Render Freeman - Chair
Render has dedicated his legal career to helping injury victims hold wrongdoers financilly responsible for their carelessness. As a trial attorney, Render has a broad range of experience in litigating complex disputes, including wrongful death, person injury, products liability, motor vehicle and trucking collisions, medial malpractice and more. Before joining Andersen, Tate & Car, P.C. in 2005 he practiced with an Atlanta firm for eleven years where he rose to partnership.
Render was born and raised in Atlanta. During his third year of law school, he was a visiting student at Brooklyn Law School in Brooklyn, New York where he studied securities law and commercial transactions. He and his family have resided in Johns Creek since 1995 where he is an active member of the Johns Creek Presbyterian Church.
WHITNEY BRYANT - CHAIR ELECT
Whitney Bryant (CFP, CRPC) is an investment advisor with Financial Strategies of Georgia, specializing in retirement planning and investment management for individuals and small businesses. As a CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER professional Whitney’s mission is to help clients achieve their financial goals using holistic review and planning strategies. Securities and Investment Advisory services offered through ING Financial Partners. Financial Strategies of Georgia is not a subsidiary of nor controlled by ING Financial Partners.
A native of Atlanta, Whitney graduated with honors from The University of Georgia, where she met her future husband, David. They became members of Perimeter Church after moving to Johns Creek in 2003 and are now the proud parents of two boys, James and Matthew. Whitney has played soccer for 30 years and is an avocational photographer.
MARILYN MARGOLIS - PAST CHAIR
CEO of Emory Johns Creek Hospital, Marilyn began her career at Emory Health more than 30 years ago at Emory University Hospital as a staff nurse in CCU. After caring for patients at the bedside for 15 years, she went to the Emergency Department as the Unit Director and began a career in leadership roles at EHC that included Director of Nursing for emergency services and neurosciences, and Nursing Director for Operations. Marilyn has extensive experience leading quality initiative teams throughout the Emory Healthcare system in areas such as Emergency Service and ICU at Emory University Hospital and Emory University Hospital Midtown.
In 2011, she was named Chief Nursing Officer at Emory Johns Creek Hospital and later became the COO and eventually CEO in 2015. Notably, Marilyn is the recipient of the Nursing Management's Visionary leader award in 2007 and the Georgia Hospital Association's 2013 Lifetime Achievement Award. Marilyn received a bachelors in nursing from Albright College in Reading, PA and a masters degree in nursing administration from the Nell Hodgson Woodruff Emory University School of Nursing. She also has done post graduate work at Harvard Business School and the Woodruff Leadership Academy.
Marilyn is happily married to Tom Willenbrock and they enjoy hiking and boating at Lake Lanier. Kris Davis, Marilyn's daughter is mother to Lucas and Ayden, and is a nurse in Macon, GA, married to Dr. David Davis, a professor at Mercer University. Tom and Marilyn also have two grandchildren in New Jersey, Kelyn and Erin, and visit Krista, Tom's daughter and Bryan Kondravy, her husband, as much as possible!
Skip Rolquin is the owner of Dramatic Water Solutions which is now heading into its 19th year here in Atlanta. Dramatic Water Solutions provides its customers with water filtration alternatives for Homes and Offices and help to provide its customers with an unlimited supply of great tasting water. The company also provides drinking water coolers and has added an office coffee service for its customers who have 20 or more employees.
Skip was born and raised in Lloyd Harbor, NY and has attended both the University of Florida and University of Central Florida where he received a degree in Business Finance. After college Skip worked for SunTrust bank in operations where he worked for 18 years in Bank Support, Automated Report Distribution, Items Processing Manager and finally the Vice President in charge of statewide distribution and transportation in Florida.
Skip has been an active member of the Johns Creek Chamber, Greater North Fulton Chamber, Cumming / Forsyth Chamber, and the Johns Creek Business Association. Skip Attended Leadership North Fulton and made an unsuccessful run for the Johns Creek City Council in 2006. Skip's hobbies include Tennis, Sailing, and Kayaking. Skip and his wife of 34 years, Julie, have lived in Johns Creek for 20 years. He has two adult children.
