ELLIJAY, Ga. – The Gilmer County Charter School System’s chapter of the National FFA Organization (formerly known as the Georgia Future Farmer’s Association) held their banquet honoring those award winners for the year’s work.
The banquet was also visited by Georgia Speaker of the House David Ralston who stopped by offering his congratulations to those being honored. Ralston commented on the banquet saying, “When I go to FFA groups, I know among some of the finest of our young people. Young people that are learning great work ethic, learning to prepare for leadership roles in the world, and will assume leadership roles in the world. I want to commend you for all your hard work and for the great job you do. Agriculture, not only here in Gilmer county but in the state, has a great future.”
Ralston went on to note the efforts the state has put into getting the second headquarters of Amazon. He told those present that even with Amazon, agriculture would maintain its position as the number one part of our economy in Georgia.
Continuing the banquet, attendees were treated to a dinner served by FFA members before the honorees were brought on stage. The winners noted in the banquet received their awards in the Career Development Events area and are listed below the slideshow.
Gilmer High FFA (Eighth in Area) Kaytlin Beavers, Abigail Blackwell, Hunter Bowyer, Sam Dillard.
Gilmer High FFA (First in Area; 10th in State) Thomas Chastain.
Thomas received a $500 scholarship from the Georgia EMC for placing first in the Area I competition.
Gilmer High FFA (First in Area; Eighth in State) Thomas Chastain, Eli Cochran, Bryson Mulkey (high individual), Dylan Parker.
Agricultural Technology and Equipment ID
Gilmer High FFA JR (Sixth in Area) Ari Price, Avery Marshall, William McVey, Dilian Ojala.
Clear Creek Middle FFA (Fifth in Area) Jacob Bertolini, Abby Bauer, Cole Parks, Sawyer Wishon.
Gilmer High FFA (First in Area) Mary Lee Callihan, Mallory Kiser, Carter Hice, Nathan Cain (high individual).
Conduct of Chapter Meeting
Gilmer High FFA JR (Third in Area) Alyssa Ashurst, Gavin Berger, Rose Chadwick, Ally Elrod, Sarah Ingle, Lauren Smith, Emma Thurman.
Clear Creek FFA (Second in Area) Octavia Bushey, Macie Wilkes, Tori Reed, Abby Baurer, Natalie Johnson, Morgan Griggs, Mallory Lane.
Gilmer High FFA (First in Sub-Area; Third in Area) Sara Ingle.
Gilmer High FFA JR: (First in Area; Second in State) Rose Chadwick, Coleman James, Arianna Price, Lauren Smith.
Clear Creek Middle FFA (Third in Area; 10th in State) Annalysa Brown, Morgan Griggs, Torri Reed, Octavia Bushey.
Gilmer High FFA SR: (First in Area; Sixth in State) Mary Keener, Joe Leonnig, Shelby Nealey, Elizabeth Stillwell.
Environmental Natural Resources
Gilmer High FFA JR (Second in Area, Eighth in State) Alyssa Ashurst, Issac Bradshaw, Ally Elrod, Heath Stover.
Gilmer High FFA SR (Fourth in Area) Hunter Bowyer, Mary Keener, Blake Ledford, Joseph Leonning.
Extemporaneous Public Speaking
Gilmer High FFA (Fourth in Sub-Area) Stephanie Bailey.
Farm Business Management
Gilmer High FFA (First in Area; Third in state) Bryce Bowen, Grace Henderson, Matt Long, Katie Marick.
Gilmer High FFA JR (Fifth in Area) Andrea Byers, Olivia Lykins, Griselda Perez, Emma Thurman.
Clear Creek Middle FFA (Third in Area) Abby Bauer, Andrew Mooney, Emma Reece, Joshua Taffin.
Gilmer High FFA SR (Fifth in Area) Jalynn Ledford, Abriana Mccollum, Allison Ross, Claire Stanley.
Gilmer High FFA JR (Third in Area) Colby Barnes, Rose Chadwick, Chandler Clayton, Ally Elrod, Isaiah Hopper, Sara Ingle, Clayton Ott, Heath Stover, Emma Thurman.
Clear Creek Middle FFA (Fifth in Area) Samuel Mclaughin, Logan Chadwick, Jacob Jenkins, Hanna Rutledge, Kingston Collier, Sawyer Wishon, Andrew Mooney, Trace Duncan.
Gilmer High FFA SR (Sixth in Area) Brentney Clemmons, Alex Edens, Blake Ledford, Grant Ledford, Joe Leonnig, Nate Mooney, Mason Penland, Elizabeth Stillwell, Caleb Waddell.
Gilmer High FFA JR(First in Area; Fifth in State) Rose Chadwick, Ally Elrod, Alyssa Ashurst, Sara Ingle.
Clear Creek Middle FFA (Fifth in Area) Abby Bauer, Jacob Bertolini, Sawyer Wishon, Imogen Reeves.
