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NOV. 25 - DEC. 8, 2016 • VOL. 8 — NO. 24


Brookhaven Reporter


Perimeter Business ► Weather Company moving to Perimeter Center PAGE 5 ► New programs promote local video gaming industry PAGE 7 Family recipe hits shelves, Page 4

Following the Peachtree Creek Greenway

Executive Park residents seek to be part of Brookhaven’s future BY DYANA BAGBY


Betsy Eggers, board chair of the Peachtree Creek Greenway, describes the planned 12-mile multi-use trail at a Nov. 19 “Pre-Peachtree Creek Greenway Walk.” Guests met at a site along the trail which, when complete, will connect neighborhoods along Peachtree Creek to the Atlanta Beltline. “This is the ABCD of the creek,” Eggers said. “Our trail will connect Atlanta with Brookhaven, with Chamblee, and with Doraville.” More photos, page 13.►

Standout Student

More. I just want to get everybody a better gift compared to years before. I don’t want to get them the same kind of gift. I want to upgrade. FRANCEIN TAVACKDI

Justice Michael

A passion for music See STORY on page 20

People tell us whether they will spend more or less than they did last year on holiday gifts. See Commentary, page 10

OUT & ABOUT Back to Nature Holiday Market Page 17

The sweet smell of baking bread wafts from EPI Breads and greets visitors to the Executive Parkview Townhomes. The bakery on Tullie Circle is just north of the Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta office park in Brookhaven’s city limits. The town homes, surrounded by trees on Woodcliff Drive and within yards of CHOA, are in unincorporated DeKalb County. Residents are hoping Brookhaven City Council will close the gap by approving a requested annexation. “Nobody knows we’re back here,” said Rick Bennett, HOA president for Executive Park Townhomes. “We’re a secret.” Seeking to be annexed into BrookhavSee EXECUTIVE on page 14

BuHi apartment association aims to be residents’ voice BY DYANA BAGBY

As developers continue to eye Buford Highway, residents living in the many apartment complexes along the road are coming together to ensure they have a voice about the future of where they live. The fledgling La Comunidad de Buford Highway (Buford Highway Apartment Association), made up of residents as well as representatives from the Latin American Association and Center for Pan Asian Community Services, have been meeting for several months at the home of Cross Keys High School English See BUHI on page 15

2 | Community


We Love BuHi, an organization dedicated to supporting a livable, inclusive, sustainable Buford Highway, has received a grant totaling just over $10,000 from the Community Foundation for Greater Atlanta. The money from the year-long Neighborhood Fund grant will be used to support a new business association made up of Buford Highway businesses and also support community-based tourism and economic development, said We Love BuHi founder Marian Liou. We Love BuHi is also now forming an official 501c3 nonprofit group, she said. “Now more than ever, a thriving Buford Highway is necessary for a thriving Atlanta,” Liou said in a statement. The Community Foundation for Greater Atlanta announced Nov. 14 it had granted $125,000 to 16 organizations, and provided over $16,000 for coaching of the recipients of Neighborhood Fund grants. The We Love BuHi mission statement states the organization “catalyzes and supports a livable, inclusive, sustainable Buford Highway through creative place-making collaborations with other social enterprises and nonprofit organizations and strategic partnerships with local businesses and governments. Program areas for We Love BuHi: ■ Arts BuHi – Catalyze development of cultural assets and programming through strategic collaborations and partnerships that capitalize on Buford Highway’s unique, multicultural identity. ■ Biz BuHi – Promote the vitality, sustainability and growth of the local business environment through advocacy, education and marketing support. ■ Design BuHi – Utilize placemaking principles to spark innovative approaches to design, community development, land use, and transportation and mobility. ■ Play BuHi – Make Buford Highway more fun, playful and active by encouraging the development of public space, opportunities for play and physical activity, and community festivals and events.


Nearly a year after the Brookhaven Zoning Board of Appeals denied Google Fiber’s request to build a utility hut in Parkside Park, a place to put the building still has not been located. Mayor John Ernst told residents attending his town hall Nov. 17 that the search for an alternative site for the utility hut to service the south side of the city is still underway. “The city is working really hard … so the south side can have some connectivity,” Ernst said. “I’m on a first-name basis with Google Fiber Georgia now.” While the technology has advanced in the past several months, Google Fiber still needs to build a 10-foot tall barbed-wire fence surrounding the building, Ernst said. Last December, the ZBA denied Google Fiber’s request to build the utility hut in Parkside Park, a narrow strip of greenspace running along Dresden Drive between Apple Valley Road and Parkside Drive. Google Fiber’s system requires a number of utility huts in central locations. In Brookhaven, the city agreed to provide space for two huts in public parks. One in Blackburn Park is finished. The other was to be built in Parkside Park, next to a DeKalb County fire station at the park’s western end. But the city later learned it did not own the strip of land there. That meant the Google Fiber hut had to be placed deeper into the park, much closer to a stream and Dresden Drive. The proximity to the stream required a zoning variance to reduce a buffer zone from 75 to 25 feet. The proximity to Dresden triggered community complaints about a fence at least 55 feet long fronting the street in a public park. The plan does include some vegetation screening the hut. There were zoning-oriented questions, too, including whether Google or the city should request the variance, why a zoning overlay district wasn’t addressed in the application, and whether the application was fully updated with the plan changes. ■

Drought triggers water-use restrictions for DeKalb County The state has placed water-use restrictions in DeKalb County due to drought conditions, including limits on lawn-watering and a ban on outdoor fountains and non-commercial car-washing. “Today’s declaration is driven by an extended period of little or no rain and increasing dryness in the impacted areas,” said Richard Dunn, director of the state Environmental Protection Division, in a Nov. 17 press release. “What’s more, there is little hope for relief as weather forecasters expect an unusually warm, dry winter across most of the state.” Metro Atlanta is in its 22nd week of drought conditions, according to the state. DeKalb and Fulton are among 52 Georgia counties to get an increased drought response. The counties had previously been under an informational advisory encouraging voluntary restrictions on water use. Now they are under some mandatory restrictions. Restricted but allowed outdoor water uses include: ■ Outdoor landscape watering is only allowed two days a week, determined by odd and even-numbered addresses. Even-numbered addresses and properties without numbered addresses may water on Wednesday and Saturday between 4 p.m. and 10 a.m. Oddnumbered addresses may water Thursday and Sunday between 4 p.m. and 10 a.m. ■ Irrigation of personal food gardens at any time of day. ■ Irrigation of new and replanted plant, seed or turf may at any time of day for 30 days after installation. ■ Drip irrigation or irrigation using soaker hoses at any time of day, and hand-watering with a hose with automatic cutoff or handheld container may be done at any time of day. Banned outdoor water uses include: ■ Washing hard surfaces, such as streets and sidewalks. ■ Water for ornamental purposes, such as fountains. ■ The use of fire hydrants, except for firefighting and public safety. ■ Non-commercial washing of vehicles. ■ Non-commercial pressure washing. ■ Fundraising car washes. For more information, see



Mayor John Ernst cuts the ribbon Nov. 22 for the new pedestrian bridge at Murphey Candler Park surrounded by friends, including Councilmembers John Park and Linley Jones and Parks and Recreation Director Brian Borden. The bridge was closed in November 2015 after a tree fell on it. The City Council approved more than $241,000 to replace it. The new bridge was delivered and installed this summer. The city also held a ribbon-cutting of the new pedestrian bridge at Briarwood Park on Nov. 21.


