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APR. 15 - APR. 28, 2016 • VOL. 10 — NO. 8


Buckhead Reporter


► Retiring House member works on WWI dog movie PAGE 3 ► Blacksmith teaches kids an old art PAGE 15 DO MY FINGERS LOOK FAT? | P9

Shear fun at the History Center

Massell: Today’s renters...‘will be tomorrow’s leaders’ BY JOHN RUCH AND JOE EARLE


It was sheep shearin’ time at the Atlanta History Center’s annual “Sheep to Shawl” event held April 9. Above. Scott Fuss shears “Ida Mae,” a Gulf Coast Native Sheep who lives at the Smith Family Farm, located on the AHC grounds. Assisting Fuss is Brett Bannor, animal caretaker for the center. See more photos page 14►

EXCEPTIONAL EDUCATOR Lovett School’s winning bandleader Page 16

“[I’m] sad to see the Braves move out of Atlanta, but excited to see a brand-new stadium and Braves experience.” 23-YEAR-OLD ATLANTA WOMAN RESPONDING TO OUR 1Q SURVEY ON THE BRAVES’ LAST SEASON AT TURNER FIELD

See COMMENTARY on page 10

OUT & ABOUT ‘Monarchs & Margaritas’ Page 18

Thousands of apartments and apartment-renting millennials are coming to Buckhead and the neighborhood should embrace the changes they bring, Buckhead Coalition president Sam Massell says. “These renters…they will be tomorrow’s leaders in Buckhead and we had better be their friends,” Massell told the Buckhead Business Association at its April 7 meeting during his annual “State of the Community” address. “Buckhead will no longer be just a commune of old-money homeowners. It will be a mixture of old money and fresh thinking.” Sam Massell Massell, a former Atlanta mayor and long-time Buckhead booster, said the community will have to deal with the “tremendous impact” of the apartment boom that he estimated will bring 24,000 new residents— a 30 percent population increase—in the next four to five years. “Believe me, they are coming,” Massell said “A positive reaction can ensure the continuation of Buckhead’s pleasant personality, plus its progress and prosperity.” Massell said his biggest concern is that some Buckhead leaders aren’t acknowledging the changes underway. He said that since the apartment construction boom started in 2012, the number of units proposed, under construction or in the rental phase has increased 117 percent. The Buckhead Coalition has counted 48 complexes with 14,953 units, he said. Massell said he is concerned with the character and quality of some of those new buildings, which “won’t look very good in 10 years.” He is also worried about losing small business with neighborhood-oriented businesses, which he wants to address with “affordable retail” set-asides, like policies that require a certain percentage of housSee MASSELL on page 22

2 | Community ■


Community Briefs FO O D TR U CKS HEA D BA C K TO B UC KHEA D

Livable Buckhead says food trucks will return starting April 26 to deliver a bit of variety to Buckhead lunches. Three trucks will appear at Tower Place Park, 3348 Peachtree Road on Tuesdays from 11 a.m. until 2:30 p.m., the nonprofit said in its online newsletter. The trucks will appear through the fall and “tables and field games will be provided,” Livable Buckhead says in its Buckheadlines newsletter. “Livable Buckhead is all about doing things that add some spice to life in this area and provide a sense of community, and food trucks are a perfect fit,” said Denise Starling, executive director of Livable Buckhead. “These events will get people out of their offices and enjoying time with co-workers and friends as they sample food from some of the best trucks in Atlanta.” To get weekly email updates on the food trucks, go to


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The House District 52 race briefly had a third candidate who dropped out within hours of qualifying in an unusual reopened filing period. Graham McDonald and Deborah Silcox remain the contenders to replace retiring Rep. Joe Wilkinson in the May 24 Republican primary. The state Republican Party took the unusual step of reopening qualification on April 6 and 7, apparently because Wilkinson had qualified before dropping his re-election bid and announcing his retirement. Karen F. Beavor, president and CEO at the Georgia Center for Nonprofits, qualified to join the race, but dropped out hours later. “I received a tremendously positive but game-changing phone call last night and, as a result, I’ve decided not to run at this time,” she said in an email, adding that the call was “family personal” and not from the party or a campaign. The District 52 seat covers parts of Buckhead, Sandy Springs and northwest Atlanta.

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APR. 15 - APR. 28, 2016

Community | 3

Wilkinson works to bring a war dog to the silver screen BY JOHN RUCH

Wilkinson said he met Labyrinth executives through his work with the National Museum of the Mighty Eighth Air Force When Republican Rep. Joe Wilkinson near Savannah. dropped his re-election bid last month, he “I’m an amateur military historian,” said his retirement plans included worksaid Wilkinson, adding that he has helped ing on an animated movie about a heroic several World War II veterans edit their World War I military dog named Sergeant memoirs. Stubby. Labyrinth’s films include the World War Wilkinson is presiII series “The American dent of Fun Academy Road to Victory” that Motion Pictures, the aired on PBS. Wilkinfilm company makson said he did some ing “Sgt. Stubby: An marketing and distriAmerican Hero,” he bution work for Labysaid in a recent interrinth, then became inview. And Fun Acadevolved in their Sergeant my’s parent company, Stubby project, an aniIreland-based milimated film. tary documentary Wilkinson said he maker Labyrinth Mewas made president dia, will open a new of Fun Academy MoSPECIAL office in Buckhead as tion Pictures, a division Sergeant Stubby in a 1923 photo the film’s “command of Labyrinth created published by Wikipedia. center,” said Labyto make the Sergeant rinth spokesperson Stubby movie. “They Jordan Beck. had the talent” on the “Growing up, who creative side, Wilkinson didn’t want to be Walt said. “Labyrinth was saying Disney?” said Wilkinthey needed someone who son, adding that the work could basically coordinate, matches his love of millead meetings and manage itary history and of the this project. It fits my skill adoption of homeless set. I couldn’t tell you much dogs. (He successfully led about [film] production, a legislative effort this but I know how to manage. year to name the “adoptIt’s something I just said I’d able dog” as Georgia’s love to do.” state dog.) Wilkinson is a retired According to the “Sgt. Coca-Cola executive and Joe Wilkinson Stubby” website, the film held commands in the U.S. will be directed by Dan Navy Reserve. St. Pierre, an animator on He said “Sgt. Stubby” is still in the fisuch Disney films as “The Lion King” and nancing stage. While various crew mem“The Little Mermaid,” and scored by Patbers may work in other cities and counrick Doyle of “Thor” and “Cinderella.” tries, the production will be coordinated by “If you Google ‘Sergeant Stubby,’ you’re Wilkinson in Atlanta, Beck said. going to be amazed,” said Wilkinson. “We would have loved to do [the entire Stubby was a stray adopted by soldiers film] in Georgia, of course,” said Wilkinson. training at Yale University during World But Fun Academy will open an Atlanta ofWar I and was smuggled onto the front fice on Northside Parkway near North Atlines. lanta High School. Beck said the office will “He caught a German spy. He, because serve “Sgt. Stubby” for now and possibly of his great sense of smell, could sense gas other Labyrinth productions in the future. attacks ahead of time,” said Wilkinson. The “We are looking forward to working dog also reputedly won over skeptical comwith [Wilkinson] as we develop Fun Acadmanding officers because “they had taught emy projects in Georgia, utilizing the growhim how to salute.” ing infrastructure and talent pool offered “This is all true. It’s really neat,” Wilkinhere to create educational and entertainson said. ing stories with an international appeal,” Bedecked with medals, Stubby became Beck said. a nationally known mascot of the war efThe producers are hoping “Sgt. Stubby” fort. “When Stubby died in 1926, he was will get a distribution deal and be released stuffed and put into the Smithsonian,” in 2018, according to the film’s website. Wilkinson said. The Smithsonian’s NaWilkinson said it will be worth the wait. tional Museum of American History web“It’s very much like [Steven Spielberg’s site features a page about its exhibit of the 2011 film] ‘War Horse,’ but not as intense stuffed war dog. and dark,” he said.


