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Author Betsy Riley

  • Betsy Riley

    Executive Editor

    The editor of Atlanta’s former shelter magazine, Atlanta Magazine’s HOME, she specializes in lifestyle topics such as home and garden, education, healthcare, real estate, travel, and shopping. She also writes occasional narrative features. On the broadcast front, she is a regular contributor to local NPR affiliate WABE’s “Weekend Preview” segments. Before joining the editorial staff ten years ago, Riley was a freelance editor for the magazine for another ten years. During that time, she wrote many features and edited the magazine’s monthly “Atlanta Life” section. She has also written for other regional and national magazines, including O (Oprah’s magazine), Ladies Home Journal, Town & Country, Parenting, and Southern Living. With former Atlanta magazine art director Elaine Hightower, Riley is the author of the award-winning Our Family Meeting Book. She began her career as a medical journalist, eventually becoming publisher of national award-winning newsletters produced by a division of Medical Economics. A graduate of Wake Forest University, she and her husband Mark have lived in Atlanta since 1980. They have two college-age sons.

 

HOPE Scholarship: The cons

The letter arrived about three years too late. Six, really, but who’s counting? It said my younger son had been admitted to the University of Georgia. He’d put in his transfer application during a moment of uncertainty, but then decided to stay at Elon University in North Carolina. When both of my boys graduated from high school—each with HOPE-eligible GPAs—they wanted UGA or nothing. Read more

Special report: HOPE Scholarship at 20

When the first HOPE scholars were freshmen twenty years ago, Georgia’s scholarship program looked very different from today. It covered two years of tuition at any public college in Georgia for B students whose household income was $66,000 or less. Read more

HOPE Scholarship by the numbers

Top high schools: The ten public high schools with the most HOPE-eligible students and the ten with the most students eligible for the even more elite Zell Miller Scholarship (fourteen schools total because of overlap) are clustered in five metro Atlanta counties. Read more

Ladies of the Club

Marcelite Jordan Harris studies the lists of names, trying to arrange a seating chart that will please 200 guests. As the first African American woman to become a two-star general, she once managed a $260 billion budget and oversaw maintenance of every single U.S. Air Force aircraft. But configuring tables for the Chautauqua Circle’s 100th-anniversary luncheon, now that’s a logistical challenge. Read more

Paradise Regained

One sunny Sunday afternoon almost thirty years ago, Robert Sherer and two coworkers from the Lefont Theaters piled into a junker car to make the ninety-minute drive up to Pennville, a tiny Appalachian community where churches outnumber stoplights on the outskirts of Summerville. The punk rockers were on a “pilgrimage to Paradise”—the otherworldly garden created by Howard Finster, the Baptist preacher whose transformation into an artist had made him a quasi-celebrity. Read more

Dramatic Developments

From emerald green to neon yellow, from mod prints to graphic black-and-white checks, this season it’s go big or go home. So it’s fitting to showcase these styles at Atlanta’s latest bold endeavor, the $200 million renovation of Ponce City Market. Read more

One and Done

By any measure, John Smoltz’s twenty-two-year professional career was remarkable. A Cy Young winner and eight-time All-Star, Smoltz is the most recent pitcher to join the 3,000 strikeout club and the only one ever to top both 200 wins and 150 saves. Read more

Unorthodox

The embankment feels like a ninety-degree incline, but the minister strides purposefully up it as if hiking a switchback trail—"the trick is to take it sideways," he says—toward the abutment of the I-75 overpass. Read more

Dolores French

In 1988, French penned a titillating tell-all, Working: My Life as a Prostitute. In it she revealed that Atlanta is a choice location for prostitutes because of the airport. Read more

Ryan Gainey

Ryan Gainey did for gardening what Martha Stewart did for housekeeping. Read more