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Business Link G r e a t e r H a l l C h a m b e r . c o m

Chairman's Column page 2 Industry of the Year Awards page 4 Small Business of the Month page 5 Upcoming Events page 6 Member Announcements page 10 Ribbon Cuttings page 11 New Members page 13 Leadership Programs page 14 Arbor Day Celebration page 15

February 22 EXPO supports local economy As a part of the Greater Hall Chamber's mission, the Buy Local program is a pro-active and practical approach for connecting the businesses of Gainesville-Hall County with the buying power of the local community. We believe enhancing local spending and providing more opportunities for our businesses to connect with consumers is critical to helping our local economy not only survive but thrive! Exciting News! The Chamber's Annual Buy Local Business Expo and Safe & Green Expo are joining forces this year. Buy Local showcases businesses in Greater Hall County and offers great businessto-business networking. Safe & Green pulls together industry representatives for connection to environmentally friendly services and safety program initiatives for the workplace. Insurance Office of America is the title sponsor for the event on Friday, February 22 at the Gainesville Civic Center from 9:00 a.m. - 2:00 p.m. The Gainesville Civic Center is a new venue this year! The Expo on February 22 is open to all local business owners, business representatives and community members in North Georgia. Open to the public with a $10 admission fee. With two events in one location on one day, attendees receive an all-access pass to both events including some 100 exhibitors, with up to eight speakers and lunch included... all for just $10! Exhibit space still available. Member Exhibit, $200; Non-member Exhibit, $350; Non-Profit, $100; Safe & Green Room Exhibit, $150. Electricity is available for an additional fee. Exhibitors will be able to utilize business-to-business services, while exchanging business leads and developing professional relationships. Complete an Exhibitor Registration Form online at For event details, contact Michelle Wiley, 770-532-6206. Email:

Exhibit Space Still Available!

Buy Local Expo – Safe & Green Friday, February 22, 2013

Gainesville Civic Center • 9:00 a.m. - 2:00 p.m.

Open to the Public – $10 Admission Fee

Save the Date Tuesday, February 12 Small Business Success Seminar Thursday, February 21 Business After Hours Friday, February 26 South Hall Business Coalition


A Publication of the Greater Hall Chamber of Commerce

February 5, 2013 • Greater Hall Chamber of Commerce

From the Chairman

Existing Industry Economic Impact


The Greater Hall Chamber of Commerce celebrated the economic impact of industries in Gainesville-Hall County at the 4th Annual Industry Appreciation Luncheon last month. In addition to honoring the 2013 industries of the year, the Chamber recognized the many industries that have chosen to locate or expand in our area. Manufacturers, processors and distributors were honored for excelling in their economic impact, corporate responsibility and workforce excellence. This program gives the Chamber an opportunity for us to show our support for economic development. From new industries locating here to long-time employers expanding their facilities and creating even more jobs, it's clear that Gainesville-Hall County is a great place to live and work. Randall Frost Sponsored by Lanier Technical College, industry of the year awards Stewart, Melvin & Frost 2012-2013 Chairman, Greater Hall were presented to Zebra Technologies Corp. of Oakwood in the small Chamber of Commerce category of companies with 0-50 employees, Bitzer US Inc. of Oak-

wood in the medium category of 51-200 employees and Kubota Manufacturing of America Corp. of Gainesville in the large category of 201 or more employees. Other special recognition included Albert International of Gainesville for environmental stewardship, Poly Enterprises for safety recognition, SKF USA Inc. for employer recognition and Kipper Tool Co. for corporate citizenship recognition. (See profiles on page 4.) Jackie Rohosky, assistant commissioner of the Technical College System of Georgia and head of Quick Start, Georgia's workforce training program, was keynote speaker. In her remarks, she noted that Gainesville-Hall is a strong customer in statewide economic development. “This area is extremely strong,” Rohosky said. “Look at the industry base, we’re out here all the time. The thing that is interesting about your area is it’s been consistent. You’ve consistently attracted manufacturers, and I attribute a lot of that to your economic development team.” Shelley Davis, Chamber Vice President of Existing Industry said, “We utilize this event to not only show appreciation for our business and industry but also to celebrate their growth," Davis said. “Ninety percent of our applicants of manufacturers and processors have expanded this year and made capital investments. Seventy percent have hired this year, so we’re really looking forward to 2013.” Gainesville-Hall County is home to 47 Fortune 500 firms, more than 300 manufacturing and processing concerns, and 41 international companies representing 15 foreign countries. In 20122013, 24 new and expanded industries created 1,660 jobs, retained 1530 existing jobs and generated $203 million in capital investment for Gainesville-Hall County.

Russell Vandiver Honored for Service Lanier Technical College President Russell Vandiver (center) was recognized for his 37 years service to the college. Roger Slayton, Chairman of the Board of Lanier Technical College; Jackie Rohosky, Assistant Commissioner, Technical College System of Georgia, Economic Development, and Kit Dunlap, President & CEO, Greater Hall Chamber, presented Russell a plaque during the Chamber's Industry Appreciation Luncheon on January 23. During Russell's career, some 50,000+ jobs have been created in Northeast Georgia. Russell will retire in March 2013.

Business Link Volume 19 Issue 2 mcKemie West, editor • email: Greater Hall Chamber of Commerce

2012-2013 executive Committee Chair, VISION 2030 Carl Romberg, Citisco meg Nivens, Executive Director

Chairman Randall Frost Stewart, Melvin & Frost

Vice Chair, Government Affairs David lee, Jackson EMC

Chairman Elect Dixie Truelove Truelove Dairy

Co-Chairs, HALLmark Vice Chair, Marketing and David Abee, Regions Bank Communications Jullie King, The Longstreet Clinic Perry Barnett, Rushton & Co. Paul Chambers, AT&T Vice Chair, Membership Senior Advisor Development Philip Wilheit, sr., Wilheit Jimbo Floyd, Turner Wood & Packaging Smith Insurance

Treasurer Jody lail, Chattahoochee Bank of Georgia Vice Chair, Economic Development Chris Braswell PB Property Management

Vice Chair, South Hall Council Immediate Past Chairman Jay Jacobs, Jacobs Media Corp. Brian Cantel, Cantel Wealth Management President & CEO Kit Dunlap, Greater Hall Vice Chair, Community Vice Chair, Education Chamber of Commerce Development elisabeth Baldwin Raymond James/Morgan Keegan Deborah mack, Volunteer