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4 | Community ■

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An office building and a five-deck parking garage on Lake Hearn Drive in Sandy Springs soon will be demolished for the I-285/Ga. 400 interchange project, and the state is moving quickly to tear down one and acquire the other. The construction contract for the highway project was officially approved by the state April 8. North Perimeter Contractors is creating the final design now, according to the state Department of Transportation, and construction will start by early next year and last into 2020. GDOT recently bought a two-story office building at Lake Hearn and PeachtreeDunwoody Road, and “the building is being staked and flagged for demolition in the next couple of weeks,” according to GDOT spokesperson Anna-lysce Baker. She could not give a specific demolition schedule. For 15 years, the building was the headquarters of Morrison Healthcare, a national food and nutrition services company serving hospitals, including Pill Hill’s Northside and Children’s Healthcare at Scottish Rite. Last month, the company moved out of the building and into a new headquarters at 400 Northridge Road in Sandy Springs, according to Tom Hughes, Morrison’s vice

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president of communications. Baker would not say what GDOT paid for the building, but Hughes said the company was satisfied with the sale. Meanwhile, GDOT is in negotiations to purchase the large parking deck within the Pavilion at Lake Hearn office park at 1150 Lake Hearn Drive. GDOT aims to acquire the garage by the end of this year, Baker said, but she would not say who GDOT is negotiating with and would not comment on the state of negotiations. Property records show the owner as Caram Properties LLC, whose registered agent with the state is the law firm Cohen, Pollock, Merlin & Small. The law firm did not respond to questions about the negotiations. The office building and the parking garage are the only two privately owned structures slated to be demolished for the I-285/Ga. 400 project, Baker said. One state-owned structure appears to be in the project’s path on the official right of way map: a GDOT salt barn in the southeast corner of the I-285 and Roswell Road interchange in Sandy Springs. “GDOT constructed [salt barns] in strategic places in order to have readily available salt and gravel during winter weather events,” Baker said. “If the salt barn is impacted by the project, an alternate site will be identified.”

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APR. 15 - APR. 28, 2016

Community | 5

Ga. 400




This five-level parking deck will be demolished for the 285/400 interchange project.

GDOT purchased this office building on Lake Hearn Drive, soon to be demolished. This photo illustration shows the location of the Sandy Springs buildings to be demolsihed for the I-284/Ga. 400 reconstruction project.

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6 | Faith ■


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The first room visitors encounter inside the new Church of Scientology in Sandy Springs is not a chapel or shrine. It’s a museum-like series of displays and videos about the religion’s basic beliefs and causes. Visitors to the Public Information Center, which opened April 3, can try out an e-meter—the unique electronic device Scientologists use in counseling members—and grab a snack in a small café. This center is part of the Georgia chapter’s new status as one of Scientology’s “Ideal Churches” or “Ideal Organizations.” As

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Scientology spokesperson Erin Banks put it during a recent building tour, that means “a church that can serve our parishioners, but not only Scientologists, [and] actually be a home for the entire community.” Meeting rooms are available for community groups, and the church will join with other organizations on such efforts as anti-drug programs. That work is one reason why the church is occupying such a huge building—50,000 square feet and four stories—at Roswell Road and Glenridge Drive. “This is really a home for all of those outreach programs,” Banks said. The display room also lets the local



APR. 15 - APR. 28, 2016

Faith| 7

church indirectly reroom is available for New Location spond to the controverpublic use, as are semiThe new Church of Scientology, losies that have dogged nar rooms with audiocated at 5395 Roswell Road, is open Scientology since the visual equipment. to the general public on weekdays 1970s, when several of A museum-style rec9 a.m. to 10 p.m. and on weekends 9 its top leaders—none reation of Hubbard’s ofa.m. to 6 p.m. For information about the church or using its community of whom remain in office is a special feature. spaces, call 770-394-4414, email atfice—were imprisoned Banks said the office is or see scienin relation to a plan to a “symbol of respect” for infiltrate various U.S. Hubbard. government agencies. The tour included The 1995 death, from disputed causes, of a private auditing room where Scientola Scientology member under the care of a ogists undergo a kind of counseling via church organization in Florida has sparked the e-meter—one of the religion’s core regular protests, including a 2008 march practices in self-improvement. With its outside the local chapter’s former buildgauge and metal grips, the e-meter looks ing in Dunwoody. The recent documentasomething like an old-fashioned radio. ry film “Going Clear” repeated many alleScientologists believe the e-meter “meagations that Scientology is abusive of some sures mental stress” with tiny, unnoticemembers and harasses its critics. able electric charges and aids the “auditScientology officials say such claims ing” process, Banks said. are false and that the church is a target Another feature is the “purification cenof persecution. ter,” a kind of health spa with a sauna, large

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The Church of Scientology, originally located in Buckhead, has moved to Sandy Springs.

“Anyone that actually comes to the church finds out for themselves that all that is hogwash,” said Deb MacKay, the local church’s community affairs director. Visitors discover that “98 percent of what they heard or read on the Internet was perpetrated by some person who had an ax to grind” or the result of media manipulation, she said. “My response to that is come and find out for yourself,” MacKay added. “It’s not frightening. It’s very welcoming. There are no secrets here. People are happy.” The tour covered much of the sprawling brick building, a former real estate office that is much larger than the Georgia chapter’s previous locations. The chapter was founded in the 1970s on Piedmont Road in Buckhead, McKay said, before moving to Dunwoody and, more recently, Doraville. The move to Sandy Springs took over 10 years of fundraising and a freedom-of-religion lawsuit against a city zoning decision. The Roswell Road location was big enough for an “Ideal Church,” MacKay said, and “the church has historically been in this part of town, so everybody kind of wanted to stay in the community that they knew.” The interior is brightly lit with modern styling and quotes from Scientology founder L. Ron Hubbard decorating many walls. A modest chapel is in the basement and one wing houses a bookstore devoted to Hubbard’s many writings. A conference

dispensers of vitamin pills and treadmills facing a mural of the Atlanta skyline and Georgia peaches. Scientologists believe that toxins built up in the body can be removed in the center. The Public Information Center highlights Scientology’s programs about human rights, which the Georgia chapter ties into Atlanta’s Civil Rights history. MacKay said a Scientology-produced human rights video plays in Atlanta’s National Center for Civil and Human Rights—confirmed by the Center—and that she recently spoke at a local high school about human rights for a class project on the death penalty. A private April 2 grand opening featured leaders of several nonprofits the Georgia chapter works with, as well as state Sen. Donzella James (D-Atlanta), who has frequently praised Scientology programs, though MacKay said she is not a church member. Video of the opening provided by the church shows James praising Hubbard as “before his time, during his time and…still most relevant at this time.” David Miscavige, the current leader of Scientology, also evoked Civil Rights at the opening, calling the new church the base of “Scientology for a new American South,” according to a press release. He called Atlanta “a city of grace and magic, a city where even oaks and magnolias possess souls; and a city of remembrance that also foretells of the future.”

