);
Connect with us

City Government

Meet the City Officials who Keep Peachtree Corners Humming: Brandon Branham Feature

Published

on

Photos by George Hunter

Consider a high-performance vehicle — bright, shiny and powerful. It leaps ahead quickly when it needs to, but can also settle back to a comfortable cruising speed. It’s nimble, able to turn on a dime or smoothly reverse direction, if need be.

Ever wished for a vehicle like that? The good news is that if you live within the city limits of Peachtree Corners, you already have one.

Gwinnett County’s largest and newest city has a most efficient “vehicle” for governing its home turf — a staff helmed by experienced department heads who put their shoulders to the wheel, are adept at balancing the sometimes-clashing interests of residents, the business community and other constituencies and aren’t afraid to embrace unconventional approaches.

Assistant City Manager- Brandon Branham

In a twist on an old saw, it can be said that behind every city manager stands a good assistant city manager. But Brandon Branham does more than support his boss in running the city. He wears an additional major hat — chief technology officer.

Local Motors’ Olli, second generation.

It’s not the most frequent combination of duties for a municipal official, but Branham seems to thrive on it. His responsibilities are broad spectrum. He compares his role to private business, in which Johnson, the city manager, would be chief executive officer and Branham would have chief operating officer stripes.

His operational responsibilities include imbuing departments with strategy and efficiency updates, handling economic development with an emphasis on recruitment, overseeing Innovative and Smart Cities programs, managing facilities and doing partner engagement and management with the Curiosity Lab. Whew!

“We also make sure we’re up to speed, pushing the envelope on the latest cutting-edge technology,” Branham added for good measure.

In that vein, his proudest moment as a tech chief was when the city achieved NIST-171 compliance for the Curiosity Lab Network. He said that’s the highest level of data security for unclassified data an organization can achieve.

“We have a pretty robust security network that blocks intrusions. We get attempts all the time,” he shared.

No one day is the same as another, he said, and that’s part of what jazzes him as he begins his day. One day he might be immersed in some technical aspect of Curiosity Lab, the next he could be helping with long-range financial projections and the day after THAT might find him out of the building taking a gander at a public works project.

All in a day’s work, to be sure.

And, yes, there are roadblocks on occasions, but Branham said an easy-going personality helps navigate and smooth out any rough spots.

He seems to relish startups; he assisted in the birth of nearby Sandy Springs as a contract employee for CH2MHill. He came over to Peachtree Corners in the same capacity before landing on the city payroll.

“What we’ve been able to accomplish in nine years in Peachtree Corners has been pretty impressive,” he said.

On a personal note, Branham said that living in The Corners and going out to dinner usually brings him attention, with folks wanting to ask him about some facet of the city and its government

Continue Reading

City Government

Peachtree Corners named Finalist for Gwinnett Chamber Small Business Awards

Published

on

The City of Peachtree Corners has been named a finalist for the 2022 Gwinnett Chamber Small Business Awards. The annual awards program is designed to recognize entrepreneurs and small businesses in the greater Gwinnett region. This year’s program will be held at 12Stone Church in Lawrenceville on Friday, December 9, 9 a.m.

“We are honored to be a finalist for the Support System Award by the Gwinnett Chamber,” said City Manager Brian Johnson. “As a city government, we are dedicated to supporting our small business community.

“We put a large focus on their success by offering many free tools including grant programs, incentive programs, streamlined planning and development, and local organization support,” he added.

Honoring individuals and organizations alike, there will be awards in 10 categories:

  • Community Contributor Award,
  • Culture Creator Award,
  • Emerging Entrepreneur Award,
  • Founder Award,
  • Launch Award,
  • Minority-Owned/Woman-Owned Small Business Award,
  • Small Business Award (0-5 employees),
  • Small Business Award (6-24 employees),
  • Small Business Award (25+ employees, and
  • Support System Award.

“Small businesses account for 90% of all businesses in Gwinnett and are a critical component to our thriving economy,” shared Nick Masino, President and CEO of the Gwinnett Chamber. “We congratulate Peachtree Corners on their designation and look forward to celebrating with them at this upcoming awards program.”

For more information on this event or to register to attend, visit GwinnettChamber.org/Small-Business-Awards.

Continue Reading

City Government

Town Hall Hosted by Peachtree Corners Councilman Phil Sadd

Published

on

Peachtree Corners Councilman Phil Sadd held a town hall meeting at the Winters Chapel United Methodist Church on Nov 2. It was attended by a group of approximately 75 residents.

