2022 IMPACT Award Recipients
Nick Barnett’s ties to Cartersville & Bartow County run deep. He was born and raised in Cartersville, living away from the area only for about 6 months while on military training assignments.
In early 2008, while attending nearby Kennesaw State University, Nick began his career with NOTS Logistics as a Warehouse Technician. For nearly 15 years, he has had the opportunity to learn the daily operations from "the ground up." Fast forward to 2022, Nick is now the Director of Southeast Operations and is responsible for multiple locations in the southeast region, ranging from employment offices, an open public warehouse, a manufacturing plant, and a national distribution center. He also serves on the NOTS Logistics Board of Directors.
Nick is very active in the Cartersville-Bartow County community. He was a member of the Leadership Bartow Class of 2014. He currently serves on the Cartersville-Bartow Chamber Board of Directors and will become Board Chair in 2024. He is the Charter/Past President of the Bartow County Lions Club, a local charter for Lions Club International, the world’s largest service organization. Nick was honored to lead the charge to launch a "working, diverse, and vibrant" local club and is especially proud of his participation in bringing the "Freedom Braille Trail" to Cartersville’s Dellinger Park. He is an active member of Gracewalk Church and volunteers with local organizations such as Salvation Army and the Etowah Scholarship Foundation Reality Store. Nick is the North GA Region Leader for F3 Nation, a men’s group dedicated to fitness, fellowship, and faith. In addition, First Lieutenant Barnett has served as an active member of the Georgia National Guard for the past six years.
NOTS Logistics President & CEO, Andy Kirchner says Barnett "balances workplace responsibilities with military, community, faith, and family obligations, rising to the top as a natural leader within various organizations. Nick positively impacts those he interacts with. In every arena he is seen as an approachable, highly engaged, and caring individual."
In 2008, Bobbie Bruton graduated from Kennesaw State University with a degree in Early Childhood Education. She began her career as a student teacher at Cartersville Elementary School. In 2010, she was named the school’s Teacher of the Year. After serving six years as a classroom instructor, Bobbie transitioned into academic and leadership coaching, having the opportunity to work in multiple United States schools and in Uganda.
Today, Bobbie is the Teacher Support Specialist & Content Area Liaison for Cartersville Elementary School. In this role, Bobbie provides support for professional learning teams, collaborates with teachers on classroom lessons, and assists with the curriculum adoption process. Bobbie is especially proud of helping secure multiple grants for school literacy programs including one for more than $200,000 to assist in closing reading gaps in the K-5 age group. Principal Becky Bryant has worked with Bobbie for the last five years and says she always puts in 100% effort, giving her best to everyone and getting the best in return.
Bobbie spends a lot of her time volunteering in the community. One of her most favorite projects is working with Cartersville Dances with the Stars, an annual dance competition benefitting the Good Neighbor Homeless Shelter and the Homeless Education Program which includes Backpack Buddies. Bobbie has performed, choreographed, and coached dancers. She is also a photographer for Project Rollway and holds multiple volunteer positions at LifePoint Church including the Women’s Conference Coordinator and Special Events Planner. She is a former board member, photographer, and educational consultant at Simone’s Kids. And she has volunteered at Graceland Church as well as the Junior Miss Scholarship Program. Attorney Zach Pritchard believes our community is "so very lucky to have Bobbie as a leader and servant" adding she "selflessly offers her time and knowledge for this community’s benefit on a frequent basis."
After earning a Master of Heritage Preservation degree in 2011 from Georgia State University, Katie Gobbi accepted the role of Euharlee Welcome Center and History Museum Director. She spent 10 years working to expand and modernize the museum. In 2015, Katie coordinated a move to the Euharlee Presbyterian Education Building creating room for a welcome center and gift shop, research space, as well as a temporary exhibit setting. With the added space, the museum can also offer expanded services such as free research resources and additional community programming.
