Monday, September 28, 2009

Georgia Debate Union reaches quarterfinals in season-opener

The Georgia Debate Union from the University of Georgia reached the quarterfinals of the National Season Opening Tournament held Sept. 18–21 at Georgia State University in Atlanta.

More than 170 teams from 50 colleges and universities traveled to Atlanta for the meet. The UGA team of senior Brittany Cambre and sophomore Mike Lacy won five of seven preliminary debates defeating teams from Trinity University, the University of Florida, Baylor University and Missouri State University. They defeated second seed Michigan State University in the octafinals to reach the quarterfinals.

The team of senior Karen Harrison and freshman Austin Layton also won five of seven preliminary debates and were the thirtieth seed in the tournament. They reached the elimination rounds of the tournament after defeating teams from Northwestern University, Wake Forest University, the University of Michigan and the University of Kentucky.

Also attending the tournament were Dillon Horne, Jordan Edwards, Meredith McKay, Eric Bogart, Adi Sudarshan, Weilan Zhang, Justin Drew and Blaine Drew.

This was the Georgia Debate Union’s first debate tournament using their sustainable Paperless Debate Initiative. Rather than carrying four to eight 50-pound boxes filled with evidence, each team stored evidence on laptop computers. Students built their speeches, shared evidence and took notes on their laptops.

The UGA team is supported by the Office of the Senior Vice President for Academic Affairs and Provost, the Franklin College of Arts and Sciences and the Office of the Vice President for Student Affairs.

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Saturday, September 26, 2009

Wells Real Estate Funds Named Atlanta’s “Best Place to Work”

(BUSINESS WIRE)--Wells Real Estate Funds yesterday was named Atlanta’s “Best Place to Work” among midsize companies, by the Atlanta Business Chronicle. It’s the company’s fifth appearance among the finalists in the newspaper’s prestigious annual rankings, and its third in a row.

From dozens of firms considered, Wells earned the top spot among midsize companies (those with 101 to 500 employees). Wells, a national real estate investment company based in suburban Norcross, employs some 340 people in metro Atlanta, and 370 nationwide.

“For 25 years, I’ve wanted Wells to be the kind of company where people love to work,” said Leo Wells, founder and president of Wells Real Estate Funds. “This is a tremendous honor. My desire for this company since the beginning has been expressed in our creed: To glorify God and care for people. And I think caring for people extends to the people who work here every day.”

The rankings are based on an independent third-party survey of employees, under the auspices of the Atlanta Business Chronicle. This year’s winners are “war heroes of the recession,” said Greg Harris, president of Quantum Workplace, which administers the survey. The awards were announced this morning at a sold-out event in downtown Atlanta.

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Friday, September 25, 2009

Emory Is '2009 Sustainable Development' Leader

The Urban Land Institute (ULI) Atlanta District Council has recognized Emory University for its comprehensive sustainability initiatives. The University received the institute’s annual Sustainable Development Award Sept. 24 for its projects and programs in Atlanta and for its sustainable campus development principles and practices.

“Being recognized by the Urban Land Institute for our sustainable campus development is truly an honor,” said Ciannat Howett, Emory’s director of sustainability initiatives. “Emory is committed to positively impacting the region and world and educating our students about the social and environmental implications of their daily choices. This is why we place such an emphasis on sustainable construction of our buildings, purchasing locally or sustainability-grown food, recycling and reusing resources, and educating the future leaders of tomorrow about sustainable behaviors and environmental issues.”

Emory’s dedication to sustainability can be seen by the numerous initiatives on campus, including: dedicating 54 percent of the campus as ‘green space;’ integrating sustainability into the curriculum; promoting alternative transportation; campus recycling efforts; working to create social equity; promoting local and sustainably grown food; and energy and water conservation.

Additionally, the University’s approach to sustainable development has resulted in Emory holding the distinction of having one of the largest inventories by square footage of LEED-certified building space among campuses in America.

