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Horizons April 2013

A publication of the Cumming-Forsyth County Chamber of Commerce

Prestige Members Northside Hospital-Forsyth Premier Corporate Sponsor

Forsyth County Government

The City of Cumming

Georgia Power

DeKalb Office

St. Joseph’s Children’s Healthcare Hospital of Atlanta of Atlanta

The Dentist

jTech Networks

Taubman

Anchor Home Mortgage

Kaiser Permamente

Annual State of Community luncheon is approaching N ext month presents the business community with an important opportunity— the annual State of the Community Lunch, held at 11:30 a.m. May 2 at the Forsyth Conference Center. This event is a great networking opportunity with the business and civic leadership of Cumming and Forsyth County. The Cumming-Forsyth County Chamber of Commerce and the Council for Quality Growth jointly host the luncheon, sponsored by Northside HospitalForsyth and other supporting sponsors. Featured speakers include Forsyth County Schools Board Chairwoman Darla Light, Forsyth County Board of Commissioners Chairman R.J. (Pete) Amos and Cumming Mayor H. Ford Gravitt. Given both the challenges and opportunities facing Forsyth County, this event is important for everyone in the community. New to this year’s program are Amos and Light. “Forsyth County is an amazing community, and I am honored to serve as the District 1 Commissioner and to serve as chairman of the Board of Commissioners,” Amos said. “I look forward to the State of the Community event and to having the opportunity to provide an update on the many exciting projects and initiatives taking place in our county.” “As a first-time chair of the Board of Education, I am

Amos

Gravitt

Light

excited to participate in the Cumming-Forsyth County Chamber of Commerce’s State of the Community event,” Light said. “I look forward to attending this event annually, and this year I am honored to share the outstanding work of our students and staff with the community.” Attendees must register to attend. Tickets are $45 for chamber members and $65 for non-members. Please visit www.cummingforsythchamber.org early to reserve your seat for this historically sold out event!

Earn your MBA in Forsyth County. www.ung.edu/mba (470) 239-3030 DON’T MISS THIS OPPORTUNITY!

Register for an Information Session on April 9 at 7pm. APPLICATION DEADLINE MAY 31


Member Spotlight

Big changes for premier property F

orsyth County's premier collection of shopping, dining, movies and more is making changes that you won't want to miss. Owners of T he Aven u eForsyth recently announced that the property will be rebranded as “The Collection at Forsyth.” Under new ownership, the goal continues to be creating a collection of the area’s finest retailers, restaurants and community events. A joint venture between Atlanta-based Core Property Capital and an affiliate of Starwood Capital Group, a leading private investment firm, purchased the retail center from Cousins Properties in November. The 565,075-square-foot, mixed-use outdoor retail center will continue to offer a collection of premiere restaurants and retailers including Carrabba’s Italian Grill, AMC Forsyth 12 and Atlanta Diamond Design, just to name a few. In addition, Core is creating a new collection of tenants to add to the center. “Our goal is to become a fivestar collection of dining, shopping and services to meet the community’s needs,” said Chad Lund, managing partner at Core. “Our management team is comprised of tenured real estate professionals who live locally

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HORIZONS April 2013

and understand this market and the needs and desires of our guests. We are working to make changes that the community will be excited about as we strive to become the heart of Forsyth and its neighbors.” T h e n ew b r a n d w i l l b e unveiled to the community at a celebration scheduled for Saturday, April 13, from noon to 4 p.m. Festivities will include entertainment from Isabelle, a 2013 “American Idol” top 20 finalist from Alpharetta, as well as a Spring Collection fashion show, jazz musicians, activities for children and special promotions. The Collection at Forsyth is located at 410 Peachtree Pkwy., Cumming, GA 30041. Learn more at collectionforsyth.com or facebook.com/collectionforsyth.


Partners in Education

John Heath and team invest in community

A

s one of the top real estate teams in our area, John Heath and “Your Results Team” believe in investing in our community, our children and our schools with both their time and their money. Through their referral program and desire to give back to the community, Heath’s team will donate $1,000 to the school, church, park and rec team or other

approved nonprofit program of your choice upon closing. Or, if you are moving, you can choose to have $500 donated to the program of your choice and they will rebate the other $500 back to you. To date John Heath has already given nearly $70,000 to our schools and youth mentoring programs through sponsorships, donations and their unique referral rewards

program. Their goal is to reach $100,000 by 2015. Heath is a gold sponsor with the Forsyth County School district and the 2009 Don Hendricks Award recipient. He has been involved with New Educator Orientation for years and is always there to volunteer where help is needed. He is a true professional and Forsyth County Schools value the partnership with Heath and his team.

