, which is unaccal year is closed out, “we ceptable, or they knew and don’t realize to the penny decided not to tell us. where we are.” “We were told by [CEO Brennan said the funds Burrell Ellis that] the $12 were saved because “we million was due to the tightdidn’t spend all the money ening of the belts,” May allocated to spend in 2011.” said. According to an explaMay said the money nation from the county’s equates to one mill of revfinance department given to enue, which would have The Champion, “the 2012 meant a smaller tax increase proposed budget as submitin the 2011 budget. ted by [Ellis] on Dec. 15, “That’s something that 2011, projected $544 million I could have supported last in revenue for Fiscal Year year,” May said. 2011. The actual amount Although he called the was $547.89 million for a administration’s accounting difference of $3.88 million.” “unacceptable,” May called The statement from the the money a “godsend” finance department said the because it will cover $10 difference between projected million in employee health expenditures for 2011 and of which that the county adthe actual expenditures for ministration was unaware. that year was $8.3 million. “The CEO miscalculated

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the health expenses to the tune of $10 million,” May said. “So if we didn’t have this $12 million, we would be in a much greater hole in terms of revenue for our budget,” May said. “That was a huge, huge miss,” said Boyer, who did
420-313715 3/8,3/15,3/22,3/26 DEKALB COUNTY, GEORGIA

not vote in favor of the budget. “I have a real concern about that. “My conscience won’t allow me to vote for that knowing all that’s about to come down the pipe,” Boyer said. “Until I found out about the $10 million, I was

willing to maybe entertain some of these things.” Commissioner Sharon Barnes Sutton said “$10 million just popping up at the end of the budgeting process and nobody informing us about it is just totally unacceptable.”


By virtue of a Power of Sale contained in that certain Security Deed from Lisa-Anne Sitton to Frank Tasker and Nancy Tasker dated September 15, 2011, recorded in Deed Book 22634, Pages 87– 99, DEKALB County, Georgia Records, said Security Deed having been given to secure a promissory note of even date in the original principal amount of $245,000.00 with interest thereon as provided for therein (the “Note”), there will be sold at public outcry to the highest bidder for cash before the courthouse door of DEKALB County, Georgia, within the legal hours of sale on the first Tuesday in April (April 3, 2012), the following described property:

All that tract or parcel of land lying and being in Land Lot 362 of the 18th District of DeKalb County, Georgia, being Lot 2, Block B, Unit No.1 of Heathwood Subdivision, and a tract to the rear, all being more particularly described as follows: BEGINNING at a point located on the southeasterly right of way of Kings Down Road 160 feet southwesterly, as measured along the southeasterly right of way of Kings Down Road from the intersection of the southeasterly right of way of Kings Down Road and the southwesterly right of way of Chamblee -Dunwoody Road, and running thence southeasterly along the line dividing Lots 1 and 2 of the Block and Subdivision heretofore referred to 190 feet to a point; running thence southeasterly 226.59 feet to a point; running thence southwesterly forming an interior angle of 79 degrees 58 minutes with the preceding course, 111.26 'feet to a point; running thence northwesterly forming an interior angle of 102 degrees 12 minutes with the preceding course, 225.06 feet to a point located on the southeasterly line of said Lot 2; running thence northwesterly along the line dividing Lots 2 and 3 of the Block and Subdivision heretofore referred to, 174.92 feet to a point located on the southeasterly right of way of Kings Down Road; running thence northeasterly as measured along the southeasterly right of way of Kings Down Road 125.0 feet to the iron pin and the point of beginning, being improved property known as No. 4835 Kings Down Rd. Dunwoody, GA 30338 according to the present system of numbering houses in DeKalb County, Georgia.

Any reference to a street address or tax parcel identification number is for reference only and should not be relied upon or considered as being a part of the foregoing legal description. The indebtedness secured by said Security Deed has been and is hereby declared due because of default under the terms of said Security Deed and Note, including but not limited to the nonpayment of the indebtedness as and when due. The indebtedness remaining in default, this sale will be made for the purpose of paying the same, all expenses of the sale, including attorney's fees and all other payments provided for under the terms of the Security Deed and Note. Said property will be sold subject to the following items which may affect the title to said property: all zoning ordinances; matters which would be disclosed by an accurate survey or by an inspection of the property; any outstanding taxes, including but not limited to ad valorem taxes, which constitute liens upon said property; special assessments; all outstanding bills for public utilities which constitute liens upon said property; all restrictive covenants, easements, rights-of-way and any other matters of record superior to said Security Deed. To the best of the knowledge and belief of the undersigned, the party in possession of the property is Lisa-Anne Sitton, Larry Sitton, or a tenant or tenants. The entity that has full authority to negotiate, amend, and modify all terms of the mortgage with the debtor is: Richard S. Alembik, 315 W. Ponce de Leon Ave., Ste. 250, Decatur, GA 30030; 404-373-0205. The sale will be conducted subject to confirmation that the sale is not prohibited under the U.S. Bankruptcy Code and to final confirmation and audit of the status of the loan with the holder of the security deed. Notice has been given of intention to collect attorney’s fees in accordance with the terms of the Note. Nancy Tasker, and Frank Tasker, as Attorneys-in-Fact for Lisa-Anne Sitton This 3rd day of March, 2012. Richard S. Alembik Richard S. Alembik, PC 315 W. Ponce De Leon Ave., Ste 250 Decatur, GA 30030 (404) 373-0205 THIS LAW FIRM IS ATTEMPTING TO COLLECT A DEBT. ANY INFORMATION OBTAINED WILL BE USED FOR THAT PURPOSE.

The Champion Free Press, Friday, March 9, 2012

Elementary school boasts ‘growing’ environmental club
by Daniel Beauregard On a chilly morning on March 7, students of the Smoke Rise Elementary Enviromental Club were in the garden early, checking on the collards and rotating the compost tumbler. In one corner of the garden, students had laid out various kinds of trash as an experiment to see which took the longest to decompose. The environmental club, for students in grades three through five, was started four years ago by physical education teacher Kathy Kearney. We had a student who was really interested in that kind of stuff and I am too, and he kept saying, ‘I wish we had something at school,’” Kearney said. Kearney, who has been teaching at Smoke Rise for 10 years, said each year the club is a little different because she structures it around the students’ interests. The club meets after school once a week. “We used to have a fish pond. This year the pump broke and all the fish died, but next year that will be one of our projects,” Kearney said. In the courtyard where students were checking on the collards, radishes and other vegetables, one student took a long clear tube used to collect rainwater and poured t he remains of last week’s rains onto some of the plants. Kearney explained that when the vegetables were ready to be picked, she and the students would cook and eat them one day after school. “We also have a butterfly garden that we maintain and we’ll raise butterflies. We do raise monarchs but yesterday we let loose a swallow tail butterfly,” Kearney said. The students recently planted a pomegranate tree and Kearney said each year the school holds a festival around Earth Day to celebrate recycling. Both the environmental club and the student council help collect paper, cans and bottles throughout the year. The school also hosts electronic recycling days. In addition to the compost tumbler in the courtyard garden there is another

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See Club on Page 11A A member of the Smoke Rise Elementary Environmental Club checks the progress of the collards
growing in the school’s courtyard garden. Photo by Daniel Beauregard

wards CEO’s Community Hero Awards
presented by The Champion Newspaper and DeKalb County CEO Burrell Ellis
Nominate a community servant, community organization or an individual in the DeKalb community who tirelessly volunteers his or her service for the betterment of DeKalb County.
Please complete this nomination form and return it to The Champion o ce by March 30, 2012. A panel of civic, corporate, and government volunteers will select the winners. Recipients will receive charitable contributions to help further their e orts in the county. Winners will be honored at the CEO’s Community Hero Awards Gala at Callanwolde Fine Arts Center on Sunday, April 29, 2012 - 4 p.m. Nominations may be faxed to: 404-373-7721 Or mail nomination to: The Champion Newspaper • P. O. Box 1347, Decatur, GA 30030 Email nomination forms to: Nominator’s name ___________________________________________________ Nominator’s address __________________________________________________ City _________________________________ State ____ ZIP Code _____________ Nominator’s phone number ____________________________________________ Nominator’s email ____________________________________________________ Deadline to submit nominations is March 30, 2012. For more information, please contact Erica M. Brooks at 404-371-3695 or John Hewitt 404-373-7779 x110.

