Meet the Presidents

Compiled by Julia Sharp | Edited by Lucy Morris

Student presidents are recognized as individuals gifted with vision who can lead their peers to a bigger and brighter future. They are held to the highest standard of integrity, and they juggle extra responsibilities all while making sure they aren’t late to class. The 31 young men and women here are just some of the many chosen by their peers to represent their student bodies in the Chattanooga area. Accomplished in academics, athletics, and community service, they’re busy spearheading endeavors that will echo throughout the halls of their high schools and beyond.

Jada Lackey  | East Ridge High School, Student Body President

 

Impact you want to make on the world?  To change lives for the better. I’d like to do what I can to just make someone’s day, whatever it takes. Lessons learned from leadership? That you will never be able to please everyone. No matter what, someone will have a complaint about something you do, so just work hard at what you do and do it well. Person you admire most? My father, Jerry Lackey. He is the reason I work so hard and do what I do. He has shown me what it’s like to put all you have into something for the better. Where would you travel? To Honduras. I’ve always wanted to go there on a mission trip and learn new things while helping the people who live there. What do you want to accomplish in life? To be happy, to become successful, and to make my dad proud.

Casey Stewart  | Red Bank High School, Student Body President

 

Favorite extracurricular activity? Playing my favorite sport, softball. It has taught me responsibility and discipline. Any education/career goals? Continue my education at a four-year university with the goal of becoming a sports trainer/physical therapist. Lessons learned from leadership? Sometimes as a leader, you can be influenced by what others want and by their personal feelings on an issue; however, in the end, making the right choice, which will ultimately benefit the majority, is a sign of true leadership. Person you admire most? My mother. She has shown me strength, love, compassion, and even discipline when I needed it. I will forever admire her. Where would you travel? Amsterdam. Getting to visit the place where Anne Frank lived, knowing what she went through at such a young age and being aware of the fact that it could have been me, would be an amazing and emotional experience that I would never forget.

Andres Salas  | Howard High School, Student Government Association President 

 

Proudest accomplishment?  Being named National BETA Club President and being selected for the UTK BETS Program for high school seniors. Favorite extracurricular activity? Debate team. Impact you want to make on the world? To show people that you don’t need to be talented nor full of skill in order to become who you want to be. Any education/career goals? Obtain a doctoral degree. Person you admire most? Ron Paul, because he has always fought for our personal liberty. That’s someone I would love to be or be seen as. Where would you travel? Europe and Asia. Traveling also helps you gain experience, and the more you travel, the more you open your mind. What do you want to accomplish in life? Graduate with my bachelor’s degree in political science, attend law school, and make the world a better place.

Keriann Lane  | Ooltewah High School, Senior Class President

 

Proudest accomplishment?  Being elected president four years in a row. I’ve been able to accomplish a lot as a voice between the student body and administration. Impact you want to make on the world? To leave my mark by touching as many people as I can through quality literature. I believe one book can change anyone’s life. Any education/career goals?  Obtain a master’s degree in business and English with a focus on creative writing, then go on to be a publisher for young adult novels. Lessons learned from leadership? How to take setbacks in stride, fix the problem, and keep going. Person you admire most? My mother, because I’ve watched her get her master’s degree for her dream job while working full-time and taking care of her family. Where would you travel?  Pompeii. I read a Magic Tree House book about it in the second grade, and have been slightly obsessed ever since.

Hunter Shamblin  | Walker Valley High School, Student Body President

 

Favorite extracurricular activity? Baseball. I love the game and the life lessons that go along with it! Impact you want to make on the world? To share the love of God with others. Any education/career goals? To major in political science, and minor in theology. I would love to go into politics and business. I hope I will always be driven to step up and lead my peers and fellow citizens. Lessons learned from leadership? That no matter what pressure you’re facing, don’t ever turn your back on your morals or the people who trusted you enough to vote for you. What do you want to accomplish in life? To finish strong with my athletic career and push myself to be the best player I can be, to get married and have children, and to hold public office one day. Who knows, I might even run for President!