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Congratulations

Business banquet award winners

Small Business of the Year Under 10 Employees — JTECH Networks “Being a part of this community has been good for our business and good for our clients.”

Small Business of the Year Under 25 Employees — Cumming Dance Academy “For me it was not about money. It was about following my dream and seeing these little kids come in and grow with us in the studio.”

Small Business of the Year Under 50 Employees — Anchor Home Mortgage “We have been successful in involving all [of] our people in that process of getting them to take ownership of their relationships and their relationships with their community and neighbors and whatever it is that they want to be a part of.”

Small Business of the Year with Fifty-plus Employees — Billy Howell Ford “One of the most important or best things for me about being a part of a small business is the family aspect. When you’re one of our customers hopefully we try to treat you as family as well.”

New Business of the Year — Algae Energy “As a chamber member we could not be more pleased with the network opportunities and the support of the Cumming-Forsyth County Chamber of Commerce. We are very pleased to grow our business in Forsyth.”

International Business of the Year — TROX USA “I think the chamber provides that connection of our business to the community. So I think being part of a community as a business you need to belong to a chamber.”

Heritage Award – Scientific Games “Scientific Games has been in Forsyth County since 1992. Scientific Games is a center of manufacturing, technology and global supply- three areas that are very important to our economy.”

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HORIZONS April 2013

Steve Bloom Award — Steve Bloom “At the end of the day being an entrepreneur and small business owner can give you outstanding rewards.”


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Month in Review

The Business Showcase

Torri Westmoreland, Tiffany Dollar and John Westmoreland enjoy the Business Showcase restaurant vendors. Right, guests mingle at the showcase.

Innovation Management Workshop Participants work on idea-stimulation exercises, left, during the Innovation Management Workshop. Right, Experts from Georgia Tech’s Innovation Institute lead discussion. Courtesy Forsyth County News

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HORIZONS April 2013


Month in Review

Business After Hours on the lake

From left, Dr. Jim Morrow, Jeff Mason and Peggie Albrecht

From left, Barton Kimsey, Debra Poirot and Bobby McMillin Caleb Gilbert, left, and Bryan Pietras HORIZONS April 2013

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The solution to your office IT problems! “Ability to learn our business...” What impressed me about JTECH was their ability to learn our business and to add a lot of insight into ways we could improve our business. They know our business and understand what our needs are, sometimes before we do. Vince Raia, President EMC Security

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JTECH gives us a report every month that has the status of everything in our network, all the way down to the PC level. They tell us what to anticipate and budget for and it really makes the IT process invisible to me as an owner. I rely heavily on JTECH to see where we are going to make us more efficient and to grow our business.

JTECH has always kept us at the perfect point where we didn't have too much technology that we were under-utilizing it, but we had enough capacity to grow. JTECH has been a fantastic partner for us. Stefanie Newsome, VP Lazer Spot, Inc.

Chris Stockhoff, President Anchor Home Mortgage

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SBSC

Economic Development International business leaders gather to discuss pertinent issues at a previous roundtable event.

International growth thrives A

ccording to a recent survey by Inc. 500, 77 percent of the CEOs of the nation’s fastest growing companies believe that the economy is in a state of slow growth. Despite this perception, a rising number of foreign companies are seeking to grow in the United States. According to the United Nations C o n f e r e n c e o n Tr a d e a n d D ev e l o p m e n t ’s 2 0 1 2 Wo r l d Investment Report, the United States ranks as the No. 1 recipient of foreign direct investment, receiving over $200 billion in investments from foreign companies. Locally, the city of Cumming and Forsyth County continue to exemplify this trend. According to the Cumming-Forsyth County Chamber of Commerce’s 2012 Economic Development Activity Report, international companies accounted for over 90 percent of the economic development expansion projects that took place within the community during 2012. Additionally, in 2012 companies

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HORIZONS April 2013

such as Korea’s iUS Technologies established its U.S. headquarters in Forsyth County; while Great Britain’s DT Chemicals/ Bio Diesel King established their U.S. headquarters in the city of Cumming. On Friday, April 26, the chamber’s Department of Economic Development will host an International Business Roundtable Meeting at 12600 Deerfield Parkway in Alpharetta. The International Business Roundtable Meeting is a quarterly conference of the decision makers who lead our community’s international companies. These meetings provide the community’s international firms with an opportunity to confidentially discuss the challenges and opportunities that they have encountered over the last several quarters. Forsyth County is home to 62 international companies. More information about the International Business Roundtable Meeting is available online at www.cummingforsythchamber.org.