Announcing the 2012

Award Nominee Information (attach additional page if needed)

*All individual nominees must live in the DeKalb County. Any organization nominated must be able to demonstrate a clear presence and direct impact on DeKalb County. Please indicate below which category best describes your nomination: COMMUNITY CHAMPION AWARD This award acknowledges an individual and non-pro t organization whose work has had a positive impact in strengthening communities and improving the lives of others in DeKalb County. ENVIRONMENTAL CHANGE AWARD This award honors a community member and/or organization that works to preserve, protect, and raise awareness about our environment. YOUTH VOLUNTEER AWARD This award recognizes a DeKalb County youth between the ages of 5-18 that exemplifies volunteerism and community service. NEIGHBORHOOD EMPOWERMENT AWARD This award recognizes an individual and organization that fosters civic engagement and promotes community involvement. THE VANGUARD AWARD This award recognizes an individual and organization whose contributions most exemplify the National County Government Month theme as established by NACo each year. This year’s DeKalb theme is “Healthy Counties, Healthy Families; ONE Healthy DeKalb”. Nominee’s name______________________________________________________ Nominee’s Agency, Community Organization, or Individual Volunteer Focus ____________________________________________________________________ Nominee’s address:____________________________________________________ City______________________ State____ ZIP _________________ Nominee’s contact info (required so nominee can be noti ed if selected) Name ____________________ Phone ____________ E-mail address _________________ Please tell us why this nominee should be honored as a CEO’s Community Hero: ___________________________________________________________________________ ___________________________________________________________________________ ___________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________
Attach additional information if needed

The Champion Free Press, Friday, March 9, 2012

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DeKalb Police searching for suspect in attempted child abductions
by Andrew Cauthen On March 4, at approxi- sleeved shirt, black pants, and her friends screamed Anyone with mately 8:30 p.m., a 9-year- black Nike tennis shoes and and fought him off. tion regarding these inciold girl was walking to her a black mask. The incident was inidents is asked to call the The DeKalb County Po- apartment at Stonebridge The other incident, tially reported to school DeKalb County Police lice Department is searchwhen the alleged attacker which occurred on Feb. 21 authorities and later to the Department’s major felony ing for a suspect in two confronted her in a breezeat approximately 7:30 a.m., DeKalb County Police Deunit at (770)724-7850. attempted child abductions way and dragged the girl to involved an 11-year-old partment. near Stonebridge Aparta nearby wooded area. girl who was walking to The suspect in this case ments on North Hairston The girl was able to esschool from Stonebridge is described as a Black ANY AVAILABLE LSBE Road. cape unharmed by screamApartments with a group of male, 30-40 years old, apFor DeKalb county bid In both instances the fe- ing and kicking, according friends who noticed the sus- proximately 5-feet-5 to male children were able to to the police report. She pect following them. 5-feet-10 inches tall. The Solicitation #3002211 fight off their attacker after then alerted family memThe man later grabbed man was wearing a green for new tires and tubes being grabbed while walk- bers about the incident. the girl and tried to cover camouflage army-style ing near the Stonebridge The suspect in this case her mouth, according to the jacket with a fur hood, blue project please contact apartment complex in is described as a Black police report. The suspect jeans, black shoes and a Scott at 770-963-9118 Stone Mountain, according male, wearing a black long- ran away after the victim dreadlock hairstyle. to police. DeKalb County Police spokeswoman Mekka ParDeKalb County Wants to Hear From You ish said police do not know whether the attacker is the Regarding the Proposed Franchise Agreement Renewal same in both cases. with Comcast Cable Communications Although neither victim Send your comments and/or concerns regarding Comcast’s current performance under was physically harmed, the current franchise agreement and/or the future cable-related needs and interests of Parish called the incidents your community to “definitely concerning.” “In both cases you are… dealing with someone who The Champion Weather March 8, 2012 is very aggressive, very Weather History Seven Day Forecast In-Depth Local Forecast Today's Regional Map brazen,” Parish said.
Partly Cloudy High: 70 Low: 59 Today we will see partly cloudy skies with a high temperature of 70º, humidity of 60%. Southeast wind 5 to 10 mph. The record high temperature for today is 82º set in 1974. Expect mostly cloudy skies tonight with a slight chance of showers, overnight low of 59º. Dunwoody 68/58 Lilburn Smyrna Doraville 69/59 69/59 69/59 Snellville Decatur 70/59 Atlanta 70/59 70/59 Lithonia College Park 71/59 71/59 Morrow 71/59 Union City 71/59 Hampton 72/60 March 8, 1717 - On Fishers Island in Long Island Sound, 1,200 sheep were discovered to have been buried under a snow drift for four weeks. When finally uncovered, 100 sheep were still alive.

Continued From Page 10A

T-storms Likely High: 71 Low: 54

one around the corner, which uses worms to break down leftover food collected each week from the school cafeteria. Later that morning, students from the environmental club hurriedly joined their classmates in the school gym to listen to members of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) speak about the importance of protecting the earth. “The PTA presidents met [Gwendolyn Keyes Fleming] at a conference and they asked us if we were interested in hosting the EPA’s school program, and of course we said yes,” Kearney said. Keyes Fleming is the Southeast Administrator for the EPA and she addressed students about steps each one could take to become “Planet Protectors” by recycling, conserving water and reducing air pollution emissions. The presentation, for more than 500 students in pre-K through fifth grade, also highlighted the work the Smoke Rise Environmental Club had done and encouraged students to join.

*Last Week’s Almanac
Hi Lo Normals Precip Date Tuesday 61 44 60/40 0.22" Wednesday 68 58 60/40 0.28" Thursday 77 59 61/40 0.05" Friday 76 63 61/40 0.03" Saturday 63 47 61/40 1.69" Sunday 51 39 62/41 0.00" Monday 55 36 62/41 0.00" Rainfall . . . . . . .2.27" Average temp . .56.9 Normal rainfall . .1.26" Average normal 50.6 Departure . . . . .+1.01" Departure . . . . .+6.3
*Data as reported from De Kalb-Peachtree Airport

Few Showers High: 60 Low: 45

Scat'd T-storms High: 59 Low: 45

Mostly Cloudy High: 68 Low: 51

March 9, 1956 - A whopping 367 inches of snow was measured on the ground at the Ranier Paradise Ranger Station in Washington. The snow depth was a state record and the second highest total of record for the continental United States.

