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A day-to-day glance at the area's business community -- what's new, what's happening and what's being heard on the streets. Got info? E-mail

East Cobber creates


John Cristadoro, an East Cobb resident, has launched the next big thing in the Rental Property industry.  Your Rental is a web-based rental home listing service. After only a year John and his team have grown Your Rental Resource to rival the largest rental home websites.  John, along with his wife,  Gosia,  and their two children live in East Cobb.

Your Rental comes to Georgia with the intention of revolutionizing how tenants and landlords connect.  The web-based listing company provides an absolutely FREE service to landlords while offering those serious tenants a place to search through thousands of up to date, accurate listings.  In addition, YRR has partnered with numerous brands including Gas South, Aarons Rents and UPS My Choice in an effort to offer discounts on products and services related to their move.

Your Rental Resource is the most effective tool for those too busy to search hundreds of websites which may or may not offer a multitude of living options.  It’s a simple as deciding where you want to live, how much money you want to spend and what exactly you are looking for, then speak to the landlord directly to start your application process.

Searching for that perfect Townhouse with hardwood floors in Marietta?  Maybe a cute four bedroom home in the Walton School district?  Your Rental Resource provides every type of option on the market and it’s absolutely free to list a vacancy.

Many sites that offer listings to review either focus on one type of property like apartments or are a nationally based site.  Your Rental Resource is a locally focused company with Georgia Renters in mind. Don’t you hate when you think you’ve found the perfect rental property only to be disappointed when you speak to the landlord and find out it’s been rented for weeks already?   Your Rental Resource strives to provide the most up to date information for its tenant members. Check out their website at:

(Source: Your Rental 

Plan for your future with Don Johnson Insurance



East Cobb’s Don Johnson handles auto, life, health, home and business insurance. 1230 Canton Road. Call him at 770-973-8545. Voted Cobb Chamber Small Business of the Year.

Thank you for advertising with EAST COBBER.


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Got a plan for social security? Ben Clark can help.


When is the best time to start drawing Social Security? 62? 66? 70? Have you considered what strategy you will use? Sometimes the  answer is simple. Sometimes not. We can discuss your options with you. Call for a no-cost, no-obligation consultation. Got a plan?
Cornerstone Wealth Management
3115 Roswell Road, Suite 102, Marietta

Thanks for advertising with EAST COBBER!


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19th Annual EAST COBBER Parade & Festival Scheduled for September 13

2014 EAST COBBER Parade & Festival Logo


This fall, East Cobb will once again welcome the hometown tradition of a community parade and festival when the 19th Annual EAST COBBER Parade & Festival takes place on September 13, 2014. The EAST COBBER Parade features floats and high school marching bands as well as a cornucopia of East Cobb groups and will be followed by the EAST COBBER Festival featuring local entertainment, carnival games and plenty of good food.


EAST COBBER extends its mission of building a sense of community by establishing a hometown tradition of a community parade and festival. As the producers of the first parade and festival in East Cobb County, the EAST COBBER aims to establish a strong network between schools, businesses, government and clubs to create a showcase event and annual tradition for East Cobb County. The EAST COBBER Parade has become the largest parade in all of Cobb County and is the only community-wide event for East Cobb.

The EAST COBBER Parade and Festival aims to builds a sense of community and reinforce East Cobb’s status as one of the best places to live in the Atlanta area by giving thanks and special tribute to those who contribute to the quality of life in East Cobb: such as, principals, schools, clubs, elected officials, and civic leaders. Overall, the objectives of this special event are as follows:

- Spotlight the people who contribute to the quality of life in East Cobb County.

- Provide opportunities for various groups of the community to interact.

- Boost the image of East Cobb to external audiences as well as to help East Cobb residents feel good about living in East Cobb.

- Celebrate the arts by providing a showcase for local fine arts performers and groups at the Festival.

- Promote economic development by providing local businesses with an event that demonstrates their community support and allows company personnel to interact with prospects and customers.

Because the EAST COBBER Parade & Festival is privately funded, contributions from local businesses are vital to keeping this tradition alive in East Cobb County. For sponsorship information or to request a festival booth application, contact 770-640-7070.

EAST COBBER Parade 2014 Details:

Date: Saturday, September 13, 2014
Official Parade Start: 10am start

Staging Area: Mt. Bethel Elementary School, 1210 Johnson Ferry Road, Marietta, GA 30068

Parade Route: Parade travels one mile south from Princeton Lakes Drive to Fountains of Olde Towne Shopping Center, 736 Johnson Ferry Road.

Road Closure: *Johnson Ferry Road from Lower Roswell Road to Roswell Road will shut down at approximately 9:45am

To register for the 2014 EAST COBBER Parade, contact our office at 770-640-7070!



