Buford Business Alliance
News & Updates
March 2024 | Issue 16 www.VisitBuford.com
Buford Business Alliance News
Welcome new members!
  • 3:14 Custom Creations (Eddie Davis)
  • ASEA-Redox (Doria Stewart)
  • Comparion Insurance Agency (Romaine Washington)
  • Goodlife Security Solutions (Robin Hibler)
  • Meander Brewing Company (Paul Bushell)
  • Medi Plans of Georgia (Judy Williams)
  • Spectrum Autism Support Group (Laura Vladick)
  • Synovus (Val Love)
BBA Board of Directors appoints Ed Rodriguez as Membership Chair
The BBA Board of Directors appointed Ed Rodriguez as the Membership Chairperson.

Ed will be invaluable to the organization as he is taking on a hybrid role concentrating on obtaining new members and member retention.
Get to know Ed Rodriguez
Ed Rodriguez, a financial professional at Piedmont Financial Group, is dedicated to guiding families and professionals toward their financial goals. Actively involved in community service, he supports organizations like Habitat for Humanity and the Atlanta Food Bank. Ed has held leadership roles in his homeowner's association and the Atlanta Fire United Soccer Club.
Committed to mentorship, he serves as a DECA judge and mentor and leads literacy workshops. In 2019, Ed received the Mentor of the Year award for his exemplary leadership in the YearUp mentoring program.
Ed resides in Buford with his wife, Kristin, and their teenagers, Ava and Gabriel, who both attend Buford High School. Their household is completed by their rescue dogs, Murphy and Toby.
Any person who pays for one yearly BBA membership at $99 can register additional businesses for just $50 each.

Contact Freda Kalina if you would like to take advantage of this steal of a deal! Call/text her at 770-596-8178 or email her at [email protected].
After-hours meetings will be on Mondays beginning in May
A survey was sent out to existing members asking for input on which day works best for them for the BBA After-hours meetings.

An overwhelming majority voted to move the monthly After-hours meetings to the second Monday of each month.

Beginning in May 2024, the BBA monthly After-hours meetings will be on the second Monday of each month.

All BBA Breakfast meetings will remain on the third Tuesday of each month at the Tannery Row Ale House.
Grace Upon Grace, our 2024 Q1 non-profit
The Buford Business Alliance’s first non-profit of the quarter for 2024 is an organization called Grace Upon Grace. Buford resident Maria Sharrett founded Grace Upon Grace in 2022 to help bridge the gap in services for students with disabilities, especially post-graduation.

Their mission statement says it all — “The mission of Grace Upon Grace is to create a Christ-centered movement recognizing all of God's children as being fearfully and wonderfully made. The world will no longer see the disabilities, and will instead see “infinite” possibilities. Grace Upon Grace will provide education, comfort, community partnerships, and post-secondary opportunities that will shape the future and bring hope to the families we support.”

Through the community’s support, Grace Upon Grace was able to do great things in 2023. 

  • They provided a Buford graduate a full scholarship to attend Kennesaw State University’s Academy for Inclusive Learning and Social Growth. This graduate will attend the Academy which offers programs to young adults with intellectual and developmental disabilities. 
  • They were able to provide five families with Christmas.
  • They assisted several teachers by providing them with donations to support their students.
  • They shopped for the Buford City School’s Stuff the Bus Holiday Toy Drive with a Buford Special Education class to help teach life skills.
  • They hosted their first-ever golf tournament fundraiser.

On Mar. 2, they will have their second annual Inclusive Grace Upon Grace Pageant held at the BHS Performing Arts Center. The pageant is open to girls ages 4 to 19+ and being an inclusive pageant, girls with disabilities are encouraged to join in on the fun. Those with disabilities have their fees waived and are offered extra ways to make them feel like a queen.

Here are the ways that members of the Buford Business Alliance can help Grace Upon Grace’s mission.

  • Sponsor or support the upcoming pageant on Mar. 2. Click here for more details.
  • Donate at graceupongracegives.org.
  • Share the word about their book “Wonderfully Super.”
  • Let them know if you know of a business that would partner with them to employ one of their clients.
  • Spread the word about Grace Upon Grace and their mission.
Meeting Sponsorships Still Available
There are After-hours and Breakfast meeting sponsorships still available.

Hosting a meeting gives you a unique opportunity to really sell your business to the other alliance members. It is a great way to promote your business and make new connections.

To host an After-hours meeting, you must host the event at your business or find another suitable location large enough for the meeting. You must also provide food and drinks or have a bar or other way for attendees to purchase their own drinks. After-hours meetings usually run from 5:30 to 7 p.m.

To host a Breakfast meeting, you do not have to host the event at your business as all breakfast meetings are held at the Tannery Row Ale House from 8 to 9 a.m.. You must provide breakfast-type food and drinks (coffee is provided by Tannery Row Ale House).

If you are interested in sponsoring a meeting, please call/text Freda Kalina at 770-596-8178 or email her at [email protected].
Available Meeting Dates:

May 21 - Breakfast Meeting

June 18 - Breakfast Meeting

July 8 - After-Hours Meeting
July 16 - Breakfast Meeting

August 12 - After-Hours Meeting
August 20 - Breakfast Meeting

September 9 - After-Hours Meeting
September 17 - Breakfast Meeting

October 7 - After-Hours Meeting
October 15 - Breakfast Meeting
BBA Member News and Promotions
Freda Kalina expands into hosting events at Tannery Row Ale House
Look for events every month at the Tannery Row Ale House at 554 West Main Street in Buford.

On March 9, Freda is hosting a Saint Patrick's Day Festival from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.
On April 6, Freda and the Tannery Row Ale House present the 1st annual Buford Bridal Expo.

Anyone interested in participating in either of these events, please contact Freda at 770-596-8178.
Your business could be featured here!
Do you have an upcoming event, sale or promotion?

Tell us about it and it could be featured here!

Send the details to Alicia at [email protected]!
BBA Member Perks
Get your business mentioned in the new BBA monthly email newsletter
Members are eligible to have their special events or promotions mentioned in the new monthly BBA newsletter.

Simply send the information by email to Alicia Payne and she will be able to insert it into the next month's newsletter.

All submissions must be turned in no later than the 20th of each month to make the following month's newsletter.
BBA adds more benefits to membership

Members of the Buford Business Alliance now get more benefits than ever before.

Member benefits include:
  • Two monthly networking events
  • Multiple community events including the Holiday Parade and Festival and the Spring Festival
  • Short social media mention once every six months for each member on the alliance's social media accounts
  • Free directory listing on the BBA website
  • BBA will promote member's ribbon-cutting ceremonies and other special events via social media
  • Members' special events or promotions are eligible to be mentioned in the BBA monthly email newsletter
  • Members receive discounts with Inside Buford for advertising, consulting and design services.

For more information contact the BBA at [email protected].