There are so many people in our community who are deserving to be recognized for their outstanding contributions both within Cherokee County and beyond. While we can think of many people that would be a perfect fit for the Alumni of the Year award, we want to hear from you. We want you to nominate someone you think is deserving of this honor! After we evaluate the nominations, we will recognize the selected alumna and alumnus at this year's Celebration of Education Gala!

Executive Director Lisa-Marie Haygood stated, "CCEF was founded by community business leaders, and advocates in 2012 with the commitment to ensure excellence in our public schools throughout the county regardless of the economic circumstances we experience. At that time, teachers were being furloughed, and the budget strings were very tight in the face of austerity budget cuts at the state level and a dismal economic forecast for several years to come. Thankfully, the founders of this charity recognized the importance of quality schools to attract additional businesses, families, and growth for our county. We exist to promote quality teaching, learning, leadership development, and to celebrate the achievements of our students, faculty, and staff."

This is why we set out to host black-tie events such as the Celebration of Education Gala and other fundraisers – to support the students and faculty of the Cherokee County School District. Just one part of this event is the presentation of the Alumni of the Year award. Last year, we honored Dr. Angela Falany and Mr. Gene Hobgood. 

Dr. Angela Falany and Mr. Gene Hobgood  

Dr. Falany graduated from Cherokee High School, Reinhardt College, Wesleyan College, and Mercer University's School of Medicine. She now practices with her husband, Dr. Mike Hulse, at North Georgia OB/GYN Specialists. Dr. Falany is a wife and mother and is heavily involved at Canton First United Methodist Church. With her extensive involvement in the medical community and passion for helping women through their pregnancies and with their overall health, Dr. Falany was an obvious choice for the Alumni of the Year award.

The other winner of the award was Mr. Gene Hobgood. Mr. Hobgood attended Canton Grammar School, Cherokee High School, Reinhardt College, and West Georgia College. Having grown up in Canton, he has always had a passion for leading and developing his community. He served as everything from Mayor to little league baseball coach to PTA president. We were proud to present Mr. Hobgood with this reward in recognition of his exceptional contributions within Cherokee County.

"Mayor Hobgood and Dr. Falany have both been active and engaged members of this community. They support our continued school district excellence, and embody the strong values and connectivity we hope that our schools will continue to produce for many years to come. We are proud of their accomplishments and were thankful for the chance to recognize their many contributions."

This year's Celebration of Education Gala is expected to be even more successful than last year's and we're so excited to receive your nominations for Alumni of the Year. 

Do you know an alumna and an alumnus of the Cherokee County School District who is deserving of the Alumni of the Year award? The only requirements are that your nominee is a graduate of 10 years or more and that he or she has served our community or the greater good. Click here to fill out the nomination form!