Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Boys & Girls Clubs of America and Microsoft Honor National Club Tech Digital Arts Festivals Winners

/PRNewswire/ -- While there is no question that today's generation is incredibly savvy when it comes to technology, many question how well-prepared they are for the 21st century workplace. Yet today, Boys & Girls Clubs of America's National Club Tech Digital Arts Festivals, featuring some of the youngest and brightest tech talents, delivered a resounding, positive answer.

Boys & Girls Clubs members from across the world journeyed to Atlanta as reward for being named national winners of the annual contest. The trip was filled with hands-on experiences in the art and technology worlds. The 25 youth members took part in interactive workshops at the Art Institute of Atlanta and the global public relations firm, Manning Selvage & Lee. Participants also visited CNN, World of Coke and the Georgia Aquarium for behind-the-scenes view of what it takes to keep the tourist destinations going.

"While many of today's youth utilize technology, we have the opportunity to give our members access to training in a unique way that builds not only their skills but their confidence," said Roxanne Spillett, president and CEO, Boys & Girls Clubs of America (BGCA). "Through the Club Tech Digital Arts Festivals we're not only giving them the technology tools they need, but we're also showing them first-hand how they can leverage the skills they've gained to be great at whatever they choose to pursue."

Throughout the year, Boys & Girls Clubs members competed locally with hopes of progressing to the regional competition and finally the national level. Participants were encouraged to combine creativity with technology know-how to create a digital masterpiece in one of five categories - photo illustration, music production, filmmaking, graphic design and website development. Youth, ranging in age 10 to 18, submitted nearly 1,300 pieces of original digital artwork, incorporating the theme "Nature of Design."

The digital arts competition is only one component of Club Tech, a partnership between Microsoft and BGCA that aims to equip America's youth with the skills needed to succeed in school and the workplace. The initiative successfully integrates software training, digital curriculum and hands-on experiences to level the "virtual playing field" for all youth.

"Our young people are central to our future economic success," commented Pamela Passman, corporate vice president of Microsoft Global Corporate Affairs. "It is one of the reasons we are incredibly proud of our ten plus year partnership with the Boys & Girls Clubs of America. The Clubs provide young people with a supportive environment that fosters learning and growth, and readies them for the jobs of tomorrow. Initiatives like Club Tech and the Digital Arts Festivals offer a fantastic opportunity to showcase creativity using technology, promote digital literacy and expand skills that will not only benefit the participants but our entire society. I want to personally congratulate all of the winners. The quality and ingenuity of the winning projects is incredible."

According to a recent study by the University of Washington's Center for Information & Society, the technology access kids get outside of school is an important complement to the learning that happens in the classrooms. Researchers found that through Club Tech, Boys & Girls Club members not only learned the fundamentals of computers, but they also learned how to harness technology in a way that made them more literate in current affairs and other topics that spill over from school and from home.

"The Club Tech Digital Arts Festival goes beyond just providing access to computers. This experience affords all youth the opportunity to become productive citizens in a global economy that's driven by technology," added Spillett. "We are extremely proud of our winners as they are living proof that we're having a positive impact on the lives of our children."

The following Boys & Girls Club members were recognized as national winners:

-- Boys & Girls Club of Albany, OR - by Rylan H., Web Design
-- Boys & Girls Club of Huntington Valley, CA - A Better Place by Annie
A., Screenplay Writing
-- Boys & Girls Club of Pleasants County, WV - Pieces of Nature by Javier
Z., Photo Illustration
-- Boys & Girls Club of Rockford, IL, -Nature's Fantasy by Caitlyn C.,
Photo Illustration; People V.S. The Earth by Breanna W., Brendan E.,
Kailie W., Marlin D. and Michael L., Movie Making
-- Boys & Girls Club of the Smoky Mountains, Seymour, TN - Bird Song by
Alexis T., Music Making
-- Boys & Girls Clubs of Bellevue, WA - Scenery, Ivaylo D., Graphic
-- Boys & Girls Clubs of Broward County, Ft. Lauderdale, FL -
Construction by Desi M. Screenplay Writing
-- Boys & Girls Clubs of King County, Seattle, WA - J's Grand Canyon by
Jess J., Web Design; Tree in the Meadow by Naima Y., Graphic Design
-- Boys & Girls Clubs of Metro Atlanta, GA - Outside by Stephen H., Music
-- Boys & Girls Clubs of Metro Denver, CO - Northern Lights by Raymond
P., Web Design; Sunny Day by Isaiah G., Graphic Design
-- Camp Zama Youth Center, Japan - Dancing Dandelions by Benjamin S.,
Photo Illustration; The Beauty of Nature by Amanda C., Ariel H.,
Christian C., Jennie R., and Maia W., Movie Making
-- Fort Bliss Youthplex, TX - Whale Song by Jared G., Music Making

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Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Clayton State MBA Program Recognized by Atlanta Business Chronicle, Atlanta Business Journal

One of the signs of an academic program coming of age is public recognition.

