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ROME Life TWENTY UNDER FORTY

Class of 2018

Published by Rome News-Tribune May 2018

ROME LIFE COVER MAY 2018 - 2nd Version 1

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—VOTE MAY 22, 201 8—

MatsonForJudge.com Meet Emily:

Emily’s Principles:

Emily’s Experience:

- Age: 38 - Married to Patrick Matson

- Uphold the Georgia and US Constitutions

- Mother to Beau (7), Lily (5) and Jack (2)

- Administer justice without regard to rich or poor

- Licensed to practice law in the Georgia Superior Court, Court of Appeals, Supreme Court, and US District Court

- Born and raised in Rome

- Honor our community values

- Graduated summa cum laude from Berry College, Juris Doctor from Regent University School of Law

- Maintain safety of our homes, schools and churches

- Active member of Seven Hills Fellowship and leads “Busy Ladies” Bible study

- She has appeared in 19 Superior Courts and every court in Floyd County - Has tried hundreds of cases including: divorce, custody, TROs, jury trials, habeas corpus, DFCS and adoptions - Volunteered thousands of probono hours to non-profits, churches, women's outreach, and indigent parents

Follow Emily on Facebook at Emily Matson for Judge or call 706-622-2001 2 Rome Life May 2018 ROME_2 2

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HERITAGE HONDA

HERITAGE BUICK/GMC

HERITAGE NISSAN

706-291-2277 965 Veterans Memorial HWY NE Rome, GA 30161 www.heritageromehonda.com

706-291-2277 965 Veterans Memorial HWY NE Rome, GA 30161 www.gmcrome.com

706-291-1981 1500 Veterans Memorial HWY NE Rome, GA 30161 www.romenissan.com

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PROUD TO BE SERVING ROME FOR 29 YEARS


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ROME Life May 2018 Volume 4, Issue 2

PUBLISHER Otis Raybon VICE PRESIDENT OF OPERATIONS Doug Crow ROME LIFE EDITOR Severo Avila

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EDITORIAL STAFF Michelle Wilson, Diane Wagner, Jeremy Stewart, Doug Walker, Blake Silvers, Spencer Lahr

ADVERTISING STAFF Cecilia Crow, Renee Blankenship, Jamie Bennett, Thomas Wegner, Jennifer Futch, Jennifer Culberson, Stephanie Justice, Billy Steele GRAPHIC DESIGNERS Tona Deaton, Lee Field, Manning Burns, Erin Barkwell Rome Life is published quarterly by the Rome News-Tribune. To advertise, call 706-290-5220.

Alton Holman Heritage Arts Inc............................................................. Brinson, Askew, Berry............................................................................... City of Rome............................................................................................ Darlington School.................................................................................... Dempsey Auction Company................................................................. Diprima Shoes........................................................................................... Dogwood Books....................................................................................... Elegancia Boutique................................................................................. Emily Matson............................................................................................. Ford, Gittings & Kane.............................................................................. Forum River Center................................................................................. Georgia Highlands College................................................................... Georgia Power........................................................................................ *HRUJLD·V5RPH2IÀFHRI7RXULVP GMC Value Mart..................................................................................... Goo Goo Car Wash................................................................................ Gravy Boat............................................................................................... Harbin Clinic............................................................................................. Hawthorn Suites by Wyndham............................................................... Henderson & Sons Funeral Home.......................................................... Heritage First Bank................................................................................... Heritage Auto Group.............................................................................. Jerusalem Express..................................................................................... Joe Hill’s Lawnmower Shop.................................................................... Kawasaki Sports Center.......................................................................... Kay Ann Wetherington........................................................................... Lavender Mountain Hardware.............................................................. Line-X of Rome........................................................................................ Lodge 210................................................................................................ Mel and Mimi........................................................................................... Merle Norman.......................................................................................... Miracle Ear................................................................................................ Pick O’Deli................................................................................................ Pineapple Place...................................................................................... Redmond Regional Hospital.................................................................. Riverpoint Luxury Apartments................................................................ Riverside Auto Group.............................................................................. Salmon Funeral Home............................................................................. Shrimp Boat.............................................................................................. Studio Siri................................................................................................... Swerve Off The Patch............................................................................. Sylvan Learning Center.......................................................................... The Season Events................................................................................... Troy’s BBQ................................................................................................. United Community Bank......................................................................... Walker’s Landscaping............................................................................. Watters & Associates Landscape.......................................................... Whistle Britches.......................................................................................... Winshape Retreat.................................................................................... Yellow Door Antiques & Art.................................................................... YMCA........................................................................................................

65 6 42 58 20 6 42 63 2 55 54 13 46 42 15 36 17 68 66 53 61 3 17 42 8 7 4 14 39 56 57 16 17 58 5 37 67 8 17 63 65 65 65 17 59 43 35 38 60 42 65

Vegetables & Fruits • Organic & Heirloom Seeds • Bonnie Vegetable Plants • Fruit Trees • Blueberries • Grapes • Blackberries • Raspberries • Figs Knockout Rose Collection • Double Reds • Double Pinks • Sunny & Drift Southern Living Plant Collection • Sunshine Ligustrum • Lemon Lime Nandina • Southgate Rhododendron Ferns • Boston • Macho • Kimberly Queen

Annuals & Perennials Encore Azaleas • Repeat BloomersGreat Selection Landscaping Services We make it easy to have a beautiful landscape! Ask about our planting & maintenance services. Custom Container Design We’re really good at this! • Any Size Container • Hanging Baskets • Troughs • Miniature BES Gardens T

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4065 Martha Berry Hwy Rome, GA 706-295-0299

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“I COULDN’T TALK. MY THOUGHTS WER RE JUMBLED.” JUMBLED. WERE For my health, I choose hoose Redmond. Redm m

Bobby Stroke Survivor

Bobby was at his restaurant when he realized that he couldn’t speak and his thoughts were jumbled. He was taken by ambulance to Redmond’s ER where the stroke team was waiting for him. The rapid diagnosis allowed Bobby to be treated with the clot dissolving medicine tPA within 17 minutes of arrival to improve blood flow to his brain. Forty-five hours after arrival, Bobby left the hospital with no effects from the stroke. Now he is back to running his restaurant and working on his farm.

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Learn more about stroke symptoms or tell us your story at

MyRedmondStory.com 501 Redmond Rd NW, Rome, GA 30165 • (706) 291-0291

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Inside this issue... Index of Advertisers

4

From the Publisher

8

Bike Race Across Georgia begins in Rome

9

Kids Corner

14

Everyone Needs a Break

18

20 Under 40 Class of 2018

21

Rome Braves 2018 Schedule and Calendar

36

Inspired by the Young

39

RiverPoint Luxury Apartments

40

Multitasking Mom

44

Destination Morocco

47

The Social Scene

54

Entrepreneurship and Your Future

66

54

47 21

Congratulations,

40

Lee Carter Top20 Under

40

Lee Carter has been recognized as a Super Lawyers Rising Star for his professional excellence. We are equally as proud of his commitment to our community.

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Congratulations, Lee!

DiPrimaâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Shoes Brinson-Askew.com | 706.291.8853

Calhoun

Car tersville

Rome

706-629-5365

770-387-9454

706-234-7463

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on e t Vo y 22! Ma

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g n i t c e t o r P n e e as B H n n A Kay

r e v rO o F es i l i m a F ty n u o C d Floy

s ear Y 20

ce

Poli f o er Ord l a rn rate F e h by t d e ors End

ACADEMIC AND PROFESSIONAL BACKGROUND:

COMMUNITY INVOLVEMENT:

• Undergraduate degree in Economics from New York University, 1986 • Graduate of Pace University School of Law, 1992 • Admitted to State Bar of Georgia, 1993 • 25 years of legal experience, including both criminal and civil litigation • Former associate of the law firm of Rogers, Magruder, Hoyt, Sumner & Brinson for 5 years • Civil experience includes insurance defense litigation, real estate, probate, estate planning and family law • 20 years in Rome District Attorney’s office as Assistant District Attorney • Criminal Experience includes hundreds of jury trials and other criminal matters including bond hearings, arraignments, probation revocations, civil asset forfeitures and appeals

• Advisory Board Member, Georgia Northwestern Techincal College Criminal Justice Program • Past President, Rome Bar Association • Graduate of Leadership Rome, 1998 • Former Board Member, Exchange Club Family Resource Center • Former Board Member, Open Door Home • Former Board Member, Georgia Highlands College Foundation • Former Board Member, Floyd Healthcare Foundation Annual Fund Committee • Sustaining Member of Junior Service League of Rome • Member Xavier Chapter of Daughters of the American Revolution

Paid for by the Committee to elect Kay Ann Wetherington

e Life May 2018 ROME_7 7

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www.kayann.info


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Guest Columnist

Spring is a great time to be in Rome and Floyd County Otis Raybon

Welcome Spring! What a beautiful and fun time of the year. Barbara and I have followed my newspaper career across many beautiful communities in Georgia and Mississippi. We agree that Rome and Floyd County, actually all of Northwest Georgia, offer the very best area we know of to raise a family. While Georgia is blessed with many cities and towns that are beautiful in their own manner we believe Rome is as pretty and welcoming — especially in spring — as any place we have called home. This issue of Rome Life magazine includes some of the places that add to the quality of life residents and visitors enjoy. You may be aware of many interesting and little known sites that you suggest to family and friends and we would appreciate an email including photo, names, and a brief description of the special spot. We will share your photos with the readers of Rome Life, Rome News Tribune, rn-t.com, RNT Facebook, RNT twitter, and RNT Instagram. Since spring is a time of renewal we chose this time of year for Rome Life to begin our annual 20 under 40 features. While our community has many positive qualities we all know that young people represent our future. I know you will be impressed with the 20 individuals selected. All are unique in their own way and contribute their time and talents — personally and professionally — to many business, environmental, medical, social, spiritual, and other avenues of community service. Each year we have selected these individuals we are encouraged that the locale we love to call home has strong leadership pushing us along. Spring in Rome offers many events that get folks up and out of the cold winter routines. Foot races, bicyclists, walkers, kids enjoying the fountain at the town green, High School and College graduations, and much more bring an increased involvement and excitement to our community.

Included in this edition is a feature on the 38th annual Bike Ride Across Georgia. The bike ride will begin in Rome and will bring more than 800 cyclists some of who will spend the night in Rome. This should be an exciting event to watch and if you are a cyclist participate in. Be sure to read the column by Dr. Paula Englis, Professor of Management at Berry College. Dr. Englis leads an entrepreneurship program that helps students start and grow their businesses. Her column highlights some of the success stories of current and former students. A sure sign spring has sprung here is when the Rome Braves return and start a new season at State Mutual Stadium. If you haven’t attended a game this season, get tickets and take your family out for a fun filled game. We have lots more in this issue and I hope you enjoy reading. We appreciate our advertisers and readers. Happy Spring!

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by Doug Walker

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T

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here aren’t many things as colorful in the world of sport than a major cycling event. Rome will provide the palate for an explosion of color in June as the start line for the annual Bike Ride Across Georgia. This year, the one-week event will take close to 1,200 riders across the North Georgia mountains to Hartwell. Riders will check in June 2 and start the cross-state ride the following day. Greater Rome Convention and Visitors Bureau Executive Director Lisa Smith said hotel rooms in Rome are close to sold out for that Saturday night, June 2. The ride traces its roots to 1980 when it was

started at the Great GASBE, an acronym for Georgia’s Annual State Bicycling Event. The inaugural ride took cycling enthusiasts from Savannah to Columbus. BRAG Director Franklin Johnson said Rome has been the starting point for BRAG twice in the past. The 1990 ride was from Rome to Al-bany and the ‘96 ride was from Rome to August. Twice Rome has been the end of the first leg of the ride, in 1997 and again in 2002. This year, the event will feature legs from Rome to Dalton. The first leg of the ride out from Rome features a more than 1,400 foot in-crease in elevation from the 14 mile mark to the just past the 29 mile mark.