Board of Directors 2012-2013 emily Bagwell, Gainesville Redevelopment Auth.

mike miller, Mayor, City of Flowery Branch

William Bagwell, Jr., Homestead Investments

Dr. Randy Pierce, University of North Georgia

Karen Baston, Sperry Van Ness

James Nix, Mayor, City of Clermont

Col. James Benson, Riverside Military Academy

Tony Paramore, Gainesville Paint & Design

William H. Beyer, NEGA Heart Center

larry Poole, Mayor, City of Gillsville

Carol Burrell, NEGA Health System

spence Price, The Adams Companies

stacey Dickson, Lake Lanier CVB

Will schofield, Hall County Schools

Danny Dunagan, Mayor City of Gainesville

Dr. ed schrader, Brenau University

Dr. merrianne Dyer, Gainesville City Schools

Joyce stephens, United Community Bank

sam evans, City of Oakwood Councilman

Dennis stockton, The Times

Andi Farmer, Milton Martin Honda

Grier Todd, Lake Lanier Islands Resort

Kathy Fauscett, Keller Williams Realty

milton Turner, Mayor, City of Lula

Tony Funari, Mayor Pro-tem, Town of Braselton

melissa Tymchuk, NEGA Health System

lance Gardner, Georgia Power

Russell Vandiver, Lanier Technical College

Rob Geoffroy, The Atlanta Falcons

Dr. mary Watkins, Watkins Total Health Care

John Geyer, J Geyer Advertising

Davis White, Full Media

mike Giles, Georgia Poultry Federation

Darrell Wiley, J&J Foods

Dr. Bonita Jacobs, University of North Georgia

Philip Wilheit, Jr., Wilheit Packaging Materials

Dr. John Kennedy, Lakeview Academy

Bob Willis, Willis Investment Counsel

Dick mecum, Chairman, Hall Co. Commission

Associate Directors 2012-2013 Phil Bonelli, Wells Fargo

Brian Hollis, Hollis Transport Agency

John Breakfield, Breakfield & Associates

lane Jones, Highland Mountain Beverage

Burton Brown, Woodmen of the World

megan martin, American Security Shredding

Namon Collins, Allstate Insurance

Charles White, Community Volunteer

Brett Fowler, Turner Wood & Smith

emily Whitehead, Milton Martin Toyota

Joy Griffin, United Way of Hall County

staff Executive Kit Dunlap, President/CEO Joy sims, Executive Assistant

South Hall Council Kit Dunlap, President/CEO michelle Wiley, Membership Vice President

Economic Development Tim evans, Vice President shelley Davis, Vice President Existing Industry Jean mcCullough, Project Manager

Community Development Robin Halstead, Vice President

Finance & Operations David umberson, Vice President Finance and Human Resources Education & Workforce Development Dana miller, Vice President Government Affairs Kit Dunlap, President/CEO Joy sims, Executive Assistant

VISION 2030 meg Nivens, Executive Director Membership Development michelle Wiley, Vice President Kara Tate, Membership Coordinator Marketing & Communications Kemie West, Business Link Editor/Consultant Greater Hall Chamber Welcome Center Robin Halstead, Manager

February 5, 2013 • Greater Hall Chamber of Commerce

Economic Development

Greater Hall Chamber's 4th Annual Industry of the Year Awards


Over 200 industry executives and guests attended the 4th Annual Industry Appreciation Luncheon in January. Sponsored by Lanier Technical College, the event included the presentation of Industry of the Year awards to small, medium and large industries in the Greater Hall area, recognizing their economic impact on the community, corporate responsibility and workforce excellence. Industry of the Year - Small Category (0 - 50 Employees) Zebra Technologies Corporation - Pao Sengkhammee, Plant Manager Zebra Technologies Corporation, a bar coding label manufacturer, located to Oakwood South Industrial Park in 2007 to a 20,000-square foot facility with 10 employees. The facility quickly grew and in 2012 expanded to 40,000-square feet investing over $1.5 million in space, new automated equipment and additional jobs. Now with 38 employees, Zebra manufactures bar coding labels for retail, healthcare, manufacturing, automotive and other industries. The company credits its success to its location and proximity to major customers, the shipping corridor, availability of quality workforce, and the strong support for manufacturing by local officials. Zebra initiated the implementation of a Flexographic Printing program with their Partner in Education, Johnson High School, to the tune of $90,000 to develop the workforce of tomorrow. Zebra was the winner of the Greater Hall Chamber of Commerce 2012 Environmental Stewardship Recognition Award. Industry of the Year - Medium Category (51 - 200 Employees) BITZER US, Inc. - Mike Duffy, Plant Manager Established in Oakwood in 2001, Bitzer is an industrial compressor and pressure vessel manufacturer with worldwide distribution and sales. In the past year, Bitzer has invested $9 million in purchasing land, constructing a new building and investing in new equipment. Bitzer’s workforce has increased by 47% by adding 45 new jobs and currently has 125 employees. The Bitzer corporation ranks among the leading manufacturers of refrigerant compressors and some 3,000 employees in more than 90 countries stand behind this success. Bitzer partners with Good News at Noon and sponsors regular coat and food drives. Environmental and safety efforts are key to Bitzer's continuous improvement focus in their recycling program, and reduction of electricity and water usage. Bitzer is a Certified Drug Free Workplace. Industry of the Year - Large Category (201+ Employees) Kubota Manufacturing of America Corp. Henry Kubota, President and Phil Sutton, Chief Administrative Officer Established in Gainesville in 1988 and now celebrating its 25th anniversary, Kubota Manufacturing of America produces high quality lawn and garden tractors, subcompact tractors and rough terrain vehicles. Kubota currently has 1,015 employees and made significant investments in 2012 by adding an assembly line with 95 additional employees for a completely new line of consumer turf products and by enhancing local research and development and product testing capability. Kubota is involved in several community projects including United Way, Georgia Mountain Food Bank, Leadership Hall County and the Hall County Farm Bureau. The company provides Eagle Ranch with turf equipment for their use and by mowing the large areas for them. Kubota saves Hall County over $30,000 annually in grass cutting contracts by giving Kubota access to local parks and utility sites for turf product testing. In 2012, the company adopted the brand statement "For Earth, For Life" and is committed to the cause of protecting the environment, heath and safety of our employees with a robust program. Kubota is a Certified Drug Free Workplace and proud to announce ISO 14001 certified, a strict environmental management standard, in 2012. Kubota is currently sponsoring 18 interns from Woods Mill High School and Lanier Academy. Kubota is known its industry leading wages and benefits including 100% preventative medical and dental care for members and eligible dependents. Employees take advantage of the tuition reimbursement program and enjoy annual family programs including an open house, family picnic and Christmas party. Employees participate in improving quality and productivity with Quality & Kaizen awards and two hourly members recently traveled to Japan to participate in the global skills competition.

