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Senior Center celebrates honor, legacy
Senior Center
Pictured, from left, Sheriff Ezell Brown, Kathleen Irwin and Abigail Morgan Coggin, of the Arts Association in Newton County, and twins Alice Griffith Walker and Becky Griffith Ramsey.

COVINGTON, Ga. - The fourth annual Honor and Legacy Awards Banquet held at the Senior Center June 22 proved a delightful evening for all who attended. This event honors local citizens who advocate for seniors while working to improve the community for everyone. The rousing crowd enjoyed festive music, a delicious dinner by Boyd’s Catering, and the much-anticipated presentation of the awards. 

Energizing the crowd with their dynamic personalities, Shakila Henderson-Baker and Almond Turner were the Mistress and Master of Ceremony. For the fourth year in a row, Raymond Hammonds provided lively entertainment as well as tribute songs for the award recipients. Special pictures were provided by Lazarusman Photography and Videos.

Hawnethia Williams was honored with the T.K. Adams and Louise B. Adams Art and Education Award.  Due to out-of-town business, Williams was unable to attend but sent her well wishes to fellow honorees. Williams is a retired educator of 30-plus years and is a City of Covington councilwoman. She continues to tirelessly promote the importance of education at all ages.

Ezell Brown received the Josephine B. Brown Civic Award for his work as a peace officer. Ezell Brown is the Sheriff of Newton County and has worked in law enforcement for more than 45 years. During his leadership, the Newton County Sheriff’s Office obtained the status of Triple Crown Accreditation which only five of Georgia’s 159 counties have achieved. 

The Dr. William L. and Virginia C. Dobbs Visionary Business Award was presented to the Arts Association in Newton County. For 30 years and counting, this 501(c)(3) nonprofit and employer has continued to enhance the quality of life for local people and businesses through concerts, performances, camps, programs, Covington Regional Ballet School, and more. Arts Association staff members Abigail Morgan Coggin and Kathleen Irwin accepted the award. 

The Beacon of Light Religious Award was bestowed to twin sisters Alice Griffith Walker and Becky Griffith Ramsey. Walker and Ramsey are nationally-esteemed organists and have formed church choirs specifically for seniors, namely the Ambassador Choir at the First Presbyterian Church and the Singing Saints Choir at the First United Methodist Church.  Open to any and all seniors, both choirs bring people together and embody the teachings of Jesus Christ. 

The Director’s Award was presented to outstanding Senior Center employees. Recipients were Lynda Middlebrooks, Devin Lester, Annie Cooper, Linda Rogers, Linda Powell-Goddard, Nancy Norrington, Janis Norrington, Suzette Martin, Ronald Stanley, David Stanley, Timothy Goolsby, and Kathy Scott. Teresa Williams received special recognition in appreciation of her exceptional service as Assistant Director.

Perhaps the best moment of the evening came when members of the Senior Center’s Board of Directors made the proud announcement that Executive Director Freda Reed has been named Top Senior Center Director of the Year for the entire state of Georgia! Newton County has both the best Senior Center and best director in Georgia.