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 Lithonia senior to receive Martha Eaves Positive Image Award At 82 years old, Carleen Cumberbatch is a fiery voice in the community who’s been advocating for the rights of senior citizens in DeKalb C


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DeKalb NAACP hosts sheriff candidate forum

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The NAACP DeKalb County Branch will host a sheriff candidates forum on Saturday, April 19, 10 a.m. at the South DeKalb Office Park (conference room), 3015 South Rainbow Drive, Decatur.

“The NAACP non-partisan Candidate Forums are designed to empower communities by increasing awareness and participation in the full political process,” said Branch President John Evans. “We encourage the participation of everyone and seek to educate and inspire greater voter participation.”

Candidates seeking election for DeKalb County Sheriff:



Celebrating the Resurrection


“One might ask the question of this Good Friday, what is the importance of the Cross of Jesus Christ?  The Cross reminds us of the tremendous penalty for sin that Jesus bore on the “Cross” for humanity and also simultaneously reminds us of the tremendous love that He showed us by staying up on the “Cross” and not coming down.



Election officials predict light turnout for primary election


Early voting for the May 20 Primary Elections begins on Monday, April 28. Local voting officials say they don’t expect a big crowd, though, even though some of the races are crowded with candidates.


“It’s not a presidential election. People come out in droves to vote for a president. Numbers actually go up to about 80 percent,” said DeKalb County Voter Registration and Elections Director Maxine Daniels. “Historically, a primary election without a president on the ballot brings out 30 to 35 percent of voters.”

Daniels says DeKalb has about 450,000 registered voters.


Daniels is reminding voters that local elections impact the day-to-day operations, and people should not pass up their opportunity to vote.

“The local races are critical,” Daniels said. “The local offices decide on who will fix potholes, who will govern budget, who will be putting forth charges if you have to go to court. The local races are really important.”   

DeKalb’s local races include eight candidates running for sheriff, 21 contenders for six seats on the Board of Education and two candidates vying for the DeKalb Board of Commissioner, Super District 7 seat. Stan Jester is running unopposed for the District 1 Board of Education...


DeKalb Chamber’s president accepts new job in Pennsylvania



Leonardo McClarty, president/CEO of the DeKalb County Chamber of Commerce, has accepted a job as director of economic and community development in the city of York, Pennsylvania.


McClarty, who has headed the Chamber for 9 1/2 years, said his last day with the Chamber is May 23. He will start in York on June 3 at a salary of $95,500 annually. The city of York is located about 55 miles north of Baltimore and has a population of about 45,000. It is located in York County, which has a population of 450,000.


“I’m excited and at the same time, I will miss DeKalb,” said McClarty, a Georgia native who has spent 13 of his 16 professional years in DeKalb.   

McClarty was chosen from a field of more than 100 applicants. He said he will report to the mayor of York and his responsibilities will include overseeing economic development, housing, code enforcement, health inspections, planning, permitting and zoning.   

McClarty said during his tenure with the DeKalb Chamber, the organization grew to 600 members and now has an annual operating budget of $640,000.  


“When I first came to the Chamber, we had 300 members. Our numbers...


Veterans’ driver’s license/ID now available for all Georgia vets


All Georgia military veterans may request a veteran’s driver’s license or ID denoting their service under a new expanded program by the Georgia Department of Driver Services (DDS).  


In the past, any veteran who did not meet the established eligibility and/or service requirements was not able to request the license. Now, all Georgia vets, regardless of where they enlisted or the timeframe that they served, may obtain the patriotic veteran’s license at the same fee paid for the traditional Georgia license or ID card.


“Giving our veterans the recognition that they deserve is something every state should do.  I am proud that Georgia now extends this honor to everyone who served – regardless of duty,” said DDS Commissioner Rob Mikell.  “It can be difficult for military veterans to prove they served in the military.”

Georgia Department of Veterans Service Commissioner Pete Wheeler praised DDS for including all veterans.  

“We are grateful to our partners at the Department of Driver Services for championing this change,” said Wheeler.  “Now every veteran, regardless of service, will be able to proudly carry a Georgia Veteran’s Driver’s License/ID Card.”


Many businesses offer veterans a discount as a way to express...


Awesome Atlanta picks first $1,000 winner


The Awesome Foundation for the Arts and Sciences Atlanta chapter has selected the S.M.A.R.T. Moves chess program as the first recipient of its monthly $1,000 grant.  


The foundation picked S.M.A.R.T. (Science, Math, Arts, Reading and Technology) because of its efforts to mentor troubled youths.  


“Everyone had great things to say about this chess club. Mr. Mustafa Mahdi has offered chess classes and programs in several locations in the metro area and has funded them out of his own pocket,” said Dionne Mahaffey, founder of Awesome Atlanta. “He is teaching amazing life skills to these young men with the power of chess. He buys the chess pieces, boards and timers on his own.” 


Mahdi, who is employed as a juvenile court officer in Fulton County, started the chess program about two months ago. He says about 25 teens participate on a regular basis. 


“We meet every Friday at the Juvenile Court, from 5 to 8 p.m. Our slogan is teach young men to make Smart Moves in Chess and life. Our mission is to provide activities, services and mentors to prepare males for the challenges of manhood and responsible fatherhood,” said Mahdi.

Mahaffey said Awesome...


GLBC to host Youth Day at the Capitol


The Georgia Legislative Black Caucus, Inc. (GLBC) is inviting high school juniors and seniors in the metro Atlanta area to attend Youth Day at the Capitol on Friday, April 25.


Students will have the chance to meet state lawmakers and engage in interactive sessions during the program, which runs from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m.


Every year, about 200 students attend Youth Day at the Capitol.


“It’s going to be a really good program. This is a great opportunity for students to come down to the Capitol and see firsthand what takes place there,” said State Rep. Dee Dawkins-Haigler. “We’re looking forward to having students come and we’re encouraging people to spread the word for students to register.” 


The program is being hosted by GLBC along with Delta Sigma Theta Sorority Inc.– Stone Mountain Lithonia Alumnae Chapter; Hank Stewart Foundation; National County of Negro Women Rockdale/Newton Section; Enchanted Closet GIRL$ Service Learning Program; Jack and Jill of America – East Suburban Atlanta Chapter; Jewell Jackson McCabe Emerging Leaders Institute; Knorthstar Outreach; SHE IS POWERFUL INC.; and the Jewels Initiative.

For registration information on Youth Day at the Capitol, visit



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