NOV. 25 - DEC. 8, 2016

Community | 3

Local mayors say that connectivity is key to cities’ success BY DYANA BAGBY

Connecting major metro Atlanta cities such as Brookhaven, Dunwoody, Chamblee and Doraville to one another through transit and multi-use trails is a major factor in developing and sustaining economic success for residents of the areas. That was a key message the mayors of the cities cited during the Nov. 17 Mayor’s Breakfast held at the Chamblee Civic Center. “Without that, you have nothing,” Doraville Mayor Donna Pittman said. Pittman said three major corporations have bypassed locating in the city and the Assembly Project, the site of the former GM plant where a massive mixed-use development is underway. “Because there was no commitment on connectivity, those corporations went elsewhere,” she said. DeKalb County and the city approved the project area as a Tax Allocation District, but the school district refused to agree with the plan. In August, the Doraville Development Authority approved more than $80 million in tax incentives for the project with the promise that the millions saved will go toward connecting the project to the Doraville MARTA station. Dunwoody Mayor Denis Shortal praised his city’s relationship with State Farm and its regional headquarters under construction adjacent to the Dunwoody MARTA station. The Dunwoody Development Authority this month approved $34 million in tax incentives for the corporation to build two more office towers on the site. As part of that deal, State Farm will pay for a MARTA Connector DYANA BAGBY Speaking at the Nov. 17 Mayor’s Breakfast sponsored by the Chamblee Chamber of and pedestrian bridge to maximize MARTA ridership and pay for the Commerce were, from left, Dunwoody Mayor Denis Shortal, Chamblee Mayor Eric construction of an east-west connector road. The road is intended to Clarkson, Doraville Mayor Donna Pittman and Brookhaven Mayor John Ernst. help ease traffic in the Perimeter Center area by funneling motorists off I-285 and under Ashford-Dunwoody Road directly to the State Farm site and off Ashford-Dunwoody Road and Hammond Drive. Brookhaven Mayor John Ernst said the Brookhaven/Oglethorpe MARTA station and its connectivity to thriving Dresden Drive as well as the busy Peachtree Road corridor and Buford Highway were instrumental for growth and development in those areas. But growth and change can bring some pushback from residents and a “balancing act” must be made, he said. “Everyone wants it except in their backyard,” he said. “There’s a lot of furor on this and a lot of people don’t want change. There is no formula.” Chamblee Mayor Eric Clarkson lauded his city’s “rail-trail” project that will include pedestrian and bicycle connectivity by converting an abandoned rail corridor into a multi-use trail to downtown while supporting the planned Chamblee MARTA station transit-oriented development. “The new generation is embracing transit ... and we want to give people the option to ride their bikes to work,” he said, noting that Trackside, the name of the new development planned for the Chamblee MARTA station is installing showers for employees to use after cycling to the office. Clarkson also noted people feared change but that municipalities must plan for the future. “We need to be looking local and acting regionally,” he said. Ernst, Pittman and Clarkson said they are all concerned and excited about the future development of Buford Highway, which runs through each of the cities. “This is one of our biggest assets,” Ernst said, noting Buford Highway’s culturally diverse population and businesses and the economic impact it has in the area. “But we do not want to bulldoze and replace with gentrification ... we want to embrace the culture and sell it,” he said. Ernst noted the city is focusing on affordable housing for the area and said the city wants to “change the buildings but not the people.” 4000 square foot store filled with “Embracing Buford Highway is how to go,” he said. Luggage Bags Wallets Clarkson said Doraville and Chamblee are now working with the Atlanta RegionBriefcases Duffels Gifts al Commission on a Livable Centers Initiative for Buford Highway. He said the cities Portfolios Backpacks Belts want to make sure they don’t destroy the area, but enhance it. “We want to maintain the diverse culture,” Clarskson said.


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4 | Perimeter Business ■

Perimeter Business A monthly section focusing on business in the Reporter Newspapers communities

Father and son aim to add bloody marys to the craft cocktail trend BY JOHN RUCH

In a wood-paneled office on Lake Forrest Drive in Sandy Springs, prominent zoning attorney Pete Hendricks has hashed out real estate plans with such major metro Atlanta clients as Cousins Properties and Ashton Woods. Now that office doubles as the headquarters for a more personal business: Sister’s Sauce, a handcrafted bloody mary cocktail mix that Pete’s son Nat is making from an old family recipe. It’s named for a beloved bird dog who is depicted in an oil painting hanging over the office fireplace. “Over the years, we’ve served it to friends,” Pete Hendricks said of the bloody mary mix he first whipped up in college 50 years ago. “People kept saying, ‘You’re nuts not to do anything with this.’” A year ago, Nat decided to take the reci-

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pe commercial as a way to escape a corporate job for a more creative and personally rewarding line of work. “It encapsulates a lot of what I value— our family, our dogs,” Nat said. As a business, the Hendrickses aim to have Sister’s Sauce bring bloody mary mix into the booming craft cocktail and beer market. “The [craft] mentality hasn’t been applied to this yet,” said Nat, whose Sister’s Sauce label design advertises it as “bespoke” and “handcrafted one bottle at a time.” The bloody mary is a cocktail that mixes vodka and tomato juice with a variety of spices and seasonings, typically including horseradish, lemon juice, celery seed, pepper and Tabasco and Worcestershire sauces. A bloody mary mix is a prepared version of the tomato juice and seasonings ready for adding to vodka. Pete Hendricks developed his mix in the 1960s when he attended Washington JOHN RUCH and Lee University in Virginia. He said it Nat (left) and Pete Hendricks pose with a bottle of Sister’s Sauce under a painting was the “old-school Washington and Lee,” depicting the mix’s namesake, Sister the bird dog, at their Sandy Springs office. where food-servers dished out cocktails on interned for then-Rep. Nathan Deal, now As for what’s inside the bottle, Nat says Sunday mornings. One option was a tub Georgia’s governor. Nat ended up with a there are no secret ingredients, just “a very of vanilla ice cream with bourbon poured job at a logistics firm overseeing the imporclassic, simple bloody mary the way it over it; bloody marys were another option. tation of auto parts. He should be made.” “I got tired of drinksaid it was financially, but “Life’s complicated enough,” he said. “In ing these bloody marys not creatively, rewarding. a world of over-complication, this is simwhere I just felt bloated Looking around for ple.” when I was done,” Pete other options, Nat said, But it’s a finely tuned mix of the genersaid. “I started screwhe asked himself, “What ations, with the father’s old-school recipe ing around with concocif I start making dad’s refined by the son who talks in the modtions” and developed his mix?” ern language of “sustainable” and “holistic” own recipe. He got a commercial business. Pete said Nat “took the concocThe future Sister’s cooking certification, tion and refined it, but got all the junk out Sauce got one previous tweaked Pete’s recipe, of it.” It has no MSG or high-fructose corn public tasting in the earand began hand-bottling syrup, and it’s gluten-free, Nat says. ly 1970s, when Kathy the mix at shared kitchen While the Hendrickses can’t control Hendricks — Pete’s wife facilities, most recently at how people serve Sister’s Sauce, they hope and Nat’s mother — ran the University of Georgia. the attitude of simplicity carries over into a cooking and catering He dreams of opening his the garnish, which in many bars and resbusiness called Cook’s own “saucery,” a term he taurants is going well beyond the standard Corner on Buckhead’s coined for a mix-making celery stick and olives. Nat said he’s seen East Shadowlawn AveJOHN RUCH kitchen. “outlandish-looking bloody marys … with nue. Pete taught a course The label of Sister’s Sauce bloody The brand name came three chicken wings sticking out.” on his three special- mary mix features the dog Sister. naturally from Sister, The handmade Sister’s Sauce sells for ties: bloody marys, fried who belonged to a line of $15 a bottle — two to three times the price chicken and cole slaw. hunting dogs now in its eighth and ninth of the typical jug of mix available in groKathy’s kitchen also was an influence generations on the Hendricks family farm cery stores. Nat said his customers find it on Nat, who played at tossing together inin Starrsville in Newton County. Pete calls a fair price for a handcrafted family recipe. gredients. Sister, who died in 1990, “the love of my Sister’s Sauce launched a year ago at a “Mom would say, ‘You’re making polife.” She was important to Nat, too. pop-up shop in Midtown’s Ponce City Martions now,’” Nat recalled. “Literally his first word, clear as a bell, ket and is now available at specialty stores But Nat’s first career steps, a decade was ‘Sister,’ ” Pete recalled. around Atlanta, including Lucy’s Market in ago, headed toward government and comA painting of Sister decorates the mix’s Buckhead. For more information, see facemercial real estate. In 2006 and 2007, he label.

NOV. 25 - DEC. 8, 2016

Perimeter Business | 5

Weather Company moving corporate headquarters to Perimeter Center

Buckhead location Opening Spring 2017


The Weather Company is moving its corporate headquarters to the Perimeter Summit office complex in Brookhaven, according to a press release from Gov. Nathan Deal. The company, whose weather-forecasting products and services formerly included the now independently run Weather Channel, will relocate from Cobb County to 1001 Perimeter Summit Parkway in Perimeter Center in spring 2017, according to the press release. The move includes the creation of 400 jobs. “The Weather Company has made significant contributions in Georgia for more than three decades,” Deal said in the press release. “The company’s decision to expand its workforce in the metro Atlanta area is a reflection of our state’s ability to retain dynamic companies with our businessfriendly environment and highly skilled workforce. We look forward to our ongoing relationship with The Weather Company and its continued success in Georgia.” “We are pleased that The Weather Company has chosen Brookhaven, with everything our city has to offer, for its new headquarters,” said city spokesperson Ann Marie Quill. “The company’s decision to remain in Georgia and expand its workforce in Brookhaven will be a benefit to the city, the [Perimeter Center Improvement Districts], the region and the state.” IBM bought the Weather Company early this year. “The combination of technology and expertise from The Weather Company and IBM is progressing well as we create additional value for the clients of both companies,” said Cameron Clayton, The Weather Company’s CEO and general manager, in the press release. “The additional hiring and the move to a new headquarters are indicative of the support and investment that IBM is providing to attract and retain the best and brightest as we build this amazing business.” The Weather Company will be eligible for tax incentives if and when it actually creates the promised jobs, according to Stefaine Paupeck Harper, a spokesperson for the Georgia Department of Economic Development. The company would be eligible for the “Quality Jobs Tax Credit,” with varying amounts depending on the salaries of the created jobs, she said. The company did not receive any city incentives for the relocation, according to Quill.

