The Boys and Girls Clubs of Bartow County was begun in 1990 with the purpose of inspiring and enabling young people to realize their full potential as productive, responsible and caring citizens. They provide a wide range of educational, social and enrichment programs, and are open when children and their families need them the most – after school and all day during summer and school holidays. They are a local branch of a national organization which offers tested, proven and recognized programs in five areas:

  • Character and Leadership Development
  • Education and Career Development
  • Health and Life Skills
  • The Arts
  • Sports, Fitness and Recreation

Within our Bartow County area, young people will find a caring, nurturing, warm and safe environment, with professional staff and volunteers who offer guidance and have a genuine concern for their well-being. Specific outcomes are academic success, good character and citizenship, and healthy lifestyles.

The local organization has two community-based clubs, the Cartersville Unit on Henderson Drive, and the Adairsville Unit on King Street. Since 2006, the Boys and Girls Clubs of Bartow County, in keeping with their focus on academic success, has sponsored a college scholarship through the Etowah Scholarship Foundation for a graduating high school senior who is a current member or alumnus. We are proud to be a part of this journey for some of our youth who need it the most.


The Ric Mason Memorial Service Scholarship was started in 2007 in loving memory of Ric Mason, who was serving as Etowah Scholarship Foundation’s Executive Director at the time of his death. He was killed suddenly in a tragic accident at a remote location in Honduras while on a mission trip. He died on Tuesday, February 6, 2007; this was his seventh annual mission trip. He and his fellow missionaries donated their time to serve the Honduran people through building infrastructure and housing for the poorest of villages.

Ric was born October 1, 1948 in Sandersville, GA. He graduated from Wilkinson County High School in 1966 and The Georgia Institute of Technology in 1970. His degree was in Industrial Management. Throughout his life, he showed his dedication to community service in many ways. He served as president of the Cartersville Little League, and was instrumental in the creation of the Cartersville-Bartow Youth Soccer Association, becoming an active supporter for the next 10 years. He was a charter member of the Cartersville Optimist Club and a member of Tabernacle Baptist Church where he served on numerous committees as well as teaching an adult Sunday School class for over thirty years. In 2002 he became the Executive Director of the Etowah Foundation, raising monies and awarding scholarships to local youth. Prior to accepting this position, Ric was a successful restauranteur. He was McDonald’s Regional Director for the Atlanta area in the 1970’s. He later had a catering business in Cartersville and a restaurant known as The Meating Place. In 1986 he was named Small Businessman of the Year by the Cartersville-Bartow Chamber of Commerce.

Family and friends who wished to commemorate his passing were asked to make a donation to the Etowah Scholarship Foundation. Thus the Ric Mason Memorial Service Scholarship was created as an endowment. The funds generated by this investment continue to support college scholarships for local Bartow County students each year. Each year, the scholarship is awarded to two students who have demonstrated exemplary involvement in their community and service to others.


Mount Zion Missionary Baptist Church in Cartersville, Georgia is rich in history, having been first organized in the mid 1800’s. The small congregation erected their first church building in 1875, and moved into a brick structure in 1879. Very early in their history they showed a commitment to education by founding their own school. Today the church meets at their permanent location at 147 Jones Street in Cartersville, and includes children, youth, seniors, business people, working people and professional people among their numbers. They began funding scholarships through the Etowah Scholarship Foundation in 2014. Recent recipients have been their college students – members of Mount Zion church and active in church ministries. We are honored to be part of this partnership in supporting these young people’s desire to further their education.


The Euharlee Historical Society is a non-profit organization comprised of individuals who are interested in preserving and sharing the history and heritage of the city of Euharlee. The Historical society operates the Euharlee Welcome Center and History Museum. In addition to meeting quarterly, it completes a preservation project each year, publishes a newsletter – the Euharlee Echo – and has published two Euharlee History and Heritage books.

Since 2011, in keeping with their vision of preserving Euharlee’s history for future generations, EHS has sponsored a scholarship for a student with an interest in history or museum studies. The scholarship is named in honor of the original founder of the Euharlee Historical Society, Mary Ellen Taff, who spent her lifetime preserving local history and heritage. She grew up in the “mule and horses era” when Euharlee was home to a general store, a blacksmith shop, a gristmill, and homes of people who had settled on Cherokee land. Still standing from those early days is the well-known covered bridge, spanning Euharlee Creek.

