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JCCF honors retired teachers by giving scholarships in their names

The Johnson County Community Foundation (JCCF) recently held a dinner to honor Carol Stout, Barbara Henson, Patsy Cullop, Betty Brown and Russell Love, five retiring educators from Johnson County’s schools. The organization, an affiliate fund of East Tennessee Foundation, was created in 2001 to strengthen communities and to improve the quality of life for people living in Johnson County. They operate on grants that help provide funding for programs such as educational and community outreach activities. JCCF is the recipient of charitable donations, many that are anonymous but they also sponsor fundraisers such as the yearly golf tournament and the local talent show to raise monies.
Ciera Boudle, Brandy Lewis, Kelsey Watson, Amber Davis and Tabitha Livingston were each awarded the Johnson County Education Growth Scholarships, given in memory or in honor of the five Johnson County educators. The scholarships were for $1,000 each for two years for a total of $2,000 per student. A donation was previously awarded to a graduating senior in memory of Susan Mast that provided a scholarship for four years in the amount of $2,500 per year totaling $10,000. Additionally, there were three other recipients of scholarships awarded by JCCF for $7,500 per year for a total of four years in the amount of $30,000. This Johnson County Scholarship is funded by an unidentified donor who wants to give back to the county.
According to Joe Herman, Coach Russell Love spent many years teaching in the Johnson County School System, but was perhaps best known for coaching football, playing Santa Claus and his famous snow dance. Herman played for Coach Love from middle school through high school. “As a coach, he taught us a lot about leadership and respect,” he said. He gave Love credit for those qualities he still uses today of leadership, teamwork and accountability. “It was a privilege to watch him walk in faith,” Herman said. “We knew he loved us and really cared about all of us.”
Carol Stout entered the halls of Johnson County schools in 1970. According to John Master, she returned to East Tennessee State University to further her education and received her master’s degree in 1985. She became a first grade teacher at Mountain City, a job she loved for 38 years. Stout’s spirit of giving and caring about those in her community is apparent in the many various ministries and organizations she works with that give back to the people of Johnson County.
Patsy Cullop earned in Bachelor of Science from Berea College in Kentucky and majored in physical education. According to Barbara Seals, Cullop taught PE at Mountain City Elementary School from 1984 to 2013. Her biggest challenge during her teaching years was spending one semester moving from one elementary school to another while pregnant with her son. She is known for her sweet and quiet nature, despite carrying a loud whistle around her neck that she did not hesitate to use.
According to Priscilla Davis, Barbara Henson graduated from Appalachian High School in 1963, received her Bachelor from Appalachian State in 1968 before teaching middle school and then moving onto high school in 1985. She received her master’s degree from East Tennessee State University and became a school counselor until 2007. She taught for seven years in the parochial schools before teaching for 27 years in Johnson County. Davis shared a story about Henson and angel food cake where one of Henson’s co-workers thought she could safely hide a cake in Henson’s classroom and it would be undisturbed, but Henson soon discovered the cake and how good it tasted.
“I have worked with all the people being honored tonight, “ said Minnie Miller as she introduced Betty Brown. Brown received her Bachelor of Science at Carson Newman in 1976, followed by her master’s degree from the University of Tennessee in 1977. She served as a teacher, coach, assistant principal, and both an elementary and high school principal. She has taught as an adjunct instructor at five difference community colleges and universities and was invited by Laura Bush to speak at Helping America’s Youth National Southeast Regional Conference in 2007, as well as receiving the Tennessee Principal of the Year award in 2004. She continues to remain active in the community. Miller describes Brown as one of the most positive people she has ever known, always sees the glass half full and is encouraging. She recalled that Brown encouraged her students to be shining stars. “I hope I can shine as bright as you one day,” said Amber Davis, who received the Betty Brown Scholarship.