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Social Security Planning

Deciding when to start drawing Social Security is a question that is much more complicated than most people realize.  And it is an extremely important consideration for most of us.  Some of the rules seem easy but the impact on retirement enjoyment requires a good understanding of the effect a start date has.

This decision is even more impactful today than it was in the past.  According to the Social Security Administration, approximately a third of 65 years old will live to age 90!  As an example, consider someone who has a Full Retirement Age of 66 and a full benefit of $2000 per month. If they start drawing at 62 they will only receive $1500 each month but if they can wait until age 70, their benefits increase to $2,644.  $1500 vs $2,644 is a wide range. So, when should you start?

Once again, it’s complicated.  Considerations include spousal benefits, life expectancy, other financial resources, taxation of benefits and more.  Life Expectancy is the big unknown.  If someone passes away at 100 they should have waited until age 70 to start.  While no one knows their own date of death, we can look at our health, our family history and come to a reasonable projection.  If married, the joint life needs to be considered.

It is complicated enough to decide when to start for a single person but it is even more complicated for a married couple.  What is their difference in ages?  What are the relative benefits which each has earned?  Will spousal benefits come into play while both are living?  What will the survivor benefit be?

One resource is and you can read all about it.  Of course, being a government agency, their employees are forbidden to give advice.

Another resource is to sit down with a CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNING™ professional and explore the various alternatives and see the impact on you and on your family each choice has.  This decision has important implications on your finances.  It may influence your standard of living for the rest of your life.  It may determine whether or not you outlive your money.

So, when should you start?  The best answer is: “It depends”.  Each situation is unique and you need a customized, confidential review.  Social Security Planning is important for you and for your family.  Very important.

Clark_BenWritten by Ben L. Clark, CFP®. Clark is a Private Wealth Manager in East Cobb and he can be reached at 678-401-5023. Securities offered through LPL Financial, member FINRA/SIPC.

Vonage Business Solutions Relocating to Cobb County



Vonage Business Solutions, a leading communications provider, has announced that it will be moving to the Towers at Wildwood Plaza on Windy Hill Road in Cobb County. The New Jersey-based company will be inhabiting nearly 80,000 square feet, giving the company ample room to grow from their current location in Midtown, Atlanta. The relocation is expected to bring 800 new jobs to Cobb.

“Our move to Cobb County and the Wildwood Towers was driven by our desire to offer our employees a great facility and expanded amenities,” Wain Kellum, president of Vonage Business Solutions, told the Atlanta Business Chronicle on Wednesday. “We believe this move will help us retain and attract employees from the Atlanta area, which has a highly talented labor pool, particularly in the area of technology.”

When Vonage announced their plan to expand earlier this year, Cobb’s economic development team rallied to meet the prospect’s needs. “I have always made it very clear that this community is all about economic development and job growth,” said Cobb Commission Chairman Tim Lee. “Our team is about results and as you can see, Vonage is yet another example of a community working hard to gain those results. I am thrilled to have a recognized brand such as Vonage Business Solutions in Cobb County and look forward to a strong partnership with them for many years.”

Brooks Mathis, senior vice president of Economic Development at the Cobb Chamber and executive director of Cobb’s Competitive EDGE, added, “Creating jobs has been a focus of our EDGE program since the very beginning. Having a single point of contact for economic development projects has helped us rally our team to make projects like Vonage land in our community. It is imperative that when a company calls on us, we be responsive and work hard to meet their needs. Without the team-focused Cobb way, this project would not have been a success. The Chamber and Cobb County’s leadership in Chairman Tim Lee, Rob Hosack and Fire Marshal Jay Westbrook made our prospect’s needs a top priority. That attention translates into job creation.”

Vonage continues to develop innovations that enhance the customer experience with VoIP communications. Vonage’s technology serves approximately 2.4 million subscribers. The Vonage World plan offers unlimited calling to more than 60 countries with popular features, like call waiting, call forwarding and visual voicemail.

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Flip Through JuneJuly2014

EAST COBBER is accepting articles and advertising for our August issue, but TUESDAY is the deadline for entries. Share your good news with your neighbors and potential customers! August features include the Dining Guide and our Back to School section!

The deadline is Tuesday, July 15! 

Our magazine has an estimated readership of 40,000 in the zip codes of 30062, 30066, 30067 , 30068 and a portion of 30075.  In addition we publish the entire edition on, extending your visibility to our exclusive audience. Our adrates are available at

Click HERE for advertising information and rates. 

Advertising in the EAST COBBER magazine  is the most cost effective way for your business to reach your target market and let your customers know you are very much a part of this community.

