The 10th anniversary of the Banks County Rotary Club was celebrated on Nov. 12 with a dinner that included remarks from former governor Nathan Deal, the recognition of the club’s first president Jerry Boling with a Lifetime Award and the presentation of $15,000 to the Foods 2 Kids program that was raised by club members.

Nathan Deal, the 82nd Governor of Georgia, was the keynote speaker for the event held in the conference room at the Banks County Board of Education.

Gov. Deal, also a Rotarian, is a Paul Harris Fellow, and plans to be a guest lecturer at the University of North Georgia and at his alma mater, Mercer University. Deal was elected to the Georgia Senate in 1980, and served in the U.S. House of Representatives from 1993-2010 when he resigned to campaign for Governor. He served as Governor from 2011-2019.

Gov. Deal talked about some of his accomplishments while Governor of Georgia, including bringing 816,000 private sector jobs to the state in his eight years in office, as well as improving the education system. He said when he took office the state had two days worth of funding in the rainy day fund and when he left office eight years later there was $3 billion in the rainy day fund.

“The State of Georgia is in very, very good shape,” Gov. Deal said.

At the Rotary celebration, Rotarian Becky Carlan presented a $15,000 check to Chuck Toney, The Food Banks of Northeast Georgia Executive Director, for funding for the Foods 2 Kids Program.

Rotary President Mark Boling presented Jerry Boling with the Lifetime Award.

During the meeting, those in attendance held a moment of silence to remember Rotarian Brother Jim McLendon, who passed away earlier this year.

The club was chartered on November 12, 2009. The club was sponsored by the Habersham County Rotary Club and Jerry Boling served as the first president of the Banks County Rotary Club in 2009-2010.

Other Rotary presidents include: Christ Erwin, 2010-2011; Sallie Hensley, 2011-2012; Doug Cheek, 2012-2013; Brent Nicholson, 2013-2014; Todd Hubbard, 2014-2015; Leslie George, 2015-2016; Rick Billingslea, 2016-2017; Jeff Lewallen, 2017-2018; Becky Carlan, 2018-2019; and current president Mark Valentine, 2019-2020.

There are currently seven active charter members, including, Stephanie Blevins, Jerry Boling, Doug Cheek, Jeff Lewallen, Brent Nicholson, Charles Turk and Mark Valentine.

Shane Burr, Rotary District Governor in 2009-2010 and Assistant District Governor in 2009-2010 David Foster were both in attendance at the celebration as well as other club members.

Burr told the Banks County club members to “continue to be the club that you have been for 10 year, but double that.”

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