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For Braves, stadium traffic is a business decision BY JOHN RUCH

here,” he said. He noted that SunTrust Park will have about 9,000 fewer seats and many more As the April 14 Opening Day nears for entrances than the old Turner Field, nickthe new Atlanta Braves stadium complex named “The Ted.” Unlike The Ted, the new in Cobb County, many Sandy Springs resistadium is paired with a massive mixed-use dents and officials have voiced fears of trafproject called the Battery, featuring many fic jams. A common complaint is that the shops and restaurants. The idea is that trafteam is more focused on its stadium busific will be spread out, instead of jammed at ness than on its neighborhood impacts. game time, as many fans choose to come It turns out that the Braves have worearlier and stay later for shopping and eatried about traffic, too, because it could iming. pact stadium business. Evan Gitomer, the However, some Sandy Springs officials executive in charge of marketing and seatsay they are more concerned about the Batselling at the Braves’ SunTrust Park, sits in tery’s traffic impacts than that of the ballon traffic-planning meetings, he said at a park. Nov. 10 talk at Temple Emanu-El in Sandy Gitomer said the Braves also expectSprings. ed some traffic improve“Parking meetings are ments due to the ballpark not my favorite,” Gitomer being located closer to its said. But sales and trafnorth metro Atlanta seafic-planning departments son-ticket population. must work together, he He said that “55 percent said, because the Braves are of the people that come selling an entire fan “expethrough our gates come rience.” with a child,” leading the “What we learned is, team to assume fans will the experience doesn’t start travel from home rather when [fans] walk in the than from the workplace, doors,” Gitomer said. It incutting down on long-disSPECIAL cludes how long, and how tance travels from work Evan Gitomer, marketing painlessly, it takes them to centers such as downdirector at the Atlanta get to the ballpark, he said. Braves’ SunTrust Park. town. That’s one reason the Seat sales are “very Braves have made such good,” Gitomer said. He explained that changes as moving game start times back the goal in baseball is selling about half to 7:30 p.m., he said, a decision that came the seats as season tickets, and the Braves from a 12-day study of when rush hour are “well beyond half” now. He said comstarts to thin out. petition with Atlanta’s other sports teams Gitomer spoke about the stadium as with new stadiums is a factor, but baseball part of Temple Emanu-El’s community is different in deliberately keeping some lecture series. He’s a consultant with the low-priced seats. At SunTrust, the cheapest sports marketing firm Van Wagner Sports seats will be $6 and the most expensive will & Entertainment, hired by the Braves to dibe around $500. rect stadium marketing, starting with sellFans at Temple Emanu-El were eager ing the naming rights to SunTrust. to know whether they would be allowed Gitomer has worked in similar posito bring food into SunTrust games. Gitions for such teams as the NFL’s Philadeltomer said the team hasn’t decided yet phia Eagles and, most recently, the Orlanand that safety is a factor. do Magic basketball team. He talked about Regarding in-house concessions, the getting into the sports marketing business team is focused on quality rather than after seeing how games can bring people rock-bottom pricing, he said, contrasttogether with events that are “trivial” in the ing it with the Mercedes-Benz Stadium’s grand scheme of things. recently announced plans to sell $2 hot “You start to see this camaraderie that’s dogs. At SunTrust, he said, concession built,” he said. “You see people going to companies pay the Braves a flat fee, not those games and hugging complete stranga percentage of sales, so they have an iners.” centive to sell higher-quality food. However, the Braves’ move from AtlanResidents at the talk also were curita to Cobb has not always generated camaous about rumors of a grocery store joinraderie. About 250 people attended a Seping the Battery complex. Gitomer said tember forum in Sandy Springs to voice the Braves are in talks with two grocery concerns about traffic. At the Temple Emachains, but added that it’s a tough businu-El talk, a few residents expressed siminess driven by highly specific demolar fears. graphic statistics. Gitomer said that, while the Braves have “I wouldn’t say it’s impossible,” he their own concerns, they’re also comfortsaid of a grocer coming to the Battery. able with the solutions. “I would say I would anticipate one will “We’re in Atlanta. Traffic’s not great happen.”

NOV. 25 - DEC. 8, 2016

Perimeter Business | 7

Video game industry ‘ecosystem’ gets local boosts BY JOHN RUCH

ment industry. A video of the conference shows officials discussing the Georgia boom, with As Georgia’s video game industry more than 113 game development compabooms, so are local efforts to help organize nies operating in the state, up from eight in and sustain it. 2005, with an estimated $550 million ecoAn October conference at Sandy nomic impact. Springs’ Launch Media Network brought One of the biggest is Alpharetta’s Hi-Rez a hundred professionals together to share Studios, makers of the hit game “Smite.” ideas, and early this month, DeKalb CounA combat game, “Smite” has become an ety debuted a Film, Music and Digital Entersport that has highly skilled players comtainment Commission. peting for prize money in tournaments The efforts all are about developing “the fans can view online or on TV. media of the 21st century” the way metro Todd Harris, chief operating officer of Atlanta in the previous century developed Hi-Rez, said at the Launch Media conferthe likes of CNN and Turner, said Andrew ence that his company started with four Greenberg, who is one of the new DeKalb employees and now has 275, with plans to commission’s members as add 75 more in the next year. well as executive director of While “Smite” turns a the Georgia Game Developers few players into well-paid eAssociation. sports athletes, Harris said Launch Media is a video that gaming can connect game journalism, marketing people to coding and comand social networking computer jobs in general. pany that recently moved to “Gaming is basically a Sandy Springs from Buckgateway for many people head. On Oct. 12, it hosted a into technology,” he said at conference called “Exploring the conference. “For many the Ecosystem of the Gaming SPECIAL people, games are what light Andrew Greenberg, Industry.” that fire.” executive director “The purpose of the event Launch Media is planof the Georgia Game was to unite Atlanta leaders, ning another conference, Developers Association businesses, universities and with the Game Developers game development studios Association, next spring. to meet one another to discuss the impact The new DeKalb entertainment comof the gaming industry and its growth in mission is intended to foster the partnerGeorgia,” said Launch Media spokesperson ships and mentoring that draws employees Kathryn De Shields. into the industry and provides opportuAmong those attending were officials nities for them closer to home, Greenberg from the Georgia Department of Economsaid. ic Development; professors and students “DeKalb County was the epicenter of from Georgia State, Kennesaw State and the gaming industry in Georgia” in the SCAD Atlanta; and leaders of the state’s big1990s and 2000s, he said. Back then, he was gest gaming companies. lead developer of “Vampire: The Masquer“Launch Media is not only producing ade,” an extremely popular tabletop game jobs in Georgia, but they are supporting opcreated by White Wolf, a company based portunities for students, companies, and at the time in Stone Mountain. And today, gaming enthusiasts,” said Asante Brad“The county is home to astonishing numford, the Department of Economic Develber of creators,” including 600 film union opment’s liaison to the digital entertainmembers, he said.

‘Tis the season to treat yourself to our Holiday Open House.

You’re cordially invited to our Holiday Open House Saturday, December 3rd • Noon-2:00pm Wow! We’ve been busy. We’ve been decorating our community in its “holiday best” and we’re soooo excited to show you. So, if you’ve been thinking about taking a tour of The Piedmont, now may just be the best time ever. And did we mention the holiday goodies? Go ahead, treat yourself to our Holiday Open House and grab hold of some holiday cheer (and maybe a cookie, too).

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8 | Community ■

Officials: Georgia GOP needs to reach beyond white voters BY DYANA BAGBY

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Buckhead Business Association

Annual Luncheon Event featuring keynote speaker

Jesse Itzler As a serial entrepreneur, Jesse has led an extraordinary career across a variety of industries from music to private aviation and sports. Jesse will discuss life in business, as an endurance athlete, rapper and part owner of the Atlanta Hawks. He will also touch on his transformational experience captured in the recently published book Living with a SEAL.

