Magnolia Summer 2013

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From the Porch Swing

Our region is home to such an amazing array of women, from those in leadership roles to those on the front line of local services and agencies getting things done. Magnolia, in our celebration of local women, captures the faces of our community each season. In this summer edition, our showcase portraits spotlight women who represent Floyd and Polk counties to the outside world in some way. They range from 21-year-old Miss Rome Cierra Jackson, who’s represented Rome for about six months, to Linda Smith, who has represented Rome for part of three decades at the Greater Rome Convention and Visitors Bureau. Other notables include Rachel Rogers, who through Shorter University has been key to hosting the NAIA national football championship here in Rome for the past several years and is now helping the school transition to the NCAA; Ellie Mahon, who roasts and serves up fresh java with a smile to all who come into her Swift & Finch coffee shop on Broad Street; Christa Jackson, who is the face of Cave Spring in so many ways, especially when she dons her homemade Lady Liberty costume for the popular Independence Day parade each July; and Kim Scoggins who runs Polk Medical Center and is helping plan for the new hospital from the ground up. We are fortunate that our community is so well represented by smart, impressive women — from our esteemed Rome Mayor Evie McNiece, who was just named to the board of directors for the Georgia Municipal Association, to Gretchen Kuglar Corbin,

who has held several key state positions and is making headlines as the new Commissioner for Georgia’s Department of Community Affairs. These ladies are all official representatives of our local communities in some way. But the truth is we are each the faces of our community each day as we move through life, whether or not we have a job or title that makes it official. That happens anytime we have visitors to the region who come into our places of businesses, stroll our streets as tourists or perhaps visit local churches, schools and organizations. How they are received and treated makes a lasting impression of our area. If they get a big dose of our well-known warm Southern hospitality or perhaps a kind gesture or congenial conversation, that will color how they think of Rome, Cave Spring, Cedartown or Northwest Georgia. Our CVB works hard to sell Rome to visitors. Our Chambers of Commerce work hard to sell Floyd and Polk to business and industries. Our colleges bring thousands to Rome from elsewhere each and every year and many from the tri-state area come here for our state-of-the-art health care. So whether you are chatting with someone in a waiting room, in a grocery store or at a ballgame, we need to all remember that we are not just being kind and welcoming human beings, we are each in her own way representing our communities. Charlotte Atkins, Editor

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