2019 IMPACT Award Recipients
Kelly Armstrong is described by those who nominated her with words like “leader,” “responsible,” “successful,” and “respected.”
Working at YANMAR America Corporation since 2010, in her current role as Parts Operations Manager, Kelly manages and improves the fill rates for Parts Operations by standardizing and improving processes in the part inventory management and operations departments. She also plans and maintains work systems, procedures, and policies that enable and encourage optimum performance of the team. This is her third position at YANMAR’s Adairsville location, previously serving as Quality Department Manager and Quality Engineer/Coordinator.
In her career with YANMAR, Kelly became the company’s first female Quality Manager in its 100+ year history. She is a leader of kaizen events in the US, which is a global program within YANMAR to recognize, award, and expand the business through continuous improvement, and she leads the Global Quality Improvement team. She has earned the respect of her colleagues, not only in the United States, but in all of the countries in which she has worked: Japan, India, Korea, China, Spain, and Italy. She has shared her experience with other female leaders in the company, serving as a mentor and helping them navigate the workplace. She led a team of existing managers to develop a leadership training course for existing and emerging leaders called LEAD I and LEAD II, which launched last year and has been highly received, creating a waiting list of supervisors, managers, and identified talent to develop into leaders within the company. Kelly willingly shares that her leadership style is to lead by example. She says, “Everywhere I have worked; I have strived to provide a positive culture by motivating the team around me. I feel the best way to achieve results is to work together to improve the process of operations.”
Kelly has been drag racing since she was 14 years old, which has given her a platform to give back to the community. She has participated in DARE events and Anheuser-Busch’s family day and Bring Your Child to Work Day to speak about safety and personal goals. She has spoken at career days at Adairsville and Calhoun high schools, participated in the Chick-fil-A 5K, Susan G Komen 5K, Back Pack Buddies program, Bread of Life Ministry, and disaster relief efforts following the Bartow County tornadoes.
Dr. Marc Feuerbach
Dr. Marc Feuerbach
In a letter of recommendation, a member of the Cartersville City School Board shared that Dr. Marc Feuerbach enriches and empowers our community by his presence. The letter states, “He makes us proud. A true public servant, his intelligence, kindness, and sense of purpose will enrich our school system and our community.”
Serving as Superintendent of Cartersville City Schools since July 2018, Dr. Feuerbach spent his first year in this role focused on building upon the system’s solid foundation. He shares that “Any ideas we implement, regardless of their innovation or good intentions, will crumble if our foundation is not strong.”
In his first year as superintendent, he implemented a process called Capturing Kids Hearts. The innovators of Capturing Kids Hearts describe it as a way to “show teachers how to create high-achieving centers of learning by strengthening students’ connectedness to others through enhancing healthy bonds with their teachers and establishing collaborative agreements of acceptable behavior.” More than 150 employees in the system have been trained and the impact it is having in the classrooms is astounding. In order to have a visual reminder of the system’s focus, Marc redesigned the organizational chart, putting students and teachers at the top and the board of education and himself at the bottom. This does not mean that students are calling the day-to-day shots, but it helps keep the focus where it should be: on students and teachers. Previously during his tenure as principal at Cartersville High School, the high school graduation rate increased from 79.1% to 91.6%. And just recently, Cartersville City Schools was named a top 10 school district in Georgia by Niche and this is an accomplishment he hopes the system will continue to achieve for years to come.
In his spare time, Marc and his wife teach Sunday School at Cartersville First Baptist Church. They also serve as mentors through the Cartersville City Schools Mentor Canes program. He has enjoyed participating in Backpack Buddies 5K and Glow Run for Life. He is a member of the current Leadership Bartow class and has been elected to serve on the 2020 Chamber of Commerce Board of Directors. Marc has been a member of Cartersville Rotary Club for five years, the Georgia School Superintendents Association for one year, and the Professional Association of Georgia Educators for eleven years.
Jessica Mitcham has been a champion for our neighbors in need for more than a decade. When asked about her role, she states: “Of all the truths there are about our work, for me it is a daily commitment to ‘do what is best for the people we serve.’”
Jessica Mitcham has served as Executive Director of Good Neighbor Homeless Shelter since 2009. As the principal leader of the organization, she works hand-in-hand with the Board of Directors to secure the present and envision the future of the organization. During her tenure, Good Neighbor Homeless Shelter has grown from serving 23 individuals per day at the Porter Street location to 30 currently. With the addition of the new shelter location, the organization anticipates sheltering 100 people per day including about 45 children by the end of 2019. In 2013, the shelter added a transitional housing program, which initially launched with 3 units and will close 2019 with 13 units serving about 45 people in this program. Under Jessica’s leadership, fundraising revenue to the shelter has increased by 340%.