Mostly Cloudy High: 69 Low: 53 Full 3/8

Local Sun/Moon Chart This Week
Day Thursday Friday Saturday Sunday Monday Tuesday Wednesday Sunrise 6:56 a.m. 6:55 a.m. 6:53 a.m. 7:52 a.m. 7:51 a.m. 7:49 a.m. 7:48 a.m. Sunset 6:40 p.m. 6:41 p.m. 6:42 p.m. 7:43 p.m. 7:43 p.m. 7:44 p.m. 7:45 p.m. Moonrise 7:20 p.m. 8:30 p.m. 9:40 p.m. 10:49 p.m. No Rise 12:57 a.m. 2:00 a.m. Moonset 6:43 a.m. 7:20 a.m. 7:59 a.m. 9:42 a.m. 10:29 a.m. 11:21 a.m. 12:18 p.m. New 3/22

Tonight's Planets
Mercury Venus Mars Jupiter Saturn Uranus Rise Set 7:33 a.m. 8:02 p.m. 8:51 a.m. 10:16 p.m. 5:55 p.m. 7:03 a.m. 9:16 a.m. 10:34 p.m. 9:39 p.m. 9:01 a.m. 7:40 a.m. 7:48 p.m.

Partly Cloudy High: 71 Low: 49 Last 3/14

First 3/30

Local UV Index

National Weather Summary This Week
The Northeast will see partly cloudy to cloudy skies with a few showers today and Friday, mostly clear skies Saturday, with the highest temperature of 68º in Georgetown, Del. The Southeast will see mostly clear to partly cloudy skies with a few showers and thunderstorms today through Saturday, with the highest temperature of 86º in Tampa, Fla. The Northwest will see mostly clear skies today and Friday, isolated rain Saturday, with the highest temperature of 63º in Medford, Ore. The Southwest will see mostly clear skies today through Saturday, with the highest temperature of 81º in Fullerton, Calif.

Weather Trivia
Which way does air flow around high and low pressure systems?

0 - 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11+


UV Index 0-2: Low, 3-5: Moderate, 6-7: High, 8-10: Very High 11+: Extreme Exposure

Answer: Clockwise around a high; counterclockwise around a low.

StarWatch By Gary Becker - Busy Week for the Planets
Last week on the night of the Oscars, Hollywood wasn’t the only town putting on a show. Outside in the deepening velvet sky, Venus, Jupiter, and a thin crescent moon formed a loose triangle above the treetops to my west. They had been visible the two nights previously. On February 25, a thinner moon stood above and to the right of Venus; and the most spectacular of the three evenings, February 24, saw a razor thin smiley moon below Venus. The planets and the moon are wanderers, moving among the fixed stars and among themselves, sometimes creating impressive gatherings. The moon has continued roaming eastward, increasing in brightness, leaving a tightening Jupiter and Venus in the west after dusk. At the beginning of this week they are only seven degrees apart, but by the week’s end, that distance shrinks to only three degrees as Venus passes Jupiter and takes the lead in the evening sky. However, there is more action in the deepening twilight this week. Mercury can also be seen if your western horizon is unobscured and the evening is very clear. On March 5, fifty minutes after sunset, Mercury will be due west, low to the horizon. It should be easy to spot with binoculars, but the real challenge will be trying to see Uranus about 2.5 degrees to Mercury’s left and slightly below it. The pair is separated by four degrees by March 8 with Uranus still left of Mercury, but now 3.5 degrees below the Messenger God. Keep your eyes on the moon because its wanderings will help you spot reddish Mars on Wednesday. A full moon will rise in step with Mars and be next to the War God all night. By 11 p.m., look for late bloomer, Saturn, left of the blue supergiant, Spica, low in the ESE. Saturn will just be a bit brighter, and like all planets, it will be shining with a steadier light. In one week, or even one night, you can see all the naked eye planets and more.

The Champion Free Press, Friday, March 9, 2012


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CDC: Hepatitis C deaths up, baby boomers most at risk
by Lauran Neergaard WASHINGTON (AP) Deaths from liver-destroying hepatitis C are on the rise, and new data shows baby boomers especially should take heed—they are most at risk. Federal health officials are considering whether anyone born between 1945 and 1965 should get a onetime blood test to check if their livers harbor this ticking time bomb. The reason: Two-thirds of people with hepatitis C are in this age group, most unaware that a virus that takes a few decades to do its damage has festered since their younger days. The issue has taken new urgency since two drugs hit the market last summer that promise to cure many more people than ever was possible. And research published Feb. 20 says testing millions of the middle-aged to find those who need the pricey treatment would be worth the cost, saving thousands of lives. “One of every 33 baby boomers are living with hepatitis C infection,” said Dr. John Ward, hepatitis chief at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). “Most people will be surprised, because it’s a silent epidemic.” Don’t think you need to worry? Yes, sharing a needle while injecting illegal drugs is the biggest risk factor for becoming infected with this blood-borne virus. But before 1992, when widespread testing of the blood supply began, hepatitis C commonly was spread through blood transfusions. Plus, a one-time experiment with drugs way back in high school or college could have been enough. “Asking someone about a risk that happened 20 to They add to the price, however, another $1,000 to $4,000 a week. Drugs that promise to work even better have begun testing. Those advances are fueling CDC deliberations of whether to change testing guidelines to recommend that anyone born between 1945 and 1965 get a onetime screening. A second CDC-funded study published Feb. 20 analyzed models of that option, and concluded it had the potential to save 82,000 lives. A third study published Feb. 20 from Stanford University looked more closely at the price tag, and concluded the new triple-therapy would be cost-effective for people with advanced disease. It’s still cheaper than a transplant costing well more than $100,000. But not everyone with hepatitis C will go on to suffer serious liver damage. For those with mild disease, that analysis concluded some gene testing to predict who might really need the costlier triple therapy rather than the older drugs would be a good next step. It’s not clear how quickly the CDC will settle the boomer-screening question. But doctors at New York’s Montefiore Medical Center have started raising the issue with boomers. And Montefiore internist Dr. Gary Rogg said a number of patients have sought testing after seeing hepatitis-awareness ads from the drugs’ manufacturers. “Now it’s considered a curable disease, that makes all the difference,” said Rogg, who was surprised at some longtime patients’ test results. Even a nurse he knows learned she had it, and the only risk she could recall was a blood transfusion during surgery when she was 10 years old.

30 years ago is a lot to ask,” said Ward. Hence the quest for a new strategy. About 3.2 million Americans are estimated to have chronic hepatitis C, but at least half of them may not know it. The virus, which affects 170 million people worldwide, can gradually scar the liver and lead to cirrhosis or liver cancer. It is a leading cause of liver transplants. A CDC study published Feb.20 analyzed a decade of death records and found an increase in death rates from hepatitis C. In fact, in 2007 there were 15,000 deaths related to hepatitis C, higher

than previous estimates— and surpassing the nearly 13,000 deaths caused by the better-known AIDS virus. Perhaps more surprising, three-fourths of the hepatitis deaths occurred in the middle-aged, people 45 to 64, researchers reported in Annals of Internal Medicine. “Mortality will continue to grow for the next 10 to 15 years at least unless we do something different” to find and treat the silent sufferers, Ward said. CDC’s current guidelines recommend testing people known to be at high risk, and until last summer there wasn’t much enthusi-

asm even for that step: the reasons are the year-long, two-drug treatment promised to cure only 40 percent of people; treatment was so grueling that many patients refused to try it and treatment could cost up to $30,000. Two new drugs—Vertex Pharmaceuticals’ telaprevir and Merck & Co.’s boceprevir—are starting to change that pessimism. Research suggests adding one of them to standard therapy can boost cure rates as high as 75 percent. While still full of side effects, they can allow some people to finish treatment in just six months.

