Jannine Miller

Getting from A to B

The Georgia Department of Economic Development’s Center of Innovation for Logistics (COI) holds its 2015 Logistics Summit at the Georgia World Congress Center March 31 and April 1. Thousands are expected to attend, learn and share new logistics trends and technologies. The themes for this year are e-commerce, intermodal and perishables. I caught up with Jannine Miller, the center’s new director and a member of Georgia Trend’s 40 Under 40 Class of 2011. She’s enthusiastic about next week’s summit, and shared some of the things she’s most looking forward to. Georgia continues to see more intermodal shipping, Miller says, with

Main Street

Main Street USA

It’s hard to find anyone in the South who hasn’t watched — or at least heard of — The Andy Griffith Show. We all know that when somebody says, “That town was just like Mayberry,” they mean it was charming and filled with nice, hardworking folks and safe. While the Georgia Main Street program doesn’t aim to bring back the past, it does aim to bring more charm to our small towns, give our hardworking folks better places to work and make our downtowns safe — and fun — to visit. This year, the spotlight will be on Georgia’s Main

Georgia Museum of Art

Southern Culture

After months of hibernation it feels good to get out and partake in some local culture — whether indoors or out, art is best seen in natural light. A number of new shows happen to feature this writer’s favorite style: abstract painting. Chaos and Metamorphosis pretty much sums up this genre, so it’s fitting that it’s the title of a show of works by Italian artist Piero Lerda. Weaving weird symbols and recurring images into his colorful mixed-media collages, he strikes a tone at once funny and intriguing. His works are on view at the Georgia Museum of Art at


40 Under 40 Nominations Now Open

Each year Georgia Trend honors 40 of the state’s best and brightest under the age of 40. Whether you know someone who’s making a difference on the national stage or is a mover and shaker in his or her corner of the state, if they are under 40 years old as of Oct. 1, 2015, we want to hear about them. The ideal candidate is someone who is successful in his or her profession and is passionate about community service. There are a few cases in which a day job alone is enough of a qualification, but the state is


Capitol Events

The Garden Club of Georgia and the Georgia Water Coalition joined several other environmental groups in Atlanta on Feb. 18, for Capitol Conservation Day. Some 150 gathered at the Capitol after a breakfast briefing on environmental issues at Central Presbyterian Church, across the street from the Statehouse. The current legislative session includes a mixed bag of environmental policy in the works. Senate Bill 101 would clarify and sustain Georgia’s buffer rules for rivers and streams, but some groups are concerned the bill has too many loopholes in its current state. Clarification of Georgia’s buffer rules have been sorely needed for

Collaborative Leadership Summit on Education

Some illuminating observations on education emerged at (co)lab, a Leadership Atlanta/Metro Atlanta Chamber of Commerce/City of Atlanta/Atlanta Regional Commission “Collaborative Leadership Summit” held at Woodruff Arts Center in Atlanta Sept. 22-23, 2013.

Dr. Bud Peterson, president of Georgia Institute of Technology, said 43 percent of Tech students study abroad in 30 countries, and 426,390 students participate in open enrollment, free online courses in subjects such as robotics. “Technology is changing the way we think about education,” says Peterson. “In terms of timing, the August May year based on harvest time is no longer valid. In our online robotics courses, only 10 percent of the 40,000 who enrolled finished the course, but that’s okay. If 5,000 finish, it changes the concept of success – this is learning for learning’s sake.” Tech has no college of education but several K-12 outreach programs including Direct to Discovery, BEST Academy, Project Engage, and Pathway Mentoring.

Diana Laufenberg, teacher, Science Leadership Academy, Philadelphia: “If you teach to the test, you get the test. Teach past the test, and you get this wonderful thing, but we are settling for less, and schools are stuck in compliance and controls mode. Our Science Leadership Academy encourages collaboration not competition, emphasizing process not outcome.”

Nikhail Goyal, author, 18. “Growing up I saw parallels between the U.S. And Indian education – so many young people are left ouf ot the conversation. Does it have to be this horrible? I wrote my first book at 16 about the history of U.S. education. Before the 1850s, the U.S. was the most educated society, with a 98 percent literacy rate in Massachusetts; children were raised by households and churches, an inclusive experience. Horace Mann sought to dumb down the population as we entered the industrial revolution by creating a school system antithetical to natural learning, based on what he saw in Prussia to condition soldiers. Our system today remains largely identical to that system: age segregation, agrarian school calendar, desks in rows, designed to serve social order and diminish our learning capacities. The buildings are the same design as prisons and are often built and designed by the same companies. The similarities don’t end there: students have twice the restrictions as prisoners. Students today must “detox” and unlearn before peer pressure emerges to get them to learn and get off the couch. We see life long learning incubators emerging, but the system won’t budge without outside pressure. Our communities of isolation must also change, starting with less physical separation.”

Ken Zeff, Chief Strategy and Innovation Officer, Fulton County Schools: “We are transitioning all 100 schools to the charter model to decentralize the system so school decisions are local and better able to foster innovation. We have School Governance Councils consisting of non-voting principals and students, elected parents and teachers, and appointed employees. When engaged properly, parents do show up. We have the Fulton Leadership and Innovation Academy to train them, and $4 million set aside annually of our $7.8 million in funding, so most funding is competitive from our foundation in the form of grants for projects like Saturday School, transportation, and seed ideas. We’ve learned to sweat the small stuff, such as helping people to vote using online software to make it easier.”

Bill Strickland, CEO, Manchester Bidwell Corporation, a nonprofit training school in Pittsburgh: “An art teacher saved my life, so I want inner city kids to see art. I built my center in the toughest neighborhood in Pittsburgh, filled it with art, and nothing has ever been stolen in 26 years. No antitheft system: environment drives behavior. 90 percent of those in our culinary program go to work in 12 months. Every student has a gourmet lunch – to take the stigma out of food. Our pharmaceutical school is one of the top 17 vocational schools in the country. Our Craftsman Guild for at risk kids has a 97 percent graduation rate from high school. The kids aren’t the problem. We received half a million from eBay to replicate our model – 100 cities in the U.S., including Atlanta, and 100 globally.”

Image Credit: Ben Young