Groundbreakers 2016

Amy’s Place

When Pam Van Ahn greets you at the front door of Amy’s Place, she has a tail-wagging companion, Earl. The friendly black dachshund was previously owned by Van Ahn’s late mother, Carol, who was diagnosed with dementia and passed away in 2012. Van Ahn, a former nurse who moved to Roswell in 2011 to take care of her mother, says that her family created Amy’s Place—a unique gathering space known as a “memory care cafe” for people with dementia and their families—after learning firsthand what caregivers go through.
Groundbreakers 2016

Bluehair Technology

The nonprofit offers four- to eight-week classes on “getting started” with devices. They are all taught at places where older adults are located—senior living communities, rec centers, country clubs, and churches—throughout metro Atlanta. So far Bluehair has helped nearly 3,000 seniors learn to use smartphones, tablets, and desktops.
Clark Howard and Habitat for Humanity

Clark Howard and Atlanta Habitat for Humanity

Howard’s initial involvement in Habitat in 1996 was born out of remembrance for his father, who grew up during the Great Depression and whose parents were evicted twice. And the famous penny-pincher’s mission intersects nicely with that of the organization.
Decatur

The City of Decatur

The City of Decatur has garnered plenty of awards for its environmental work. Last year it became the first local government to reach platinum status in the Atlanta Regional Commission’s Green Communities program, a designation that recognizes an all-encompassing effort.
The Imperial Hotel

The Imperial Hotel

On a Monday in June, 25 years ago, activists broke into the vacant Imperial Hotel, made their way to the highest floor, and lowered a massive sign emblazoned with the directive: “House the Homeless Here.” Soon the encampment inside the historic hotel numbered 100 protesters.
WonderRoot

WonderRoot

In Atlanta’s civic circles, “public art” is a popular buzzword. But too often the projects are created by outsiders with little connection to the communities where the art is installed. Arts nonprofit WonderRoot has a different vision.
PATH400

PATH400

Like the Atlanta BeltLine, Buckhead’s PATH400 is converting otherwise unused stretches of land into publicly accessible greenspace—but that’s where the similarities end.
Chantelle Rytter

Chantelle Rytter

Five hundred people showed up for the first Art on the Atlanta BeltLine lantern parade in 2010. Carrying homemade lights, they tromped up the dirt path between the dumpsters and hills of kudzu that, not long ago, dotted the Eastside Trail.
Jeremy Dahl

Jeremy Dahl, AKA Machete Man

Remnants of English ivy cling to the tree trunks. Hacked off about seven feet above the ground, their leaves withered, the vines now resemble twisted ropes. They were felled by the blade of Jeremy Dahl, aka Machete Man, who is saving metro Atlanta’s forests by removing the invasive species slowly strangling them.
Paces Properties

Paces Properties

For years, Paces Properties’ most recognizable Atlanta development was Vinings Jubilee, a “lifestyle center”—or, as others may put it, an outdoor mall. That reputation changed with the 2012 announcement of Krog Street Market.

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