Riders will leave the Forum River Center, go up Broad Street a couple of blocks to Riverside Parkway past State Mutual Stadium, out the Armuchee Connector to Old Dalton Road then to Everett Springs Road and The Pocket. From Dalton it’s on to Jasper, then Jasper to Dahlonega where riders will get a day off. Then it’s on from Dahlonega to Clarkesville, Clarkesville to Toccoa, and then Toccoa to the finish at Hartwell. Darren Williams has ridden BRAG each of the past two years. “I’ve been cycling for over 20 years,” Williams said. “I just thought it would be good to do a multi-day adventure. I heard about BRAG and it

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“Sometimes, you can just think,” Carey said. “It’s good and you end up seeing parts of other communities you might not have thought about going to visit.” Carey will be riding this year, but isn’t sure yet if he’s going to ride the whole week or do the BRAG Lite — any three consecutive days of the event. Rome physician James Douglas, his wife Laurie and sons Samuel, James and William have ridden parts of the BRAG, but not the whole week-long ride. “We have never done the whole week. When the kids were little we did three days,” Douglas said. He said the most challenging part was

near the end of the rides on days when it was particularly hot. “The key to me is getting started early,” he said. “You certainly need to be training for it. You need to ride three or four times a week and start working on your distance.” BRAG is not to be confused with a race. It’s strictly a leisurely ride designed to show off the beauty of Georgia and promote cycling as an activity the entire family can enjoy. Close to 1,200 riders will pay fees ranging from $160 for children to $360 for adults to enjoy riding 269 miles up and down the mountains of North Georgia for a week.

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seemed like it would be right up my alley.” Williams said the most challenging thing is getting up, packing your gear, then riding for four or five hours. “After six days of doing that you long for a real bed,” Williams said. He’s one of perhaps 15 people from Rome planning to ride in the event this year. Rome businessman Chris Carey said one of the hardest things about riding BRAG — which he has done three times — is just finding the time to take off from work. He said when he can arrange it, that the ride is “good for the soul.” He said he could be riding with a group or riding by himself.

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“It’s good and you end up seeing parts of other communities you might not have thought about going to visit.” -Chris Carey

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“The key to me is getting started early, you certainly need to be training for it. You need to ride three or four times a week and start working on your distance.” -James Douglas

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Students at Georgia Highlands College are Take Chargers. They know that compared to other colleges, they wonâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t find a better education with a better value anywhere. They come to GHC to succeed and you can, too. Choose from two-year and four-year degrees to charge up your future or recharge your career.

path 706-802-5000

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highlands.edu ds ed Rome Life May 2018

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Take Charge of Your Future. Apply Now!


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Compiled by Spencer Lahr

Student Pethel 5th Grade

A horse pooper scooper.

Kileigh

Teacher. I’m not always giving them a hard time.

If you could have any job, what would it be?

A lawyer.

What is a good age to retire?

What age do you think people should get a job?

How much do you think you should get paid for going to school?

What do you think your mom’s dream job would be?

65 - 70

21

Billions

A teacher (which she is)

Interior decorator.

60

17

$20 a day.

A Coca-Cola Sampler.

President

English Professor at UGA

60

Third Year of High School.

$3 Trillion billion per second.

A Governor of everything.

Hollis Whitaker 3rd Grade

Authors - Because they have to come up with all those ideas for books.

Actor in Comedy Movies.

55-60

17

Honestly, with me, you’re getting a free education you shouldn’t be paid at all

A teacher (which she currently is as AES)

Ceaira

Obviously my mom because she works with boys.

Not to have one. I just want to be a cowgirl.

50

10-15 They can be a doctor.

A trillion.

18 because high schoolers are pretty crazy my mom (high school teacher) says. I don’t think they should get hired.

Well teachers have to get some money too, so $30 an hour Teachers should get more because they have to deal with drama.

23

$50

5th Grade

Georgia Sisk 5th Grade

3rd Grade

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What do you think is the hardest job someone could have?

Kelsey Arp 3rd Grade

First Lady because she has to deal with all the drama from the president.

Marine Biologist.

55 because at 60 you’d say my back is starting to hurt.

Brantley Patch 3rd Grade

A doctor because they have to know all about what’s in the human body.

Social Studies Teacher. It’s really intersting.

68

A zookeeper. She loves elephants so much.

Coach the Golden State Warriors

A banker (what she does now)

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What do you think is the hardest job someone could have?

Student Gracelynn Phillips Kindergarten West Central

Odeh 1st Grade West Central

3ROLFH2IÀFHU

Professional 5XQQHU

What is a good age to retire?

What age do you think people should get a job?

How much do you think you should get paid for going to school?

What do you think your mom’s dream job would be?

100

25, almost like a grown up

$20 D\HDU

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50

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25

20

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Hairdresser

55

21

$0, learning is to be given for Free

Chef because she cooks a little bit of everything

If you could have any job, what would it be?

Wendy’s Worker who is the last person there and I could eat ZKDW·VOHIW

Sophia Luu 2nd Grade West Central

Mother

Professional *DPHU

Alyssa Austin 3rd Grade West Central

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D’Khalin Stocks 4th Grade West Central Yoshelyn Rodriguez 5th Grade West Central

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Professional YouTuber (Making comedy Videos)

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Life May 2018

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Wednesday, noon - 10pm MEMORIAL DAY July 4 • 12INDEPENDENCE DAY


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Student

If you could have any job, what would it be?

What is a good age to retire?

What age do you think people should get a job?

How much do you think you should get paid for going to school?

16

35

$6 because what do you do at school DQ\ZD\V

She would like WRPDNH&'V

Only $3,000

A foot GRFWRU

What do you think your momâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s dream job would be?

Ryder Corbin Kindergarten Montessori

A Police 2IÃ&#x20AC;FHU

Ronik Patel 1st Grade Montessori

A high school SULQFLSDO

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Taking out the WUDVK<RXKDYH the urge to run EXW\RXFDQ·W

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Ben 2nd Grade Montessori Callie 3rd Grade Montessori

Jason Whetchel 4th Grade Montessori

Lawyer because they have to argue a bunch of cases and itâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s UHDOO\VWUHVVIXO

Lily Cantrell 5th Grade Montessori

A teacher because they have to teach HYHU\WKLQJ

URGENT NOTICE: You may be qualified to participate in a special Field Test of new hearing instrument technology being held at a local test site.

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What do you think is the hardest job someone could have?

3ROLFH2IÃ&#x20AC;FHU RU)LUHÃ&#x20AC;JKWHU but they donâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t get paid a lot RIPRQH\

FIELD TEST CANDIDATES WANTED Miracle-Ear a industry leader in digital hearing devices is sponsoring a product field test in your area next week and they have asked us to select up to 15 qualified candidates to participate. They are interested in determining the benefits of GENIUSâ&#x201E;¢ 3.0 Technology in eliminating the difficulty hearing aid users experience in difficult environments, such as those with background noise or multiple talkers. Candidates in other test areas have reported very POSITIVE FEEDBACK SO FAR.

TO PARTICIPATE: Tuesday, May 1st through Thursday, 1) You must be one of the first 15 people to call our Miracle-Ear Center Rome office at 770-884-4607 - Mention Code: 18MayTest. 2) You will be required to have your hearing tested in our 479 Turner McCall Blvd office, FREE OF CHARGE, to determine candidacy. Rome, GA 30165 3) Report your results with the hearing instruments to the Hearing Care Specialist over a three week test period. Qualified candidates will be selected on a first-come, first-served basis so please call us today at 770-884-4607 TODAY to secure your spot in the Product Field Test.

May 31st

FIELD TEST PARTICIPANTS Will be tested and selected same-day.

16 Rome Life May 2018 ROME_14 15 16 kids pages 16

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Everyone needs a break

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by Michelle Wilson

Everyone needs a break from their kids once in a while — for date night, shopping, quiet time, adult conversation or even a few days away. For some, it’s as easy as calling a family friend or a trusted neigh-borhood teenager to help. But for foster parents, getting that time alone can be a little more difficult. There are a few more rules that foster parents must follow before leaving their children alone. For example, the caregiver must be older than 18. The caregiver must be a person who is trusted completely by the foster parents. If something happens in someone else’s care, the responsibility lies with the foster parents. For trips where the adults are going to be gone longer than a couple of days, the state has to give advanced approval and those caring for the foster children must be recognized as qualified foster parents themselves. Area churches, through a collaborative effort with Restoration Rome, are stepping in once a month to take care of these families so the parents can have some time to themselves or work on tasks that are hard to do when trying to watch a child at the same time. Local volunteers go through extensive screening by their churches before they can participate in the program. Rebecca Story’s church — Pleasant Valley North Baptist Church — is one of the churches that provides care once a month for a few hours. Sometimes it’s at night, sometimes it’s in the morning, but it’s all to help local foster families. It’s

a mission that members of her church take very seriously. “We try to make our first emphasis really tapping into a community,” Story said. Her church usually sponsors at least three of these events each year. One event might be held on a Friday night for a few hours and then the next event might be held on a Saturday morning for a few hours. “It has allowed us to reach two different groups,” Story said. “For me, as a parent, knowing that somebody cares, is loving and is praying for my child — that is a peace of mind. It gives [the foster parents] a comfort of knowing they’re not alone. Parenting is the hardest job you’ve ever had. We struggle as parents. You question yourself. But with fos-ter care, there’s another agency looking at you under the microscope. It makes the pressure greater. Having to be in that alone has to be terrible.” Rome parents Lauren and Brandon have been fostering for almost a year. They currently care for a one-year-old and a three-year-old who are in the foster care system and are appreciative of the area

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“For me, as a parent, knowing that somebody cares, is loving and is praying for my child — that is a peace of mind. -Rebecca” Story

been able to help provide a good place for care while caregivers had a few hours’ break. “It gave a safe place for kids so the parents could feel good. It was rare that they ever got any kind of break. .... churches can help with that by offering them a night out or a morning out.” For Story, it’s only natural to reach out and help families where the birth parents are not present for their children. “We couldn’t turn our backs,” she said. “It’s biblical — to care for the orphans and the widows. … I love the fact that we can love on them the way Christ loves us. We hope that they know that even on their darkest day, they are loved. They are worth it. They are of value.” In addition to giving foster parents, grandparents raising children and other family members raising children a break and giving children a fun, safe place to be with other children like themselves, the program also gives families a whole new group of friends who can support each other. “It helps build a community we couldn’t build ourselves,” Lauren said. For people who are interested in their church taking part in the program, or individuals who are interested in taking part of the program because they are a caregiver themselves and need a few hours each month for a date night or to get certain tasks done, more information is available by calling Restoration Rome at 706-528-4033.

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churches’ ministry to help parents just like them. “It’s so helpful for us,” Lauren said. “One of the hard things about being a foster parent is that your family expands unexpectedly. There’s not a lot of time when the next child might be processed and be placed in your home, and you need time to reconnect and get on the same page. [Foster parents’ night/morning out] is a great time for us to re-connect. We may go out to dinner or for coffee. Sometimes we just sit on the sofa. It’s a time for us to refresh, knowing the kids are safe and well taken care of. And when they come back, we can just be better parents for them.” The program has its roots at First Methodist Church of Rome. Some years ago, the church held a foster Morning Out program once a month. But that program eventually ended. The Floyd Faith Coalition of Families opened the program again, in-volving more churches so one church wouldn’t have to bear the burden of sponsoring the program. “This has worked very well,” said Mary Margaret Mauer, senior vice president of foster care services at Restoration Rome. “These [date times] are important in supporting our foster parents and in giving them a much needed break.” Mauer said there are about 15 area churches that have sponsored these events for foster parents. The date nights / mornings are also open to grandparents who are raising grandchildren and family members who might be raising nieces or nephews or other relatives from within their family. “In a church setting, it was a safe place,” Mauer said, referring to how much the churches have


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COURT ORDERED ESTATE

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MANY OF THESE PROPERTIES TO BE SOLD ABSOLUTE, REGARDLESS OF PRICE TO THE HIGHEST BIDDER

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This auction offers the opportunity to own some of Cherokee County’s finest Real Estate, some never before offered for public sale. Shad Ellis spent a lifetime amassing a diverse and incredible portfolio of property that will be sold at Public Auction. Inspect early, do your homework and plan to attend one of Northeast Alabama’s largest auction events!!

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Rome and Floyd County are well

This stunning photo, capturing the mist rising above the Berry College reservoir, was submitted by Cal Callaway Photography for a previous issue of Rome Life and we decided to use it as the lead-in page for our 20 Under 40 feature.

