Winter 2016


March 6
The Georgia Bridal Show

March 7-9
The Builder and Remodeler Expo & Conference

March 11-13
American Craft Council Atlanta Show

March 12-13
2016 Model Train Show

March 18-20
Spring Atlanta Home Show

March 30-31
Southeast Design-2-Part Show

April 2-3
The Gluten Free & Allergen Friendly Expo

April 16-17
Alive Expo Presents The Natural Products & Green Living Expo

April 23-24
Atlanta Preparedness Expo

Click here for more events!


Oumy Badiane, Housekeeper

Maria Luisa Carreno, Banquet Server

Yodit Mamo, Banquet Server

Melvin Mann, Senior Set Up Supervisor

Nicholas Panter, Sous Chef

Mactar Sall, Banquet Server

Cheik Sy, Set Up Attendant

Walter Williams, Security Officer


Kirsten Gleaves, Director of Food and Beverage, Cobb-Marietta Coliseum & Exhibit Hall Authority




Earl SmithAfter 19 years, Earl Smith has announced his retirement from the Cobb-Marietta Coliseum & Exhibit Hall Authority. His contributions to the  Cobb Galleria Centre, Cobb Energy Performing Arts Centre , ArtsBridge Foundation and the entire Cobb County community are immeasurable.

Smith was Chairman of the Authority until 2013 and is a former Chairman of the Cobb County Board of Commissioners, the Cobb Chamber of Commerce, and Chairman Emeritus and namesake of Friends of the Earl Smith Strand Theatre. In 2015, the plaza outside of the Cobb Energy Centre was dedicated to Smith and his wife, Rachel.

We thank Earl for his leadership, dedicated service and unparalleled love for his community.


Michele SwannEconomic impact is a key metric for us at Cobb Galleria Centre and has always been an essential part of our strategic goals. The convention center's operations bring visitors to our community, create and sustain jobs, generate direct and indirect spending and increase tax revenue. In fiscal year 2015, our event activity generated a combined economic impact of $142.5 million to Cobb County and the state of Georgia.

Our continued close relationships with Cobb Travel & Tourism and our other hospitality partners strengthen our competitive edge and contribute to our success in attracting major multi-day, overnight conventions. Of course, our successes would not be possible without our loyal clients, dedicated employees and volunteer leadership - the Cobb-Marietta Coliseum & Exhibit Hall Authority.

And speaking of leadership, earlier this month former Chairman, Earl E. Smith, retired after nineteen years of service on the Authority. During Mr. Smith's tenure on the Authority, we acquired Galleria Specialty Shops, expanded Cobb Galleria Centre, created ArtsBridge Foundation, developed Cobb Energy Performing Arts Centre and celebrated the convention center's 20th anniversary. We are sincerely grateful to Mr. Smith for his vision, his tireless leadership and his dedication to our mission.

We are looking forward to a busy February/March tradeshow and gala season here at Cobb Galleria Centre, as we welcome Southeastern Shoe Travelers, SJTA's Atlanta Jewelry Show, the Spring Atlanta Home Show, American Craft Council, Center for Family Resources 20th Annual Red Carpet Gala, SafePath's Hearing Children's Voices Gala and YWCA of Northwest Georgia's 31st Annual Tribute to Women of Achievement.

We look forward to seeing you at one of these upcoming events!

Michele Swann signature
Michele L. Swann
General Manager and CEO


Annual ReportCobb Galleria Centre, Cobb Energy Performing Arts Centre and ArtsBridge Foundation recently released their joint 2015 Annual Report, which celebrates a year of Exceeding Expectations.

Based on an economic impact study performed by an independent consulting firm, the venues created 1,360 jobs in 2015 and generated approximately $143 million in overall economic impact for Cobb County and the State of Georgia. Approximately $7.6 million in sales, income, local option, hotel/motel and liquor by the drink taxes are directly attributable to events held at the Cobb Galleria Centre and Cobb Energy Centre. In 2015, the convention center produced a total of 635 events with attendance of 348,000. The performing arts center hosted a total of 226 events with attendance of 232,000.

ArtsBridge Foundation, the arts education outreach arm of the Cobb Energy Centre, reached 32,683 students and educators in 2015 through field trips, master classes, educational experiences and the Georgia High School Musical Theatre Awards - Shuler Hensley Awards. An impressive 172 schools participated in field trip programs, and 50 high schools were part of the Shulers. ArtsBridge programs impacted students from 32 Georgia counties.


The Cobb-Marietta Coliseum & Exhibit Hall Authority is currently engaged in a study to determine the feasibility of a new hotel adjacent to Cobb Galleria Centre.

The Authority has hired HVS Convention, Sports & Entertainment Services, a world-wide leader in hospitality consulting, to determine the need for and impact of a full-service, 350-400 room hotel.

"This new supply of rooms will change the dynamics of our group business by attracting more high-impact conventions, with convenient lodging options on site," said Walter Kiley, Director of Sales and Marketing for the Authority. "A new, full-service property will allow us to keep pace with competitive cities and strengthen our convention business."

“We believe this is one of the best sites in Cumberland for a larger hotel facility,” said Bob Voyles, Chairman of the Real Estate Committee of the Authority. “Its proximity to the convention center and the future connection to SunTrust Park and The Battery mixed use complex offer an enviable combination of adjacent potential business and customers.”

HVS has performed hundreds of assignments around the world analyzing the feasibility of convention and conference centers, headquarters hotels, arenas, and more.