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8 | Commentary ■





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Bill Browning got the of the Sons of Union Veteridea after he was among ans of the Civil War. Genthe enemy. Well, not exactly eral Garrard, a Union cavthe enemy. But, at the very alryman, fought under least, some folks who could Sherman in the Atlanta have been his enemies 150 campaign and oversaw the years ago. burning of Roswell’s textile Browning, a native son mills, which provided much of Brooklyn, N.Y., a forof the fortune that built the mer bookseller and bankhouse where Browning er and a fan of U.S. history, works and his group holds now lives in Dunwoody. He its regular meetings. works at Barrington Hall, Browning’s camp is the white-columned mansmall. He hopes someday to sion in downtown Roswell. get up to 35 members. Only A few years back, he said, Managing Editor about eight or so are memsome friends who were fel- bers now, and two of them low Civil War buffs asked have returned to Wisconhim to join them in the Civsin. Still, he soldiers on. Peril War heritage group known as the Sons of haps someday, he said, his camp can add a Confederate Veterans. few monuments to the past. And he hopes “I said, ‘I don’t have the ancestry,’” the the group someday can give talks in schools 63-year-old recalled one recent morning in about the Civil War and what caused it. Perthe renovated barn behind Barrington Hall haps they could even debate members of where his office is located. the Sons of Confederate Veterans. That means he didn’t have any anHe thinks the conversation is critical. cestors who fought for the South during “I get really upset with people who say

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Bill Browning walks the grounds of Barrington Hall in Roswell.

the Civil War, a requirement to be a fullfledged member of the Sons of Confederate Veterans, according to the group’s webpage, which says the organization wants to preserve “the history and legacy of these heroes so that future generations can understand the motives that animated the Southern Cause.” Then again, Browning said he doesn’t know that any of his ancestors fought for the North, either. It turns out that wasn’t a bar to being a member of the group known as the Sons of Union Veterans, he said. That group calls itself a fraternal organization “dedicated to preserving the history and legacy of heroes who fought and worked to save the Union.” He signed up. Browning now is camp commander of the Roswell-based chapter, which he said is the fourth and newest camp in metro Atlanta. On April 30, the group plans to hold a wine-tasting fundraiser, its first. Admission to the event, to be held at Vino 100 in Alpharetta, is $10. Browning heads what is officially known as the Kenner Garrard Camp # 4

we don’t need to talk about the Civil War any more. We do,” he said. “I just think it’s important to know who we are. The decisions we make have to be based on who we were. I know this is old and hackneyed to say, but we don’t go forward without looking backward... “Pretending it didn’t exist is not the way to go forward. Moving forward builds on where we were in the past.” Browning isn’t a Civil War re-enactor. But he knows a few. One recent morning, Eric Peterson, who helped set up the first local camps of the Sons of Union Veterans, dropped by Barrington Hall in full Union uniform. Peterson said he was dressed as Gen. George H. Thomas of Virginia, another officer involved in the Atlanta campaign. Why does he do it? “To keep the sacrifices of union soldiers alive,” he said. Browning says he doesn’t want to refight the war, but to remember it. “There’s no animosity, not in my camp,” Browning said. “I’m just asking for open discussions. I don’t feel like I’m fighting against the tide.”

APR. 15 - APR. 28, 2016

Commentary | 9

Does this phone make my fingers look fat? I think I’m in pretty good shape. I walk daily, I work out regularly, I do situps and push-ups and squats and lunges; I’ve advanced to the half-lord of the fishes pose in my yoga class. But I’ve become self-conscious about a part of my body that never bothered me before. And I’m beginning to wonder: Does this phone make my fingers look fat? I’m getting a bit sensitive about it because I’ve been making fat-finger calls since I got it. It’s not that hard to do. I’ll go to call one person on my favorites list and because she’s sandwiched between two other people on a smooth and glossy screen, I’ll hit the wrong favorite. It’s getting to be a problem, especially when I fat-finger call someone who is out of the country. My old phone never did that. It fit me just fine. It was like a well-worn, relaxed-fit pair of jeans; it was comfy and roomy and it made me feel good about myself and about the size of my text fingers. It had plenty of wiggle room. It was a 10-year-old Nokia with a smashed-in keyboard, but that had its advantages. For one thing, I could text with my thumbnail. That old-timey keyboard allowed for precision hits. I got a skinny new phone a few years ago, but it’s just too tight. Worse, it has a virtual keyboard that needs a fleshy finger to place a call. This updated, yet unforgiving, keyboard wants fleshy, but not TOO fleshy—it wants a perfectly shaped, size-four text finger. At least it has gotten accustomed to my digital heft, and it knows that when I type Vsn hou fi ? I mean Can you go? I’m learning, too—I’ve started texting the wrong word so it will self-correct to the right word, because that’s faster than trying to hit all right letters. I never used to have a problem with my fingers overlapping onto another contact or another letter, but now they’re spreading all over the keyboard. I feel like my fingers have developed muffin top. It’s really unnerving. I know, I know. I need to upsize to the “boyfriend-fit” version of a smart-


Robin’s Nest Robin Conte

Robin Conte is a writer and mother of four who lives in Dunwoody. She can be contacted at

phone, the one that’s designed for fullfigured fingers. But I can’t bear to part with this tiny little number that fits so perfectly into the back pocket of my jeans and the side pouch of my purse. So I’m going to take matters into my own hands—literally. I’m going to lose that finger flab! I’ve decided to put my digits through a good workout every day. I want the fingers of a 20-year-old. I found a set of easy finger exercises guaranteed to slim those digits down to stylus shape. I’ll warm them up with a series of stretches, then move to the toning and tightening. I’ll run them through a strenuous game of finger soccer for the aerobic component of the program, and then it’ll be time for the cool down. And while I FLEX two three four, STRETCH two three four, LIFT two three four, BEND two three four, please tell me that it’s not’s my phone.

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10 | Commentary

Reporter Newspapers 

Our mission is to provide our readers with fresh and engaging information about life in their communities. Published by Springs Publishing LLC 6065 Roswell Road, Suite 225 Sandy Springs, GA 30328 Phone: 404-917-2200 • Fax: 404-917-2201 Brookhaven Reporter | Buckhead Reporter Dunwoody Reporter | Sandy Springs Reporter Atlanta INtown ■

Community Survey Question: Do you plan to take in a baseball game at Turner Field before the Atlanta Braves move to their new stadium in Cobb County? Total Respondents (200)

40 & OVER 21%

NO 21% MAYBE 15%

YES 65%


Managing Editor Joe Earle Associate Editor: John Ruch Intown Editor: Collin Kelley


29 & YOUNGER 39%

30-39 41%

Household Income

Founder & Publisher Steve Levene Editorial


Yes. I want to see at least one more game in the stadium where the Braves have won so many. 129 (65%) Maybe. It depends on how the team does this season. 30 (15%)

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$75$100K 16.5%

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Copy Editor: Helen Kelley Creative and Production Creative Director: Rico Figliolini Graphic Designer: Harry J. Pinkney Jr. Advertising Director of Sales Development Amy Arno Sales Executives Jeff Kremer Janet Porter Jim Speakman Office Manager Deborah Davis

Take me out to the ball game! And let’s go watch at least one more game before the Braves leave Turner Field for the suburbs. That’s what respondents to our most recent 1Q survey say. Nearly two-thirds of the 200 respondents said they plan to take in at least one more game at The Ted, the downtown Atlanta ball field the Braves have called home for two decades. The Braves plan to move to a new state-of-the-art stadium and development in Cobb County to start the 2017 season. Another 15 percent of the respondents to the cellphone-based survey of adults across the communities served by Reporter Newspapers and Atlanta INtown said they may go see a Braves game this season. Only 21 percent said they would not. “[I’m] sad to see the Braves move out of Atlanta,” said a 23-year-old Atlanta woman, “but excited to see a brand-new stadium and Braves experience.” Not everyone was so eager to see the start of suburban baseball. Some fretted about traffic. Others questioned the team’s decision to leave the central city, asking whether it still would be the “Atlanta” Braves. “I hate it. I much prefer Turner Field,” a 27-year-old Atlanta man said.


“It’s always hard letting go, but new memories will be made at the new stadium.” 36-year-old Brookhaven woman “I’m excited that it’ll be a brand-new stadium. I hope it doesn’t cause traffic nightmares and I hope the stadium will spark new development in the area where people can ... hang out around the stadium.” 25-year-old Buckhead man “It will create more traffic.” 26-year-old Sandy Springs man “Financially, it makes sense. But the perception is it’s a racist move and antiAtlanta. Good luck with millennials! 30-year-old Atlanta man “I think they should drop the city of Atlanta from the name. The ‘Marietta Braves’ or ‘Cobb County Braves’ sounds more honest.” 31-year-old Brookhaven man

1Q is an Atlanta-based startup that has developed a technology which sends questions and surveys to a cellphone via app or text message from businesses and organizations across the country. Respondents are paid 50 cents per answer, through PayPal, for sharing their opinions. Payments may also be donated directly to charity. Sign up to be included in our local community polls at or by texting REPORTER to 86312.

