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November 2017 VOLUME IV, ISSUE IV A publication of the LaGrange-Troup County Chamber of Commerce 111 Bull St./P.O. Box 636 LaGrange, GA 30241 (706) 884-8671 EXECUTIVE COMMITTEE John Asbell, Chair – Georgia Power Eric Blackman, Past Chair – Emory at LaGrange Casey Smith, Chair-Elect – Calumet Bank Marlene Rhodes, Secretary/Treasurer – Renasant Bank Page Estes, President – Chamber of Commerce Chunk Newman, Vice Chair for Public Policy Batson-Cook Company Phillip Alexander, Vice Chair for Leadership Development – Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity Dale Jackson, Vice Chair for Business & Entrepreneurial Development – Jackson Heating & Air Jason Ransbottom, Vice Chair for Talent & Workforce Development – Powertech America Loraine Allen, Vice Chair for Talent & Workforce Development – West Georgia Society for Human Resource Managers JJ Kuerzi, Vice Chair for Marketing & Tourism Troup County Parks & Recreation Patricia Rogers, Vice Chair for Marketing & Tourism WellStar West Georgia Medical Center Richard Ennis, Vice Chair for Membership Development New York Life George Bailey, Vice Chair for Hogansville Business Council – City of Hogansville Meghan Duke, Vice Chair for West Point Business Council – City of West Point

DESIGN Jayme Ogles


CONTENTS 4 | A Letter from the President

26 | Spotlight on Hogansville

Hummingbirds Come Home to Nest

6 | Cover Story

Dr. Ferguson Goes to Washington

28 | Healthcare

Good Health is All in the Family

12 | Mystery Traveler

There's a New Brew in Town

30 | Movers, Shakers, Risk-Takers

14 | Tax Tips

32 | Chamber Events

Year-End Giving & Tax Deductions

16 | Community Care

38 | Spotlight on West Point

Virginia Cook Activity Center There's Power in Unity for Disaster Restored to Past Glory Stricken Areas 40 | Calendar Things to See and Do 19 | Business Spotlight Aspinwall Chiropractic Clinic 42 | Non-Profit Spotlight Troup Cares for Those in Need 20| Holidays Let There Be Peace on Earth 2017 Christmas Parade 46 | HYPE Helping Young Professionals Engage 24 | Small Business Building Cyberstrength into Your Business

EDITOR Shelley Strickland This publication is produced by the LaGrange-Troup County Chamber of Commerce. Reproduction in whole or part of this publication without express written permission is prohibited. All claims, materials and photos furnished or used are, to the publisher's knowledge, true and correct. Publication of any article or advertisement is not an endorsement by the LaGrange-Troup County Chamber of Commerce.

Troup Trends is published quarterly by the LaGrangeTroup County Chamber of Commerce. Please send news items, suggestions, advertising requests and comments to:

Dave Marler P.O. Box 636 • LaGrange, GA 30241

November 2017

ON THE COVER Cover Photo by BackLight






Dear Friends,

Imagine a cute little toddler teetering up to your front porch dressed as a turkey with a white beard and elf shoes. He holds up his jack-o-lantern bucket and exclaims, "Happy Thankxmas!" Isn't that what the holiday season has become–a strange combination of goblins and pilgrim hats surrounded by glittering lights and garland? Thanksgiving has all but been forgotten except for my friends on social media who are posting what they are grateful for each day. Why is it that the majority of us only pause to give thanks for the bountiful life that we have the 55 days between Halloween and Christmas or the seven days between Palm Sunday and Easter? Allow me to use a biblical analogy. In Luke 17:11-19, we are told the story of the lepers. They were living in a kind of darkness–the darkness of the skin disease called leprosy. These individuals would never have been together if not for the disease. They became a group. A community. They understood each other. They were required to live outside the village and towns–away from their family and friends. If anyone came near them, the lepers were required to cry out: "Unclean; I am unclean!" As terrible as that must have been, it brought them together. Even a Samaritan–the foreigner–with nine Jews. There is something about community with others; even lepers need community. They were doing what no one else in society would do for them: helping each other survive–physically, mentally, emotionally and spiritually. In the story, Jesus healed all ten. Maybe Jesus healed them to carry the message of peace and unity back to all the villages. Maybe they had all decided that if they ever recovered from the disease, they would change the world. They found that despite being Samaritan and Jewish, they had overcome their hatred and prejudices. But nine of them went to priests and kept right on going. One was a businessman who returned to the business. Another a farmer that went back to the farm. One had been a teacher who went back to the classroom. They scattered. No humanity emerged. They had not learned anything from their suffering. And that great community was

not so great after all. In fact, it was only skin deep–once the skin disease went away, so did the community. That is, all but one. The Samaritan. He returned with gusto to proclaim his thanksgiving that such healing had occurred. For the Samaritan, "getting back to normal" was not the goal. He did not give up on starting a new kind of humanity. Albert Schweitzer insists that a life of gratitude is the secret of life. His book, Reverence for Life, includes a sermon from November 20, 1904 that states, "When you feel weak, downcast and sad, start giving thanks. Force yourself to do it. If your heart angrily objects and asks: what's the good? Don't let it rest. Make it search then and there for something, anything to be grateful for. Once you have the first thing, other things will follow, and finally you will find yourself giving endless thanks." I admit that it is hard to make sense of the world right now. The tragic events in Las Vegas, New York and, most recently, in a tiny Texas town have made me question whether good can truly conquer evil in this world. And then I'm reminded of the Samaritan. We have much to be thankful for in our community. As you gather around your turkey and decorate your Christmas tree, I hope you will join me in not focusing on what is on the table or under the tree. Rather, let's give thanks for those who are gathered with us–our family and our friends. Wishing you and yours much peace, happiness and laughter this holiday season.

Warm regards,

Page Estes, President LaGrange-Troup County Chamber of Commerce

Special thanks to our top level 2017 corporate sponsors. CHAIRMAN LEVEL


November 2017







November 2017




n the 1939 movie Mr. Smith Goes to Washington, Jimmy Stewart plays a naïve newcomer who has been appointed to serve as a United States Senator. As to be expected Stewart’s character, Jefferson Smith, learns that governing is not quite as easy as it may seem.

honor to do this.”

While Congressman Drew Ferguson earned experience in governing as Mayor of West Point, he too has found Washington a bit overwhelming following his swearingin ceremony on a cold day in January as the latest representative of Georgia’s third district. “When I came to Washington, I felt like I had stepped onto a train going 80 mph,” recalls Ferguson.

After only a year, it’s hard for Ferguson to say if he’s got higher political aspirations.

Serving in Congress has been a little bit like going back to school. “This reminds me so much of dental school. I’m always reading, always studying,” he said. Despite his best efforts, he is still subject to those “freshman” moments any newcomer might expect. Ferguson’s just happened to be in the halls of the Capitol. “I am still trying to learn how to navigate the tunnel system around the Capitol,” he said. ‘The first month, I felt like a rat in a maze, and I got lost a lot. I would call my office and tell my staff that I was lost again, and they would tell me to take a picture of where I was and send it to them and they would come find me.” Looking back at his first year in Washington, Ferguson, is still as excited about the responsibility the voters have given him.

Ferguson, who was originally elected West Point mayor in 2008, was elected to Congress in November 2016 after a primary fight with state Sen. Mike Crane and a general election race against Angela Pendley.

“I’m still learning this job,” he said. “Right now I’m committed to serving the Third District in Congress.” Ferguson says being mayor was a great part of his life, and looking at things from the perspective of a small town mayor and business owner is what guides him in Washington. “I still keep in regular contact with local leaders, businesses and the voters. That’s where the ideas and the feedback need to come from,” he said. In fact, LaGrange-Troup County Chamber President Page Estes says that Ferguson is the most visible Congressman she’s ever seen in the district. “When Drew is back home, he is constantly meeting with constituents in every corner of the district,” Estes said. Ferguson’s swearing in as mayor came just two years after Kia Motors announced its plans to build a factory in the city. As mayor, Ferguson was part of the planning for the plant’s construction, suppliers’ locating to West Point and other growth and development in the city. The city has since seen a revitalized downtown and the relocation of Point University, formerly Atlanta Christian College, to the city.

“It’s been a great first year.” he said. “It truly is an

Ferguson chats with Wild Leap founders at ribbon cutting




(l-r) West Point Mayor Steve Tramell and Hogansville Mayor Bill Stankiewicz with Rep. Ferguson.

After some growing pains, Ferguson has found his way and is working with other Congressmen on legislation. He recently was part of a meeting with President Donald Trump to discuss an issue he says is critical for his district’s success - tax reform. “I was honored to be asked to participate in (the) meeting with the President,” he said. “We covered a number of important topics, but chief among them was tax reform. The people of the Third District sent me to Washington because I committed to reform our tax code and make America the most competitive place in the world to do business. I was glad to be a part of (the) conversation and offer the conservative voice on this issue. While I agree with the President’s focus on creating jobs and lowering taxes on the


November 2017

middle class, I will continue to fight to lower taxes for every American. The first step is to pass the conservative budget approved by my colleagues and me in the Committee on the Budget.” In a meeting with representatives from the chamber in September, Ferguson said growing the economy is his core mission and tax reform is critical for success here. “My core mission is to enable us to grow the economy at an exponential rate, doing so will help to take care of entitlements, reduce the national debt and provide more opportunity for the small businesses and American families,” he said. “We have a vibrant economy, plenty of jobs and the



national economy is getting stronger, so tax reform is the best thing we can do to help this trend continue. We’ve had 30 years of bad tax laws, and it’s time to fix that. I would like to see corporate tax rates in the low 20’s.” Ferguson said a big lesson he’s learned is that members of Congress and the Senate - and even the president and vice president - are not always how they’re portrayed. “(Trump is) very different than portrayed in the press,” he said. “He’s a pragmatic problem solver who truly cares about America. (Vice President) Mike Pence is the nicest person I’ve ever met.  He has a genuine love and commitment to serve America.” Ferguson says it’s dealing with the different regions of the country that make up the bigger challenges in trying to get laws passed. “People in the Northeast are different compared to the Midwest, compared to the Heartland or the Northwest,” he said. “It makes it more complex when you try and put policy together.” Ferguson says the best thing residents of the district can do to help him is keep in touch with his office.

Ferguson shares comments during Chamber dinner in Washington, D.C.

