The Donald Moss Scholarship Fund is now open for applications. This is the first year that the scholarship is open to Dawson County students who are going on to pursue secondary education in a college or technical school.
Three students will be awarded $5,000 their first year of school, renewable up to four years. Therefore the students would receive $4,000 their second and $3,000 for their final two years, if they continue to attend a secondary institution.
The scholarship is awarded based on both merit and financial needs. Students must have either a GED or high School diploma, and maintain a 2.8 grade point average.
The scholarship is named in honor of Donald Wayne "D.W." Moss, who was a local real estate developer and builder.
Moss died on Nov. 11, 2015 and left his estate in the hands of three executors, who have since been selling his property and putting the proceeds toward the scholarship.
According to executor James Swafford, the scholarship is Moss' legacy.
Swafford said that Moss was a rare individual who loved kids and wanted to help them.
"He had no children, but he loved children," Swafford said. "He always said that Dawson County helped him make what he had, so he wanted to help Dawson County."
Moss was a lifelong resident of Dawson County, according to his obituary.
In 1989 he started a community egg hunt that reached the point of hiding 145,000 eggs and giving out thousands of prizes.
Moss was a member and 50-year mason at Etowah Masonic Lodge No. 222 F&AM, a Shriner and also a member of the Scottish Rite.
He also served on the first planning commission for Dawson County.
Moss worked as a builder and developer most of his life, and built more than 1,000 houses, worked with the International Steel Operator Engineers in the 1950s, who set the steel on all the major bridges that span Lake Lanier and took great pride in helping to construct the Nuclear Lab on the current Dawson Forest property, the Atlanta Farmers Market, the Federal Reserve Bank Building in Atlanta and many others.
"I'm excited we're finally able to bring this scholarship to the students of Dawson County, and I know this will continue to help generations of people," Swafford said.
The scholarship is set up through the North Georgia Community Foundation and opened for applications on Jan. 16. Applications will be accepted through March 15.
To apply, log in or register at http://www.ngcf.org/scholarships and fill out the "common scholarship" application.