East Cobb Authors Write Career Book

Al Smith, left, and Jeff Sheehan, life coaches, authors and speakers, recently authored a book titled ‘HIRED! Paths to Employment in the Social Media Era.’ The book teaches people how to use all angles to get employment in the social media era. Staff/Jeff Stanton


Want the tools you need to get a job? Career coaches Jeff Sheehan and Al Smith can help. Their book “HIRED! Paths to Employment in the Social Media Era” offers a succinct, step-by-step combination of every method for gaining employment.

For more than four years, east Cobb residents Sheehan and Smith have spoken, volunteered and coached thousands of people about employment. They have addressed people nationally and internationally on numerous topics for the job search.

Their book takes a multi-dimensional approach to the job search. They explore interpersonal skills as an integral part of one’s overall marketing campaign in the job search. The authors help job candidates maximize their exposure to posted jobs as well as the enormous number of jobs hidden in the market.

“We’ve compiled every method of finding a job, even methods that we’re not real hepped on. We want people to know everything because what’s right for you may not be right others,” said Smith, who founded Transition Sherpa, a job search program with Sheehan. He and his wife, Terry, have one grown daughter.

“This is a compilation of the knowledge Al and I have accumulated over the last 4.5 years in working with people, speaking to numerous groups around Atlanta, on the ways you can find jobs,” said Sheehan, a social media expert. He and his wife, Liz, have two grown children,

Sheehan ranks in the top 1 percent of people on LinkedIn, and has more than 265,000 Twitter followers, ranking him Twitter’s No. 1 Marketer In The World To Follow, No. 2 in Social Media, and No. 1 in Sales. He is 6,481 out of 554,000,000 users and is ranked No. 23 in Atlanta, right after The Weather Channel and ahead of Diet Coke. His 74 Klout score makes him one of the world’s leading authorities in marketing and social media, and he is a well-known speaker on the use of LinkedIn, personal branding, social media and marketing.

“We’ve expanded the horizon. It’s what’s really necessary to find a job and other opportunities in this social media era. We feel you have to take a strategic, portfolio approach to the job search,” Sheehan said.

Sheehan and Smith, who met at St. Anne’s Catholic Church, speak from firsthand experience. Employed at high-level executive jobs, both found themselves in job transition when their companies downsized.

“This is really personal to us. We’ve lived it, and we don’t want people to experience what we have. We don’t want people to experience what we see on a weekly basis,” said Smith, who worked as an executive for seven different companies in five different industries. He has more than 35 years of management, sales, marketing, plus training and coaching experience. He has won numerous awards for sales, management, and training and has an innate ability to transfer skills in the marketplace.

“The book is more conversational than it is theoretical. It doesn’t read like a non-fiction manual per se. It’s very creative. It’s easy to read. People really can’t put it down. It clearly articulates what someone needs to do to find work,” Sheehan said.

To order your copy and to learn more, visit

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What are your best “get hired” tips? Click “Chime In” to comment on our Facebook page, We’d love to hear from you!

Kay Hall discusses “Here Comes Dot Com” with Marietta Business Women

East Cobb author Kay Hall recently spoke at the June meeting of the Marietta Chapter of National Executive Business Women. She discussed her book “Here Comes Dot Com” and the chapter presented a scholarship in her name to a worthy young college woman. In the picture below, Author Kay Hall is shown with the president and president-elect of the Marietta Chapter of the National Executive Business Women.


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Local realtor® achieves national recognition


Thomas Andre

Thomas Andre with Wilcher Properties Group has been awarded the Seniors Real Estate Specialist (SRES®) designation by the Seniors Real Estate Specialist Council of the NATIONAL ASSOCIATION OF REALTORS® (NAR).

Thomas holds a Master’s in Counseling along with a Bachelor’s Degree in Organizational and Interpersonal Communications. He has been a licensed realtor since 2004 and represents the third generation of his family in the real estate profession. In addition, Thomas has volunteered with various organizations throughout the community such as VITAS Hospice Care, Rainbow’s Grief Support Group for children, the Stephen Ministry, and the Cobb County Emergency Response Team. Currently, he sits on the Board of the Licensed Professional Counselor’s Association of Georgia.

“I have been trained as a listener, so I am able to understand where people are with their unique real estate needs whether it is due to a death, divorce, empty nest, or aging related issue. Many clients need an attentive listener and gentle guidance so that they can determine what is best for them. With my training, experience, real estate knowledge, and now the SRES® designation, my clients really benefit from a unique combination of skills,” said Thomas.

Thomas joins more than 16,000 real estate professionals in North America who have earned the SRES® designation. All were required to successfully complete a comprehensive course in understanding the needs, considerations, and goals of real estate buyers and sellers aged 55 and older.

Contact the Seniors Real Estate Specialist Council by telephone, (800)500-4564, by e-mail,, or by visiting the SRES website at To speak with Mr. Andre, contact Wilcher Properties Group by telephone, (770)587-9300, or visit the Wilcher Properties Group website,


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