The Etowah Scholarship Foundation is privileged to be a part of this community based tribute to local history and thank EHS for their dedication to the youth of our community. To find out more about the Euharlee Welcome Center & History Museum, go to


Paul and Marijon have celebrated over 50 years of marriage! It was true love when they met in high school, yes, they are high school sweethearts! A loving, giving couple, they have two grown daughters and seven grandchildren!  Paul and Marijon have been active supporters of the Etowah Scholarship Foundation, as well as the local community, for many years.  They fund and maintain 3 scholarships within the Foundation:

  1. The Annie Felton Ogram Scholarship
  2. The John and Ann Collins Memorial Scholarship
  3. The Mr. and Mrs. Thomas H. Bennett Scholarship

A graduate of Cartersville High School, Shorter College, and Georgia School of Banking, Paul has been an active servant of the people throughout life, serving as a minister, banking professional, and an active community volunteer. Paul is currently serving in the Georgia House of Representatives and is an active member of the Rotary Club of Bartow.

Paul began his professional career in banking at Cartersville Federal Savings and Loan in 1969.  In 2007 he retired as County President of Crescent Bank. Paul chose to go into the ministry in 1980, first at Macedonia Baptist Church in Euharlee followed by ten years at Peoples Valley Baptist Church, and finally at Friendship Baptist Church until 2000. Paul is an ordained minister and recently served as a deacon at Cartersville First Baptist Church.  Paul has served as Chairman of the Cartersville/Bartow County Chamber of Commerce. He has served as Executive Director and Board Member of the Etowah Scholarship Foundation, and on the Board of Directors for the Boys and Girls Club of Bartow County.

In addition, he has also served on the Board of Trustees for the Georgia Highlands College Foundation, and Board of Trustees for North Metro Tech College Foundation, The Board of Directors for the Bartow County Community Foundation, the Governmental Affairs Committee for Cartersville/Bartow County, the Chamber Transportation Study Committee, and the Bartow County Civic Center Committee. Paul has served on the Bartow Industrial Development Authority, and the Joint Development Authority.

Marijon attended Kennesaw State University for both her undergraduate and graduate degrees. Her successful career in teaching could be witnessed throughout Bartow County as well as the in the city of Cartersville schools. She was a tough, caring, beloved teacher who moved into administration where she was the Assistant Principal at Woodland High and Cartersville Middle where she retired.

We want to thank Paul and Marijon for their continued support of the Etowah Scholarship Foundation, without their support, talent and many contributions over the years, the Foundation would not be where it is today.

TOYO TIRES SCHOLARSHIPS                                                          

TOYO Tires, located in White Georgia, has been supporting the Etowah Scholarship Foundation and the Bartow Community with scholarships since 2007. The “Toyo Tires North America Scholarship” is an annual scholarship that started with (3), $1000 scholarships and, since 2015, has generously increased to (5), $1000 scholarships each year.

Established in 1966, Toyo Tire U.S.A. Corp. represents the innovation, quality, performance, and excellent service that Toyo Tires has delivered worldwide for more than 70 years.

Toyo Tires offer a complete selection of premium replacement tires for nearly every make and model including light trucks, SUVs, high performance cars, and luxury vehicles, as well as commercial trucks. Many of these tires are built here in the United States at our state-of-the-art factory in Bartow County, Georgia.

Cartersville-Bartow County Exchange Club has been supporting the youth of our community since 1987. The Exchange club was founded in 1911 by business executives who simply wanted to exchange ideas. Current club president is Bart Moore and the organization has 25 local, active members. Those 25 members are tasked with all of the fund-raising efforts to support the organizations in the community that align with their core values of family, community and country.

The Exchange Club’s national project is the prevention of child abuse. Over the past 5 years, the club has donated over $100,000 to local non-profits including the Etowah Scholarship Fund. Their fundraising events are local favorites and include the Cartersville Christmas parade, and the Reverse Raffle that takes place in May. They have hopes to add a third event soon!

The Exchange Club of Cartersville started their Etowah Scholarship Fund as early as 1987 but in 2006 when previous club president Otis Chupp passed away unexpectedly, the scholarship was re-named to Exchange Club/Otis Chupp Scholarship and goes to a graduating senior who is a son or daughter of a public servant.

We are thrilled to have such a pillar of the community support the Etowah Scholarship Foundation and the many youth in the area they have helped serve through their scholarship!

