Chattahoochee Chatter: New school board member ties the knot

January 9, 2013 

Shannon Heflin won the July 31 election to represent District 7 on the Muscogee County School Board. But the board member who will be sworn in Monday to replace Norvene Marvets won't be named Heflin. That's because her name is Shannon Smallman now.

She married fellow Coldwell Banker Commercial/Kennon, Parker, Duncan & Key real estate agent Ernie Smallman on New Year's Eve.

You mean you missed the wedding? So did the rest of Columbus, except for the only invited guests: their combined four sons, ages 4-8 -- oh, and the officiant, the Rev. Jimmy Elder. He also blessed their new home, where they married in the front room.

Well, the home is new to them, but the Columbus Historic District house is 130 years old. They have been renovating it for about eight months as they merge their houses.

And their honeymoon?

"No honeymoon," Heflin, er, Mrs. Smallman said with a laugh. "Our honeymoon is still renovating this house. … It's livable now, but we'll be working on it probably forever."

Mazel tov.


A new year, a new job? Some of you may be in luck.

A recent survey of 2,600 employers by job site, CareerBuilder, found that 26 of hiring managers expect to add full-time, permanent workers in 2013. That's actually up 3 percentage points from 2012.

The hiring forecast also said competition will be keen for skilled labor, with compensation likely to improve this year.

CareerBuilder CEO Matt Ferguson noted that more than 60 percent of U.S. companies say they are in better financial shape at this point than they were a year ago, with 40 percent indicating sales have increased over the past six months.

But, he cautioned, the precarious global economy will keep companies from going on any major hiring blitzes. In fact, 9 percent of employers expect to reduce their headcount, up from 7 percent a year ago.

Of the balance of companies, 55 percent expect no change in staff sizes, while 11 percent are uncertain what they will do.

All of that said, what are the top jobs in demand this year? Try sales and information technology, both fields that should see salary increases, according to CareerBuilder.

Other fields on the hiring rise include:

• Customer service

• Engineering

• Production

• Business development

• Administrative

• Research and development

• Accounting and finance

• Marketing.

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