Garrison Wheeler  | Signal Mountain High School, Student Body President

 

Proudest accomplishment?  I have had the privilege of teaching hundreds of kids how to swim and compete and ultimately win multiple regional championships. Any education/career goals? To attend a smaller D1 university where I will be able to continue my career in cross country, track, and student government. Lessons learned from leadership? As Napoleon Bonaparte said, “A leader is a dealer in hope.” In times of hardship, people look to the leader for answers. Where would you travel? Chamonix, France. The city holds the largest and most competitive ultra-running race in the world. What do you want to accomplish in life? To win a state cross country title, to gain the mental and physical capacity to be a successful ultra-runner and complete in the Ultra Trail du Mont Blanc race, and to hold political office and stabilize politics in the United States.

Matthew Davis  | Baylor School, Chair of the Honor Council

 

Proudest accomplishment?  Being elected chair of the Baylor Honor Council and winning the Jumonville Award. Impact you want to make on the world? To one day be in a position to restore confidence in how the public views elected officials and the federal government as a whole. Lessons learned from leadership? The importance of direct communication. Often, disagreements arise because of miscommunication. If the leader effectively communicates with everyone affected in a situation, then everyone feels valued. Person you admire most? My parents. They live busy lives and are swamped with work, but no matter what, they dedicate time to their kids. They model a balanced life, and I want to live the same way. What do you want to accomplish in life? To run for public office, to work for the United Nations or as a U.S. ambassador to a foreign country, and to serve as a judge.

Macey Orman  | Soddy Daisy High School, Student Body President

 

Favorite extracurricular activity?  Playing keyboard, bass, and singing in the worship band at Dallas Bay Church. Impact you want to make on the world? If I can let just one person know just how much they are loved by the Father, then that has made an impact for eternity. Any education/career goals? To attend either Lee University or Belmont University to become a nurse and later a nurse practitioner. Lessons learned from leadership? I cannot do it all on my own. It’s tough at times to relinquish control, but I have learned that in order for something to be great, it has to be a team effort. Where would you travel? Wherever God opens a door to go and spread His word, I would go in a heartbeat. What do you want to accomplish in life? To be on Jeopardy, to swim in a shark cage, and to love fearlessly.

Eden Henderson  | Boyd Buchanan School, Student Body Co-president

 

Proudest accomplishment? When I climbed a mountain this summer with a group of my closest friends. I learned I am capable of so much more than I thought. Impact you want to make on the world? To make sure every person I meet feels like they are loved and have a purpose. I want to be someone who encourages others and lifts others up. Any education/career goals? I want to attend college at Harding University in Searcy, Arkansas, and obtain a degree in youth and family counseling and minor in education. Lessons learned from leadership? That leadership takes a lot of responsibility, and a lot of leadership roles take place behind the scenes. Where would you travel? Rome. I would love to experience the history and the culture in a hands-on way. What do you want to accomplish in life? To spend a year in a foreign country, become a youth minister, and learn how to be independent.

Lexis Parks  | Brainerd High School, Class President

 

Proudest accomplishment?  Winning $2,500 in a youth entrepreneurship competition. I learned the importance of being on a team, and we were unstoppable. Favorite extracurricular activity? Track. Impact you want to make on the world? To show the world that everyone has the same 24 hours as the next person. With hard work, you can accomplish anything. Any education/career goals? Major in business management and communications and own my own business involving broadcasting. Lessons learned from leadership? Even small tasks can impact others in a huge way. Person you admire most? Malala Yousafzai, because she wanted a better education. What do you want to accomplish in life? Become the next Oprah Winfrey, graduate from college, and give back to my community and show them that reaching your dreams is achievable.

