Chattahoochee Chatter: Leaders may bring home the 'gold'

September 26, 2012 

With community leaders from Columbus visiting Oklahoma City through Friday, it's worth taking note of one organization that is on the agenda for the 19th annual Inter-City Leadership Conference.

And that would be USA Canoe/Kayak, a nonprofit group tasked with promoting various water sports and getting athletes trained and ready for the 2016 Summer Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro.

The Columbus connection? The city has a history with both the Olympics and now with a whitewater course that is being shaped from the rocks and water flow of the Chattahoochee River in the downtown area.

It was in 1996 that Columbus scored big by participating in the Summer Games held in Atlanta. A satellite venue, it hosted the women's fastpitch softball competition, one in which USA grabbed a gold medal. For the city, it was the impetus for construction of the South Commons softball facilities and the Columbus Civic Center, which residents and visitors enjoy today.

The 2.5-mile whitewater course is a work in progress and has its naysayers who believe it will be a folly that fails to attract the number of visitors that have been projected after it opens in 2013.

That's why the 85 local folks acting as information and idea sponges in Oklahoma City this week should pay very close attention to the USA Canoe/Kayak people and their presentations.

The Oklahoma state capital also is a hub for amateur sports, noted Mike Gaymon, president and chief executive officer of the Greater Columbus Georgia Chamber of Commerce, which organized the inter-city visit. That makes this a valuable opportunity for brainstorming future possibilities for Columbus as a sports market.

"The Olympic trials are there in Oklahoma City, and the (Amateur Softball Association) is headquartered there," he said. "One of the things I think we're going to hear and see is the kind of impact that their amateur sports program is bringing to that region, and it's phenomenal. They're bringing in NCAA finals; they're bringing in regionals. They've understood how the business of amateur sports is just that."

•••

Now it's time to let this thought percolate inside your head. Which occupation most needs a dose of coffee to get through work each day? A teacher, a nurse, a scientist or a food-service worker?

If you chose the latter, you're correct, but actually they're all on the list.

In a world of relentless studies, job site CareerBuilder.com and Dunkin' Donuts found the top 10 jobs that need java on a regular basis to perk up their brains while toiling away.

More specifically, it said the majority of us need at least two cups a day in the workplace and that younger colleagues really crave it for energy and motivation. Those in the Northeast are more likely to gulp the brew on the job, while more women on average require coffee to remain productive.

Where do you fit by occupation? Here's the Top 10 list of workers who, according to the survey, are coffee-holics when earning their paycheck:

1. Food preparation/service workers

2. Scientists

3. Sales representatives

4. Marketing/public relations professionals

5. Nurses (nurse, nurse practitioner or physician assistant)

6. Editors/writers/media workers

7. Business executives

8. Teachers/instructors (K-12)

9. Engineering technicians/support

10. IT managers/network administrators

So with all of that knowledge now stirring inside your noggin, don't forget that this Saturday is -- you guessed it -- National Coffee Day. Drink up!

-- Ledger-Enquirer staff writers contribute to this report. Contact them at chatter@ledger-enquirer.com.

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