Hillgrove High School Navy JROTC cadets capture nationals win

Hillgrove won this year’s Navy JROTC Orienteering Championship in Ague Dulce, California. The annual competition brings the best orienteers from nearly 600 NJROTC units from around the country together.

Hillgrove won this year’s Navy JROTC Orienteering Championship in Ague Dulce, California. The annual competition brings the best orienteers from nearly 600 NJROTC units from around the country together.

Story by Sally Litchfield, Marietta Daily Journal

Hillgrove High School Navy JROTC cadets are national champions. Twenty-nine Orienteering teams from all corners of the country recently converged on Vasquez Rocks Natural Area in Agua Dulce, California, near Los Angeles, where Hillgrove won this year’s Navy JROTC Orienteering Championship. The annual competition brings the best orienteers from nearly 600 NJROTC units from around the country together to test their navigation skills in locating controls (checkpoints) in unfamiliar and rough terrain with only the aid of a map and a compass.

Hillgrove’s cadets made their fourth consecutive appearance at the national competition and were one of five schools representing Georgia and Northeast FL. After finishing third, second, and second in the nation the past three years, Hillgrove’s Orienteers were able to take the final step in capturing their first Championship; and, they did it in dominating fashion.

Hillgrove nearly swept all team categories, with the Varsity team easily capturing first, Junior Varsity placing second and the Freshman finishing first. Overall, Hillgrove captured a total of 480 of a possible 500 points, well ahead of the second place total of 370. Individually, 11 of Hillgrove’s 14 competitors received medals, all placing in the top five for the two-day competition, in their respective categories.

Outstanding individual performances were turned in by Jacob Gallichio, who is the male Varsity champion, and Mason Blum, who finished second. Jennifer Harnage is the female Varsity champion for the second consecutive year, with Mary Smith finishing second. In the female JV category, Nadia Daraseng captured the title, with Elena Mortensen finishing second and Eslen Trumble fifth. Peyton Valencia was fifth in the male JV category and in the 9th grade division, Keyana Fields won the girls competition and Luke Ballentine and Lucas Schultz finished third and fifth, respectively.

Cadets, most of whom had never traveled to California, also had the opportunity to explore the area with visits to see the Hollywood sign, Santa Monica Pier, Rodeo Drive, Hollywood Walk of Fame, and a day at Universal Studios. Hillgrove’s cadets and parents would like to thank the individuals and local businesses that supported them with generous donations made to help offset the significant cost of travel. While enjoying their new title of National Champions, Hillgrove’s cadets are already preparing to defend their title at next year’s nationals, currently planned for Eastern Pennsylvania.

Legislative Affairs

Atlanta Metropolitan Council members met with Congressman David Scott’s (GA-13) District Director Isaac DoDoo at his Smyrna, Georgia Office, October 17, 2018, to brief him on “U.S. Merchant Marine, U.S.-Flag Merchant Marine, A Critical Economic and National Security Asset.” Depicted are (L-R), Council VP Youth Programs Bill Wilkerson, Congressman David Scott’s District Director Isaac DoDoo, and Council VP Legislative Affairs Don Giles.

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RADM Alan J. Reyes to speak at the Navy's 243rd Birthday Celebration

RADM Alan J. Reyes, Command

RADM Alan J. Reyes, Command

Rear Admiral Alan J. Reyes , SC, USN, Commander, Navy Expeditionary Logistics Support Group will be keynote speaker at The Navy League of the United States, Atlanta Metro Council’s Navy’s 243rd Birthday Celebration. “It is an honor to have Rear Admiral Reyes join us in our biggest event of the year,” said council president Capt. Harley T. Jones, USNR (Ret.).

Rear Adm. Alan Reyes is the son of a retired Navy chief warrant officer and earned a Bachelor of Science from the U.S. Naval Academy in 1990 and a Master of Business Administration from the University of Virginia in 2000.

He has served as supply officer, USS Birmingham (SSN 695); Navy Acquisition Contracting intern, Naval Air Systems Command; assistant officer community manager, Office of Supply Corps Personnel; and flag lieutenant/aide to the Commander, Naval Sea Systems Command.

