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Celebration of Education Gala Benefiting CCSD

The Cherokee County Educational Foundation will expand its efforts to raise awareness and funds for the Cherokee County School District with the presentation of its inaugural “Celebration of Education” Gala on Saturday, March 14, 2015.

The event sold out quickly and tickets are no longer available.

The black-tie optional event at the Northside Hospital-Cherokee Conference Center in Canton begins with a cocktail hour and silent auction at 6:30 p.m. and dinner, awards and entertainment at 7:30 p.m.

The event’s presenting sponsor is Northside Hospital-Cherokee.

“The Foundation Board is so pleased to host this inaugural Gala that will both celebrate and benefit all of the important work being done every day by the School District to provide a quality education to each of Cherokee County’s children,” Board President William “Billy” G. Hasty Jr. said.  “Our students, teachers and schools consistently rank among the best in our country, and our alumni have found great success on many different paths… these accomplishments would not be possible without our community’s support, which we hope to have for this special evening.”

Sponsorship opportunities ranging from $5,000 to $500 are available.  Other major sponsors already committed to the event include Bryant’s Quality Painting at the Valedictorian Level and Aramark Management Services and Credit Union of Georgia at the Salutatorian Level.

The entertainment will be “CCSD’s Got Talent,” a student talent show featuring the best act each from the School District’s six high schools in competition for a $1,000 grand prize and $500 runner-up prize.

Superintendent of Schools Dr. Frank R. Petruzielo is the event’s Honorary Chair, and there will be special recognitions of outstanding alumni and educators as part of the evening’s festivities.

The Gala will launch a new, major award to be presented annually by the Foundation: the Alumni of the Year Award, which will honor at least one alumnus and one alumna of the School District each year for outstanding professional and civic contributions.

The inaugural Alumni of the Year Award recipients, who were unanimously selected by the Foundation Board, are Judge Marion T. Pope Jr., who served as Chief Judge of the Georgia Court of Appeals, Blue Ridge Judicial Circuit Superior Court Judge and as a member of the House of Representatives among many other accomplishments; and Janice Prather, a lifetime educator whose career included serving as an Assistant Superintendent and Principal for the School District among other roles and is the immediate past president of the Retired Educators Association.

For the 2016 and subsequent Alumni of the Year Award presentations, the Foundation Board will accept nominations from the community… similar to the prestigious “First Citizen of Cherokee County” Award presented by the Cherokee County Chamber of Commerce.

The evening will include special recognitions of educators and students at every turn… from the cocktail hour music provided by Teasley Middle School students to the master of ceremonies Creekland Middle School teacher John Carter and from the recognitions of honorees like the School District’s Teacher of the Year Joy Silk of Ball Ground Elementary School STEM Academy to the centerpieces created by Cherokee High School students.

Amanda Arnold, Vice President for Credit Union of Georgia, and Debbie Rabjohn, River Ridge High School PTSA President, are the Foundation’s Gala Committee Co-Chairs, and are joined by Foundation Fundraising Chair Kevin Williams of Chick-fil-A of Canton, also a Gala sponsor, in organizing the event.

“Our vision for the Gala is a wonderful evening of celebrations, entertainment… and a surprise or two,” Mrs. Arnold said, noting guests will enjoy hors d’oeuvres and the option of visiting a cash bar during the cocktail hour reception, followed by dinner, dessert and the program, with time for socializing and dancing before the night’s end.

The Foundation (CCEF) is a nonprofit, charitable organization with a mission of supporting students and staff of the School District by promoting teaching and learning and celebrating achievements.  The Foundation seeks funding and resources to enrich schools in areas not fully funded in the regular school program.

Since its establishment in 2012, CCEF has awarded more than $30,000 in grants to students, teachers and schools. Another $15,000 will be awarded in February 2015 to teachers and schools through IMPACT Education Grants for “bright ideas” to improve teaching and learning.

The “Celebration of Education” Gala expands opportunities for local businesses and the community at large to show its support for students, teachers and schools.

All money raised by CCEF through the Gala and its other fundraisers is returned to the School District and its students, teachers and schools through donations, grant opportunities and other support.

For more information about the Foundation, please see the website at or find us on Facebook at
$15,000 total through IMPACT Grants
Special Projects Grants

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