KENT DAVIES - President & CEO Johns Creek Chamber of Commerce
Kent Davies retired Vice President of the World Financial Group, as well as the Past President of the WFG Foundation. WFG's Worldwide Headquarters is located in Johns Creek. As VP, he worked with large financial services sales force in both the USA and Canada. As President of the WFG Foundation, he lead fund raising efforts, operations and grant distribution to help serve those in need across the world. He is also a licensed Life, Accident & Health Agent and Securities Registered Rep, including Supervisory.
Kent also serves as a board member on Johns Creek Advantage, Johns Creek Arts Center, Trustee Board - Vice Chair for Gwinnett Technology Colleges and as Director of Public Affairs for 70 congregations of his church. He is also a community volunteer in many projects.
Kent and wife Susan met while both attended college at BYU. They have 4 children and 10 grandchildren. Kent also is a community volunteer in many projects, including a program that helps find employment for those in need and directly facilitating an emergency preparedness program involving 200 families through his church. Past positions held include Division Manager for GNC/DCI with responsibility for 1800 franchises and 30 company units and VP of Operations for over 100 restaurants. For recreation Kent enjoys SCUBA diving, travel and spending time with family.
John Bemont (President and CEO, Johns Creek Chamber of Commerce - retired) is past Board Chairman of the Johns Creek Chamber of Commerce. He has lived in the Johns Creek area for sixteen years and was formerly owner of FastFrame of Johns Creek.
John retired from AT&T as Human Resources Director in 1998 at their corporate headquarters in Morristown NJ, after a career of over 30 years serving in operations, marketing and human resources. A corporate relocation specialist, John was a board member of the Employee Relocation Council, a worldwide trade association with over 12,000 members and was elected and served as Chairman of the Board in 1997.
Mr. Bemont has been very active in community organizations having served in leadership roles in the Boy Scouts, the United Way, and various Chambers of Commerce. He is a member of Johns Creek United Methodist Church and serves of the Boards of Directors of both the Johns Creek Advantage. He and his wife Vicki enjoy golf, travel and judging dog shows. He attended UNC Charlotte and served in the United States Marine Corps reserve.
Kelli Buchwald is Community Relations Manager for Northside Hospital, where she promotes Northside’s community services, sponsorships, special events and educational programs. Prior to joining Northside, Buchwald held high profile corporate communications management positions at General Electric, BellSouth and Blue Cross Blue Shield.
Buchwald has been on the Board of Directors for the Johns Creek Business Association since 2005, and was the organization’s President in 2008. In addition, she is on the Boards of Directors of the Rotary Club of Johns Creek (Vice President), the Johns Creek Chamber of Commerce, Leadership Johns Creek and the Johns Creek Arts Center. She was named a “Rising Captain of Industry” from Forsyth Co. News in 2005, and is a graduate of the 2006 Leadership Forsyth Class.
Buchwald grew up in Orlando, Florida, and attended the University of Central Florida and the University of Florida. She has a B.A. in Journalism with a specialty in Advertising and Public Relations.
Kenneth (Ken) Davis
Ken Davis has more than 30 years of experience in the finance and banking industry. After graduating from college and serving six years in the U.S. Army, Ken returned to his hometown of Atlanta to begin his banking career. Prior to joining Renasant Bank, Davis held a number of leadership and executive management positions, across several lines of business, including increasing both commercial and consumer loan and deposit share in North Metro Atlanta.
An Atlanta native, he earned his bachelor’s degree in the Arts from Wake Forest University. He also is a graduate of the American Bankers Association Stonier Graduate School of Banking.
Ken maintains active involvement in several community service organizations. He is an avid member of the Rotary Club of Roswell, and served as past Chairman of the Board of Directors of the Greater North Fulton Chamber of Commerce. In addition, Ken volunteers as President of the Roswell Convention and Visitors Bureau.
Ken and his wife, Miriam, reside in Alpharetta. They have three grown daughters, and are proud grandparents of their new granddaughter. Ken enjoys golf, the arts, and family.
Lee Dawkins, a Georgia native, an insurance agent with over 10 years of experience and with American Family Insurance for over 6 years. Lee not only serves on the Chamber Board, he also is a Scout Master for Local Troops with the Boy Scouts of America. He loves hanging out with his family, camping, hiking, disc golf and flying drones.
Originally from Taiwan, Andy moved to the United States in 1980. While at California State University, he studied Medical Technology. Since then, he has owned a floral shop and a travel company. In 1993, he started the fast food chain, Great Panda and Lon U Chinese & Thai Cuisine. He currently owns and operates Pearl Lian Oriental Restaurant and Bar in Johns Creek. Along with restaurant ownership, Andy also owns shipping centers in Peachtree Corners and Johns Creek.