In his recommendation of her, the Chairman of the Board of the Community Foundation of Northwest Georgia stated that Jessica is the most competent, qualified nonprofit executive that he has ever worked with. He further states, “I can think of no more deserving candidate for your IMPACT Award.”
Jessica has been a member of Rotary Club of Bartow County since January 2011 and has served as its Service Project Chair since June of that year. She is a graduate of the 2012 class of Leadership Bartow and served as the chair of the Steering Committee for the Class of 2016. She is currently serving a two-year term with the Youth Leadership Bartow program. Jessica is in her second year of service on the Board of Directors with the Community Foundation of Northwest Georgia and the Bartow Literacy Council. She just began her second term on the Board of Directors with Bartow Collaborative and serves on the School Governance Council at Cartersville Primary, Elementary, and Middle schools. She is a licensed social worker in the State of Georgia and a volunteer cheerleading coach through Cartersville Parks and Recreation. She and her family are members of Cartersville First Baptist Church where she teaches a 4th Grade Sunday School Class.
In his recommendation, a local business owner says, “Lillie Read is a leader in her field and her work to significantly impact Cartersville is unmistakable. The festivals, concerts, art and community that are abundant in Downtown Cartersville have all been blessed by her hands.”
Lillie has served as Manager of the Downtown Development Authority for Cartersville since 2009. In this role, she strives to enhance the downtown streetscape with public art, promote representation and diversity through public projects, and offer grants for business development. She serves on various committees and coalitions, works to find new funding sources for downtown events, encourages business retention, speaks at local schools and civic groups, develops new programs, and supports community partners. She states “...my work is an exercise in creative community impact. I strive to make downtown accessible, lovable, interesting, engaging, and fun and to make sure that the community is proud of the district that, so often, characterizes their city.”
During her tenure, Downtown Cartersville has had over 90% occupancy and a renewed Business Improvement District. Two of her most significant accomplishments include: obtaining a Georgia Humanities Grant that evolved into the African American Heritage Trail of Bartow County, which recently won a statewide award from the Georgia Downtown Association; and a Georgia Vibrant Communities Grant for public art that successfully brought three piece of public sculpture into the downtown district, two of which have been permanently given to the city since that time.
Lillie has been a member of the National Trust for Historic Preservation for over five years and a member of the Georgia Downtown Association for four years. In 2009, she was awarded the Preservation Achievement Award by the Georgia Historic Preservation Division. She is a member of Cobb County Gem and Mineral Society and has volunteered with the Flashpoint Arts Initiative since 2008.
Tom Shinall is proud to be the sixth generation of his family to call Bartow County home. Dating back to the mid-1800s, Tom’s family has built a legacy within our community. He will be the first to tell you that that legacy comes with responsibility. He sees it as an honor to uphold and build upon his family’s reputation and strives to lead with a servant heart. He says, “I hope to make others better. I hope to make our community better.”
In one of Tom’s recommendation letters, a co-worker stated, “Whenever there is a need for a volunteer or there is work to be done, Tom is among the first to step forward...”
Currently serving as Director of Development for Savoy Automobile Museum, Tom believes that his entrepreneurial background and ability to adapt have been the secrets to his success. In 2002, Tom co-founded The TC Show, a DJ service and entertainment group, which, in 2012 was named the Cartersville-Bartow County Chamber of Commerce Small Business of the Year. His professional background includes work with Advocates for Children, where, during his tenure the organization opened the Children’s Advocacy Center. The addition of this program created a safe harbor for victims of child abuse in our community to tell their story. Tom has worked in national sales, sports broadcasting/radio, and previously as Director of Marketing at Booth Western Art Museum. The impressive list of organizations of which Tom is a member includes Rotary Club of Etowah, Bartow Hospitality Association, Atlanta Metro Travel Association, Historic High Country Travel Association, Southeast Tourism Society, Cartersville-Bartow County Chamber of Commerce, and Atlanta Press Club. He is a graduate of both Youth Leadership Bartow in 2000 and Adult Leadership Bartow in 2010. He currently serves on the board of directors for the Cartersville-Bartow County Convention & Visitors Bureau as Marketing Committee Chair. Tom and his wife, Elizabeth, and son, Walter Douglas, are members of Cartersville First Baptist Church.
Tom says, “I want my service to this community to be felt long after I am gone...to impact the seventh, eighth, ninth, tenth generations of Shinalls. I may never know the true impact my service has on this community and I am okay with that as long as it benefits others for the greater good.”
Pictures courtesy of Pics by the Moon Photography.
Previous Award Recipients