Taniya Nichols  | Tyner Academy, Senior Class President

 

Proudest accomplishment?  Being able to have a voice and get changes made to the dress code. Favorite extracurricular activity? Cheerleading. Impact you want to make on the world?  To find or contribute to a cure for Alzheimer’s. Any education/career goals? Graduate from the University of Tennessee at Knoxville with a bachelor’s degree in chemistry or biology, then graduate from medical school and start my career as a neurologist. Lessons learned from leadership? To be patient with others and to remain humble. Your spot is never secure, and you could lose your position way easier than you got it. Person you admire most? My mother because she is the most forgiving and loving person I know. I’ve watched her grow just as she has watched me. What do you want to accomplish in life? Open up a private practice, impact someone else’s life, and become the motivator that someone else needs.

Blythe May  | Girls Preparatory School, Student Council President

 

Proudest accomplishment?  I am incredibly proud to be the kind of person and leader that our student body can put their faith in. Lessons learned from leadership? Be kind. Be supportive. Be a friend. Person you admire most? My brother. He has a really quiet kindness, he loves people so much, and has an incredible sense of loyalty. He has always supported me and believed that I was strong and capable, even when I did not agree. Where would you travel? What I want most is to experience a diverse range of cultures and meet and get to know as many people as I can. What do you want to accomplish in life? My biggest goal in life is to raise children who love people deeply and recognize the need for justice and equality. Other than that, I plan to live a life of purpose and to always maintain my idealism.

Dylan Ford  | Collegedale Academy, Student Association President

 

Proudest accomplishment? Receiving the Billy McKee Scholarship for outstanding character, leadership, and integrity. Favorite extracurricular activity? Gymnastics. Impact you want to make on the world? To simply make a difference for the better, in any or many possible ways. Any education/career goals? Achieve a BS in nursing and then progress to becoming a physician’s assistant. Lessons learned from leadership? I’ve learned the best way to lead is through serving. Person you admire most? My grandpa because he has a wealth of knowledge and always talks with a purpose and never talks just to talk. Where would you travel?  I would love to travel to the Galápagos Islands for a mission trip and scuba diving. What do you want to accomplish in life? To maintain a strong relationship with God and family, to have a positive influence on everyone I come in contact with, and to have and support a family of my own.

Sam Mauldin  | Silverdale Baptist Academy, Student Council President

 

Proudest accomplishment?  Heading up a Leadership Summit this year. Favorite extracurricular activity? Being on my church’s youth worship band at Silverdale Baptist Church. It allows me to worship with students from across the city. Impact you want to make on the world? Make the name of Jesus famous in everything I do. Lessons learned from leadership? That delegation is very important when being a leader. Person you admire most? A man named Lebron Sterchi. I had the privilege of working with him for a few summers doing maintenance around the school. He was respected by every person he came into contact with, yet he remained humble. Where would you travel?  To Jerusalem because I want to see where the Jewish faith is rooted. What do you want to accomplish in life? Be the senior pastor of a church, spend some time in the mission field, disciple many young men. 

Valerie Gonzalez  | Dalton High School, Student Body President

 

Proudest accomplishment?  Helping my youngest brother learn how to read. Favorite extracurricular activity? Participating on my school’s Mock Trial team. Impact you want to make on the world? To have others perceive me as someone who listened, cared, and helped others without hesitation, and made the world a slightly better place. Person you admire most? Nellie Bly (Elizabeth Cochran), a female American journalist who wrote various exposés that expressed her distaste of the society she was living in at that time. Her powerful voice resonates with the type of person I want to become. What do you want to accomplish in life? To be able to say I feel truly fulfilled and happy, to liberate the voice that I have and the thoughts that I often keep to myself, and to be able to say that I made my family and close friends proud of who I am and who I become.