The ULI is a non-profit organization that provides leadership in the responsible use of land and in creating and sustaining thriving communities worldwide. ULI advocates progressive development, covering topics such as sustainability, smart growth, compact development, place making and workforce housing.

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Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Atlanta Falcons Chauncey Davis Honors 2009 Community Impact Awardees

/PRNewswire/ -- Atlanta Falcons Defensive End Chauncey Davis recently honored Georgia Power Foundation's Michael Anderson, Aetna's Cynthia Follmer and Camp Kudzu- Georgia's largest camp for kids with diabetes, during the 2009 Community Impact Awards, at the Arthur Blank Family Office.

Davis was joined by a number of Falcons players including Jamaal Anderson and Jonathan Babineaux, corporate executives and community leaders during the inaugural awards reception created to honor the dedication, work and community outreach of outstanding Atlantans and organizations. Good Day Atlanta's Mark Hayes served as master of ceremonies for the evening's event.

"Our Man of the Year and Woman of The Year continue to inspire people to do great things in the community. The Chauncey Davis Foundation was truly honored to recognize not only their achievements but also their commitment to the people of Georgia," said Davis, a 5th year NFL star and Auburndale, Florida native. "Camp Kudzu remains on the frontline, working with young adults affected by diabetes. Camp Kudzu's work often goes unnoticed and unrecognized but I consider it an invaluable asset to our community."

In 2007, during Davis' second season with the Atlanta Falcons, his mother Glenda Davis, had her leg amputated due to complications associated with diabetes. This fueled Chauncey's desire to make a difference and directed his focus to participate with various health and wellness related outreach initiatives. That same year, the Atlanta Falcon's standout defensive end established The Chauncey Davis Foundation, a 501(c)3 nonprofit, with a focus on educating youth about health and wellness issues. Each year, the foundation provides a number of educational workshops, seminars and activities to promote healthy living, physical health, mental health and lifestyles with a specific concentration in diabetes awareness, detection and prevention.

Sponsors for the event included: Mercedes Benz of Buckhead, Georgia Power, DTLR, Orkin & Associates, Silverman Construction, Graham and Associates, Piedmont Heart Institute, Kellee Communications, RBC, Universal Sports Management Inc., The Shaw Group, Williams Realty, Aetna, BB&T, Nike, R.L. Brown & Associates, H.J. Russell New Urban Development, Pencilworx, Marketing Consultants of Atlanta, Profile Marketing & Public Relations, Affairs To Remember, Bezaar Events, Upscale Magazine, HealthNovation, Grey Goose and more.

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Saturday, September 12, 2009

Clayton State Names 27 Fayette County Residents to Summer 2009 Dean’s List

The following Fayette County residents were named to the summer 2009 dean’s list at Clayton State University. Students must enroll in a minimum of nine credit hours and maintain a grade point average of 3.6 or higher to be eligible for the dean’s list.

Fayetteville Wendi R Bozeman
Leslie M. Carson
Joy Marie DeLay
Amanda L. Donaldson
Courtney L. Gratzer
Maureen S. Keillor
Angela Marie Lopez
Kelli D. Massey
Mary Lehang Nguyen-Quan
Kelly Vanessa Perdomo
Bonnie Ruth Sigman
Joan Wendaur
Jonesboro Cornelia Daniella Bouyea
Rhonda Elizabeth Brenner
Peachtree City Edward Andrew Case
Elizabeth J. Desch
Zachary Thomas-Albert Dicke
Tad Oliver Ericson
David D. Farr
Tim D. Fuller
Robert Lester Graham
Stanley Hinson
Chelsea Alice Martenson
Anne Louise Staigle
Stephanie Michelle Steele
Tyrone Jaymz Ryms
Patricia Delia Williams
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Friday, September 11, 2009

Georgia Division of Aging Services Recognized for Organizational Excellence

The Georgia Department of Human Services (DHS) Division of Aging Services (DAS) is only one step away from winning Georgia’s highest award for organizational performance excellence.