We would like to spotlight the Scott Salter Memorial Scholarship. This scholarship was created in 2016 and funded by family and friends in loving memory of Scott Salter. We join with those who will remember Scott’s birthday in February.

Scott was an admired Language Arts teacher at Cass High School for his entire teaching career. As a former teacher there, this scholarship is awarded yearly to a Cass High student. He had a great passion for writing and inspiring others. He related to students in a unique way as he mentored them to be the best they could be.

In 2016, Miss Brookner Trouten was the first recipient of this scholarship, and in 2017, it was awarded to Miss Stephanie Robledo. Miss Trouten chose to begin her college career at Georgia Southern, while Miss Robledo studies at Georgia State. Both girls have designated biology for their undergraduate degrees, and each hopes to continue their educational paths into the medical field.

Both recipients of the Scott Salter Memorial Scholarship have shared that it was an honor to receive this particular award as they have memories of Mr. Salter being well-loved and greatly respected.

We thank the Salter family for graciously setting up this scholarship fund that not only memorializes Scott, but also helps deserving students to continue their education, which meant so much to Scott.


If you have ever had the pleasure of visiting Grand Oaks in Cartersville for their Christmas Open House, you have become a part of the Hubert and Eva Thacker Memorial Education Scholarship. This particular scholarship was formed in memory of Mr. and Mrs. Thacker by their children. Since the 1980s, these memorial scholarships have been annually awarded to two students – one from Cartersville City and one from Bartow County. To date, 64 of these memorial scholarships have been awarded to area students.

Ray Thacker, owner and operator of Grand Oaks, has a very large place in his heart for education. He comes from a family of sharecroppers, and among his family of eight, Ray has said that only three of them went to high school and one to college. As a self-made man, who has built himself from a sharecropper’s son to the multi-talented host, caterer, decorator, hairstylist (and more!) that the Cartersville community knows and loves, Ray places a very high value on education. As a result of his appreciation for education and his desire to help others pursue education themselves, Ray uses the proceeds from his annual Christmas Open House to continue to help fund this memorial scholarship.

The Etowah Scholarship Foundation and the student recipients of this memorial scholarship appreciate Ray’s continued generosity and his heart that inspires so many. Thank you, Ray, for the gift of education! If you would like to make a contribution to this (or any) scholarship, but missed Grand Oaks’ Christmas Open House, you can contact the Etowah Scholarship Foundation to do so.



The Cartersville branch of this very large international company (founded in 1852, headquartered in St. Louis, Missouri) has been giving scholarships through the Foundation since 1993, the year that the local Cartersville plant began operation. What a testament that they jumped right into making a difference in their local community immediately upon their opening! The original criteria assigned to this scholarship was to “encourage a major in science and math” and was disbursed to a senior from each of the then three existing high schools in Bartow County. The first scholarships given went to Celest Chadwick, Linda Vernon and April Burns in 1993. Through the last 24 years, Anheuser Busch has continued to faithfully fund their scholarships yearly and have helped hundreds of students in Bartow County from all current high schools, including non-traditional students. While our little county is just a speck on the map to this international, multi-billion dollar company, their caring and giving spirit in each of their operating locations shines and shows that they are determined to help make the communities where their employees live, work and play a better place.


A great way to honor your loved ones who have passed on is through a lasting remembrance by way of a memorial scholarship. This scholarship was started in 1994 in memory of a great man, Walter A. Johnson, Sr., March 17, 1922-March 27, 1994. Mr. Johnson was born and raised in Bartow County. After Mr. Johnson’s education was completed at Morehouse College in Atlanta, he returned to Cartersville and devoted his life to the education of children here, serving as principal of Bartow Elementary School (today known as Hamilton Crossing), through and including the 1968-69 school year when Bartow County Schools were totally integrated. He was the first African American man in the State of Georgia to serve as principal in a predominantly white school (Cass Elementary School #2). What a pioneer Mr. Johnson was! We are so pleased and proud to be able to manage the memorial endowment scholarship in his name! Mr. Johnson touched many lives, and this tribute scholarship is an excellent way to reward deserving students and recall Mr. Johnson’s gifts to our community.