US flu season off to latest start in decades
by Mike Stobbe ATLANTA (AP) U.S. health officials say the flu season is finally here—the slowest start in nearly 25 years. Until February, there weren’t enough flu cases in the United States to signal the start of the season. This is the latest start to a flu season since the winter of 1987-1988. Flu season usually starts in December or January. Often, it’s half over by late February. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) officials don’t know why this season was slow, but it could be a combination of factors. On Feb. 17, CDC officials said one state—California—has had widespread cases for the last two weeks, and Missouri has seen a spike in reports of flu-like illness. So far the flu vaccine seems wellmatched to the strains making people sick.

The Champion Free Press, Friday, March 9, 2012

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DeKalb voters support Sunday Neuman trial: ‘Unusual and compelling,’ attorney says alcohol sales, Romney
by Daniel Beauregard DeKalb County residents showed their support on Super Tuesday for a referendum to allow Sunday retail alcohol sales between the hours of 12:30-11:30 p.m. in unincorporated DeKalb. By press time on March 6, 66.7 percent of precincts reported with 29,602 voting in favor of the referendum and 11,321 voting against it. Other cities in the county voted on the referendum last year during municipal elections. However, DeKalb County spokesman Burke Brennan said since there were no county-wide elections, officials decided to hold the referendum during the Republican presidential primary rather than pay to hold a special election. Republican presidential candidate Newt Gingrich of Georgia, the former Speaker of the House, reportedly won the Georgia Primary on March 6. However, voters in DeKalb favored Mitt Romney. The former governor of Massachusetts earned 38.84 percent of the DeKalb vote (9,355) with two-thirds of the precincts reporting by press deadline. Gingrich earned 36.4 percent (8,768 votes). Republican candidate Rick Santorum, the former two-term Senator from Pennsylvania, had 12.5 percent of the votes (3,021) and Ron Paul garnered 10.4 percent (2,511 votes). Additionally, voters in Doraville went to the polls to decide who would fill a city council seat in District One of the Doraville City Council. The seat, one of two in the district, was left open when Mayor Donna Pittman vacated the position to run for mayor. In the running for the Doraville city council seat were Stuart Anderson and Robert Patrick. John Noonan had originally planned to run but pulled out of the race in February. However, preliminary results were not available by press time.
by Andrew Cauthen rom social media posts, streaming video and water-cooler chats, the trial of Hemy Neuman is a hot topic in DeKalb and around the nation. “I was at an event…with a bunch of lawyers [and] everybody was talking about it,” said attorney B. J. Bernstein, who herself is no stranger to high-profile cases. Most recently, she has represented the plaintiffs in a sexual assault lawsuit against Bishop Eddie Long and a Florida A&M University band member who was hazed. “People are around talking about it,” said Bernstein, who has been watching the trial in between clients. “It goes beyond what the legal paper carries.” Media coverage, has been intense of the trial of Neuman, who has pleaded not guilty by reason of insanity for the November 2010 killing of Russell Sneiderman outside a daycare in Dunwoody. Bernstein said high-profile cases have well-known defendants or “facts that are unusual and compelling.” “It’s a like a Law and Order episode,” Bernstein said. “It literally is like watching a TV drama unfold, but sadly it’s real and involves the death of someone.” Family members of homicide victims are usually “very


See for more details.

teary” and talk about what kind of person the deceased was, Bernstein said, referring to Andrea Sneiderman the widow of the victim who worked for Neuman at GE Energy. “Here you have a person who worked with this defendant,” Bernstein said. And there are “allegations of an affair that she’s denying.” “The prosecution and defense attorneys agree that it’s an affair,” Bernstein said. “Both sides are hostile with [her] and [are] impeaching her. It’s highly unusual.” Despite the presence of televisions cameras and journalists, the lawyers in the trial are not “getting overly dramatic,” Bernstein said. “I don’t see any of the attorneys playing up to the cameras,” Bernstein said. “That’s not your job.” Bernstein has had two tele-

vised cases. “You forget [about the cameras],” Bernstein said. “A good lawyer forgets.” Bernstein said the trial, which is expected to last four to six weeks, is being run efficiently by Superior Court Judge Gregory A. Adams. Adams is “a good judge who accepts no nonsense any day of the week,” Bernstein said. “He is running a tight courtroom.” During a pretrial hearing on Feb. 8, Adams had a message for all the lawyers involved in the trial: “It’s going to be tighter than you think.” Bernstein said Adams is “a judge that has control of his courtroom and does not let anyone else take control.” Despite the media attention, DeKalb County’s Chief Superior Court Judge Mark Anthony Scott said judges have the same task of making sure the courthouse is secure and efficient. “Judges don’t treat cases differently because of the media attention,” Scott said. “A trial is a trial. We don’t show preference to any defendant over another.” Scott said he has “a great deal of respect” for all of his fellow judges, including Adams. “He’s a judge’s judge,” Scott said. “That’s why a building is named after him in DeKalb. If you want a project done right and quickly, give it to Judge Adams.”

Girls Continued From Page 1A
cousin was a Boy Scout and could hardly wait to join.” She explained that in the 1950s second grade was as early as girls could join. There now are Daisies, who join as early as preschool. Paschal, who now runs the volunteer helpline at the Greater Atlanta Council headquarters, said Girl Scouts provide a wonderful opportunity for girls to learn leadership, discipline and a wealth of skills that help them throughout their lives. “I was shy as a girl,” Paschal recalled. “Through the Girl Scouts I could make friends, learn new things and meet new people.” She said that current leaders believe as Low did that girls should have the opportunity to explore the world in a setting that’s safe and fun. “The assumption 50 years ago was that all girls would one day be homemakers and many programs were built around that assumption. Today, instead of just offering a badge in cooking, we offer a badge in home science so that girls learn the science behind such activities as cooking.” Among the aspects of scouting that have relaxed a bit over the years, Paschal noted, is the uniform. “When I first joined, you weren’t in uniform unless you were dressed head to toe in Girl Scout issued clothing—including socks. Now, girls wearing their vest or their sash and a white blouse from their regular clothes are considered in uniform.” Even the official Scout clothing today is more in line with styles the girls would choose on their own, she said. Trudy Rudert, who leads a troop at Kittredge Elementary, pointed out that today’s girls are taught technology that was not available when she joined in the 1950s. “We teach the girls to use computers, but we teach them how to be safe when they go on the internet,” she said Rudert, who will be taking a group of 24 fourth through sixth grade girls to Savannah during spring break to visit the Juliette Gordon Low home, said that she be farm wives,” she noted— but its core values have not. Shawanda Cobb, service unit director for Southeast DeKalb, said she had been a Girl Scout and was delighted six years ago when her daughter told her she wanted to join. “I think the camping, canoeing and arts and crafts appealed to her, but since she’s joined she’s found so much more that she really loves,” she said. Cobb said among the reasons she supports Girl Scouts is that the organization teaches girls to connect with their communities— to care about the community and work to benefit it. “Each girl is required to complete a journey. That may involve the environment, a community project, the media,” Cobb explained. “They must create a strategic plan and get others involved to help them. It teaches them organization, cooperation, leadership—so many professional skills that will help them in so many aspects of their lives.”