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represented in the Rome Life picks for our annual 20 Under 40 edition. These locals are impacting the community each in their own special but profound way. Their contributions to our quality of life cannot be overlooked. They are teachers, doctors, humanitarians, athletes, activists and so much more. They are your coworkers, your friends and your neighbors. Rome Life is proud to present the 20 Under 40 Class of 2018.


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Class of 2018

TWENTY UNDER FORTY

Class of 2018 Chantz McClinic • 32

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Education: Bachelor’s in sociology from Wake Forest University It’s always about the people for Chantz McClinic. People make up the team. The associate operations manager at Southeastern Mills serves on the Rome-Floyd County YMCA executive board and devotes much of his spare time to coaching youth sports. A Darlington School football standout, he went on to play for Wake Forest University in Winston-Salem, North Carolina, where he earned a bachelor’s degree in sociology. “I grew up not even 300 yards from the YMCA; grew up going to camps there, playing sports there,” Chantz said. “I’m the product of good coaching and, to me, it’s giving back to the community.” A multi-sport athlete, McClinic competed in track, basketball, lacrosse and football. By his junior year at Wake Forest, he was a starting linebacker for the Demon Deacons. He said his decision to major in sociology, with a minor in psychology, came naturally. “I had an interest in people,” he said. “Why people do what they do, in groups and as individuals, is very intriguing.” Right out of college, he spent two years as a social worker in the Washington, D.C., public school system. He came back to his hometown in 2011 as the youth director for the YMCA, where he worked until the management opportunity opened up at Southeastern Mills in 2013. But McClinic’s commitment to the Y didn’t end with his new job. In addition to his coaching, he also heads up the nonprofit’s facilities initiative. “We’re taking a hard look at the parking situation right now,” he said. “It’s easy to sustain membership, but we really need more parking.” Married to “my beautiful Whitney Shelton” last year, McClinic says the couple is focused on building a bright future in Rome. He also serves on the Darlington Alumni Council, formed in 2010 to groom the next generation of leadership for the school.

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Class of 2018 William James • 38 By Diane Wagner

A father with lung cancer and a passion for outdoor activities led William James to follow his dream. Today, it’s looking like the sky’s the limit. “Everything’s really taken off in the last few years,” he said. Before he even hit 30, James founded Summit Quest in Rome. The nonprofit organization offers free recreational programs to families with children fighting cancer, to bring them closer together. This month, they’re launching their first Base Camp Family Retreat, a two-day event focused on reflection, play and fellowship. It’s a confirmation of their success, and building on the connections they helped forge. “These are families we’ve worked with that we feel can benefit from a little more empowerment,” James said. “It will be a time for them to share in some activities, some art therapy, some paddle-boarding ... They lean on Summit Quest for support, but they also lean on each other.” Summit Quest truly has been a labor of love for William and his own family. He and his wife, Tara, a nursing student at the time, came up with the idea on a 2007 climbing trip up Flattop Mountain in Alaska to scatter his father’s ashes. William said that as he watched his father struggle with lung cancer for several years, he realized the disease attacks families as well as the individual. A graduate of the National Outdoor Leadership School based in Landers, Wyoming, he was certified in a range of skills such as swift water rescue, wilderness first responder, rock climbing and canoeing. He worked first at Inner Harbour, a program for troubled adolescents in Rockmart, and then for the Boys & Girls Clubs of Rome. The couple saw a need in the community and Summit Quest seemed like a natural response. “With Tara’s background in the medical field and my background in youth development, I knew this is what we needed to be doing,” William said. It began with outdoor adventure trips that led to Circle at the Summit, monthly outings to events like a fall festival or the movies. “It’s a chance for families to escape and bond with others in similar situations,” William explained. They also established Team Summit Quest, a health and wellness initiative to get families participating in 5K runs and health walks. Along the way, James picked up a host of recognitions for his service. As a volunteer at Redmond Regional Medical Center’s cancer center, he received the prestigious Georgia Hospital Association’s Heroes Award. He’s been a Heart of the Community honoree, earned Redmond’s Frist Humanitarian Award, the Surviving to Share humanitarian award and an appreciation of service award from the Martin Luther King Commission of Rome. Still, William keeps looking for more ways to help children and their families overcome, at least for a moment, the draining effects of cancer.

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“We have families involved in treatment, families who are survivors and families who, unfortunately, are dealing with the loss of a loved one,” he said. While he dropped out of the University of West Georgia to enter the Outdoor Leadership School, William recently went back to get a degree. He graduated from Shorter University with a bachelor’s degree in business management. The decision was motivated by the growing success of Summit Quest, and his growing family. “I’ve got twin boys now and I wanted to be able to tell them school is important,” he said with a laugh. Tara works full time now as a nurse practitioner at Gordon Hospital, although she still volunteers for William. Their twins — Chase and Eli — turn 5 this month. But outdoor adventuring remains something they do for fun as well as for work. William took up ultra running and completed a 57-mile race last year to honor his father. This year he’s training for a 50-mile race in Cloudland Canyon set for December. “Other than that, I do Summit Quest,” he said. “And I love hanging out and going on adventures with my two little boys.”

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Class of 2018 Alex Routt • 36 Education: Graduate of Armuchee High School Alex Routt wants to change local culture. And he’s doing it out of his gym — Crossfit Chariot. Alex has been a firefighter with the Rome Fire Department for seven years. “I like the adventure,” he said. “I like the action. I love doing this job for the community. I really enjoy the time I spend with the men and women I work with and we get to support our community and keep it safe. We’re a real family and we do an important job.” To become a firefighter, Alex had to pass a physical. And to do that, he started doing Crossfit workouts to stay in shape. He’s been doing it ever since and said it’s a bit of an addiction. Four years ago he and his dad opened Crossfit Chariot in West Rome and even though his dad passed away last year, Alex has carried on his mission of changing the local culture to one of physical fitness and nutritional responsibility. He jokes that he’s going to create unstoppable fitness cyborgs but said he wants a healthy food culture and a maturity about what we put into our bodies to become mainstream for everyone. Even when he’s not at the gym, Alex is still helping people stay fit. At the fire department he helps with the daily physical fitness routines for rookies. Alex fosters an atmosphere of positivity and inclusion at his gym. “People from all walks of life come in and feel supported from the very first minute,” he said. “No one is judging you, no one’s looking down on you. Everyone is there for the same reason — to be a little better. We celebrate each other’s achievements.” Alex said work and discipline are the great equalizers. Some of his proudest moments are when he sees changes in people who put in the time and effort. “We all have strengths and weaknesses,” he said. “There are different workouts that cater to different body types but everyone at my gym is treated with respect and is celebrated. We’re a family.” Alex hopes that through his gym and his work as a firefighter, that he can begin have a lasting impact on the community he loves. He and his wife met when both attended Armuchee High School. They now live in West Rome and have two children, Samson and Sadie.

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Knox Kadum • 17 Knox Kadum isn’t just the quarterback of a two-time state championship high school football team. That’s a huge accomplishment, sure. But it’s only one of the reasons we thought he should be in our 20-Under-40 Class of 2018. He’s also a polite, well-mannered young man with a good head on his shoulders who is representing his school, his family and this community in a positive way. Knox is a great example of someone who is making the most of his talents. He’s been a startinq quarterback for Rome High since he was a freshman. He’s a 2-time Rome NewsTribune All Area offensive player of the year. This past season he threw for 2,046 yards and 23 touchdowns and he ran for another 737 yards and 11 touchdowns. But what we really like about Knox is that even with all his accomplishments on the football field, he’s reluctant to take any of the credit for himself. Knox credits his family, parents Jason and Leslie and big brother Zach, with helping helping to develop his character. And he’s not even taking credit for his success on the field. “I’ve got great, hardworking teammates and awesome coaches,” he said. “They make me look good. It’s all about the team and what we can accomplish together.” Since he’s pretty well known in Rome, Knox uses that popularity in positive ways. For the past two years, he has bashfully agreed to be a model for “An Evening on the Runway,” an annual event which benefits the Historic Desoto Theatre Foundation. Well known Romans model for local stores and boutiques in hopes of raising money for the foundation. “I always have fun at that event and it’s for a great cause,” Knox said.

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Class of 2018 Chas Jackson • 37 Education: Darlington School 1998, Medical College of Georgia. He is certified by the American Board of Internal Medicine and Cardiovascular Disease. He did his residency at the Emory University School of Medicine and a fellowship in cardiovascular medicine and interventional cardiology at Emory University School of Medicine. He is currently a cardiologist employed by the Harbin Clinic. Chas, like his twin brother Cline, has known since childhood that he wanted to a be a physician. “I remember in sixth grade we learned human biology in science and I was really enthralled by it,” Chas said. He didn’t always think he was going to be a cardiologist but said there was no question that he would come home to Floyd County to practice. He did interview at a few other places outside Rome, but said that coming back home had always been his plan. “I’m a homebody and knew I didn’t want to raise my kids in Atlanta,” Chas said. “How can it be better than going back home where everybody knows you? I don’t know what I would have done if they hadn’t of have a spot for me at the Harbin Clinic.” At first Chas thought about specializing in gastroenterology, “but I got motion sickness during endoscopies.” He fell in love with cardiology during his residency at Emory, where he was mentored by 90year old Willis Hurst. “This seems urgent, this seems important,” he said. Chas said it’s been a real blessing to be able to help people in the community where he grew up. We think the Rome community is lucky to have a talented, dedicated medical professional with a commitment to his roots.

Cline Jackson • 37

At one point really early in his life, Cline Jackson thought he wanted to be an astronaut. It didn’t take long before he knew he wanted to go into the field of medicine. Cline grew up in a large family in Cave Spring and said that when he played soldiers as a youngster he always played the role of a medic. His decision to study medicine was also influenced by several members of his large, extended family who were in health care. “I’ve always wanted to be helpful when people are hurting,” Cline said. He chose to pursue a career in emergency medicine after going through the usual rotations at medical school and realizing that a career in a family medicine-related field was really what he felt best suited for. “When that moment of need hits people, I know I’ve got to be there,” Cline said. Like his twin brother Chas, Cline said there was never any real question that he would return to his roots in Floyd County to continue his career. He started his career at the Cartersville Medical Center in 2008, but moved to the Floyd Medical Center a year later, basically as soon as there was an opening, and has been there ever since.

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Education: Darlington School 1998, Medical College of Georgia, Residency in Emergency Medicine, Medical College of Georgia. He is certified by American Board of Emergency Medicine in Emergency Medicine.


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Class of 2018 Sherica Bailey • 37

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By Severo Avila Sherica Bailey thought she wanted to be a nurse when she got out of high school. So when she graduated, she began working at a hospital to see what it was like. And she also did hair part time. She soon realized that being a nurse wasn’t her calling. But a teacher named Miss Frankie saw something in Sherica’s work as a hair stylist. So she entered the high schooler in a styling contest. Sherica was the first runner up in the contest - the only high schooler to place. That changed everything. I realized that I had a talent for doing hair and that I shouldn’t waste that talent. So she enrolled in a cosmetology program at a community college in her native North Carolina. In 2005 Sherica moved to Rome. In the years to follow, she began building her hair styling resume. She worked at salons including Smart Styles in Walmart to Great Clips in Cartersville. Then she became a stylist at local salons such as Shiela B’s and Hair Story (under the guidance of the late Holly Moore). These salons, with their different practices and polices and their diverse array of clients helped Sherica build a solid groundwork for what was to come. “I learned a whole lot from the women at these salons,” she said. “They taught me so much. And I absorbed so much. I watched and listened and really learned a lot about the industry and about myself during this time.” She learned about marketing and commuication. She learned hair strategy, color and a wide variety of styles. She learned about customer service. And she learned that maybe she’d like to own her own salon. “I was either an employee at these salons or I was renting a booth there and I knew I didn’t want to keep doing that,” she said. And althought it was scary at first, Sherica made a bold move and opened her own salon - Wraps Styling Salon - in 2010. The shop is thriving. Sherica knew she wanted a salon that offered a relaxing, comfortable atmosphere but one that was professional and drama-free. “I didn’t know that at 30 I’d open my own salon, she said. “But I realized that I wanted more and I could do more. I just had to work for it and trust in God.” Now Sherica is busy Monday through Saturday. Her salon is constantly evolving and grown. She makes sure that it’s not just somewhere people go to “get their hair done.” It’s fun and energetic. And she’s the boss. Being the boss comes with its own set of headaches but one thing it does afford Sherica to do is to set her own house. That’s important to the mom of three (Aaron, Alay and Derrick Jr.) who has to pick up kids from school, drive to track meets, dance lessons, after school programs and also make time to be cook and clean and help with homework.