DAS will receive the Georgia Oglethorpe Progress Award on October 29 during the 2009 Georgia Oglethorpe Annual Conference and Awards Banquet at the Marriott Atlanta Century Center in Atlanta.

“It is an honor to receive this award,” said DHS Commissioner B.J. Walker. “To achieve this level of recognition demonstrates Georgia’s commitment to enhance how it delivers services to older adults.”

The Progress Award is the second phase of a three-phase award process that culminates with the Georgia Oglethorpe Award. To receive Georgia’s highest organizational honor, DAS must continue to show continued performance success.

“The DAS team appreciates this award as validation that we are on the right track and recognize the value of continuing this systematic approach for managing our business and improving service to our customers,” said DAS Director Maria Greene.

Georgia Oglethorpe is a nonprofit organization affiliated with the Georgia Department of Labor. Its mission is to lead organizations to improve by providing education, assessment, feedback, and recognition based on the Georgia Oglethorpe Criteria for Performance Excellence. These criteria are based on standards used to award the Malcolm Baldridge National Quality Award, administered by the U.S. Department of Commerce.
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Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Georgia Named as Motorcycle Safety Foundation Announces 2008 Award Winners

Each year, the Motorcycle Safety Foundation acknowledges outstanding achievement and excellence in rider education and training, honoring agencies, organizations, programs, dealers, the media and individuals who enhance motorcycle safety.

“The awards are our way of providing recognition and a thank you to those dedicated, hard-working and often unsung champions of rider education and training,” said Tim Buche, MSF president. “Whether the award recognizes an individual or an organization, behind it all you’ll find people devoted to the common goal of motorcyclist safety.”

The Motorcycle Safety Foundation Awards for 2008 in Georgia are:

Outstanding RiderCoaches:
Donn A. Johnson, GA

Outstanding State Licensing Program:
Georgia Motorcycle Safety Program -
Department of Driver Services, GA

A multi-disciplinary evaluation committee composed of experienced professionals in the motorcycle safety field selected the award winners from nominations received from the training community. The committee of nine included the collective experience of four MSF staff members, three state administrators, and two RiderCoach Trainers.

“The MSF is honored to provide a forum for peer review when it comes time to acknowledge those in the training community who give of their time and energy to enhance safety for riders,” said Buche.

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Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Four UGA scientists among 18 selected as Georgia Cancer Coalition Distinguished Cancer Scholars

Four cancer researchers at the University of Georgia are among the 18 selected as Distinguished Cancer Clinicians and Scientists by the Georgia Cancer Coalition for 2009-10. UGA’s new Distinguished Cancer Scholars are:

Kevin Dobbin, Ph.D., assistant professor of biostatistics, College of Public Health;
Natarajan Kannan, Ph.D., assistant professor of biochemistry and molecular biology, Franklin College of Arts and Sciences and Institute of Bioinformatics;
Mandi Murph, Ph.D., assistant professor of pharmaceutical and biomedical sciences, College of Pharmacy; and
Jia-Sheng Wang, M.D., Ph.D., professor and department head of Environmental Health Science, College of Public Health.

The Coalition selects scientists engaged in the most promising areas of cancer research. The four new UGA scholars will receive a total of $1.5 million over the next five years. UGA now has a total of 18active Distinguished Cancer Scholars.

“The support of the Georgia Cancer Coalition has helped the UGA Cancer Center grow significantly since its founding in 2004,” said Michael Pierce, Mudter Professor of Cancer Research and director of the UGA Cancer Center. “Having four new GCC scholars named in a single year certainly reflects well on the quality of the research in which our faculty members are engaged.”

Dobbin comes to UGA from the National Cancer Institute. His research focuses on modifying traditional statistical study design and analysis methods to accelerate the rate at which laboratory findings are translated into clinical tools that can be used to improve patient outcomes.

