In 2010, a Dunwoody couple’s first child was born with a genetic disorder and lived only a short time. When Reagan Marie Baima’s mother, Cindy Baima, left Northside Hospital after her loss, she held on to her child’s teddy bear for comfort and strength.

Now other couples who lose a child during pregnancy or soon after birth will receive a gift of a teddy bear before they leave Northside. In Reagan Marie’s memory, Cindy and Bob Baima started The Reagan Marie Teddy Bear Fund at Northside to provide any mom who experiences a perinatal loss at the hospital a bear similar to the one the Baimas had.

“While a teddy bear cannot replace a child, the Baimas believe that no mom should ever leave the hospital with empty arms,” Northside said in a press release.

Each bear will include a card with a note of encouragement and a copy of Reagan Marie’s story.

“A teddy bear can bring some meaning and comfort into a situation that is otherwise filled with pain and sorrow,” Bob Baima said. “It is our hope that by sharing our experience with Reagan Marie and ‘her’ teddy bear, others would join us in contributing to the fund.”

Melissa Sisson, director of women’s services at Northside, said the grief a person feels after the death of a baby can be difficult for others to understand. “We are so grateful to the Baima family for their courage and generosity in sharing Reagan Marie’s story with the Northside community and we hope that it will help raise the level of understanding and compassion for families experiencing perinatal loss.”

The Baima’s second child, Nathan, was healthy when he was born at Northside on May 27, the hospital said.


Special sauce for Shepherd Center

Former spinal cord injury patient Billy Hulse of Buckhead and his wife Betty have turned a secret family recipe into a way to say thanks to the Shepherd Center.

Hulse, a patient at the center in 2009, is donating a portion of the proceeds from Cobbie’s Sauce to the center. The sauce was concocted by his mother, Mary Cobb “Cobbie” Hulse, more than 60 years ago and has been a Hulse family staple, embellishing chicken, pork, beef, fish and shrimp.

“A lot of love came out of Cobbie’s kitchen, and I hope to pass some of that love on by giving back to the hospital that continues to give my family and me hope for the future,” Hulse said.


Inspiration onstage

Buckhead residents who see the London stage version of “Driving Miss Daisy” might want to listen carefully to the performance by Boyd Gaines, who plays Boolie Werthan, son of the title character. Gaines, an Atlanta native, told that he modeled parts of his performance on Buckhead Coalition President Sam Massell.

“I knew very few Jewish families in Atlanta, but there were some; when I was doing research for the play, I found myself coming upon interviews with Sam Massell, the first Jewish mayor of Atlanta, so I kind of based my dialect in the show on him,” Gaines told


New director

The Marcus Jewish Community Center of Atlanta has named Gail Luxenberg its new executive director. Luxenberg, formerly executive director of the Jewish Vocational Service in Chicago, will take over Dec. 1. She replaces Howard Hyman, who has been interim CEO for 15 months. “We believe that Gail is the leader who will take our center to an even higher level of performance,” center governance board Chairman David Levy said in a press release.



Leadership DeKalb has enrolled 35 students from schools across the county and the metro region to participate in the Class of 2012 of the Youth Leadership DeKalb program. The 10-month training program emphasizes personal leadership skills and civic engagement.

With sophomore and junior representatives from 20 public and private high schools, the 10-month training program will educate the students on DeKalb County and provide leadership training in areas focused on justice and public safety, health, quality of life, business, government, banking and personal finance, career options, civic engagement and personal etiquette.

Students accepted into the Youth Leadership DeKalb Class of 2012 include Ashton Jordan, Joya Reasor and Kenzie Thompson of Chamblee Charter High School; Madison Dill and Whitney Dixon of Dunwoody High School; and Christopher Bowman, Megan McKinstry and Leigh Peters of Marist School.


Carolyn Axt was named the Sandy Springs/Perimeter Chamber of Commerce’s annual “Woman of Distinction” during the chamber’s meeting Nov. 14. Axt, executive director of Leadership Sandy Springs, was honored for her volunteer work to improve education and the community, said Karen Trylovich, chairwoman of the chamber’s Women’s Business Network, which presents the award.


Anna Stanton, a middle school math teacher at The Epstein School in Sandy Springs, discussed technological innovations and their effect on teaching during a recent presentation at the Georgia Educational Technology Conference.


Scott Henderson Sikes of the Shepherd Center Foundation was to be named a “Fellow in the Association for Healthcare Philanthropy” (FAHP) during the association’s annual international conference in October.


Jamie Braverman of Buckhead recently won three national engineering honors. He received the Innovator Award from the Society of Hispanic Engineers, the Excelencia Award from the Society of Mexican-American Engineers and Scientists, and the Pioneer Award from Great Minds in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics).