20 Under 40

Page 1

2 - Statesboro Herald – 20 Under 40 – April 26, 2016

The Class of 2016 Urkovia Andrews Page 2

Tray Baird Page 3

Stephen Brooks Page 4

Travis Brooks Page 5

Sam Broucek Page 5

Al Chapman Page 6

Daniel Dabbs Page 6

Ben Freakley Page 7

Holly Greeson Page 8

Christopher Hill Page 8

Mitchell Hill Page 9

Summer Hodges Page 9

Patrice Jackson Page 10

Troy Lawhorn Page 11

Heather McNeal Page 11

Suketu Patel Page 12

Wes Simmons Page 13

Alan Skipper Page 14

Brannen Smith Page 15

Nick Toussaint Page 16

Urkovia Andrews Age: 35 Title: Executive Director, Hearts and Hands Clinic Professional

Since taking the helm of our communities’ only free health clinic two years ago, Urkovia, a health-

care public relations practitioner, has grown the clinic’s services exponentially. She worked with volunteer dentists to grow the dental services by purchasing a digital dental x-ray machine and helped recruit a volunteer dental hygienist. Urkovia also expanded the medical staff to include a nurse practitioner and a registered nurse. Last year,the clinic set a record of 1,958 visits helping the clinic earn the Karl E. Peace Leadership award. She and her husband Da’Mon have two children, Kiera, 7 and Daniel, 2.


“My goal is to continue to use my education and experiences to collab-

orate with people and businesses on projects that benefit both entities. I have always had a heart for service and will continue to seek opportunities to serve. At the beginning of my professional career, I received this advice: “Work in a way that people forget your age. Service is a reminder of that advice as it is not about who does it, but how well it is done.”

Statesboro Herald – 20 Under 40 – April 26, 2016 – 3

Tray Baird Age: 38 Title: Managing Partner, Nevil Tire Professional

After a 16-year career in banking, Tray stepped away to pursue his entrepreneurial interest guiding

the family purchase of Nevil Tire and as an independent banking consultant. Since acquiring Nevil Tire, they have increased inventory, added a semi-truck alignment machine and expanded other services. He is a lifelong resident of Bulloch County, a graduate of GSU and a member of Sigma Chi. Tray is an alumni of Leadership Bulloch and is a member of BNI. Tray and his wife Susan have three children, twins, Morgan, 11, Caroline, 11 and Brody, 7.


“My future goal for Nevil Tire is to grow the business by offering new

and innovative services for our community in both individual and commercial areas. I want to make sure our employees remain highly trained in all arenas of car care, while offering the best in customer service every day. Customer satisfaction is very important to me, and I want to hold our employees and service offerings to a high standard.”

Congratulations we are so proud of you! Top 20 Under 40 2016

Summer Hodges Loove,, Jay,, Audrey, Bra annen, Addie Mama and Dadd dy Bettty and Bird

4 - Statesboro Herald – 20 Under 40 – April 26, 2016

Stephen Brooks Age: 36 Title: Owner/Broker, Brooks Financial Associates Professional

Regardless of his success, Stephen always maintains his integrity. He has led his independent

insurance firm for the past 10 years. Last year, they produced more than $1 million in annual sales. As a leader, he cares about the success of the people that work with him as much as his own. Civically he serves as a member of the Statesboro Kiwanis club, the Statesboro-Bulloch Chamber of Commerce, assistant coach of Around the Horn recreation department travel baseball team and has lead and participated in multiple mission trips to Honduras serving Connection Church. Steve and his wife, Lisa, have two children Landon, 10 and Jayden, 7.


“My #1 goal for my business is for Brooks Financial Associates to have

a positive impact on the lives of the people in our community. I plan on opening one satellite office per year, beginning in 2017. I am growing my company so that I can give back to people in need. My plans are to continue being the #1 life insurance agency in Statesboro, encompassing the widest range of products to suit the needs of every person we service.”




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Statesboro Herald – 20 Under 40 – April 26, 2016 – 5

Travis Brooks Age: 31 Title: Teacher, Langston Chapel Middle School Professional

Travis is truly an inspirational person to everyone he meets and is known for bringing new, fresh

and innovative styles and strategies into the classroom. Travis was recently named Teacher of the Year for his school, where he is lead coach of SECME (Science, Engineering, Computation and Mathematics Enrichment) team at LCMS. As an 8th grade advanced physical science instructor, his passage rate is 72.7 percent, well above the state average of 30.8 percent. Travis is an alumni of GSU for his undergraduate and masters of education.