Robin Conte, Phil Mosier, Martha Nodar

Free Home Delivery 60,000 copies of Reporter Newspapers are delivered by carriers to homes in ZIP codes 30305, 30319, 30326, 30327, 30328, 30338, 30342 and 30350 and to more than 500 business/retail locations. For locations, check “Where To Find Us” at For delivery requests, please email

© 2016 with all rights reserved Publisher reserves the right to refuse editorial or advertising for any reason. Publisher assumes no responsibility for information contained in advertising. Any opinions expressed in print or online do not necessarily represent the views of Reporter Newspapers or Springs Publishing, LLC.

On The Record

Read these articles from our other editions online at

“It gave the community and the city its name. We’re not trying to put up a big fountain. [But] we do want people to be able to see the water.” Carol Thompson, executive director of Heritage Sandy Springs, on the nonprofit’s plans to better show off the city’s namesake springs “I thought we should name it after Dominique Wilkins’ signature dunk.” Brookhaven Mayor John Ernst on “Operation Windmill Dunk,” the nickname used for a plan to bring a $50 million Atlanta Hawks practice facility to the city. Wilkins played a key role in the team’s success in the 1980s and was known as one of the best dunkers in the NBA “This thing actually moved a lot faster than we thought.” Sandy Springs Police Chief Ken DeSimone on a pilot program allowing Atlanta police to install “Operation Shield” surveillance cameras in Sandy Springs

Congratulations, John! Reporter Newspapers Associate Editor John Ruch has been named a finalist for a 2016 Award of Excellence from the Atlanta Press Club in the “Print/OnlineJohn Ruch Nondaily” category. Associate Editor Winners of the club’s annual awards are to be announced at a Press Club reception on April 18.

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APR. 15 - APR. 28, 2016

Community | 11

Buford Highway ‘bus crawl’ to ride MARTA to food stops BY JOHN RUCH

If you’d like to sample Buford Highway’s culinary delights with a side of public transit advocacy, the “39 Ride and Dine” on April 27 is for you. The ticketed “bus crawl” of several of Buford Highway’s diverse restaurants from Doraville to Brookhaven is a joint effort of the We Love BuHi community organization and the MARTA Army transit advocacy group. Groups of attendees will ride MARTA’s Route 39 bus with a team leader and make tasting stops at several restaurants before ending the evening at a Brookhaven lounge. Along the way, they’ll hear from such experts as MARTA transit-oriented development chief Amanda Rhein and Sally Flocks of the pedestrian advocacy group PEDS. The new bus crawl is similar to We Love BuHi’s “Bikes & Bites” bicycle tours of Buford, whose latest installment was held earlier this month. Marian Liou of We Love BuHi said the bus crawl team-up with MARTA Army is similarly about “trying to get people to think about Buford Highway in different ways.”



“How can we use what’s best about Buford Highway and about MARTA and begin a conversation about its greater challenges?” Liou asked. “How can we get more people on Buford Highway to think about it from a non-car-centric angle? How do we make Buford Highway more livable and lovable?” MARTA Army is an independent organization, but MARTA is pleased with the event, said Lyle Harris, a spokesperson for the transit agency. “Although we’re not directly involved in planning or staging the event, we support the activities of the MARTA Army to encourage greater transit ridership and to help knit our community together,” he said. The 39 Ride and Dine will begin Wed., April 27 at 6 p.m., with successive groups of riders leaving every 12 minutes from the Doraville MARTA Station. Tickets are $15 and include the foodtastings and event admission, but not MARTA fares. Attendees are encouraged to buy a MARTA day pass good for unlimited rides. For more tickets and information, see

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Emory Healthcare has purchased 60 acres of the Executive Park office park, to be made into a sports medicine campus and Atlanta Hawks training facility.


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Three major medical center campus expansions across the north Perimeter area were announced in recent weeks as part of an ongoing regional boom. Northside Hospital is planning a renovation of its Pill Hill campus. Buckhead’s Piedmont Hospital will develop a “major project” as part of a heart center expansion. And Emory Healthcare announced a 60-acre sports medicine campus and Atlanta Hawks training facility in Brookhaven. Northside would not give details of its plans for its campus at Johnson Ferry and Peachtree-Dunwoody roads in Sandy Springs, but did say the plans are big. In December, the hospital received state approval for a 53-bed expansion in a “new patient tower,” boosting the total inpatient beds to 590, said Northside spokesperson Katherine Watson. And the hospital is preparing to submit an application to the state for a “major campus renovation and reconfiguration project,” she said. Northside’s Pill Hill neighbor, Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta at Scottish Rite, has a 57-bed expansion project in the zoning review process. Piedmont Hospital plans to develop a “major project” at its campus at Peachtree and Collier roads after receiving a $75 million gift from the Marcus Foundation to ex-

pand its Piedmont Heart Institute, according to Georgia Health News. The vision is to create a “destination” heart program that will be a national draw, like the Cleveland Clinic in Ohio, and ensure that “no Georgian has to leave Georgia for heart and vascular care,” Kevin Brown, Piedmont president and CEO, told GHN. In Brookhaven, a major new medical area is springing up around the North Druid Hills Road and I-85 interchange. Children’s Healthcare is already undertaking a major expansion of its facility there, with most of the details yet to be revealed. On April 5, Emory made the surprise announcement that it had bought 60 acres of the Executive Park office park and will turn it into the new home of Emory’s Sports Medicine Center. The centerpiece of the site is a new training facility for the Atlanta Hawks pro basketball team. “Emory Healthcare has built outstanding orthopedics services over the past decade, and we are excited to continue to grow this area and work closely with the Atlanta Hawks,” said Dr. Jonathan S. Lewin, the president, CEO and board chair of Emory Healthcare in a press release. “Delivering on-site care not only will enable us to provide faster care to Hawks players, but also will enhance our ability to conduct sports performance research and translate what we learn to all athletes both professional and recreational.”

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Left to right, Rep. Taylor Bennett, City Council members Bates Mattison and Linley Jones, City Manager Gary Yandura, Mayor John Ernst and Council member John Park celebrate the Hawks plan to open a training facility during a press conference on April 5.


APR. 15 - APR. 28, 2016

Community | 13

Parents withdraw students after BIA announces Norcross location BY DYANA BAGBY

Six parents withdrew their children from Brookhaven’s new charter school after learning the school would be located in Norcross, Brookhaven Innovation Academy’s executive director says. “The board extensively focused on trying to find a location in Brookhaven,” said BIA Executive Director Bates Mattison, who also holds a seat on Brookhaven City Council. “The reality is BIA spent months looking for a location in the city and for one reason or another, the board couldn’t find anything. It was open in Norcross, or delay opening the school a year.” The state-approved charter school, scheduled to open this year, has a one-year lease with the Norcross location and could stay up to three years there as BIA continues to look for a long-term location, Mattison said. After learning BIA was going to be located in Norcross, a local mother immediately withdrew her child from the new state charter school. BIA’s board of directors looked at between 50 to 60 prospective sites in Brookhaven, the city of Atlanta, Chamblee, Doraville, Peachtree Corners, unincorporated DeKalb and Norcross, Mattison said. Mattison appeared at one point to lay blame for the school’s having to locate in Gwinnett County on city officials, after the city backed out of purchasing the stateowned Skyland Center building on Skyland Drive. In an April 6 email to a parent, Mattison stated, “If you live in the city of Brookhaven, I would encourage you to express your interest to see BIA in the city to your elected officials.” He then went on to state that if BIA had known the city was not going to purchase the Skyland Center building, the school could have bought it directly from the state. Skyland, formerly a school, currently houses metro Atlanta’s Vital Records office and other state offices. “Two years ago, I found the building, Skyland Elementary, as a very good potential location for BIA. The city chose not to purchase the building. If we had known that the city was not going to buy the building, BIA could have purchased the property directly from the state of Georgia,” Mattison stated in the email. The city did initially approve on Dec. 15 issuing up $3.3 million in revenue bonds to purchase the Skyland Center building, but reversed its decision on Dec. 23 after concerns were raised about Councilmember Joe Gebbia serving on the school’s board of directors and on the council. Gebbia resigned from BIA’s board. An independent legal review in December found no ethical conflicts with MattiBH


Social and emotional intelligence may be the most important determinant of a child’s future success.

son serving on the council and as executive director of BIA. “I believe the city has a responsibility to its residents to help provide good school options – which is something BIA can offer. Leadership of BIA met with the city of Brookhaven on multiple occasions to attempt to find a solution. Unfortunately, the city of Brookhaven showed no interest in assisting BIA. I hope that if enough Brookhaven citizens express interest in having this school here, the city will change their position,” Mattison stated in the email to the parent. Mayor John Ernst said the city is willing to help the school, but said the two are separate entities. “And my understanding is that BIA said Skyland was not viable because the state couldn’t move out on time,” he said. BIA officials told the council in December they needed to have possession of the building and property by February to be able to open in August; the state’s offices wouldn’t be out before July, so BIA was forced to look elsewhere. BIA is not a government agency, so would not be able to buy the state-owned building without bidding on it, should the state decide to sell, Ernst said.