Johnny Gresham Game Ball

Our own Johnny Gresham was recently presented with the game ball at the Georgia Tech men’s basketball contest on Feb. 10. Gresham, Secretary of the Cobb-Marietta Coliseum & Exhibit Hall Authority, is a graduate of Georgia Tech and was a top rusher for the football team in 1964.


Ballroom Gala

It's gala season! The Cobb Chamber of Commerce just concluded another glamorous Annual Dinner, and we're honored to be chosen by the Alzheimer's Association (Dancing Stars of Atlanta), the  Wellstar Foundation,  The Center for Family Resources,  YWCA of Northwest Georgia,  The Legendary Awards  and Safepath Children's Advocacy Center - among many others - to host their upcoming fundraisers!

Are you planning a fundraiser? More info:


Kyle SmithKyle Smith is no stranger to the Cobb Galleria Centre and the hundreds of events that are held here yearly. As an almost six-year veteran, Smith will tell you that he coordinates quite a few events, but that his responsibility as Event Services Manager now consists of overseeing the department of four event coordinators and four concierges.

After being promoted to the department manager in November 2013 from Event Services Supervisor, Smith attends a lot more operational meetings and focuses a lot of his attention on inventory and budgets.

Originally from Loveland, Colo., Smith earned his Bachelor’s Degree at Wayne State College in northeast Nebraska. His older brother and parents still reside in Loveland, so he likes to visit there in the summer with his 4-year-old daughter, Addison.

Smith has developed a lot of good friendships throughout the years that he doesn’t label as just work friendships. He says his favorite part of the job is the co-workers in his department. “We have worked in this department together for years,” he said. “All of us relate to each other and get along really well. We are all pretty close.”

Smith said that many of his co-workers and the company’s culture of teamwork inspire him to work hard. “I see people on the floor, they’re sweating and moving chairs, so I have to jump in there, and I think, hopefully, people appreciate that.”

He has had a lot of experience dealing with the unexpected at events, including one that was especially memorable: “One of our clients always has a big-name country music artist perform a concert after their dinner,” Smith said. “I found out around lunch time the day of the event that his tour bus had been delayed in Alabama on its way to Atlanta. Hours had gone by, so my production team and clients were getting worried that their talent might not make it in time. At the last minute, the performer showed up, parked on the dock, and walked on stage to perform just in time, no rehearsal or anything!”


When the Cobb Galleria Centre was nothing more than artist renderings and a concrete slab, the Atlanta Apartment Association (AAA) was the very first client to sign a contract to host events at the now 22-year-old convention center.

"This is our favorite story," said Russ Webb, vice president of Atlanta and Georgia Apartment Associations. "We have been a CGC client ever since, and it has been a great partnership."

AAA Trade ShowAAA now hosts most of its major events at the Cobb Galleria Centre. That includes four large dinner meetings (550-1,000 people), two large economic workshops (500 people), several of their larger education classes and their annual trade show, which uses three exhibit halls. These meetings are attended by multifamily industry professionals from across the region, and in some cases from across the country. The trade show is one of the largest apartment industry shows in the U.S.

“While our annual trade show is definitely our biggest event, the November STAR Awards program is one of our favorites,” Webb said. “This gala dinner features an awards program that recognizes the very best in our industry and celebrates our industry achievements, along with highlighting the top companies that participate in our Food-A-Thon providing millions of meals to the hungry in North Georgia.”

Webb said the location and complimentary parking at Cobb Galleria Centre make it a venue of choice for AAA. “There are many reasons we choose CGC, but the primary one is convenience. The location is second to none, and the free parking is a huge benefit to our attendees. It is great to work with a facility that knows us well, and that we know well. That partnership has helped create some magical events.”

The Atlanta Apartment Association is the multifamily housing trade association for the Atlanta Metro area. Founded in 1975, AAA is one of the largest local apartment associations in the country and an affiliate of the Georgia Apartment Association and the National Apartment Association. The Atlanta Apartment Association conducts cutting edge educational and training programs, guides its industry in the legislative arena, and encourages meaningful partnerships with the community. For more information, visit


If you have been to the Cobb Galleria Centre lately, you have noticed the nearby road construction in just about every direction. Numerous projects are underway to make getting to the Cobb Galleria Centre easier, including widening on U.S. Highway 41 (Cobb Parkway), the addition of managed lanes on I-75, and the new “diverging diamond” interchange at I-75 and Windy Hill Road. For more detailed information on these projects, please visit the Cumberland CID website or The CID site also includes information on other development projects currently underway near the Cobb Galleria Centre.


Ten hotels near the Cobb Galleria Centre are renovating or have recently completed renovations. Most notably, the Embassy Suites Atlanta Galleria has just embarked on a major renovation that will encompass a complete redesign of all guest rooms, the atrium, meeting space and the building’s exterior. The hotel also will introduce Hilton’s new food and beverage program, E’terie. The project is expected to be finished by spring. The Embassy Suites is located directly across the street from the Cobb Energy Centre and three blocks from Cobb Galleria Centre.

Hotel Indigo Atlanta - Vinings recently opened on the site of the old Courtyard Vinings after a multi-million dollar renovation. The 160-room boutique property is located at 2857 Paces Ferry Road.

Centre Focus is the official newsletter of Cobb Galleria Centre. Centre Focus is a free service designed to inform our clients, business partners and the community about upcoming events and the latest news from the Centre. Cobb Galleria Centre does not share its e-mail list with any individual or organization.

©2016 Cobb Galleria Centre. All rights reserved.

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Cobb Galleria Centre · 2 Galleria Parkway · Atlanta, GA 30339 · USA