“It is my personal desire to serve as a role model for those that live

and work within the scope of my community. I take a personal sense of pride in the work that I do and believe that one should always perform to the maximum of their capabilities. How we carry out our day to day routines and operations is a reflection of who we are and who we aspire to be. My faith and trust in God has guided me through the many facets of life for with Him nothing is impossible.”

Sam Broucek Age: 37 Title: Attorney, Edenfield, Cox, Bruce & Classens, P.C. Professional

After graduating from GSU with a construction management degree, Sam joined Ellis Wood

Contracting as a project manager for seven years and was recognized by the Real Estate & Construction Review and the Building of America for his work on the GSU RAC expansion. He also served as an adjunct professor at GSU before entering law school at Mercer University, continuing his family’s legacy. Sam is a graduate of the YLD Leadership Academy, sponsored by the Young Lawyers Division of the State Bar of Georgia, and is an alumnus of Leadership Bulloch. Beyond his passion on driving performance, Sam is a natural leader who fights hard for his beliefs.


“On a daily basis I see many people facing challenges, whether at work

or while participating in volunteer experiences here in Statesboro. When I help others, I know I make a positive impact on the growth and development of our community. I look forward to continuing to stay involved with our community through my law practice and community service. I want to ensure Statesboro is a place my children will be blessed to make their home.”

6 - Statesboro Herald – 20 Under 40 – April 26, 2016

Al Chapman Age: 37 Title: Owner, Gnat’s Landing Professional

Al is well known for turning around a struggling restaurant, Gnat’s Landing, and making it one of the

most popular restaurant and bars in the area. His formal education includes a degree from Full Sail College in lighting, sound and studio design. Al helped open Gnat’s 10 years ago and purchased the restaurant eight years ago. One of the most interesting successes of Gnat’s is its ability to truly become a popular destination for locals and students alike. Al and his wife, Chrissy, have one child, Landon, 2.


“From a personal life perspective, I see myself continuing to make the

most of each day I am given with my family and loved ones. My parents blessed me by teaching me the importance of hard work, love, loyalty and giving without the expectation of something in return. Professionally speaking, I see Gnats Landing continuing to grow alongside the city of Statesboro, as we constantly work toward giving our existing customer base the personal attention, quality, appreciation and experience they expect and deserve.”

Daniel Dabbs Age: 34 Title: Founder and CEO, BattlBox Professional

At 24, Daniel became a business owner when he purchased Statesboro’s Varsity Ink. Three years

later, Varsity Ink had purchased two competitors and expanded into larger facilities in both Statesboro and a second location in Milledgeville. He created and manufactured his own t-shirt brand, Georgia Peaches & Pines Apparel Company, that is sold in retail stores across the state. Last year, Daniel launched Battlbox, LLC, a monthly subscription box of hand-picked survival and tactical gear. The wildly successful company exceeded $5 million in sales the first year of operation and is projected to top $12 million in annual sales in 2016.


“While we plan on continuing to make improvements with BattlBox such

as hiring more staff and the construction of new offices, I intend to launch other subscription boxes over the next few months by building international brands and subscriptions based on what we have learned from BattlBox’s success. There is a lot of opportunity for subscription based businesses and we hope to continually make our mark on the e-commerce industry.”

Statesboro Herald – 20 Under 40 – April 26, 2016 – 7

Ben Freakley Age: 37 Title: General Manager, Tormenta FC Professional

Most recently, Ben took the position of general manager of Tormenta FC, helping bring a Premiere

Development League professional soccer team to Statesboro, which he describes as his dream job. After playing soccer for GSU he became a NCAA Division I coach and coached at the collegiate, Olympic development and youth levels for 13 before serving as a performance psychology consultant for the 1/75 Ranger Battalion – Special Operations Forces. In 2013, he founded Ready.Set.Resillient Performance consulting encouraging positive routines that yield positive results. Ben is married to Melissa and they have two children, Ben Freakley III, 7, and Connor Freakley, 6.


“I want to continue to be a positive influence at home, work and in the


community by modeling positivity, optimism and initiative. I want to win a PDL Championship with Tormenta FC and have a Tormenta FC player drafted to the MLS. Utilize Tormenta FC as a vehicle for leadership and character development throughout the region by offering ways for players to get involved in the community through soccer.”

Congratulations Summer! Ben Freakley

Top 20 Under 40 2016

for being named one of Statesboro Herald’s


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8 - Statesboro Herald – 20 Under 40 – April 26, 2016

Holly Greeson Age: 36 Title: Counselor, Bulloch Academy Professional

Holly began her career as a county extension agent with the 4-H club in Ringgold, Georgia, and then

served as a foster care counselor with East Georgia Counseling before accepting a position at Bulloch Academy. As a school counselor at BA for the past nine years, Holly is responsible for providing individual and group counseling, career development, social/personal development, college counseling for students pre-K through 12th grade. Holly is known for her care and concern of every student. Holly and her husband, Josh, have two children, Elle, 10, and Hannah Grace, 6.