Along with her colleagues, Katie has had the pleasure of introducing and growing multiple events in Euharlee such as the farmer’s market, Euharlee Food Truck Friday, the Covered Bridge Festival, and Covered Bridge Carols. But one of the most rewarding projects Katie has led and participated in is the continued restoration and revitalization of the Euharlee Black Pioneers Cemetery. The cemetery had long been neglected and was untidy. Katie has secured grants as well as in-kind donations from Georgia Power and Bartow County to establish a routine maintenance and conservation program.
In July 2022, Katie became the City of Euharlee’s Community Development Director. In this new role, Katie looks forward "to new opportunities to continue serving Euharlee and Bartow County in even greater ways." Katie will work closely with the Historic Preservation Commission to fulfill preservation goals and preserve Euharlee’s historic resources.
Katie was a member of the Leadership Bartow Class of 2014 and was a member of the Leadership Bartow Steering Committee from 2014-2016. She has volunteered with the Euharlee Garden Club and Cartersville Primary School Parent Techer Cooperative. Katie has also been a mentor for children in the Bartow County School System.
Katie’s former manager, Trish Sullivan, has said, "Katie’s love for Euharlee and Bartow County is exemplified in all she does."
Michael Kobito is living his dream. He is a Cartersville native and attended Bartow County schools from elementary school through high school. He always hoped to one day direct the band at Woodland High School. In 2016, Michael was named Associate Director of Bands at Woodland High School and then became Director of Bands in 2019.
He manages four concert bands, a 200-member marching band, a basketball pep band, jazz band, winter guard, and a private lessons institute. He has led the Woodland High School band to receive invitations to perform in the National Cherry Blossom Festival and Parade in Washington, D.C. and the New Year’s Day Parade in London, England. In addition, Michael led the Woodland Wind Symphony to receive invitations to perform at the University of Georgia’s Janfest, Reinhardt University’s Honor Band Clinic, and the Georgia Music Educators Association In-Service Conference.
Michael has received many notable honors including being named the 2023 Georgia Teacher of the Year, 2022 Bartow County Teacher of the Year, 2021 Woodland High School Teacher of the Year, 2021 AP Teacher with Distinction, 2021 STAR Teacher and has also been a 2021, 2020, and 2017 National Band Association Citation of Excellence Recipient.
Being the 2023 Georgia Teacher of the Year comes with many responsibilities such as serving on the State Board of Education as an ex-officio member, serving on the Board of Directors for the Georgia Partnership for Excellence in Education, speaking at conferences around the state, and partnering with the Georgia Foundation for Public Education as a consultant and advisor.
According to Woodland High School Principal, David Stephenson, "There is a reason why our band students are confident, achieve at high levels, persevere through all obstacles, and strive to be better human beings in service to themselves and others. That reason is Mr. Kobito."
Amanda Tant spends her days fighting for children. In 2011, she began her career with Advocates for Children as the Director of the Family Visitation Program. She has spent the last 11 years as a valued member of the Advocates team and was just recently promoted to the role of Vice President. Amanda now oversees the daily operations for Advocates for Children, Court Appointed Special Advocates (CASA), and the Hope in Your Home program. Encompassing 11 Northwest Georgia counties, these programs provide necessary services to children who have been victims of abuse and neglect.
Amanda is a graduate of Leadership Bartow and has served on the steering committee for the past two years. She is an active member of Rowland Springs Baptist Church, the Cartersville Elks Lodge, and the Cartersville-Bartow County Exchange Club where she became the first female president. Amanda is also a coordinator for Teen Maze, a hands-on educational program teaching teenagers how to navigate life’s challenges and make good decisions. She is chairwoman of Child Abuse Protocol and is a member of the Child Fatality Review Board.
Amanda says she works every day to educate others involved with child welfare on how to reduce trauma, recognize abuse and neglect, and teach them how that reveals itself in children. Chief Superior Court Judge D. Scott Smith agrees by noting, "She takes her service very seriously and is always looking for some way to offer more support and help for child victims."
Photos by Pics by the Moon Photography.
Previous Award Recipients