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“I’m a 9-5 working stylist,” she said. “And I’m a full-time business owner and full-time mom. That’s a lot to juggle but I’ve found a good balance between work and family priorities.” Sherica said she’s had some loyal customers who have followed her from salon to salon throughout the years and who still go to her today. She’s thankful for that. “I want young peole to know that if I can be successful then they can too,” she said. “I didn’t know that at 30 I’d own my own salong. But now I’m thinking ‘what can I do at 40?’ I might open a chain of salons.” “I’d tell anyone with a goal and with dreams to step out on faith. Put that fear aside. Trust in God. He’ll make it possible. But you got to put the work in. You have to get out there and make it happen too.” Sherica is living proof that hard work pays off and is an asset to our community not just because she’s a successful business owner, but because she represents determination and perseverance. “Of course I was scared to step out there and open my own salon,” she said. “But you know what? I realized one day that I deserve more. Why not me? Why not my dreams? Why not my big plans? Let’s do this.”

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Class of 2018 Audrey Kendrick • 26 Education: A graduate of Appalachian State University, Audrey has a Bachelor of Science degree in building science related to architectural technology and design, a Bachelor of Science in appropriate technology and minored in community and regional planning. Making an impact on a community can be accomplished through many different avenues, just as a community is made up of many different elements combined together. People are one important part. But the places in it can evoke a community’s spirit and character on the same scale. That’s where Audrey Kendrick is making her mark on Rome and Floyd County. As an architectural designer and project manager at CEVIAN Design Lab, Kendrick is involved in designing some of the newest structures sprouting up in our community. But as chairwoman of the Rome Historic Preservation Commission, she helps oversee the development of the existing buildings that provide Rome with its place among historic cities across the country. Audrey is invested in this community and she’s investing in this community. “Positively contributing to my community through its built environment is an accomplishment I am proud of, and an opportunity I am blessed to pursue each day,” Audrey said. “Also, my husband and I recently purchased a historic home, and I am excited and proud to say we are now homeowners.” A native of Boone, North Carolina, Audrey is a member of Rome’s Downtown Development Design Committee, an associated member of the American Institute of Architects and a graduate of the Leadership Rome program. She has participated in the architectural design of the Rome Tennis Center at Berry College, the new Sisters Theatre at Berry College, and Floyd Medical Center’s new Rome Urgent Care, among several other projects in and around Rome. “Every day I learn something new, whether it’s related to structures, construction, engineering, or simply managing a business. And accompanying my professional goals is the goal of continuing to positively contribute to my community, whether through its built environment or through other areas where I can play a part,” she said. Audrey discovered a love for competitive rock climbing in college. She admits she has struggled to keep up the activity in recent years since focusing on her career, but she has kept up a healthy love of traveling. “I have had the opportunity to travel to New Zealand, study abroad in Austria, rock climb in France, and drink wine in Italy,” she said. “The next adventure will be planning a honeymoon with my husband.”

For Rome High School senior and valedictorian Jaaie Varshney, the idea of three guaranteed study-abroad trips if she chooses to attend the University of Georgia is extremely enticing. The 18-year-old, who spent pre-K through sixth grade at Montessori School of Rome, is a recipient of the Foundation Fellowship Scholarship through the university. And in addition to providing a full-ride, it sets her up for three fully-funded trips, included six to eight weeks at Oxford University her freshman year. Varshney is looking into a pre-med track — her mother is a psychiatrist — with a focus on neuroscience, as well as studying geography, a love of hers gained from numerous trips with her parents to Europe, Asia and Latin America. She is interested in combining these interests into possibly joining Doctors Without Borders. Varshney was named a STAR student this year, for her SAT score and GPA, and is a commended student in the National Merit Scholarship Program and an AP Scholar with Distinction. She is the president of her senior class, a student ambassador for Rome High and co-president of the school’s environmental club. She has also participated in the Yale Young Global Scholars program and a biomedical research workshop in San Diego. She is deeply involved in dance — she performed in the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day parade — and spends 15 hours a weekend teaching classes in Duluth in addition to her own practices each day. Jaaie is one Rome resident who’s making big steps toward a bright future and she makes the community proud.

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Class of 2018 Courtnay Williams • 29 Education: 2007 graduate of Rome High School, 2011 graduate of Tuskegee University with a Bachelor of Arts degree in political science and a minor in business administration. Owning a home can help a person’s life fall into place, and Courtnay Williams-Griffin is enthusiastic about making that dream come true for those who may need some help to achieve that. Courtnay is the grant program manager for the city of Rome’s Community Development Department, helping oversee several of the department’s programs, with the main objective being housing, both getting people in newly-built homes and renovating existing homes for those in need. “Although a lot of my job is tracking these grants through DCA and HUD, the fun part of my job is I get to meet clients one-on-one who need assistance and help them achieve the goal of owning their own home,” Courtnay said. One of the department’s recent projects has been the construction and marketing of five singlefamily homes on Wilson Avenue for low- to moderate-income families built through a Community Home Investment Program grant. Courtnay works with people who meet the grant’s specifications to get qualified for a home loan through a financial institution. She started with the city’s senior rehab program, which focused on making senior citizens’ houses safer. Since she meets with many of the families who need assistance, these grants and applications become more personal. Finding a way to get people into their own homes becomes more important to her. They’re not just names on a form. They’re part of her community. “You see the people in the community that need assistance get it and you’re a major arm in making that happen,” she said. “Those relationships are just really awesome.” “It is hard sometimes because you have to have a heart for service to do this job, and there are going to be a lot of people who you really want to help but can’t because federal funds are very specific in their usage. But there may be other things that they need where you can allocate your resources as best as possible and figure out other partnerships in the community that can help them.” Courtney is a graduate of Leadership Rome and has been an active member in both the Junior Service League of Rome and Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority Inc., a nonprofit service sorority. She has also coached the Rome Middle School sixth-grade football cheerleaders for the last four years.

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James Schroeder • 35 In 2011, teacher and self-taught artist James Schroeder got an idea in his head that he was going to start a parade. He jokes it would have just been him walking down Broad Street banging on pots to draw the attention of passersby. But it’s become quite a bit more than that. The Ginger Pride Parade has turned anti-bullying into a rallying cry since that time and has grown from just a couple dozen paradegoers to hundreds, James says. The parade was sparked by an incident in his classroom, where a student made a nasty comment to him. Instead of getting the student in trouble, he sought to collect a few locals and start a parade to combat the act, aiming to encourage creative ways to deal with bullying and alternative ways of dealing with emotions. A graduate of Rome High and Shorter University, James is the son of John and Tracy Schroeder. The 35-year-old teaches art and drama at Rockmart High School. He previously taught at Model, and when he was there he began to develop an artistic style which is on display at Swift & Finch and downtown restaurants. Schroeder said his kids liked art but did not care much for history. So he began painting murals of historic moments and figures, engaging both his love of history and creativity, to keep the past alive in his students’ minds. His art — done through trial and error with not specific rules — has become a side hustle, as it appears in museums and is sold to individual customers. “It’s something that I love doing,” he said. “I have all these ideas in my head and it would be a waste to not express them.” James wants to see more public murals and street art in Rome, to “make things pop a little bit,” he said. Galleries are fine and all, but he wants art out in the open for all to see.

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Class of 2018 Lee Carter • 35 Education: Juris Doctor degree from the University of Georgia School of Law and a Bachelor of Arts degree in history and Political Science from the University of Georgia. As a partner at the law firm Brinson, Askew, Berry, Seigler, Richardson and Davis, Lee’s job includes helping people. But his passions outside of work lean that way as well as he has been an active member in organizations that nurture youth development and provide assistance in securing homes. “They sort of go hand in hand,” Lee said. “I mean, people hate the word ‘lawyer.’ So the last thing they want to do is hire a lawyer, because typically that means something bad has happened. The fact is, on a regular basis, part of my job is to help people navigate whatever issue they’re facing. That sort of blends into non-profit work and trying to solve whatever cause that organization is trying to address.” Carter serves on the executive committee of the Northwest Georgia Council of Boy Scouts of America, as well as the Council’s Board of Reviews, which oversees the application process for Eagle Scouts and interviews applicants. He is a past president of the Rome Seven Hills Rotary Club, a past member of the board of directors for Coosa Valley Habitat for Humanity and a graduate of Leadership Rome. Carter’s upbringing in Rome helped lay the groundwork for his values and passions. He started with the Boy Scouts when he was 10, joining Troop 113. One of his Scoutmasters was Andy Davis, who is now his partner with the law firm. He grew through the Scouts, getting mentored by many people, including past president of the Northwest Georgia Council of Boy Scouts Thad Watters, and earned the rank of Eagle Scout. “That relationship — getting involved in Scouts, becoming an Eagle Scout, learning from Andy and Thad Watters — has been a big part of my growing up,” Lee said. His biggest hobby right now is spending time with his 2-year-old daughter, Ann, but he likes fly fishing, cycling and running. “Anything outside,” Lee said. “I just don’t do enough of it.”

Ghee Wilson • 36 Education: Bachelor’s in criminal justice and master’s in public administration from Columbus State University

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Helping to bust up the notorious Ghostface Gangsters prison gang is the most recent notch in Ghee Wilson’s belt as a special agent with the Georgia Department of Corrections. But the Rome native already has a solid history of translating his law enforcement experience into actions that better his community. The Shop With A Cop program, the Sexual Assault Center of Northwest Georgia and, now, the Salvation Army are all beneficiaries of his commitment. Wilson said his volunteer ethic was ingrained at a young age, beginning with his father’s involvement with a Christmas program for needy children and families at the Coosa paper mill where he worked. “As long as I can remember, since I was 5 or 6, I was going with Dad,” he said. “I really enjoy helping people … It’s one of the things I grew up with and it stuck.” During his 13 years with the Floyd County Sheriff’s Office, he rose to the presidency of the Coosa Valley Fraternal Order of Police where he coordinated the Shop With A Cop program. The FOP’s outreach remains important to him. “It gives us an opportunity to interact with a lot of people who typically do not come in contact with law enforcement in the best circumstances,” he said. “It drives me up the wall to see a parent say ‘If you don’t behave, that police officer will take you to jail.’ We want kids to know it’s safe to ask a police officer for help.” He joined the Sexual Assault Center’s board of directors out of a similar motivation — in support of their work as both victim advocates and prevention educators in local schools. And last month he accepted a nomination to The Salvation Army of Rome board of directors. “Being in local law enforcement as long as I was, I came in contact with people down on their luck who needed a place to stay,” he said. “I know the good work The Salvation Army does here.” He also serves on the Floyd County Planning Commission and was a member of the 2017 SPLOST Citizens Advisory Committee and Rome-Floyd Citizens for Progress. He and his wife, Lindsay Wilson, have a daughter, Sawyer, who turns 3 this month.

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Class of 2018 Justin Strickland • 40

Nic Diaz • 25

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Graduated from East Coweta High School in Sharpsburg in 2011, graduated from Berry College in 2015, currently employed as a marketing and sales assistant with the Greater Rome Convention and Visitors Bureau. Nic Diaz is quick to point out that even though he’s been in Rome since he started Berry in the late summer of 2011, he’s still learning a lot about the community. He’s equally quick to tell you he really enjoys telling others about what makes Rome and Floyd County a really special place. When he didn’t hear back from job applications with some of the major PR firms in Atlanta, he decided to check out the GRCVB while training. another student at Berry. “I decided parents and students would like to know more about what’s going on in Rome,” Nic said. “Because of that Berry bubble, it’s hard to get off campus, so the first five months at the office here were really exploratory and there was a huge surprise around every corner. I was missing so much at the time.” Nic has become a bit of a “foodie” for the GRCVB and is an ambassador of sorts for the community, leading visitors and Rome residents alike on monthly food tours downtown. His passion for food and for promoting the community make him a valuable asset on the front lines of local tourism. His tours are entertaining and educational as he talks not only about the food and drinks participants get to enjoy, but he also includes bits of information about history, architecture and local social events. “I used to be a strictly picky eater,” Nic said. “I had the idea for the food tours in 2016. I decided to make the region’s cheapest food tour but you’re also not begging for it to end early. I negotiate everything beforehand but a lot of the restaurants add more.” And he doesn’t stop at food when it comes to making people feel welcome downtown. On weekends, Nic drives the Roman Chariot golf cart shuttles around Rome, chatting with visitors and offering up tips that might help them choose a place to eat and visit. This Berry grad is making sure locals and visitors alike see and taste the best of what Rome has to offer.