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Education | 15

APR. 15 - APR. 28, 2016 ■

Middle school students learn to create with hot metal BY JOE EARLE

Crawford is used to examining bent metal. He’s a blacksmith. The 46-yearold, art-school-trained smith makes his Andrew Crawford liked what he saw. living by heating metal and pounding The steel bar had a squiggle in its midit into new things. Soon, this bar with dle. the squiggle in the middle will be part “It’s an E!” Crawford said, turning the of a bench Crawford plans to make for bar this way and that to get a look at the Springmont, a Montessori school in curves. “A magic E! ... And if you turn it Sandy Springs. sideways, it’s a W!” The twists had been added by Springmont student Adem Wijewickrema, one of five middle school students Crawford was teaching one recent morning how to heat and pound and twist flat steel bars into new shapes. Crawford’s 11-year-old son, Edward, an elementary school student at Springmont, joined the class that took place in a Springmont parking lot where students and teacher gathered around a flatbed truck fitted with a red-hot, propane-powered forge. Crawford volunteered to teach Springmont’s middle-school students how to work with metal in classes planned over four Mondays. His first class featured videos PHOTOS BY JOE EARLE and a chance to make At top, blacksmith Andrew Crawford, center, shows Springmont student Oliver Schoeust, left, how to twist shapes out of metal by a hot metal bar as Crawford’s son, Edward, watches. bending wire. For the At bottom left, Parker Hollosi hammers hot metal. second class, he took At bottom right, Edward Crawford, right, twists a metal bar as Clayton Sinclair, lends a hand. his students straight

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to the forge. Fitted with safety glasses and thick gloves, they took hammer and tongs to hot metal to create twists and points and curves and, well, E’s and W’s from steel. “This is the coolest thing!” Springmont art teacher Theresa Dean said. “What’s not to like about fire? It’s just great.” Students seemed to agree. “This is pretty fun,” student Christian Lubsey said. “I like it,” student Oliver Schouest

said. “I like the excitement of it.” Crawford, who started his Atlanta blacksmith shop in 1993, argues the class teaches his students more than simply how to pound hot metal. “It’s good experience for the kids, just for learning how to work together,” he said. “It’s a really good way for kids to learn skills and planning, looking ahead, visualizing a process. It’s taught me a lot of lessons in my life.”

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16 | Education ■




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Retiring band teacher Stutz Wimmer leaves a legacy of excellence at The Lovett School.

Editor’s note: Through our new “Exceptional Educator” series, Reporter Newspapers is showcasing the work of some of the outstanding teachers and officials at our local schools. If you would like recommend an Exceptional Educator, please email

Stutz Wimmer

teaches band and jazz band at The Lovett School. He’s taught at Lovett since 1987, and began teaching seven years earlier. He plans to retire at the end of this year. Under his direction, Lovett’s jazz bands have competed successfully in national competitions. In March, Lovett’s Ellington Jazz Ensemble placed third among a dozen bands from across the country selected to compete at the Swing Central Jazz Competition in Savannah, the school said. “He’s been such a huge influence on the kids,” said Jen Sarginson, associate director of communications at Lovett. “He’s just a passionate teacher and a very talented musician himself.” Q: What attracted you to teaching at first? A: As an undergrad/grad college student I dabbled in it some, working with local high school students on sort of a one-toone basis, and discovered I was pretty good at it (though, in my mind, I was a player first). In truth, grade schools had been rough on me. By the time I’d graduated from high school I had become about as “disengaged” from school as one can be. That said, I had some wonderful, inspiring teachers/mentors in college. And the band director under whom I student taught was among the most successful folks in the region. In hindsight, they were some of the best role models one could have had. I was hooked. Q: Has the appeal changed? A: It hasn’t! Honestly, as I look toward retirement in just a few weeks, I truly feel that I’ve never had to really “work” for a living. Teaching is such a kick. There’s noth-

ing more rewarding than to help young people get excited about the thing you are so excited by personally. Music must be the easiest subject of all to teach when it comes to getting kids to fall in lock-step. Q: What keeps you going year after year? A: I’ve never really seriously thought about doing anything else. I do love the challenge, especially as you see a group continue to progress as they grow older. Many of my students started working with me as sixth graders, some even earlier. By the time they graduate (we’re graduating 13 students this year), we all understand the program and each other. It’s a very personal and gratifying thing. I can count on one hand the number of days in 37 years when I wasn’t eager to get back to school. And the Lovett School is probably as good a place to work as any place can be. It’s an amazingly supportive family of like-minded people, guided by some of the brightest and capable folks I’ve ever encountered. Q: What do you think makes a great teacher? A: That, of course, differs from teacher to teacher. For me, an effective teacher has to be passionate, committed and deeply knowledgeable about the subject. Kids can see right through a teacher who lacks sincerity or skill. They “get it” so fast! If you love the subject, as I do, and the enthusiasm for it spews out of you like I’m told it does in my case, you can’t help but inspire most of the students. Tenacity is also key. I’ve never been much of one to accept “no” for an answer. (It’s gotten me in a pickle on more than one occasion!) Fortunately, Lovett has been a Godsend for me in that regard, too. The administration has supported pretty much every out-of-the-box idea I’ve ever presented. To be honest, I’m a bit of an iconoclast by nature. Same-old, same-old doesn’t work very well for me. It’s important that the kids find relevance in the work they

Education | 17

APR. 15 - APR. 28, 2016 ■ are asked to do. That’s where my own high school education ran off the rails. Because of that, I’ve taken great care in keeping that from happening to the kids in my charge. You also have to be empathetic to be an effective teacher/coach. It totally can’t be about your ego, though ego does naturally play a role. It’s mostly about the kids and their families. It’s really hard to be a kid these days and even harder to be a parent. Positive outcomes require lots of personal attention, interaction and empathy to negotiate the worst of times. But if you care, the kids sense that. Parents, too. Word gets around pretty fast regarding whether you’re ally or adversary. I can’t imagine being a teacher without liking/believing in the families you teach (though I’ve known some “teachers” who don’t). Finally, you have to be willing to put in extra time. If you want a gig that’s 40 hours a week, teaching is not for you. My wife Carla is an amazingly patient and supportive woman. I could not have done this without her support. How lucky am I? Q: What do you want to see in your students? A: I want to see them discover the value and depth of music that may not at first be familiar to them. In my case, as a jazz enthusiast, most of my students are less familiar with the history and art form that is expressed through jazz music. It’s a beautiful thing to have a student develop a deeply held passion to learn to play well and be committed to working for years in order to play at the highest of levels. Q: How do you engage your students? A: As described above. The music mostly does it -- that, coupled to some degree with my own enthusiasm for it. The combination pretty much closes the sale. It’s easy to engage the students. Really easy. Q: Do you have a project or special program you use year after year? Why do you keep going back to it? A: Yes! Lovett students are generally motivated/driven by goals and outcomes. Nothing “jazzes” them more than a good challenge, provided they are interested in the subject. I’ve never been one to accept mediocre music-making either. Can’t stand the sound of it! I’ve always held a belief that students, given proper instruction and