Industry of the Year Award Recipients (L-R): Shelley Davis, VP, Existing Industry, Chamber; Pao Sengkhammee, Plant Manager, Zebra Technologies; Mike Duffy, Plant Manager, Bitzer; Henry Kubota, President, Kubota Manufacturing of America; Tim Evans, VP Economic Development, Chamber. Henry Kubota spoke about the company's opening in Gainesville in 1988. Kubota Manufacturing of America is celebrating 25 years, now with 1,000+ employees.

Event speaker was Jackie Rohosky, Assistant Commissioner, Technical College System of Georgia, and head of Quick Start.

Industry Recognition Awards (L-R): Shelley Davis, Chamber; Rainer Behrendt, President, Albert International; Greg Ours, President, Poly Enterprises; Jean-Luc Gardelle, General Manager, SKF USA Inc.; Danny Sears, Vice President, Kipper Tool; Tim Evans, Chamber. Albert International, manufacturer of bulbs, pumps, syringes and other products used in medical fields received this year’s Environmental Stewardship Award. Poly Enterprises, a molded vinyl manufacturer, received Safety Recognition. SKF USA, a ball bearings manufacturer, received Employer Recognition and Kipper Tool, an assembling and distributor of custom tool kits to business, industry and the military, was recognized for Corporate Citizenship.

Thank You Industry Appreciation Sponsors Title Sponsor: Lanier Technical College Jackson EMC – Pattillo Industrial Real Estate – Georgia Power Rushton & Company – Primary Care Clinics of Georgia Wilheit Packaging – NEGA Occupational Medicine – Wells Fargo Spherion Professional Recruiting – Adams Transfer & Storage Company Electronic Sales Company – Syfan Logistics Inc.

the U.S. in the Milken Institute’s 2012 Report, jumping up 62 places from its 2011 ranking at #101. Milken Institute’s annual Best-Performing Cities report provides a data-driven, comprehensive measure of economic strength across metropolitan areas, illuminating the job, wage, and technology trends that shape prospects for success. The report provides comprehensive data on why some places in America are prospering, and some struggling – giving insight into what separates the cities that are positioned well for the future from those that are still mired in the setbacks inflicted by the financial crisis. “Gainesville-Hall County is a regional center for employment, healthcare and professional services,” said Greater Hall Chamber President and CEO Kit Dunlap. “This community has benefited from having a diversified employment base of manufacturing, services, healthcare and retail, and our pro-business climate is certainly reflected in this report.” Other notable statistics: - Gainesville-Hall County ranked 39th overall and 2nd for short term job growth. - Gainesville-Hall County is the only Georgia MSA listed in the top 50 best performers, and one of very few in the Southeastern United States. -The Milken Institute’s ranking for Gainesville-Hall County follows several years of steadily declining unemployment. - Garner Economics recently ranked Gainesville-Hall County among a very short list of 23 metro areas around the nation that had outperformed the US for unemployment for more than 2 consecutive years. For the entire report:

2 columns 4.4167 x5"

1/4 Page Ad 2 columns 4.4167 x5"

February 5, 2013 • An Advertising Supplement to The Times

1/4 Page Ad

Mellow Mushroom opened in September 2009 in the Historical Rudolph House on Green Street in Gainesville. John and Heather Bush started the business during an economic downturn, yet they believed in the product and believed in Gainesville-Hall County. "We knew that Gainesville had the local resources and Mellow Mushroom owners John and Heather Bush with growth potential to managers Anderson Dunlap and Daniel Malavenda and support a new business Chamber Membership Chairman Jimbo Floyd, Turner Wood & Smith Insurance. even in the worst of economic times," said Heather Bush. The heart of Mellow Mushroom is the staff, and the restaurant employs between 50-75 employees. Most are college students at the University of North Georgia from both campuses. Managers, Daniel Malavenda and Anderson Dunlap, are Gainesville natives and have been an integral part in the business from the beginning. The community has embraced Mellow Mushroom and business has thrived. "Opening a business in Gainesville has been an excellent investment. Working in Gainesville has been priceless," said Heather. "We thank the Chamber for this honor."

Economic Development

Gainesville, a Best Performing City Small Business of the Month Gainesville-Hall County, Georgia ranked #39 of Best Performing Small Cities in Mellow Mushroom in Gainesville


Meetings & Events

FEBRUARY 2013 Wednesday, February 6 Healthcare Committee 8:00 a.m. – Chamber

Wednesday, February 20 Lunch 'n Learn 11:45 a.m. - 1:00 p.m. – Recess

Tuesday, February 12

Friday, February 8 Economic Development Council 7:30 a.m. – Chamber

Thursday, February 21 Chamber Executive Board 11:30 a.m. - 1:00 p.m. – Chamber

Economics in Post-Election America

Tuesday, February 12 Small Business Success Seminar "Economics in Post-Election America" presented by Katie Simmons, University of North Georgia 7:45 - 9:00 a.m. – Chamber

Thursday, February 21 Business After Hours 5:00 - 7:00 p.m. – Norton Benefits Group 434 Boulevard in Gainesville (new location)

Presented by Katie Simmons, Assistant Dean of the Mike Cottrell College of Business and Interim Department Head of Economics and Finance at the University of North Georgia. Details: Jean McCullough, 770-532-6206. Email: Make reservations for this event and others online:

Tuesday, February 12 Youth Leadership Hall 8:00 a.m. - 3:00 p.m. Tuesday, February 12 Ambassador Council 3:45 - 4:45 p.m. – 2 Dog Cafe

