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Newsletter Archive [January 2011] [01/07/11]
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Sneak Peak at the New Website!

Will be Available February 1

We have been teasing you with the new website for a few months now.  Well, Candice and I are putting the finishing touches on it right now.  At the beginning of February, you will see some changes at!

Click here to see a screen shot of the new Member Portal Page.  (Note: this page is from another group that uses the same system.)  You'll see 6 main areas highlighted that will offer great new capabilities and benefits for our paying members, like:

  • Easy way to update your profile
  • Your current committees
  • Important News
  • List of upcoming events
  • Custom searches
  • Print your own receipts and invoices!

2011 Job Tax Credit Rankings

DCA Releases Rankings for 2011

The Department of Community Affairs has released the Job Tax Credit Ranking details for all interested.  There are several links that may be of interest to you:

For more information, please contact Brian Williamson at 404-679-1587 or Dawn Sturbaum at 404-679-1585.

Annie Hunt Burriss Wins Award

Presented at GaBio Annual Awards Dinner - January 20th

Past GEDA Chair Annie Hunt Burriss will be presented with the 2011 Georgia Bio Industry Growth Award.  The award will be presented at the Annual Awards Dinner on January 20th at the Fox Theater in Atlanta.

From Georgia Bio:

The Industry Growth Awards are the highest honors bestowed each year by Georgia Bio (GaBio.)  They recognize individuals in the public and private sectors who have made extraordinary contributions to the growth of Georgia's life sciences industry.  Dr. Burriss is the recipient from the public sector.

Congratulations to Annie Hunt Burris!



GEDA Welcomes Commissioner Chris Cummiskey

Gov.-elect Nathan Deal announced that he will present Chris Cummiskey as his choice for commissioner of the Georgia Department of Economic Development.


Governor-elect Nathan Deal has chosen Chris Cummiskey as his nominee for the post of Economic Development commissioner.  The GCEcD board unanimously approved the nominee at the meeting on December 2, 2010 in West Point.


"Chris brings both private and public sector experience to the table; he knows how the state must balance good public services - particularly education - with the need to maintain a strong business climate," Deal said. "I've said throughout Georgia that I'll serve as the state's chief salesman as governor. That's the vision and talent that Chris will bring to this position. We have an excellent product to sell; Chris is the partner I need to bring industry and jobs to our state and kickstart our economic growth - my No. 1 priority as governor of Georgia."


Cummiskey joined the University of Georgia as the Director of State Relations in 2008.  In this role he represents the university in matters with state government offices and is the primary liaison with state officials.  Chris will begin working with GDEcD on January 10, 2011.


Prior to joining the university, Cummiskey served as the chief of staff for Georgia House Speaker Glenn Richardson.  In that position, he oversaw House research and communications staff as well as all administrative staff.  Previously, he was the state director for U.S. Sen. Johnny Isakson for three years. As the state director, he worked with the Georgia General Assembly, the governor's office, local officials and Georgia businesses on matters relating to the federal government.  


After graduating from UGA, Cummiskey worked for eight years with energy companies in Georgia, California and Texas managing their energy trading desks. 


Cummiskey and his wife Rebecca live in Sandy Springs. 


SPECIAL RECEPTION!  GEDA is co-sponsoring a special welcome reception for Chris.  AND YOU ARE INVITED!  The Gwinnett Chamber of Commerce will host this reception on Tuesday, January 18 from 6-8PM at the Gwinnett Chamber.  (6500 Sugarloaf Parkway, Duluth, GA 30097.)  See the attached flyer or go to the registration page.  The best part is ... registration is FREE for GEDA members!  

GEDA Legislative Day at the Capitol

Registration is Now Available

The GEDA Legislative Day at the Capitol is just a few weeks away.  The registration form is now open and available!  Follow this link to register today.  

As a reminder, you are your guests will still register like a normal luncheon (although this is separate from the prepaid meals options.)  The price is $30 per person, however we are going to cover that fee for our legislators.  Many communities are using this opportunity to bring their local leadership team to the Capitol for a mini-Legislative Day.  This event will provide an excellent forum for you to bring your local Board members, County & City Commissioners and other leaders to Atlanta to meet with your Georgia General Assembly representatives.  

We encourage you to contact your legislators as soon as you can and personally invite them to the lunch.  Please make sure that they know that the lunch is free for them and they can come for as long or short as they'd like.  It's a drop-in style lunch from 11:30 until 1:30.  Thanks in advance for your help!

Membership Renewals

Renewal season is in full swing!  As you'll see from the fancy graphic to the left, over half of you have already renewed your membership for 2011.  For that, we say THANK YOU!  That needle is currently in the yellow.  I'd love to see us get into the green by the end of January and tipping up past 100% by the end of February.  Can we do it?? Of course we can!  

Tell all of your GEDA friends that they need to renew.  Find some colleagues that may have allowed their memberships to lapse in past years that they need to come back!  GEDA is just going to get better as we approach our 50th Annual Conference.  NOW is the time to get involved and help us be the best Association we can.!

Let's move that needle PAST the green!

2011 Events Calendar

January 18  Georgia Leadership Welcome Reception for GDEcD Commissioner Chris Cummiskey.  Register here.  (Free for GEDA members!)

January 26  Legislative Day at the Capitol

February 21  Luncheon at Georgia Tech Hotel

March 21  Luncheon at Hotel Palomar

Welcome New Members

Todd Barton, CB Richard Ellis

Vicki Coleman, Fulton County Government

Mike Donnelly, Georgia Power Company

Tommy Guthrie, Atkinson County

Winston Haynes, CB Richard Ellis

Brittany Holtzclaw, Gwinnett Chamber Economic Development

Duane Dodson Retiring

Leaving Georgia Power After 42 Years

The following is a message from Duane Dodson, who has just retired after over four decades of service to Georgia Power.  GEDA wishes Duane the best in his retirement!


To all my friends at GEDA,

Effective January 1, 2011, I will retire for Georgia Power with 42 years of service.  Over the 16+ years I have made many Community and Economic Development friends across the state -- through my association with the Georgia Economic Developers Association.  The professionalism shown and knowledge shared have been greatly appreciated, but most of all I thank you for your friendship!

My contact information as of January 1 will be:

Duane Dodson
2301 E Doublegate Drive
Albany, GA 31721


Best regards,

NEW GEDA Leadership

January 1 means that the new slate of Officers, Directors and Committee Chairs have taken office.  Take a look at the updated list online.

Also - we are updating Committee pages with the new contact information and Action Plans.  They should all be complete within the next few days, so check those out and find the perfect Committee for you to join.  It's the #1 way to get involved with GEDA!

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Atlanta, GA 30308
(404) 962-4110 or (404) 962-4109