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Ten at The Top announces final Unsung Hero nominees for Greenville County

In advance of their upcoming Celebrating Upstate Unsung Heroes virtual event, Ten at the Top [TATT] announced they have received over 130 nominations for unsung heroes from across the ten-county Upstate region. In place of their annual Celebrating Successes Luncheon, this virtual event will be held on November 18th to recognize the many Upstate citizens who have worked tirelessly during the COVID-19 pandemic to keep their surrounding communities healthy and safe.

Greenville county alone received forty-six unique nominations for community members representing organizations and businesses across various industries. Out of these forty-six nominees, one finalist will be selected to represent Greenville county at the event on Wednesday, November 18th beginning at 11:00 AM.

Below is a comprehensive list of the nominees for Greenville County:

  • Josh Albin, Assistant Principal at Bryson Elementary School

  • Russell Alexander, Assistant Fire Chief for the City of Fountain Inn

  • Rachelle Andino, Innovation Lab Instructor at Monaview Elementary School

  • Michael Black, Custodian at Brushy Creek Elementary School

  • Faculty & Staff of Bright Horizons Children’s Center/Greenville Memorial Childcare Center

  • Teri Brinkman, Director of Community Engagement for Greenville County Schools

  • Terence Brister, Founder, Unified Self Defense and City Policeman, Greenville Police Department

  • Jamie Cato, Truck Driver for McLane Company

  • Kay Clifton, Financial Advisor at Edward Jones

  • Todd Cook, Plant Engineer at Sterling School

  • Dr. Deanna Cotter, Chief Medical Officer at New Horizon Family Health Services

  • Timbre Cruz, Store Worker at BI-LO Grocery

  • Leasa Dacus, Instructional Coach for Greenville County Schools

  • Sean Dogan, Interim CEO at Urban League of the Upstate

  • Judy Dyer, RN at Phoenix Center

  • Dina Estrada, Programs & Outreach Coordinator at Hispanic Alliance

  • Ushamani (Kitty) Fleetwood, Director of Rehab at Skylyn Pacifica

  • Kate French, Secretary for Greenville Country Democratic Party & Outreach and Grants Coordinator for Camperdown Academy

  • Ann Finch, Custodian at Brushy Creek Elementary School

  • Jessica Gallman, Director of Project & Change Management at United Community Bank

  • Christina Garter, Clinical Nurse Educator at Prisma Health

  • Keri Geary, Outreach Director at Grace Church

  • Shannon Hudson, 9Round Fitness

  • Patricia Idarrago-Quiros, K4 Aide at Simpsonville Elementary School

  • Kourtney Jones, ICU Registered Nurse at Bon Secours St. Francis Health System

  • Laura King, Nurse Educator at New Horizon Family Health Services

  • Erike Klimkowski, Front Office Clerk at Eastside High School

  • Rev. Bridget Kokolis, Minister to Families at Augusta Road Baptist Church

  • Marina Lewis, Social Worker at Mauldin High School

  • Joey Loman of Synergy Mill

  • Charmain Madison, Special Education Teacher at Simpsonville Elementary School

  • John McCall, Lead Technician at Fusion Audio & Video

  • Staff of Meals on Wheels of Greenville County

  • Shannon Miller, Special Education Teacher at Simpsonville Elementary School

  • Kitty Morgan, Paratransit Coordinator at Greenlink

  • Bob Morris, President of the Community Foundation of Greenville

  • Alan Max Myers, Assistant Fire Chief at Berea Fire Department

  • Jessica Owens, Director of Adult Services at The Phoenix Center

  • Katy Pugh Smith, Executive Director of Piedmont Health Foundation & Greenville Partnership for Philanthropy

  • Amanda Sopko, 4th Grade Virtual Teacher for Greenville County Schools

  • Mende Taylor, Food Services Director at Hollis Academy

  • Paula Valencia of Greenville County Schools

  • Samantha Wallace, Director of Business Development at Think Up Consulting

  • Laura Wedell-Jenkins, Volunteer at Fountain Inn Community Police Fund

  • Kristen Wellbaum, Food & Nutrition Services Manager at Sterling School

  • Susan Whitmire, 1st Grade Teacher at Stone Academy

“The selfless work of unsung heroes who have remained committed and strong for their communities during a time of uncertainty has been critical to our communities and we felt worthy of special recognition,” said Dean Hybl, Executive Director of Ten at the Top. “As an organization that serves as a regional connector, we thought it was an appropriate time to pivot from past traditions for this annual event and shine a light upon the many individuals who have kept our Upstate region together during this pandemic.”

The virtual event is free, though advance registration is requested through Eventbrite and a special “event gift” will be sent to all who register by Wednesday, November 11th. In lieu of an admission charge, attendees are encouraged to make a donation to help Ten at the Top continue its mission across the Upstate and to help say “thank you” to the county Unsung Heroes. Contributions will be divided between Ten at the Top general organizational support, the TATT Ignition Fund for providing long-term impact across the Upstate, and a “thank you” stipend to the Unsung Heroes that will be honored at this event.

To learn more about Ten at the Top and their Celebrating Upstate Unsung Heroes Virtual Event, please visit


Comprised of public, private and civic leaders across the ten-county Upstate South Carolina Region, Ten at the Top was created to build regional trust and consensus through data-driven research and regular convening of leaders and citizens to address key issues facing the region. Ten at the Top works with regional partners to encourage quality growth and enhance the economic vitality, natural and cultural resources and quality of life for Upstate residents both today and as the region continues to grow.

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