An­der­son Flo­ral Rec­og­nizes Owen

McDonald County Press - - COUNTY - Me­gan Davis

Ash­ton Bice and Dustie Akins, own­ers of An­der­son Flo­ral, know first­hand how many peo­ple work be­hind the scenes, ev­ery day, to en­sure the school day passes smoothly.

The ladies are tasked with pro­vid­ing safe trans­porta­tion to stu­dents of all ages, each morn­ing and af­ter­noon.

Last month, Bice and Akins de­cided to host a con­test in which lo­cals nom­i­nated a school staff mem­ber for a cour­tesy ar­range­ment. Once nom­i­na­tions are com­plete, con­tes­tants are nar­rowed down to five and a poll is cre­ated on the busi­ness’ Face­book page and vot­ers are en­cour­aged to “LIKE” their fa­vorite nom­i­nee.

“A lot of peo­ple who work at the school, work be­hind the scenes,” said Akins. “This opens it up to all staff — cus­to­di­ans, lunch ladies, SROs.”

More than 100 peo­ple par­tic­i­pated in the maiden event.

School Re­source Of­fi­cer Buck Owen was cho­sen as the re­cip­i­ent of Au­gust’s Staff Mem­ber Ap­pre­ci­a­tion with an over­whelm­ing vic­tory.

Owen has been an SRO for three years. He be­gan his ca­reer as a law-en­force­ment of­fi­cer in 2001 and pur­sued this pas­sion, on-and-off, for more than a decade.

“I orig­i­nally went to col­lege to be a teacher then ended up as a cop,” Owen said. “A few years ago, I thought I’d pur­sue the best of both worlds as an SRO.”

When asked his fa­vorite as­pect of his ca­reer, Owen said: “Be­ing able to work with and help kids ad­dress is­sues be­fore they are adults.”

In lieu of a flower or candy ar­range­ment, Owen chose to do­nate his prize to­ward the McDon­ald County High School Pro­ject Grad­u­a­tion — a whole­some, al­co­hol- and drug-free event each grad­u­a­tion night that pro­vides a safe haven for stu­dents.

Lo­cal busi­nesses pitched in to pro­vide gift cer­tifi­cates to later be auc­tioned and used to raise funds for Pro­ject Grad­u­a­tion. The Flick, Burger Time, Bliss­ful Bak­ing, An­der­son Flo­ral and Farmer’s Daugh­ter all con­trib­uted.

“These are my kids, any­thing I can do to help them, I will. Espe­cially for a good pro­gram like Pro­ject Grad­u­a­tion,” said Owen. “The pro­gram keeps kids safe when they would oth­er­wise be drink­ing or par­ty­ing.”

An­der­son Flo­ral will host a monthly staff ap­pre­ci­a­tion poll. Those wish­ing to nom­i­nate an em­ployee can do so online, by mes­sag­ing An­der­son Flo­ral, or by stop­ping into the flower shop any­time and sub­mit­ting a name.

ME­GAN DAVIS/MCDON­ALD COUNTY PRESS

Of­fi­cer Owen chose to do­nate his prize to­ward the McDon­ald County High School Pro­ject Grad­u­a­tion — a whole­some, al­co­hol- and drug-free event each grad­u­a­tion night that pro­vides a safe haven for stu­dents. Lo­cal busi­nesses pitched in to pro­vide gift cer­tifi­cates that will be auc­tioned off at a Pro­ject Grad­u­a­tion fundraiser.

ME­GAN DAVIS/MCDON­ALD COUNTY PRESS

School Re­source Of­fi­cer Buck Owen was cho­sen as the re­cip­i­ent of Au­gust’s Staff Mem­ber Ap­pre­ci­a­tion.

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