Friday, February 22 Buy Local Expo / Safe & Green Expo 9:00 a.m. - 2:00 p.m. – Gainesville Civic Center Tuesday, February 26 South Hall Business Coalition "Update on the University of North Georgia" Presented by Dr. Bonita Jacobs, President 8:00 - 9:00 a.m. – UNG, Oakwood Campus Continuing Education Auditorium

Wednesday, February 13 Network Over Coffee 8:30 - 9:30 a.m. – OO Cafe by Oakwood Occasions (Hall County Government Center) Wednesday, February 27 Network Over Coffee 8:30 - 9:30 a.m. – Loretta's Country Kitchen Wednesday, February 13 Human Resource Council Thursday, February 28 11:45 a.m. - Luna's Restaurant Greater Hall Chamber Board of Directors Sponsored by AT&T Thursday, February 14 12:00 p.m. – Chattahoochee Country Club Chamber Chase 5K Special Registration 7:00 a.m. - 1:00 p.m. - Chamber

MARCH 2013

February 5, 2013 • Greater Hall Chamber of Commerce

Thursday, February 14 Leadership Hall County Healthcare/Community Service Program 8:00 a.m.-5:00 p.m.


Small Business Success Seminar

Friday, February 15 Annual Arbor Day Celebration 10:00 a.m. – Frances Meadows Center Tuesday, February 19 VISION 2030 Board of Directors 11:30 a.m. – Chamber Wednesday, February 20 Issues Committee 8:00 a.m. – Chamber

Wednesday, March 13 Annual Transportation Forum 11:30 a.m. - 1:00 p.m. – University of North Georgia, Gainesville Campus Thursday, March 14 Business After Hours 5:00 - 7:00 p.m. – Conditioned Air Systems Friday, March 22 Business Before Hours 7:30 - 9:00 a.m. – Milton Martin Toyota Get details and register for these and other events online at

2013 Chamber Events Wednesday, March 13: Annual Transportation Forum 11:30 a.m. - 1:00 p.m. – University of North Georgia, Gainesville Campus Wednesday, April 10: Job Fair 10:00 a.m. - 3:00 p.m. - Gainesville Civic Center Thursday, April 18: 6th Annual Chamber Chase 5K & 2 Mile Wellness Walk 6:00 p.m. – Riverside Military Academy Friday, April 26: 34th Annual Hacker's Holiday Golf Tournament 10:00 a.m. – Lake Lanier Islands Resort Thursday, May 9: 105th Greater Hall Chamber Annual Meeting & Gala 6:00 p.m. – Chattahoochee Country Club

7:45 a.m. - 9:00 a.m. at Chamber Free for Chamber Members • $15 Non-Members

Business After Hours Thursday, February 21 5:00 p.m. - 7:00 p.m. Sponsored by Norton Benefits Group 434 Boulevard in Gainesville (NEW Location) $5 Chamber Members • $15 Non-members • Cash Pot Prize! Join us for networking and great food and drink at the Norton Benefits Group new location, The Frierson House on Boulevard, on the expanded Norton Green Street Campus. For over 85 years, The Norton Agency has built its business by meeting the needs of clients and is now the largest independently owned agency in the state with a variety of products through 50 top-quality companies in personal, business, life and health insurance.

South Hall Business Coalition Thursday, February 26 University of North Georgia, Gainesville Campus Continuing Education Auditorium 8:00-8:15 a.m. Networking; 8:15-9:00 a.m. Program $5 Chamber Members; $15 Non-Members

University of North Georgia Update Dr. Bonita Jacobs, President, University of North Georgia, will provide an update on the college that is now comprised of four campuses – Cumming, Dahlonega, Gainesville and Oconee – with enrollment over 15,000 and the 7th largest institution in the University System of Georgia. Reservations, Michelle Wiley, 770-532-6206. Email:

Annual Transportation Forum Wednesday, March 13 11:30 a.m. - 1:00 p.m. University of North Georgia, Gainesville Sponsors: Rochester & Associates and Independence Bank of Georgia $15 Members • $20 Non-Members • Open to the Public • Lunch The Greater Hall Chamber's Annual Transportation Forum is open to the public with business professionals, community leaders, transportation officials and GainesvilleHall County MPO representatives. Get all the updates on area projects. Includes Lunch. Reservations required. Joy Sims, 770-532-6206. Email: Register for this event and others online:

Member Announcements February 5, 2013 • Greater Hall Chamber of Commerce


• Job Opening at the Chamber! Membership Events Director responsible for planning and directing all major events. Must have college degree. Job experience, communication, fundraising, excellent computer skills required. Send resumes: David Umberson, Greater Hall Chamber, P.O. Box 374, Gainesville, GA 30503. • Agents Brent Loggins and Trey Wood are now partners, stockholders and new vice presidents at Turner Wood & Smith Insurance, a full service independent insurance firm that has served the community for over 100 years. • Exhibit space is still available for the Chamber's Buy Local/Safe & Green Expo on Friday, February 22 at the Gainesville Civic Center. Great exposure, business-to-business networking, lead generation and much more. Email: mwiley@ • For a third year, the University of North Georgia was named to Kiplinger's Personal Finance's list of 100 best values in public colleges in the nation. The ranking cites four-year schools that combine outstanding education with economic value. • ETCON Employment Solutions announces a Professional Services Division. In addition to providing clients with the best available service in staffing needs, ETCON now offers expertise in high-end recruiting, specializing in engineering, operational management, financial services and information technologies. ETCON is committed to presenting the finest available talent and a "best value" fee structure. 770-532-8449. • Bob Norton of Norton Benefits Group announces the company's new location at 434 Boulevard, The Frierson House on Boulevard, on the expanded Norton Green Street Campus. The largest independently owned agency in the state, they offer products for over 20,000 individuals, families, and businesses in the metro area

and North Georgia. Don't miss the next Business After Hours at Norton Benefits Group on Thursday, February 21 from 5:00-7:00 p.m. • Hall County Commissioners announced Walt Davis as warden of the Hall County Correctional Institute. Davis has nearly 30 years of experience in criminal justice. Davis replaces Avery Niles, who resigned as warden last year to become the Commissioner of the Georgia Department of Juvenile Justice. • University of North Georgia's Great Decisions lecture series runs through March 7. The series explores global issues impacting our economy and world politics facilitated by the university's expert faculty members. This year's topics range Middle East realignment to energy geopolitics. Details: • Healthy Hall County is a health-based initiative for Hall County employees, their dependents and retirees. Its purpose is to create a healthier and happier work force, and all Hall County employees, their dependents and retirees receive free admission to Hall County community centers with free fitness instructional sessions and boot camps. • Chamber Chase 5K Run & 2 Mile Wellness Walk Special Registration is Thursday, February 14 at the Chamber from 7:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. Online registration begins Friday, February 15 and ends April 17. The Chamber Chase 5K Run & 2 Mile Wellness Walk is Thursday, April 18 at 6:00 p.m. at Riverside Military Academy in Gainesville. Cost is $25; $30 (after March 31). • Jimmy Cantrell, owner of Daniel’s Charters, announced that Lancer Insurance recently honored the company by awarding the Safety Excellence Award in recognition of overall safety throughout the company. In addition, Daniel's driver Ray McNeal won first place in the Georgia Motorcoach Operators Association’s