lofty goals, are capable of rising to a nearprofessional level by senior year. Toward that end, I’ve involved my students in two particular national competitions that we take a shot at most years. The Essentially Ellington High School Jazz Festival and Competition, sponsored by Jazz at Lincoln Center (and Wynton Marsalis) is one of them. The Savannah Music Festival’s Swing Central High School Jazz Band competition is the other. Both are Super Bowllike events. Bands from all over the U.S. enter via recording. The top 15 or 12 bands, respectively, are selected from among hundreds of entries and invited to attend the finals contests in New York or Savannah. Lovett has been a finalist at the Essentially Ellington festival four times, and Swing Central five times, I believe. We weren’t chosen as a top finalist for Essentially Ellington this year, but were for Swing Central. We placed third overall in Savannah, the first time we’ve ever placed in the top three there. We also earned a third place finish in New York in the early 2000s. Nothing motivates Lovett/Ellington Band students more than the possibility of long-shot success. Q: Is there a “trick” that works to get students involved? A: No tricks. The music, camaraderie and now, a legacy established by so many years of really wonderful groups, attracts the up-and-comers to the program. I’m most proud of the fact that The Lovett Ellington Band seems to have established a solid reputation for success and quality. It’s fairly self-sustaining at this point. I’m really proud of that. Q: What do you hope your students take away from your class? A: I want them to know what it feels like to perform at the very highest level the art form has to offer. I want them to carry their enthusiasm out of here when they graduate. I want them to share that experience with everyone, and get their own kids involved in music when the time comes. I want them to “get this” like I have. I have little doubt that the students who just returned from Savannah will never forget the experience. You should have heard them play. My, oh my!

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Wednesday, April 27, 11:30 a.m.- 1:30 p.m. Vince, Barbara and Suzanne Dooley speak at the Elaine Clark Center. Grandson Matthew Dooley has cerebral palsy and attended the center in the late ‘90s. Tickets: $175. Includes jewelry silent auction. Proceeds help fund expansion efforts. For more information, email: or call 770-458-3251.The Capital City Club, 53 W. Brookhaven Dr., Brookhaven, 30319.

‘HEARTS WITH HOPE’ Saturday, April 30, 6:30 p.m. The Partnership Against Domestic Violence “Hearts with Hope” Gala features an auction, food, guest speakers, dancing and entertainment. Tickets: $400. Black tie attire. Monies support PADV’s general operating budget, allowing for its free programs and services. The Ritz-Carlton, Buckhead, 3434 Peachtree Rd., Atlanta, 30326. Learn more:

‘BEAUTY AND THE BEAST JR.’ Wednesday, April 20, 7 p.m. Our Lady of the Assumption Catholic School invites all to their spring musical, ‘Beauty and the Beast Jr.’ $5. Doors open at 6:30 p.m. In the school’s gym. Additional shows April 21-23. 1350 Hearst Dr., NE, Atlanta, 30319. Call 404-862-2763 or visit: for details.

‘MONARCHS & MARGARITAS’ Saturday, April 30, 6-9 p.m. Get ready for a whole new “Monarchs & Margaritas” (and Moonshine!) Upscale, casual party in Dunwoody Nature Center’s meadow. Event includes live music, valet parking, signature drinks, whole-roasted pig and corn in shuck, as well as catered menu. Southern chic attire. $75. 5343 Roberts Dr., Dunwoody, 30338. Call 770-394-3322 or visit: for information and tickets. Restoration by Henry Schwartz 404-596-5727

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Saturday, April 30, 7 p.m. Chastain Friends invites all to “A Night With Taurus” at the Chastain Horse Park. Celebrate the zodiac season of Taurus by watching or riding the mechanical bull. Event features live music, whisky tasting, dinner, dancing and silent auction. Benefits Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta. Tickets: $95; $100 after April 18. Visit: to purchase or for details. Call 404-7912798 with questions. 4371 Powers Ferry Rd., NW, Atlanta, 30327.

Saturday, April 23, 1-5 p.m. Opening reception for show and sale features work by Chastain Arts Center instructors and students, including a variety of jewelry, pottery, paintings, prints, scarves, garden art, photographs and more. Free admission. Continues through May 28. 135 West Wieuca Rd., NW, Atlanta, 30342. For further details, go to:

HARRIS JACOBS RUN Sunday, May 1, 8 a.m. It’s time for the 23rd annual Harris Jacobs Dream Run at Marcus Jewish Community Center-Zaban Park. 5K race/ run; 1-mile special needs walk. 2017 Peachtree Road Race qualifier. Chip timing, T-shirts, post-race party. $15-$35. Shuttle service from Georgia Perimeter College. 5342 Tilly Mill Rd., Dunwoody 30338. Register at Questions? Call 678-812-3981 or go to: under “sports.”


Thursday, April 28, 7-9 p.m. Celebrate the arts at Wesleyan School’s 18th annual artist market. Event features fine art, custom-made jewelry, ceramics, photography and more. Food trucks, live entertainment, children’s activities. Continues April 29, 9 a.m.-6 p.m. and April 30, 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Free admission. The community is welcome. 5405 Spalding Dr., Peachtree Corners, 30092. For further information, visit: or email:

APR. 15 - APR. 28, 2016

Out & About | 19

‘TAMING OF THE SHREW’ Friday, April 29, 7 p.m. In this modern text of the Shakespeare classic, the main plot depicts the headstrong, obdurate shrew Katherina and her suitor Petruchio, who uses various psychological torments to “tame” her until she becomes a compliant and obedient bride. $10. Additional shows: April 30, 7 p.m. and May 1, 3 p.m. Dunwoody United Methodist Church, 1548 Mount Vernon Rd., Dunwoody, 30338. Questions? Go to: or call 770-394-0675.

p.m. Join the Georgia Botanical Society and Park Naturalist Jerry Hightower as you travel above rock cliffs, through mature oak-hickory forest and floodplain forest. $3 Daily Park Pass not required if displaying a current Annual Park Pass or an America the Beautiful Pass. Reservations necessary; call 678-538-1200. Chattahoochee River National Recreation Area, 1425 Indian Trail, Sandy Springs, 30327. For details, go to:

Among the fascinating people who

live and work at Canterbury Court:



Mattie Hickey-Middleton


Exercise Specialist since 2005

Tuesday, April 19, 2:15-5:45 p.m. A two-day AARP defensive driving class for adults as well as teens aged 15 and up. Guidebook: $15 for members; $20 non-members, and required for certificate. Class continues on April 20 and participants must attend both. Registration required by calling 404-851-6157. Sandy Springs Branch Library, 395 Mount Vernon Highway, Sandy Springs, 30328. Email: comments@ for details.

Tuesday, April 26, 6-8 p.m. This workshop, particularly aimed at but not limited to women, focuses on budgeting and investment advice. Suitable for adults and elders. Open to all. Northside Branch Library, in the Multi-Purpose Room, 3295 Northside Parkway, NW, Atlanta, 30327. Email: or call 404-814-3508 with questions.



Tuesday, April 19, 6:30-7:45 p.m. Learn how to stage an effective job search using a variety of methods. For adults. Class limited to 15 participants. Free and open to the public. Call 404-848-7140 or swing by the Brookhaven Branch Library to register or for additional information. 1242 N. Druid Hills Rd., Brookhaven, 30319.

Tuesday, April 26, 6:30-7:45 p.m. Learn how to create a resumé that can be tailored to the jobs you are applying for. Class limited to 15 participants. For adult audiences. Free and open to the public. Visit the Brookhaven Branch Library to register or call 404-848-7140. 1242 N. Druid Hills Rd., Brookhaven, 30319.



Wednesday, April 20, 2-3 p.m. Have fun while you color your stress away. Supplies and coloring sheets provided. Free. All are welcome. Open to the first 20 participants. For adults 18 and over. Call 770512-4640 or visit the Dunwoody Branch Library to sign up. 5339 Chamblee-Dunwoody Rd., Dunwoody, 30338.