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Justin Strickland is a great example of determination, drive and persistence. The Rome resident is a pharmacist at Bradford’s Drug Store in Cedartown. But when he’s not behind the counter, Justin’s running... and running. And he can’t seem to stop. He’s an ultra runner which means that Justin regularly runs races and events of more than 50 miles. He sometimes runs 100 miles in a single event. “Years ago I started running because my wife and I had quit playing tennis regularly when our little girl was born,” he said. “It was just a way for me to keep the weight off. But in 2010 I wanted to run the Peachtree Roadrace. Then I wanted to start that race in the front of the pack. I wanted to be in the lead group. That was the goal.” So Justin began training to be in the lead group at the Peachtree, a massively popular 10k in Atlanta each Fourth of July. He accomplished that and his best time has been a little over 42 minutes. He’d still like to run that under 40 minutes. Then he discovered marathons and realized people were doing longer distances than that. So he was determined to accomplish that too. For the past few years Justin has been running in ultra events — grueling races that test the mind and body. They take him dozens of miles on steep, rocky terrain or on wooded trails or hard concrete in the heat or the cold. He’s gone from cramping and throwing up during his first marathon to now being able to push his body to its limits running 50 miles and more over several hours. But Justin has a new goal he’s been working toward — a goal that has taken years to build toward ... and a goal he might never achieve. Justin would like to be able to enter the Barkley Marathons, an ultramarathon trail race held in Tennessee each year. The full course is about 100 miles and runners must complete it in a 60-hour period. It’s almost impossible. And Justin wants to try. So his training is pretty rigorous. He averages 55 to 65 miles a week for training runs depending on the weather and temperature. Most of his mileage is done at Berry College but he uses the city’s trails as well. Justin is living proof that it’s not always about the end result. It’s about the work you put in to get there. The Barkley Marathons are notoriously difficult to get into, let alone do well in. And he knows that. But he’s doing everything he can just for the chance to put his name in the hat next year to MAYBE get accepted. “I know it may never happen but I want to keep my mileage up and have my body ready in case my name is called,” he said. “You’ve got to have that goal to stay motivated.”

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Class of 2018 Kane Quinones • 23

During high school, Kane Quinones had never considered Berry, or any private school, as a choice for college. After an uncle who had attended insisted that he’d like it, he gave the world’s largest campus a look. Thanksgiving break of his senior year of high school, Quinones took a tour of the Berry campus and fell in love. “I was so excited on the way home I actually got a speeding ticket,” Quinones said. The only problem was finding a way to pay for a private school education. His financial worries were soon laid to rest, however. The Douglasville native had never heard of the Winshape Foundation, but was asked to apply for work there before he had even graduated high school. The work-study opportunity he was eventually given through Winshape, along with a need-based scholarship program opened the door financially for Quinones to afford private school tuition. In exchange for scholarship funds from the Bonner Foundation, Quinones was required to volunteer in the community 10 hours per week during college and two summers of service. While earning an economics degree from Berry, Quinones worked as a Year One Specialist at Winshape, coordinating events and mentoring and providing support to youth from broken homes. “Winshape is a lot of relationship building,” Quinones said. “A lot of our curriculum at Winshape is gift and talent discovery and how the Lord has created us individually, how we fit on teams together and what we can contribute.” The same opportunities that allowed Quinones to afford his tuition, led him down a long path of service in Rome and Floyd County. Quinones started his local service at the Habitat for Humanity ReStore and Red Cross. He later started working at Summit Quest, an organization that provides support services for children and families of those affected by cancer. He credits William James, the executive director and founder of Summit Quest, with his approach to community service and outreach. “He’s been a huge mentor in my life.” Quinones also met his wife Abby while working at Summit Quest. The couple was married on March 24. James also pushed Quinones to go even further in his local service. “He sat me down one day and said ‘Kane why haven’t you started a baseball program at the Boys and Girls Club?’ He told me to think about it, pray about it and if I decided not to I’d be fired,” Quinones laughingly recalled. Quinones, a lover of the sport, eventually found it a perfect fit. Quinones called his team of kids the West Rome Pride. “Like a pride of lions, everyone is powerful alone, but even stronger as a group.” The semester-long program started with 12 kids and had 27 by the second semester. “It was very cool to give them space to run around, but in an organized way. We built a field at the Boys and Girls Club and had over 100 people show up, including parents, professors and students from Berry.” The baseball program has continued, even since Quinones graduated. A group of students associated with Berry and

Winshape hang out with the kids twice a week, helping with homework and then playing baseball. Quinones says the program is about building relationships and providing stable role models. “That’s probably my biggest legacy that I’ve been blessed enough to leave.” Aside from his community service, Quinones has also started the Crooked Sticks podcast, an undertaking he never thought he’d tackle. “I saw so much hate and division everywhere I looked.” Quinones said he wanted to help show that people from different backgrounds, particularly Christians, are similar and can relate to each other. “I want people to listen and know that they’re not too broken, they’re not too far gone and whatever their particular circumstance or view on something is… there’s still a straight line to be drawn from that, a truth that I believe comes through the Gospel,” Quinones explained. “It’s not so much about my voice, but giving other people a platform. Even if it’s five listens, that means that five more people have heard about Christ that day.” Crooked Sticks can be found on both iTunes and SoundCloud.

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Class of 2018 Story Vernon • 18

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By Jeremy Stewart It was on a whim that Story Vernon first got involved with the North Broad Youth Center. She followed a friend into a new situation and discovering that it was the start of something very special for her. That’s where the Pepperell High School senior developed a relationship with the children of the North Broad Youth Center. But what it’s developed into is a passion to bring food, support and care to a section of community that needed it. Three times a week, Story comes to the center through her employment with the YMCA and brings food to kids who come there as part of the YMCA’s Outreach Feeding Program. She then helps tutor some of the youngest ones and helps them with their homework. “It was really amazing to see the work pay off there,” Story said. “There are some kids who are really far behind, and the North Broad Youth Center is the only place where they can get that special attention that they need.” In February, Story was presented the George Pullen Community Leadership Award for Youth by the Rome-Floyd County Commission on Children and Youth for her work at the center as well as her other volunteer and extracurricular activities. Story first came to the center last summer through one of her friends. She didn’t know what to expect, but she quickly began to understand. “Every day, kids would show up and we would play kick ball or basketball. Sometimes we would have reading days. And we would feed the kids every day,” she said. “It was a lot of fun, and I didn’t realize how much it impacted the community around there, because some of these kids have absolutely nothing. Some would come every day with no shoes on and walk there. At that point, the youth center was really the only thing in their life.” After going every day during the week in the summer, Story was asked by Stephanie McElhone — her supervisor at the YMCA of Rome and Floyd County — if she wanted to take part in their after school care program and continue to work at the North Broad Youth Center. One thing that has had the biggest impact on her is being able to provide food to the kids — sometimes over 50 each day. During the summer, she helped put together what they call “backpack buddies” full of non-perishable food they could take home over the weekend. “There are some kids who act like they’ve never eaten before and they tear into everything they have and ask for more,” she said. “We try to give every kid as much food as we possibly can.”

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Story works with the youngest kids at the center, those in pre-K through first grade. Each kid gets 15 minutes to work on homework themselves and then she goes around and helps them with class work and any areas in which they may be struggling. She said she has become more in tune with helping the ones who are falling behind the most, working with their reading and learning the alphabet. With many of them easily distracted, Story tries to use different methods to help them focus. “It’s really about making it fun for the kids so they will want to do it,” she said. “You can see what they need work on and just focus on that. But it’s gotten to the point where these kids come in and they know what they need to do. The improvement is showing.” Vernon is also involved in the drama program at Pepperell High School as well as the Floyd County Schools system-wide musicals the last two years. She has volunteered at the Rebecca Blaylock Child Development Center through her work with the Pepperell student council and donates blood and platelets on a regular basis. The Rome native has been accepted to Kennesaw State University, where she plans on majoring in nursing with a minor in social services.

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Class of 2018 Mandy Maloney • 37 Education: studied Communications at Columbus State As the executive director of Rome Area Council for the Arts, Mandy Maloney is plugged into her passion — the arts. And this extends to her work as operations manager for the Historic DeSoto Theatre Foundation. “I can directly see the impact the arts have had on my own life,“ she explains. “I started out as a quiet and shy, imaginative, girl who preferred to read books. But being involved in the theater taught me how to get up and speak, to take rejection, to step outside myself and see things with a broader eye.” Maloney, who’s married to Nathan Maloney, homeschools their two children, Millie, 9, and Henry, 6. She encourages her kids’ involvement in Shakespeare in the Park activities, just as she encourages other children in the community through her work with Rome Little Theatre’s youth camp programs. “Art is for growth. There are no negatives,” she says. “It’s having a collective, shared experience. Art works for good.” Her enthusiasm netted her a slot in the prestigious Arts Leaders of Metro Atlanta training program. The program provides opportunities to hear from corporate and foundation leaders who fund the arts, attend workshops at institutions such as the Woodruff Arts Center, and brainstorm with other arts advocates about policies, problems and solutions. Maloney said she’s learned a lot about her job just by doing it, but ALMA has given her additional tools. She’s gotten help with grants, been inspired by others, and learned about the importance of sharing with local elected officials the benefits of music, dance, theater and the visual arts. With her vibrant, outgoing personality and her determination, Mandy is making a positive impact on our community in a very important arena — the arts. “It’s our community’s culture,” she said. “I’ve found that I won’t have a fulfilled life if I’m only working for a paycheck. Helping others see the value of arts is the paycheck of the soul that I need.”

Trey Salmon • 29

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“I was scared to death,” Trey Salmon says of opening his own funeral home as a recently married 29-year-old in December 2016. He had almost a decade of experience when he ventured into starting his own business — Salmon Funeral Home and Cremation Services — originally getting into funeral service at Jennings Funeral Home in March 2008. The Model High and Shorter University graduate went on to be a full-time apprentice funeral director and embalmer at Good Shepherd Funeral Home. After working there for several years, he started school at Gupton-Jones College of Funeral Service in Decatur. Following graduation, his dream of having his own funeral home was coming closer to reality, and, in September 2016, he resigned from Good Shepherd to pursue it. “It’s kind of a calling, you’d say,” Trey says. As a young business owner, Trey says managing employees older than him has been a learning curve and everyday is a learning experience. However, he feels supported by his experienced staff. In the funeral service business, it’s essential to be involved in all aspects of the community, from church activities to meetings of civic organizations, to be compassionate and let people know he is here to help them in times of grief. He wants to be a support for those community members during some of the darkest times of their lives. Trey also aims to add a crematory, and he and his staff have been training in cremation and the arrangements for it. It is an up-and-coming service that has drawn increased interest over the years — before he started in the business it was not something many funeral home directors were looking into, and many are now trying to catch up. Since opening his own funeral home, Salmon said one of the most important lessons he has learned came from one mistake. “Always call the newspaper to make sure they have the obits,” he says, adding he has not made that mistake again.