Job Fair on April 10

Employer Booth Space Now Available The Chamber's Job Fair is Wednesday, April 10 from 10:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. at the Gainesville Civic Center and is a great opportunity for both employers and job seekers. The event is OPEN TO THE PUBLIC with NO ADMISSION FEE! Employers will have a chance to meet hundreds of job candidates face-to-face during a short period of time. Employer booths are $275 ($300 with electricity) $175 for Non-Profits ($200 with electricity). For job seekers, the event provides coveted face-time and personal contact with hiring managers. The Job Fair title sponsor is Modern Woodmen of America. Additional sponsors include Express Employment Pros (Platinum), IMS Gear (Gold), Axiom Staffing Group (Silver), ZF Group (Bronze), McDonald's, Lanier Technical College, Gainesville Area Employers, WDUN and The Times. Jean McCullough, 770-532-6206.

“rodeo” where drivers throughout the state compete in both written and driving skills. • Sloan Jones, former Director of Marketing/PR for Gainesville State College is the University of North Georgia's new Director of Civic Engagement & Government Relations. Kate Maine is the Director of University Relations, responsible for public relations and marketing for the University of North Georgia. • The Quinlan Visual Arts Center and Kiwanis Club of Gainesville announce the 10th Annual Charles J. Thurmond Youth Art Scholarship Awards. Hall County and Gainesville City middle and high school students are invited to participate in the 2013 Kiwanis Visual Arts Showcase. Cash scholarships will be awarded. • Under the direction of Jack Bell, former member of the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra and a retired professor of percussion at Georgia State University, the 2013 ProMusica Concert Series offers a Piano Concert on Sunday, February 17 at 4:00 pm featuring Yoonie Han at First Baptist Church in Gainesville. Tickets: 770-9672768. • The Quinlan Visual Art Center's 35th Annual Gala Art Auction is Saturday, March 2. The black tie event includes a live and a silent auction and will honor Gainesville native Jay Kemp, the 2013 Featured Painter for the Southeastern Wildlife Exposition. Tickets are $125 per person and include the Collector's Night Champagne Preview on Thursday, February 28 at 5:30 p.m. Tickets: call 770-5362575. Online: • Braselton’s Downtown Development Authority launched a new website focusing on existing businesses and serving as an interactive tool for prospective businesses. The site contains listings of available properties and contact information.

• Randall Pugh, President & CEO of Jackson EMC, was appointed by Governor Nathan Deal to the Board of Directors of the Georgia Department of Economic Development, the state’s lead agency for attracting new business, expanding existing industry and small businesses, and tourism. • Nicole Spivey joined the GainesvilleHall Metropolitan Planning Organization (GHMPO) as Senior Transportation Planner and will be working with local, regional, state and federal planning partners. GHMPO is the intergovernmental transportation planning body for Hall County and conducts the transportation study, which is the federally mandated transportation planning process for the Gainesville Urbanized Area. • The UGA Small Business Development Center is offering a seminar "Starting a Business" on February 15 from 9:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. at Featherbone Center. Cost, $69. Dede Gossage, 770-531-5681, for more information. • The Longstreet Clinic announced that Kommerina Daling, M.D., has joined the Department of Family Medicine in Oakwood. She most recently worked at The Emory Clinic and Emory University Hospital. • WomenSource's Motivating Women: Encouraging Professional & Personal Success with Fawn Germer, best-selling author of seven books, international speaker, and four-time Pulitzer nominee, is February 12 with lunch at the Quinlan Visual Arts Center at 12 p.m. ($25 per person; $200 table of 8) and dinner at Scott’s Downtown at 6:00 p.m. ($45 per person; $400 table of 8). Cost for both: $70 per person; $600 for table (8) at both events. 770-5039060.

GOT NEWS? Email:

2013 Chamber Chase 5K

Special Registration on February 14 Chamber Chase 5K Special Registration is Thursday, February 14 at the Chamber, 230 E.E. Butler Parkway in Gainesville, from 7:00 am -1:00 pm. Online Registration begins Friday, February 15 and ends April 17. Training Passes are valid beginning Thursday, February 21. The Chamber Chase 5K & 2 Mile Wellness Walk is Thursday, April 18 at 6:00 p.m. at Riverside Military Academy in Gainesville. For sponsorship opportunities, team information or more, contact Michelle Wiley, 770-532-6206 x 115. Email:

Homestar Financial

Best Western Plus Hotel in Oakwood

Homestar Financial is a locally owned and operated mortgage lender, underwriting and funding mortgages in-house. Branch manager, Shan Ryder, has been with Homestar for five years and expanded the office by adding staff and loan originators in 2012. The Ryder team of seven experienced professionals, with over 60 years of combined experience, includes Karen Widner, Kerry Farmer, Nancy Hortman, Michele Bledsoe, Amber Price and Marti Irwin. Focusing on residential mortgages, both purchases and refinances, Homestar Financial is the #1 USDA lender in Georgia and consistently closes loans on time, normally in 30 days or less. Homestar Financial, Shan Ryder’s Office, 377 Shallowford Road, Gainesville, GA 30504. 678-971-4690.

