Submitted By Danielle Pleasant
Tennesseans are known for their volunteer spirit; in Johnson County, helping friends and neighbors is a way of life. The Governor’s Volunteer Stars Award program through Volunteer Tennessee began in 2008 as a way to recognize the outstanding volunteers that make a difference in each of Tennessee’s ninety-five counties. This year’s Johnson County recipients truly embody the volunteer spirit through their service to both individuals and our community.
Evelyn Cook is this year’s adult award recipient has served nearly 30 years helping Johnson County to grow and prospers. Her passion for the arts has revived the community theater expanded tourism through the development of The Long Journey Home and Heritage Square.
These projects have led to the development and growth of the Johnson County Young Artists, Junior Appalachian Musicians, and the Johnson County Arts Center, which showcases local artists and provides an environment for young artists to explore and thrive.
Cristy Dunn, who nominated Evelyn for the award, said, “Evelyn serves anywhere she sees a need and is first to support anyone she sees working to make our community stronger. She has a unique ability to help people find the very best part of themselves and inspire those around her to dream big and work to make those dreams a reality. Evelyn is wholeheartedly committed to the mission of the Center for the Arts and works to address our community’s need to become more connected and resilient through the arts.”
Johnson County is home to an abundance of youth who are engaged and serve our community as well. The passion for helping others is a value that is prevalent in homes, schools, clubs, and churches throughout our communities. Volunteering and helping others started early in life for Stacy Greer, this year’s youth award recipient. Stacy is a member of several Johnson County High School clubs and the football and baseball teams and is also very active in his church.
Priscilla Davis, who nominated Stacy for the award, says, “Stacy is the precise depiction of true sportsmanship, as he conducts himself on and off the field with fairness, self-control, courage, and persistence. Stacy is always genuine and treats people with the utmost respect and equality.” In addition to academics and athletics, Stacy supports and assists local senior citizens with lawn care and home projects for those that are disabled. As a First Christian Church member, Stacy serves in worship services and youth group and assists with their food pantry, service projects, and building maintenance.
Evelyn and Stacy will be honored as the 2020 Johnson County recipients at the Governor’s Volunteer Stars Award ceremony hosted virtually by Volunteer Tennessee on February 7, 2021.