Shawanda Cobb says she’s delighted that her daughter Sydnie decided to follow in her footsteps and become a Girl Scout.

cherishes shared values with other Girl Scout leaders and likes passing those values along. Like Paschal, she said that she has seen a great deal change—“no one is expecting these girls to grow up to

The Champion Free Press, Friday, March 9, 2012


Page 14A

The Museum School wins statewide honors

Education Briefs

Jan Thompson, left, and Miller Grove Elementary Media Specialist Lummie Harris hold a reptile display on loan from the Fernbank Museum. Harris was recently recognized as the 2012 DeKalb Media Specialist of the Year for which Thompson nominated her. Photos by Daniel Beauregard

Media specialist makes library an extension of the classroom
by Daniel Beauregard Media Specialist Lummie Harris said her goal for this year was not only to make students more informed learners but to make them independent learners. “I want to teach them to go out on their own and I tell them it’s their duty to pass along what they’ve learned to someone else,” Harris said. Harris, who has been the media specialist at Miller Grove Elementary School for six years, was recently recognized as the 2012 DeKalb County School System’s Media Specialist of the Year. However, she said she didn’t always want to work in the library. When she started teaching at Miller Grove in 2000, she spent six years in the classroom before going to school to become a media specialist. “Ironically, the year I decided I had to get back into school a student in my classroom had a mother who was a media specialist at Stephenson High School. I would talk to her about questions I had,” Harris said. Harris, then a language arts department chairwoman at Miller Grove, said she was responsible for working with teachers to make sure their lesson plans were in order and disseminating information among others in her department. “I love what I do. Basically, being a librarian allows me to reach many more students and teachers than just teaching a grade level,” Harris said. Miller Grove Principal Thaddeus “I give them each a $15 gift card and their names are displayed on the bulletin board,” Harris said. Harris said it doesn’t seem like much but it is one of the ways she has increased the number of students and teachers using the media center. She has also started to offer extended hours for students on Wednesday. “I’ve noticed that in the morning on Wednesday we have a huge number of students frantically trying to get projects completed. So, I dedicated Wednesdays to those students who need assistance. In addition to whatever project they’re working on, I can assist them with the technology part of the project too,” Harris said. Each time a class visits the media center, Harris said she has student helpers who work with their peers. She encourages each student helper to take what they’ve learned from their time in the library and teach it to someone else. “I empower them and they become instrumental in helping the student because if a student needs help, they’re more likely to listen to another student rather than me,” Harris said. Harris will represent DeKalb Schools in the metro district media specialist competition in the spring. The state winner will be selected from among the district winners and will be announced at the Council of Media Organizations annual conference next fall.

The Museum School of Avondale Estates recently received statewide recognition for its students’ high academic performance and its innovative curriculum. The school is one of 58 elementary schools statewide to receive a bronze award from the Governor’s Office of Student Achievement for outstanding academic performance. The award is based on scores on state assessments during the 2010-11 school year. It is presented to schools with at least 95 percent of students meeting or exceeding standards, and at least 20 percent of those students exceeding standards. In science, reading and English/ language arts, 100 percent of thirdgraders met or exceeded standards on the CRCT, the state’s standardized test administered in the spring. Additionally, in January the Georgia Association of Museums and Galleries presented the charter school with the Education Award during its annual meeting in Baldwin County. GPC student appointed to governor’s MLK Advisory Board Dilyana Kovacheva, a freshman at Georgia Perimeter College, has been appointed to the Governor’s Martin Luther King, Jr. Advisory Council. Nine Georgians comprise the council, and each member serves a four-year term. “The duty of this council is to promote the principles of nonviolence, peace, social justice, and the awareness and appreciation of the Civil Rights Movement and the life and work of Martin Luther King Jr.,” Gov. Nathan Deal said. Other members of the council include heads of nonprofit organizations, a state representative, a state senator, a high school civics teacher and the commissioner of the Georgia Department of Community Affairs. Emory professor named Sloan Fellow Emory University’s Eugene Agichtein, an assistant professor in the Emory College of Arts & Sciences’ Department of Mathematics and Computer Science, has been awarded a Sloan Foundation Fellowship for 2012. Agichtein also is director of the Emory Intelligent Information Access Lab. His team works on information retrieval, focusing on modeling user behavior and interactions in web search and online social networks and large-scale text mining and information extraction.

Dixon nominated Harris for the award. Dixon said Harris takes her role as an educator very seriously. “She has transformed the image of the media center into a learning environment that supports classroom instruction by making it an extension of the classroom,” Dixon said. Harris said at the beginning of each year, she partners with teachers when they are preplanning to find out what they are teaching. This helps her determine which books students may need to supplement/reinforce what they’re already learning in the classroom. “The more I work with teachers, the more they come and see that a library is not just a place to get a book,” Harris said. Before ordering any new books, Harris consults with teachers to see what their needs are because she said the more teachers show their interest, the more children she can reach. Each month, Harris also award the student, homeroom class and teacher who have checked out the most books that month.

The Champion Free Press, Friday, March 9, 2012


Page 15A

Many see bank as major step in Belvedere’s renewal
by Kathy Mitchell Many attending the ribbon cutting ceremony March 1 at the new Sun Trust Bank at Memorial and Columbia drives saw the business opening as yet another indication that the once-depressed Belvedere community is on the road to again being an economically viable area. “It’s definitely an asset to the community,” commented Ann Brown of the Belvedere Civic Club, who said she is passionately devoted to restoring a community that she has seen struggling economically and in other ways. A resident of Belvedere for more than 30 years, Brown said she wants to see the area have some of the amenities that attracted her initially. Now community relations coordinator for the Walmart adjacent to the new bank, Brown was among a large group of business executives, elected officials, community leaders and others who had come to welcome the new business. Belvedere was once a booming business area and home to Avondale Mall, anchored by such department stores as Sears and Macy’s. Belvedere Plaza on the opposite side of Memorial Drive had a Rich’s department store and other national and regional chains. As these businesses left, the area not only started to look shabby, but also saw an increase in crime. “It’s great to see a business like Sun Trust put its footprint here,” said DeKalb County Sheriff Thomas Brown, who expressed the hope that revitalization would bring with it a reduction in crime. On the Memorial Drive side of the area’s Walmart, the bank was built on previously undeveloped property. “That’s the great thing about this,” said Leonardo McClarty, president of the DeKalb County Chamber of Commerce. “This building isn’t a retrofit. Sun Trust was willing to build from the ground up, to put bricks and mortar here. That shows that they have confidence in the potential of the area.” McClarty said that among his priorities when he accepted presidency of the DeKalb Chamber was to restore the once-thriving areas around Candler Road and Memorial Drive. “When a Walmart was first proposed for this area we were under a lot of pressure not to approve the zoning for it,” said DeKalb County Commissioner Larry Johnson. “But the Walmart has been the start of a lot of building and revitalization in this area.” He pointed out that the Hibachi Grill restaurant had opened recently across the street in Belvedere Plaza. “And just look at the new $20 million streetscape that we’ve been able to build with stimulus money,” Johnson continued. “I had a vision for this community and it started with Walmart.” Roberta White, Sun Trust assistant vice president, who heads the staff at the new branch, said, “I’ve been with Sun Trust nine years and had been trying for a while to get the company interested in opening a branch here. I live in south DeKalb and I believe in this area’s potential. I’m delighted that when Sun Trust decided to open a branch here they thought of me.” White said that the bank branch and the Walmart should complement each other. “We will be partnering on many community activities,” she noted. The branch, which has been operating for approximately a month, is among the newest of Atlanta-based Sun Trust’s 1, 658 retail branches.