Buckhead Business of the Year Awards Thursday, January 12, 2017 Sponsored by Atlanta Marriot Buckhead Hotel & Conference Center 11:30 AM – 1:30PM

Member Pricing $75 ticket / $700 for a table of 10 Non-Member Pricing $85 ticket / $765 for a table of 10

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Each year, the BBA honors five Buckhead businesses that fill a niche in the market, showcase excellent customer service, and demonstrate a commitment to the community. Other BBA annual awards include Bullish on Buckhead, the Buckhead Beautification Award and Entrepreneur of the Year. Buckhead Business Awards Presented By:

said. Republicans did score a victory in House District 80, which inGeorgia Republicans should broaden cludes Brookhaven and a slice of Sandy their party’s appeal to Latinos, Asians Springs, with Meagan Hanson defeatand African Americans if they want to ing incumbent state retain control of the Rep. Taylor Bennett by governor’s mansion fewer than 300 of the and the Legislature in 24,486 votes cast. the future, local politiJoseph Knippencal experts say. berg, a professor of pol“We need to reach itics at Brookhaven’s out and work with peoOglethorpe University, ple who aren’t Caucasaid while Democrats sian. It’s that simple,” like to claim HD 80 is a said State Sen. Fran swing district, “it’s basiMillar (R-Dunwoody). cally a Republican dis“We need to have a mestrict” where “a generic sage that resonates Republican beats a gewith these people.” neric Democrat for the Millar was re-electtime being.” ed Nov. 8 to a third term Knippenberg said representing District Hill’s “near death exFILE 40, which covers porGOP tate Sen. Fran Millar perience” is due to the of Dunwoody said while tions of DeKalb, Fulton rapidly changing deRepublicans mostly prevailed and Gwinnett counties. mographics of his disin the Nov. 8 election, state Although traditionaltrict and that some ReRepublicans will need ly a Republican strongto reach out to African publicans, such as Hill Americans, Asians and Latino hold, the district’s deand Millar, can no lonto ensure they keep their mographics have ger waltz into office power in the legislature. changed dramatically and will have to “break in recent years as mema sweat” in upcoming races and also bers of minority groups and transplants reach out to minorities. have moved to the suburbs. Millar, who voted for Trump, said Millar’s opponent, Tamara Johnsonthe contentious president-elect might Shealey, a Peachtree Corners Democrat have played a role in hurting some lowho ran on a platform that included cal Republican candidates in the metprotecting voter rights and being supro-Atlanta suburbs, such as in Cobb and portive of immigrants, received 44 perGwinnett. cent of the vote -- two more points than “For me, [voting for Trump] was she received when she ran against Milabout capitalism and the Supreme lar two years ago. Court,” he said. “And she didn’t do Millar denied Trump anything. She ran a ran a racist and anti-SeFacebook campaign mitic campaign and said and got 44 percent of “he’s not going to deport the vote. That is an area 10 million” undocuof concern for me,” he mented immigrants like said. he promised throughState Sen. Hunter out his campaign. InHill (R-Smyrna), whose stead, Millar said he bedistrict includes parts lieves Trump and his of Sandy Springs and administration will foBuckhead, won his recus on health care, edelection with only 52 ucation, lowering taxes percent of the vote over and transportation. Democrat and political “For the things that newcomer, communiare important to everyFILE ty activist and pediatric one, you have to offer a Dunwoody state Rep. Tom dentist Jaha Howard. solution,” Millar said. Taylor said the changing And with Cobb and State Rep. Tom Taydemographics of Georgia Gwinnett counties votmeans Republicans need to lor (R-Dunwoody) ran begin embracing ‘fiscally ing for Democrat Hillunopposed in District conservative and socially ary Clinton over Repub79, which includes pormoderate’ policies. lican Donald Trump in tions of Chamblee and the presidential race, Millar said state Doraville, cities known for their ethnic Republicans can no longer “take things and racial diversity and immigrant popfor granted.” ulations. He agreed with Millar that this “This is maybe a wake-up call,” he election might indeed be a wake-up call

NOV. 25 - DEC. 8, 2016

Community | 9

for state Republicans. “Georgia’s population is becoming more urbanized,” he said. “We had a large influx of immigrants from the Olympics who have now become citizens. We’ve got a lot corporations relocating here.” Rather than focusing on rural, mostly white constituents, Republicans will need to be more welcoming of being labeled “fiscal conservatives but social moderates,” Taylor said. Knippenberg said the state GOP may have to rein in rural lawmakers who might feel emboldened by a Trump presidency to continue to push for controversial socially conservative policies. “Republicans who have won in metro Atlanta need to figure out a way to persuade rural Republicans to not hang issues on them that will hurt them,” he said. An example is the Religious Restoration Freedom Act, vetoed by Gov. Nathan Deal last year, and heavily supported by Republicans living outside Atlanta’s blue bubble. “If the party is not competitive in metro Atlanta, it is not going to win the governor’s seat,” he said. The national Anti-Defamation League, with a Southeastern office in Atlanta, is tracking upticks of hate crimes across the country in the wake of Trump’s election. It condemned the appointment of Steve Bannon, former Breitbart News executive, CEO of Trump’s presidential campaign and now the White House chief strategist, warning of Bannon’s support of the alt-right movement, a “loose network of white nationalists and anti-Semites.” David Schaefer, director of Policy and Advocacy for the Latin American Association, which has an outreach center on Buford Highway in Brookhaven, said his organization still is analyzing Trump’s transition and his cabinet picks. “[W]e are responding in ways that will address the concerns of the community,” Schaefer said. “We are working with the Mexican Consulate [located on Chantilly Drive, just across I-85 from Brookhaven and Buckhead] to hold a series of community informational forums in the upcoming weeks.” Locally, two Cross Keys High School teachers recently were suspended after they were accused of making deportation threats to some students; Cross Keys is known for its many Latino students. Taylor said in a recent interview he voted for Trump but knew nothing of Bannon. “I had never heard of him … I know no history of this guy,” he said. “There’s a lot of rhetoric out there.” He asked people to “give everyone a chance” and said change in government moves like an aircraft carrier, or, in other words, very slowly. “We will have to wait and see what happens,” he said.

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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 ■

Commentary / Holiday Spending


Do you plan to spend more or less on presents this holiday season?

Phone: 404-917-2200 • Fax: 404-917-2201 Brookhaven Reporter | Buckhead Reporter Dunwoody Reporter | Sandy Springs Reporter Atlanta INtown Atlanta Senior Life

Less, because of the financial situation and because our kids are older.


C O NTA C T US Founder & Publisher Steve Levene



About the same, or maybe a smidge more, because my kids are a little older and I like to treat them well.

Managing Editor John Ruch INtown Editor: Collin Kelley Editor-at-Large Joe Earle Staff Writer: Dyana Bagby

The same. I don’t give a lot of gifts. Every day is a holiday.


Copy Editor: Donna Williams Lewis Creative and Production Creative Director Rico Figliolini Graphic Designer: Soojin Yang

About the same. Why upset tradition? Both kids are in college and expenses are tight. It won’t be too lavish, money is going to college education.


Advertising Director of Sales Development Amy Arno Sales Executives Jeff Kremer, Janet Porter Jim Speakman, Janet Tassitano Office Manager Deborah Davis

About the same. We spend pretty consistently every year.


Contributors Kate Awtrey, Robin Conte, Justin Fedich, Phil Mosier

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Less, because I bought everything big last year. It will be mostly toys this year for my cousins, my sister’s kid and my child.

More. I just want to get everybody a better gift compared to years before. I don’t want to get them the same kind of gift. I want to upgrade.



Less, because we are officially empty nesters now and Christmas will be smaller, a little more toned down this year. I would like to do an adult Christmas, just more practical gift giving.

advertising. Any opinions expressed in print or online do not necessarily represent the views of Reporter Newspapers or Springs Publishing, LLC. BK

NOV. 25 - DEC. 8, 2016

Commentary | 11

Thanksgiving: It’s all in the timing What I lack in cooking skills I make up ing top chefs who show me exactly how to for in organizational abilities. I put those create perfectly mashed potatoes and foolabilities to the test in November; basically, I proof cornbread stuffing, then bookmarkplan the heck out of Thanksgiving. ing those videos to my “Thanksgiving File,” My kids retreat with us to which I will revisit four days the mountains for the holiahead of time. day, the current deal being This is all much more satthat I cook and they clean. isfying than doing the actual I admit that I would love cooking, by the way. to create the iconic RockBut at one week ahead of wellian turkey every time, time, the business starts in but I only get one shot at it earnest. That’s when I begin per year, and my learning to label all the serving dishes curve is way slower than and inventory my piles of inthat. So I’ve given up on this gredients. goal. I’d also love to present a And then, it’s four days feast for my family complete ahead of time, and I must cook with three buttery starches, something. two orange sides, something So I do, and even if it’s a green, and a choice of homemake-ahead carrot and caulimade pies, but I’m too lazy to Robin Conte is a writer flower purée that no one will do all of that. and mother of four who eat, it is incredibly gratifying You see, I’m a Type A perlives in Dunwoody. She to have completed one dish. I sonality trapped in a Type B can be contacted at proceed thusly, one dish at a body. time, until the big day, when I’ve therefore reduced my the main things left to do are own expectations to their esshove the turkey in the oven sence, and my holiday goals (not necessarand then turn something into gravy. In ily in this order) are twofold: 1) produce an keeping with my personal Thanksgiving edible meal, and 2) watch the entire Matradition, I must perform these tasks in my cy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade in my pajabathrobe. mas. And for someone who can’t boil an Now that the Big Day is behind me and egg without referring to a recipe, meetI’ve managed to lounge my way through ing said goals requires a bit of planning. the kitchen and The Parade, I can confirm So I approach the fourth Thursday of Nofor another year that what master cooks vember armed with lists, charts, a stack of say is true: It’s all in the timing. cookbooks, a file of YouTube videos, and a highlighter. I start two months ahead of time by rummaging through my cabinets, looking for the menu that I’ve used for the Thanksgiving weekend for the past five years. Then I go to the grocery store and stock up on butter, wine, and cream of mushroom soup. Four weeks ahead of time, I am thumbing through recipe books, searching for something I can make four days ahead of time. Three weeks ahead of time, I am purchasing a new cooking tool — a potato ricer, for example — that is vital to the recipe that I can make four days ahead of time. Then, I am cleaning out my kitchen cabinets to make room for that new item (by SPECIAL discarding the older, smaller, and in all Robin Conte gets into her ways inferior potato ricer). Thanksgiving Day cooking comfort Two weeks ahead of time, I am spendzone by starting planning and ing hours surfing the internet and watchpreparations two months ahead.