Kannan’s research focuses on mutations that are associated with the abnormal functioning of protein kinases, a large family of proteins that switch the “on” and “off” signals required for cell growth and differentiation. These mutations are involved in several human cancers, and a better understanding of them has the potential to lead to new treatments.

Murph is working to better understand a cellular signaling pathway known as the lysophosphatidic acid pathway that is involved in the progression of specific types of cancer. Drugs are under development targeting this pathway, and her research also aims to reveal their mechanisms of action to determine potential side effects before clinical trials and to maximize the likelihood of safe development.

Dr. Wang’s research focuses on the impact of environmental toxins on the formation of liver and esophageal cancers. He’s also a world leader in exploring the role natural products and dietary supplements may play in preventing cancer in high-risk populations.

Begun in 2001, the Georgia Cancer Coalition’s Distinguished Cancer Clinicians and Scientists program is an investment in Georgia’s future as a national leader in cancer control. The Scholars’ history of grants, publications and patents as well as their potential for attracting future funding is considered. In fiscal year 2008, Georgia Cancer Coalition Distinguished Scholars were responsible for securing $47 million in privately and federally funded research grants for the state of Georgia; over the program’s 8-year history, scholars have generated more than $200 million in funding.

Scholar selection is based on how the applicant’s research relates to the goals of the Coalition, the research priorities of the National Cancer Institute and the strategic plan of the sponsoring institution. Applications are reviewed by a scientific review committee and an advisory review committee appointed by the Coalition in cooperation with Georgia’s research universities. Members rank candidates according to predetermined scientific and technical criteria.

“The National Cancer Institute has identified areas of discovery that hold promise for making significant progress against all cancers. The Distinguished Cancer Clinicians and Scientists program is the cornerstone of the Georgia Cancer Coalition’s efforts to advance scientific discovery into the prevention, treatment, causes and cures of cancer. These scientists and clinicians play an important role in positioning Georgia as a national leader in cancer research,” said Bill Todd, president and chief executive officer.

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Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Hail Mary Sports Pub Makes the Top 25

The Hail Mary Sports Pub in Grayson was recently named as one of the top 25 finalists for the Nations top new restaurant franchises. The contest, co-sponsored by The Franchise Edge and Sysco Foods is a national contest in which new independent restaurants compete to have their concept franchised for free.

The Hail Mary Sports Pub, located in downtown Grayson, entered the contest in August and was notified August 19th as being named in the top 25 out of 240 national restaurants. Upon entry, each restaurant conducted a phone interview with Franchise Edge management in order to determine the top 25 finalists. The contest winner will be announced on October 1, 2009.

Upon hearing the news, the Partners of the Hail Mary we’re overwhelmed, states Hail Mary GM, Blake Hawkins. “We entered at the encouragement of Sysco Foods Atlanta, and entered thinking that we did not stand a chance of competing nationally. The partners and I recall saying that if we made the top 25 we would consider that a great privilege and honor”. We were completely thrilled when we received the top 25 notification”, he continued.

Established in 2007, The Hail Mary Pub is a dream come true for a group of local Grayson friends & family who enjoy getting together to watch our favorite sports teams and enjoy great food and drink. By creating a special neighborhood place to call home —we are living our dream. After traveling the world over and visiting many great pubs along the way, we brought the best from these journeys to you to create The Hail Mary… Grayson’s Finest Sports Pub. Our name comes from the famous football “Hail Mary” play. Although originally coined by Notre Dame, the most famous play was the Dallas Cowboys’ Roger Staubach to Drew Pearson throw in 1975. It was a last second, long shot, against all odds play. This is our Hail Mary. We guarantee a friendly atmosphere, affordable spirits, great beer & liquor selections, tasty and unique food and great special events all while providing excellent customer service and televised sports in a friendly neighborhood environment.
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