Gilmer High FFA SR (Fourth in Area ) Sadie Bryan, Carter Ott, Bryson Smith, Caleb Waddell.
Clear Creek Middle FFA (11th in Area) Jacob Bertolini.
Gilmer High FFA JR (11th in Area) Rose Chadwick, Clayton Chandler, Sean Lewis, Lauren Smith.
Clear Creek Middle FFA (Fourth in Area) Sarrah Mclemore, Jacob Jenkins, Jacob Bertolini, Dacey Motes.
Gilmer High FFA SR (Fifth in Area) Eli Cochran, Colin Reece, Taylor Sellers, Bryson Smith.
Gilmer High FFA (Second in Area; Fifth in State) Samantha Dillard, Mary Keener, Jaylynn Ledford.
Gilmer High FFA JR (Fifth in Area) Isaiah Hopper, Coleman James, Clay Ott.
Gilmer High FFA SR (Second in Area; Sixth in State) Madison Jenkins, Jacob Jones, Billie Marie Sullens.
Gilmer High FFA SR (First in Area; Fourth in State) Stephanie Bailey, Brentney Clemmons, Summer Davis, Stephen Madalo.
Clear Creek Middle FFA (Fourth in Area) Andrew Mooney, Daniela Montes, Jasmine Rafael, Hannah Rutledge.
Gilmer High FFA (First in Area and STATE WINNER) Bryce Bowen, Grace Henderson, Madison Jenkins, Matt Long, Katie Marick, Bryson Smith.
They will represent the state of Georgia at the National FFA Convention this October in Indianapolis, Indiana.
Gilmer High FFA JR (14th in Area) Colby Barnes, Clayton Chandler, Isiah Hopper, Jacob Nelson.
Clear Creek Middle FFA JR(Fifth in Area) Laney Hensley, Emma Reece, Cole Parks, Samuel Mclaughin.
Gilmer High FFA SR (Third in Area) Alex Edens, Jacob Jones, Samuel Parks, Billiemarie Sullens.
Prepared Public Speaking
Gilmer High FFA JR (Fourth in Sub-Area) Ari Price.
Gilmer High FFA SR (Third in Sub-Area) Elizabeth Chesser.
Gilmer High FFA JR (Second in Area; Eighth in State) Issac Bradshaw, Clay Ott, Heath Stover.
Clear Creek Middle FFA (Seventh in Area) Sawyer Wishon, Lilly Penland, Larz Fowler, Jacob Jenkins.
Gilmer High FFA SR(Third in Area) Grant Ledford, Nathan Mooney, Mason Penland.
Also honored at the banquet were this year’s senior class students who were invited to say a few words and what stood as their final meeting of the Gilmer FFA this year. Individually noted, each senior’s plans for post high school follows:
Tyler Cantrell will be attending Nashville Auto Diesel College after he graduates from Gilmer High School. He will be studying to become a diesel mechanic;
Shelby Nealey will be attending the University of North Georgia after she graduates from Gilmer High School. She will be studying to become a registered nurse;
Sara May will be attending the University of North Georgia after she graduates from Gilmer High School. She will be majoring in business administration.
Brentney Clemmons will be attending Young Harris College after she graduates from Gilmer High School. She will be majoring in environmental science.
Grant Ledford will be attending Truett McConnell University after he graduates from Gilmer High School. He is undecided at this time.
Stephanie Bailey will be attending Kennesaw State University after she graduates from Gilmer High School. She will be majoring in international business.
Samuel Parks will be attending the University of North Georgia after he graduates from Gilmer High School. He will be majoring in avian science.
Alex Edens will be attending the University of North Georgia after she graduates from Gilmer High School. She will be majoring in agribusiness.
Joe Leonning will be going to the Naval Academy after he graduates from Gilmer High School. He will be studying to become an aircraft mechanic.
Megan Bird will be attending Abraham Baldwin Agricultural College after she graduates from Gilmer High School. She will be majoring in agricultural education.
Elizabeth Stillwell will be attending Abraham Baldwin Agricultural College after she graduates from Gilmer High School. She will be majoring in agricultural education.
Rachel Waddell will be attending Young Harris College after she graduates from Gilmer High School. She will be majoring in early childhood education.
Bryce Bowen will be attending the University of Georgia after he graduates from Gilmer High School. He will be majoring in pre-med.
Katie Marick will be attending Reinhardt University after she graduates from Gilmer High School. She will be majoring in math education.
Grace Henderson will be attending Oglethorpe University after she graduates from Gilmer High School. She will be majoring in biology/pre-med.
EAST, ELLIJAY- Gilmer County FFA (Future Farmers of America) hosted the 36 annual livestock show in the new Agricultural Complex.
On September 29 and 30, the Gilmer FFA Alumni and Young Farmers hosted a livestock show that included a pig show on Friday evening, and a dairy and beef heifer show and market goat show on Saturday.