Dr. and Mrs. Paul Eberhard at Mockingbird Dental Associates – The “Dr. Paul Eberhard Scholarship” was started in 2004 and was given to Misty Johnson the first year it was awarded. The name was changed to “Mockingbird Dental Associates Scholarship” in 2011. This scholarship currently helps TWO students each year to reach their goals of higher education. The Eberhards are good friends to the Foundation and have always done more than fund scholarships. Dr. Eberhard served on our Board of Directors for several years and currently helps us and supports us with our fundraisers. Thirteen years of scholarships, thousands of dental exams, hundreds of hours of service to our community through organizations they support. What a gift Paul and Debbie Eberhard are to Bartow County, Georgia! We join with young students who have received their scholarships and say THANK YOU!



Scholarships at the Etowah Scholarship Foundation can be started and funded by businesses, individuals, groups, friends, etc. We are spotlighting TRINITY CROSSTALK, a Sunday School class at Trinity United Methodist Church! They started their scholarship in 1992 in memory of Brock Brown. For 25 years, this close-knit group of church members/friends has donated to a fund that each year helps one special student that is an active member of Trinity United Methodist Church. The first student to receive this scholarship in 1992 was Amy Vinson. The donor chose to follow her and awarded her their scholarship each year until she completed college! We are so thankful for this Sunday School class that has continually given for 25 years, helping countless students realize their dreams of a college education!



Let me tell you a short story…  Once there was a little family in Cartersville that had a lot of girls.  A bunch of sisters!  These sisters were very close, grew up here in Cartersville, later raised their families here, and continue to live here and support education and community in too many ways to count!  They are the Parris Girls.  Some of these sisters now have daughters that are Parris Girls, who have given them granddaughters that are Parris Girls, and so on and so forth.  You get the idea…  A family of women who love their small town and want to give back.   Most of you in the community know these beautiful well-respected ladies, and while they all now have different last names through marriage, to Cartersville folks who know them and grew up with them, they will always be the Parris Girls.  This group of women, their daughters and their families funded their initial scholarship in 2001.  The criteria was set as:  female graduate of Cartersville High School who showed interest in sports, music or drama in high school.  It was awarded to Brooke Spencer that year and has been awarded yearly since then to deserving young students.  We thank them and honor them for their support and gifts to students in Bartow County that are reaching for the stars!



We are happy to spotlight one of our corporate donors – AMPACET! They have been doing business in Cartersville since 1995 and started their scholarship with us in 2013. AMPACET in Cartersville is one of six production plants in North America of this international plastics company. This is a great example of how a local business, part of a much, much larger international company, can still make a difference in their local community! AMPACET has specific criteria for their scholarship which designates the award be given each year to a child or grandchild of an AMPACET employee. Many thanks to Donnie Bagwell and AMPACET for providing a helping hand to a Bartow County student each year!



In 1983, the JAYCEES’ JACKIE TIDWELL SCHOLARSHIP was started by the CARTERSVILLE JAYCEES and MEMBERS OF THE TIDWELL FAMILY AND JOAN MOORE, widow of the late Jackie Tidwell.  We would like to spotlight these donors and thank them for supporting our students in Bartow County for 34 years!  This scholarship was originally set up to be given to students who would be attending a vocational/technical school in the state of Georgia and later to a descendent of the Jackie Tidwell Family. Criteria in present day is very broad, and the scholarship will go to a graduating high school senior that attended a Bartow County High School.  We are so thankful for these special donors that created this endowment scholarship in 1983, for it has been awarded to and helped so many students since that time!



OPTIMIST CLUB OF CARTERSVILLE! We are honored to manage a scholarship that this group started in 1983 (one of our first scholarships!!). For 34 years, the Optimist Club of Cartersville has made funding a scholarship for students in Bartow County a priority. Some of the first students to receive this scholarship were Jay Jay Cantrell, Rhonda Tankersley, Jeff Bearden, Terri Patterson, Allison Evans and Tony Norwood. The Optimist Club sponsors our Stars & Stripes Over Cartersville 4th of July Parade in downtown Cartersville each year. This event also includes a concert, art and crafts, children’s activities and fireworks at Dellinger Park. Recently, the Optimist Club of Cartersville made a special contribution in memory of Sharon Bickford, one of the first women to break into the all-male Club in the mid-80s. She had a 42-year career as an educator in Bartow County, and her Optimist friends will honor her memory with the scholarship presented this June. We thank our Optimist Club of Cartersville for supporting children in our community, as their mission statement says, “by providing hope and positive vision, Optimist bring out the best in youth, our communities and ourselves.”