Surrounded by community leaders and local residents, Roberta White, who heads the new branch office, and DeKalb Commissioner Larry Johnson hold mock scissors in preparation for the March 1 ribbon cutting.

The new Sun Trust branch was built from the ground up on property that was once part of the old Avondale Mall parking lot. Photos by Kathy Mitchell

Elimilice opens DeKalb head lice removal facility
Citing a growing demand for its services and products, Elimilice, an Atlanta-based head lice removal company, is opening its second location this month in the Druid Hills/North Decatur area. The company was started by mother of two Eileen Fishman after her then 5-year-old daughter experienced head lice and Fishman had trouble finding a satisfactory treatment method. “The company uses only non-toxic products and methods and [has] a team of caring, experienced and educated professional technicians. They are all trained in the Shepherd Method™, a system that dictates painstaking examination of every strand of hair to ensure all nits and maturing and adult head lice are removed in one treatment visit,” the company’s announcement states. The new Elimilice location on Clairmont Road in Decatur serves children and adults, offering information, products, head checks and treatment.

Business Brief

...WE’LL DO THE PAPERWORK! 770-482-1092

The Voice of Business in DeKalb County
Two Decatur Town Center, 125 Clairemont Ave., Suite 235, Decatur, GA 30030

DeKalb Chamber of Commerce

The Champion Free Press, Friday, March 9, 2012

Page 16A

Free tour of Callanwolde offered


before the Civil War. The event is at 7 p.m. Toco Hill-Avis G. Williams Library is located at 1282 McConnell Drive, Decatur. Leadership Institute focuses on grant writing “How to Write a Grant” will be the topic of a Leadership Institute presentation on March 15, sponsored by County Commissioner Larry Johnson. The Leadership Institute provides the community with guest speakers on subject matters pertaining to leadership, policy and entrepreneurship. The presentation will be at the Porter Sanford Center, 3181 Rainbow Drive in Decatur, from 6:30 to 7:30 p.m. For more information, call (404) 371-2425. Protestors of Suburban Plaza Walmart to hold outreach walk Good Growth DeKalb is holding an outreach walk from Suburban Plaza to downtown Decatur on Saturday, March 10. The Outreach Walk is planned to raise awareness about a proposed Walmart at Suburban Plaza. Led by musicians, the walkers will begin at 10 a.m. and proceed from Suburban Plaza down Church Street to Decatur Square, passing out leaflets to pedestrians and businesses. Transportation will be provided back to Suburban Plaza. Participants are encouraged to bring signs and noisemakers. For more information, visit www. Rotary Club offering $10,000 in grants The Decatur Rotary Club is donating $10,000 in grant money to local organizations whose focus is on literacy and/or at-risk youth. To apply, the project must meet the following requirements: • The program must focus on literacy and/or atrisk youth. • The grant needs to be used for a specific program, not for general operating funds. • The program needs to be based in DeKalb County and serve DeKalb County residents. • The Decatur Rotary Club is seeking a project that will impact the local community at large; specifically in DeKalb County. • The grant money would need to be used between June 1, 2012 and May 31, 2013. • The agency needs to be a 501(C)(3). The deadline to apply is March 23. Applications can be found on www.decatur-rotary. org. Wilson among most influential Georgians Robert “Bob” Wilson, chairman of the DeKalb Medical Center Foundation, was named among the 2012 “100 Most Influential Georgians” in the January issue of Georgia Trend magazine. Wilson is an attorney/partner with Wilson, Morton & Downs in Decatur. The former three-term DeKalb County district attorney works in the areas of general litigation, education and municipal law. He’s also worked with every Georgia governor since Joe Frank Harris, including four special investigations. The most recent one, undertaken with former Attorney General Mike Bowers, un-

covered widespread cheating on standardized tests in the Atlanta and Dougherty County school systems. Movie State of Play to be shown at library Toco Hill-Avis G. Williams Library has announced that the March 9 movie in its Friday Movies Series will be State of Play, starring Russell Crowe, Ben Affleck and Rachel McAdams. The 2009 film is rated PG-13 and runs approximately 127 minutes. A mix of new releases and old favorites, the movies are shown at 1:30 p.m. each Friday. When available, movies are presented with closed captioning to assist the hearing impaired. Toco Hill-Avis G. Williams Library is located at 1282 McConnell Drive, Decatur. For more information, call (404) 679-4404.

Callanwolde Fine Arts Center is offering a free guided tour of the Gothic-Tudor-style mansion built in 1920 by Charles Howard Candler, eldest son of Coca-Cola founder Asa G. Candler, Sunday, March 11 at 1 p.m. An architectural landmark in the Druid Hills neighborhood of Atlanta, Callanwolde is listed on the National Register of Historic Places and reflects the style, charm and dignity of an historic era. The tour is part of the Atlanta Preservation Center’s annual celebration of historic places. The Phoenix Flies - A Celebration of Living Landmarks, this year is held March 10 – 25. This citywide celebration provides free access to more than 150 events at historic sites integral to Atlanta’s rich heritage. For more information, call (404) 688-3353.The Callanwolde Fine Arts Center is located at 980 Briarcliff Road NE, Atlanta. For more information about Callanwolde, call (404) 872-5338 Book release party announced Charis Books and More is hosting a release party of local author Kim Green’s first novel, Hallucination, on Friday, March 9, 7:30 – 9 p.m. The novel introduces readers to Ave Morgan Blackmon and tells the story of her healing journey through the pain of lupus to a place of wellness inside and out. Charis Books and More is located at 1189 Euclid Ave., NE, Atlanta.

Doraville Library changes hours of operation The Doraville Library has changed its hours of operation. The new hours will be: Monday: 10 a.m. - 6 p.m. Tuesday: Noon - 8 p.m. Wednesday: 10 a.m. - 6 p.m. Thursday: 10 a.m. - 6 p.m. Friday: Closed Saturday: 10 a.m. - 6 p.m. Sunday: Closed For more information, visit www.dekalblibrary. org/branches/doraville.html or call (770) 9363852.


Session on nonprofits scheduled


There will be a session at Embry Hills Library Monday, March 12, 6 - 7 p.m. for those interested in starting a nonprofit. Nonprofit consultant Chataun R. Denis will be at the library to share information on what to do to launch a nonprofit organization. The event is open to first 25 participants. To register, call (770) 270-8230 or visit the branch at 3733 Chamblee-Tucker Road, Chamblee.

Lithonia to hold Lenten prayer breakfast Christ Our Hope Catholic Church in Lithonia is holding its annual Lenten prayer breakfast on Saturday, March 17. Fr. Tim Hepburn will be the keynote speaker at the event, which runs from 8.30 a.m. to noon and includes a full breakfast for a $10 donation. The church is located at 1786 Welborne Road in Lithonia. For more information call (770) 482-5017, (678) 362-8847 or (404) 923-4895.