We talked with Young Farmer teacher Mike Bushey about he felt the show went, he said “I am very pleased with how the show went. We have a lot of support from our community, the students present and past and their parents. Without them this wouldn’t be possible.” He also stated, “We are planning to have two more livestock shows in January and would like to invite everyone out to see the hard work these students put into their projects.”
With each type of animal, kids are judged in a showmanship class, which is how well the animal performs with its showman.
In goat showmanship the exhibitor leads the goat around the ring and places there front and back legs to where it looks like the goat is standing in a rectangle.
Cattle are also led around the ring with front legs shoulder width apart but the back legs are set with one farther up than the other.
In weight class beef cattle, market hogs and goats are judged on how they would look as a dressed out carcass. The judge looks for how much meat they would get from each animal and how much muscle the animal has.
Pigs used for breeding ,breeding gilts, are judged on trimness, large body capacity, and superior mammary systems. Dairy heifers are judged on how feminine they are, how their frame is put together, how well they will be able to reproduce, and produce milk.
These kids will be traveling to the Georgia National Fair in Perry, Ga over the next two weeks to compete against exhibitors from all over the state.
The Gilmer County Board of Education’s Monday, December 12, Meeting was majority overtaken with recognition for students in our Schools.
First, the Board recognized their High School Cheerleaders, two squads were represented at the meeting including the Sideline Squad, performing the cheers for Basketball and Football Games and encouraging School Spirit weekly in the halls of the High School.
The second squad recognized was the Competition Squad who practice daily to attend and compete against other squads around our region. They have achieved Region Runner Up this year as were able to move on to attend Stat Sectionals as well.
Many recognized our school systems Parliamentary Team at the meeting as well as they provided a presentation to the Board several months ago. That presentation was practice before the team moved on to compete against 43 other teams. Our Parliamentary Team not only achieved 1st in the State, but also moved on to compete in Nationals in Indiana recently, achieving 6th overall. However, the accolades do not stop as they also achieved the second highest test scores in Nationals and hosted the Outstanding Chairperson in the Nation, .
Still more achievements in our schools were presented as Gilmer’s Technology Student Association (TSA) appeared with four members who each gave speeches on the meaning of TSA in their High School careers as well as the influence of TSA’s teacher representative, Mr. Wyrick. With 130 chapters attending the Technology Day Competition that our students attended, each of the four students present brought home high honors as they received 2nd place in both competitions for a Mouse Trap powered Car and a CO2 Powered Car, 7th place for bridge construction, 3rd place for Graphic Design Competition in Pen Design, and 6th place for a TSA t-shirt design.
Their meeting wasn’t all awards and honors, however, as the Board also continued closing in on the end of their process to review ever Board Policy on its books. Though Superintendent Dr. Shanna Wilkes lauded this as an achievement for the Board, she also alluded to the possibility of cycling back around and going through the policies again, following the same two-year plan for review. Stating there is always something needing updating and attention, Dr. Wilkes alluded that this process could become a consistently repeated process to constantly make sure the Board’s policies are updated.
This months policies under review are First Readings for Policy BBFB Governance Teams, Policy BCBI-R(1) Public Participation in Board Meetings. Policy EE Food Services Management, Policy EEE Wellness Program, Policy GBC Professional Personnel Recruitment, Policy IBB Charter Schools, Policy JCDAE Weapons, and Policy JGFGB Concussion Management, as well as Second Readings for Policy BCBI Public Participation in Board Meetings, Policy GAL Salary Deductions (Rescind), Policy GANA Infectious Diseases, Policy GBKA Professional Personnel Lay-Off, and Policy JGCC Infectious Diseases (Rescind).-
Financially, Dr. Wilkes reported items to the Board including some ESPLOST purchase she stated were not required for the Purchasing Policy(therefore not needing a vote on Thursday). However, she wanted the Board aware of the purchases for the Agriculture Education center. The other purchase included a fiscal service purchase for Softdocs for $12,330.
With a turn of the shovels, the Gilmer County Board of Education has officially begun construction on the approved Agricultural Facilities located at Clear Creek Middle School. Offering words of thanks to the citizens for their support and to Charles Black Construction for their help with the project, Dr. Shanna Wilkes opened the ceremony to break ground after nine months of work to prepare, design, draw, and plan the Agricultural facility that will include a show ring, an animal barn, a covered prep area, and connected building to house Gilmer’s very popular cannery.
The 1st female from Gilmer County has become an FFA State Officer.
Her name is Sadie Lackey. She is currently a senior at Gilmer County High School, soon to be freshman at ABAC in the fall. At the GA FFA state convention last week, on 4/29, they chose 4 people from the each of the 3 regions. After only a few hours of “campaigning”, they announced on 4/30, Saturday morning, who the 8 officers will be for the 2016-2017 year. She is the 1st female from Gilmer County to become a GA FFA state officer.
Gilmer’s Parlipro team also got 1st place in the state competition as well!!! They will go to nationals in October.