Cody Deal  | LaFayette High School, Student Body President

 

Proudest accomplishment?  My proudest accomplishment in leadership is winning the character award for my football team and setting an example for others. Favorite extracurricular activity? Fishing. Impact you want to make on the world? I want to impact the world by serving others in either the medical or engineering field. Lessons learned from leadership? The biggest lesson I’ve learned from my leadership position is to set an example for others. Person you admire most? The person I admire most is Ronald Reagan for his ability to guide others through tense times and lead. Where would you travel? I would travel to Alaska. It’s the last untamed frontier in America. What do you want to accomplish in life? I want to graduate college, play college football, and be a role model for others and for my future kids.

Liz Labbe  | Notre Dame High School, Senior Captain, House of Rex

 

Proudest accomplishment?  Maintaining a 4.2 GPA. I believe my success does not reflect my intellectual ability but my integrity. Impact you want to make on the world? To bring joy to as many people’s lives as possible. I am proud to be a third-generation student of NDHS. Growing up within the Catholic community of Chattanooga has shaped me into the young leader I am today. Lessons learned from leadership? How I act as a leader reflects how my peers behave. How can I expect my team to be passionate if I am not showing my enthusiasm? Person you admire most? My sister Katie, because in addition to her successful leadership career as a Lieutenant in the United States Navy, she still makes time to mentor me. What do you want to accomplish in life? Land my dream job as a radio talk show host, become bilingual, and attend as many music festivals as humanly possible.

Stephen Cone  | Chattanooga Christian School, Student Body President

 

Favorite extracurricular activity? Playing soccer year-round. I play for Chattanooga Football Club Academy and for my high school. Outside of sports, I love reading, paintball, and just about any form of competition. Impact you want to make on the world?  To be spreading God’s love. I want to glorify God by serving and loving others in whatever role God has called me to. Any education/career goals? Attend either West Point or the Naval Academy. I have considered being an engineer, a doctor, a businessman, or a film director. Lessons learned from leadership? How to be efficient in leading, while at the same time loving people and treating them with kindness. What do you want to accomplish in life? Attend a U.S. Service Academy, thru-hike the Appalachian Trail while light packing and running it the whole way, and sail around the whole world while living on a boat.

Anjali Patel  | Cleveland High School, Student Body President & Class President

 

Proudest accomplishment?  Being elected as student body president and being able to represent Cleveland High School at various events like Model UN and TSBA Scope. Favorite extracurricular activity? Soccer, 4-H honor club, SGA, and Environmental Awareness Association. Impact you want to make on the world? Be the strongest version of myself and to keep myself on the right path. Lessons learned from leadership? That sometimes winning doesn’t matter. What matters is that you tried your very best and that you grew from the process. Person you admire most? My mother. She taught me to be independent and to help everyone no matter what. What do you want to accomplish in life? To backpack around the world while being financially stable, to help as many people as I can and see their smiles shine brightly, and to successfully maneuver through any obstacles life throws at me.

Madison Elizabeth Rowe  | Ringgold High School, Senior Class President

 

Proudest accomplishment?  Receiving a “Pin It Forward” leadership award my freshman and senior years at UDA Dance Camp. Impact you want to make on the world? To be an example to everyone when it comes to being positive and generous. Lessons learned from leadership? You need to focus on the team or group as a whole instead of yourself and your position. Person you admire most? Rae Boutté and Tracie Kinsey. They were my dance coaches through high school and they challenged me every time I stepped in the door. They knew my potential and they wouldn’t let me settle for anything but the best I could be! What do you want to accomplish in life? Pursue the plan God has for me, make a positive impact on everyone I meet, and make sure I do my best in everything I do.

Charlie Garza  | Chattanooga High School Center for Creative Arts, Senior Class President

 

Proudest accomplishment? Making it to Destination Imagination global finals with my friends. We had been working toward this unique experience for years. Impact you want to make on the world? To be a gender therapist. Any education/career goals? Attend Warren Wilson College and major in social work and minor in gender and women’s studies. Lessons learned from leadership? Even if people choose you to be in charge, they won’t all like you or agree with every decision you make. Person you admire most? Stef Sanjati, a transgender woman who makes educational YouTube videos about transgender issues. Where would you travel? Greece because I’ve always been very interested in Greek history and mythology. What do you want to accomplish in life? To support and improve the lives and general treatment of all genders and to lead a happy life.