Clayton State University’s AACSB-accredited School of Business if justifiably proud of its MBA program, which graduated its first cohort of more than 30 students this past May, and which continues to grow, both in numbers and locations.

And, it turns out that public recognition for the MBA program is growing at well. The current issues of both the Atlanta Business Chronicle and the Atlanta Business Journal both rank the Clayton State MBA program among the best in metro Atlanta.

“We are elated that the ABC and Atlanta Business Journal have ranked us among the best MBA programs in Atlanta,” says School of Business Assistant Dean – External Relations Dr. Michael Tidwell. “These rankings suggest that the business community is starting to recognize the value of the Clayton State University MBA.
In a short period of time we’ve been able to build a program of excellence that educates Atlanta’s current and future business leaders.”

It is indeed a short period. The Clayton State MBA program started in the fall of 2007. By the time the fall 2009 semester starts, the program will have more than 100 students (who are still being admitted for fall 2009) in cohorts based on the main campus in Morrow and at the Clayton State – Fayette instructional site in Peachtree City. In addition, the Board of Regents of the University System of Georgia recently gave its approval to Clayton State’s proposal to establish a cohort of the MBA program at the Rockdale Career Academy, 1064 Culpepper Dr., Conyers, Ga., starting in January 2010.

The Atlanta Business Chronicle ranked the Clayton State MBA 10th in metro Atlanta among AACSB-accredited programs, while the Atlanta Business Journal ranked the Clayton State MBA fifth in Atlanta.

For more information on the Clayton State MBA, contract program director Dr. Michael Deis at or by calling Andrea Johnson at (678) 466-4500.

A unit of the University System of Georgia, Clayton State University is an outstanding comprehensive metropolitan university located 15 miles southeast of downtown Atlanta.
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Friday, July 17, 2009

Emory Doctors Recognized in Atlanta Magazine’s “Top Doctors”

According to a survey of Atlanta doctors published by Atlanta magazine in its July 2009 “Top Doctors” issue, almost half (72) of all 165 doctors selected for recognition are Emory Healthcare doctors and Emory School of Medicine faculty.

The list is prepared by a national firm that surveys doctors to identify leading doctors in key areas of the country. To learn about Emory Healthcare doctors named visit

“We are pleased to learn of the recognition of Emory doctors recently highlighted in the Atlanta magazine top doctors issue,” says Fred Sanfilippo, MD, PhD, Emory University executive vice president for health affairs, CEO of Emory's Woodruff Health Sciences Center and chairman of Emory Healthcare. “This recognition helps underscore the type of accolade Emory faculty physicians receive every day, including awards from professional medical groups and important grants from the National Institutes of Health and other sources. Doctors practicing at Emory not only provide excellent patient care but they also are the source of pioneering discoveries that advance our understanding of disease prevention and treatment.”

New York-based health care research firm Castle Connolly Medical Ltd. survey and research process involves tens of thousands of top doctors across America and the medical leadership of leading hospitals. Atlanta’s top doctors are selected after peer nomination, extensive research and careful review and screening by Castle Connolly’s doctor-directed research team. Atlanta magazine uses the research by Castle Connolly to provide detailed information about education, training and special expertise of Atlanta doctors. It is important to note that doctors do not and cannot pay to be selected and profiled as Castle Connolly Top Doctors.

“The Atlanta magazine listing provides yet another opportunity for the public to learn of the outstanding doctors that practice at Emory Healthcare,” says John T. Fox, president and CEO of Emory Healthcare. “The fact that these doctors were selected by their peers in Atlanta to receive this recognition says a lot about the level of expertise in our health system. There is no doubt that these doctors and others at Emory excel at providing the highest level of health care to our patients every day.”

In addition to Atlanta magazine’s listing showing that Emory doctors were 44 percent of the top Atlanta doctors, Castle Connolly will issue “America's Top Doctors,” a national guide that profiles more than 5,000 top specialists throughout the United States, including these Emory’s doctors. The doctors in this guide represent the top 1 percent in the nation, according to Castle Connolly.
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Thursday, July 16, 2009

AVP Grad Receives 2 National and 1 State Scholarship

Ogechi Oparah, a seven year participant in the Association of Village PRIDE's Youth Leader program has been awarded two national scholarships.

The 2009 FCHS graduate is a 2009 Coca-Cola Scholar. She is one of 250 national scholars from an application pool of 75,000.The application pool was narrowed to 2,100 semi-finalist. Students at this stage had to submit an extensive application that narrowed it to the 250 finalist. Oparah spent four days in Atlanta with the other 250 finalist who came from all 50 states and all US territories. She was one of 26-scholars selected in Georgia and the only one from Fayette County. As a 2009 Coca-Cola Scholar Ogechi will receive $2,500 every year for four years from the Coca-Cola Foundation.