Interactive College of Technology

Southern Property Management

Human Technologies, Inc. Ashley Brooks cuts ribbon at Human Technologies, Inc. with fellow employees Nat Banks, Julie Blackmon, Brian Buchanan, Kristin Cirelli, Cameron Colby, Abby Gary, Mark Green, Jeff Hutson, Katie Key, Kelly Smith, Alan Stallworth, local government, business, and community representatives and friends from ZF Windpower and ZF Gainesville. Founded in 1999, HTI is a multi-faceted human resource advisory firm that provides professional recruiting, industrial staffing, human resource consulting, outplacement services, and logistics/warehouse management services. They work closely with each client to create a tailored approach to solving unique staffing and human resource issues. Headquartered in Greenville, SC, the company is excited to be expanding into the Gainesville area. They are enthusiastic about growing business relationships in the community and providing local companies with exceptional human resource solutions. 3650 Mundy Mill Rd, Suite 112, Gainesville, GA 30504.

February 5, 2013 • An Advertising Supplement to The Times

In celebration of a banner year of growth and expansion, Southern Property Management (SPM) hosted Business Before Hours in January and held a ribbon cutting ceremony. Lynn Collins, owner of SPM, along with some very special assistance from her granddaughter, Sophie Harris, cut the ribbon to officially unveil the company's new office space. The renovation expanded Southern Property Management’s office from approximately 1,200 to just over 3,300 square feet. SPM has established itself as a leader in the community association industry, and plans for continued growth by consistently delivering exceptional property management services to existing clientele, while strategically earning new business as well. The company is a locally owned and operated Property Management Corporation, with clients in the extended Metro-Atlanta area, ranging from large Homeowners Associations, townhome and condominium developments, to smaller boutique communities and rental property owners. Southern Property Management, 4211 Mundy Mill Place in Oakwood.

Katrina James, Instructor; Bernetta Mitchell, Lead Instructor; Bob Faver, Director of Education; Joe Spinello, Employment Assistance Coordinator, cut ribbon at Interactive College of Technology (ICT). Ranked one the most affordable programs in the nation by the US Dept. of Education, ICT is accredited and offers both associate degree and diploma programs for high-demand careers. ICT is a hands-on learning environment with flexible schedules, day and evening classes, and small class sizes. Programs are combined with real-world training in accounting, IT, HVAC, business, medical coding/billing/office administration. 2323-C Browns Bridge Road, Gainesville, GA 30504. 678-450-0550.

Ribbon Cuttings

Ed Hauptmann, Oakwood Mayor Lamar Scroggs and Lt. Governor Casey Cagle cut ribbon at Best Western Plus Hotel in Oakwood, Hall County’s newest hotel with 62 unique rooms, all standard with microwave, refrigerator, coffee maker and wireless internet. Guests enjoy a full hot breakfast and coffee available 24 hours daily. The property is managed by Mcglashan Hospitality of Georgia, and all associates are dedicated to guests comfort and a positive experience. 4535 Oakwood Road in Oakwood. 770-535-8080.


February 5, 2013 • Greater Hall Chamber of Commerce

E d uc at i o n & Wo r k f o r c e

Partners in Education


Zebra Technologies joined forces with Johnson High School as part of the Chamber's Partners in Education program. Zebra was directly involved with introducing Johnson’s Comco Cadet in-line flexo press graphic program with the Phoenix A four-color Comco Cadet, the latest printing tool installed at Johnson Challenge High as part of Zebra Technologies partnership with the school. Foundation (Kneeling): Students Peter Adams and Andrew Todd. (Standing, L-R): (PCF). The seven Pao Sengkhammee, Zebra Technologies; Students Bastian Crawford and Grayson Anthony; Instructor Scott Porter, Johnson High School; Dana inch, four-color Comco press was Miller, Chamber VP of Education. installed in November and is an excellent example of how graphics education can be a pivotal career path for today’s students. "Zebra Technologies is proud to partner with Johnson High School to start the first Flexographic Printing Program at the high school level in Georgia," said Pao Sengkhammee, Plant Manager. "I am pleased and excited that the Phoenix Challenge Foundation and Johnson High administration had the courage and vision to allow this program to become a reality. It is our hope and goal that this program will give students an option and opportunity to get into the Flexo printing industry, which is a $250 plus billion industry. The fundamental printing knowledge gained, coupled with the hands on training that the students will receive through this program will make them an attractive hire candidate for employers such as Zebra. Programs like this one will add to the local skilled labor workforce which is an essential precursor to attracting investments into the area from industry.” Locating to Oakwood in 2008, Zebra Technologies has 38 employees and is a global leader for innovation and reliability with an extensive portfolio of bar code, receipt, card, kiosk & RFID printers and supplies. In 2012, Zebra invested over $1.5 million in facility expansions and new equipment. Zebra was named Industry of the Year in the 0-50 employee category (see story on page 4). Johnson High boasts a high level of participation in graphic and printing skills competitions and offers a Youth Apprentice Program as well as national accreditation programs. Johnson High Graphic Students rank as one of the highest in Georgia in becoming nationally certified in graphic arts.

Biz Card Ad 2 columns 4.4167 x2"

Social Media Workshops

Over 100 Chamber members participated in the Greater Hall Chamber and Brenau University's two-part Social Media Workshop in January. The workshops were sponsored by Charter Business and Full Media and informed small business professionals on trends in social media along with selecting, integrating and optimizing social media and developing social media strategies. Don't miss the Chamber's upcoming Small Business Success Seminar on Tuesday, February 12 at 7:45 a.m. at the Chamber. "Small Business Economics in Post Election America" will be presented by Katie Simmons, Assistant Dean of the Mike Cottrell College of Business and Interim Department Head of Economics and Finance at the University of North Georgia. The seminar is free for Chamber Members. Details: Jean McCullough, 770-532-6206. Email: Make reservations for this event and others online at

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Welcome New Members

Anderson Power Service Tray Anderson 924 N Main Street Cleveland, GA 30528 (706) 348-1501 -Generator Sales & Services

Many thanks to Community Bank & Trust (CB&T) for hosting the January Business After Hours at their newly renovated branch in Gainesville. (L-R): Kit Dunlap, President & CEO, Greater Hall Chamber; Doug Patterson, City Executive CB&T; Carol Shirley, Vice President Branch Manager/Retail Market Leader CB&T; Cindy Wilson, Challenged Child & Friends; Kurt Hansen, Regional President CB&T. Don't miss the next Business After Hours on Thursday, February 21 from 5:00 7:00 p.m. at Norton Group Benefits (new location). Details: Michelle Wiley, 770532-6206. Email: Get information on this event and others online at