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12 | Community ■

State Legislature may require notice about local tax incentive deals BY DYANA BAGBY

The role municipal and county development authorities play in handing out tax incentives to corporations and how they can work together is expected to be reviewed in the General Assembly in the upcoming session. State Sen. Elena Parent (D-Atlanta), whose district includes Brookhaven, said she is considering proposing legislation to promote discussions on how the various development authorities communicate.

We don’t want a sideshow of county versus city. I have talked with the schools and the county. Good governments do this to have good institutional relationships. That’s what people expect so governments can work. BROOKHAVEN CITY MANAGER CHRISTIAN SIGMAN

“We do have a problem with jurisdictions coming out ahead by raiding other [jurisdictions],” she said. In June, the city of Brookhaven granted a $36 million tax abatement to the At-

lanta Hawks for its state-of-the-art training center now under construction in Executive Park. The type of abatement from Brookhaven is a payment in lieu of taxes, known as a PILOT fee. The Hawks are paying the city’s Development Authority $302,900 a year for 15 years in exchange for the abatement and EMORY HEALTHCARE The city of Brookhaven in April approved a $36 million tax abatement for the Atlanta Hawks to build a state-of-thethe end result is art practice facility in Executive Park. The facility is a partnership between the Hawks and Emory Healthcare. the county and the DeKalb School Disently did not factor in the cost of city serlicly voicing their concerns that the detrict are out milvices. velopers for the Brookhaven/Oglethorpe lions of dollars of property taxes during Mayor John Ernst said in July that MARTA mixed-use development project that time. disagreements with the county over the are intending to seek tax incentives from DeKalb Commissioner Jeff Rader in Brookhaven deal would likely have to be the city’s development authority and say July sponsored a resolution passed by brought up by the state Legislature. And they want to bring the county and school the Board of Commissioners “to oppose that is where Rader and the Board of district into the conversation. However, city development authority tax abateCommissioners have taken their case. rezoning for the project has not yet been ment transactions without all developRader said he is working with Parent approved and no official request from ment authorities agreeing to be bound on possible legislation that would require MARTA has been made to the city. by a consolidated, consistent and equicity and county development authorities Brookhaven City Manager Christian table abatement policy.” The resolution to talk to each other before abatements Sigman downplayed any conflicts bespecifically denounced the annual payare approved. Parent said she is specifitween the Decide DeKalb Development ments to the Brookhaven Development cally concerned about the school system Authority and the city. He said the city Authority. losing tax money in such deals. has a good working relationship with In 2015, the Decide DeKalb Develop“What we’re looking to do is put in the county development authority and ment Authority surprised Brookhaven place not a veto authority, but to open up school district. officials by granting tax abatements to conversations with the school system be“We don’t want a sideshow of county Source One Direct at 1500 Northeast Excause their interests should be representversus city,” he said. pressway and also an office tower going ed,” she said. “Right now, they have no “I have talked with the schools and up at 4004 Perimeter Summit Parkway. say and the deals are taking away monthe county. Good governments do this The city part of the tax breaks totals ey from them.” to have good institutional relationships. $537,000 and, while the developments in Brookhaven Councilmembers Joe That’s what people expect so governtheory will boost city coffers more than Gebbia and Bates Mattison are also pubments can work.” that, the abatement calculation appar-

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Community | 13

Peachtree Creek Greenway walk explores ‘before’ of planned trail




Peachtree Creek Greenway supporters led a tour on Nov. 19 of some of the area that is part of a planned 12-mile multi-use trail connecting neighborhoods along Peachtree Creek to the Atlanta Beltline. The group met at a gravel path on Briarwood Road at the bridge of Peachtree Creek to discuss the possibilities that a multi-use trail could bring to the area. A - Betsy Eggers, board chair of the Peachtree Creek Greenway (right), and REI associate Penny Wischusen, hold up a map of the Peachtree Creek Greenway. B - Brookhaven resident Duncan Van Pett (left) talks with Gerri Vereen, a member of the board of directors for the Greenway. C - Walkers explore some of the land included in the Peachtree Creek Greenway trail. D - REI associate Penny Wischusen steps over trees to view part of the planned trail that will connect Atlanta with the cities of Brookhaven, Chamblee and Doraville.



14 | Community ■

Executive Park residents seek to be part of Brookhaven’s future Continued from page 1 en along with Executive Park Townhomes are the Executive Park Apartments on Briarcliff Road, the Executive Park Condominiums on Executive Park Lane and two single-family homes at 1705 and 1721 Woodcliff Drive N.E. The two houses have been purchased by a developer seeking to have the property redeveloped into nine townhomes. A recent request to the DeKalb County Board of Commissioners to rezone the property for multi-use homes was deferred. The total annexation area is approximately 19 acres and includes nearly 200 people. “This is completely resident-led, all done by volunteers,” Bennett said of the annexation request. Talk among residents living in the idyllic area amidst the hustle and bustle of Executive Park and Brighten Park began in earnest after the City Council annexed Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta and Executive Park in late 2014. With their property now border-

We tried to look at every scenario and talked to other Brookhaven residents. We don’t want to be a burden on the city. We want to have a positive impact. RICK BENNETT, HOA PRESIDENT FOR EXECUTIVE PARK TOWNHOMES

ing CHOA, and therefore the city, Bennett said volunteers in the multi-family complexes began gathering the required 60 percent support from their neighbors. Then the LaVista Hills cityhood movement began in early 2015 and the residential properties were drawn into the proposed city. Efforts to be annexed into Brookhaven were postponed. “Those of us living here were overwhelmingly opposed to being part of LaVista Hills,” Bennett said. When the LaVista Hills city vote failed DYANA BAGBY in a squeaker of a vote Rick Bennett sits on a wall behind his Executive Parkview townhome on Woodcliff Drive, last November, Benlocated in unincorporated DeKalb County. The trees behind him are in the Brookhaven city limits and hide the barely visible Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta office park. nett and his neighbors breathed a sigh of rebe a burden on the city. We want to have of Brookhaven closely since it was crelief. But they still worried about their a positive impact.” ated in 2012 and said he has been most future. The annexation request was formalimpressed by how the city officials reLynette Mathews, who also lives in ly filed with the city last month and the spond to residents. He and his neighExecutive Park Townhomes, said it was Planning Commission is slated to conbors want to be able to have that kind time for residents to take a proactive sider the rezoning of the property at its of input as the area surrounding them approach to determining where they Dec. 7 meeting. The City Council will continues to be developed. wanted to belong. consider the annexation at its Dec. 13 Last year, City Council approved re“Even though Brookhaven was not meeting. zoning for a CHOA 340,000 squaremaking a play for us, [the question was] At Mayor John Ernst’s Nov. 17 town foot eight-story outpatient building at where did we want to be?” she said. “Do hall meeting, City Manager Christian the busy I-85/North Druid Hills interwe want to be masters of our destiny, or Sigman explained the city is conductchange. be a volleyball batted around?” ing its own studies of what the annexaA master plan is in the works for the Efforts picked back up to seek tion may cost the city for services such hospital’s 30 acres. Emory University Brookhaven annexation in December as police protection and Public Works this year purchased 60 acres of Execu2015 and six months of “intensive due coverage. Because the area is so small tive Park and has plans for a mixed-use diligence” began, Bennett said. and in good shape, the financial impact development in the area to include comSpreadsheets were created to show appears negligible, Sigman said. mercial and residential property. residents what their property taxBennett said the residential areas are “With all the development and rezones would be if annexed by Brookhavself-sustaining and HOA fees cover waing going on, we want to part of that,” en and showed an approximate $100 a ter and sewer repairs, for example. Only he said. “Brookhaven listens to its resiyear increase. “Everyone was saying it a small stretch of Woodcliff Road would dents and that’s huge. We want a loudwas worth it,” he said. “We tried to look become the city’s responsibility, he said. er voice. We want to be part of the city’s at every scenario and talked to other Bennett said he has watched the city future.” Brookhaven residents. We don’t want to

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Community | 15

BuHi apartment association aims to be residents’ voice the city. Local governments hold meetings and invite all residents to discuss the future of Buford Highway, but Parker said many parents she knows living on Buford Highway feel too intimidated to attend because they are not doctors or lawyers.