Linda McCain represents the Johns Creek and Alpharetta areas. She currently serves as Fulton County School Board Vice President. She was first elected to the school board in 2010 and in May 2014 was reelected to her second four-year term. Before serving on the school board, she advocated for children and public education for more than 12 years as a member of local school advisory councils and PTAs in her children's schools. During her time on the school board, she has promoted the efficient and conservative use of taxpayer dollars and the increase accountability of school system stakeholders. In December, 2014, she was appointed to serve on Governor Nathan Deal's Education Advisory Board.
Samantha is Vice President, Financial Sales Manager with First Citizens Bank (Peachtree Parkway). She has been with First Citizens Bank for over 4 years. Samantha grew up in central Florida. She attended the University of South Carolina where she first went into banking. She now has over 21 years of experience in the banking industry.
She has been married to her husband, Ray for 10 years and they have a daughter. She is an avid runner and in her free time she enjoys spending time with her family.
Stuart Miller is the Executive Director of the Johns Creek Arts Center. A native of Savannah, he earned his bachelor’s degree with a double major in History and Theatre from Shorter College and Graduate Degree in Museum Studies from Georgia Southern College. He also holds a Certificate in Arts Administration from the University of Massachusetts/Amherst. Stuart has spent most of the past twenty five years as an educator and administrator for arts organizations in Kansas, Alabama, and Georgia. In the course of his career he has provided the artistic direction for hundreds of art exhibitions, festivals and education programs in the arts. Stuart has served on numerous arts boards and as a grant reviewer for the Georgia Council for the Arts, Florida Department of Cultural Affairs, and the National Endowment for the Arts. He currently is a participant in Leadership Johns Creek Class of 2017.
Stuart Perry, Owner of A Farmers Insurance Agency in Johns Creek, was one of the first to be contracted with Farmers when they began operating in Georgia in 2012. Prior to that he spent several years in the Banking and Employee Benefits Industries. A Chamber Member for 0ver 9 years, Stuart currently Chairs the Ambassador Committee, and received the Chamber’s Leadership Award in 2016, 2017, and 2018. His commitments to the community include sponsoring Chattahoochee High School Athletics, the Johns Creek Symphony Orchestra, and Findley Oaks Elementary PTA. Stuart and his wife Mary are 25 year area residents, and enjoy golf, gardening, and fishing at their cabin at Lake Blackshear in S.W. Georgia.
Jeffrey Smith, MD
Jeffrey Smith, MD is a board eligible Orthopaedic Surgeon with OrthoAtlanta and fellowship trained in the subspecialty of foot and ankle surgery. Dr Smith offers comprehensive treatment options for a variety of foot and ankle conditions including sports injuries, post-traumatic deformity, congenital deformity, acute fractures and more. He is certified with American Board of Orthopaedic Surgery (Board Eligible) and Suspecialty: Foot and Ankle.
Matt Tesvich, M.B.A. is IT Site Head for the Alcon campus in Johns Creek. The campus designs, produces, and distributes eye care products to enhance sight and improve people’s lives and includes a state-of-the-art manufacturing facility. Matt is a well-rounded executive with extensive International business and technical expertise in Asia/Pacific, European, and North American regions. He directed the IT build-out of massive facility expansions, and previously led numerous successful SAP / ERP roll-outs. Other strengths include building rapport, executing programs, and leading teams with a long-term vision.
Matt earned a M.B.A. in Finance from the J. Mack Robinson College of Business at Georgia State University and a B.S. in Information Systems from Louisiana State University. Matt and his wonderful wife Sheri are blessed parents of three children.
Rees is Vice President of the real estate development and construction services team overseeing all manner of improvements, development, and construction-related services. Rees has been with the company for over 18 years. He has extensive development experience with a portfolio totaling more than 6 million square feet, including Johns Creek, Technology Park/Atlanta, and Stanton Springs master-planned mixed use business parks, as well as corporate headquarters for such names as Verizon, Disney, Delta Airlines, and Turner Broadcasting.
Prior to TPA Group, Rees served as Senior Development Director for Holder Properties Atlanta and Director of the Corporate Services Division of Patton Construction Company in Atlanta.
Education: Auburn University