Impact Group celebrates 15th year

LAWRENCEVILLE - Chris Goekel and Marina Peed have made impacts in the Gwinnett community in the areas of homelessness and home ownership.

Goekel was honored with the first-ever Impact Award, presented by the Impact Group on Thursday night at a celebration for the organization's 15th anniversary. The Duluth resident serves as chairman of the organization's Board of Directors.

"(Goekel is) an advocate for transitional housing, people that are in need of housing," said Tom Merkel, president of the Impact Group. "He's very community-oriented."

Peed, also a Duluth resident, was recognized Thursday night for her commitment to the Impact Group and its mission to assist homeless families and provide education for home buyers. She is the former president of the organization and has been with the Impact Group since its conception.

"She's very, very committed with homeless issues and foreclosure and transitional housing," Merkel said.

The Impact Group is a nonprofit community development corporation based in Gwinnett County that offers housing services and provides education programs.