• 2022 BHM Header

  • Henry County Schools is celebrating Black History Month with a focus on the contributions of African Americans to our community’s health and wellness. Below, we will be adding highlights from health professionals - past, present, and future. Please enjoy these insights from retired healthcare workers, current practitioners (including our own HCS staff), and current students in our healthcare pathways as well as Henry County Schools alumni that are pursuing careers in health and wellness.

  • Dr. Rosalyn Matthews

    "Health and wellness matter to me because without them, life is extremely difficult to manage. Health and wellness touch every aspect of living life to the fullest, so it is best to stay informed and safeguard your health. I'm most proud of my work with faith and health. My research allowed me to explore the role the church plays in health while also helping community members make informed decisions about their health and wellness. It also emphasized the value of community members working with local elected officials to help develop policies that advance health initiatives that directly affect them. I am also proud of my 20 years of work as a Senior Public Health Advisor working for the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention."

    Watch Dr. Matthews Health & Wellness conversation with Superintendent Davis here.
    Alexis Holmes

    "Community health and wellness are important to me. When I think of health and wellness, I think of more than just myself. I think of all that surrounds me including my environment and even the people around me. With this being said, I am most proud of obtaining my Certified Nursing Assistant, Stop the Bleed, and CPR certifications at a young age. While my passion as a future medical professional runs deep, I believe that it is important to utilize my passion and expertise with others and be a healthcare leader in my community. Promoting, providing access to, or providing services related to health and wellness matters to me because it is important for every person in the United States to have adequate access to health and wellness."
  • Taylor Davis

    "Everything we do and every emotion we feel in the healthcare field relates to our well-being, and our well-being affects our actions and emotions toward the community. Healthcare allows me to help save a life and teach people how to care for themselves. In terms of community health and wellness, I hope to help patients improve and promote healthy habits and behaviors for good dental health and to ensure the health and safety of patients throughout the community."

  • Dr. Chon Hester

    "Health and wellness matter to me because if we can prioritize wellness and health of our students and staff we will have positively changed the trajectory of their lives permanently; wherein, they can flourish in an ever-evolving world with a foundation that is stirred with resources, resiliency, and lots of love. Promoting, providing access to, or providing services related to health and wellness matters to me because removing barriers for our students is the impetus of my life's work, my legacy. I want to embody Dorothy Heights quote: "I want to be remembered as someone who used herself and anything she could touch to work for justice and freedom.....I want to be remembered as one who tried". Ensuring students are mentally healthy, physically well, academically successful, college/career ready is critical to me. Therefore, being a voice for those who have consistently been denied or lack access to adequate healthcare and education is and will be my legacy."
    Maria Moore

    "Health and wellness matters to me because it affects every aspect of my life. Each dimension of wellness is interrelated with another. Good health allows me to fulfill my divine purpose and serve others more effectively. I take pride in playing a crucial role in establishing a wellbeing framework for my school and conclusively, my community. Everyone benefits from healthy, productive citizens who are able to maximize their potential. I hope to raise awareness regarding the natural impact of teacher wellness on student success. I hope to inspire others to be more transparent about their struggles with mental illness by courageously sharing my own struggles in hopes of reducing the stigma."
    Maria Moore

    "Health and wellness matters to me because we have been given the responsibility to care for our bodies in order to be a help to others. Promoting, providing access to, or providing services related to health and wellness matters to me because prevention is much more effective and less costly than cure. Individuals need to have access to the information and resources that foster health and wellness in order to minimize the possibility of disease and illness. That access needs to be available to everyone regardless of their means. [I'm most proud of] participating in online sessions to explain the background and benefits of COVID vaccination; creating and managing a volunteer group of medical providers who updated critical care COVID patients' families when they were not allowed to have visitors; [and], participating in Lung Cancer screening education for employees of local businesses."
    Kennedy Griffin

    "Health and wellness matters to me because when an individual is in distress, they need to know that someone cares and will be there to advocate for them. I completed 2 pathways at Academy for Advanced Studies. I am currently a full time Dual Enrollment student at Southern Crescent Technical College majoring in Orthopedic Technology and Central Sterile Supply as I aspire to become a Prosthetist. I want to help people rehabilitate themselves so they can be an active part of our community."
  • Tasondra Price

    "Health and wellness matters to me because I believe that in order to be the best you, there has to be a balance.We have to ensure that we are practicing self-care for our bodies and our minds, if not, then we can't be there for others if we don't take care of ourselves. It is my belief, as I've shared with many of my parents and students, you have to take care of you to be the best for others. I remind my parents all the time that in order to be the best parent for their child, they have to be able to recognize where their challenges are and make whatever changes necessary. I loved seeing my children that were in foster care reunited with their parents because the parents started to focus on themselves, without the guilt and realized that they can't be there for their children, if they do not have a healthy balance for themselves. Now while working in the school system, I continue to share this same belief with parents and my students. When I see my students succeed and learn how to balance adolescence, school work and life in general by working on their needs, it makes my heart smile."
  • Glory Degue