Official White House Photo by D. Myles Cullen

“Provide feedback – good and bad – to our staff on the ground and here in Washington,” he said. “Your communication is essential to our work.” Ferguson also said that since Troup County is seeing a resurgence as a manufacturing community, it’s important for businesses to promote manufacturing jobs as a career, particularly to graduating students. “From a workforce and education perspective, continue working to encourage industry for investment in work-based learning and apprenticeships,” he said. “We have to change the perception of manufacturing in the minds of students as well as their parents. Your business and community leaders must be engaged in working to change these perceptions and sharing the opportunity that exists in today’s 21st century global workplace.” TT

Ferguson on Air Force 2




(l-r) CJ Carter, Kimble Carter and William Pendergraph with Rep. Ferguson

What Congressman Ferguson says on other important topics to the Third District: WEST POINT LAKE “I believe there is great untapped potential in leveraging federal assets that sit idle. The assets cost the taxpayer money with no revenue being produced. One example of change would be to provide long-term lease of corps land around WPL to developers for housing and other amenities. Doing so will provide incremental revenues back to the federal government and provide great opportunities for the undeveloped areas of the lake.”

TRANSPORTATION “The focus is lagging due to efforts to reauthorize FAA. There currently is no pot of money to allocate for projects, funds must come from tax reform, a growing economy and repatriation of more than $2 trillion from overseas corporate profits. I hope for a bill to come in a November time frame and focus on two areas, maintenance and new construction.”

NAFTA “The economy has changed dramatically since NAFTA was enacted. I expect there will be some tweaks to the agreement but do not expect repeal of accord.”

BROADBAND “The federal government should simply get out of the way. We can help by reducing regulation and find ways to motivate public/private partnerships to build out infrastructure – also need to explore latest access options, i.e. total wireless access to replace fiber.”

SENATE “House members say the Senate is where good things go to die.”

HOUSE “There is vibrant, robust discussion within the House between both parties, especially among freshman members from both sides of the aisle. Don’t believe everything you see reported on the news. There is a spirit of cooperation and bipartisanship within the rank and file of the House of Representatives.” 10

November 2017



he LaGrange-Troup County Chamber has always maintained a close relationship with our representatives in Congress to better advocate on behalf of our business community. As a way to stay in touch with our senators and representatives, the Chamber periodically sponsors a Washington, D.C. Fly-In for its members. This year, the Chamber took a delegation of 32 to the nation’s capital in September and spent three days meeting with elected officials, touring historical sites and participating in the fast pace of life in Washington. Kimble Carter of Kimble’s Food by Design, has seen his business grow by leaps and bounds in recent years, so small business-friendly legislation is important to him and the trip allowed him to make important connections. “Being born and raised in a small town, it is intriguing to see firsthand just how complex our government really is and it allows you to appreciate the job our elected officials do. The ability for me to network with fellow citizens, business owners, and local officials was invaluable,” Carter said. The Troup County delegation enjoyed dinner at the historic Old Ebbitt Grill with Congressman Drew Ferguson and his chief of staff, then had an early morning meeting at the congressman’s office in the Longworth House Office Building the next day. Congressman Ferguson talked about what it has been like to work with President Trump on tax reform and how different the former West Point mayor’s life is now. The congressman’s staffers provided the group a guided tour through the Capital Building. The group met with Senator Johnny Isakson in his office in the Russell Senate Office Building and met up with Harrison Lawson, a junior at LaGrange High, who is currently serving as a page in Sen. Isakson’s office.



The Chamber delegation pauses during a tour of the U.S. Capitol

A luncheon with members of the Georgia Chamber and the U.S. Chamber provided an opportunity to hear about how the media often skews the slant of their news stories to make them more sensational. Kia Motors has opened a new office in D.C. in the AT&T Forum and hosted the local Chamber delegation for a cocktail reception one afternoon. A highlight of the trip was a tour of the White House. The selfguided tour allowed the group to see the first floor, including the East Room where President John Adams and his wife Abigail hung their wash to dry and where President Lincoln's body lay in state following his assassination. Well-known portraits of Presidents and First Ladies were strategically placed for visitors to enjoy. The magnificent entrance hall, where Princess Diana danced with John Travolta, is where the official portrait of President John F. Kennedy is hung.

(l-r) Dr. Danny Guy, Dr. Ira Horowitz and Eric Blackman from Emory Healthcare

As plans are in the works for the 2018 Fly-In, Mable Sharp of Mable Sharp State Farm Insurance highly recommends the experience to all Chamber members. “This trip allowed me to get to better know people I did not know previously. And it was very impressive to hear Congressman Ferguson talk about his plans for our area. Seeing the sights and experiencing Washington in this way, it was the best trip I’ve ever been on,” Sharp said. TT






ven before you sipped the beer, you could taste the anticipation.

From all directions, throngs of casually dressed people – old, young and in between – streamed toward a refurbished red brick building on a sun-splashed Saturday afternoon. Clutching tickets and chatting amiably, they queued up to take their first wild look at Wild Leap, LaGrange’s first craft brewery. Joining the line, I found myself thinking not of ales, but of “Once upon a time.” Once upon a time, in the 1940s, people bought new Chevys here. Once upon a time, for a long time, people got their tires changed here. Once upon a time, during the building’s long decline, the Junior Service League held Attic Sales here. Now, the landmark Westbrook building on the south end of LaGrange’s Main Street has been impressively repurposed as a brewery. This was a grand opening, but it felt like a fairytale. As surely as the fairy godmother turned Cinderella into a princess, the bold young founders of Wild Leap Brew Co.

12 12

August 2017 November 2017

have transformed a decrepit but architecturally appealing old building into a handsome prince of a place. My mystery traveler assignment was to see if the shoe fit. It was hard to decide what to do first. A really good band was playing on a newly built outdoor stage on a spacious brick plaza that can be rented for events and private parties. Young couples in collegiate T’s were playing cornhole. Adventurous kids were scaling a climbing wall. Guides were showing off the gleaming brewhouse. Folks were sipping and socializing on an



inviting patio. Others watched football and sampled Wild Leap’s “easy-drinking” Chance IPA and Sunvale Raspberry Wheat at stylish modern tables inside the packed tasting room. With the obvious exception of the climbing wall, I wanted to try it all. My companion was not so conflicted. We made a beeline for the beer line. Awaiting our taste of Wild Leap’s Local Gold blonde ale, we got our first glimpse of the future city park planned behind the Wild Leap site. Now mostly red dirt centered by a pond, the spacious spot will include a skate park, dog park and playground, all connected by a section of the Thread, LaGrange’s popular new walking trail. “They are doing this right,” declared a fellow observer. “It’s gonna be awesome when they get the park open.” “If it’s as good as the beer, it will be great,” his date replied. I raised my glass to that. Planners had stressed the grand opening would be a family affair, and it was. Young adults – the desired demographic – were a strong majority, but there were kids and codgers, too. A gentleman on a crutch hobbled in and took a seat beside a young couple playing with their baby. Near the stage, several little girls and a couple of big ones danced around a young man in a wheelchair. “I’m so glad we don’t have to go out of town for this,” I overheard more than one guest saying. We grabbed some tasty barbecue fries from a local food vendor and chewed and sipped for a pleasant half hour, soaking up the lively atmosphere before heading inside to check out the first-class restrooms and take our turn on the tour. Our guide described the shiny new equipment, the brewmaster’s key role, the ambitious plans for cans and expanded beer offerings. Briefly, he told the Wild Leap story: Two young guys leave successful careers, taking a “wild leap” to follow their passion of creating bettertasting craft beer. Words stenciled on an exposed steel beam atop the patio underscore their dream: “If you don’t do wild things while

you’re young, you’ll have nothing to smile about when you’re old.” About 1,100 people found things to smile about at Wild Leap’s grand opening. Most, like me, seemed to think the Wild Leap “shoe” will fit LaGrange. TT

MEET MISTY REE My tourist gene runs deep. I love to go, to see, to do. I am always ready to eat, shop, play, listen, view, wander or try something new. I want you to go along with me, at least in spirit. We’ll visit some familiar places and others off the beaten path, from one end of beautiful Troup County to the other. To make our journeys more interesting, I am going incognito. You won’t see me coming. You won’t know where I am going next. If you have a suggestion of a place I ought to visit, just drop a line to my buddy Dave Marler, VP of Marketing and Tourism at the Chamber. ( Tell him you have a message for Troup’s Mystery Traveler, or use my nickname: Misty Ree.





Year-End Giving & Tax Deductions By Wesley E. Long, III, CPA Senior Accountant – Gay & Joseph, CPA, PC


s we get closer to the holiday season and end of the year, we often think about making those last-minute charitable contributions to our favorite nonprofit organizations. While our gifts are typically our way of supporting those organizations doing good work in our community, there can also be tax benefits to making those charitable contributions. If you itemize deductions, you can deduct contributions to a 501(c)(3) organization for which you receive no benefit in return, subject to certain limits. If your donation is $250 or more, be sure that you receive the donation acknowledgement letter from the nonprofit organization before you file your return. Without that letter, you cannot claim the charitable deduction on your tax return. If the donation is less than $250, all you need is some record to substantiate that you made the donation, whether it is an acknowledgment letter, cancelled check, credit card statement or other record. If you choose to make a noncash charitable contribution to a 501(c)(3) organization, be sure to get a receipt from the nonprofit when you make the donation. It will be up to you to list the items donated and to assign a value to the donations. For other methods to save on taxes, consider your retirement plan. If your employer offers a pre-tax retirement plan, such as a 401(k), or if you have a personal retirement account, such as an IRA, you should review your contributions to your retirement so far this year. If you have not already contributed the maximum, you may be able to contribute more to your retirement plan and reduce your taxable income. The last couple of months of the year are a great time to start preparing for your tax return. Everyone’s tax situation is different, so be sure to talk to your tax preparer about any questions that you may have to help avoid any surprises next April 15th. TT


November 2017


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There’s Power in Unity for Disaster Stricken Areas still likely to get involved. “Our customers come first, but we are part of the Southern Network of utilities,” Asbell said. That includes Alabama Power, Mississippi Power, and Gulf Power. Georgia Power crews went to help after Hurricane Katrina in 2005; all power that could be restored was back on within 10 days. More recently, Southern Company, which owns Georgia Power and its subsidiaries, is taking part in the effort to restore power to Puerto Rico and sent 100 personnel northeast to help after the first nor’easter of the season. In the case of Diverse Power, Ken Pope, residential marketing services coordinator, said it was one of the worst statewide outage Georgia had seen, although outages in the local service area weren’t as bad as expected.