“There is a disconnect,” Parker said. The new Buford Highway Apartment Association can serve as a resource for local governments seeking community input on Buford Highway, for example. “We could potentially provide that bridge,” she said.



Members of La Comunidad de Buford Highway (Buford Highway Apartment Association) held its first meeting in September and plans to officially launch next month. From left are Crystal Muñoz of the Latin American Association; Ali Brunner of Park Towne North Apartments; Gisela Avila, Doraville resident; Lili Cortes of Brookstone Brookhaven apartments; Dalia Alvarez, Cross Keys High School alumnus and property manager at Foxwoods Apartments; and Ruthie North of Huntington Creek Apartments.

Continued from page 1

Livable Community Initiative in Chamblee and Doraville, Oglethorpe Univerteacher Rebekah Cohen Morris. sity student DeAnna Parker said now The goal of the organization is to is the time to ensure those living along engage families who live along Buford the highway have a voice. Highway and to “create a path for res“The whole idea for the association idents to lead advocacy initiatives that comes from wanting to create a safe they deem necessary for a healthy, livspace for the community,” said Parkable community,” she said. er, 22, a Cross Keys Morris likened High School alum the new group to and Cross Keys a homeowners asFoundation Scholsociation, saying ar who once lived it would gather inin an apartment formation, provide on Buford Highresources to resiway and now lives dents, build politiin 93East Apartcal capital and enments on Shallowsure the people on ford Road, a stone’s Buford Highway throw from the corare a part of buildridor known for its ing its future. international res“This is like a taurants and busigrassroots group nesses. we need in our “There’s been PARKER, 22, community, perA CROSS KEYS HIGH SCHOOL ALUM a dynamic atmohaps now more spheric shift in than ever,” she and around Buford said. Highway to drive Plans are to ofus together,” she ficially launch the group said. in January and to tackFor example, Pulte le topics such as public Homes, based in Atlanta, is schools in the Cross Keys one of the country’s largand Chamblee clusters, est homebuilding compatransportation along Bunies. The company is seekford Highway, sidewalk ing to buy The Terraces at improvements, affordBrookhaven and Northeast able housing, public safePlaza Apartments, locatty, parks and recreational ed at 3510 Buford Highway amenities, and littering. and 3506 Buford Highway, with plans With new attention being paid to the to tear the complexes down and replace stretch of road along south Brookhavthem with pricey townhomes. The comen in recent years and the recent fundpany has not yet filed any plans with ing of the Atlanta Regional Commission

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NOV. 25 - DEC. 8, 2016


Out & About | 17





University Museum of Art, 4484 Peachtree Road N.E., Brookhaven. More information:

part of Heritage Sandy Springs’ monthly Winter Classic music indoor concert series celebrating classical, jazz, and vocal music. Tickets at door: $5 HSS members; $10 for non-members. Heritage Hall, 6110 Blue Stone Road, Sandy Springs. More information:


Saturday, Dec. 3, 10 a.m.-5 p.m.

BALLET, TAP AND JAZZ DANCE Thursday, Dec. 1, 6 p.m.

The MJCCA’s J Dance Company will perform original ballet, jazz and tap dance choreography at a performance showcase. A second performance is set for 2 p.m. Sunday, Dec. 4. Tickets are $8 for the community, $5 for members. MJCCA’s Morris and Rae Frank Theatre at Zaban Park, 5342 Tilly Mill Road, Dunwoody. Tickets:

COMFORT AND JOY Dec. 2 and 3, 8 p.m.

Atlanta Gay Men’s Chorus kicks off the holiday season with a festive choral performance that will include a first act comprised of new works and arrangements of old favorites written specifically for gay men’s choruses. Tickets: $15. The Cathedral of St. Philip. 2744 Peachtree Road, Buckhead. More information: voicesofnote. org.

ATLANTA CONCERT BAND HOLIDAY CONCERT Mt. Vernon Presbyterian Church presents the Atlanta Concert Band for its annual Holiday Concert. Free. Mt. Vernon Presbyterian Church Sanctuary, 471 Mt. Vernon Hwy., Sandy Springs. More information: contact John Arnold at 404-358-1966.


Dec. 11, 4 p.m. The Dunwoody United Methodist Church Chancel Choir, led by Rev. C.G. Walden III, brings new life to your favorite Christmas music. In the church sanctuary, 1548 Mt. Vernon Road, Dunwoody. Free. For more information:

GERMAN CHRISTMAS MARKET Saturday, Dec. 3, 11:30 a.m. - 5 p.m.

The 2016 German Christmas Market offers food and drink, live entertainment, Christmas craft activities for kids, a photo opportunity with Christkindl and St. Nikolaus, a large choice of gift items, and much more. Atlanta International School, 2890 North Fulton Drive, Buckhead.

Saturday, Dec. 3, 7-11 p.m.

HERITAGE WINTER CLASSIC Sunday, Dec. 11, 4:30-6:30 p.m.

Indulge in the fine tunes of Joe Gransden with special guest Theresa Hightower as

This free event features musical performances, visits with Santa, Christmas & Hanukkah crafts, refreshments, lighting of the Christmas tree and a Hanukkah display. The city is also holding its first Wreath Contest, and winning entries will be displayed at city facilities. Deadline for submission is Dec. 3, and winners will be announced at Light Up Brookhaven. Attendees are encouraged to bring a new, unwrapped gift for Toys for Tots. Blackburn Park, 3493 Ashford-Dunwoody Road. More information: brookhavenga. gov or call 404-637-0508.

Dec. 9 and 16, 5:30-9:30 p.m.


Sunday, Dec. 11, 4-5 p.m.

Thursday, Dec. 8, 6-8 p.m.


Sunday, Dec. 11, 4 p.m.

SWINGIN’ IN THE HOLIDAYS WITH THE BRENT RUNNELS TRIO Join The Brent Runnels Trio for a festive afternoon of music in the Oglethorpe University Museum of Art. The trio features Brent Runnels on piano, Ben Bailey on drums and Kevin Smith on bass. Tickets $10; free for OUMA members. Oglethorpe

Meet talented entrepreneurs and local vendors selling holiday gifts galore. Visit the Nature Store for eco-friendly gifts, nature-related toys and games, and nature-related books. Free. Chattahoochee Nature Center, 9135 Willeo Road, Roswell. Information:


Welcome the holiday season with the Jambalaya Cajun Band, sponsored by the Atlanta Cajun Zydeco Association. A dance follows a free dance lesson from 7-8 p.m. Tickets: $18 adults, $5 students, $14 active military. Dorothy Benson Center, 6500 Vernon Woods Drive, Sandy Springs. More information:

Stroll along candlelit wooded trails connecting decorated historic homes such as The Smith Family Farm and the Swan House. Festive activities, a Holiday Market, and a visit with Santa are among highlights at the Atlanta History Center, which aims to take you back in time this holiday season. 130 W. Paces Ferry Road, Atlanta. Tickets: $10 members; $15 nonmembers; $8 for children. Purchase and information at


Celebrate the holiday season with Mediterranean cuisine, an international dinner auction, jewelry and other items for sale by local venders and a gently-used book sale. Congregation Or VeShalom. 1681 North Druid Hills Road, Brookhaven.

GLOBAL GIFT MARKET Sunday, Dec. 11, 12:30-5 p.m.

Just in time for holiday gift-giving, CoveContinued on page 18

COMMUNITIES OF FAITH Northwest Presbyterian Church

18 | Out & About ■ Continued from page 4 nant Presbyterian Church will host its popular Global Gift Market in the church’s Fellowship Hall. Expect hand-crafted gifts, jewelry, home décor, accessories and more for sale from Haiti and around the world, along with fair trade food products and baskets. Proceeds will support the efforts of Ten Thousand Villages and the LaGonave Haiti Partnership. Covenant Presbyterian Church.. 2461 Peachtree Road, Buckhead.


For the 75th anniversary of Pearl Harbor, Pulitzer Prize-winning reporter Steve Twomey has penned a book about the 12 days leading up to the Japanese attack — the warnings, clues, and missteps. He’ll give a lecture about his book at the Atlanta History Center, 130 W. Paces Ferry Road, Buckhead. Reservations required. Reserve tickets online: Atlanta History Admission: $5 members, $10 non-members.

At Holy Innocents’ Episcopal School, students are discovering everything, except their limits. All-School Open House Saturday, Dec. 3 11 a.m.

A college-preparatory school for students 3 years old through 12th Grade. Schedule your tour today. Visit

LECTURE: THE CONUNDRUM OF NAZI-ERA ART Wednesday, Dec. 7, 7-8 p.m.