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Class of 2018 Tannika Wester • 37

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By Blake Silvers

It isn’t very surprising to find that someone who is active in Rome and Floyd County is a transplant, but how Tannika Wester ended up thousands of miles from her place of birth is a bit unique. Northwest Georgia wasn’t always home for Darlington’s Tannika Wester. For her, it all started in the Northwest Territories of Canada in Fort McMurray, Alberta. “I’m often asked how I ended up here,” Tannika said. “My grandparents bought a house in Rome in the 70s as a home base while my grandfather worked overseas, and three of my uncles ended up attending Berry. We moved here to be closer to my mom’s family.” Her family eventually opened Rhythm & Cues on Broad Street, though her parents have since moved back north. “Both of my parents returned to Canada after I graduated from high school, but I decided to stay here,” she said. “I love Rome and Floyd County. I cannot think of a better place to live and work in. I also continue to be surprised how many Canadian Romans there are here.” Having been in Floyd County since 1990, Wester considers the area her home. “I’m a dual citizen and am very proud of my Canadian heritage, but having lived here for 28 years I really consider Rome to be my home,” she said. Tannika graduated from Rome High School and then earned her Bachelor of Arts degree in Communications from Berry College. She now works as Darlington School’s director of communications, where she’s worked for 14 years. “I truly feel like I have the best job in the world,” she said. “I can honestly say I am inspired every single day. It is a dream job.” Wester doesn’t just live and work in Floyd County, however. She’s also very active in the community. She volunteered as part of the Citizens for Progress SPLOST promotion effort in 2013 and has been on the board of the Sexual Assault Center of Northwest Georgia for seven years. “I continue to be amazed by the incredible work this organization does in Rome and our surrounding communities,” she said. After dancing in the inaugural event in 2011, Wester almost immediately joined the board of the Rome Celebrity Dance Challenge. “When I joined, we had two employees and thought we’d attempt a Dancing With the Stars-type fundraiser. That year, we raised $44,000 and we were thrilled. Seven years later, the Rome Celebrity Dance Challenge is consistently topping $170,000 annually.”

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A graduate of the Rome-Floyd Chamber’s Leadership Rome Class of XXIV, Tannika has also been involved with the inaugural Run for the Rescues planning committee, the Rome-Floyd Chamber’s Young Professionals planning committee, local organizing committees for Hospitality House’s Walk a Mile in Her Shoes and the Dodge Tour de Georgia, the Board of Directors for the Greater Rome Convention and Visitors Bureau and the Rome International Film Festival, and as a mentor with Rome-Floyd Communities in Schools. She has also participated in Harbor House Child Advocacy Center’s Adult Spell Off. As for why she chooses to be so involved in the community, Tannika said “we all live here, so why not jump in and make Floyd County the best it can be?” She also encourages others to also be involved. “One of the things I love about our community is that it’s so easy to get involved,” she said. “Just find something you are passionate about and jump into it. It’s that easy, I promise.”

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ROME BRAVES 2018 ROSTER PROMOTIONAL& Calendar

ROSTER

Derian Cruz #7 Outfielders Riley Delgado #8 Jefrey Ramos # 22 Jean Carlos Encarnacion #14 Garrison Schwartz #4 Kurt Hoekstra #13 Drew Waters #11 Luis Mejia #9 Isranel Wilson #5

Anthony Nunez #2 Vic Scarpone Matt Peyton

Managers & Coaches Rocket Wheeler #18 Dan Meyer #53 Bobby Moore #1

Infielders Griffin Benson #23

JUNE GAMES

JULY GAMES

AUGUST GAMES

Fri June 1

Sun July 1

Wed Aug

Sat June 2

Sun June 3 Fri June 8

Sat June 9

Sun June 10 Fri June 15

Sat June 16

Sun June 17

Sun June 24 Mon June 25 Tue June 26

Sat June 30

7:00 Presented by RJ Young Rome Braves T-Shirt Giveaway, Adult XL 1,000* Flat Screen Friday 6:00 Presented by Rome News Tribune Appearance by Rally entertainment act. Fan Appreciation Night. 2:00 Family Fun Day, Social Media Sunday, Kids Run the Bases 7:00 Presented by Hometown Headlines Rome Braves 6-Can Tube Cooler Giveaway 1,000* Flat Screen Friday 6:00 Presented by South 93.5 Country Western Theme Night: come dressed in your favorite country/western attire. Fan Appreciation Night 2:00 Family Fun Day, Social Media Sunday, Kids Run the Bases 7:00 Presented by Harbin Clinic SALLY League Championship Bobblehead Series, 3 of 4: Max Fried 1,000* Flat Screen Friday 6:00 Parrott Head Paradise Night. Fan Appreciation Night. Team Jersey Auction Series, 2 of 3: “Parrott Head” Theme Post Game Concert 2:00 Father’s Day Play Catch With Dad in the outfield prior to the game Family Fun Day, Social Media Sunday, Kids Run the Bases 2:00 Family Fun Day, Social Media Sunday, Kids Run the Bases 7:00 Ladies Night. Bark in the Park. 1:00 Business Person Special: Bartow County Chamber “Networking & Business During Hours” on The Terrace $2 Tuesday sponsored by Rome News Tribune 6:00 Presented by Rome News Tribune Batting Practice Jersey Giveaway, Adult XL 1,000* Fan Appreciation Night

Mon July 2 Tue July 3

Sat July 7

Sun July 8 Mon July 9 Thur July 19

Fri July 20

Sat July 21

Sun July 22 Mon July 23 Tue July 24 Wed July 25

Thur July 26

Mon July 30 Tue July 31

2:00 Family Fun Day, Social Media Sunday, Kids Run the Bases 7:00 Ladies Night. Bark in the Park. 7:00 Presented by Chick-fil-A Independence Day Celebration & Post-Game Fireworks Tenor Timothy Miller to perform the National Anthem & God Bless America 6:00 Presented by Pirelli Tire SALLY League Championship Bobblehead Series, 4 of 4: Kolby Allard 1,000* Fan Appreciation Night 2:00 Family Fun Day, Social Media Sunday, Kids Run the Bases 7:00 Ladies Night. Bark in the Park. 7:00 Thirsty Thursday. Tommy Want Wingy Night. Princess & Pirate Theme Night: $4 Box / $3 GA ticket by dressing up in your favorite princess or pirate attire 7:00 Presented by Lowe’s & South 93.5 Rome Braves Camo Cap Giveaway 1,000* Military Appreciation Night. Flat Screen Friday. 6:00 Presented by State Mutual & 104.9 The Rebel Rome Braves Seat Cushion Giveaway 1,000* Fan Appreciation Night 2:00 Family Fun Day, Social Media Sunday, Kids Run the Bases 7:00 Ladies Night. Bark in the Park. 7:00 $2 Tuesday sponsored by Rome News Tribune 1:00 Business Person Special: Chattooga County Chamber “Networking & Business During Hours” on The Terrace Web Wednesday. WINning Wednesday. 7:00 Thirsty Thursday. Tommy Want Wingy Night. Super Hero Theme Night: $4 Box / $3 GA ticket by dressing up in your favorite Super Hero costume or attire 7:00 Ladies Night. Bark in the Park. 7:00 $2 Tuesday sponsored by Rome News Tribune

Tue Aug 7 Wed Aug 8 Thur Aug 9

Fri Aug 10

Sat Aug 11

Sun Aug 12 Mon Aug 13 Thur Aug 23

Fri Aug 24

Sat Aug 25

Sun Aug 26 Mon Aug 27 Tue Aug 28 Wed Aug 29 Thurs Aug 30

Pitchers

11:00 Business Person Special: Etowah County Chamber “Networking & Business During Hours” on The Terrace Web Wednesday. WINning Wednesday. 7:00 $2 Tuesday sponsored by Rome News Tribune 7:00 Web Wednesday. WINning Wednesday. 7:00 Thirsty Thursday. Tommy Want Wingy Night. College Football Theme Night: $4 Box / $3 GA ticket if wearing your favorite college football team’s apparel 7:00 Presented by Hometown Headlines Appearance by Breakin’ BBoy McCoy entertainment act. Flat Screen Friday. 6:00 Team Jersey Auction Series, 3 of 3: “Black Tie” Theme Fan Appreciation Night 2:00 Family Fun Day, Social Media Sunday, Kids Run the Bases 7:00 Ladies Night. Bark in the Park. 7:00 Thirsty Thursday. Tommy Want Wingy Night. Georgia Northwestern Technical College Night: $4 Box / $3 GA ticket if wearing school apparel or showing school ID 7:00 “Rome Braves History Mystery Gate Giveaway” 1,000* we will clean out the promotional closet for a mystery gate giveaway item Flat Screen Friday 6:00 Presented by Belhaven University and the Rome News Tribune Post-Game Fireworks. Fan Appreciation Night. 2:00 Family Fun Day, Social Media Sunday, Kids Run the Bases 7:00 Ladies Night. Bark in the Park. 7:00 $2 Tuesday sponsored by Rome News Tribune 7:00 Web Wednesday. WINning Wednesday. 7:00 Thirsty Thursday. Tommy Want Wingy Night. Reinhardt University & Dalton State College Night: $4 Box / $3 GA ticket if wearing school apparel or showing school ID

Tanner Allison #25 Jacob Belinda #24 Walter Borkovich #33 Thomas Burrows #40 Jasseel De La Cruz #30 Odalvi Javier #50 Kyle Muller #12 Alan Rangel #55 Kelvin Rodriguez #43 Freddy Tarnok #20 Brandon White #39 Huascar Ynoa #34 Bruce Zimmerman #28

Catchers Alan Crowley #26 Drew Lugbauer #15 Carlos Martinez #19

Dates, appearances and items listed subject to change. Items for the first 1,000 fans (not tickets) entering the park - ticket holders must be present.

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“Together we can rock the world”

WHISTLE BRITCHES

Shop Downtown Rome, GA

200 Broad Street • Suite 100 • Rome, GA Follow Us On Instagram: @whistlebritchesrome Facebook: Whistle Britches Rome

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Guest Columnist

Let the young people in this magazine inspire us to do a little more Severo Avila

And you don’t even have to help an established organization. Take blankets or water or food to a homeless person. Pick up trash on the side of the street or road. Tutor a student who needs help, foster a child, be a scout troop leader, foster a dog or cat, cut an old lady’s grass... there are so many things we can each do that will make our community just a tiny bit better. Let’s do it.

The

Lodge

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210 East 2

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Ave. Downtown Rome • 706 204 8724

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Every time we do a 20-Under-40 issue I feel like I’ve done nothing with my life. The young people we feature every year work hard and are ambitious and are making a tangible impact on some aspect of our community. We’ve got social activists who are teenagers. And 37-year-old cardiologists. That’s a doctor who opens SHRSOHXSDQGÀ[HVWKHLUKHDUWV:H·YHJRW\HDU olds who own their own businesses or are VPs at some successful company. Meanwhile here I am 39, checking my bank account to see if I can afford to go out to eat at Olive Garden or not. But II’ll tell you what, it’s a great motivator. I look at the things these young people have achieved and the things they’re still hoping to accomplish and it gives me a little kick in the rear to get more involved in this community. We can all learn a little something from our fellow community members who are making things happen around them. Now we might not all be surgeons or CEOs or star students. But we might emulate some of their good qualities. We might be a little more disciplined. We might volunteer more. We might continue our education. Just because these people may be younger than we are, doesn’t mean there’s not a lot we can learn from them. What I’ve noticed from most of them is that they have looked for some need that they can address. Many of them have actively sought out some person or organization or area in the community that they can help. That’s something you and I can get up tomorrow and do. That doesn’t take any advanced degrees or a ELJEDQNDFFRXQWRUDWRQRIH[SHULHQFH$OOLWWDNHVLV a willingness to help. And it can start with one single person. If you don’t have the time or resources to help some with some major community project, you can still help one person. There are people all around us who need some form of help. And I can at least do that. So here’s a small list of some of the areas in our community that could use help - even if it’s just a little. Some of these people and places could use your time, talents, donations and any other form of support you can offer. Depending on your particular interests or talents, there are a variety of groups you can help:

• William S. Davies Homeless Shelter • Helping Pawz Inc. • 6H[XDO$VVDXOW&HQWHU • Harbor House Child Advocacy Center • Floyd County PAWS • Rome Symphony Orchestra • Friends of the Library • DIGS Inc. • Women of Worth • Boys and Girls Club • YMCA • Historic DeSoto Theatre Foundation


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LUXURY APARTMENTS

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Welcome Home. by Doug Walker

the common areas, the leasing office and a club room all feature motion-activated lighting. The club room will be open to tenants on a 24-7 basis and features three large flat-screen television sets, free Wi-Fi and coffee for residents and their guests Monday through Friday. Each of the apartments have a patio, some looking toward State Mutual Stadium and others looking toward the Oostanaula River (although what they first see is the large retaining pond that was constructed to contain run-off from the stadium site). The retaining pond is frequented by a variety of wildlife and even has some fish that attract the bald eagles from Berry College. Bedrooms in each apartment are carpeted and all the kitchens are equipped with stainless steel appliances and granite counter tops. Covered garage spaces, 47 of them, are available for rent. The Rome Braves have even agreed to provide nightly shuttle service over to the stadium for baseball fans. Rent range starts at $835 a month for a one-bedroom apartment and the large three-bedroom, two-bath apartments go for up to $1,500 a month. Williams also believes that RiverPoint will be a factor that attracts other development to the property in the area of the stadium. The Lumina Coffee shop, for example, will be going up soon directly across Braves Boulevard. “It was always the city and county’s hope that this would serve as a catalyst for that area and what we assured them of was that this would be a very high-quality, luxury development — something all of Rome could be proud of and I think we’ve been able to accomplish that,” he said.