Diverse also planned ahead, ordering extra supplies and getting trucks ready. They stocked everything from extra power poles to toilet paper, to gas for generators. eteorologists and layman weather watchers alike agree Troup County escaped the worst when Hurricane Irma passed directly over the area on September 11.

From utility companies to the American Red Cross, electric line workers and volunteers deployed to locations in need in the days after the storm – like they always do when a disaster strikes. Local utility companies like Diverse Power and Georgia Power have mutual aid agreements to help out other utility providers when a storm knocks out power. Both companies dispatched crews to other parts of the state after Irma. Georgia Power restored electricity to over 990,000 customers within six days after Irma hit, said John Asbell, local manager for the company, and Chamber Board Chair. This required the support of over 8,000 personnel. “We have a storm emergency restoration plan, and we monitor the weather,” he said. Crews and staff were able to predict where the most damage was likely to occur and put resources in the best position to respond before the storm hit.


“We spent about two and half days in Troup County,” he said. “Overall, we had 12,000 to 15,000 outages, which is a third of our system.” Diverse is an electric membership cooperative, one of 41 in Georgia. “We’re always willing to send crews to other EMCs,” Pope said. “We almost always say yes, once our power is back on, and it’s reciprocated.” Local linemen went to Florida and other parts of Georgia after the storm. The deployments are coordinated by the state EMC, since all 41 trying to do it on their own would be chaotic. Pope said Diverse prepares for a hurricane like it would an ice storm or other severe weather. Electric crews are deployed after those events just like a hurricane. “With snow and ice you get less warning, but it can be more widespread,” he said. “Tornadoes sneak up on you. They can do damage, but it’s localized.”

Unlike other storms, because of the projected path, Georgia Power crews stayed in Georgia.

While the electric companies work on getting the power back on, the Red Cross helps people get their lives back together.

“Georgia Power monitored the path of Hurricane Irma for more than a week prior to the storm entering Georgia,” Asbell said. "The hurricane brought severe weather, including high winds, heavy rain and flooding, to every corner of the state. All of Georgia Power's resources were held in the state prior to the storm and remained in Georgia to lead the company's restoration effort. Restoration teams were widely distributed as widespread damage was expected and faced challenging conditions for days following Hurricane Irma including downed trees, blocked roads and bridges that had to be inspected by the state after area flooding.”

The Red Cross deploys volunteers two weeks at a time after storms, to man emergency response vehicles, shelter people and handle technology, said Connie Hensler, executive director of the Central Midwest Georgia Red Cross, which includes Troup County.

When the storm hits outside the area, however, Georgia Power is

“They learn a lot from those experiences and can bring that back

November 2017

Hensler said five shelters were opened in Georgia for Irma, after what already had proved to be a busy hurricane season. A large number of volunteers went to Florida and Savannah after Irma and to Texas after Harvey. Several volunteers went to California to help after the wildfires.



There are a few things customers can do to lessen the impact of predicted power outages after a storm, even beyond keeping trees maintained. • Do a visual inspection of electrical wires around your property, but DON’T TOUCH ANYTHING. Make sure wires aren’t hanging low and are well-connected. If not, call your power company. • Be familiar with where your meter and breaker box are and know how to reset the breaker box if needed. • Have a plan for what to do if the power goes out. Many power companies, including Georgia Power, have an “outage monitor” that can give you an estimate of when power might be restored. The monitor can be accessed via a mobile phone or other device. • Never touch a downed power line, EVER. Remember in the case of flooding that power can travel in water. “If electricity crosses your heart, it can stop it,” notes John Asbell. You can learn more about storm preparedness and real-time outage information at Georgia Power’s “Storm Center” website at Diverse Power storm and outage information is available at Information on the Central Midwest Georgia chapter of the American Red Cross is at georgia/locations/central-midwest

here,” Hensler said. Stacy Hummer is one of the local Red Cross’s disaster responders and a leadership volunteer. That means she’s trained to fill almost any role during a disaster response. “The Red Cross is 98 percent volunteer,” she said. “You might be given a job that fits your skills and background, or you might be asked to fill in the gap.” Hummer went to Macon to open one of the shelters after Irma, but soon came back to LaGrange after seeing the storm was to track directly over this area. An Air Force veteran, Hummer was called to volunteer with the Red Cross after being stationed in North Dakota in 1997 when the Red River flooded. The town was evacuated to her Air Force base, and the Red Cross arrived to help. “We worked alongside them,” she said. Hummer appreciated how the Red Cross is run a little bit like a military organization. In 2010 when she was living in Pennsylvania, the area faced flood after flood. Hummer finally completed her full Red Cross certification. “Any time there’s a need, I want to do this,” she said.



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ASPINWALL CHIROPRACTIC CLINIC 302 South Greenwood Street La Grange, GA 30240 (706) 884-8360 HOW WE STARTED In October, Aspinwall Chiropractic Clinic celebrated its 65th year in business. The clinic was started by Dr. A.J. Aspinwall, who was later joined by his sons Jim and Keith. “My father literally worked here until the day he died, with my mom being the last person he treated,” says Dr. Jim Aspinwall. “His dedication to helping people in this community is what made me decide to join the family business. My dad’s passion for chiropractic care began when he was in the Navy and went to a chiropractor for migraines that he’d had since he was a kid. After that he never had migraines again.” WHAT WE DO According to The Association of Chiropractic Colleges, "Chiropractic is a health care discipline which emphasizes the inherent recuperative power of the body to heal itself without the use of drugs and surgery. The practice of chiropractic focuses on the relationship between structure (primarily the spine) and function (as coordinated by the nervous system) and how that relationship affects the preservation and restoration of health."

Because chiropractic treatments are primarily applied to the spinal region, many people incorrectly assume that chiropractors treat only back and neck ailments. While we do quickly and effectively eliminate back and neck pain,

The staff at Aspinwall Chiropractic Clinic

it's not the only goal. The objective is to restore and optimize human health. “One of the most common issues we treat now is headaches, as well as back pain and sciatica,” explains Aspinwall. “We also treat sports injuries, degenerative issues and herniated discs. By improving our patients’ mechanical and structural balance, chiropractic treatment can help prevent surgeries and the use of pain medications.” In addition to instrument-assisted techniques, Aspinwall Clinic uses soft tissue techniques such as massage, dietary and nutritional counseling, physical therapies, and lifestyle

modification programs. WHO WE ARE The clinic employs eight staff members, along with Dr. Satoko Kanai, Dr. Dennis Hawk, and physical therapist Kevin Bearwalde. After 31 years with the practice, Dr. Keith Aspinwall retired in August due to health issues.

“I’ve been in business a long time and have never had it so good,” says Dr. Jim Aspinwall. “I’m so proud of our staff. They are completely service-oriented and will do whatever it takes to keep our patients happy.” TT

Dr. Jim Aspinwall

Members chosen to be the focus of the Business Spotlight are selected quarterly from those who have attended the previous Early Bird Breakfasts. Be sure to register for future Early Bird Breakfasts to be included in the next drawing.










Adams Celebrates 25 years of Holiday Joy When the 41st LaGrange Christmas Parade lines up at Granger Park on November 30, there will be colorfully decorated floats, marching bands, costumed dancers and vehicles of all shapes, sizes and descriptions. To a casual observer, it would appear to be mass chaos, but at the stroke of 6:00, harmony and coordination miraculously occur as each entry takes its place when the parade begins to roll. What may seem to happen effortlessly is only because of one man who has spent the last 25 years lining up the parade participants so that the parade goes off without a hitch. Warren Adams was just 13 years old in 1992 when he began to work with H.B. and Elaine Bradley who, for many years, helped the Chamber organize the parade. Under their leadership, the parade grew and became a “must-see” event that drew people from all over Troup and surrounding counties. Adams’ father had recently passed away, so his mother started volunteering with the Chamber’s Women's Division (which directed the parade for years) to fill the void. She often allowed Adams to tag along with her to events and volunteered him to help with the parade. In those early years, Adams helped the Bradleys line up the parade units and made sure the parade had a smooth start as it left Granger Park. A few years later, Mr. Bradley was injured in an accident and was no longer able to help with the parade. That’s when Adams took over the primary duty of running the parade. “The trick to getting everyone lined up correctly is having a great team to help me with the controlled chaos. My mom, Donna Adams, has helped for 24 years and my wife, Brandy, helped for eight years before we had children. Now my friend, John Andrews, has been helping me for the past five. There is definitely a method to the madness, but it’s so much easier with them by my side,” Adams said. While his real job is managing Lafayette Parkway Mini-Storage, he takes his once a year job very seriously. And why does he keep coming back year after year? “It makes me feel pretty special that my kids want to see me direct the floats almost as much as they want to see the parade itself. This is my way of giving back to the community. Thousands of people come together for the sake of bringing joy to others and to kick off the Christmas season. It’s pretty cool that I get to be a part of that.” In the 41 years LaGrange has had a Christmas Parade, it has never had to be cancelled because of weather. As Adams celebrates his quarter of a century serving as the conductor of this holiday tradition, he’s hoping for another beautiful night that will draw thousands to downtown LaGrange to experience the sights and sounds of Christmas. TT

Happy 25th Anniversary, Warren! BILL CLINTON was elected our 42nd president.

COST OF LIVING IN 1992: Postage stamp ............................................. $0.29 Loaf of bread ................................................. $1.50 Gallon of milk ............................................... $2.14 Gallon of gas ................................................. $1.05

ZELL MILLER was governor of Georgia. CHRIS JOSEPH was mayor of LaGrange.

Pound of bacon ........................................... $1.92 Average New Car price.................... $16,950.00 Average Annual Income.................$30,300.00


November 2017















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LaGrange, Georgia Christmas Parade 2017 Carl Von Epps and Ricky Wolfe accept the invitation to serve as Grand Marshals for the 2017 LaGrange Christmas Parade.