Dr. Glenn Sharfman, provost and vice president for academic affairs at Oglethorpe University and a historian with a research interest in Holocaust and Jewish history, sheds light on the conundrum of Nazi-era art. Tickets: $5 general admission; free with Petrel Pass or OUMA member-

ship. Oglethorpe University Museum of Art, 4484 Peachtree Road N.E., Brookhaven. Information: event/lecture-nazi-art-degenerate-art-rather-see/.


Children of all ages are invited to participate in a workshop with Davio’s Atlanta Pastry Chef Qiana Davis as she teaches guests to build personalized gingerbread houses. The event benefits Toys for Tots. Admission is $40 per child, adult admission free. Each child will receive one gingerbread house to decorate, with decorations included, as well as afternoon snacks prepared by Davio’s Executive Chef Timothy Magee. Reservations required. Davio’s Phipps Plaza, Phipps Plaza, 3500 Peachtree Road, Buckhead. More information: 404-844-4810 or email to secure your seat.

WINTER DADDY-DAUGHTER DANCE Sunday, Dec. 11, 5:30-7:30 p.m.

Girls in grades Pre-K to 6 are invited to dress up in semi-formal attire and dance the night away with a “date” — their father, uncle, older brother, etc. Prizes, dinner and dancing are included. Donations of winter coats will be collected. Tickets: community $50/pair, MJCCA members $35/pair. MJCCA Zaban Park, 5342 Tilly Mill Road, Dunwoody. Contact: Ilana Schlam, 678-8123727,

NOV. 25 - DEC. 8, 2016

| 19

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20 | Education ■

Justice Michael

North Springs Charter High School, senior

Open House Sunday, December 4th 1:00 to 3:00 p.m. Register now at

DISCOVER GALLOWAY At Galloway, students (age 3-grade 12) are inspired to be fearless learners, to embrace challenges, and to discover more about themselves and the world around them.

Justice Michael has had a passion for music throughout his life. He started by playing on pots and pans as a baby. Justice has now been playing the drums for 14 years and has been playing the piano for two. Along with his brother and friends, he formed a funk/fusion band called Anonymous Da Band when Justice was only 9. Anonymous Da Band has won attention locally. The band played an 80-minute show at the Atlanta Jazz Festival, an annual festival celebrating jazz musicians. Anonymous Da Band played the festival last summer, and released their premier album, “The Odyssey.” They’ve also opened shows at the Mablehouse Amphitheatre for performers such as Chrisette Michele, Na-

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jee, Brian Simpson, and Pieces of a Dream, Justice said. ”The special thing about this band is the overwhelming humble spirit that surrounds them – hence the name Anonymous,” the Atlanta Jazz Festival

Standout Student

Justice Michael


said. “Each member is a master of his own instrument and they come together in perfection to share their awesome talents.” Beyond the success of his band, Justice has also performed individually in iconic venues. He competed in 2010 at the Amateur Night at the historic Apollo Theater in New York, where he took first place in the child star division, according to his web page, and he has provided half-time entertainment at an Atlanta Hawks game. In addition to his achievements outside of school, he continually contributes talent and service to the band program at North Springs Charter High School. He helps with the new music technology class and recording studio, lending his expertise and time to the music program. This summer, Justice attended Berklee College of Music’s Five Week Performance program in Boston, where he was awarded a scholarship for next fall. Justice also sees himself composing and producing music for other artists in the future. Along with his passion for drumming and music, Justice also enjoys gourmet cooking, ping pong, and deep sea fishing.

What’s next?

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Justice plans to continue studying music next fall at the Berklee College of Music in Boston. He plans to study drums and performance and pursue his dreams of touring as a professional musician.

Coupon valid for $5.00 off retailer’s suggestedretail price per gallon of up to 5 gallons of Aura® Interior, Aura® Bath & Spa, ben® Interior, Natura® andRegal® Select Interior. Redeemable only at participating retailers. Must present this original coupon to red eem - no copies will be allowed . Limit one per customer. Prod ucts may vary from store to store. Subject to availability. Retailer reserves the right to cancel this offer at any time without notice. Cannot be combinedwith any other offers.. Coupon expires 12/31/2016.

This article was reported and rewritten by Olivia Koenig, a student at Riverwood International Charter School.

Vi s i t u s t o d ay :





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NOV. 25 - DEC. 8, 2016

Classifieds | 21

Reporter Classifieds

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SERVICES AVAILABLE Home Tending – Regular inspections of your unoccupied property. Call Charles, 404-2290490. Driveways & Walkways – Replaced or repaired. Masonry, grading, foundations repaired, waterproofing and retaining walls. Call Joe Sullivan 770-616-0576.


Matthew’s Handy Services – Small jobs and chores are my specialties. Shelves, organizers, carpentry, drywall, painting, and plumbing. Member of BBB – 404-547-2079 Email: Quinn Windows – Family owned and operated. Windows & home remodeling since 1980. or call 770-939-5634.

HELP WANTED Atronix Engineering, Inc. – Seeks a Controls Engineer to: Participate in the design and implementation of future control systems, system integration and implementation for new equipment and processes - designing Control System Architectures; Provide support to project teams, relative to design standards, responsible for installation, commissioning and validation of control systems; Making programming changes to PLCs (Allen-Bradley, Modicon, Siemens) under supervision of a senior engineer; Making programming changes to HMI systems under supervision of senior engineer; Troubleshoot and debug control systems and programs; Provide standby support for automated systems; Operate computer-assisted engineering or design software or equipment to perform engineering tasks; Confer with engineers, customers, or others to discuss existing or potential engineering projects or products; Design, implement, maintain, or improve electrical instruments, equipment, facilities, components, products, or systems for commercial, industrial, or domestic purposes. Must have Master’s Degree in Engineering. Please send resumes to Attn: Sarah Campanelli, 3100 Medlock Bridge Rd. Suite 110, Norcross, GA 30071.

Commercial Real Estate Services – Have a Commercial Building to Sell or Lease? Call Rick 678-209-3100. Proven local results.

CEMETERY PLOTS Three mausoleum crypts – Arlington Memorial Park, valued at $10K each. All reasonable offers considered. Contact John at 334-244-6808.

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22 | Public Safety ■

Police Blotter / Brookhaven From Brookhaven Police reports dated Nov. 10 through Nov. 17. The following information was pulled from Brookhaven’s Police-2-Citizen website and is presumed to be accurate.

POSSESSION AND DUI „„1600 block of North Druid Hills Road.

On Nov. 11, a woman was arrested for driving while impaired by alcohol.

Nov. 11, illegal entry to a vehicle was reported. „„1500 block of Donaldson Park Drive.

On Nov. 11, items were removed from a vehicle. „„3100 block of Buford Highway. On

Nov. 12, shoplifting was reported. „„1000 block of Lyn-

Nov. 12, a man was arrested for driving under the influence of alcohol.

moor Drive. On Nov. 13, items were removed from a vehicle.

„„3600 block of Ashford Dunwoody


„„2900 block of Buford Highway. On

Road. On Nov. 12, a man was arrested for marijuana possession. „„2600

block of Buford Highway. On Nov. 12, a man was arrested for driving under the influence of alcohol. „„3400 block of Buford High-

way. On Nov. 16, a citation was issued for possession of less than one ounce of marijuana.

THEFT A N D B U RG L A RY „„3400 block of

Buford Highway. On Nov. 10, a theft was reported. „„4000 block of Gables Drive. On Nov.

10, a theft from vehicle was reported. „„2900 block of Buford Highway. On

Nov. 10, a shoplifting incident was reported. „„1900 block of Bramblewood Drive.

On Nov. 10, a forced entry and burglary were reported. „„4000 block of Peachtree Road. Ear-

ly on Nov. 11, a robbery involving a gun was reported at a business. „„1800 block of Chamdun Place. On Nov.

11, illegal entry to a vehicle was reported. „„3800 block of Buford Highway. On

Nov. 11, theft and other offenses were reported. „„1100 block of Tennyson Place. On Nov.

11, an auto theft was reported. „„1800 block of Chamdun Place. On Nov.

11, an auto theft was reported. „„1900 block of Johnson Ferry Road. On

block of Clairmont Road. On Nov. 13, an auto was illegally entered.

„„2200 block of Lake Boulevard. On Nov.

„„1700 block of Clairmont Way. On Nov.

11, a woman was arrested for public intoxication.

16, a woman was arrested for driving without a driver’s license.

„„3300 block of Clairmont Road. On Nov.

„„4000 block of Peachtree Road. On

12, a man was arrested for theft by receiving stolen property.

Nov. 16, a woman was arrested for criminal trespass.

3300 block of Buford Highway. On Nov. 12, two men were arrested for disorderly conduct.

„„1300 block of Cliff Valley Way. On Nov.


1000 block of Barone Avenue. On Nov. 12, a man was arrested for failing to meet taillight requirements. „„

2900 block of Buford Highway. On Nov. 13, a man was arrested for criminal interference with government property. „„

„„ 3900 block of Saint Clair Court. On Nov. 13, theft from the mail was reported. „„2400 block of Briarcliff Road. On Nov.