Author to present book set in old South Mississippi writer Jonathan Odell will be at Toco Hill-Avis G. Williams Library, Tuesday, March 13, to talk about his latest book, The Healing. “The pre-Civil War South comes brilliantly alive in this masterfully written new novel about a mysterious and charismatic healer. Rich in mood and atmosphere, the story focuses on the purchase of a slave girl, known as a healer, whose presence causes unrest and who must ultimately revive buried memories of her own past to heal a young woman,” states an announcement from the library. Odell is the author of The View from Delphi, which deals with the struggle for equality in Mississippi in the year



Local church to present free dinner and movie Grace Presbyterian Church, located at 650 Rowland Road, will show the movie Courageous, the story of four policemen and their struggles to be fathers. The movie is the fourth production by Sherwood Pictures, the moviemaking ministry of Sherwood Baptist Church in Albany. The free event is scheduled for Saturday, March 10, beginning at 5 p.m. and will include a free Italian dinner. For more information, call the church at (404) 292-5514.

The Champion Free Press, Friday, March 9, 2012

Page 17A


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The Champion Free Press, Friday, March 9, 2012


Page 18A

by Robert Naddra When Kathy Walton was named coach of a state all-star team recently, she didn’t choose other DeKalb County coaches out of obligation. The Southwest DeKalb girls coach did it to send a message. “Just like players make each other better, the coaches in this county make each other better,” said Walton, whose Panthers are one of six county teams to advance to the GHSA state basketball semifinals. “There is a certain amount of respect among the coaches, some more than others. I get a lot of help from some of the coaches in the county. There’s no way I would do what I do without their help.” Walton, who will coach the North team in the upcoming Georgia Athletic Coaches Association Junior All-Star game, chose head coaches Chantay Frost of Columbia, Robin Potter of Tucker and Kim Hixon of Marist as her assistant coaches. “I definitely wanted to keep it in the county and pick coaches that have helped me,” Walton said. “If we’re playing someone [from outside the county] that another coach knows about, it’s good to be able to get information from them. It’s been like this ever since I’ve been in the system.” The combination of talented players and coaches has led to a long string of basketball success in the county. Walton led Southwest to three straight girls state titles from 2008-10. This year, Southwest and Miller Grove advanced its boys and girls teams to the Class AAAA semifinals, and both of Columbia’s teams are in the Class AAA semifinals. Miller Grove’s boys are shooting for their fourth straight state championship while the Columbia boys have won four state titles in the past six seasons. Frost led the Columbia girls to their first state title in 2010.

Talented coaches, players form a winning tradition
Southwest DeKalb girls coach Kathy Walton and Miller Grove boys coach Sharman White in action in the Class AAAA quarterfinals. Photos by Mark Brock





“To have three schools with both teams in the semifinals speaks volumes not only of the talent in the county, but how it’s cultivated,” said Miller Grove boys coach Sharman White. “I think we have some of the best coaches in the state here. That bodes well for the kids who have talent and are put on a path to be able to play for a championship. Until we play each other, we all pull for each other. If I don’t win it, I want someone else from DeKalb County to win it.” Miller Grove girls coach Renee Breedlove recently had that sentiment passed along to her by another county coach. “A Chamblee assistant coach told me as long as someone from Region 6 wins it, he’ll be satisfied,” Breedlove said. Three teams from Region 6 had advanced to the quarterfinals of the boys and girls AAAA tournament. Miller Grove eliminated Marist in the boys’ tournament and Southwest eliminated Chamblee in the girls’ tournament. “Region 6-AAAA for years has been the most competitive region,” Breedlove said. “We know we have to get in the gym and work. That’s what’s

expected. You’re expected to win. And it’s the same tradition for both the boys and the girls.” Columbia boys coach Phil McCrary knows a little about tradition. McCrary won his 500th game with the Eagles last season. “You always have to have a forerunner, and I’m happy Columbia has been able to do that,” McCrary said. “Now you have teams likeMiller Grove, Southwest DeKalb and Redan girls able to showcase other talent within the school system. When you have good coaches and good players, being able to go on the road and bring that recognition to the school system says a lot.” Not only has McCrary been able to build tradition within the basketball program, but the boys’ and girls’ basketball programs are a source of community pride. “We’ve always had that school pride and being able to keep that pride in the community is a plus for us,” he said. “We always want to make sure we represent DeKalb County and our community well.” The six teams that have advanced to the state semifinals can be sure of that.

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The Champion Free Press, Friday, March 9, 2012

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DeKalb High School Sports Highlights
BOYS BASKETBALL (State playoffs) Miller Grove: The Wolverines won two games to advance to the Class AAAA semifinals. Justin Colvin scored 16 points and Brandon Morris added 15 in a 60-51 win over Marist in the quarterfinals. The Wolverines routed Loganville 74-29 in the second round. Tony Parker led with 15 points and eight rebounds, while Christian Houston had 11 points and a career-high 11 assists. Southwest DeKalb: Jordan Price scored 42 points in two games as the Panthers advanced to the Class AAAA semifinals. Price had 19 points to lead the Panthers to a 68-63 win over Chattahoochee in the quarterfinals. William Goodwin had 14 points and 10 rebounds, Kaderius Turner added 13 points and Justin Hollimon had 12. The Panthers also beat Cedar Shoals 72-69 in the second round as Price scored 23 points. Columbia: Tahj Shamsid-Deen had 10 points and 11 assists to lead the Eagles to a 51-30 win over Carrollton in the Class AAA quarterfinals. Jarmal Reid added 11 points and nine rebounds. The Eagles also beat Dalton 71-54 in the second round. M.L. King: De’Aires Tate and Greg King had double-doubles as the Lions defeated Douglas County 91-65 in the second round of the Class AAAAA tournament. Tate had 19 points and 13 rebounds while King had 13 points and 11 rebounds. Paul Jackson added 13 points and nine assists. The Lions were eliminated in the quarterfinals by Harrison 69-59. Tate led with 19 points, Jarnor Jones added 15 and Tivius Guthrie had 14. Marist: The War Eagles lost to Miller Grove in the quarterfinals of the Class AAAA tournament. Quenton Stephens scored 25 points, including five 3-pointers. In the second round, Stephens scored 23 points and Brooks Doyle added 22 as the War Eagles defeated Rockdale County 65-50. Stephenson: Derek Harper scored 20 points and the Jaguars nearly upset No. 2 South Cobb, losing 60-58 in the second round of the AAAAA tournament. The Jaguars held a nine-point lead in the fourth quarter.
Columbia’s Tahj Shamsid-Deen (13) lofts a shot over a Carrollton player in the Eagles’ win the in Class AAA quarterfinals. Yaktivia Hickson, left, helped Columbia scored 11 points to help the Columbia girls advance to the Class AAA semifinals with a win over Troup. Photos by Mark Brock

