2017-11-13 / Front Page

Initial Hall of Success class inducted during Friday ceremony

Ledger Publisher

Inductees of the inaugural Cherokee County Hall of Success class have more in common than just their accomplishments and successful careers.

They are proud to be from Cherokee County and share that feeling with all they meet.

“I have had the opportunity to travel to a lot of different places and meet a ton of people,” said Jenna Gibson, senior editorial producer for CBS News. “There are two things they all know about me. One, I’m a big Clemson fan and two, I’m from Gaffney. That speaks volumes for this community, the idea that being from a small town can really take you far because you have such a support group.”

Gibson was one of 18 graduates of Cherokee County high schools inducted Friday night in a ceremony at The Capri on Main. Fifteen of them, or their relatives, were on hand to accept.

“Everyone who knows me knows that I am from Gaffney and I am so proud of this great place,” said Jennifer Wise, 2017 S.C. Teacher of the Year. “I thank Cherokee County schools for playing such a great part in the accomplishments evidenced here tonight.”

Not only did inductees give credit to the education they received in Cherokee County, but to the people in their lives who supported them.

“When I think of all the support and love and guidance and encouragement that has been given me by my parents, family and friends, it makes it easy to be able to try to achieve and to do the best that I can,” said William Manning, senior vice-president for global banking at Bank of America. “I hope that in some small way my accomplishments can be an inspiration to others.”

The purpose of the Hall of Success is twofold: 1.) To show that a quality education is attainable in Cherokee County, and; 2.) To inspire current students. It was created by community, education and government leaders concerned about the poor perception of local education.

Sissy Wilkins Brock accepted on behalf of her sister, Judy Rose, athletic director and UNC Charlotte.

“This is a special award because it comes from home,” Brock said. “She will tell you in a heartbeat that she is from Blacksburg and Blacksburg has always supported her. Thank you for her and for Blacksburg.”

Those inducted include:

Alexa Gaffney/Adams: Medical doctor

Andie MacDowell: Actress/model

Andre Stanley: Public health

Charlene Blackwell-Thompson: NASA launch director

Dr. Bobby Moss: Historian

Sen. Harvey Peeler: Politician

Jenna Gibson: News media

Jennifer Wise: Educator

Jim Sanders: Businessman

John M. Hamrick: Businessman

Johnny Dawkins: Screenwriter

Judy rose: Athletic director

Libby Mitchell: Politician/attorney

Louis Sossamon: Newspaper publisher

William Manning: Banker

Neil Chambers: Architect

Zack Mckown: Architect

Sky Foster: Corporate communications

More details about the accomplishments of the inductees will be included in future editions of The Gaffney Ledger and added to the Hall’s website, which is now under construction.

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