Oparah was also selected as a 2009 National Achievement Scholar by the National Merit Program. She will receive a $2,500 scholarship award. National Achievement Awards are given to minorities across the nation who achieved certain scores on the PSAT and the SAT exams. Ogechi was selected from an original pool of 1600 students who were semi-finalist. 1300 students became finalist and 700 students became award-winning National Achievement Scholars.

Oparah was one of 45 students in the state of Georgia to be selected through audition to All-State Chorus six years in a row, starting in 7th grade. Each year the Georgia Music Educator’s Association awards one male and one female scholarship as a six year All-State Student. Oparah was the female recipient of this year’s scholarship. She will receive a $500 award.

Other notable recognitions and honors for Oparah include being named the Margaret Anlicker Award winner for Fayette County High School for being selected as the best all around choral student of the year. She received the AP English student of the year award and the All-Round Social Studies student of the Year Award. Oparah graduated #3 in her graduating class of 323 students with a 4.0 average. Ogechi completed nine Advanced Placement courses at FCHS She received a College Prep with Distinction and Fine Arts Seal on her diploma. She was selected by her fellow seniors as the girl most likely to succeed. She was selected by the faculty as one of the top 20 students in the senior class based on character.

Oparah was the president of the National Honor Society, Vice President of the Beta Club and Dance Captain for the Select Chorus Variety Show. She was a member of Association of Village Pride, Inc. a youth service and leadership organization for seven years where she held several leadership positions. She also served as president for the NAACP Youth Council.

Oparah was accepted to nine universities which include, Dartmouth, Cornell, North Eastern, Howard, Princeton, Emory, Spelman, Oglethorpe, and Florida A & M. She received full or partial scholarships at all of the universities. She will attend Princeton in the fall, where she is interested in law and international studies and relations.
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Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Georgia State University's Robinson College of Business Announces 2009 Bergeron Scholarship Recipients

/PRNewswirel/ -- Georgia State University's J. Mack Robinson College of Business today announced the recipients of the 2009 Bergeron Women in Technology Leadership Scholarship:

-- Catherine Mickle--a rising junior from Decatur, Georgia as well as a
2008 Bergeron Scholarship recipient.
-- Breonna DeLoach--a rising sophomore, from Jonesboro, Georgia
-- Roxxana Manzanarez--a rising sophomore from Atlanta, Georgia
-- Monica Bull--a rising sophomore from Columbia, South Carolina
-- Shilpa Chakravarathy--a rising junior, from Atlanta, Georgia

"Financial assistance and mentorship helps these young women achieve their potential, advance into leadership positions in technology and enhance diversity within our industry," said Sandra Bergeron, a graduate of Georgia State University and chair of the mentorship committee. By way of example, Sandra Bergeron cites the success of Kia Rainey, a 2007 Bergeron Scholar who now is with HP. "We congratulate this year's recipients on their academic performance and wish them well in their continuing studies."

The Bergeron Women in Technology Leadership Fund is awarded annually to five female undergraduate or graduate students who have expressed or demonstrated high potential for leadership careers in technology. It was funded with a $1 million endowment from Sandra and Douglas Bergeron.

"The Bergeron Scholarship recognizes significant academic achievement and creates a unique opportunity for the winners. This is the largest dollar award available to students in the Robinson College of Business. The mentoring aspect of this scholarship is also very beneficial to the recipients," said Robinson College Dean H. Fenwick Huss. "We are grateful to Sandra and Doug for establishing the fund that makes the award possible."

Laurie Johnson, vice president and CIO of UPS Supply Chain Solutions, is one of several technology industry mentors involved in the program. She said, "The young woman I am mentoring has leveraged my experience and connections to expand her horizons in the business and technology worlds. The Bergeron Women in Technology Leadership Scholarship is a wonderful opportunity and it is a pleasure to participate in the career development of aspiring students."

U.S. News & World Report ranks Robinson's undergraduate and graduate computer information systems programs in the top ten in the nation. The winner of the 2009 Microsoft Imagine Cup U.S. championship for software design was led by a Robinson CIS graduate student.

Sandra Bergeron is one of the most highly regarded female technology leaders in Silicon Valley. She is chairman of the board of TraceSecurity Inc. and serves on the boards of ArcSight Inc. (NASDAQ:ARST) , Qualys Inc. and TriCipher Inc. She also is a venture advisor to Trident Capital.