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Rising adjacent to a bend of the Oostanaula River next the State Mutual Stadium, the RiverPoint Apartments are coming on line as spring turns into summer. The first 54-unit pod opened in April and the two remaining units are expected to open simultaneously within a couple of weeks. The apartment complex was a vision of Charlie Williams at Charles Williams REIC who saw the success that loft living was enjoying in the downtown district. “We began to see what we feel like was some pent up demand about three or four years ago,” Williams said. RiverPoint is an EarthCraft energy efficient complex that is a two-mile drive, bike ride or walk along the Heritage Riverways Trail from the heart of downtown Rome. “Turns out having a site close to the riverwalk trail and being next to the Braves stadium and the accessibility off the by-pass proved to be a great combination for us,” Williams added. Property manager Danielle Stitt said the location has been one of the best selling points for the apartments. “We have a lot of people coming over from Floyd Medical Center and Redmond Regional Medical Center to live here so they’re close to work,” Stitt said. She said leasing of the complex had been going better than anticipated with 83 units pre-leased heading into the month of April before the first pod opened. The EarthCraft energy efficient design has also been a big selling point. She said the environmentally-friendly design would be noticeable when Georgia Power bills come. The large common hallways of the complex, as well as most of

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Where to

Your Guide to unique and locally owned shops throughout our area. Reading a good book is like taking a journey. Emma Gulliford

20,000 New & Used books. Perfect graduate gifts

The versatility CAN’T BE BEAT!

Put one to work for you today

Joe Hill’s Lawnmower Shop, LLC 23 Alabama Street • Cave Spring

wntown Rome

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706.777.8877 Congratulations Nic Diaz

20 Under 40 Class of 2018

Yellow Door Antiques 219 N. 5th Avenue, Rome (706)237-7788

Congratulations Courtnay Williams

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20 Under 40

Tablemanors, Inc Interior Design

Class of 2018

221 N. 5th Avenue, Rome (706)266-6909 Community Development

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BEST

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SERVICES: • Lawn Maintenance • Irrigation • Tree Work & Removal • Swimming Pool Installment • Patios & Outcroppings • Walls & Sidewalks • Mulch & Decorative Rock


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Multitasking Mom

By Michelle Wilson

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arents try their hardest every day to be a good role model for their kids. And parents always want their children to get the best grades possible in school. Cassville’s Brandi Rhodes is no different in those respects. Except maybe in the way she goes about accomplishing them – achieving her own 4.0 grade point average in her college classes while her own children are going to school. “It is … so important to me to show my children that it is never too late to go back and do something you should have done a long time ago,” she said. “You can always move forward and achieve your dreams if you are willing to put in the time and energy.” Rhodes is studying both psychology and business administration at Georgia Highlands College, and the school selected her to be a Board of Regents Academic Day Representative in recognition of her scho-lastic achievement and perfect GPA. She and other Academic Day Representatives recently were honored during a Board of Regents meeting and luncheon at the University System Office. Rhodes will be recognized again during GHC’s Honors Night this spring. She is on track to complete her associate’s degree in business and psychology this summer and plans to move into GHC’s business bachelor’s degree in logistics and supply chain management. “Anyone who knows me will tell you that I am a bit of a perfectionist,” Rhodes said. “My husband and children give me a hard time about it all of the time. If I get a 96 on a test, I will become upset and they will actually laugh at me. It is just really important to me that I am a good role model for my kids and that I show them what is possible when you give it your best.” Rhodes has three children. Jordan Cuskick is 21 years old and attends GHC as well, majoring in music. Hailey Cusick is 16 and Zachery Cusick is 13. “They are all very proud of me,” Rhodes said. “I even had the pleasure of taking a couple of classes with my oldest son, Jordan. They are my biggest cheerleaders.”

She said her time at GHC has been memorable, even when in those moments when she doubted why she had gone back to school. “Many times I have looked around the classroom at all of the younger students and asked myself what I was doing,” Rhodes said. “I would become discouraged and tell myself that I was too old for this. It was during these times that being at a place like GHC was so important. When I started getting down on myself there was always a professor there willing to take the time to talk to me and remind me of how important my goal was and how far I had come.”

Rhodes had wanted to go to college since she was in her early 20s but didn’t think it was possible. She married her husband, Christopher, six years ago, and he was serving in the Army, completing two tours of duty in Iraq. The couple and Rhodes’ children moved from California back to Georgia after Christopher had received a medical discharge. It was actually her husband’s own enrollment in GHC that rekindled her interest in starting her own journey in college. “I have not regretted it once,” Rhodes said. “It

has been amazing.” As positive as it has been, Rhodes notes that it has been difficult as well. “It has been a very real struggle,” she said. “There have been many times when I wanted to just go back to being a wife and mom and forget the student part, but I could never just quit. My family has been very supportive of me and helps me as much as they can. I could not ask for a better support group. We have eaten a lot of takeout, though.” With only 24 short hours in a day, there is not time for Rhodes to do every little thing she wants to do. So she prioritizes. “My family definitely comes first, but college is right there at the top of my list,” Rhodes said. “I spend a lot of long nights studying after they go to bed. They help me out around the house so that I can get my schoolwork completed.” When she does have spare time available, Rhodes said her favorite activities include hanging out with my family, relaxing and trying to catch up on her favorite television shows. “Occasionally I even torture my husband with Lifetime movies, but he is a good sport,” she said. Her mom lives in Warner Robins and she comes to visit Rhodes and her family. They also like to spend time together going to Tennessee, Six Flags and White Water. With graduation right around the corner, there is a light at the end of the tunnel about finishing part of a very important chapter in her life. Rhodes said other parents who may want to try to return to college have the ability to do it, even if they don’t believe that they do. “It took me so many years to decide to finally go back to school and now I wonder why I waited so long,” Rhodes said. “The hardest part is getting started. Once you submit an application and get the ball rolling, it kind of takes on a life of its own. It is not always going to be easy, but it can be done. “I have not missed any special events with my children, because even if school conflicts with family, the professors are willing to work with you. The rewards are so great.”

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So many ways to save. Find tools and resources to help save money and energy. blackyellowmagentacyan

Georgia Power has energy-saving tips on everything from controlling airflow to adding weatherstripping. Plus you’ll have access to resources like Online Energy Checkup and My Power Usage to learn about your energy consumption. There are hundreds of simple ways for you to save energy – and saving energy means saving money. To learn more, visit georgiapower.com/save. ©2018 Georgia Power. All rights reserved.

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destination

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Morocco

photos by Lee and Christine Niedrach

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Lee and Christine at Bahia Palace in Marrakech at the beginning of their trip. The stunning mosaics and tilework were created long

Rome residents Lee and Christine Niedrach traveled to Morocco for two weeks in

share stunning images of their trip with the readers of Rome Life magazine.

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Above: While in Marrakech, a souk (marketplace) off the main square offered a and custom leather handbags as well as this beautiful light shop. Lee and Christine said the mix of Arabic and French cultures made Morocco a fantastic destination. Moroccans eat a lot of dates and tropical fruits. This vendor in Marrakech is selling spices and dried fruits used in their cooking.

the entire time we were there.â&#x20AC;?

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and “Game of Thrones.” The Niedrachs’ tour guide was an extra in several movies and was proud to tell the Rome couple all about it.

Above: Lee, Christine and two of their friends on the dunes of

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Berber people, an ethnic group indigenous to North Africa. Left: Christine amid a mountain of rugs at a shop in Marrakech. She said bartering is almost a sport there. You can expect to have a 10 to 30-minute long bargaining session over a single item. The couple bought two rugs to bring back to Rome.

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Above Moroccoâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Atlantic coast, the Niedrachs passed an orchard of argan trees and olive trees. Christine said local goats will climb the trees, eat the fruits and from their droppings, farmers will harvest the nuts to create valuable oil. The farmers let Lee pick up one of their goats for this photo.

Left: Dates, figs and other dried foods are

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The couple sampled fresh olives, dried apricots and dried figs among other local favorites. Shop keepers often give out free

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The Majorelle Garden is a two and half acre botanical garden and artistâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s

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Colorful shoes line the wall of a shop near the Niedrachsâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; hotel. The couple bought several pairs of the handmade shoes. Shoemakers above the shop made custom shoes out of rugs, leather and other materials. Christine said

like this could be seen beside much more modern ones including sports cars.

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The Niedrachs and their friends rode camels through the Sahara. The front camel led the group and the others and Christine got no instructions on riding the beasts but seemed to manage just fine. The desert offered an Chrisitne said the dunes were impressive and beautiful.

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Left: The Dadès Gorges are a series of rugged gorges

“And don’t be afraid to wander and get lost,” Christine said. “Some of the best parts of the trip were just walking around the seeing new and unexpected things.”

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South Chapel 3002 Maple Road â&#x20AC;˘ Rome, GA 30161 â&#x20AC;˘ (706) 234-5302

Vital ICE The Custom Branded In Case of Emergency App Henderson & Sons Funeral Home is Presenting a Life Saving Initiative to the area. Vital ICE provides a platform on which to list (and your dependents, if applicable ) vital medicinal information, such as blood type, allergies, medications, medical history, ICE contacts, and much more.This information will then be readily available to EMS and other First Responders when they need it most.

5302 Rome Life May 2018

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The Social Scene

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The first six pages of our Social Scene section are dedicated to one of Romeâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s most popular community events - the VIP party for the annual An Evening On the Runway fashion show. The event is a fundraiser for the Historic Desoto Theatre Foundation and is a great place to see and be seen.

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The Social Scene

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An Evening On the Runway

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The Social Scene An Evening On the Runway

Spring

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2018

mel&mimi 203 east eighth street • rome, ga 30161 • (706) 295-4203

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The Social Scene An Evening On the Runway

FEED YOUR FACE

TRY THE SKINTELLIGENT SYSTEM TODAY WITH A FREE SKIN ASSESSMENT. Skintelligent is a smart system with Probiotic Technology for healthy-looking, radiant skin.

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© 2018 Merle Norman Cosmetics, Inc.

4 Central Plaza Rome, Ga 30161 706-291-6444 Monday - Friday 10am - 6pm Saturday 10am - 4pm

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The Social Scene An Evening On the Runway

From gifts, furniture, and interior design services, we have it all! Shop our Spring Sale Today! Book your free interior design consultation! Call Crandel at (706)314-9524

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We’re so proud of your hard work and commitment to the Rome-Floyd Community.

We’re glad you’re a Darlington Tiger!

Congratulations, Tannika!

13 East 3rd Avenue 216 Broad St • Rome 30161 58 Rome Life May 2018 ROME_58 Social Scene 58

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MEE T T HE

COMMUNITY LEADERS WH O HELP GUIDE US E V ERY S T EP O F T HE WAY Our Board of Directors is dedicated to helping us continue to provide exceptional service for the Rome community. Speak with us today or visit ucbi.com to learn more. ROME 307 East Second Avenue | 706-234-5800 MT. BERRY 2760 Martha Berry Highway NE | 706-378-2225

From left to right: David Johnson, Northwest Georgia CEO, United Community Bank; Dr. Frank D. Stegall, Retired, Cardiologist Harbin Clinic; Tim Wallis, CEO, Wallis Printing; Dr. Charles B. May, Jr., Orthopedic Physician, Rome Orthopedic Center; Steven E. Kemp, Retired Banker; Delos H. Yancey, III, CEO, State Mutual Insurance; Kenna Stock, CEO, Harbin Clinic; J. Scott Tucker, North West GA President, United Community Bank; Charles S. Williams, Jr., CEO, CPM Charles Williams Real Estate Investment Corporation; Fred Taylor, Chairman, OTR International; E. Wright Ledbetter, COO, R.H. Ledbetter Properties.