Taryn Robinson  | East Hamilton, Senior Class President

 

Proudest accomplishment?  Creating a game board to help people understand the inequality in our education system, conducting an art show to showcase other local female artists, and serving as class president all throughout high school. Favorite extracurricular activity? Being a part of the buddy club, playing volleyball, and being a student ambassador for the Step-Up program. Impact you want to make on the world?  To pour positive energy into the world and showcase equality. Any education/career goals? Get my doctorate in sociology and psychology and then my license to be an art therapist. Person you admire most? My oldest sister because she took a chance and left home to live in New York. She has taught me to prosper through hard times and to never have an excuse to give up. Where would you travel? To India or Thailand, because they have meditation and yoga camps to cleanse the body spiritually and physically.

Regan Wingrove | Heritage High School, Class President

 

Proudest accomplishment?  Being a part of FCA leadership. Favorite extracurricular activity? Competitive swimming. Impact you want to make on the world? To impact the world through kindness. It might be difficult to impact the whole world, but I can start by impacting one person’s whole world. Any education/career goals? To pursue a BSN degree to eventually become a nurse anesthetist. I have always loved the medical field and been interested in the body and surgery. Lessons learned from leadership? That everyone needs to be included and everyone’s opinion matters. Person you admire most? My mom. She is selfless and would go to any extent to make her kids or her family happy. I am beyond thankful for her and someday I hope that I can be as helpful, caring, and loving as she is. What do you want to accomplish in life? Own a home with my family, travel a lot, and earn my college degree.

Will Klein  | McCallie School, Student Council President

 

Proudest accomplishment?  Living away from home at age 14 and maturing quickly. Favorite extracurricular activity? Working with the Creative Writing Outreach program. McCallie takes several students to a local elementary school to tutor the kids and assist their development as thinkers and writers. Lessons learned from leadership? That in order to be a better leader, your decisions and actions must be made for those around you, even if it goes against your personal thoughts or development. Where would you travel? Gimmelwald, Switzerland. It’s a village on the side of a cliff with a beautiful view of the Alps that has not been affected by resorts and other hotels. For example, most of the humble village’s 120 citizens have the same last name. It’s truly a one of a kind place. What do you want to accomplish in life? Write a novel, learn Chinese or Arabic, trek the Inca Trail.

Nathan Hutchings  | Sale Creek High School, Student Body President

 

Proudest accomplishment?  Helping better our community through community service events, as well as being elected the student body president. Impact you want to make on the world? To be able to personally impact as many people’s lives as I can through service and fellowship. Any education/career goals? To attend either UTK or UTC to get an undergraduate degree in pre-medicine and then become a radiologist. Lessons learned from leadership? That no matter how much planning you do, things will go wrong and everybody won’t be pleased. Person you admire most? My grandparents and parents because of all the ways they have helped me get to where I am today. Where would you travel? Space. Mostly because who wouldn’t want to go to space? What do you want to accomplish in life? Live my life for God, marry and have a family, and be happy. Success is nothing without happiness.

Maranda Dye  | Tennessee Christian Preparatory School, Student Council President

 

Proudest accomplishment?  I am proud to have successfully reached senior year. Favorite extracurricular activity? I enjoy playing volleyball for my school. Impact you want to make on the world? I want to make people feel comfortable in their own skin. Any education/career goals? I want to earn my BSN degree from the University of Maryland. Lessons learned from leadership? As a leader I’ve learned that not everyone will appreciate you, and that’s okay. Person you admire most? I admire my grandmother because she taught me how to be strong in difficult situations. Where would you travel? I would like to travel to Japan because the food seems delicious! What do you want to accomplish in life? I want to graduate college, have a family, and better my relationship with Christ.

