Mayoral candidates pledge vigilance against any anti-gay legislative moves

Eight folks who want to be the next mayor of Atlanta laid out their platforms Friday at a forum held by the Atlanta Gay and Lesbian Chamber of Commerce, and what they’d do as leader of a city that’s politically quite different from the state of which it is the capital.

All said they would be quick to help stop any efforts to pass something like North Carolina’s 2016 “bathroom bill” – a requirement from a conservative state Legislature that transgender people use public restrooms that that match the gender on their birth certificates.  It came just after progressive Charlotte had passed an ordinance that let transgender people use public facilities that match their gender identity.

Mayor Kasim Reed: $1 billion mixed use development around Philips Arena planned by Richard Ressler, brother of Hawks owner Tony Ressler

The Los Angeles-based CIM Group will develop at $1 billion mixed-use project around a renovated Philips Arena, Atlanta Mayor Kasim Reed said in an exclusive interview Friday.

One of the key principals of the CIM Group is Richard Ressler, the brother of Tony Ressler, the majority owner of the Atlanta Hawks.

Reed confirmed the “transformative project” during an interview after the quarterly meeting of the Atlanta Committee for Progress, held at the Ponce City Market offices of Cox Enterprises on Friday morning. It also was Tony Ressler’s first ACP meeting.

Settlement reached to close Peachtree-Pine homeless shelter – ending more than a decade of discord

After nearly a decade of legal battles between various parties, a settlement has been reached that will lead to the closing of the Peachtree-Pine homeless shelter, according to several sources close to the transaction.

Fulton County Superior Court Judge Craig Schwall apparently signed a consent decree on Wednesday, but different parties did not want to discuss the settlement on the record until they had seen the signed agreement

MARTA aims for better transit experience through art

When Jenn Cornell cranked up her cello at the top of the Northbound train escalator at MARTA’s Five Points Station Monday afternoon, maybe a dozen or so passengers gathered round to watch or listen or take videos. Atlanta transit riders can expect more moments worth stopping for – be it music, dance, painting or other art – as the transit system kicks off a reinvigorated arts program.

United Way’s Milton Little to take a three-month sabbatical

Following the cue of several of his colleagues, Milton Little, president and CEO of the United Way of Greater Atlanta, will be taking a three-month sabbatical starting June 21.

Little said he will use the time to do some traveling, perhaps overseas; help his 18-year-old son prepare to enter his freshman year at Howard University; and spend “a lot of time reflecting and planning for the United Way of the next 10 years.”

Tom Teepen (1935 to 2017) – a man ahead of his time

Friends, colleagues and family gathered at the Mason Art Gallery Sunday afternoon to remember one of Atlanta’s unapologetic liberals – Tom Teepen.

Teepen, editorial page editor of the Dayton Daily News, became an Atlantan when he joined the Atlanta Constitution’s editorial page in 1982, soon becoming its editor. He later served as a syndicated political columnist for Cox Enterprises until he retired in 2002.

Morehouse moving forward despite loss of interim president – Bill Taggart

UPDATED.

Stunned by the sudden loss of interim President Bill Taggart, leaders of Morehouse College pledged to do everything they can to keep the institution strong.

A service for Taggart, who died suddenly on June 7 of an apparent brain aneurism, was held on Friday at the Martin Luther King Jr. Chapel on the Morehouse campus.

“Things happen for a reason,” said Willie Woods, who was elected chairman of the Morehouse Board of Trustee at the same tumultuous time Taggart was named interim president. “The sad part is that we are going to miss Bill’s leadership.”

A magnificent Magnolia replaces Piedmont Park’s beloved tree

By Maria Saporta The Piedmont Park Conservancy, through the generosity of the Vasser Woolley Foundation, has replaced the park’s popular “Climbing Magnolia” tree. The original Magnolia tree was one of most popular attractions in Piedmont Park – a perfect size with outstretched limbs that embraced children, and even adults, inviting them to climb. It also […]

GE’s Russell Stokes promoted; will stay in Atlanta

General Electric Co. has named Russell Stokes, its highest-ranking executive in Georgia, as the new CEO of GE Power, the company’s New York-based unit responsible for power generation and water technologies. But Stokes — who will lead the Metro Atlanta Chamber in 2018 — will continue to be based in Atlanta.

Stokes, currently president and CEO of GE Energy Connections, will take over GE Power on July 3.

Bill Taggart’s service to be held Friday at 11 a.m. at Morehouse’ MLK chapel

Memorial services for William “Bill” Taggart, an Atlanta business and civic leader who died suddenly on June 7, will be held on Friday, June 16 at the Martin Luther King Jr. International Chapel at Morehouse College at 830 Westview Drive S.W.

Since April, Taggart was serving as the interim president of Morehouse College. He also held several important roles in the community, such as chairman of the Atlanta Business League and on the board of the Westside Future Fund.