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Chamber of Commerce announces 2021 Community Award winners

On Friday afternoon, Jan. 21, 2022, the Adel-Cook County Chamber of Commerce announced the 2021 Community Award winners.
They are Dr. Tom Fausett – Man of the Year; Zoe Myers – Woman of the Year; Justin Shealey – Agri-Business Person of the Year; Colombo NA – Company of the Year; Dr. Courtney Holley – Entrepreneur of the Year;  ANS Signs – Small Business of the Year; and Madison Kinard – Young Professional of the Year.

As a result of COVID-19 precautions, prerecorded video announcements about the Community Award winners were posted on the Chamber’s Facebook page.
Chamber President Heather Green delivered cakes to congratulate the winners on Monday morning, Jan. 24.
The Chamber’s annual awards banquet is set for Feb. 15. However, again due to COVID, the banquet will follow the same format as last year in a smaller setting with only Chamber board members, award recipients and family members, and a handful of other invitees in attendance.

Dr. Tom Fausett, 2021 Man of the Year

(Announcement presented by Chase Daughtrey, 2020 Man of the Year)
I want to thank everyone for the honor of being chosen as the 2020 Man of the Year. It has been a pleasure to serve my community, and I look forward to continuing to do so for many years to come.
Our 2021 recipient is to be commended for his perseverance and leadership throughout Cook County and beyond. Throughout his career, our recipient has encouraged others, mounted initiatives, promoted education, developed resources, and inspired advocacy to serve others.
It is no secret that this gentleman is well loved by this community and puts his heart into helping others at some of their worst moments. He operates a private independent practice in Adel and is on staff at Southwell Medical and Southwell Health and Rehabilitation Center.  He is certified as a Diplomate by the American Board of Family Medicine, and was named the 73rd Georgia Academy of Family Physicians President for 2020-2021.
He has been married to his wife Adrienne for over 25 years and they have two children, Thomas and Camille.
I am proud and honored to announce Dr. Tom Fausett as the 2021 Man of the Year for Cook County.

Zoe Myers, 2021 Woman of the Year

(Presented by Maria Hardman, 2020 Woman of the Year)
It was my honor to be named Woman of the Year for 2020.  There are many well deserving women in Cook County, and I congratulate the outstanding businesses and individuals who are being recognized this year.  What a great community we are privileged to call our home.
This year’s honoree has spent years helping to develop a network of volunteers and groups that reach every sector of this community. Her collaboration efforts reach well beyond the borders of Cook County as she is well known throughout the State as a leader in her field. Not only does this person demonstrate selflessness and passion for this community daily; she also travels the U.S. sharing innovative ideas and encouragement to other groups year-round.

Our honoree has a love for people in need, and she exudes a positive attitude and a willingness to help others, be it great or small.
This year’s honoree collaborates with numerous local organizations like the Cook Senior Center, Boys and Girls Club, Cook County Library, House of Grace, and Candy Cane’s Learning Center, just to name a few. However, she is best known for her work with the Cook County Family Connection, for which she serves as executive director.
She is truly a community leader with influence that will impact families for generations to come.
I am proud and honored to announce our 2021 Woman of the Year: Mrs. Zoe Myers.

Justin Shealey, 2021 Agri-Business Person of the Year

(Presented by Tucker Price, County Extension Coordinator and Agriculture Agent for Cook County)
From peanuts and cotton, to pine tree seedlings and blackberries, Cook County farmers produce a variety of agriculture commodities.
What many don’t realize is the demand on a typical agriculture producer. What other profession places as much emphasis on economics, management, and human resources as it does on entomology, plant pathology, and soil chemistry?  Most people know what the temperature outside is right now; but if you know what the temperature of the soil at 6 inches below the surface is, you might be a farmer. Soil temperature plays a big role in seed germination.
Today anyone can get this information from the weather station behind me. Just go to Georgia and select Sparks, GA.
My name is Tucker Price. I am the University of Georgia Extension Coordinator and Agriculture Agent for Cook County. It’s my privilege to present Cook County’s Agri-Business Person of the Year award.
The farmer to be recognized for this award has a true passion for agriculture. Commodities traditionally produced on this individual’s farm include peanuts and cotton. Other commodities produced include watermelons and pecans. All commodities produced on their land is accomplished through responsible soil and water conservation practices that ensure a sustainable, environmentally friendly agriculture production system.
Spend five minutes with this individual, and you’ll be impressed not only with his knowledge of agriculture production, but also his understanding of the industry as a whole.
He is recognized as a leader in agriculture in the entire state. He serves as a member of the Georgia Cotton Commission’s Commodity Group and the vegetable Commission Commodity Group, and he has been recognized by Georgia Farm Bureau for Excellence in Agriculture. This producer is active in the Alapaha Soil and Water District meetings and has served in leadership roles in recognizing and addressing rural stress among the agriculture community.
The recipient of this year’s award got his influence for agriculture from his grandfather. And just like his grandfather, he never met a stranger and could carry on a conversation with anybody with an enjoyable sense of humor. His grandfather would be very proud to see him win this award today.
The recipient of the 2021 Agri-Business Person of the Year is Justin Shealey.