Affiliating with the Navy Reserve (NR) in 1998, he has completed reserve assignments with Naval Audit Service Headquarters (HQ), Navy Cargo Handling Battalion 10 and U.S. Special Operations Command. He has commanded Navy Cargo Handling Battalion 8, NR U.S. Navy Fleet and Industrial Supply Center Norfolk Det. 206, NR Naval Supply Systems Command (NAVSUP) Fleet Logistics Center Bahrain HQ and 2nd Navy Expeditionary Logistics Regiment.

His mobilization assignments include service as commanding officer, Navy Customs Battalion Papa, in Kuwait and Iraq; operations/plans officer for Naval Expeditionary Logistics Support Group Forward Headquarters; and logistics officer for Commander, Task Force 56. In 2010, he deployed to Haiti aboard USNS Comfort (T-AH-20), leading humanitarian assistance and disaster relief logistics efforts. Most recently, he served as deputy chief of staff, Reserve Operations, NAVSUP Global Logistics Support.

He is qualified as a Submarine Supply Corps warfare officer and Navy Expeditionary Supply Corps officer. Personal awards include the Meritorious Service Medal (three awards), Navy/Marine Corps Commendation Medal (six awards), Joint Service Achievement Medal and Navy/Marine Corps Achievement Medal (two awards).

In his civilian career, he is senior vice president of operations, programs and entertainment for the United Services Organization (USO), leading all aspects of global mission delivery at military installations, forward operating bases and airports around the world.

Legislative Affairs - Congressman Ferguson

Atlanta Metropolitan Council members met with Congressman Drew Ferguson (GA-3) at his Newnan, Georgia Office, August 2, 2018, to brief him on "U.S. Coast Guard, Semper Paratus: Always Ready." Depicted are (L-R), Council VP Youth Programs Bill Wilkerson, Congressman Drew Ferguson, and Council VP for Legislative Affairs Don Giles

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Cobb County Recognition of Viet Nam Era Vets

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Hundreds of Vietnam War veterans from Cobb and surrounding counties will be shown recognition Saturday that they and many of their peers did not receive upon returning home decades ago.

The Cobb County Board of Commissioners is hosting a Certificate of Honor and Lapel Pin Ceremony at 2 p.m. Saturday at the Cobb Civic Center. About 750 veterans have RSVP’ed for the event, though organizers are expecting about 550 to 600 to make it to Saturday’s ceremony, according to Brian Zeringue, director of the public information division of the Georgia Department of Veterans Service.

The public is also invited to attend the event to help honor the veterans in attendance.

Click here for information.



For over 25 years the Atlanta Metro Council has participated in the Annual Memorial Day Wreath Lying ceremony at Marietta National Cemetery. It is a day to remember and honor all the men and woman who died while serving in the country’s armed forces. 

This year, Council Director and Treasurer CAPT Bob Wise, USNR (Ret.) had help from cadets in the Warrior Division and NARS B-1 units. A little drizzle did not stop these cadets from participating. Also attending were a Commanding Officer and two Chiefs.

To the men and women who served our country, Thank You.

CAPT Mark Pimpo to Speak at the 25th Annual Youth Awards Banquet


Mark Pimpo currently serves as a Business Consultant for Chick-fil-A Inc. in Atlanta, Georgia.   Prior to joining the Chick-fil-A team, he worked for Under Armour, Inc. in Baltimore, Maryland, where he was the Global Supply Chain Chief of Staff and Senior Director for Sourcing, Connected Fitness Products.   Mark served in the United States Navy for 27 years as a Supply Corps Officer, retiring as a Captain.   His tours of duty included service on surface combatants, submarines, and with Special Operations Forces.  His last assignment on active duty was as Commanding Officer,  Navy Supply Corps School in Newport, Rhode Island.

Mark attended the United States Naval Academy, graduating with a BS in Political Science and was Co-Captain of the 1988 Navy Football Team.   He received his MBA from Brenau University and earned a Masters degree in Strategic Studies from the Army War College in Carlisle, Pennsylvania.

Mark is originally from Cleveland, Ohio and enjoys playing golf, mixed doubles tennis, large mouth bass fishing, and is a passionate Cleveland sports fan.  He and his wife, Tracy, live in Newnan, Georgia and they love spending time with family & friends, as well as supporting their church and Fellowship of Christian Athletes.  They have two grown children, McCall and Demetrius.