Let There be Peace on Earth for 41st Annual LaGrange Christmas Parade Carl Von Epps and Ricky Wolfe, two local leaders who have worked to build community for decades, most recently as the founding partners of the Racial Trustbuilding initiative, will serve as the Grand Marshals for the 41st Annual LaGrange Christmas Parade on November 30. The theme for this year’s parade, “Let There be Peace on Earth,” was inspired by the 1955 song that has become a signature composition devoted to world peace and harmony among peoples. “Carl and Ricky are both representative of the collaborative spirit that is needed to foster peace and harmony in our community,” said parade coordinator LeTisha Smith. Carl Von Epps served as the District 132 state representative for more than 20 years in the Georgia House, and has more than 35 years of experience as a successful entrepreneur and businessman. He is pastor of Smith Chapel United Methodist Church in Newnan, Georgia. “It’s an honor to have been invited to serve as grand marshal with my friend Ricky Wolfe. The work we have

been doing in our trust-building initiative has provided insight, inspiration and opportunities to the citizens who have participated to be better citizens of Troup County and the kingdom of God, which is our goal and objective,” says Epps Ricky Wolfe is a native of Troup County who returned home after a successful business career. He served two terms as Chairman of the Troup County Commission and remains active in the community. “I am honored to engage in the work of Racial Reconciliation with my friend Carl Von Epps,” says Wolfe. The parade will begin at 6:00 PM as Epps and Wolfe lead the array of floats and marching units from Granger Park to downtown LaGrange along Church Street, down Bull Street and return up Main Street past Lafayette Square on its way back to the starting point. The parade features floats, marching bands, and a special guest appearance from Santa Claus to kick off the holiday season. TT


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e believe that the cyber threat to small business is real and continuing to grow. Everyday each of us hears of the multiple incidents of cyber-attacks hitting businesses around the country. Whether the attacks are criminal in nature, initiated through state actors, or from a lone hacker sitting at their computer, they each can have a devastating effect on a small business. Through all of this discussion on cybersecurity, we also believe that there is an opportunity emerging for those small businesses that proactively address their online cyber presence now.  By taking the lead to create a more secure cyber/online presence, we believe that a small business can begin to better position themselves in the marketplace to be a more trusted resource for their customers and that a strong plan will open up to them a growing market for Federal contracts and vendor relationships with larger corporations.  At the University of Georgia SBDC, we are setting the context of our initiative to be more of an incentive based approach to building a cybersecurity plan versus a defensive based reaction to malware, a hack, ransomware or some other form of a cyber-attack. Thus, we refer to our program as #CyberStrength as opposed to CyberSecurity.  We want the business clients we work with to become #CyberStrong, assisting these businesses to continue to grow and to allow the owners to focus on the benefits of setting a strong cyber plan as they deal with the current threat environment (as opposed to focusing more on the threats out there).  One relevant article that relates to this topic from the Harvard Business Review is "Good Cybersecurity Can Be Good Marketing." The other imminent issue we see on the horizon relates to the compliance requirement activating as of 31 December 2017 for businesses doing business with the Federal government (focusing on protecting controlled, unclassified information), NIST SP 800171. This standard will require businesses securing Department of Defense (DOD), Federal contracts (and are dealing with controlled, unclassified information) to have a certain level of


November 2017

cybersecurity (to include a cybersecurity plan) in place in order to obtain and hold the contract. One of the primary reasons for this requirement is that cybercriminals and cyber state actors are using the small and medium business contractors as a backdoor into the DOD/Federal systems. We are also seeing larger companies adopting a similar requirement going forward and it is our goal to proactively assist our clients in preparing their online presence to meet these requirements.  If you are, or plan to be, doing business with the Federal government in the next year (and after), you need to understand this requirement better now and begin to put into place the necessary processes to satisfy the standard of compliance.  Stay tuned for more information that will be coming to this site and consider setting up a Google Alert for: NIST SP 800-171.  If you have questions on this standard, please contact me at 706-569-2651, and we will work to connect you with the appropriate resource.   Consider bookmarking our site for updates on additional resources and information: cyber/.  This site will continue to develop over the coming months as we work to put together the best resources and information we can find to help the small businesses we work with continue to strengthen their cyber presence.  We are under attack, folks, and you can choose to be either a victim or proactively take charge and implement these changes. Join with us and let’s all become #CyberStrong. TT



555 South Davis Rd | 300 Church St | 2231 West Point Rd 800.763.4444 | |



Hummingbirds Come Home to Nest in Hogansville


rior to the recent Hogansville Hummingbird Festival, 11 fiberglass hummingbirds painted by local artists were installed at landmarks around the city. Designed to entice children and adults alike, the Hummingbird Trail project is a collaborative effort between the City of Hogansville, the Hogansville Downtown Development Authority, and the Tourism Advisory Council of the LaGrange-Troup County Chamber of Commerce. “The Tourism Advisory Council is excited to see the hummingbirds in their new home,” says JJ Kuerzi, Chamber CoVice Chair for Marketing and Tourism. “Everyone involved with the project is excited about the interactive aspect. In fact, we have already seen a number of selfies taken by visitors with the birds during the recent Hummingbird Festival. As more people learn of the Trail, we expect foot traffic to increase in and around the city.” The chamber enlisted two local businesses to do the final preparation and get them ready for installation. West Georgia Paint and Body, in LaGrange, was asked to put the final clear coat on the completed birds. “We used a tack cloth to get the lint off, then sprayed them,” said Jeff Arrington. He’s worked at the auto repair shop for 15 years, but has never been asked to clear coat a bird before now. “It took about 30 minutes per bird.” Once the birds were ready to be installed, the chamber turned to Cornelius Herndon and PC Screen Printing in LaGrange. “I knew they’d need to be moved and handled, so I made a stand for each one,” he said. He knew the birds, once hung, would have to rotate and designed a post to go in the ground in concrete.

The artists drew inspiration from the history of Hogansville, as well as their own artistic visions as they conceived and executed their designs for each bird. Laura Gfelner painted two birds, “Ride the Waves,” and “Living in a Teacup.” “Being a Southern California girl, I grew up next to the ocean. So to immerse myself in painting this beautiful green wave was wonderful,” she said. “To me, the ocean is a picture of God, amazingly beautiful, and overflowing with power beyond our imagination. Always there, always full of life. It covers the world, and invites us on adventures of discovery. We were made to ride the waves.” Mary Fields painted the “Mad Hatter” and “Book Bird.” “As a Hogansville resident, I consider it a unique privilege to provide this ‘Book Bird’ Hummingbird for my community,” she said. “The design features a literary quote on the body with the wings done as stacked library books of different colors and from different angles (both spine facing and pages facing). The quote is one of my favorite Dumbledore references from the Harry Potter series.”

“I tried to create simple elegance within my design drawing inspiration from Victorian era tea parties while reflecting on the beauty one can enjoy in the company of others,” she said. Susie McKibben painted “Greenwave Awesome,” displayed near Hogansville Elementary School. “The school has been a fixture and a source of pride for several generations of Greenwaves, first as a high school, then as an elementary,” she said. “Currently there is a schoolwide mission to ‘bring dreams to life for every student through motivation, encouragement, and hard work.’ Hogansville Elementary is investing time, energy, and heart for each student to help them all achieve their dreams. The future of Hogansville, and Troup County as a whole, depends greatly on the success of the next generation.” Still to come is an illustrated brochure with more details and historical facts related to each bird and its final nesting spot. There will be a formal dedication for the trail in the coming months. TT

Hannah Metternick-Jones painted “Sunset Glow,” “The 8,” and “Page Turner.” “The textiles and cotton trade once played a major role in making Hogansville into the town it is today,” she said. “Through this Hummingbird I wanted to simply capture a sense of nostalgia looking back on such an important part of our town's history.” Page Turner is installed, appropriately, near the library.

Both local businesses were happy to help with the project.

“This design was chosen to simply show how we are inspired through the pages of a book to think outside the box, let our imaginations run wild and challenge us to become who it is we are meant to be,” she said.

“All the artists were awesome,” Arrington said.

Georgia Metternick-Jones painted “Little Puffer Belly”

“It was just a matter of sitting down and thinking about what would work,” he said. “It really doesn’t fall that far outside of what I normally do every day. It’s very akin to hanging a sign.”

and “The Rose.”

Anna Willis (Parmer Monument) and Renae Willis (Chamber) took a selfie with the bird named "Ride the Waves". 26

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You are the center of our attention. Building a lasting relationship with you and our community is important to us. And, it all starts with listening and simply being there for you, anytime. It also means understanding your needs and responding with solutions to meet those needs. Like family. We wouldn’t have it any other way. Talk to us today. 706.880.2200 Banking products are provided by Synovus Bank, Member FDIC. Divisions of Synovus Bank operate under multiple trade names across the Southeast.











Good Health is all in the Family Sometimes you can go home again. And for some it’s not only an opportunity to be part of your hometown, but also to care for its citizens, while working in the family business. Here in LaGrange, we’ve seen several healthcare professionals return home to carry on the family legacy of caring for this community. Following is the story of a few of LaGrange’s own who have felt called to return home.

John Morgan Jackson, D.M.D., & His Dad, John Jackson Jr., D.M.D – Private Dental Practice After graduating from the Dental College of Georgia at Augusta University, John Morgan Jackson returned to LaGrange in June 2017 to join the dental practice his father, John Jackson, started more than 30 years ago. He says: “I never had a desire to live anywhere other than LaGrange. I was born and raised here and feel deeply tied to the community. LaGrange has always been a great city, but during the eight years I was away at school, it’s experienced significant growth and development that make it an even more desirable place to work and raise a family. The new shops and restaurants, Wild Leap Brewery, and Sweetland Amphitheatre have created a vibrant atmosphere in downtown LaGrange. However, the most vital aspect of LaGrange’s charm is the great people in this community.

Ralston & Grant Major

Ralston Major, M.D., & His Dad, Grant Major, M.D. – General Surgeons at Emory Clark Holder Clinic

“So, when I decided I wanted to go into dentistry, it seemed like a no-brainer to move back to LaGrange and work with my dad. I can’t think of a better scenario: I get to live in LaGrange, work at a well-established practice, and spend time with one of my best friends and mentor.

A 2002 LaGrange High School graduate, Dr. Ralston Major returned to LaGrange in June 2015 to work at Emory Clark Holder Clinic alongside his dad, Dr. Grant Major, both as general surgeons. He not only followed in his father’s footsteps, but also his grandfather’s and uncle’s – all physicians who went to Lipscomb University in Nashville, Tennessee, for their undergraduate studies.

“It’s a great privilege anytime you get the opportunity to work with someone who has more than 30 years in the field of dentistry. The knowledge and experience that he’s shared with me since we began working together has taught me things that might take a whole career to learn on my own.”

He says: “There aren’t many small towns like LaGrange. I loved growing up here, and I’ve always wanted to raise my family here. It’s been a unique experience to practice medicine in the same city as my grandfather, father and uncle. I’ve been told countless stories about my grandfather during patient visits. Having the opportunity to come back home to work with my dad and my Uncle Paul was a huge draw for me. I learned my Uncle Paul was diagnosed with a glioblastoma during my final year of residency. I wouldn’t trade anything for the time I got to spend with him during my first two years of practice.”

