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Cobb Teachers of the Year

Scenes from Thursday’s Handprint Unveiling Ceremony at The Earl and Rachel Smith Strand Theatre in Marietta, GA. (Photo: Karl L. Moore/Mooreshots LLC)
Pictured L-R: Cobb County Schools Superintendent Chris Ragsdale, Teacher of the Year Elizabeth Goff, Cobb Chamber CEO Sharon Mason, Teacher of the Year Candace Torrence, and Marietta City Schools Superintendent Grant Rivera.(Photo: Karl L. Moore/Mooreshots LLC)

The Cobb Chamber recently celebrated the 34th year of Give Our Schools a Hand (GOSH). A salute to education in Cobb County, GOSH events bring educators, students, parents, businesses, and community leaders together to honor education through three distinctive events: the Handprint Unveiling Ceremony, and the Teacher of the Year Breakfast and Pep Rally.

The two honored teachers this year — Marietta City Schools (MCS) Teacher of the Year, Candace Torrence, and Cobb County School District Teacher of the Year, Elizabeth Goff from Bells Ferry Elementary, left their handprint legacies on the Teacher Walk of Honor, located on the Marietta Square.

Torrence teaches gifted students (MILE) in all grades at A.L. Burruss Elementary. In her 13th year as an educator, Torrence a deep passion for building relationships with students and families, as well as pushing students to their maximum potential. She is an active member of the Marietta community, serving as her school’s PAGE rep, Drama and Beta Club sponsors, and on the PTA and SGT.

Her biggest inspirations come from her grandmother, Ezella Holcomb, and aunt, Annie L. Ruggs. Her grandmother gave her the gift of giving back to her community and always being there to lend a hand. Her aunt taught her how to conduct herself as a “lady” and that a teacher’s impact goes beyond the classroom walls.

Dr. Elizabeth Goff is an ESOL teacher. She is passionate about teaching her multilingual learners in a school that serves families from 29 language backgrounds. She heads the committee that organizes the Celebration of Cultures event, drawing hundreds in attendance each year. Along with the use of strong instructional practices, instilling habits of persistence, resilience, and confidence in her remarkable students is a priority for Dr. Goff daily.

Through the years, the Give Our Schools a Hand (GOSH) program has motivated the community to take an active role in Cobb’s public school systems and has attracted attention to the quality of education in Cobb County. Dating back to 1988, GOSH has become one of the largest events honoring local educators, celebrating more than 130 teachers here in Cobb County.

GOSH wishes to thank this year’s sponsors: The City of Marietta; K. Mike Whittle Unique Floral Designs, Inc.; and The Earl and Rachel Smith Strand Theatre.

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