An appreciation luncheon was held at the Learning Center to honor Catoosa Citizens for Literacy supporters, volunteers, and staff.

Annaliza Thomas, executive director for the state of Georgia Certified Literate Community program, spoke and expressed gratitude for the support given locally. Thomas explained how the support received locally reaches beyond Catoosa County and touches lives throughout the state.

Evelyn Cronnon, past GED student and recipient, expressed her gratitude. Cronnon recently received her degree from Georgia Northwestern Technical College after attending GED classes briefly at the Learning Center. Cronnon was recently accepted to Kennesaw State University. Catoosa Citizens for Literacy Executive Director, Shirley Smith surprised Cronnon by presenting her with a $500 scholarship.

Two well-deserving GED students, Jack Atwood and Lashanda Guffey, were named 2017 GED Students of the Year and awarded $500 scholarships.

Atwood was presented the Roger & Kay Bowman Scholarship for Adult Education. Phil Ledbetter, CCL chairman, read a heartfelt essay written by Atwood, who is currently enrolled at GNTC in the welding and joining technology program.

Guffey was presented the Karen and David Austin Scholarship for Adult Education.

Karen Austin was a long-time employee in the childcare program at the Learning Center. She had a desire for helping children. Her husband David, also volunteered in the basic computer classes and helped out whenever needed. They both battled illnesses and recently departed this life within days of each other. They were passionate about the Learning Center and Catoosa Citizens for Literacy. It was only fitting to name a scholarship in their memory.

Guffey was the perfect recipient for the scholarship. Her dream is to work with children.

For more information on the programs offered by Catoosa Citizens for Literacy, call 706-965-8275.