Clarkson Family Dentistry Dr. Michael Clarkson 1208 Sherwood Park Drive Gainesville, GA 30501 (404) 532-4419 -Medical / Dentist Craig Shoemaker 3803 Corinth Drive Gainesville, GA 30506 (336) 255-1467 -Individual Membership

Welcome New Members

Anderson Power Service Tray Anderson 924 N Main Street Cleveland, GA 30528 (706) 348-1501 -Generator Sales & Services Clarkson Family Dentistry Dr. Michael Clarkson 1208 Sherwood Park Drive Gainesville, GA 30501 (404) 532-4419 -Medical / Dentist Craig Shoemaker 3803 Corinth Drive Gainesville, GA 30506 (336) 255-1467 -Individual Membership

Me, Myself & I Home Renovations Jerry Poirier 7149 Regent Court Flowery Branch, GA 30542 (678) 380-8735 -Construction / New & Remodeling The Dawg House Karla Reid 420 Wall Street Gainesville, GA 30501 (770) 533-8900 -Restaurant & Catering

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Wilson Lewis, LLC Melissa Crisp 6650 Sugarloaf Parkway, Suite 900 Duluth, GA 30097 (770) 476-1004 -CPAs / Accountants

To learn more about the Greater Hall Chamber of Commerce, membership benefits, or how you can get involved, contact Membership Coordinator Kara Tate at 770-532-6206. Email: ktate@ Join the Greater Hall Chamber online:

The Dawg House Karla Reid 420 Wall Street Gainesville, GA 30501 (770) 533-8900 -Restaurant & Catering Wilson Lewis, LLC Melissa Crisp 6650 Sugarloaf Parkway, Suite 900 Duluth, GA 30097 (770) 476-1004 -CPAs / Accountants To learn more about the Greater Hall Chamber of Commerce, membership benefits, or how you can get involved, contact Membership Coordinator Kara Tate at 770-532-6206. Email: ktate@ Join the Greater Hall Chamber online:

February 5, 2013 • An Advertising Supplement to The Times

American TeleCenters, Inc. Rebekah Beccue 930 Interstate Ridge Road, Suite G Gainesville, GA 30501 (770) 536-0399 -Telephone Answering Service

Me, Myself & I Home Renovations Jerry Poirier 7149 Regent Court Flowery Branch, GA 30542 (678) 380-8735 -Construction / New & Remodeling

Membership Development

American TeleCenters, Inc. Rebekah Beccue 930 Interstate Ridge Road, Suite G Gainesville, GA 30501 (770) 536-0399 -Telephone Answering Service

Membership Developm

nuary (L-R): Kit Executive er CB&T; dent CB&T. om 5:00 e Wiley, 770and others

Business After Hours


Key Economic Indicators

February 5, 2013 • Greater Hall Chamber of Commerce

Hall County


Gainesville City 7.4


Cherokee 6.4 Dawson 6.8


Forsyth 6.1


Dec 2012

6.5 Previous Month

Leadership Hall's Healthcare & Community Service Program began at The Arts Council where the class heard from a variety of local non-profit executives including Gladys Wyant, The Arts Council; Jane Carpenter, Edmondson-Telford Center for Children; Steven Mickens, Boys & Girls Clubs of Hall County, and Kay Blackstock, Georgia Mountain Food Bank. The class toured Challenged Child & Friends and interacted with the children in their classrooms and on the playground. The class traveled to The Longstreet Clinic for lunch and presentations by Mimi Collins, CEO, and Loren Funk, COO. Northeast Georgia Health System's Melissa Tymchuk, Director of Marketing & Public Relations and Rhonda Thompson, Special Projects Coordinator spoke to the group, and a video presentation at Northeast Georgia Health System Walters Auditorium was given by Tracy Vardeman, Strategic Planning & Marketing. The class toured the hospital – visiting the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit, Cardiac Cath Lab and the ER. The day ended with snacks provided by Northeast Georgia Health System. Many thanks to The Longstreet Clinic for sponsoring lunch. Make a nomination for the 2013-2014 Leadership Class. Contact Dana Miller, VP Education, 770-532-6206, or download a nomination form online at

Gwinnett 7.1 Jackson 8.0 Ga Mountains 7.1 State of Georgia 8.5

12-Month High

Jan 2012


Nov 2012

Youth Leadership Hall


Greater Hall County Area Jobless Employment Rates 6.6



One Year Ago

Dec 2011









2012 Updated 12/19

Retail Sales


The Norton Agency Key Economic Indicators $ 217,178,335 2 columns 208,866,822 217,803,110 4.4167 x 10 Hall County


Latest December 2012

100’s millions of dollars

Leadership Hall recently visited Challenged Child & Friends. (L-R): Jake Moran, The Simpson Company; Jeff Butler, Morton, Vardeman & Carlson, and Dana Miller, Chamber Vice President of Education.


E d u c a t i o n / Wo r k f o r c e

Leadership Hall County

Previous Month

One Year Ago

November 2012

December 2011




Hall County retail sales figures are estimated from the 1% sales tax collected for Hall. For example, $11 million in tax revenue represents retail sales of approximately $100 million.










Updated 12/19

Housing Permits Issued - Hall County Latest

December 21 Previous Month

One Year Ago

2011 Total

Nov 2012

Dec 2011





2012 YTD

Area Permits Dec Dec Nov Total 2012 County 2012 2011 2012 2011 YTD Barrow 10 3 5 25 44 Dawson 0 2 1 34 13 Gwinnett 61 47 129 555 603 Forsyth 153 88 123 1,099 1,468 Jackson 4 1 9 22 30

Homes Sold and Closed and Average Price of Home Area

Youth Leadership Hall began with a visit to the Hall County Detention Center where Sheriff Gerald Couch addressed the group. After a tour of the jail, the class traveled to Brenau University for lunch and heard from Attorney Mark Alexander, Stewart, Melvin & Frost; Stephanie Woodard, Solicitor General; and Attorney John Breakfield, Breakfield & Associates. At the Hall County Court House, Paul House of the Gang Task Force spoke about gang issues facing our community. The group also witnessed a live trial in Judge Charlie Wynn’s courtroom, and the day ended with a mock trial led by Mark Alexander. Many thanks to Chick-fil-A Gainesville and Brenau University for sponsoring meals.