Douglas Bergeron is CEO and largest individual shareholder of VeriFone Holdings Inc. (NYSE:PAY) . He also is a member of the Listed Company Advisory Committee of NYSE Euronext. VeriFone, based in San Jose, California, is the world's largest provider of electronic payments systems and employs more than 300 high-technology professionals in Georgia.

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Monday, July 13, 2009

Atlanta: Commissioner Dianne Harnell Cohen Named One of Business to Business Magazine 2009 Women of Excellence

Business to Business (B2B) magazine announced City of Atlanta Department of Parks, Recreation and Cultural Affairs Commissioner Dianne Harnell Cohen as one its 2009 Women of Excellence honorees.

“Business to Business is privileged to honor this high-caliber group of women who continue to raise the bar on excellence,” says Publisher Stephen Reynolds in the B2B announcement.

Joining the Commissioner Harnell Cohen, the honorees include Joanne Bauer (Kimberly Clark Healthcare), Susan Booth (Alliance Theatre), Ann-Marie Campbell (The Home Depot), Helene Gayle (Care International), Carol Hunstein (Georgia Supreme Court), Elizabeth Kiss (Agnes Scott College), Cynthia McCague (The Coca-Cola Company), Michele Molden (Piedmont Heart Institute), Melanie Platt (AGL Resources), Leslie Sibert (Georgia Power), and Loretta Walker (Turner Broadcasting System).

The 2009 Women of Excellence will be featured online and in print and will be honored during the awards luncheon celebration on July 23, 2009 at the Atlanta History Center. “The event will be a unique opportunity to
celebrate the success of the outstanding individuals, to honor their influential leadership and to appreciate their positive community impact,’ says Reynolds.

Commissioner Harnell Cohen is credited for providing funding for public arts programs, better management and successfully pushing for $105 million in bonds to buy land for new parks and to upgrade others. She is a devoted advocate of public service with a passion for green space and the Beltline, the environment, economic development, the arts and tourism. In March 2009, her department received accreditation without any stipulations from the National Recreation and Parks Association, setting a national precedence for large agencies.

“This is a well deserved recognition for Dianne for her first-rate management through the economic downturn and the challenging times for the Department of Parks, Recreation and Cultural Affairs,” says Mayor Shirley Franklin.

Towers Perrin, Baker Donelson, Turner Broadcasting System, Inc., Aaron’s, and UPS have teamed with Business to Business to honor this year’s award winners.
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Friday, July 3, 2009

Stephens County Resident Ties State Record Striped Bass

Angler Terry McConnell of Toccoa, Georgia had more than just a great day of fishing on Lake Richard B. Russell on April 3, 2009 – he managed to catch a fish that tied a Georgia state record! McConnell reeled in a 63 lbs., 49 ½ -inch striped bass using a blueback herring on a baitcast rod, according to the Georgia Department of Natural Resources, Wildlife Resources Division. This catch ties the current striped bass state record, which was caught from the Oconee River in 1967.

“It is always exciting for anyone to reel in a state record as it reminds us that Georgia is such a fantastic place for anglers because there are so many fishing opportunities and resources available,” says WRD Fisheries Management Chief John Biagi. “We hope that the recognition of this new state record will inspire experienced and novice anglers to get out and fish at any one of Georgia’s numerous lakes and rivers. You might not catch a new state record, but odds are you will still have a great day of fishing.”

Striped bass (Morone saxatilis) belong to the temperate bass family. They have seven or eight heavy and distinct black stripes that run the length of their body. They can reach weights of up to 80 pounds (current all tackle world record is 67 lbs. 8 oz., according to the International Game Fish Association) but most are between 5 and 25 pounds. Division Fisheries Management personnel stocked 1 ½ million striped bass in Georgia rivers and reservoirs for angler enjoyment during the past year.

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Thursday, July 2, 2009

Hispanic Chamber Names UPS Corporation of the Year

(BUSINESS WIRE)--The Georgia Hispanic Chamber of Commerce (GHCC) has named UPS (NYSE: UPS) its 2009 Corporation of the Year for its leadership in Hispanic business development and continued commitment to supplier diversity.

“UPS is a vital part of Georgia’s economy and has demonstrated its dedication to the betterment of our Hispanic business community,” said Tisha R. Tallman, president and CEO of the GHCC.

Since 1992, UPS’s supplier diversity program has focused on providing opportunities to small, minority- and women-owned businesses. In recent years, UPS has been recognized by Hispanic Business Magazine as a Top 10 Supplier Diversity company and named Corporation of the Year by both the National Minority Supplier Development Council and the Georgia Minority Supplier Development Council.

“UPS’s supplier diversity program is a direct reflection of the company’s values,” said James E. Mallard, vice president of procurement. “The supplier diversity program supports UPS’s business and empowers and strengthens our suppliers to help drive economic development in the communities we serve.”

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