His dad says: “John Morgan always knew he’d return to LaGrange, but I didn’t. In his first semester at Auburn he decided then to go into dentistry and make a plan to come back here. Because he’s always been so focused on details, dentistry really suits him well. It’s been great being in practice together. We have a wonderful relationship, and I trust him wholeheartedly. I know that he’s going to take good care of our patients, so I don’t have to worry. I’ve even been able to take some time off when I need to. So, it’s really worked out great for both of us.”

Ralston’s dad says: “From the time he was a young teenager, he always said he was coming back to LaGrange to live. As far as going into medicine, his granddaddy had more impact on him than anyone. I didn’t try to sway him to go into surgery, I just told him to pick a field you really love, and you’ll have a job that you’ll never hate going to in the morning. Some doctors today actually discourage their kids from going into medicine. I did not – I still think it’s the best profession around. You always wear a white hat – you always try to help people.” “Working with my dad has been great,” says Ralston. “It’s been invaluable for me to have his input and experience on difficult cases, and it’s been fun for me to show him new techniques. When you first start out in practice, it’s important to have partners and mentors you trust. What better partner to have than your dad?” John Morgan & John Jackson Jr. 28

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CRNA Rohit Avula & His Dad, Dr. Jaiwant Avula – Anesthesiology at WellStar West Georgia Medical Center Even after graduating from LaGrange Academy, Rohit Avula did not leave his hometown. He went on to attend LaGrange College, where he earned a Bachelor of Science in Nursing in Jaiwant & Rohit Avula 2012. His connection to LaGrange continued as he fulfilled his Sims Scholarship requirement by working as a registered nurse in WellStar West Georgia Medical Center’s Intensive Care Unit for more than two years. After gaining that critical care nursing experience, he left to attend Augusta University to study nursing anesthesia, where he graduated in December 2016 with a Master of Science in Nursing and became a Certified Registered Nurse Anesthetist. Naturally, he then returned to LaGrange, for a special opportunity alongside his father, Anesthesiologist Dr. Jaiwant Avula. Rohit says: “I was interested in returning to LaGrange to embrace the opportunity to work alongside my father, as he was nearing retirement age. Toward the end of 2016, I completed my final clinical rotations of my Nursing Anesthesia program at WellStar West Georgia Medical. And after passing my board exam and completing the credentialing process, I began working there in March 2017. “My father and I are both anesthesia providers for WellStar West Georgia, so we are able to work alongside each other often. I find him to be an irreplaceable resource, as I am continually developing and evolving as a new anesthesia provider. I regularly hear sincere, positive sentiments concerning my father, from both staff and patients alike. Hearing those reports fills me with pride and motivates me to keep learning from him, so I may master the art of anesthesia as he has proven to do." “Many of the anesthesia providers and much of the hospital staff have known me as I’ve grown up in LaGrange and worked at the hospital in different capacities and roles over the years. Coming back to work with them was like returning to a family I’ve always been a part of. Likewise, Rohit’s father, Jaiwant, has also found his work here to be fulfilling and was originally attracted to LaGrange from New York in 1997 because of the warmer weather and friendly lakeside community. He says: “By working in a small community hospital, you are able to develop a cordial and congenial relationship with the surgeons and operating room staff, which is important for an anesthesiologist. “Since my wife, Dorothy, and I were in the medical field, my children (Rohit and Krystal) had always been attracted to healthcare. During the summers of their secondary education, they both were junior volunteers at our hospital. While completing their undergraduate education, they both worked in the hospital, Rohit as an Anesthesia Technician and Krystal as a Pharmacy Technician. I did encourage Rohit to pursue the medical field because he has always had an affinity for science and displayed a critical thinking capacity at a very young age. After observing me at work, he showed specific interest in anesthesia practice." “But it was Rohit’s idea to come back to LaGrange! And, of course, I encouraged him to work in our department, as did our Chief Anesthetist, who offered him a position upon completion of his Nursing Anesthesia graduate studies and subsequent board-certification as a CRNA."









Randy Meeks and the team at The Medicine Cabinet, Vernon Street

Randy Meeks and his sons, Greg, Ryan and Blake – Medicine Cabinet

After retiring from Milliken, Randy Meeks had an idea to follow in the footsteps of his siblings – to start his own pharmacy business. In 2010, the Medicine Cabinet opened its doors, as a family business, with Randy’s sons, joining him. “All of my three siblings were pharmacists, with the most successful being my younger brother who owned seven locations at the time I thought of starting the Medicine Cabinet. His model was profitable, and we felt with my experience in acquisitions and start-up of manufacturing plants and processes we could repeat that success in this area,” explained Meeks “Like many families, our three sons had started careers outside of LaGrange. We were interested in starting a pharmacy business, but only if we could build it for the future and not just to provide a job for us until we decided to retire again. This would not be fair to the employees we would hire to share our vision. We talked to our sons and found that each was interested in being a part of the plan.” The middle son, Ryan, agreed to go back to school to get a degree in Pharmacy. The youngest son Blake who had been working for WinShape, and had a background in business management agreed to take on the responsibility of dayto-day operations of the management office and front-end sales part of the retail stores. Gregg, the oldest, agreed to learn how to produce old-fashioned soda treats and make fresh ice cream in house. “The Soda Shoppe at our Vernon location has been a huge hit with children, parents and grandparents as well as teenagers and all ages. Gregg recently went to Chicago to receive training in roasting coffee beans. Our new store at Lee’s Crossing will have a Coffee Shoppe, and we’ll roast our own coffee beans in house in order to provide the highest quality product possible,” continued Meeks. Ultimately, everything is focused around the mission statement ‘To provide a level of service that is exceedingly and abundantly above and beyond anything that you would ever expect or imagine.’ Quick to express his pride, Meeks spoke excitedly about his sons and their decision to return home. “I am delighted that Ryan, Blake and Gregg have returned to LaGrange and work in the business. They share a commitment to fulfill our mission everyday.” TT



(Photography by

Dekmar Sworn in as IACP President, Honored at ADL In Concert Against Hate

LaGrange Police Chief Louis Dekmar was sworn in as the President of the International Association of Chiefs of Police (IACP) on October 24 in Philadelphia. The IACP is the world’s largest law enforcement leadership organization.

After his swearing in, Dekmar addressed the thousands of law enforcement leaders across the world to announce his initiatives for the upcoming year including continuing the One Mind Campaign, focusing on protecting at-risk adults, and creating a new initiative called the TRUST initiative.

Dan McAlexander, along with other community and faith members apologized for the department's involvement in the 1940 lynching death of Austin Callaway, an African-American teenager. After the teen's death, officials did not investigate or attempt to find Callaway's killers.

The TRUST initiative will be partially funded by the million dollar Michael Jordan Grant. The goal is to provide support and resources for police leaders who must engage with communities that carry the mistrust of the past into the present.

According to Doron Ezickson with the AntiDefamation League, "Chief Louis Dekmar recognized the power and responsibility of his office in moving his department and the citizens of LaGrange towards racial reconciliation."

Dekmar was also honored on Monday, October 30th in Washington, D.C. during the 23rd annual Anti-Defamation League In Concert Against Hate at the John F. Kennedy Center for Performing Arts.

Dekmar says he was honored to accept the award on behalf of the Callaway family, the Troup County NAACP, LaGrange College, and the City of LaGrange. “I commend the ADL for recognizing communities who have invested in racial trust building initiatives,” he said. “This is but the first step in what our community leaders have been working on the last three years.”

In January, Dekmar, LaGrange Mayor Jim Thornton, LaGrange College President



POINT Celebrates 80th anniversary

West Point, Georgia, was bustling with activity October 21-22 as Point University celebrated its 80th anniversary during homecoming weekend. Hundreds of alumni came into town to enjoy luncheons, alumni athletic games, fine arts concerts and prayer walks around the community. Community members, students, faculty/ staff and prospective students joined in on Saturday, beginning with a pep rally in downtown West Point featuring the Point Marching Skyhawks and cheerleaders and leading to an exciting football game. Point ended its homecoming weekend with a festival at the West Point River Park as Point not only celebrated 80 years of impact, but also its fifth year in the West Point community. 30

November 2017

Photo Jennifer Stalcup


Solomon named one of Georgia Trend’s 40 under 40

Michael J. Solomon, a native of LaGrange, was recently named one of the state’s best and brightest under the age of 40 by Georgia Trend. Solomon currently serves as the Chief Operating Officer for Senior Citizens Inc. in Savannah.

Satoko Kanai, DC., BCAO has joined the practice at Aspinwall Chiropractic Clinic. LAM earns Bronze Award

The LaGrange Art Museum is excited to announce that In the Land of Pasaquan: The Story of Eddie Owens received the Bronze Award (exhibits with budgets under $10,000) in the Southeastern Museum Conference Exhibition Competition. Congratulations to Fred Fussell who curated this brilliant exhibit and everyone at Pasaquan and Columbus State University for the excellent work they did in support of this exhibition.

A graduate of Life University College of Chiropractic, Dr. Kanai practices chiropractic to serve and to promote optimum health to the community. Her greatest strengths are her strong commitment to serving God through Chiropractic, connecting with people and their individual needs with consideration, and her passion for serving older adults in the community.

The competition focuses attention on exhibitions of merit that are well designed, have educational value and treat objects with care and respect. It showcases the best in the profession and provides benchmarks for regional exhibition efforts in southeastern museums. Lauren Oliver, Interim Director accepted the award on behalf of the Museum at the SEMC 2017 Annual Awards Luncheon on September 12th in New Orleans.

KMMG and West Georgia Tech Certify Maintenance Team Members Kia Motors Manufacturing Georgia, Inc. (KMMG) recently recognized its second graduating class from its Maintenance Certification Program (MCP).

“The Maintenance Certification Program allows KMMG to develop a steady stream of talent ready to move into job openings in the maintenance team as they arise,” said Stuart C. Countess, chief administrative officer. “In addition, the program provides yet another opportunity for career development for production team members who want to use their skills in a new way. Georgia Quick Start Assistant Commissioner Jackie Rohosky and her team have been a valuable partner to KMMG from the very beginning and have set the stage for a successful future.” “KMMG is a premier industry partner for West Georgia Tech. The Maintenance Certification Program has been a great success in combining our expertise in applicable, real-world training and KMMG’s need for qualified industrial maintenance technicians,” Daniel said.




