Thumbs up ... to Master Sgt. Teresa Childress-Gilliam, U.S. Army, who was recently presented with the prestigious 2012-13 NAPW Professional Woman of the Year award. An administrator for a U.S. Army Reserve unit, she is a graduate of Greenbrier East High School and a member of the GEHS Alumni Hall of Fame.
Thumbs up ... to Norfolk and Western/Virginian Railway Historical Society for choosing to hold its national convention at Twin Falls Resort State Park in June. The event includes two tours of regional sites of interest such as the Beckley Exhibition Coal Mine, and following the Virginian mainline to Page with lunch at The Whipple Company Store.
Thumbs up ... to several area post offices that recently collected care packages to send overseas. Over 10,000 pounds of supplies were collected. Post offices in Cool Ridge, Flat Top, Ghent, Josephine, Jumping Branch, Nimitz, Odd, Princewick, Shady Spring and White Oak participated. Shady Spring Middle School students created cards and letters to accompany the packages.
Thumbs up ... to Liberty High School teacher Everett Jeremy Rodriguez, who was awarded a $10,000 grant for the school’s music department in the Great American Teach-Off. The online voting event was sponsored by GOOD and the University of Phoenix. The money will go toward a computerized piano laboratory with a digital program and recording software.
Thumbs up ... to the 11th grade class at Greater Beckley Christian High School, named the winner of a seat belt safety competition, the Battle of the Belts. The school, which had a 91.5 percent usage rate, received $1,500 presented by Lt. Paul Blume of the Southern Regional Highway Safety Program.
Thumbs up ... to West Virginia University Institute of Technology, which received $150,000 for the Bryan Bills Memorial Scholarship Fund from the estate of the late Rodney Cornell. The scholarship fund is used to support civil engineering students.
Thumbs up .. to local country music stars Taylor Made. The group recently topped the New Music Weekly’s Country Chart with their hit song, “That’s What Life Is.” The band is rehearsing for its upcoming summer tour.