    "Health and wellness matter to me becausethe world relies on individuals that have their back, and I want to be that person. This year we have seen countless people die and get sick, and I want to be a part of the solution. I hope to be able to find relief for many sick patients but exceptionally sickle cell. Sickle cell is a disease that drastically affects black women, and because of that, people do not take it as seriously as other diseases. I want to be that community hope for a pain-free tomorrow."
  • Dr. Nichols

    "Health and wellness matters to me becauseI am a primary care physician who believes in health access and health equity to all, so that they can reach their optimal level of health in order to be healthy and successful. I am most proud of my health equity work and leading the COVID-19 education and vaccination initiatives and being invited to speak before the US Senate on importance of vaccinations as well as being named on CNN as one of "Six Black Women Who Have Been on the Frontlines of the Fight Against COVID-19". Additionally I am very proud of my two children Jasmine Gibson Eagle’s Landing High 2017 graduate who is now a first year medical student at Brown University and Nick Gibson Eagle’s Landing High 2020 graduate who is a sophomore at Brown University and part of the PLME 8-year combined BA/MD medical program (like his sister) and that they both want to follow in my husband Dr. Gregory Gibson (Piedmont Gastroenterologist) and my footsteps to become physicians in order to make an impact to the community in healthcare."
  • Patrice Bryant

    "Promoting, providing access to, providing services related to health and wellness matters to mebecause I believe that healthy individuals create healthy families which in turn create healthy communities. I am proud of the fact that during my 16 1/2 years as a School Counselor, I have made it a priority to incorporate a daily self care regimen in my both my professional and personal life. In January 2020, I coordinated a Health and Wellness Fitness Program with Total Fit Lifestyle gym and LGMS. At the time, I was an active member of the gym. Working in collaboration with the gym owners, TFL developed and offered a 6 week fitness challenge to the faculty and staff."
  • George Dorton III

    "Health and wellness matters to me because many people are in need of healing. Healing from scars that are unseen, unnoticed, and unattended to. People are facing trauma and hardships and need to be able to visualize a positive future for themselves; if I can lead them on that journey, I have made an impact. Day by day in my practice, I try to increase the population of people who have the ability to understand, use, and manage their own emotions in positive ways to relieve stress, communicate effectively, empathize with others, overcome challenges and defuse conflict. Imagine a population of people who have this skillset…the world would be a better place. I am proud that I am able to serve as a bridge builder and advocate for the social, emotional, and mental health of the students, parents, and staff at Locust Grove Elementary School. I also function is the Positive Behavior Intervention and Supports (PBIS) coach and in this role, I help facilitate the development of a positive culture of learning."
  • Erin Bunbrige

    "Health and wellness matters to me because I think they work simultaneously. Our wellness transcends and effects our health and our overall wellbeing. Wellness matters because everything we do and every emotion relates to how well we are feeling, which affects our actions. I believe it’s important for everyone to work to achieve favorable wellness in order to improve their everyday life. I want our community to be healthy and that starts with providing our youth with services that equip them with strategies and techniques they can utilize to support their mental well-being. Helping students obtain health and wellness has a direct impact on their academic success and increases their ability to have an impact on their community."
  • Alberta Childs

    According to lifelong resident of Henry County Charlie Tomlinson, African American doctors didn’t start practicing in Henry County until at least the 1980s. As a result, Mr. Tomlinson recalls that most African Americans living in Henry County prior to the 1980s and 1990s received medical care from home remedies. One midwife Mr. Tomlinson remembers is Alberta (Tomlinson) Childs. Alberta Childs was a midwife who cared for many African American residents for different ailments. We are happy to highlight Alberta Childs for her past contributions to the health and wellness of her community throughout her life.
  • Kailan Bain

    "Health and wellness matter to me because a healthy outside starts from the inside. Developing healthy habits are essential to leading long fulfilling lives as adults. I hope to help educate people on the importance of oral health and how it's connected to many prevalent health complications within our community."
  • Dewayne C.Grant

    "Health and wellness matters to me because everything we do is a result of our physical, emotional, and mental health. It is critical that we look at our lives from a holistic approach and do what is possible to sustain longevity. It is critical that we focus on our mental health just as much as our physical health because we cannot function properly if we have daily stressors that are not allowing us to be our very best. It gives me great satisfaction to be able to assist my clients with moving into a positive direction after dealing with stressful times that may have impacted their mental and behavioral health. I oftentimes tell people that we as human beings are like vehicles. It may look good on the outside but if its internal components are not functioning correctly, it will not move you to the place where you want to be."
  • Jazmine Benton

    "Health and wellness matter to me because when having a healthy physical and mental health, it can lead to more of an overall positive and healthy lifestyle. An individual's health is one of the most important factors when it comes to living a flourishing life. Some people don’t know just how important their health really is, so they continue to live with an unknowing mindset of what they really need to change in order to live a better and healthier life. Therefore, one of my goals as a future health professional, is to spread and stress the importance of health and wellness so that each and every person can have the chance to live a long and prosperous life."
  • Angela Rogers

    "Health and wellness matters to me because achieving optimal health helps create the best version of you. As the district's Wellness Specialist, my role places me at the heart of assuring that our adults and students develop goals and habits for a healthy lifestyle and better overall wellness. Promoting, providing access to, or providing services related to health and wellness matters to me because I can take an active role in building capacity and helping others experience a better and healthier life."
  • Dalentina Robertson

    "Health and wellness matters to me because it is crucial to creating balance in our lives. With balance and stability, we are able to help others by example and thru advocacy work. Promoting, providing access to, or providing services related to health and wellness matters to me because it aligns with my core personal values of justice and love for humanity and my professional values of helping marginalized youth face their challenges. Youth should be taught how to effectively request and secure what they need to graduate and begin a future as contributing citizens in society."