“My professional goal is to serve the students and families of Bulloch

Academy in a way that creates a positive impact on our community and anywhere our graduates choose to live. I feel that developing a heart for service and empowering young leaders is crucial in growing a strong community. I will also continue to focus personal service efforts through my involvement in a variety of local organizations in hopes that we can all work together to make Statesboro and Bulloch County a great place to live.”

Christopher Hill Age: 38 Title: Warden, Bulloch County Correctional Institute Professional

Christopher is motivated to improve the community by educating at risk youth and adults and men-

toring them in their efforts to become responsible, productive citizens. In his position as warden of B.C.C.I., he is working diligently to reduce prison recidivism by providing education and job skills training they can use upon release. He currently serves as the vice president of the Georgia Prison Wardens Association. Christopher is married to Tawana and they have three children, Tayana, 16, Chris Jr., 14, and Chandler, 20 months.


“My goal for the future is to continue to give back to the community in

a number of ways. I would like to expand my scope of mentorship to all teens, not just at-risk youth. I would also offer ex-offenders the opportunity to learn valuable trades and/or skills upon their release in order to reduce recidivism and to assist them in becoming productive citizens for their benefit, their families and community.”

Statesboro Herald – 20 Under 40 – April 26, 2016 – 9

Mitchell Hill Age: 33 Title: Partner, Lee, Hill & Johnston Insurers Professional

Mitchell is a native of Bulloch County, a graduate of Bulloch Academy and UGA. He began his career

in banking before joining Lee, Hill and Johnston Insurers. He is a “rising star” in the insurance profession in southeast Georgia. Everyone who knows him and works with him will tell you how he has a heart of gold. His concern for his community, co-workers and family drives him to succeed in every way. He is a former board member of the Statesboro Boys and Girls Club, member of the Statesboro Rotary Club, serves as sponsor and volunteer for the Schenkel Golf Tournament, member of the Statesboro Bulldog Club and attends Statesboro First United Methodist Church. Mitchell is married to Meg Hill.


“I want to see that Statesboro and Bulloch County remain a wonderful

city and county to raise a family and grow a business. This community was very family driven when I grew up here and I’d like to see that continue. I think that it is imperative for a community to be centered on family in order to be successful.”

Summer Hodges Age: 37 Title: Design Consultant, L.A. Waters Furniture Professional

Summer has a passion for serving others. Through her work in interior design, she works with a

diverse client group in making their homes and offices inviting and a place of comfort. Her client list includes GSU, OTC, many churches and professional offices along with some of the most desirable homes in Bulloch County. Summer is one of the most sought after designers in our market. Her position at L.A. Waters Furniture gives her unique insight and resources when designing projects for her clients. She is a member of Benefit the Boro and attends First United Methodist Church. Summer and her husband, Jay, have three children Audrey, 14, Brannen, 13 and Addie, 7.


“As a little girl, I knew decorating and design was my passion. I find it

rewarding and fulfilling to help clients reach the element of design they desire while making the best use of their resources. My goal each day is to be thankful for my many blessings and always treat others fairly. I believe when these rules are executed, everything else in life falls into place. There is no greater reward than using my talents and gifts to serve others.”

10 - Statesboro Herald – 20 Under 40 – April 26, 2016

Patrice Jackson Age: 35 Title: Dean of Students, Georgia Southern University Professional

Patrice is the exact role model we should want for all employees and for our children. As Georgia

Southern’s first female Dean of Students, she is hard working, kind and lives out daily a strong work ethic and caring attitude. She is a driving force on the GSU campus to educate students to utilize their voices in intelligent, ethical and civil ways, no matter the situation. Patrice established Georgia Southern V.A.L.U.E.S. – Voices, Accountability, Lasting Traditions, Unity, Ethical Behavior and Scholarship; a civility campaign that encourages students to make responsible decisions. Patrice is married to the Reverend Edward Jackson and they have one child, Daiyonah, 15.


“My short term goal is to complete my doctor of education degree at

Georgia Southern by December 2016. Concerning long term goals, two foundational principles have shaped my life: the Gospel of Jesus Christ and the power of education. I plan to spend the rest of my life teaching and reaching through those principles.”

Congratulations SAM!

