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Ethics Commission: Edwards OK

By   /   September 8, 2011  /   Comments

Dougherty County Commission Muarlean Edwards and the Georgia Government Transparency and Campaign Finance Commission are now on the same page: Edwards no longer owes a $75 late filing fee.

The commission acknowledges that a reporting error, not a deliberate delinquency, resulted in the appearance that Edwards was delinquent in filing campaign finance disclosure forms. Thus, the $75 late fee has been dropped.

A large number of Albany-area citizens who are elected to manage high-dollar budgets, pass legislation and ensure that laws are enforced, and many others who have run for office and lost, owe the government money and run amok of state ethics rules.

Campaign finance disclosure forms are required to be submitted electronically to the commission and are published on the website www.ethics.ga.gov. Until this year, local officials and candidates submitted the forms with local election officials.

Albany a ‘Playful’ community


With only 1-in-5 children in the U.S. currently living within walking distance of a park or playground, 151 cities and towns including Albany have earned recognition from national non-profit KaBOOM! as 2011 Playful City USA communities for their efforts to increase play opportunities for children.

According to the American Academy of Pediatrics, play is important to healthy brain development and allows children to use their creativity while developing their imagination, dexterity, and physical, cognitive, and emotional strength. Today’s children spend less time playing outside than any previous generations in part because only 20-percent live within walking distance of a park or playground. This Play Deficit is having profound consequences for kids physically as well as mentally and socially because children need a place to play every day in order to be active and healthy.

Each of the 2011 Playful City USA communities demonstrated creative commitments to addressing the Play Deficit. Playful City USA celebrates and highlights these unique initiatives developed by communities across the country. A primary goal of Playful City USA is to encourage cities and towns to share creative ideas, concepts and programs in an effort to increase play opportunities for children. City initiatives include:


ASU gets endowed chair


Albany State University officials announced Tuesday the college’s first endowed chair.

The Fuller E. Callaway Endowed Chair of Nursing is funded by the Fuller E. Callaway Professorial Chairs Trust through Bank of America. The trust provides a 50 percent supplement to the Callaway Endowed Chair’s salary.

“Being selected for the establishment of the Fuller E. Callaway Endowed Chair of Nursing is a tremendous honor for Albany State University,” said ASU President Dr. Everette J. Freeman. “We are grateful to be recognized for our academic excellence and our commitment to students through the establishment of this endowed chair.”

The first Fuller E. Callaway Endowed Chair of Nursing, Dr. Cathy Williams, recently became chair of the Department of Nursing. Williams was also named ASU Teacher of the Year for 2010-11.

“We were delighted to nominate Dr. Williams for the very first endowed chair at Albany State University,” said Clifford Porter Jr., Vice President for Institutional Advancement. “While writing the proposal for the endowed chair, I was especially impressed by Dr. Williams’ philosophy on teaching and learning coupled with her outstanding career as an educator and as a practicing nurse.”

Williams began teaching at Albany State University in 2005 as an assistant professor. In 2010 she was promoted to the rank of associate professor. From 2007 to 2010, Williams served as the coordinator of the ASU undergraduate nursing program. In 2010 she became the director of the Nursing Department. Last month, Williams was named chair of the Nursing Department.


AB&T adds Revell as VP


            AB&T National Bank has added Perry Revell to its Commercial Lending Department. Perry Revell as vice president/commercial banker at its Meredyth Drive location.

An Albany native, Perry attended Deerfield-Windsor School. He later went on to the University of Georgia, where he graduated with a Bachelor of Business Administration and marketing. After returning to Albany, he has continued to be very active in this community. Perry is the 2012 United Way, Chairman Elect. He is a Past Board Member of Keep Albany-Dougherty Beautiful, Past Board Member of the Fellowship of Christian Athletes and has been recognized by the Albany Herald as one of their “40 Under 40.”

Perry began his banking career in October 2006 as a credit portfolio manager for SunTrust Bank in Albany. He was responsible for underwriting credit for Private Wealth Management in both the West Georgia and the South Georgia markets. Most recently, as Vice President and Commercial Banking Relationship Manager, his focus was on effectively managing commercial relationships in the Albany/South Georgia area.

“We are so fortunate to add such outstanding and proven talent to our banking team,” commented Luke Flatt, president and CEO. “His background and experience fit perfectly with our business strategy and our vision of becoming the gold standard of business banking in this area. This addition to our staff further confirms our commitment to becoming the Gold Standard for community banking in every aspect of our business.”