Dec 2012

Avg Dec Price 2011

Avg Nov Price 2012

Avg Total Price 2011

Avg Total Price 2012

Avg Price


10 203,098 14 125,323

14 121,779 180

132,902 137 125,172


29 194,955 34 186,070

29 168,195 384

203,902 322 151,731


24 59,425 18 51,878



16 120,638 21 124,121

14 179,240 296

131,000 198 163,552


23 175,694 44 191,473

37 159,930 558

182,192 589 174,979

46,031 238

79,629 167 64,758

Updated 1/29

Data compiled by the Norton Agency. For additional information or other data products, please call:

Tommy Howard 770-718-5204

The Norton Agency

The Power To Perform

Fieldale Farms Health Center

Chamber Healthcare Committee

Thank You Event Sponsors Brenau University • Charter Business • Chick-fil-A Gainesville Cotton Eyed Joe's • Delta Community Credit Union • Full Media Georgia Power • Hall Co. Master Gardeners • Highland Mountain Beverage • Insurance Office of America • Jacobs Media • Keep Hall Beautiful Lanier Technical College • Milton Martin Honda • Norton Benefits Group Oakwood Occasions • Red Clay Interactive • The Longstreet Clinic • The Times

1/4 Page Ad (L-R): Rachel Joiner, Hall County Mission Manager, American Cancer Society; Chamber Healthcare Committee Chairman Chad Bolton, Northeast Georgia Health System; Dr. David Westfall, District 2 Public Health Director; Mark Fine, Your Senior Insurance Solutions.

Leadership Hall Nominations Nominations now being accepted for the 2013-2014 class of Leadership Hall County. Leadership Hall participants develop knowledge of the community through a series of one-day sessions, August through April. Topics covered include quality of life, education, health and social services, city and state governments, judicial, and economic development. Individuals must be nominated for the program by March 15. Details: Dana Miller, VP of Education at the Greater Hall Chamber, 770-5326206 ext. 113. Download a nomination form online at

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February 5, 2013 • An Advertising Supplement to The Times

The American Cancer Society presented the committee with an overview of it's Cancer Prevention Study 3, a study underway to better understand the factors that cause or prevent cancer and to, ultimately, help eliminate cancer as a major health concern for future generations. Michelle Wiley, VP of Membership, volunteered to be one of the “40 Champions” to promote the Cancer Prevention Study 3. The study is a partnership with Northeast Georgia Medical Center and the American Cancer Society.

The Chamber's Beautification Committee and the Georgia Forestry Service announce winners of the 2013 Arbor Day Student Art and Essay Contest. Winners are from Enota Elementary School with over 100 entries in art with the topic “I Speak for the Trees.” 1st place in the 3rd Grade Art Contest is Prudence Matthews. Runner Ups: Tennent Slack and Mary 1st Place Art by Prudence Matthews. Griffin Romberg. 1st Place in the 5th Grade Essay Contest is Oscar Salazar. Runner ups: Bella Scarlett and Bailey Morris. The Annual Arbor Day Celebration is Friday, February 15 at 10 a.m. at the Frances Meadows Center. Open to the public, the event is sponsored by the Hall County Master Gardeners, Keep Hall Beautiful and Georgia Power. Festivities include student contest recognition and a joint city/county proclamation with Tree City USA recognition. Details: Robin Halstead, 770-532-6206.

Community Development

Fieldale Farms Corporation celebrated the opening of their second health care center for employees and their families (L-R): Daphne Reid, Mandy Kennedy, Jon Allen, Joe Hatfield, Dr. Folake Aminu, Tom Hensley, Cyndae Arrendale, Dr. James Thiel, Mrs. Carrie Hatfield, Jonathan Cueto, Gus Arrendale, John Wright, Heidi Schwab, Pam Veatch, Susie Brandon, Bridgett Orshowitz and Denise Ivester. The Fieldale health facilities allow the company to offer quality health care at equal-to or less-than community costs with less lost time work hours. The savings allows Fieldale to positively affect the company’s health care costs. Present were company owners, board members and executives, Take Care Health/Walgreens executives and many influential community leaders. Take Care Health/Walgreens is the vendor managing the health center operations for Fieldale Farms Corporation. Fieldale Farms Health Center, 584 Lanier Park Drive in Gainesville.

Arbor Day Celebration


Back Page Ad 10 x 7.5

Upcoming Chamber Chamber Events Upcoming Events Tuesday, February 12 Small Business Marketing Workshop Small Business Tuesday,Success FebruarySeminar 14 "EconomicsMarketing in Post Election Trends America" Presented by Gordon Sawyer Presented by Katie 8:00 - 10:00 a.m.Simmons, – The Oaks at University of NorthCareer Georgia Lanier Charter Academy 7:45 a.m. - 9:00 a.m. Greater Business Hall Chamber After Hours Thursday, February 16 Wednesday,5:00 February 13 - 7:00 p.m. Network Over Luna'sCoffee Restaurant 8:30 a.m. - 200 9:30Main a.m. Street OO Cafe Oakwood Occasions Hunt Tower in Downtown Gainesville at the Hall Co. Government Center

Friday, Arbor February Day15Celebration Annual Arbor Celebration Friday,Day February 17 10 a.m. - Frances Center 10:00Meadows a.m. Frances Meadows Center Wednesday, February 20 Lunch LearnRegional Assembly Safe &'nGreen 11:45 a.m.Friday, - 1:00February p.m. 24 Recess 8:00 Southern a.m. Gastro - 12:00 Pub p.m. Georgia Mountains Center Thursday, February 21 Business Hours AnnualAfter Transportation Forum Sponsored by NortonMarch Benefits Wednesday, 14Group 5:00 p.m.11:30 - 7:00 p.m. a.m. - 1:00 p.m. 434 Boulevard in Gainesville Gainesville State College


Friday, February 22Career Expo Job Fair and Buy Local Expo / Safe & Green Wednesday, March 28 9:00 a.m. - 2:00 p.m. 10:00 a.m. - 3:00 p.m. Gainesville Civic Center Center Georgia Mountains Open to the Public! $10 Admission Get Details & Register Online: Tuesday, February 26 South Hall Business Coalition "University of North Georgia Update" Presented by Dr. Bonita Jacobs 8:00-9:00 a.m. University of North Georgia Gainesville Campus Continuing Education Auditorium


This publication is printed on partially recycled paper.

Business Link February 2013  

Business Link February 2013

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