THS hosts first debate tourney in 10 years
Shown from left are some of the members of the first THS debate team in ten years. The members are (front from left) Jake Derry, Elizabeth Hobbs and Asian McConico. Shown back from left are Georgia Kate Kent and Tierra Collins. The team hosted a speech and debate tournament at the school on Jan. 30. The team is sponsored by Lee Robinson.

Sunset Finance cuts ribbon
Skip Griffin, chamber of commerce board chairman, helps as Hope Cook, Jennifer Pulliam, and Coretta Smith cut the ribbon outside Sunset Finance in Thomson.
Local business people gathered Wednesday, Jan. 20, for a ribbon cutting at Sunset Finance, located at 134 Railroad Street, Thomson.

Briarwood Academy fields first debate team in 30 years
Pictured from left: Will Johnson, Hammond, Jeb Blount, Bill Lester, Danny Roush and Rachel Walden.
For the first time in 30 years, Briarwood Academy has a competitive debate team.
Under the guidance of Chad Hammond, the team qualified for the GISA state competition held in Macon. The team competed for the title on Jan. 23. They came up short, but finished with very high scores, according to Hammond.
This all started in Hammond's sophomore Government class where the students participated in "Lincoln-Douglas" style debates that date back to when Abraham Lincoln was running for president.

Morris named Forward McDuffie executive director
Matthew Morris
The steering committee of Forward McDuffie announced Jan. 18 that Matthew A. Morris has been named to the position of Executive Director. The committee has been actively searching for the past nine months to fill the open position that was created by the departure of the previous director in January 2015.
Morris will be Forward McDuffie’s senior staff member, providing leadership and direction for the promotion and economic development of the City of Thomson, Town of Dearing and McDuffie County.

McDuffie BOE appoints Knox
Andy Knox, Sr. will begin his term in Febraury.
In light of the passing of Tinye Harding, the McDuffie County Board of Education appointed Andy Knox, Sr. to fill the remainder of Harding’s term.
Knox, who is currently waiting to be sworn in by Probate Court Judge Valerie Burley, will begin serving on the board at the February board meeting on Feb. 9.

Glascock responders learn decision-based driving
The decision-based driving simulator is pulled into the parking lot of the Glascock County Sheriff’s Office Jan. 6 to allow deputies and firefighters to learn driving techniques to use during emergency response situations.
The theme of the Glascock County Sheriff’s Office over the past few months has been training.
The latest offering to deputies and the county fire department has been effective driving in response to emergency situations.
The Sheriff’s Office hosted a driving simulator class Jan. 6 to provide decision-based driver training to public safety personnel. n two-hour training blocks, Glascock County deputies and firefighters were put into everyday driving and emergency situations without being on the road in their vehicles.

Sharing Broadway with academia
Kenneth Roberson instructs dance students at Indiana University.
A Thomson native who performed and choreographed on Broadway for more than 20 years is teaching college students the things he learned from his career.
Kenneth Roberson, who attended the McDuffie County Training School, R.L. Norris and Thomson High School, is a veteran performer of Broadway musicals and currently a professor in the Theatre, Drama and Contemporary Dance Department at Indiana University. Outside of school, he is a theatrical director and choreographer. He choreographed the Broadway adaptation of “Avenue Q,” which went on to win the 2004 Tony Award for best musical.

Living a double life: Basketball and military
Turman is shown in the TV St. Ingbert Saints uniform during one of the team’s games.
A young kid from Thomson, who started playing basketball in the recreational league, now plays basketball and lives half way around the world in Germany.
“I have to say it really didn’t mean much to me then because I was a die hard football fan, but as I became skilled and understood the game, I began to love it,” said T.C. Turman, a Thomson native and now German basketball player.

Watson-Brown announces 2015-16 junior board
The 2015-16 Junior Board members are pictured above from left to right. Front Row: Thomas Williamson, senior, Westminster Schools, Junior Board Vice-Chair, Bill Lester, junior, Briarwood Academy, Junior Board Secretary, Chris Page, senior, Columbia County home school, Junior Board Chair, Jackson Hildebrant, senior, Jefferson County High, Jeremy Wilkerson, sophomore, Warren County home school. Back Row: Holland Cook, freshman, McDuffie County home school, Louisa Shepherd, sophomore, Burke County, home school, Katie Page, sophomore, Augusta Prep, Alyssa Carrad, sophomore, Westminster Schools, Kate Wells, senior, Briarwood Academy, Ava Burgess, junior, Davidson Fine Arts, Junior Board Historian, Julia Pruitt, junior, Westminster Schools. Not pictured: Jarkevin Clark, junior, Warren County High.
The Watson-Brown Foundation would like to announce the 2015-2016 Junior Board – Thomson Chapter. These students are outstanding teens from CSRA high schools and home schools that excel in academics, sports and community activities.

Calling all artists
A replica of a 12-string Stella guitar, the guitar that Blind Willie McTell played, which stood outside the office of the CVB in downtown Thomson in 2014.
The Thomson-McDuffie County Convention & Visitors Bureau is seeking 10 artists who can design, plan and paint polyurethane replicas of a 12-string Stella guitar, the guitar that Blind Willie McTell chose to play on his way to fame.
The blank guitars will be provided to the selected artists at the end of January, when the finalists will be selected and announced. The finished guitars will be placed in various locations throughout the community at the end of March.

McDuffie Progress

McDuffie Progress

McDuffie Progress

McDuffie Progress