Seminars help businesses grow, succeed T

his year the Small Business Services Center has seen an uptick of traffic and has held two seminars. The first seminar covered the details of tax changes and the second was a joint lunch event with the chamber’s Women Who Mean Business group. This seminar focused on leadership skills and featured keynote speaker, Jackie S. Martin from the Department of Continuing Education at the University of North Georgia. Moving forward, the SBSC will continue to help small businesses in Forsyth County grow and succeed. The center focuses on three topics: “ G r o w i n g Yo u r B u s i n e s s ,” “Maintaining Your Business” and “Financing Your Business.” The SBSC provides monthly arti-

cles in Horizons to discuss issues that affect business and provide business owners with resources to help them better understand the issues. If you have any questions about the SBSC or would like to get more information on SBSC programming please contact Jason Mock at the chamber. In addition, the SBSC would like to thank our Title Sponsor BB&T for all the work it has done over the years to make these projects happen.

SBSC and WWMB guests enjoyed leadership training at a joint seminar.


Spring Dates

Tourism

Come play in our back yard! F

orsyth County’s Sawnee Mountain Preserve has much to offer all ages. In an effort to promote this great asset the Cumming-Forsyth County Chamber of Commerce and the Forsyth County Outdoor Recreation Department have partnered to launch a marketing campaign. The groups hired Laurie Rowe Communications to draft and execute this marketing plan. The firm’s efforts have been led by Forsyth resident Katie Reeder. Reeder has taken advantage of all of Forsyth County’s parks with her family making her a great fit for this project. The firm began its efforts by distributing a survey to Forsyth County residents. Findings showed that the public had lingering questions about Sawnee Mountain. Mary Helen McGruder of the Sawnee Mountain Foundation was instrumental in working with Reeder

to create a new brochure that will be distributed to all Georgia state welcome centers and leisure tradeshows. N o r t h G e o r g i a ’s O u t d o o r Adventures brochure features Sawnee Mountain Preserve’s treetop canopy walk, hiking, educational programs, tree and rock climbing and so much more. Forsyth County parks offer mountain hiking, white water kayaking, recreational canoeing, passive parks, multi-use trails, seven miles of greenway trails and water trails. Many parks throughout the county are dog-friendly. Groups traveling for adventure or adding to their experience while traveling to the area can find the perfect leisure activities for their family. Visit the following Web sites for great dining, shopping, accommodations and your next exciting adventure: • www.forsythco.com/parks • www.sawneemountain.org

HORIZONS April 2013

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Member FDIC

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Membership Information Member News Express Employment invites guests to Refresh simulcast

E

xpress Employment Professionals is proud to present an exciting leadership event you won’t want to miss. Guy Kawasaki, Terry Bradshaw and Amanda Gore will speak on the qualities and habits of great leaders. Scheduled for Wednesday, April 17, the Refresh Leadership Simulcast will be broadcast at Georgia State U n iv e r s i t y A l p h a r e t t a , 3 7 7 5 Brookside Parkway in Alpharetta. Complimentary breakfast will be served at 8:30 a.m. and the simulcast begins at 9 a.m. For more information and to regis-

ter please e-mail Rodney Moore at Rodney.Moore@Expresspros.com by April 12. There is no cost to attend but optional donations for the Children’s Miracle Network are appreciated.

Gratitude Goodies moves into much larger location

L

o c a l l y - ow n e d G r a t i t u d e Goodies has moved to a new 1,500-square-foot location off Canton Highway in Cumming, twice the size of its previous location. “We had to move to a larger location because our orders have doubled every year since opening in 2009,” said Diane Campbell, owner and CEO. Gratitude Goodies, now in its fifth year of business in the Cumming area has served its clients well by providing a meaningful way to say thank you to businesses with beautiful gift basket designs and gifts.

Welcome New Members • ApplianceSmart, Inc. • Atlanta Plastic Surgery • Big Guys Auto, LLC • Creative Graphic Design • Dependable Tube Vending • Dieffenbacher USA, Inc. • EMC Security • Eric Williams Agency • goAGAINRV • Halcyon Hospice • Hamilton Music & Media LLC • Hester & Associates, Inc. • Home Helpers & Direct Link • iSpring Water Systems, LLC • Key Wireless • Maucere Law Group LLC • Merrill Lynch — Tim Hoag • Omega Learning Center • Peer Synergy Group LLC • Pet Stop of North Georgia, LLC • Pollock Paper and Packaging • RE/MAX Traditions • Sims Moss Kline & Davis LLP • Sun Architectural Products • Taste of Health Vending • The Dentist, LLC • Vanaken & Brack Global Properties • VIPA Automation