CARTERSVILLE MEDICAL CENTER AUXILIARY – They were one of our first scholarship donors in 1983, originally named Pink Ladies Auxiliary, eventually changing to Humana/Sam Howell Memorial Hospital Auxiliary, then eventually to today’s name. While the name changed many times through the years, the criteria for this scholarship has remained the same…. To be given to a student going into a medical field of study. The first recipients of this scholarship in 1983 were Twyla Edwards, Wendy Martin, Carrie Paige, Brad Cornelius and Robert Mitchell. As stated on the Cartersville Medical Center website, “A volunteer at Cartersville Medical Center is a special person who offers his or her time to help others. Our Volunteers are important because they provide many extra services that supplement the duties of the professional staff… services that add to the comfort, care and happiness of the patient.” Next time you are in the Cartersville Medical Center, thank a volunteer for his/her service, but also thank them for the many years of scholarships they have provided to Bartow County students….34 years and counting!!!


How many of you Bartow County folks went to MISS MARILU’S PINK KINDERGARTEN???  We have copies of some of the rosters from Miss Marilu in our files all the way back to 1957 and forward, and include names we recognize…..Hoyt Hatfield, Malinda Moore, Jenny Williams, Robert Crow, Ross Whatley, Larry Pritchard, Dianne Wheeler, Steve Moore, Rick Ross, Cissy Tidwell, Marty Knight, Donna Ross, Dee Dellinger, Reid Dunn, Chip Cox, and Joe Harris….. and that’s just a few!

This month we highlight MISS MARILU MUNFORD MEMORIAL SCHOLARSHIP, started with ESF funds in 1985, and continued through a fundraising campaign headed up by Mrs. Ruth Wisebram. There are dozens of handwritten notes in our file from past students who contributed to this scholarship in 1985.  Miss Marilu began her career in 1935 and stepped down from active teaching in 1979, ending an amazing career of 44 years!  She made a significant contribution to the community and the lives of thousands of children who had their first day of formal school at the Pink Kindergarten.  Miss Marilu was a member of Beta Sigma Phi for over 40 years and was an active member of Sam Jones UMC.  She was once named “Woman of the Year” for Bartow County and “Mother of the Year” for the State of Georgia.

We are so proud here at the Etowah Scholarship Foundation to continue her legacy by being the caretaker of her scholarship and awarding it each year to a bright young student majoring in Education.

Etowah Scholarship Foundation would like to thank (and congratulate!!) one of our longest-term donors, CARTERSVILLE SERVICE LEAGUE! This organization of women has been funding scholarships through ESF since 1983.  Thirty-four years of faithfulness to the cause of helping Bartow County students further their education! The first recipients of CSL scholarships in 1983 were: Myra Collum, Vicki Billue, Kristi Lewis and Sam Smith. One of the criteria choices for each ESF donor is to follow their recipients throughout their years in college, helping them until graduation. CARTERSVILLE SERVICE LEAGUE followed several of these 1983 recipients through their college years, adding other new recipients along the way. Since 1983, we have awarded about 275 students with scholarships funded by the CARTERSVILLE SERVICE LEAGUE! We cannot thank (or brag on!) this group of women enough that have such a heart for volunteering and helping us and others in Bartow County!



We’d like to spotlight a good friend of the Etowah Scholarship Foundation, RONNIE TURNER, and the scholarship he funds in honor of his son, the CHIP TURNER MEMORIAL SCHOLARSHIP. Chip Turner, son of Ronnie Turner and Pat Turner, was tragically killed in a car accident on August 24, 2007, a devastating blow to his family, friends and his former coaches and teammates of the Cartersville High School Baseball team. Chip was passionate about Cartersville baseball! His senior year he won the “Best Attitude” award, which is given to a player who embodies the qualities of hard work, dedication, enthusiastic spirit and team pride. His jersey, No. 17, was retired in 2008 by CHS Baseball. In keeping his memory and spirit alive and in his honor, a scholarship is provided each year to the CHS baseball team member who wins the “Best Attitude” award. The scholarship is a four-year scholarship that follows the student through his career in college. Funding for this award is generated through the hard work of RONNIE TURNER and the fundraiser he fondly entitled “Chippy T. Redneck Olympics,” held annually in August. This year’s 9th annual event will be held August 26, and all proceeds will go to funding the scholarship. We hope you will all go out and support RONNIE TURNER in memorializing CHIP TURNER and continuing his enthusiastic spirit for baseball and life!