Randae Davis earned a Bachelor’s of Science in Criminology from Florida State University. He joined the Community Foundation of South Georgia in 2008. Prior to joining the Community Foundation, Davis had a rewarding career serv- ing the citizens of South Georgia as a law enforcement officer and as a Senior Claims Representative with Progressive Insurance. He is married to Joy and they have two children, ages 9 and 6.
He is responsible for managing the relationships with the donor base, fund rep- resentatives and nonprofit organizations. He oversees development and completes due diligence for all grant advisements and handles the marketing and communications for the foundation. Randae is a 2012 Hull Fellows graduate and alumni of the 2013 class of the Institute of Georgia’s Environmental Leadership.
Our meeting location, Rainwater Conference Center is the home of the Tourism Authority. If you aren’t familiar with all the features of this great facility be sure to ask Tim for a tour. But tourism is more than just the conference center, so come and hear what Tim has to say.
At our club assembly, we honor and commemorate a special member of the Valdosta Rotary Club, Dr. Robert L. Stump, Jr. He is celebrating his 100th birthday as well as
68 dedicated and faithful years as a Valdosta Rotarian. We are here to celebrate with him!
He received a degree in medicine from Emory University in 1940 and practiced as a medical physician for the local Valdosta community as well as in St. Louis, Indiana, and Tennessee as well. Dr. Stump was inducted as a member of the Valdosta Rotary Club in 1946 in legacy of his father, Robert Stump, Senior, and holds the po- sition as the longest sustained Valdosta Rotarian to-date.
Cassandra Sherrill is the Senior Manager for the Path2College 529 Plan and has been with the plan since 2012. The Path2College 529 Plan administers a qualified tuition plan that provides a program of tax advantaged investment options to facilitate saving for college or other higher education expenses. The program was launched in April 2002 and has over $1.7 billion assets under management and over 127,000 accounts.
As a first generation college student, Cassandra’s passion in life is education and youth development. Her life goal is to help as many young people obtain a higher education and provide encouragement to reach their dreams.
Cassandra previously served as Marketing Assistant for the Boys & Girls Clubs of Metro Atlanta (BGCMA) where she managed the marketing campaigns, initiatives and collateral for all 25 Clubs. It was here where her passion for youth development and education began to blossom and grow into what it is today.
Cassandra holds a BA in Public Relations from Francis Marion University in Florence, SC and a Master’s of Science in Public Relation Theory from Montana State University-Billings. She and her husband Shelton live in Atlanta with one daughter Marlee.
Last week Jessica Bolesta, founder of Raisin’ Cane, shared with us the significant role family farms play in Georgia. She stressed the importance of purchasing American produce and of supporting local farmers.
When she asked how many of our members have been to a farm, most acknowledged that they have visited farms and have family members who own farms, but few of us have had the experience of working on one and fewer still have helped on a family farm.
As a fifth-generation member of the local family-owned farm enterprise, she talked about how being actively involved in farming from the time she was a child shaped her love of working the land. Her family “planted the seeds” in their children that grew their farm and produce market into a successful agri-tourism business. Today Raisin’ Cane visitors can experience agriculture by touring a real working farm and learning how food is grown. Everyone in the family can have fun in the corn maze and enjoy other interactive attractions. They can purchase home-grown goods, dine on fresh-from-the-farm home-cooked meals from Kim’s Kitchen, and enjoy tasty treats from the bakery. It is a popular destination for children on field trips as well as tourists. For more information visit www.raisincanevaldosta.com.
Welcome our speakers, Ron & Tammy Borders! Tammy will be discussing the housing market for 2014 and what we are expecting in 2015 for Valdosta, as well as a few national predictions.
Also, please be on the lookout to welcome our newest members, Chief Brian Childress, Bikram Mohanty, and Alice Popielarz. Invite them to sit with you and get to know other Rotarians committed to Service above Self.
Continuing with the education theme, our own Rotary member Brad Lawson, will bring us an overview and update on Dasher’s Georgia Christian School. Celebrating its centennial this year, Brad is currently the President and he regularly brings InterAct students from the school to our meetings.
Brad grew up in the Chattanooga, TN area. He received a BA in Social Science from Harding University (’95) and moved to Valdosta to teach middle/high school at Georgia Christian School (GCS). In 2000, he joined the US Army and was stationed in the Washington, D.C. area (The Old Guard). After four years, he returned to Valdosta to teach at Echols County until 2008. Since 2008, he has been the lead administrator at GCS and currently holds the title of President.
Brad earned his Master’s in Education in ’03 (UMUC), his Educational Specialist in Leadership in ’06 (VSU) and is currently finishing work on his Ed.D. in Leadership (VSU). He is married to Patience McMullen Lawson and they have three boys, Reagan, Rowan, and Ryder.
The mission of Scintilla Charter Academy is to increase student achievement and develop social responsibility through educational innovations in a safe community of involved families and educators.
Julie Hiers, president of Scintilla Charter Academy, will give a presentation about the recently approved charter school in Valdosta.
Julie Hiers, an “air force brat” who moved to Valdosta her Junior year of high school, considers this town her home. She graduated from Valdosta High School, received a ECE undergrad and Masters in Interrelated Special Education from VSU, and a Specialist degree in Leadership from Nova Southern University. She worked for 17 years at SL Mason as a Para educator, 2nd and 3rd grade teacher, and academic coach. She then was an Assistant Principal at J.L Lomax for 2 years and at Sallas Mahone for 4 years. Hiers is married to David Hiers, and they are members of the First United Methodist Church. She is very involved in the community including: Leadership Lowndes, VSU FCA Board Member, Georgia Association of teacher Educators (Gate), and Troop leader for American Heritage Girls.
Rotary launched its PolioPlus program, the first initiative to tackle global polio eradication, in 1985. Since then, Rotary and its partners have helped reduce the number of annual cases from 350,000 to fewer than 250 and remain committed until every child is safe from the disease. Rotary has contributed more than US$1.2 billion and countless volunteer hours to protect more than 2 billion children in 122 countries. In addition, Rotary’s advocacy efforts have played a role in decisions by donor governments to contribute over $9 billion to the effort.
More than one million Rotary members have donated their time and personal resources to end polio. Every year, hundreds of Rotary members work side-by- side with health workers to vaccinate children in polio-affected countries. Rotarians work with partners like UNICEF to prepare and distribute mass communication tools to share the message with those isolated by conflict, geography, or poverty. Rotary members also recruit fellow volunteers, assist with transporting the vaccine, and provide other logistical support.
Working together, Rotarians world wide are making a difference.
A native of Georgia, Arthur Blake Pearce received his Master of Arts degree from Ball State University and his Master of Fine Arts degree from Southern Illinois University at Carbondale. He served as the Head of the VSU Department ofArt for thirteen years and has been the Dean of the VSU College of the Arts since 2013.
Pearce is a member of Alpha Chi and Phi Kappa Phi Honors Societies. He is a member of the Southern Graphics Council, the American Print Alliance, the South Eastern College Art Conference, the College Art Association, the National Council of Arts Administrators, and the International Council of Fine Arts Deans. His teaching area has been in the printmaking studio. His most recent artworks works have been paintings, prints, and drawings.
Join us at the Rainwater Conference Center at noon to hear what is happening in the Arts at VSU.