Top 20 Un er 40 2016 6

C Holly! Edenfield, Cox, Bruce & Classens, P.C. Attorneys At LAw

115 Savannah Avenue, Statesboro, GA 30458

(912) 764-8600 www.edenfieldlaw.com

From Your Friends at Bulloch Academy

Statesboro Herald – 20 Under 40 – April 26, 2016 – 11

Troy Lawhorn Age: 39 Title: Owner, Statesboro Oral Surgery Professional

Dr. Lawhorn grew up in Eastman, Georgia and received his undergraduate from Augusta State

University, graduating magna cum laude. He received his doctorate of dental medicine from the Medical College of Georgia. He completed his residency in Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery at the University of Tennessee and served as chief resident in 2007. After working in the field for several years, he opened his private practice, Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery in Statesboro in 2012. He volunteers with the Hearts and Hands Clinic and the Georgia Baptist Mobile Health Ministry. Dr. Lawhorn and his wife, Sarah, are members of First Baptist Church and have two children, Stella 5, and Ivan, 2.


“My future goals can be summed up in four ways. I plan to continue

strengthening my personal relationship with Jesus. I desire to be the best husband and father to my family. I want to keep providing the citizens of Statesboro, Bulloch County and the surrounding communities with their oral surgery needs. And last but not least, I am honored and blessed to continue giving back to our great community.”

Heather McNeal Age: 36 Title: Clerk of Court, Bulloch County Professional

Heather is a lifelong resident of Bulloch County, still living on her family farm, where she grew up.

She began working in the court system while attending GSU, in the same office she now oversees. Her path to becoming clerk of court included working in the State Court and the DUI Court and as human resource director for Bulloch County, before being elected as clerk of court for Bulloch County. She attends Bethel Missionary Baptist Church. Heather and her husband Ryan have one child Charlie, 5.


“As I look into the future, I am excited about the many paths that are in

front of me. I have been fortunate enough to directly serve the people of Statesboro and Bulloch County during my entire professional career. I have a deep dedication and commitment to this community that I strive each day to uphold and respect. Each day brings new and interesting challenges and I am honored to be a part of such a striving, positive and engaging community.”

12 - Statesboro Herald – 20 Under 40 – April 26, 2016

Suketu Patel Age: 37 Title: Owner, East Georgia Center for Oral & Facial Surgery Professional

Dr. Suketu Patel attended the University of Michigan, where he earned his B.S. degree in cell and

molecular biology. He completed his residency training in oral and maxillofacial surgery at the University of Pennsylvania Health System and the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia. Dr. Patel is a diplomate of the American Board of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery and a Fellow of the American Association of Oral & Maxillofacial Surgeons. He acquired Dr. Rod Uribe’s practice three years ago and has continued to grow the practice. Suk is married to Anjali and they have two children, Rayan, 4, and Lara, 2.


“My goal is to be the best husband, father, friend and surgeon I can

be. I am so fortunate to have incredible people in my lives: a loving family, loyal friends, knowledgeable mentors and colleagues, bright and hardworking co-workers and appreciative patients. I am motivated daily by these individuals, and I hope I am able to influence them the way they inspire me. I will continue to be supportive of the great Statesboro community that has been so welcoming to my family and me.”

Congratulations! One of Bulloch County’s Top 20 under 40, is our very own

Wes Simmons! The staff and family of Troy M. Lawhorn, DMD

Board Certified Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeon

would like to


Stop by the Market District and bank with Wes!

Dr. Lawhorn on being selected as one of Bulloch County’s top

20 under 40! www.Statesboro-OralSurgery.com | (912) 764–4495 4451 Country Club Road, Suite B, Statesboro, GA 30458

623.2500 | www.bullochfirst.com M A R K E T D I S T R I C T • S TAT E S B O R O

Statesboro Herald – 20 Under 40 – April 26, 2016 – 13

Wes Simmons Age: 33 Title: Vice President, Bulloch First Professional

Since graduating from UGA, Wes has been involved in commercial development and commercial

banking in Southeast Georgia. He quickly became assistant vice president with a regional bank at their Statesboro location and he was recently named vice president at Bulloch First, helping start a new bank in Statesboro. Civically, he is a graduate of Leadership Bulloch, past board member of the Boys and Girls Club, member of the Downtown Rotary Club and serves on the board of Home Builders of Statesboro. Wes and his wife, Haley, have just become parents with the birth of Marylee Greta, 16 weeks.


“My goal is to work hard every day to be a better Christian, husband,

father, banker and community servant. I have truly been blessed with a great family, motivated co-workers and wonderful customers. I also have the privilege of living in the best community in the Southeast – Statesboro and Bulloch County. I hope to assist in the growth of Bulloch First into a strong financial institution known for honesty, integrity, quality banking products, great customer service and community involvement.”