Wednesday, April 27, 4-5 p.m. Find out about the common forms of identity theft and how to protect yourself, what to do if you suspect you are a victim and how to prepare in advance. For adults. Free. Open to the community. Drop by the Brookhaven Branch Library to sign up or call 404-848-7140. 1242 N. Druid Hills Rd., Brookhaven, 30319.


MENTAL HEALTH Saturday, April 23, 10 a.m.-2 p.m. The National Alliance for Mental Health Northside Atlanta holds its 2016 Mental Health Fair to answer questions about services and advocacy for individuals suffering from mental illness. Peachtree Presbyterian Church Fellowship Hall, 3434 Roswell Road NE, Atlanta 30305.

FOR KIDS Wednesday, April 20, 7-8 p.m. Salaam Semaan, MPH, DrPH, Deputy Associate Director for Science, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, presents “Connecting Art and HIV/AIDS Prevention and Treatment.” Part of the lecture series accompanying Yale University’s “The Art of Public Health” exhibit. $5. Oglethorpe University Museum of Art, 4484 Peachtree Rd., Brookhaven, 30319. Call 404-364-8555 or visit: to find out more.

FOREST WALK Sunday, April 24, 10 a.m.-3:30

MARVELOUS MOTHERS! Tuesday, April 26, 4:30-5:30 p.m. Create a dimensional canvas as a Mother’s Day gift to celebrate Mom! Registration required and started April 1. Space is limited. Free. All are welcome. Geared for youngsters aged 5 and up. Email:, call 404-303-6130 or go to the Sandy Springs Library to register. 395 Mount Vernon Highway, Sandy Springs, 30328.

Dancer • Swimmer • Exercise Therapist • Teacher Music Lover • Volunteer • Canterbury Court Ambassador

My motto is exercise AND socialize.

IT’S ALL ABOUT HAVING FUN! Running 17 exercise classes each week, plus private sessions with people recovering from injury or surgery, would surely exhaust an average person. Of course, Mattie’s far from average. She’s a bundle of energy who loves to dance, works a variety of music into her classes, and joins Canterbury’s walking club whenever she can, especially when they’re training for the annual Peachtree Road 10k. She says residents and staff are so much like family that she’s always encouraging people to move here.

Mattie invites you to discover her Canterbury Court.

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20 | Out & About ■

Buckhead retiree finds passion in painting BY MARTHA NODAR

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Retired after a long career as a financial analyst, Buckhead artist Leon Borchers now has a studio in his home and says he’s “living his dream.” “I was always interested in art, but never took the time to paint until after I retired,” he said. “I put it off for 40 years.” Drawing a parallel between his career and his art-making, Borchers Artist Leon Borchers said he is driven by the same traits that helped him succeed in the business world—a meticulous eye for detail, a deep sense of planning and a dose of self-discipline. And yet, he is quick to admit he paints just for “his own pleasure.” He spends several days each week in his home studio just for the fun of it and refers “Annie in Red Hat,” an oil-on-paper work. to his craft “as a wonderful pastime.” “I just enjoy the moment,” he said. he emphasized that most of the time he ends After taking some classes and working up either donating his paintings to charity or with a mentor, Borchers joined the Buckgiving them away as gifts to his friends. head-based Atlanta Artists Center about 10 It has been the ability to unleash his creyears ago and began exhibiting his work. But ativity to fill in the gap between life before and after retirement that has added color to his life. Borchers and fellow AAC members, who also belong to the AAC’s Tuesday Sketch Group, are showing “Charismatic Characters” at the Buckhead Branch of the Fulton County Public Library System through May 10. “Annie in Red Hat,” is one of Borchers’ oil-on-paper pieces in the exhibit. Fellow AAC member Jane Springfield said she was “struck by the elegance” of the painting. Long-time AAC volunteer Cheryl D’Amato agreed. “This is a poster-esque painting of a striking, elegant female form,” D’Amato said. Sandy Springs artist Clara Blalock said the piece showed “a wonderful movement around the canvas.” She also found the image intriguing. “Is this lady waiting for a train or sitting in a hotel lobby?” Blalock posed. “What is her story?”

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Classifieds | 21



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Adult person willing to work days, nights and weekends. Full time position with Jacobs Engineering as maintenance tech/parks attendant for Sandy Springs Rec Dept. salary 15.00 per hr. and full benefits. Mail or email resume to City of Sandy Springs Recreation & Parks Department at: 7840 Roswell Road, Bldg 500, Sandy Springs, GA 30350 or Mosquito Joe is looking for Field Technicians in Dunwoody. Position is seasonal during the active mosquito spraying season, April-early Nov. Technicians need to be able to walk customer property, carry heavy equipment (60lbs) for long period of time in warm temps. Flexible hours. Contact Salma Ibarra 404-996-138,

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22 | Community ■

Massell: Today’s renters...‘will be tomorrow’s leaders’ Continued from page 1 ing units in a large building to be priced affordably. Contacted after Massell’s speech, several Buckhead community leaders said they generally agree with him. In emailed comments this week, some worried about traffic and the quality of construction being done, but said continued growth is coming. “Change is inevitable,” Fulton County Commissioner Lee Morris said. “We knew in the boom days of the ’90s that zoning decisions made in the ’80s would produce major changes, and we saw significant change in Buckhead in the ’90s. We will see more ahead. Mayor Massell is correct that Buckhead should embrace the apartment dwellers, as it has always embraced change.” Andrea Bennett, chair of the board of Neighborhood Planning Unit B, which covers much of Buckhead, agreed growth was inevitable in Buckhead, but, like Massell, she worried about the quality of the some of the buildings being constructed. “We need to do our best to see that new construction is of a caliber that will hold its value over time,” she wrote. “Since we’re building the future now, we should be thinking about how things will look 15 to 20 years down the road. That includes not only the buildings themselves but also our pedestrian and vehicle infrastructure.”

Massell described the influx of millennials into Buckhead in much the way some global leaders talk about international immigration—a big cultural change that is best handled by embracing it. He suggested business association members reach out individually to young newcomers. Massell also recalled that he came to Buckhead in 1952 as a tenant of a $50-amonth apartment, then went on to become mayor of Atlanta as well as president of the City Council and the business association itself. “So dismiss any concept that renters are second-class citizens,” he said. Atlanta City Councilman Howard Shook also said he assumed many current leaders and innovators “were tenants at some point in their lives, so that should hold true for tomorrow’s leaders and innovators.” “From a social and political perspective, demographic data as well as my experience suggests that although single-family homeowners may constitute a minority— and shrinking share — of Buckhead’s residents, they will continue to represent the vast majority of those with the ability and desire to make their voices heard in a coordinated fashion,” Shook said. “Notwithstanding the above, these units will add traffic to already heavily congested streets. From a policy perspective, I believe that this boom is, by itself, grounds to

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deny future density increases in Buckhead. You can’t fit a fifth quart in a gallon jar.” Wes Lyle of the Peachtree Park Civic Association also flagged increased traffic as a major problem. “As a Buckhead native, I also welcome all to Buckhead,” Lyle said. “I do have increasing concerns over traffic issues affecting our quality of life, JOHN RUCH though. This is obviously not Massell addresses the Buckhead Business Association the fault of those that want to move here, so I put no buraged in parts of the city that badly need reden on them. What I would like to see is sigvitalization. We need our city and county nificant impact fees on the developers, and (and, if necessary, state) leaders to fix these rental owners (those that stand to profit) abuses. ” on these units – be they apartments, conOn April 7, Massell’s speech was met dos, or hotels. Those fees should be investwith applause, but audience members had ed in improved and alternative transportaquestions about various traffic and develtion projects relevant to the area.” opment impacts. But Gordon Certain, president of the One member wanted to know what North Buckhead Civic Association, said Massell meant by his “old money” and one problem the neighborhood faces is the “fresh thinking” comments. “I’m just talkway city officials assess those impact fees. ing about the people who built Buckhead. I “Adding traffic on already crowded Buckdon’t mean to disparage anybody,” Massell head streets costs far more to address than said. “I don’t expect the millennials to all be it does in areas of the city where streets millionaires, but they definitely have fresh are underutilized and land is cheap. Yet thinking,” he added, suggesting that people the fees are the same,” he said. “The result visit Atlanta Tech Village “and you’ll get a is that new developments, such as aparttaste of what fresh thinking is all about.” ments, are subsidized here and are discour-

