The local outlet of Mountain High Outfitters was named the Buckhead Business of the Year for 2015 at the Buckhead Business Association’s annual luncheon on Feb. 25.

Christopher Groom (right) of Mountain High Outfitters accepts the Business of the Year award from new Buckhead Business Association president David Coxon at the BBA’s annual luncheon Feb. 25 at Flourish. (Photo John Ruch)

Christopher Groom, founder and CEO of the Alabama-based outdoor gear and clothing chain, accepted the award, given to a growing and charitable business, at the event held at the Flourish event hall on Maple Drive. Mountain High operates another Atlanta location in Ponce City Market.

Other Business of the Year nominees included Keri Gold Salon, the King & Duke restaurant, Sally B’s Skin Yummies and the Seven Lamps restaurant.

The Entrepreneurs of the Year award went to Justin Amick and William Stallworth of the Painted Pin bowling and bar facility. The Buckhead Beautification Award was given to the Garden Hills Pool.

The Sam Massell Bullish on Buckhead Award—newly named for the famed former Atlanta mayor and Buckhead Coalition founder—went to Sheffield Hale, president and CEO of the Atlanta History Center. Hale spokes about coming attractions, including the historic Cyclorama painting of the Civil War’s Battle of Atlanta, a “citywide treasure” that will move to the History Center later this year.

Atlanta History Center President and CEO Sheffield Hale speaks at the Buckhead Business Association’s Feb. 25 luncheon after receiving the Sam Massell Bullish on Buckhead Award. (Photo John Ruch)

The keynote speaker was Georgia State University President Mark Becker, who noted that “we’re right here in Buckhead as well” with GSU’s Robinson College of Business’s graduate programs on Peachtree Road. He spoke about Georgia Perimeter College’s recent merger with GSU, which he said came about due to GSU’s success in boosting graduation rates for all students. Becker also outlined GSU’s plans to redevelop the Turner Field site downtown, explaining that he first heard the Atlanta Braves were leaving from Atlanta City Council President Ceasar Mitchell, who suggested that GSU consider purchasing the site.

New BBA president David Coxon of Georgia Primary Bank took the gavel at the luncheon. Outgoing president Greg Davis of Metcalf Davis CPAs said that in the past year, the BBA added nearly 100 new members, of whom about half are 35 or younger. He also said that Rachel Thorn, the Buckhead resident killed last week in a Pharr Road fire, is the daughter of former BBA president Elizabeth Gill. Seven other residents were displaced by the fire, Davis said, adding, “Fortunately, in Buckhead, we know they’ll be taken care of.”

Georgia State University President Mark Becker delivers the keynote address at the Buckhead Business Association luncheon Feb. 25. (Photo John Ruch)

John Ruch

John Ruch is an Atlanta-based journalist. Previously, he was Managing Editor of Reporter Newspapers.