13, theft and other offenses were reported.

„„3300 block of Clairmont Road. On Nov.

13, a man was arrested for public intoxication and consumption. „„11700 block of North Druid Hills Road.

Nov. 13, a car theft was reported.

On Nov. 13, a man was arrested for driving without insurance.

„„3300 block of Buford Highway. On

„„1500 block of Nancy Creek Drive. On

„„2900 block of Buford Highway. On

Nov. 14, items were removed from a car. „„1300 block of North Cliff Valley Way.

Nov. 13, a man was arrested for theft by taking.

On Nov. 14, forced entry and burglary to a residence were reported. Another incident was reported the next day.

„„1900 block of Dresden Drive. On Nov.

„„3000 block of Lanier Drive. On Nov. 15,

„„2600 block of Buford Highway. On

forced entry and burglary to a residence were reported.

Nov. 14, a man was arrested for simple battery.

ARRESTS „„2700 block of Buford Highway. On

Nov. 10, a man was arrested for driving without a license. „„1800 block of Corporate Boulevard.

On Nov. 10, a man was arrested for simple battery. Another was arrested for resisting arrest. „„3100 block of Buford Highway. On

Nov. 10, a man was arrested for obstruction and interference. „„East Roxboro Road. On Nov. 11, a man

was arrested for driving with no insurance. „„4300 block of Peachtree Road. On Nov.

11, a man was arrested for driving with suspended registration.

14, a woman was arrested for driving with a revoked license.

„„2400 block of Briarcliff Road. On

Nov. 14, a man was arrested for theft by deception. „„3300 block of Buford

Highway. On Nov. 14, a woman was arrested for driving without a driver’s license. „„3200 block of Buford

17, a man was arrested for driving without a license. „„2800 block of Clairmont Road. On

Nov. 17, a man was arrested for improper use of a dealer tag. „„2800 block of Buford Highway. On

Nov. 17, in separate incidents, two women were arrested for driving without driver’s licenses.

OT H E R I N C I D E N T S „„2700 block of Skyland Drive. On Nov.

10, fraudulent activity was reported. „„2900 block of Clairmont Road. On

Nov. 10, simple assault was reported. „„3200 block of Osborne Road. On Nov.

10, financial identity fraud was reported. „„3600 block of Ashford-Dunwoody

Road. On Nov. 11, damage to private property was reported. „„1600 block of Druid Hills Road. On

Nov. 12, damage to private property was reported. „„2900 block of Clairmont Road. On

Nov. 12, forgery was reported. „„3700 block of Ashford-Dunwoody

Road. On Nov. 12, simple assault was reported. „„4000 block of Summit Boulevard. On

Nov. 12, a missing person was located. 1700 block of Briarwood Road. On Nov. 12, simple assault was reported.


„„ 1800 block of Corporate Boulevard. On Nov. 12, aggravated stalking was reported.

Highway. On Nov. 14, a man was arrested for driving without a driver’s license.

„„ 2400 block of Briarcliff Road. On Nov. 13, a hit-and-run accident was reported.

„„3900 block of Buford Highway. On

„„3200 block of Buford Highway. On

Nov. 16, a man was arrested for driving without a driver’s license. Also, a man was arrested for driving without insurance.

Nov. 14, simple assault was reported. „„2400 block of Briarcliff Road. On Nov.

15, a simple assault was reported. BK

NOV. 25 - DEC. 8, 2016

City awarded state grant dedicated to pedestrian safety BY DYANA BAGBY

Brookhaven City Council voted Nov. 9 to accept a $64,056.74 grant from the Governor’s Office of Highway Safety to fund a safety officer and a community-wide pedestrian safety initiative. “We are pleased that this grant will afford us the ability to have an officer on staff that will dedicate time and expertise to pedestrian safety,” said Brookhaven Police Chief Gary Yandura in a press release. As part of the one-year renewable grant, the city will immediately hire a new officer dedicated to pedestrian safety. While the grant covers all salary, benefits, specialized training and an allowance towards equipment, the city will need to purchase a vehicle for the officer, according to city documents. Estimated cost to the city for the police vehicle and additional equipment for a full time officer is $25,000. “While the city has seen success in reducing accidents, it has necessitated pulling officers from other duties. The addition of a full-time, dedicated safety officer will allow for more efficient allocation of resources, and the launch of a community-wide, integrated pedestrian safety initiative,” according to a memo from Patty Hansen, director of Fund Development. Aspects of the pedestrian safety initiative include having the dedicated officer speak directly to citizens about using crosswalks and talk to motorists who fail to yield for pedestrians. There will also be at least two pedestrian safety events a month. According to an application for the grant, Brookhaven has experienced “a number of pedestrians hit by auto-

mobiles. In fact, 20 percent of all injury crashes reported since 2014 were pedestrians hit by an automobile. Of these crashes, two resulted in pedestrians being killed and several more being seriously injured.” In response to the fatalities and pedestrians being struck by cars, the Brookhaven Police Department enacted several pedestrian safety campaigns, including crosswalk enforcement and social media campaigns. Also, crosswalks were updated and, when possible, officers patrolled areas to assist with pedestrians crossing busy streets. The many pedestrians on Buford Highway were cited in the police department’s application for the grant, which notes that the area in the southernmost part of Brookhaven is the most densely concentrated residential population in the city. The overwhelming majority of people in the area either walk or use public transportation, the application said. The 2.9-mile stretch of Buford Highway includes 21 apartment complexes, 11 bars, dozens of restaurants and Northeast Plaza, a strip-mall and shopping center area with more than 20 businesses, according to the application. The application notes that Peachtree Road is also, like Buford Highway, a main thoroughfare where the Brookhaven/Oglethorpe MARTA station is located. The presence of Oglethorpe University and nine apartment complexes in the area contributes to heavy pedestrian traffic, as do Town Brookhaven and its numerous businesses, according to the application. The application notes that joggers and bicyclists frequent the heavily-traveled Ashford-Dunwoody Road and Johnson Ferry Road.


The Brookhaven Police Department will host a community awareness event for adults on child sex trafficking in the city and state on Dec. 11 from 3:45 p.m. to 6 p.m. at Brookhaven Christian Church, 4500 Peachtree Road N.E. The event includes the viewing of the 90-minute dramatic film “8 Days,” about a 16-year-old girl forced into sex trafficking and the fight by her family and friends to rescue her. The movie will be followed by a panel discussion and case-study assessment by the DeKalb County District Attorney’s Office. This event is intended for those 16 years of age and older due to the serious nature of the content. “This awareness event is critical to help reduce the demand. Without demand, we can eliminate the supply, which is our precious children in Brookhaven, children across the state of Georgia, and our nation,” said Greg Chevalier, director of outreach at Brookhaven Christian, in a press release. Added Brookhaven Chief Gary Yandura, “Brookhaven is continuing to invest money and resources into collapsing this problem. We are appreciative of partners such as Brookhaven Christian Church that support us in our efforts.” For more information or questions about this film or event, contact Chevalier at or at 678-612-7652 or visit RSVP to attend. Attendance is limited to 120 participants. BK

Public Safety | 23


A DeKalb County man was sentenced to life in prison for raping and sodomizing an 8-month-old family member in December 2014, according to the DeKalb County District Attorney’s Office. Jose Ambrocio Duarte pleaded guilty Nov. 10 in DeKalb County Superior Court to rape, aggravated child molestation, aggravated sexual battery, aggravated battery, incest and cruelty to children in the first degree, prosecutors said. Judge Sondeana Morris sentenced him to three life sentences to run concurrently, according to a press release. Duarte was babysitting the 8-month-old and several other children in December 2014 when the parents came home and found the infant lethargic and nauseated, according to the district attorney’s office. The baby also had blood in her diaper, according to the release. Brookhaven police were called to the scene and officers said they found Duarte with blood on his hands. Helater confessed to raping and sodomizing the baby in a bedroom while her siblings were in another room, according to prosecutors. Their swift action led to the conviction, according to DeKalb District Attorney Robert James. “Officers did a phenomenal job of collecting and preserving the evidence,” James said of the Brookhaven Police Department in a statement. “Because of their efforts, we were able to secure crucial DNA evidence that conclusively tied the defendant to these crimes.”


Two teachers at Brookhaven’s Cross Keys High School are under investigation following reports they threatened students about being deported. DeKalb County Schools received reports of the alleged threats Nov. 10 and removed the teachers from the school. “The two teachers in question were removed immediately from the school pending completion of the investigation,” said DeKalb Schools spokesperson Quinn Hudson in a statement to CBS46. “Threatening, abusive behavior will not be tolerated in any way and such behavior will be dealt with without delay.” Cross Keys is on North Druid Hills Road in the Buford Highway corridor, which is home to an extremely diverse community of people who have immigrated from around the globe.



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11-25-16 Brookhaven Reporter  
11-25-16 Brookhaven Reporter