Savanna Wilkes | Chattanooga School for the Arts and Sciences, Student Government President

 

Proudest accomplishment? Being selected as an alternate for American Legion Auxiliary Volunteer Girls State.
Favorite extracurricular activity? Chattanooga Symphony and Opera Youth Orchestra. Impact you want to make on the world? Be an example of how to be kind to everyone, because you never know what they could be dealing with. Any education/career goals? Obtain a BSN and become a trauma nurse or a physician’s assistant. Person you admire most? My grandfather. Even when he is feeling down, he is able to make me laugh and put a smile on my face. Where would you travel? Ireland. Some of my family history originated there. I would love to know more about the culture and geography. What do you want to accomplish in life? Make the world a better place, be happy in my field of work, and be an impactful person and good role model.

Preston Ward  | Hixson High School, Senior Class President

 

Impact you want to make on the world?  I would love to leave a positive mark on the world. Any education/career goals? Attend college and become an officer in the United States Army. Lessons learned from leadership? When leading, it is important that you are authentic in everything you do. People will be more inclined to follow you if you are passionate and genuine. Person you admire most? Ray Lewis because he is a textbook example of how successful someone can become when devoting their whole self to something. Where would you travel? To North Korea on a diplomatic mission because it would be interesting to see what really goes on in that country. What do you want to accomplish in life? To become a CEO of a major company, have a healthy family, and to be able to say I have lived a happy life when I am old.

Ashlan Miller  | Central High School, Senior Class President

 

Proudest accomplishment?  Becoming the Battalion Commander of the Central High School JROTC program. Favorite extracurricular activity? Raider team because it makes you use both your mental and physical abilities to their fullest potential. Any education/career goals? Attend the University of Tennessee in Chattanooga to participate in their ROTC program and to earn my degree in law. Then, I plan on joining the United States Army to become a Special Forces Officer and try out to become a Green Beret. Person you admire most? My mother, because no matter what she was faced with, she dealt with it head on and never let anything stop her. Where would you travel? To Jamaica because I admire their culture, traditions, and language. What do you want to accomplish in life? To become a successful military woman/lawyer, to be able to support myself and family, and to live a happy life.

Madelyn “Maddie” Ferrel  | Grace Baptist Academy, Student Body President

 

Proudest accomplishment? Becoming a blood donor and having the opportunity to help save lives. Favorite extracurricular activity? Soccer. Impact you want to make on the world? I want to be humble, kind to everyone I meet, and live like Christ. Any education/career goals? Attend Trevecca Nazarene University to play soccer and study exercise science and then go into physical therapy. Lessons learned from leadership? Don’t be on time. Be early. Person you admire most? My mom’s best friend and my mentor, Mindy Horton. She is one of the greatest examples of love and sacrifice in my life. Where would you travel? I would travel to Belarus because I went there this summer on a mission trip. I love the people there and cannot wait to see them again. What do you want to accomplish in life? Play college soccer, learn Russian, and get married and have a family.

Nicholas Goodale  | Lakeview Fort Oglethorpe High School, Senior Class President

 

Proudest accomplishment?  Getting a five on the AP biology test. It helped me confirm that biology was a passion I could explore and be good at. Favorite extracurricular activity? Despite my horrendous ability at it, basketball was my favorite extracurricular activity. Something about the game kept drawing me in, even though my skill said no. Impact you want to make on the world? To be a positive influence on the world, and more importantly, to inspire others to want to have a positive impact on the world. Any education/career goals? To get a bachelor’s degree in biomedical engineering, and then later a master’s degree. I eventually hope to be at the forefront of research and development of new operations or new prostheses. Person you admire most? Jonathan Simmons of the San Antonio Spurs. He gets to travel the world doing something he enjoys, and to me, that represents true success.