FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
MARCH 3, 2022

Georgia Forestry Commission GFC) employees working throughout Early and Miller Counties have been awarded the agency’s “South Zone County of the Year” award. The annual honor is given by the GFC’s Forest Protection Department, which manages wildfire readiness throughout the state. Criteria were measured in the categories of, performance and productivity, safety, and achievements.

“Under the direction of Chief Chad Brackin, employees in the Early/Miller Unit demonstrated remarkable accomplishments during a time when normal operations were anything but normal,” said Georgia Forestry Commission Director Tim Lowrimore. “Despite the challenges of COVID-19, vacancies, and restrictions, this team earned impeccable marks across the board and is most deserving of this recognition.”

Unit personnel was commended for their continued exemplary service to landowners impacted by Hurricane Michael, with each employee averaging more than 104 hours for the installation of firebreaks and contributing to a 99%+ evaluation score for maintenance and repair, keeping wildland fire suppression equipment fire-ready. Due to their many skills, more than $125,000 in savings was realized on construction and improvement projects. Chief Brackin was recognized for assisting Human Resources in the new-hire process and was instrumental in securing a large grant for the replanting of trees destroyed by Hurricane Michael in the City of Colquitt and Miller County. In addition, all rangers assisted in training local fire departments in wildland fire suppression tactics and deployed to western wildfires last summer and fall.

“The GFC bar is set high,” said Lowrimore. “Many of our units made exceptional strides last year, and it’s clear county personnel have a steadfast focus on high-quality service to the State of Georgia.”

For more information about services of the Georgia Forestry Commission, visit GaTrees.org.

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