Q&A: Massell explains ‘affordable retail’ idea In a recent speech to the Buckhead Business Association, Sam Massell, the former Atlanta mayor and current Buckhead Coalition president, proposed an “affordable retail” program to include small, independent businesses in new commercial developments. He briefly described the idea as a set-aside for discounted space in such projects. Reporter Newspapers asked him to give a more detailed explanation of “affordable retail.” Q: Where did the “affordable retail” idea come from? Are there existing programs like this anywhere? A: The problem was occurring in all directions: strip centers of primarily mom-andpop, local businesses disappearing when purchased for the proliferation of high-rise apartment buildings. Thus, I proceeded to reason through how this could be corrected to the benefit of surrounding neighborhoods, and thought about the similarity to “affordable housing” programs. To my knowledge, there are no “affordable retail” governmental procedures, according to my inquiry of the International Downtown Association. Q: How do you envision it working in terms of setting the percentage of space and the rental rate? A: I haven’t done detailed planning on such a proposal, but would start with the common denominator of 10 percent often used in [affordable housing] pilot programs, with rental rates being established, perhaps with a formula using 10 percent as a discount from rates quoted for remaining chain-store type space. Q: Has any local developer agreed to do affordable retail following one of your conversations about this?

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A: Not specifically, but I have had major developers listen and promise to consider the idea as they progress with their apartment development cycle (sometimes taking two or three years from their initial land acquisition). 290 Carpenter Drive, 200A Sandy Springs, GA 30328


Q: Have you spoken with any City Council members or the mayor about making this a formal policy or ordinance? A: I have mentioned the idea to [city] planning staff for support (which has been positive), but not yet with elected officials. BH

APR. 15 - APR. 28, 2016

Public Safety | 23

Police Blotter / Buckhead From police reports dated from March 20 through April 2 The following information was provided to the Buckhead Reporter by the Zone 2 Precinct of the Atlanta Police Department and is presumed to be accurate.

„„2100 block of Peachtree Road NW –

On March 21, two employees of a popular steakhouse restaurant told police they were approached by two armed men while taking out the trash after the business closed. The gunmen wore masks, took the employees’ cellphones and wanted to know how many people were inside. The armed men then took the employees back into the restaurant and forced them to sit against a back wall with another employee who had been cleaning in the back of the restaurant. The armed men then made the employees lie on the floor and told the manager to bag up the money made that day. One suspect was watching the employees while the other held a gun to the manager’s head. The suspects also demanded cash from the drop box, but the manager said she did not have access to it. The employees told police while one suspect was gathering the money in the office, the other was confiscating their cellphones. The suspects collected $2,500 from the safe and $8,000 from the day’s earnings. They fled the scene in a dark SUV. „„3300 block of Peachtree Road NE – A

man leaving a popular mall on Peachtree Street said two men in a black SUV and allegedly members of the Bloods gang pulled alongside him and asked him if he was a member of the PIRU gang. He told them he was and they invited him into the SUV to smoke marijuana. After some time, the PIRU gang member got out of the car to use a vending machine and the SUV pulled off and then came back. The two men in the SUV got out and placed the other man in a chokehold, pulled a handgun on him and robbed him of an iPhone 6, a Samsung Galaxy 6 and $3,000 in cash. „„2500 block of Ridgewood Terrace NW

– On March 3, a man was robbed on the porch of his house and the gunman threatened to shoot him. The man’s MacBook Pro was taken from his lap.

ing the day of March 30, a gunman with an open umbrella that he used to block security cameras robbed a bank. He also stole the employees’ keys and raided their cars. in the morning, a man who was making a food delivery was robbed and stabbed in the hand after trying to fight off an assailant. „„ 2600 block of Pied-

mont Road NE – On March 30, a business was robbed by a man with a gun.

AG G R AVAT E D A S S AU LT „„ 1700 block of Northside Drive – On March 25, a man told police he was walking in a parking lot and noticed three men entering his vehicle. He yelled, “Hey!” at the men and they fled on foot through the parking deck. The man said he pursued the three men in the direction of Bellemeade Avenue, but the tallest man turned around and fired three shots in his direction, so he gave up pursuit. A witness saw a silver SUV with no tag speed out of the deck.

R E S I D E N T I A L B U R G L A RY „„1700 block of Paran Road NW – On

March 23, during the day, the rear door of a house was kicked in and a change jar and revolver were stolen. Pry marks were found on the patio door. „„1000 block of Huff Road NW – During

the day on March 23, the deadbolt to the front door of an apartment was damaged. A flat-screen TV, men’s jewelry, a leather storage box, car keys, fire safe, iPad 2 and coins were taken. „„2800 block of Morningside Drive NW

– On March 24, in the evening, a man told police he returned home to find his storage shed doors open. A lawn mower, golf shoes, leaf blower, golf bag and weed eater were missing. „„5100 block of Brookwood Valley Cir-

cle – A woman told police that on an unknown date and time she left her apartment and when she came back she discovered the front door unlocked. She said a Samsung Galaxy 6 was taken. She also told police she has a male friend who accesses the apartment at times.


from the original Chin Chin Brookhaven team Celebrating 21 years in Brookhaven!

„„1500 block of Howell Mill Road – Dur-

„„3200 block of Lenox Road – On April 1,


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Advertised APY and rate apply to the initial term only. 1Opt-Up option is based on the published rate for the standard 24-month Certificate of Deposit and can be exercised by contacting us when the published rate exceeds the initial advertised rate and APY. 2The maturity date will not change. Therefore, if the rate change is executed in the 10th month, the new rate will be in effect for the remaining 13 months. Annual Percentage Yield of 1.36% is accurate as of 2/15/16. The APY assumes that interest remains on deposit until maturity. Withdrawal of interest will reduce earnings. 3Minimum deposit to open a CD for this offer is $10,000 (new and existing money) to earn advertised APY. Term is 23-months. Early withdrawal penalties may apply. Offer is subject to change or end at any time without notice. Offer not valid for retirement CDs, brokerage deposits, institutional investors, public funds or in conjunction with other promotional offers. Interest compounds daily and may remain in the CD or be paid monthly or quarterly by check or transferred to an account with us. CD is automatically renewed into a 24-month standard CD at maturity unless we receive contrary instructions from you. Important Information about FDIC Deposit Insurance Coverage: Midtown Bank and Bank of Sandy Springs (Divisions of First Landmark Bank) and First Landmark Bank are the same FDIC-insured institution. Deposits held under First Landmark Bank or the trade names Midtown Bank and Bank of Sandy Springs are not separately insured, but are combined to determine whether a depositor has exceeded basic federal deposit insurance limits. Midtown Bank | 712 West Peachtree Street Atlanta, GA 30308 | 404.969.4400

24 | ■

Join Us and Party For a Purpose

5 Seasons Brewing Battle & Brew Bishoku Buttermilk Sky Pie Shop Café Posh Chef Rob’s Caribbean Café Cibo E Beve

May 14

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7-11 pm

For one night only more than 20 Sandy Springs restaurants will be rocking the big tents in the heart of Sandy Springs. Enjoy this all-inclusive event with food, w i n e , b e e r , c o c k t a i l s a n d l i v e m u s i c .

Dantanna’s Tavern Food 101 Hammock’s Trading Co. Hudson Grille Il Giallo Maya Steaks & Seafood

Live music from Ed Roland & the Sweet Tea Project, Tony Levitas and FRIENDS and the Tommy Dean Trio.

Meehan’s Public House Nancy G’s Nothing Bundt Cakes Rock ’N’ Taco Taziki’s Mediterranean Café Teela Taqueria Three Sheets Tin Can Fish House Under the Cork Tree *Restaurant list subject to change

Buy Your Tickets Today at EST.


4-15--2016 Buckhead Reporter  
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