  • Denitra Miller

    "Promoting, providing access to, or providing services related to health and wellness matters to me because it affords every individual access to important services that they may not otherwise have access to. Promoting and providing health and wellness services are vital to the overall improvement and success of our schools and communities because families can receive the necessary assistance they need to navigate through situations that may cause disruption in their daily lives. Having access to these types of services is the key to sustaining the families in our communities. I have been a social worker for twenty-two years. As a Licensed Clinical Social Worker, I am most proud of my work history and the variety of people I have been able to counsel and assist in overcoming obstacles that interfered with both their health and wellness."
  • Taniyah Johnson

    "Health and wellness matter to me because it is our body and how we live. It is important to maintain good health and wellness because it contributes to your growth and prosperity. I hope to help as many people as I can and help better the community and I also hope to work with other people to help lots of people and better the community. "
  • Raquel Moss

    "Health and wellness matters to me because I have survived 2 Strokes during my time in Henry County Schools. I have created a platform for educators to focus on their wellness through healthy eating, exercise and medication. It matters to me because students need healthy teachers in order for them to thrive. We work long hours to make sure our students and their families reach there goals and receive opportunities to accompany the pathways in life. Being a member of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority Inc. and National Council of Negro Women gives me more personal access to women and men in the health care industry that provides connection to my school and families. Promoting good healthy practices is a win for Henry County Schools."
  • Tawanda Brown Miller

    "Health and wellness matters to me because every aspect of my life is guided by me having optimal physical and mental well-being needed to effectively care for and guide my children and students. Promoting services related to health and wellness matters to me because it makes my family, my students, my colleagues, and my school better. I am passionate about sharing my strategies and ideas to make those that I advocate for more resilient. Mental resiliency and having the proper tools needed to cope will give everyone a fighting chance to thrive in this world full of uncertainties."
    Hattie Barnes

    According to Mr. Deonte Smith, the great grandson of mid-to-late 20th century midwife Alberta Childs, Alberta was not the only family member who served as a granny midwife. Alberta’s mother, Hattie Miranda Stewart Barnes, also served in this role in the early 20th century. According to lifelong Henry County resident Ms. Willie Varner, the granny midwives helped deliver babies and were also considered holistic healers and caregivers. We are happy to highlight Hattie Miranda Stewart Barnes for her past contributions to the health and wellness of her community throughout her life.
  • Dana Atwell

    "Health and wellness matters to me because they impact so many areas of life, and in order to lives life to the fullest, practicing self-care and mindfulness not only allows me to better serve the community but it also allow individuals the opportunity to grow into the best version of themselves. I have been a school social worker for six years and I am most proud of having the opportunity to do what I love daily. My desire as I continue to grow in this field is to build lasting connections within the community, as well as provide the tools necessary for families to identify and utilize resources to meet the educational, social and emotional needs of students, while recognizing and adapting in an every changing environment."
  • Wanda Williams

    "Health and wellness matters to me because students must be physically, mentally, emotionally, and socially healthy to set goals and successfully attain them in school, at home, and in the community. I am most proud of leading a team of school psychologists who strive to identify each student’s strengths to help them flourish at school and home. Psychological services focus on building relationships and making connections with staff and families to improve the well-being of students. I am proud that the school psychologists promote, understand, and provide resources to address the academics, behaviors, and social well-being of students. Finally, I am pleased to implement, monitor, and revise practices districtwide that provide students with equal access to services that meet their individual needs through Section 504."
  • Tisa Dupree Bright

    "Health and wellness matter to me because I think it is the premise on which our community survives. When we are all well, we thrive. When we are unhealthy, we struggle personally and as a community. I've been a nurse for over 35 years. I think I am most proud of the relationships I've gained during my tenure at Henry County Health Department. I've had the pleasure of working with a diverse group of dedicated individuals making up a strong team of leadership for Henry County. The community sees us at the health department, but also at community functions such as church events, festivals, COVID-19 test sites and vaccine sites."
  • Tijereah Ross

    "Health and wellness matters to me because they are the key to a longer life. It is hard to enjoy life when you are not physically, mentally, or emotionally well. Since working with the seniors at Stockbridge High School I would like to say that I am extremely proud of the Class of 2022. These students have been through a lot and they still manage to come to school and push through daily obstacles. I am happy to be part of the reason they are getting into and/or thinking about going to college."