Fort Oglethorpe Kiwanis Club announces 2018 honorees: Emerson Russell and Susan Wells
The Kiwanis Club of Fort Oglethorpe’s Distinguished Service Awards luncheon will celebrate the event’s 11th anniversary on May 2 by recognizing Catoosa County businessman Emerson Russell and Walker County educator Susan Wells.
The Distinguished Service Award recognizes the outstanding career, community and civic contributions made by the honorees and the positive impact they have on bettering the community. Kiwanis is an international service organization dedicated to helping change the world one child and one community at a time.
“The beauty of the Distinguished Service Award is that we bring the community together to celebrate the honorees and recognize their accomplishments. It really is a feel-good event that our club members and guests look forward to,” club president Dan Nichols said.
Emerson Russell is a native Chattanoogan who has worked diligently to build a national company that employs over 5,000 people and operates in 35 states. Emerson is the CEO of ERMC which started in 1972 as Russell Security and grew through the years to include various facility services including janitorial, maintenance and landscaping services at over 200 locations nationwide in the retail, commercial and aviation industries.
A consummate entrepreneur, Emerson also owns and operates approximately 30 additional businesses. Emerson has maintained his religious beliefs and background and strongly believes in giving back to the community that has given so much to him. Emerson finds time to actively serve on the Tennessee Workforce Investment Board, the SE TN Development District Susan Wells
Board, Salvation Army, American Heart Association, TN Private Protection Services Board, The Shriners, the Masons, The Southeastern Legal Foundation Board and the Chambers of Commerce for Chattanooga and for Catoosa County, GA, The Rotary Club, Siskin Children’s Institute. Emerson is also a family man with 5 children, 13 grandchildren and 7 great grandchildren.
Susan Wells is the daughter of Bob and Jean McCoy and was born and raised in the height of Rossville’s economic boom. Susan is a graduate of Rossville High School and earned a Bachelors in Education from the University of Georgia and her Master’s in Education from the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga. She and husband David have been married for thirty-seven years. They are the proud parents of twin daughters, Dr. Katie Wells and Elizabeth Wells.
While working as a teacher and coach at Osburn Elementary, and Rossville High School, she earned her Education Specialist degree from Jacksonville State University. Susan’s education career next led her into administration where she went on to become vice principal at Chattanooga Valley Elementary which provided the stepping stone to her first head principal position at Fortune Grammar School. She spent 5 years at Fortune and left there to open the new Rossville Elementary. She finished her administrative career in Walker County as the principal of Chattanooga Valley Elementary. Susan again advanced her career in upper level administration in the Catoosa County School System as the Director of Student Services for 13 more years until her retirement.
Retirement wasn’t quite ready for Susan nor was Susan quite ready for retirement. She later ran for the Walker County School Board, won, and served as Chair. Susan was offered and accepted the position of the Coordinator of Walker County Family Connection, which she currently holds and has held for twelve years.
Susan has been a lifelong member of Simpson United Methodist Church, and is presently a Sunday School Teacher. Throughout her life, she has been a fierce advocate for families and children in Northwest GA. Her diverse volunteerism stretches over forty years.
The Distinguished Service Award luncheon conducts a silent auction with each honoree selecting a favorite charity to receive 50% of the funds raised by the donated items. Russell has selected the Hunter Worley Foundation and Wells has selected Rossville Summer Academy as their silent auction beneficiary.
Along with recognizing the honorees and raising money for their selected charity and numerous Kiwanis programs, the luncheon allows the club to showcase the international service mission of Kiwanis International and the local programs and projects that are sponsored by the club. Individual tickets are $35 each, corporate table for eight is $350. Reservations are needed to attend. Contact Chris McKeever by phone at 706-8612860 or at email@example.com.