Join us in celebrating our members!


Dr. Brent Brown Eyecare 101 S. Dawson Street, LaGrange

Caring Spirits, LLC 815 3rd Avenue, West Point

Kimble’s Food by Design New Facility 100 Webster Street, LaGrange

nexAir 266 New Airport Road, LaGrange

Serendipity 380 S. Davis Road Suite G, LaGrange

The Thread Phase 2 Groundbreaking Eastside Park, LaGrange

November 2017



Caterpillar 20th Anniversary Celebration 100 S. L. White Boulevard, LaGrange

Duracell Expansion Topping Off Celebration 1567 Lukken Industrial Drive W, LaGrange

Nickell Equipment & Sales 1902 Roanoke Road, LaGrange

Nissan of LaGrange 1050 Lafayette Parkway, LaGrange

Vince Sutton Boulevard Dedication Lucy Morgan Homes, LaGrange

Wild Leap Brew Co. 308 Main Street, LaGrange






From pancakes to politics to honoring our brave public safety officials and celebrating all that is “made in Troup County,” more than 800 member representatives networked at the Chamber’s Early Bird Breakfasts.

AUGUST The US Chamber’s Clark Thomason was among those in attendance at the annual Pancakes and Politics breakfast in August featuring US Congressman Drew Ferguson.

(l-r) Clark Thomason, Chamber Chair John Asbell (Georgia Power), Congressman Ferguson, Joel Finlay (Baston-Cook Company).

SEPTEMBER The men and women serving as public safety officials throughout Troup County were honored at the 5th Annual Troup County Valor Awards. Fire Chief David Wall as the featured speaker, and awards were presented by Chamber Chair-Elect Casey Smith (Calumet Bank) and sponsored by Frank McRae and Synovus. The breakfast coffee was sponsored by LaGrange College. The 2017 Lifesaving Awards were presented to Jordan Barnett and Daniel Gunter of the Troup County Fire Department and Colleen Hewett of the LaGrange Police Department. The Hogansville Police Department and the West Point Fire Department’s EMS Training Program received Medals of Merit. Melody Swason from Troup County E911 was recognized as the Communications Person of the year.

The breakfast coffee was sponsored by the LaGrange Symphony Orchestra. Door prize winners included Kim Learnard (West Georgia Technical College), Hans Boesing (Nesper International) and Bill Stankiewicz (William & Mary’s Antiques). Pictured (left to right), Learnard, Chamber Chair John Asbell, Congressman Ferguson, Boesing, Stankiewicz, and LaGrange Symphony Orchestra’s Raylene Carter.

The Troup County Sheriff’s Office was the recipient of the 2017 Public Safety Unit of the Year.

November 2017

LaGrange College’s Martha Pirkle and Rebecca Nicks present door prizes to lucky winners. Pictured left to right: Pirkle, George Bailey (City of Hogansville), Norma Tucker (City of LaGrange), Chamber ChairElect Casey Smith, Nicks

Lieutenant Cameron Mitchell of the West Point Police Department was the 2017 Public Safety Person of the Year. LaGrange Police Department’s Erik Vaughn, Chad Bohannon, Phoungeune Phommaly and Christopher Pritchett and Deputy Michael Hockett from the Troup County Sheriff’s Office received the Bronze Medal of Valor. Lastly, Troup County Sheriff’s Department Deputy Stephanie Masouka was presented the Purple Heart.


Speaker David Wall with West Point Fire Chief Mitt Smith and Chamber Chair-Elect Casey Smith (Calumet Bank)

Troup County Sheriff’s Department, 2017 Public Safety Unit of the Year

OCTOBER Kia Motors Manufacturing Georgia, Inc.’s Chief Administrative Officer, Stuart Countess, was the keynote speaker at the October Early Bird Breakfast. Tamlin Hall, Granger Pictures, also discussed the success of “Holden On,” the movie written and directed by Hall that was filmed in Troup County and tells the story of Holden Layfield, who was a classmate of Hall’s at LaGrange High School. The film has received international acclaim, especially for its examination of mental health and addiction issues. Curtis Brown also discussed renewal of the SPLOST. The breakfast coffee was sponsored by Kimble’s Food by Design.


CANDIDATE ACADEMY The Chamber, in collaboration with the Troup County Republican Party and the Troup County Democratic Party, hosted three candidate forums in advance of the November elections. Events were held in Hogansville, LaGrange and West Point with more than 300 persons attending. Moderated discussions were held with candidates for mayor and city council. In addition, town hall discussions were hosted by Curtis Brown and Dale Jackson, CoChairs of the Troup Tomorrow committee that advocated on behalf of the SPLOST renewal.


October Speakers included (left to right): Chamber Board Chair John Asbell (Georgia Power), Curtis Brown (Build the Crowd), Coffee Sponsor Kimble Carter (Kimble’s Food by Design), Stuart Countess (KMMG) and Tamlin Hall (Granger Pictures).


Pioneer Project’s Coffeehouse was the site of the quarterly Hogansville Business Council. Attendees enjoyed homemade pastries, delicious coffee and updates from member businesses. The 2017 Hogansville Hummingbird Festival poster was also unveiled by 85 South’s Patrick Terrail, Festival Director Mary Stewart and Mayor Bill Stankiewicz.

West Point candidates Steve Tramell, Deedee Williams and Tracy Bandy participate in the candidate forum.

STATE OF COMMUNITY LUNCHEONS Business and community leaders are participating in a series of four luncheons designed to take an in-depth look at topics of interest. Sponsored by Jackson Heating Air, the first luncheon focused on retail recruitment efforts with Scott VonCannon of Retail Strategies serving as keynote speaker. The second luncheon reviewed the state of manufacturing with Stuart Countess (Kia Motors Manufacturing Georgia, Inc.), Kevin Donovan (Jindal Films), Cynthia Culbreath (Duracell) and Tripp Skinner (Interface) providing an insight from their company perspectives.

Rebecca Roth Nicks (LaGrange College) receives Creative Call-Ins’ door prize from Chamber Chair Asbell (left) and KMMG’s Countess (right). Captain Robert Fawley and members of the West Point Police Department provided insight on how business owners may protect themselves from theft. The department hosted the event and provided tours to attendees following the program.

John Jackson and Scott VonCannon of Retail Strategies and sponsor Dale Jackson.

Cindy Smith (A-1 Employment, Inc.) received the door prize provided by Tuck’s Traditions.

And Ava Shiver (Apartment Rental Book) received the door prize sponsored by the Chamber’s newest members, Ice Days, LLC.

Sponsors Ben Jackson (far left) and Dale Jackson (second from right) with speakers Countess, Donovan, Culbreath and Skinner.




LEADERSHIP MATTERS The Leadership Troup program was founded in 1991 by Helen and Bill Rice (Moe’s) to provide an opportunity for business and community leaders to experience Troup County much the way Georgians get to know our state through the Leadership Georgia program. The J.W. Fanning Institute partners with the Chamber to provide a curriculum designed to familiarize participants with key local issues while also developing individual leadership skills. Thirty participants have been selected for the 2017-18 class, presented by Jindal Films, as follows: Kim Banks, Renasant Bank; LaSwann Beasley, Twin Cedars; CJ Carter, Kimble’s Food by Design; Chad Cooper, LaGrange Housing Authority; Kara Cooper, Blackwell’s; Ameia Cotton, Individual; Julia Cox-Pearson, WellStar West Georgia Medical Center; Steve Cromer, West Georgia Technical College; Rebecca

Davis, LaGrange College; Becca Eiland, Sweetland Amphitheatre; Kellie Farrell, Harmony House; Joshua Harrelson, Point University; Teara Harris, Seoyon E Hwa Interior Systems; Bethany Headrick, Hillside Montessori; Connie Hensler, American Red Cross; Arch Hodges, Coldwell Banker Spinks Brown Durand Realtors; James Hobbs, Interface; Regina Ingram, Re/ Max Results; Jamey Jackson, JC Malone; Ben Ladd, Emory at LaGrange; Liz

Lindemann, Mobis; Aaron Mabon, True North Investments; Tanya Pullie, Duracell; Brittany Simmons, Chamber of Commerce & Tourism; Donna Smoot, Kia Motors Manufacturing Georgia, Inc.; Mike Speight, Calumet Bank; Joe Sumner, thINC College & Career Academy; Leigh Threadgill, City of LaGrange; Stephen Watts, Milliken & Company; Kayla Yeargin, Troup County School System.

Christian School, Springwood School and LaGrange Academy and range in age from sophomores to seniors. Students participate in seven leadership sessions facilitated by Youth Leadership volunteers from August to November, including completing the ropes course at Camp Viola and an Etiquette Dinner at LaGrange College.

3rd Row: Temima Brown. Ava Smith, Trent Smith, Chloe Beall, Lizzie Doerr, Cooper Doughman, Cade Garner, Harrison Hunnicutt, Aundracia Riggins, Matthew Freeman, Kennedy Bowen, Jaquavious Daniels

Participants include the following: Front: Chelsae Nguyen, Ann Trainer, Carley Partridge, Caroline Childress, Emma Strickland, Lydia Alford, Claire Anne Corban Students from area high schools as well as homeschooled students are participating in the 2017 Youth Leadership program. Students represent Callaway High, LaGrange High, Troup High, Lafayette

SAFETY COUNCILS The Troup County Safety Council rocked to music as members learned how to create a culture of safety super stars, modeled after programs developed by Robert Brock of Adient. Thirty persons were in attendance at the August quarterly meeting.

2nd Row: Lily Kamat, Katie Lueken, Breanna Gay, Lucy Alford, Jaiden Gill, Anna Doerr, John Reed Batchelor, Sadie Bryan

Back Row: Karen Freeman (Co-Chairman), Shaylee Smith, Payton Moody, Matt Rainey, Jared Nation, Henry Seonwoo, Will Flowers, Montaveous Hall, Coleman Hull, Walt Stewart, Michelle Ashmore (CoChairman) Not pictured: Sam Asbell, Butler Evans, Cade Shadix

The October Safety Council meeting featured an OSHA Update by Bill Principe (left) of Constangy, Brooks & Smith LLP). Gary Langswager (right) hosted the event at Kia Motors Manufacturing Georgia, Inc. Following the program, many of the 36 attendees toured the plant.

(Left) Safety Council Co-Chairs Cliff Meeks (100 Black Men) and Jason Ransbottom (Powertech America) with speaker Robert Brock (Adient), center.