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Member FDIC. © 2018 United Community Bank | ucbi.com

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CAVE SPRING 15 Cedartown Street SW | 706-777-3367


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The Social Scene

The lineup for this year’s Rome Celebrity Challenge includes Thad Mathis, Gorg Hubenthal, Sheriff Tim Burkhalter, Severo Avila, Kevin Cowling, Kristen Leezer, Matt Plant, Cindy Stansell, Shae Warner, Rusty Williams and their patient pro partners. Floyd County Police Department Assistant Chief Tom Ewing, Vice Chair of Floyd County Board of Commissioners Scotty Hancock and Floyd County E-911 Director John Blalock at the annual Floyd Against Drugs Murder Mystery on March 15. Scotty Hancock played Z-Brids member Rudy Del Fuego in the sockhop-themed dinner.

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Members of Rome Rotary at a Chamber Before Hours event. Pictured are Al Hodge, Randy Quick, Kay Chumbler, Elaine Abercrombie, Stacey Brown, Kelsey Mitchell, Thomas Kislat and Chris Carey.

Captain Dave Roberson of the Sheriff’s Department and Artagus Newell, Rome-Floyd Planning Director were just two of the professionals speaking to students at Rome High School’s Career Day on April 6.

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The Social Scene

Tom Beavers, left, accepts the gavel succeeding Hal Gosnell as commandant of the Puryear Detachment, Marine Corps League, during ceremonies at Pisgah Baptist Church in January. Everett Stewart, left, was elected Junior Vice Commandant. John Riley, right, Detachment chaplain, was named “Marine of the Year” for 2017.

Thomas Kislat and Miss Rome, Taylor Burrell in front of the Forum River Center where Taylor was having her official photo shoot as Miss Rome and where she was a special guest at the March Keep Rome/Floyd County Beautiful board meeting.

house plans? We have the mortgage partner for you. Heritage First Bank, YOUR Mortgage Partner.

H%$1.$OZD\V2SHQDWZZZKHULWDJH¿UVWEDQNFRP MAIN OFFICE: 501 Broad Street 706.378.5300 WEST ROME: 2211 Shorter Avenue 706.378.5305 ARMUCHEE: 2950 Martha Berry Blvd. 706.314.0560

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Karren Green, NMLS #537284 • 706-378-5311 Lori Hess, NMLS #257534 • 706-413-4159


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The Social Scene

City and county officials, as well as community members, gathered to commemorate this year’s Arbor Day.

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Cayniya Carter (center) won a new bicycle at the annual community Easter Egg Hunt held in March. She is flanked by her grandmother Pamela Ash and Bishop Nealon Guthrie.

Col. Seaborn Whatley and MSgt. Keith Thrash, Aerospace Science Instructors at Rome High School, helped JRROTC cadets celebrate leadership and honor the country’s heroes during the annual military ball held on March 10 at Berry College.

The cast of “Murder at the Skydale Sockhop,” an annual murder mystery dinner fundraiser which benefits Floyd Against Drugs. This years cast included Jeff Fletcher, Randy Quick, Scotty Hancock, Ryan Cox, Robert Smyth, Cathy Kerce, Garrett Barnes, Clem Slack, Mark Webb, Christa Jackson, Diane Warner, Rhonda Wallace, and Brad, Kimberly and Bo Bushnell.

Dozens of local professionals visited Rome High School on April 6 for Career Day. They spoke to students about possible careers in a variety of fields and stressed the importance of education.

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The Social Scene

Where to

Your Guide to unique and locally owned shops through out our area

Rachel Rogers (far right) gets a quick photo with the now famous Sister Jean at the NCAA basketball tournament in Atlanta. Prom • Quinceañera • Wedding • Tuxedos & Accessories Payment Plans Available

Theo Kislat and Gary Jones at the DeSoto Theatre on Broad Street after Rome Little Theatre’s production of “Seussical The Musical.”

337 BROAD STREET Rome, GA 30165 706.767.6070 www.ELEGANCIABOUTIQUE.com facebook@eleganciaboutiquerome

Below: Sheriff Tim Burkhalter and Deputy Jimmy Allred spent some time with a local boy scout troop in April.

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Claudia Floyd for

Mel & Mimi 203 E 8th St.

• Floral tunic by Trina Turk • Black skinny ankle pant by Karen Kane • Turquoise wrap bracelet by Enewton • Pink tassel earrings by Virtue • Blush suede ankle bootie by Nicole

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For prices and sizing call 706 295 4203

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STUDY SKILLS

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M AT H

S AT / AC T P R E P

WRITING

READING

HOMEWORK HELP

Make sure your kids have some

Summer Fun!

With Summer Learning at Sylvan Ah, summer break: Sunshine, vacation plans and R&R. But, did you know, your child can lose up to 2-1/2 months of learning over the summer? Sylvan’s got you covered. With our summer sessions, your child can beat summer learning loss, build skills, and get off to a great start in the fall. Summer sessions are filling up fast. Call today!

Angela Baron 2809 Martha Berry Hwy NW Rome, Ga 30165

SYLVAN STUDENTS SEE UP TO THREE TIMES MORE GROWTH *Visit SylvanResearchInstitute.com for complete Sylvan field research results.

$25 off any summer camp Mention promocode SUM25 and recieve $25 OFF any summer STEM or academic camp. Cannot be combined with other offers. Offer valid at participating locations only (Rome and Cartersville) Expires 07/27/18

rome.ga@sylvanlearning.com

Heritage Arts Day Camp June 18-20

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$150 for two workshops Classes offered: Crochet, Leather Craft, Wire Craft, and Calligraphy

ages 10 to adult For more information or to register www.ahhas.org

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CREATING FL AVORS TO

Summer Art Camp Is Back! Register early to reserve your spot! Three one week sessions to choose from.

June 4-8

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Morning Session from 9-11 a.m. for 6-8 year olds

Experience: clay, painting, printmaking, weaving, jewelry and more with certified art teachers. Cost includes all materials and a snack. 150$

(706) 234 2244 • www.theseasonevents.com

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Afternoon Session from 12-2 for 9-12 year olds


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Guest Columnist

ENTREPRENEURSHIP AND YOUR FUTURE

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Dr. Paula Englis

Imagine splitting your time between taking college classes and starting a business. Sounds crazy but it can be done. At Berry College, our entrepreneurship program helps students to follow their passion to start and grow a business they love! Jeff Jahn did just that. He started a business in 2005 as a sophomore. While he didnâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t make DQ\PRQH\ZLWKKLVĂ&#x20AC;UVW´VDOHÂľKHWDXJKWKLPVHOIWR code, developed a website for Sound Sensations and walked into their Marietta location to see if they would barter with him â&#x20AC;&#x201D; a new website for a new video/ speaker system for his SUV. He was so nervous that his faced turned red and blotchy â&#x20AC;&#x201D; they thought he had eaten something weird at lunch and was having an allergy attack. But they loved his work, so Jeff got his sound system and more than 10 years later, they are still clients. After this course, Jeff started applying what he was OHDUQLQJLQFODVVLQWRSURMHFWVIRUKLVĂ&#x20AC;UPÂłPDUNHWLQJ plan (check), accounting system (check). By the time his last semester rolled around in 2007, Jeff had a slate RIFOLHQWVKLVĂ&#x20AC;UVWIXOOWLPHHPSOR\HHDQGZDVMXJJOLQJ 18 hours to graduate. His stepped out of the classroom into a fulltime business, DynamiX Web Design that is still going strong. Theyâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;ve won more than 900+ national and international awards for their work, the Cobb County Small Business of the Year in 2016, and Jeff won Berryâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Entrepreneurial Spirit Award in 2015 (the youngest person to do so). Our program has grown since Jeff started his business. We now have an Entrepreneurship Center that can help students to develop their ideas into real businesses by providing access to space, rapid prototyping through the HackBerry lab and Creative Technologies program and faculty and alumni expertise. An upcoming minor in entrepreneurship is intended to help students from across the curriculum start businesses they love and to help all of our students develop an entrepreneurial mindset. Harmony Petty is a freshman Early Education major and planning to be an entrepreneurship minor. Her business Harmonyâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Crafty Creations is in residence in our incubator. Harmony wants to teach pre-school because she has a strong love for working with children. She knows that teachers arenâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t paid a lot. So, she started a business she loves to supplement her salary after she graduates. Harmony hand makes and sells all kinds of t-shirts, baby gifts, sweatshirts with cute phrases and classy looks. Her Berry College WKHPHG´:HDOO5RZÂľDQG´6KDUSHQWKH$[HÂľVKLUWV

and sweatshirt sold out on Mountain Day (Berryâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s annual homecoming event in October) with $1700 in sales. Many of KHUSURGXFWVDUHFXVWRPL]HGIRUELUWKGD\VRURWKHUVSHFLĂ&#x20AC;F events â&#x20AC;&#x201D; she loves working directly with clients to make KHUSURGXFWVĂ&#x20AC;WWKHLUQHHGV0RVWRIKHUVDOHVFRPHIURP Facebook but she also has a stall at the Pintage Antique Market, Downtown in Calhoun. Like Jeff, Harmony is a hard worker and is also very FUHDWLYH+DUPRQ\PDGHPRUHWKDQKHUĂ&#x20AC;UVW semester and is well on her way to another $10,000 by the end of April. Sheâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s using the earnings from her business to help pay for her education at Berry. Jeff and many other of our alumni entrepreneurs continue to come back to Berry and help budding entrepreneurs like Harmony so they can start strong like they did. If you are interested in volunteering and working with our student entrepreneurs, please send me an email penglis@ berry.edu.

Romeâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Downtown Boutique Hotel featuring historic charm and modern amenities

100 W. 2nd Avenue | Rome, GA 30161

For booking information and to check availability for specific dates call 706.378.4837

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At Riverside You’ll Feel The Difference

his family and his automotive expertise to Rome, GA in 1974. Here he began another successful Chevrolet franchise. The original Riverside Chevrolet was located on the Oostanaula River where the Olive Garden Restaurant is located on Turner-Mccall Blvd. In 1997 The Oldsmobile-Cadillac franchises were acquired and all united in the present location at 100 Hwy 411 E in Rome, GA. Then the Toyota dealership was added at 131 Hwy. 411 SE. and Hyundai USA, giving us Chevrolet-Cadillac-Hyundai-Toyota. Thank you for allowing us to serve the Rome and surrounding area for the last 43 years. The dealerships are now in their third generation of ownership as “Andy Welborn continues the family legacy of customer service above all with a modern day approach to automobile sales, that provides easy upfront pricing, tremendous selection, and value to our customers. Please come by to allow us to show you our no hassle, no haggle way of doing business.

RIVERSIDE CHEVROLET - CADILLAC 100 Highway 411 East Rome, Ga. 30161 706-295-9090 • RIVERSIDE HYUNDAI 100 Highway 411 East Rome, Ga. 30161 706-378-2259 RIVERSIDE TOYOTA 131 Hwy. 411 SE Rome, Ga. 30161 706-291-2886 • www.riversideautogroup.com

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The moment you get behind the wheel of a new vehicle from Riverside Auto Group in Rome, you’ll know why so many customers keep returning to satisfy their automotive needs. Not only are you assuered of a quality products, but quality service both before and after the sale. Our professionals strive to make sure they have the pulse of the latest trends. They treat each individual customer with paramount concern. We know that you have high expectations, and as a car dealer we enjoy the challenge of meeting and exceeding those standards each and every time. Allow us to demonstrate our commitment to excellence! Our dealership was founded by Wesley Keys Welborn on May of 1938 located in Anderson, South Carolina. Established as a General Motors dealer with Oldsmobile, Cadillac, and Willys-Overland Motors. In 1941 the Dodge and Plymouth franchises were added. Then in 1956 the Chevrolet franchise was acquired. The successful Chevrolet franchise was passed down to John M. Welborn in 1968. John later sold his automotive franchise and moved


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Itâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s time to

Spring Into Health This spring, Harbin Clinic challenges you to start fresh and prioritize preventive health measures. For proactive health management, men and women of all ages should see their primary care physician yearly for these routine evaluations:

Blood Pressure

Cholesterol and triglycerides

Blood sugar/glucose

Healthy weight ranges

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Visit harbinclinic.com/screenings to see which screenings may apply to you. Schedule an appointment with a primary care physician to spring-clean your health today!

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Profile for Rome News-Tribune

Rome Life Magazine May 2018  

Rome Life Magazine May 2018  

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