Norcross News -January 2019

Norcross News Covering No cross, Peachtree Corners & Duluth Volume 29, No. 1 • JANUARY 2019 PRICELESS ISSUE! • LOCAL, POSITIVE COMMUNITY NEWS H ometown N ews A tlanta Gwinnett Starts 2019 with County’s First Elected African American Judge Newly elected in 2018, Gwinnett State Court Judge Ronda Colvin-Leary received her gavel from State Court Judge Joseph C. Iannazzone after she was formally sworn into office. As 2019 commences Gwinnett has already made his- tory with Ronda Colvin-Leary, the county’s first elected black judge, who was sworn in this past fall, in Septem- ber of last year. Verification came from the county’s Administrative Office of the Courts. It’s historic twice over, because she’s also the first black official elected to any Gwinnett position as well. This 2018 milestone was a fitting way to help cap the recent Bicentennial of Gwin- nett County, which began back in 1818. Judge Ronda Colvin-Leary has been a member of the Georgia Bar since 2001. An Alabama native, she gradu- ated from Auburn and earned her law degree from Florida Coastal School of Law. Before her election to the Gwinnett County State Court she was Solicitor for the City of Wind- er, GA, and ran her own law practice in Lawrenceville. Gwinnett County State Court handles civil actions, misdemeanors and traffic violations.The proactive Judge Colvin-Leary likes the role of her position in the judicial system because she can address seemingly small legal issues before they escalate. “I like to think” she says, Continued on page 11 Non-Profit with a Heart – The DDD Foundation In recent years, the vital link between good oral/den- tal care and overall physical health has become clearly established. Even so, access to dental care for many peo- ple with developmental dis- abilities has been virtually non-existent. The DDD Foun- dation, Inc. [Dentistry for the Developmentally Disabled] of Atlanta is a true “non-profit with a heart” and the only private dental clinic in Georgia with professionals exclu- sively serving patients with developmental disabilities. When the only local state facility for persons with intel- lectual disabilities closed down in 1997, Dr. Deidra Ron- deno recognized the desperate need for these services. She was one of the few [then and now] dentists who had spe- cialized training in this area. She founded the DDD Founda- tion in 1999 as a non-profit to fill the growing service gap. Its mission over the past twenty years has been to “offer accessible, comprehensive dental treatment to patients with developmental disabilities.” This includes both children and adults. With a dedicated staff, they see up to 20 patients a day and around 4,603 annually. Those seeking service come from 83 Georgia counties, often entailing long travel time and the necessity to stay overnight in Atlanta. Whether young or older, developmentally disabled patients can be non-verbal about their dental problems and perhaps both disoriented and frightened. Significant dental problems and their solutions can be daunting even for patients without disabilities. HAPPY NEW YEAR! Continued on page 4