November 2017





May 31, 2018—that is the official opening date for Great Wolf Lodge in LaGrange. Chamber President Page Estes joined local officials for a hard hat tour of the facility in October. US Senator Johnny Isakson was excited to hear progress about the project during the Chamber’s DC Fly-In and donned wolf ears for the occasion!

More than 100 golfers enjoyed a perfect day on the links at The Fields Golf Club. The winner of the Chamber Class Cup was the team from Knox Pest Control. The team from Mike Patton Auto Family was second with teams from CB&T and Diverse Power tying for third. Ryan Gates from Knox Pest Control won the closest to the pin competition while Ryan Pretorius from Point University had the longest drive.

Great Wolf’s indoor water park under construction

Burch with Point University’s Ryan Pretorius

Chamber Past Chair Robby Burch (Interface) presents the Chamber Cup to the Knox Pest Control Team

Golfers enjoyed business on the tee and green, including special treats from the Jerry Cleaveland State Farm Insurance team.

ECLIPSE BASH More than 400 members and friends attended the Chamber’s Eclipse BASH. LaGrange City Councilmen Legree McCamey and Norma Tucker meet Brinley at the Great Wolf Tour.

Kathy Tilley (Troup County Center for Strategic Planning and Carrie Brkich (thINC College & Career Academy) view the solar eclipse from the Plaza. Great Wolf CEO Ruben Rodriguez and LaGrange Mayor Jim Thornton discuss progress on the resort build.

Jamey Jackson (Malone Staffing), Beth Schiller (Impact Outsourcing) and Kipper House (LaGrange Daily News) enjoy the celestial-themed refreshments at the BASH.



Virginia Cook Activity Center Restored to Past Glory group of eight local citizens banded together to see that this building was restored to its former glory” said Tramell. “This group was led by Diane Davidson who served as president of the group. Other members included Madeline Lee, Dorothy Billingsley, Jothaniel Ziegler, West Point City Councilman Ben Wilcox, Deedee Williams and Vivian Heard. Former Mayor Drew Ferguson and Councilwoman Gloria Marshall were also important participants in the project.”

The Virginia Cook Day Care Class of 1946


building on the verge of demolition is now the center of the community in West Point. The Virginia Cook Activity Center was dedicated in May, after a years-long effort to save the building at 806 Martin Luther King Jr. (MLK) Boulevard. The center originally opened as the Virginia Cook Day Care and Recreation Center in 1942 named after its founder. The opening came in the “war years” when many men were away in the military and mothers were forced to work. Children were often left with elderly neighbors or relatives, resulting in some tragedies and necessitating the center, according to the program provided by the city. It was not uncommon for up to 75 children to be at the center on a daily basis.

The city invested almost $350,000 to complete the work. “The significance of the building to the community was important,” said West Point City Manager Ed Moon. “We gutted what was left of the building and bought the two adjacent properties to use as a parking lot.” The city was inspired by old photographs

“Today we stand in the Historic East Side district West Point,” noted West Point Mayor Pro-Tem Steve Tramell during the dedication. “We honor Nora Potts, Eddie B. Canady, Lottie Canady, Rosabel Parker, Mary Joe Burton, Helen Reese, Marla Weston, Constance Burton, and many more who assisted Virginia Cook in this original endeavor.” After the original building burned, the Junior Women’s Club and Women’s Civic League got involved with other local groups and a new building - the MLK location - opened in 1954. Several years ago, a committee of residents and West Point City Council members was formed to raise money to save the building. “The school had closed and fell into disrepair when a (l-r) West Point Councilwoman Sandra Thornton, Deedee Williams, Diane Davison and West Point Councilwoman Gloria Marshall 38

November 2017


The building is now available for public events. On a recent fall day, the Salvation Army was in the building to register families for its annual Christmas program. For rental information, contact the city of West Point. Mayor Pro-Tem Tramell commended all who participated in the renovation effort while acknowledging the impact the Virginia Cook center has had past and present. “This is a fine addition to our community, one that will last another 75 years and more.” TT



and a program depicting the history of the building. Enlarged photos from the program hang in the building today to mark its history.














LaGrange Christmas Tree Lighting Thursday, November 30, 5:15 PM

Mayor Jim Thornton will host the annual LaGrange tree lighting ceremony beginning at 5:15 pm on the Plaza. Parade Grand Marshals Carl Von Epps and Ricky Wolfe, along with their families, will “flip the switch” to illuminate the downtown tree.

LaGrange Christmas Parade “Let There be Peace on Earth” Thursday, November 30, 6:00 PM

The LaGrange-Troup County Chamber of Commerce cordially invites you to participate in the 41st annual Christmas parade! Carl Von Epps and Ricky Wolfe, two local leaders who have worked to build community for decades, will serve as the Grand Marshals.

Valley-Wide (West Point) Christmas Parade Thursday, December 7, 6:00 PM

— contact Laurie Blount, 334-756-5281 or

Hogansville Christmas Parade Friday, December 9, 6:00 PM

contact for details.


Laura Jennings 706-885-0363 Follow The Shepherds Walks Every Friday and Saturday night in December up to Christmas Eve, Walks start at 6:00 PM

Follow the journey of Joseph and Mary as they travel from Nazareth to Bethlehem and learn new insights into the Christmas story. These evening walks can be done in conjunction with the Christmas multi-media presentation. Reservations requested, admission charged.

Christmas Show: A Shepherd Dog’s Story of the First Christmas Every Friday and Saturday night in December up to Christmas Eve, 7:30 PM

This multi-media presentation in the Roman stepped theatre provides new insights into the Christmas story. Admission charged.


Bettie Biggs 706-882-2734 We Gather Together A Concert of Praise and Thanksgiving Saturday, November 18, 7:00 PM & Sunday, November 19, 5:30 PM

This unique and beloved seasonal concert has become a community tradition across the West Georgia and East Alabama areas. Concert to be held at First Presbyterian Church in LaGrange. $15

DOWNTOWN LAGRANGE DEVELOPMENT AUTHORITY Barbie Watts 706-298-4534 Holiday Sip & Shop Friday, November 17, 5:00 – 9:00 PM

Downtown LaGrange shops extend their hours to kick off the holiday shopping season. Enjoy special sales, complimentary gift wrapping & food samples. Wine tasting available for a $25.00 donation benefitting a local charity. Open to the public, $25.00 donation to wine taste.

Holiday Open House Sunday, November 19, 1:00 – 5:00 PM

Downtown LaGrange’s annual holiday tradition. Festively decorated shops will inspire your holiday shopping. Free.


November 2017

Holiday Carriage Rides Friday, November 17 – Saturday, December 23

Enjoy a free carriage ride in Downtown LaGrange. Each Friday evening 5:00 – 9:00 PM, Saturdays & Sundays 1:00 – 5:00 PM. Children’s mini horse & sleigh ride at LaFayette Square – Saturdays & Sundays 1:00 – 5:00 PM. Tipping the driver is encouraged. Suggested rate: $5.00 to $10.00.

Mingle with Kringle Thursday, November 30, 3:00 - 5:00 PM

Meet Santa and his North Pole Friends at the Chamber of Commerce plaza before the lighting of LaGrange’s Christmas tree and parade. Bring your own camera. Free face painting - first come, first served, compliments of Vernon Woods Retirement community. Free, public invited.

Santa at the Square Saturdays in December, 1:00 – 4:00PM

Bring your wish list & camera for a visit with Santa at LaFayette Square. Rain location – Marketplace at LaFayette Square. Free, open to the public.

HILLS & DALES ESTATE Lauren Clark 706-882-3242

Boxwood Christmas Wreath Workshop (Session I) Friday, December 1, 10:00 AM – 12:00 PM

Come be a part of a day’s cheer and fun as the Hills & Dales staff guides you in creating a wreath using a variety of elegant, fresh evergreens and berries gathered from the estate. All participants will leave with a beautiful custom design to grace their door, complete with a hand-tied bow if desired. Bring clippers if you have them. All other supplies provided. $40 per person.


Mixed Green Christmas Wreath Workshop (Session II) Saturday, December 2, 10:00 AM – 12:00 PM

Come be a part of a day’s cheer and fun as the Hills & Dales staff guides you in creating a wreath using a variety of elegant, fresh evergreens and berries gathered from the estate. All participants will leave with a beautiful custom design to grace their door, complete with a hand-tied bow if desired. Bring clippers if you have them. All other supplies provided. $40 per person.

Mixed Green Christmas Wreath Workshop (Session III) Saturday, December 2, 1:00 – 3:00 PM

Come be a part of a day’s cheer and fun as the Hills & Dales staff guides you in creating a wreath using a variety of elegant, fresh evergreens and berries gathered from the estate. All participants will leave with a beautiful custom design to grace their door, complete with a hand-tied bow if desired. Bring clippers if you have them. All other supplies provided. $40 per person.

Holidays at Hills & Dales Saturday, December 2 – Saturday, December 30, 10:00 AM – 5:00 PM

Beginning Saturday, December 2 through December 30, the Callaway home and visitor center will be decorated for the Christmas season. The Callaway home will be adorned with fresh plants, flowers, and evergreens. The Christmas tree will be styled circa 1940s and a special display will adorn the Palm Room. Regular tour prices apply. $15 for adults/$7 for children & students.

Children’s Christmas Celebration Saturday, December 16, 10:00 AM – 1:00 PM

Children can create their own gingerbread house. There will also be a Christmas sing-along, story time, and visits with Santa. Free.

LAFAYETTE SOCIETY FOR PERFORMING ARTS (LSPA) Amy McDow 706-518-9089 cell 706-882-9909 office

Lafayette Ballet Company: The Nutcracker Friday, December 1, Saturday, December 2, 7:00 PM Saturday, December 2, Sunday, December 3, 2:00 PM

The classic holiday ballet, to Tchaikovsky’s popular score, includes vibrant costuming and beautiful dancing from the Lafayette Ballet Company. $16-22 Adults, $10-12 Students

Young Singers of West Georgia: Christmas Memories Friday, December 8, 7:00 PM Saturday, December 9, 3:00 PM

Join us for this holiday concert with the talented members of the Young Singers of West Georgia. $12 Adults, $10 Students

Lafayette Theatre Company: Vanya and Sonia and Masha and Spike Thursday, January 25 Saturday, January 27, 7:30 PM Thursday, February 1 Saturday, February 3, 7:30 PM Sunday, January 28, 2:00 PM

One of the most lauded and beloved Broadway plays of recent years, this comedy takes place at a peaceful home that is interrupted when a movie star sister brings her “boy toy” home. $17 Adults, $12 Students

LAGRANGE COLLEGE Debby Baker 706-880-8186

“God of Carnage” November 14-17, 7:30 PM

Lab Theater in Price Theater, LaGrange College In this Tony-award winning comedy of bad manners, chaos ensues when two sets of parents meet to resolve a playground dispute between their children. The gloves come off as the sparring begins. Tickets are $10 for adults, $8 for senior citizens (55 and older) and non-LC students and free for LC students faculty and staff. Contact box office at








Lessons and Carols December 3, 7:30 PM

Callaway Auditorium This annual service combines music and scripture to celebrate the Christmas season. Free.

