News & Announcements

TFS recognizes outstanding upper school students for 2016-17


Upper school students at Tallulah Falls School started a day of celebration on May 12 with the presentation of honors and awards for the 2016-17 academic year. Commencement ceremonies were held later in the day.

“We are proud of the achievements of these students,” said President and Head of School Larry A. Peevy. “It is my pleasure to recognize the hard work of so many deserving students.”

After the announcement of the co-valedictorian Thomas Draper Smith and Michael Shon Weidner and salutatorian Emma Elizabeth Peacock by Upper School Academic Dean Kim Popham, honors and awards were presented as follows:

Shown, from left, TFS Board of Trustees Chairwoman Amy Atkinson, Upper School Academic Dean Kim Popham, STAR Student Mark Faingold, STAR Teacher Scott Davis and President and Head of School Larry A. Peevy 
Mark Faingold and Scott Davis

Mercer University Scholarship, presented by College Counselor Bobby Hammond, III
Jordan Mincey, Jordan Teng, Emma Caldwell, Josey Keene

Georgia Certificate of Merit, presented by College Counselor Bobby Hammond
Grace Brewer, Sarah Catherine Fordham, Michelle Thevenin and Anna Davis [not pictured]


Hugh O’Brien Youth Leadership Award, announced by College Counselor Bobby Hammond, III
Sutherlan Cope and Ara Belk

University of Montevallo Scholarship, announced by College Counselor Bobby Hammond, III
Sanson Navarrete  

Abbot and Macias

Abbot and Conley

Abbot and Roberts

Abbot and Whitson


Piedmont College Scholarship, presented by David Abbot
Jena Conley, Khobe Macias, Aida Roberts, Stephen Whitson             

United Community Bank Scholarship, presented by Kathy McClure
Mark Cecil “Trey” Wilcox, III            

Circle for Children Scholarship, presented by Melinda Stuk and Diane Miller
Zatrick Pearce and Mary Katherine Watson, not pictured

H. M. Stewart Award (Valedictorian), presented by Jonathan Harris
Thomas Draper Smith and Michael Shon Weidner, co-valedictorians for the Class of 2017

Clarkesville Kiwanis Club Key Club Scholarship, presented by Grant Gunter
Shown, from left, Key Club Advisor Scott Davis, Yuting Zhang and Gunter

Woodmen Life Outstanding Proficiency in American History, presented by Dallas Barron
Sarah Catherine Fordham

Veterans of Foreign Wars Auxiliary Young American Creative Patriotic Art Award, presented by Belinda Baragona
Rachel Richardson

Rabun County Board of Realtors Scholarship, presented by Britney Brown
Emily Hall [not pictured]

Habersham County Chamber of Commerce Recognition of Valedictorian, presented by Kelly Woodall
Thomas Draper Smith and Michael Shon Weidner

Habersham County Chamber of Commerce Community Service Award, presented by Kelly Woodall
Shyam Shukla

Clayton Woman’s Club Award, presented by Lynette Burroughs
Julia Nichols

D.A.R. Good Citizen Award, presented by Dinah Peevy
William Cantrell

U.S. Army Reserve National Scholar/Athlete Award, presented by Staff Sgt. Joe Norman
Michael Van Hooser and Jenny Wang

Outstanding Art Student, presented by Georgann Lanich
Rachel Richardson

Outstanding Broadcasting Student, presented by Georgann Lanich
Sola Sofela

Outstanding Chinese Language Student, presented by June Xu
Kate Gilmer

Outstanding Culinary Arts Student, presented by Whitney Denham
Renayre Forbes

Outstanding Drama Student, presented by Carrie Elrod
Sam Griswold

Faingold and Bly

Brewer and Bly

Wonders and Bly

Bly and Bly

Outstanding English Students, presented by Kelli Bly
Mark Faingold, senior;  Grace Brewer, junior; Emily Wonders, sophomore; Alia Bly, freshman

Outstanding Fitness and Health Student, presented by Jinny Hanifan-Wagner
Laurel Smith

Indian Iron [Female], presented by Jinny Hanifan-Wagner
Cindy Trusty

Indian Iron [Male], presented by Tom Tilley
Jesse Gulle

Outstanding Mathematics Students, presented by Jim Van Hooser
Michael Weidner, senior; Jenny Wang, junior; Xing Fan, sophomore;  Jihee Han, freshman

Outstanding Music Student, presented by Curt Frederick
Madeline McClurg

Barron and Zhang

Barron and Teems

Barron and Williams

Barron and Han


Outstanding Science Students, presented by Dr. Robert Barron
Yuting Zhang, senior; Max Teems, junior; Nyah Williams, sophomore; Jihee Han, freshman

Barron and Shukla

Barron and Brewer

Barron and Smith

Barron and Bowman


Outstanding Social Studies Students, presented by Dallas Barron
Shyam Shukla, senior; Grace Brewer, junior; Mary Ellen Smith, sophomore; Stephen Bowman, freshman

Outstanding Spanish Language Student, presented by Chantal Gourlay
Sarah Catherine Fordham

Shown, from left, are TFS Board of Trustees Chairwoman Amy Atkinson, Upper School Academic Dean Kim Popham, Richardson and President and Head of School Larry A. Peevy. 

Perfect Attendance, presented by Upper School Academic Dean Kim Popham
Rachel Richardson

Outstanding Day Student, presented by Dean of Students Jimmy Franklin
Madeline McClurg

Outstanding Boarding Student, presented by Dean of Students Jimmy Franklin                    
Sola Sofela

Shown, from left, are, Dean of Students Jimmy Franklin, Zainab Pearce and Patrick Pearce, parents of Zatrick Pearce

Extra Mile Award         
Zatrick Pearce                                                                                                                                                                                            

Shown, from left, are Atkinson, TFS Board of Trustees member Jim Weidner, Michael Weidner, Peevy and Susan Weidner

  • Outstanding Character Award, presented by TFS Board of Trustees Chairwoman Award Amy Atkinson – Michael Weidner
  • Tallulah Falls School President’s Leadership Award, presented by President and Head of School Larry A. Peevy – Michael Weidner

Also recognized were Presidential Scholars, students with a 4.0 or higher GPA, zero demerits and no major disciplinary infractions and seniors who enrolled in dual enrollment classes.