HORIZONS April 2013

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Upcoming Events April 2

Women Who Mean Business — 7:30 a.m., Renasant Bank

Member Power Networking Lunch — Noon, J’s Southern Smoke

April 2

April 23

April 9

April 26

April 11

April 30

Member Power Networking Lunch — Noon, Rick Tanner’s Grille & Bar

Member Power Networking Lunch — Noon, Outback Steakhouse

Business After Hours — 5 p.m., Rensasant Bank

April 13

Boulder Dash — 9 a.m., Northside Hospital-Forsyth

Key to the events

April 16

Member Power Networking Lunch — Noon, Longhorn Steakhouse

Real Estate Roundtable — 11 a.m., Location TBA

Member Power Networking Lunch — Noon, Location TBA

May 2

State of the Community Address — 11:30 a.m., Forsyth Conference Center

• Please visit our Event’s Calendar at www.cummingforsythchamber.org to see a full list of events, more information and registration.

Member Power Networking Lunch — Meets every Tuesday at noon at a different location and includes casual networking for 20-35 other business professionals. Business After Hours — Meets the second Tuesday of every month from 5-7 p.m. at a different host location every month. The purpose is networking and to experience new businesses in the community. Women Who Mean Business — Meets the first Tuesday of every month at 7:30 a.m. This is a specialized networking group of over 50 female business professionals. Join them for breakfast.

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Horizons 2013 Officers

Board of Directors

Linda Cole, Chair,

Jerry Bowman

Jason Teter

Jeff Pruitt

David Seago, Past-Chair

Jonathan Green

Lynn Jackson

American Proteins

Northside Hospital-Forsyth

Royce Owens

Drew Walker

Shawn LaFave

Bruce Hagenau Metcam

Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta

Georgia Power - retired

Ann-Margaret Johnston, First Chair-Elect,

Johnston & Associates, Inc.

John Hall, Second Chair-Elect, Forsyth County News

Ann-Margaret Johnston, Secretary/Treasurer

Johnston & Associates, Inc.

Cardinal Logistics Management

Lafarge Aggregates & Concrete

Alliance National Bank

North Georgia Promotions

Chuck Button

Scott Jordan

Forsyth Conference Center Mimms Enterprises

John Rasper

Jacobs Engineering Group

BB&T

Dekalb Office

Mike Caspar

Kevin Garmon

Tim Perry

Walmart

Bank of North Georgia

John Deruki

Cindy Mills

Deruki Construction

Bryan Properties

Nelish Patel

Chris Etheridge

Hampton Inn

Frazier & Deeter, LLC

Bruce Longmore

Tracy Moon

Lenny’s Sub Shop

Fisher & Phillips LLP

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Rep. Mark Hamilton

James McCoy

Ethan Underwood

Fran Forehand

Hon. Phil Smith

Rep. Mike Dudgeon

Randall Toussaint

Mark Bond

Bobby Thomas

Sen. Jack Murphy

Alex Girrbach

Sen. Steve Gooch

Laura Stewart

Rep. Geoff Duncan

Jason Mock

Lipscomb, Johnson, Sleister, Dailey, & Smith LLP

Jim Boff

Chairman, Forsyth County Board of Commissioners

AGL Resources

Terry Smith

A.C. Smith Poultry Co.

Wells Fargo

Doug Derrer

Bill Cupp

Russell Landscape

Scott Kuhn

Jay Ryerse

United Community Bank

AT&T

Bob Russell

Chamber Staff

Bert Durand

Paul Chambers

Citizen’s Bank

Ex-Officio

Tom Cleveland

Chair, Forsyth County Board of Education

Dr. Buster Evans

Superintendent, Forsyth County Schools

Jtech Networks, LLC

Georgia Power

Hayes, James & Associates, Inc.

H. Ford Gravitt

Mayor, City of Cumming

Blake House Sawnee EMC

Jon McDaniel

Forsyth County Manager

State Court Judge

Chair, Forsyth County Development Authority

Sherman Day

North Georgia College & State University

Dr. Joanne Tolleson Lanier Technical College

Forsyth County Public Library

President & CEO

Vice President of Economic Development

Director of Operations

Director of Communications & Events

Director of Small Business Services

Anna Barlow

Director of Tourism Development

Jimmy Lane, Jeremiah Dickerson Mary Helen McGruder Sawnee Mountain Foundation

Sales Executives

Maggie Schmitz, Sherri Klug Administrative Assistants

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We’re honored to serve you It’s an honor to be recognized as the nation’s leading hospital for maternity and newborn care. Look a little closer and you’ll discover that Northside performs more surgeries and diagnoses and treats more breast and gynecologic cancer than any other hospital in Georgia. While people chooseNorthside for our expertise, they also know us for our exceptional compassionate care. Visit us online at www.northside.com

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HORIZONS April 2013

Horizons April 2013  

Forsyth County's Horizons Chamber section for April 2013!

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