scored 10 points to pace the Panthers to a 44-39 win over Creekview in the second round. Columbia: The Eagles beat Troup 54-40 to advance to the Class AAA semifinals. Miah Spencer and Yaktivia Hickson each scored 11 points as the Eagles won their 13th straight game. The Eagles have allowed more than 40 points only once during the winning streak. The Eagles defeated Oconee County 64-32 in the second round. Chamblee: The Bulldogs were eliminated by Southwest DeKalb 55-52 in the quarterfinals of the Class AAAA tournament. It was the first trip to the quarterfinals for the Bulldogs. Bre McDonald scored 27 points and had 13 rebounds. The Bulldogs defeated Habersham Central 56-54 in the second round as McDonald hit a last-second shot for the win. BASEBALL Lakeside: Adam Hall improved to 2-0 with a 7-1 win over Newton. Hall struck out six and allowed two hits in seven innings pitched. Brad Ernest led the offense with two hits and three RBIs. The Vikings also lost to Kell 11-5. Rob Cosby had three hits while Chad Sitten, John McKinney and Sean Wilson all had two hits. McKinney hit a solo home run. Dunwoody: The Wildcats, which advanced to the Class AAAA state semifinals last season, are 0-4 after losses to Northview (5-2) and Blessed Trinity (8-1). Chris Hale had two hits while Jerric Johnson and Charlie Madden each had an RBI against Northview. Ryan Gaines was tagged with the loss but struck out six and allowed only one hit and no earned runs in four innings. Logan Elliott drove in the Wildcats’ only run of the game against Blessed Trinity. Redan: The Raiders won their first game Feb. 27 3-0 over South Gwinnett. Wesley Jones was the winning pitcher, going six innings with six strikeouts and allowing two hits. He also had two hits and an RBI. Tyler Layton drove in two runs.

TRACK AND FIELD Wildcat Relays, Lovejoy High School Cedar Grove won the girls meet while the Saints finished third in the boys standings, followed by Lakeside and Stone Mountain. There were 22 teams competing. Here are the top individual finishers from DeKalb County teams. For Cedar Grove, Danielle Mitchell won the long jump, Leah Chisolm finished first in the triple jump and Angel Davis won the discus. Amber Townsend was second in the triple jump and Latoya Harze was second in the long jump. The Saints’ girls also won three relay events to beat second-place Woodland-Stockbridge 111-74.5. In the boys meet, the Saints’ Kareem Nicholson won the triple jump and tied for first with teammate Lamont Johnson in the long jump. Marlon Coley won the 100 meters. The Stone Mountain team of Willie Parker, Korey Bryant, Jordan Draughn and Terrell Bloom won the boys 4x200 relay. Also, Lakeside’s Dominic Skinner won the pole vault a 9-feet, 6-inches. Riverwood Invitational, Atlanta The Dunwoody girls won nine events to win the Riverwood Invitational by 50 points over runner-up North Springs. First-place individual winners for the Wildcat girls were Erika Banks (100 and 200 meters), Sadia Yansaneh (400), Alex Cameron (800 and 3,200) and Katie Martin (1,600). The Dunwoody girls also won the 4x100, 4x400 and 4x800 relays. Dunwoody boys who placed first were Dazel Claytor (100 and 200), and Kyle Sexton (3,200). Also, Stephenson’s Lontario Collier finished first in the 400 and the Jaguars won the 4x800. Miller Grove’s Rahiim Aponte won the 800 and the Wolverines’ won the 4x400 relay. Panther Relays, Starr Mill in Fayetteville Towers tied for first place with Westlake in the boys’ standings and Redan placed second to Westlake in the girls’ standings. Bryan Earl of Towers won the 100 and 300 meter hurdles, and Denzeil Byars won the shot put. India Hammond won the 100 hurdles for the Redan girls and the Raiders took first place in the girls’ 4x200 relay.

GIRLS BASKETBALL (state playoffs) Miller Grove: Four players scored in double figures as the Wolverines earned their first trip to the Class AAAA semifinals with a 67-38 win over Rome. Katie Hunt led with 18 points, Tabitha Fudge and Tashi Thompson each added 15, and Klarissa Weaver had 10 points and 11 rebounds. Thompson scored 19 points and Hunt added 16 as the Wolverines beat Forsyth Central 52-45 in the second round. Southwest DeKalb: Nicole Martin and Nekia Sockwell each scored 15 points to help the Panthers defeat Chamblee 55-52 in overtime in the Class AAAA quarterfinals. Martin also had 17 rebounds and Sockwell made two key baskets in overtime, including a layup in the final seconds to seal the win. Jasmine Coleman and Martin each

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The Champion Free Press, Friday, March 9, 2012

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

Cameron Tatum, Tennessee (basketball): The senior from Tucker scored 18 points, one point off his season high, in a 68-61 win over Vanderbilt on March 3. He also scored five of his nine points in overtime in a 74-69 win over LSU on Feb. 29. Yasheeka Jones, Fort Valley State (basketball): The senior from Stephenson was voted MVP of the Southern Intercollegiate Athletic Conference tournament. She scored 46 points in three games, including 16 in a 61-52 win over Tuskegee on March 3 in the championship game. Blake Stevens, Birmingham Southern (baseball): The freshman pitcher from Marist earned his first collegiate victory with a 2-1 win over Huntingdon on March 4. Stevens pitched six innings with eight strikeouts. He is 1-1 with a 2.95 ERA and 22 strikeouts in 21 innings.

Youth baseball registration under way
The Central DeKalb Jaguars are currently registering players for the upcoming youth baseball season. Players must be between the ages of 5-12 to participate. Interested persons can register at Wade Walker Park, 5584 Rockbridge Road in Stone Mountain. The final day to register is March 10, 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Registration will be accepted online through March 9 at The cost is $135 per player. Openings for coaches and players for the Tiny Tot program (ages 3-4) are also available. Registration for that league is $65 per player. Visit for more details.

the Seniors Division 10 and the DeKalb Eagles from Columbia High School in the Senior Division 9. The DeKalb Bulldogs from Chamblee/Lithonia high schools won bronze.

Celebrity golf event to benefit M.L. King football
The inaugural M.L. King Jr. High School Touchdown Club Celebrity Golf tournament is set for April 21 at Sugar Creek Golf Club. The best-ball scramble will begin with a shotgun start at 8:30 p.m. Entry fee is $150 per person or $600 per team. Entry fee includes lunch and trophies for the top three teams. Many NFL players are scheduled to participate, including Keyaron Fox of the Washington Redskins, Sean Jones of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, Gerris Wilkerson of the New York Giants, Kendrell Bell and Arnold Harrison of the Pittsburgh Steelers, Robert Edwards of the New England Patriots, Eric Henderson of the Cincinnati Bengals, George Foster of the Denver Broncos and Derrick Morgan of the Tennessee Titans. There also will be longest drive, closest to the pin and hole-inone contests. Mulligan packages are available for $20. Registration begins at 7 a.m. the day of the tournament and registration ends on April 7. Checks or money orders can be made out to Martin Luther King, Jr. High School Touchdown Club, c/o Josephine Simmons/Clifford Paper Company, 4525 Flat Shoals Parkway, Suite 405, Decatur, GA 30034. For more information, call (404) 243-4954 or e-mail The golf club is at 2706 Bouldercrest Road.

Special Olympics teams win four medals
DeKalb County Special Olympics basketball teams won three gold medals and one bronze medal at the recent State Indoor Winter Olympic Games in Marietta. The DeKalb Angoras consisting of six players from Clarkston High School and three from Towers won gold in the Seniors Division 12 (ages 16-21). Members of the Angoras are players Jakorey Love, Melvin Woods, Kevin Barnett, Danielle Warner, Charlene Jones, Tarneshia Butler, Victor Thomas, Quintavius Ambles and Rasheem Cothran, and coaches Jade Pernell, Jay Rollerson and Cathey Buell. Other teams to win gold were the DeKalb Pirates from Stone Mountain High School in

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