As part of the presentation, Sadd invited Gwinnett County Police Department’s Major Edward Restrepo and Dunwoody Councilman Tom Lambert to be part of his panel.

The presentation included information regarding a variety of topics. They included:

  • The Forum current state / future vision,
  • Key Construction Project Updates (including Spalding Drive widening; Winters Chapel / Spalding Drive; River Exchange / Holcomb Bridge; New Town Farms neighborhood; and Winters Chapel intersection at Dunwoody Club Drive),
  • Multi-use trail update,
  • Peachtree Corners Town Center update,
  • Curiosity Lab Innovation Center update,
  • What is on the November 8 ballot, and
  • Peachtree Corners Crime Prevention Initiatives.

The audience had the opportunity to ask questions of each panelist. Major Restrepo gave them greater insight on how the use of technology has enabled the police to quickly apprehend criminals and prevent future crimes.

According to feedback from one of the attendees, Major Restrepo’s explanation of how law enforcement works to contain and control crime in our area was not only helpful but very encouraging. They said they went home feeling more secure and less concerned about crime control in the area and in the entire county.

Councilman Sadd began holding these town hall meetings in 2013. He believes that they are an important part of representing the city’s residents.

“I believe that it is very important to meet with constituents and residents to provide them with information regarding the city,” said Sadd. “These types of events not only allow me to provide our residents with information and answer questions, but also allow me to hear directly from them about their concerns, appreciation and what they expect from the city in the future.”

From left, Councilman Phil Sadd, Gwinnett County Police Department’s Major Edward Restrepo and Dunwoody Councilman Tom Lambert

In addition to the audience, there were several local leaders and elected officials that attended the town hall. Attendees included:

  • Georgia House Representative Beth Moore,
  • Peachtree Corners Councilman Eric Christ,
  • Peachtree Corners Councilman Joe Sawyer,
  • Board of Education District 3 Representative Mary Kay Murphy,
  • Georgia State House Candidate Scott Hilton,
  • Georgia State House Candidate Ruwa Romman,
  • Georgia State Senate Candidate Austin McDonald,
  • Peachtree Corners DDA Representative Tim Le,
  • Peachtree Corners Planning Commission Member Alan Kaplan,
  • Peachtree Corners Zoning Board of Appeals Member Marcia Brandes, and
  • Winters Chapel United Methodist Pastor Steve Ring.

As it is an election year, Sadd spoke about the importance of voting. Sample ballots were made available to those in the audience at the completion of the program.

Continue Reading

City Government

Peachtree Corners Enlists IMS to Conduct Pavement Survey

Published

on

Laser Crack Measurement System (LCMS-2)

Residents of Peachtree Corners will soon have an objective assessment of the town’s pavement. Using funds dedicated to infrastructure management, the City has contracted with Infrastructure Management Services (IMS) to conduct the pavement survey.

The company has over 30 years of experience in the field of pavement management and has helped municipalities throughout the United States and Canada. IMS will be responsible for completing an objective pavement condition survey as well as a budget and rehabilitation analysis.

IMS survey vehicles hit the streets in early October using their Laser Crack Measurement System (LCMS-2). The LCMS-2 is a 3D imaging sensor that collects continuous 3D pavement imagery along with rutting and roughness measurements.

How it works

The LCMS-2 will determine surface distresses including load cracking, block cracking, rutting, raveling, reflective cracking, loss of section, bleeding, edge distress and patched areas. Information will be collected on a segment-by-segment basis. The collected data and imagery will be linked to the City’s existing GIS data system.

Once the data has been collected, the City will create a work program using a Pavement Condition Index (PCI) that will rate road segments between poor and excellent. The City will then use the PCI rankings to create an infrastructure work plan based on actual road conditions.

This data-based planning will allow Peachtree Corners to provide more efficient and equitable repairs and maximize the City’s repair budget.

Continue Reading

Read the Digital Edition

Subscribe

Peachtree Corners Life

Capitalist Sage

Topics and Categories

Recent Posts

Authors

Trending

Copyright © 2022 Mighty Rockets LLC, powered by WordPress.

Get Weekly Updates!

Get Weekly Updates!

Don't miss out on the latest news, updates, and stories about Peachtree Corners.

Check out our podcasts: Peachtree Corners Life, Capitalist Sage and the Ed Hour

You have Successfully Subscribed!