Colombo NA, Company of the Year

(Presented by Heather Green, President of the Adel-Cook County Chamber of Commerce)
On behalf of the Cook County Economic Development Commission and their Executive Director Miss Lisa Collins, it is my honor to announce the 2021 Company of the Year.
In 2006, when it came to the task of selecting a North American site to expand their parent company’s manufacturing and sales operation, this company looked for a location that was nestled in the heart of America’s peanut country. The company eventually chose Cook County because of its rich tradition of agricultural quality, its location, and its workforce.
Since locating in Cook County, the corporation’s facility has allowed the company to continue their legacy in a market hungry for quality. By producing the finest products and by offering engineering expertise, superior technical service, and active support for their customers, today their customer base spans the entire Southeast, and beyond.
It is my great pleasure to recognize Colombo North America as Cook County’s 2021 Company of the Year. Colombo NA is a branch of Colombo Group, the largest Brazilian manufacturer of harvesters for peanuts, edible dry beans, and components such as PTO drive-shafts and U-Joints.
Colombo NA currently manufactures the 2-Row Double Master III Combine, 4-Row Twin Master Combine, 6-Row Twin Master Peanut Combine, and the CTA 6500 Dump Cart. Colombo machines are the only machines that harvest peanuts with an Axial-Flow system, which allows better results in more humid conditions.
Leandro Santos, Chief Marketing Officer of the parent company, Industrias Columbo, Brazil, states, “Cook County is an outstanding place to do business. They go above and beyond expectations connecting us with the resources and incentives of a large county with the courtesy and pleasantness of a small town. That’s why we ‘Buy Cook, Live Cook, Serve Cook.’ ”
Congratulations, Colombo NA!  We are very happy that you have chosen to call Cook County, GA “home.”

Dr. Courtney Holley, 2021 Entrepreneur of the Year

(Presented by Thomas Williams, 2021 Chairman of the Chamber’s Small Business Development Committee)
Today I have the honor of presenting the Entrepreneur of the Year award.
The Entrepreneur of the Year Award is based on an individual who is responsible for a company’s success and demonstrates the best traits of entrepreneurship, which include the willingness to take risk, and the drive to take their business to the next level.
This year’s honoree is not only a very successful business owner, but also finds time to work a full time “Day Job” while doing so. This person looks for opportunities to get involved with community outreach with different organizations throughout Cook County and beyond.
For years, our recipient has offered a safe place for kids to come and taught them how to express themselves through the art of performance and dance. In 2021, they also purchased a new location in Nashville to provide the same exciting experiences to children in the neighboring community as well. Her strong work ethic and desire to better the lives of children are one of her most enduring characteristics and makes a great role model for the students who pass through her doors each week.
With that hint, you may have already guessed who our award winner is. She is the proud owner of South Georgia Dance Company. She also serves as the Cook County Board of Education’s Human Resources Director and District Psychologist.
She and her husband of 14 years, Matt, have three children – Alenea, Harris, and Patten.
We proudly announce Mrs. Courtney Holley as the 2021 Entrepreneur of the Year.

ANS Signs, 2021 Small Business of the Year

(Presented by John Henry Surrency, owner of Cook County Welding and Machine)
We had the honor of being selected as the 2020 Small Business of the Year. And it is my privilege to announce this year’s winner on behalf of the Chamber of Commerce.
The Small Business of the Year Award honors a member company that has fewer than 25 employees and has been in business in Cook County for more than two years. The nominee demonstrates visible growth and achievements, adheres to their company brand, and makes a positive community impact by investing both through business and community support. They contribute and promote economic growth, stability, and improvement in Cook County and beyond.
The 2021 honoree is a third-generation, family- owned and -operated business that has been serving the Cook County area since moving here in 1977. They built their business’ brand on quality work in their industry and customer satisfaction. Many of their employees have been with the company for more than 15 years, which is a true testament of how the founder’s determination, dedication, and integrity has been passed on.
Although the company has experienced major personal losses in recent years, they have remained steadfast in their mission and continue to be an active partner in the community.
The grandson of founder John Scarboro, Chris Posey currently leads this year’s honoree as its President, as his mother, Lorie Apperson-Moore did. Long-time team member, Ryan Duren, serves as Vice President of Operations.
They take great pride in treating their customers as they would want to be treated while providing a top-quality project at a fair price.
This year’s Small Business of the Year, ANS Signs, Inc.

Madison Kinard, 2021 Young Professional of the Year

(Presented by Candace Horne, 2020 Young Professional of the Year)
It was my honor to be named as the inaugural Young Professional of the Year for 2020. There are many well deserving individuals in Cook County, and I am proud to be a part of a great community.
This award is based on outstanding achievement in the nominee’s chosen field of work as well as their community service activities. Qualifying nominees are 40 years of age or younger and demonstrate success and vision.
This emerging business leader also illustrates a positive impact on their workplace and community; exhibits creativity and initiative all while making a meaningful imprint on the future of their organization and the local business community.
This year’s honoree is not from Cook County, but was given the opportunity to purchase an existing business and became its owner in 2019. Since then, they have made numerous improvements that have made the popular retail establishment even more of a success. With the recent focus of many families shifting to spending more quality time together in the great outdoors, this young professional was able to meet the ever-increasing demand for outdoor equipment and all things related.  Since purchasing the business, this person has become a huge supporter of several local organizations and proven to be totally committed to Cook County and our growth.
He and his wife of four years, Chelsey, have two children, Finley, 19 months, and Grace, 1 month.
We proudly name Mr. Madison Kinard, owner of Adel Outfitters, as the 2021 Young Professional of the Year.

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