AB&T National opened its doors in 1999 as Albany Bank & Trust, focused on providing customers with local decision-making and exceptional quality service. It is a member of the FDIC and is an Equal Housing Lender. For more information, visit www.abtgold.com.

Heritage cutting ribbon in Lee


HeritageBank of the South will hold a ribbon cutting ceremony for the new 10,000-square-foot Lee County branch located at 104 Heritage Lane on Wednesday, Sept. 7 at 10 a.m. Guests will include the HBOS executive team and Leesburg and Albany city/county officials. This event is hosted by the Lee County and Albany Chamber of Commerce.

HeritageBank of the South invites the public to this event.

Founded in 1955, Heritage Financial Group is a multi-tier holding company for HeritageBank of the South headquartered in Albany, Georgia with 22 full service branches and 10 loan production offices located in Georgia and North Florida. The Bank’s common stock is traded under the symbol HBOS and is listed in the National Market System of NASDAQ


Law firms merge


Camilla attorney Patrick Millsaps is merging his law firm with Atlanta-based Hall Booth Smith & Slover, which includes Albany attorney and former state Sen. Michael Meyer Von Bremen. Millsaps, who won the largest jury verdict in south Georgia history and counsels the state’s largest ethanol plant, is now a partner in HBSS.

Millsaps has represented the Georgia Department of Community Health and the Mitchell County Board of Education. He is chairman of the Georgia Government Transparency and Campaign Finance Commission, formerly known as the State Ethics Commission.

“Patrick epitomizes the type of attorney we seek at Hall Booth,” said John Hall, the firm’s managing partner. “He is committed to excellence in his field and to serving his community and state.”

Ethanol plant reorganizing


Pelham, Ga.-based Southwest Georgia Ethanol LLC, which is $107 million in debt, has filed a restructuring plan that would turn the company over to lenders in exchange for debt.

The company says in court papers that it was forced to seek Chapter 11 bankruptcy because of rising corn prices and lower prices received for ethanol than expected.

The company listed about $162 million in assets and about $135 million in debt as of Dec. 31. It produces about 100 million gallons of ethanol per year, processing about 37 million bushels of corn.


Grandparents feted at aquarium


On Sunday, Sept. 11, grandparents and their grandchildren can celebrate Grandparents Day with a special deal at the Flint RiverQuarium. One grandparent will be admitted free with each paid child’s admission. The grandparent also will receive a coupon for a free cookie in the gift store. These prices cannot be combined with any other discounts. The Flint RiverQuarium is open from 1-5 pm on Sunday.

“The RiverQuarium is a place that my whole family enjoys every time we visit,” said Flint RiverQuarium member and grandparent Bill Swan. “I take my grandchildren there often and we always have a great time together.”

            Alien Attack: Target Everglade, is currently on exhibit in the Flint RiverQuarium Adventure Center. Alien Attack offers a top-ten countdown of the most dangerous plants and animals and their threat to the area’s fragile ecosystems. Live aliens on display include the Burmese python, Nile monitor lizard, exotic frogs, and more.

The Flint RiverQuarium is southwest Georgia’s premier aquarium, featuring more than 1,000 animals that call the Flint River watershed home. The Flint RiverQuarium is located at 101 Pine Avenue in downtown Albany, Georgia. Regular operating hours are Monday-Friday 9 a.m.-5 p.m.; Saturday 10 a.m.-6 p.m.; Sunday 1 p.m.-5 p.m.


Haiti topic of ASU program

The Albany State University Department of Natural Sciences will host guest speaker Lane Rolling, M.D. as he presents “The Global Impact of Tropical Diseases in the Modern World: The Haiti Experience” from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. Tuesday, Sept. 13, in Room 114 of the James Pendergrast Memorial Library.

Rolling comes to Albany from Inquitos, Peru, where he lives and works as Head of Clinical Education for his organization, the Tropical Pathology and Infectious Disease Association. He coordinates clinical education and medical missions for students that the association trains worldwide. He has conducted research in tropical diseases and infectious diseases while working extensively with native Peruvian Shamans to find new drugs. Rolling was appointed Professor of Clinical Medicine and Surgery at the Universidad Particular de Iquitos in 2008 and is also a member of the Curriculum Design and Review Committee for the School of Medicine at Universidad Particular de Iquitos.

Albany State University and the Department of Natural Sciences welcome the public to Rolling’s lecture.


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About the author

Owner / Editor / Writer

Tom Knighton is the publisher of The Albany Journal. In November, 2011, he became the first blogger to take over a newspaper anywhere in the world. In August of 2012, he made the difficult decision to take the Journal out of print circulation and become an online news agency, a first for the Albany area.

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