Congratulations Dr. Patel, We Love You & are so Proud of Your Many Accomplishments. Your Team at East Georgia Center for Oral & Facial Surgery • 613 East Grady Street, Statesboro, GA • 6 Medical Office Way, Swainsboro, GA • 912-764-5435 • www.eastgeorgiaoralsurgery.com

14 - Statesboro Herald – 20 Under 40 – April 26, 2016

Alan Skipper Age: 33 Title: Chief Nursing Officer/Co-Owner, Southern Manor Professional

In addition to working as a family nurse practitioner at the Hearts and Hands Clinic and teaching at

GSU, Alan is also an entrepreneur. He and Ralph Cowart own Southern Manor and Lakeview Manor (in Springfield) senior living communities. They recently acquired Gentilly Gardens. They are in the process of renovating the facility and have rebranded it as The Gardens at Southern Manor. Alan is currently pursuing his doctor of nursing practice degree at the University of Alabama. Civically, Alan is active in the Alzheimer’s Association, Relay for Life and the Statesboro-Bulloch Chamber of Commerce. He is a member of Sigma Theta Tau, a national nursing society which only admits the top 5 percent of nurses, and he serves as V.P. of the Mu Kappa chapter at GSU.


“In the next year, I look forward to finishing up my doctorate of nurs-

ing practice degree. I am also excited about helping our senior living communities grow as we strive for new and innovative ways to serve the seniors in Bulloch and surrounding counties.”

Congratulations to Patrice Buckner Jackson, Dean of Students on being named a 20 Under 40 winner.

Statesboro Herald – 20 Under 40 – April 26, 2016 – 15

Brannen Smith Age: 34 Title: Commercial Banking Vice President, Sea Island Bank Professional

Brannen is a native of Bulloch County and is dedicated to this community. He began his banking

career at Sea Island Bank after graduating from UGA. He started in the loan department, before becoming a credit analyst. Based on his outstanding performance, Brannen was promoted to vice president. Civically, he is a graduate of Leadership Bulloch and is currently serving as president of the Alumni Association. In 2015 he was a Graduate of Distinction from the Georgia Banking School. Brannen is married to Haley and they have two children, Scarlett, 3, and Emmaline, 4 months.


“This community is unlike any other out there. We are family, friends

and neighbors. We support each other, comfort each other and congratulate each other every day. My future goals are to be able to continue to live, work and raise my family here and in doing so, attempt to give back to this community. It excites me to know my two little girls will grow up and call Statesboro home like their daddy and each day I know I must do what I can to make this a better place for them.”

Here’s to you. Brannen Smith is respected for his leadership and service, with our company and the community organizations he serves. We are proud to call this valued team member part of our family and congratulate him for his recognition as one of Statesboro Herald’s “20 under 40”. While we are pleased with the news of this prestigious and well-deserved honor, we’re certainly not surprised. seaislandbank.com | 912.489.8661 Brannen Smith, Commercial Banker/Vice President, Sea Island Bank Banking products are provided by Synovus Bank, Member FDIC. Divisions of Synovus Bank operate under multiple trade names across the Southeast.

16 - Statesboro Herald – 20 Under 40 – April 26, 2016

Nick Toussaint Age: 33 Title: Owner, Magnolia Women’s Healthcare Professional

Dr. Toussaint is one of Statesboro’s newest OB/GYNs. His wife, Bess, a native of Statesboro, intro-

duced him to the warmth of our community. He opened Magnolia Women’s Healthcare two years ago with a goal of delivering patient-centered, quality-focused women’s healthcare to our community. He is a graduate of the Medical University of South Carolina. Dr. Toussaint considers the most fundamental aspect of patient care to be the meaningful relationships built between a patient and their physician. By creating authentic physician-patient partnerships, he works to achieve mutual goals with his patients, whether it be the safe and timely delivery of a healthy baby, or simply an overall healthier lifestyle.


“At Magnolia Women’s Healthcare we are blessed to have the opportunity

to serve the community of Statesboro and surrounding counties. By bringing the latest in evidence-based medicine and surgical techniques, we look forward to growing and expanding the culture of patient-focused medical care. I am extremely proud of the family we have made here at Magnolia and excited for what the future brings.”

Congratulations Mitchell Hill - “Twenty Under 40”

Lee, Hill & Johnston


The Insurance People. Since 1963.

w w w . l h j i n s . c o m 212 Savannah Avenue 912.764.6896 ph