LaGrange College Band Concert December 5, 7:30 PM Callaway Auditorium Free

“Desert Plains Images” Through December, 8:30 AM – 5:30 PM weekdays while college is in session Lamar Dodd Art Center, LaGrange College Paintings and photographs by Tim Taunton. Free.

LAGRANGE SYMPHONY ORCHESTRA Raylene Carter 706-882-0662

Embrace the Spirit of the Season – featuring Jason Coleman & Meagan Taylor LSO Subscription Concert Tuesday, December 12, 7:30 PM Callaway Auditorium


Box Office 706-298-7411 Sweetland on Ice Mid-November to Mid-February

Holiday Happenings at Sweetland. Please check for details



TROUP CARES FOR THOSE IN NEED CLINIC LOCATION 301 Medical Drive, Suite 501, LaGrange PHONE NUMBER: 706.882.1191


n 2006 two local physicians, Dr. Tom Gore and Dr. Bob Copeland, set out on a mission to create a clinic for those in our area who are working and trying to support their families, pay rent, make car payments, pay for other financial obligations and in many cases, send their children to college, along with trying to make ends meet. This group is comprised of hardworking members of our society who simply need a little support. They are citizens who often fall through the cracks in not only our nation’s medical services, but also in many other areas. WHY TROUP CARES The Troup Cares Free Clinic provides these individuals with something they’ve never had – a medical home. Our patients can now come to our clinic at the onset of a health concern, and in most cases we can handle it either in-house or through one of our many specialists. This is a major breakthrough away from the emergency room cycle into which so many of our patients had fallen.

In addition, our full-time Care Management program and Pharmaceutical Assistance program have enabled our professional staff to work with and plan for the medical and care direction for each of our patients. We’ve already seen many examples of in-house solutions to medical issues that eliminated visits to the emergency room and possible hospital admission. WHO WE ARE Since seeing our first patient in June 2007, the Troup Cares Free Clinic has served about 2,090 individual patients. More than 100 volunteers, including doctors and nurses, donate their time and talents to ensure these patients in need receive a high-quality of care. Our volunteers are critical to our work at the clinic. We could not operate without them. LaGrange Personal Aid has always done a great job providing screening for eligibility since we first opened. With the combination of these efforts we believe what we do at Troup Cares saves lives every day. To further serve our patients, Troup Cares partners with several organizations including: WellStar West Georgia Medical Center, Medical Park Foundation, LaGrange Personal Aid, LaGrange Lions Club, Heart of West Georgia, United Way, First United Methodist Church, First Baptist Church on the Square, LaGrange College School of Nursing, University of West Georgia School of Nursing, Columbus State University School of Nursing, and Thornton & Graham Attorneys at Law. Troup Cares is an affiliate of the Georgia Charitable Care Network, the Volunteers in Medicine Institute and the Georgia Volunteer Health Care Program. WHAT WE DO Open four days a week, the Troup Cares Clinic offers the following services to patients: 1. General patient orientation to the clinic and education relating to the clinic

2. Triage of newly oriented patients for acuity of illness 3. New patient appointments that include assessment of total body systems; lab work/tests, as appropriate; specialist referral, as appropriate; and medication orders, as appropriate 4. Test result interpretation and action, as appropriate 5. Follow-up appointment in keeping with generally accepted medical standards 6. Disease management and education 7. Medication management and education 8. Pharmacy services 9. Nutritional counseling 10. Care coordination and collaboration between Pathways Mental Health Services and Troup Cares (Troup Cares Counseling Program) 11. Bi-annual free Breast Cancer Screening in collaboration with West Central Georgia Cancer Coalition WHO QUALIFIES To receive treatment, all patients must meet these specific qualifications: • Troup County Resident for at least 6 months • Employed for at least 30 days within the past 6 months o Employed within the last 6 months o Drawing Unemployment • Between the ages of 19 and 64 • No appropriate Healthcare • At or below 200% of Federal Poverty Guidelines • USA Citizen or in the country with a valid Visa or Permit

All patients are initially certified through LaGrange Personal Aid and all patients are recertified annually through the Troup Cares, Inc. Clinic. Troup Cares patients incur no charge for services provided via the clinic. To continue providing these much-needed services to the community, Troup Cares accepts financial donations online ( or via mail (PO Box 800027, LaGrange, GA, 30240). TT

Donna Cherry, Executive Director Troup Cares

Members chosen to be the focus of the Nonprofit Spotlight are selected quarterly from those who have attended the previous Early Bird Breakfasts. Be sure to register for future Early Bird Breakfasts to be included in the next drawing. 42

November 2017

LaGrange Housing Authority is dedicated to the service of our community. We are always willing to lend a helping hand.


"I've learned to be grateful for my friends because it's always good to have someone in your corner, and you should never underestimate yourself." ~Grace Summers 2017 Callaway High Valedictorian

"My priority was to get college credits and challenge myself rather than strive for a number or rank...that doesn't define who you are as a person." ~Karan Lakhwani 2017 LaGrange High Valedictorian

"I moved from a tiny middle school to Troup High. Being involved in school activities helped me make new friends that I will cherish after high school." ~Kiara Thompson 2017 Troup High Valedictorian



YOUR VIDEO PRODUCTION SOLUTION We Shoot. We Edit. We Deliver. Corporate Communications Orientation/Safety/Training • Educational • Broadcast •


November 2017

Branding/Marketing Recruitment • Capital Campaign • Documentary •


invites you to a


December 14, 2017 • 5:00 – 7:00pm

at Splash Kitchens & Bath Design Gallery 115 Broad Street, Suite 103, LaGrange

Join us for an evening of Holiday Food, Fun and Fellowship.



december 2–30

Tour the historic Georgian Italian villa decorated for the holidays, including a Christmas tree styled circa 1940s and a special display in the Palm Room.

Annual Passes make great gifts! Inquire in the gift shop.

1916 Hills & Dales Drive | LaGrange, Ga | | 706-882-3242 A Historic Property of Fuller E. Callaway Foundation


H Y P E – H E L P I NG Y OU NG P ROF ES SI ON ALS EN G AG E HYPE is a high impact group of diverse young professionals working together to showcase Troup County as a unique and fun place to work and live. HYPE provides its members with opportunities for building relationships with community and business leaders and cultivates an atmosphere for building personal relationships and a sense of purpose within the community.


Ameia Cotton

Current Occupation: Probation Officer   Why did you choose this occupation? I always had a passion for helping people, and in this field even though someone makes a bad decision, I am able to help them make a better tomorrow.   How long have you lived in Troup County?  All my life   Married/Single/Kids? I have one daughter who is my world. Aniah Rutledge is nine and in the fourth grade at Callaway Elementary School   Why does living in Troup County work for you?  Living in Troup County works for me because all my family is here.   When you’re not working, what do you like to do?  I love working in the community and coaching the Varsity Basketball Cheerleaders at Callaway High School.   What is the best piece of advice you have ever received? I can do ALL things through Christ that strgethens me. (Philippians 4:13)  


What is your best personal achievement? Becoming Partner of my probation company What are your future plans?  To further expand and enhance the growth of my company   Favorite Ice Cream Flavor:  Butter Pecan   All-Time Favorite Movie & Why: Lean on Me because it showed how he came back to his foundation and made a better tomorrow.   If you won $1 million, what would you do with the money? Pay all of my bills off and further enhance youth in our community through a nonprofit organization that I have developed.   Favorite “after work” spot in Troup County: Brickhouse   Favorite Place to Visit outside of Troup County? California

SAVE THE DATE! THURSDAY, NOVEMBER 15, 12 NOON: Networking lunch at Moe’s for HYPE members and prospective members. It’s Dutch treat. Join us for great food and conversation!

Fore! HYPE took to the links with members enjoying a day at the links during the Chamber’s Annual Golf Classic. The group sponsored the popular “kilt hole.” Board member Jessica Brannen and Calumet Bank’s Mike Speight don the Scottish attire!


November 2017

More than 100 walkers, runners and canines enjoyed the 2nd Annual Bark at the Park that included a 5k race and 1K stroll through the streets around Granger Park and The Thread. The event raised $4,250 for the LaGrange-Troup County Humane Society!

THURSDAY, NOVEMBER 30: Jingle & Mingle with HYPE to watch the Annual LaGrange Christmas Parade from the Del’avant Rooftop. Families welcome. For more information and to register, please visit the calendar events at


The Care You Expect. Professionals You Know. A Name You Trust. Our ever-expanding roster of local medical specialist are part of the world-renowned Emory Healthcare system and have access to the same technology and medical resources as our counterparts in Atlanta and around the world. You don’t have to travel to receive the best care available – it is available to our patients right here in LaGrange. More options, close to home, & the largest multi-specialty group practice in Troup County. • • • • • • • •

Emory Clark-Holder Clinic 303 Smith Street LaGrange, GA 30240 706.882.8831


November 2017

Davis Road Primary Care 380 South Davis Rd., Ste E & F LaGrange, GA 30240 706.882.8831

• • • • • • • •

Allergies Bariatric Surgery Cardiology Cosmetic Treatments Facial Plastics Family Medicine Gastroenterology General Surgery

West Point Family Practice 1610 East 10th St. West Point, GA 31833 706.882.8831

Gynecology Internal Medicine Oncology Ophthalmology Orthopedics Pulmonary Medicine Radiology Sports Medicine

Emory Southern Center for Orthopedics 1805 Vernon Rd. LaGrange, GA 30240 706.884.2691


Troup Trends - November 2017  

The November 2017 issue of Troup Trends features an inside look at Rep. Drew Ferguson’s first nine months in the U.S. House of Representativ...

Troup Trends - November 2017  

The November 2017 issue of Troup Trends features an inside look at Rep. Drew Ferguson’s first nine months in the U.S. House of Representativ...