In recognition of their hard work over the last year, three employees of Dawsonville and the Dawson County governments were honored last week at the 2021 Employee of the Year Luncheon, hosted by the Dawson County Rotary Club.
After the luncheon, Dawson County Rotary Club President Sharon Hall said the club was honored to host the yearly event and proud to recognize some of the county’s many exemplary employees.
Hall said after a year as complicated as 2020, with the pressures and dangers of COVID-19, it’s all the more important to recognize hard-working public servants in the community.
“I was really proud of them,” she said. “COVID-19 didn’t stop their jobs at all and couldn’t stop them.”
The Dawson County News spoke with each of the 2021 Employees of the Year after the event. Here’s what we learned.
Patrick Meyers — Dawson County firefighter/EMT of the Year
Patrick Meyers, a firefighter/EMT with two years of experience at the Dawson County Fire Department, said he was totally surprised to receive his award.
"I'm honored, it was a surprise to me for sure," Meyers said. "Going into the day I didn't really know this award existed."
A native of New York, but raised in Jefferson, Georgia, Meyers was hired by the Dawson County Fire Department right out of Lanier Technical College’s EMT School.
"That leap of faith right there, that shows a lot about the chief staff here and their belief in me," he said.
While in school, Meyers, 22, trained in Dawson County, so when the job offer from Dawson County came in, he knew it was somewhere he could build a career.
"I got a taste of what the department was like, everybody was super great, super kind, very helpful," he said. "They offered me a job and I said absolutely."
Clay Moss — Dawsonville building inspector and code enforcement officer
A true jack of all trades, Dawsonville Employee of the Year Clay Moss has never been afraid of a challenge.
A Dawson County native and graduate of Dawson County High School, Moss joined the city of Dawsonville nearly three years ago and embraced the challenge of a new role as building inspector and code enforcement officer.
"If you try to veer away from a challenge you're never going to get anywhere," Moss said. "I wanted to better myself, went out on a limb and I'm loving it so far."
While expressing his gratitude to be chosen for the award, Moss said all his peers were equally deserving of the recognition.
"Every employee at the city is deserving of the award I got, it's just that I happened to be the one that got picked," he said. "It's an honor, yes. But I would tell you that you could pick a name, and each and every one of them would have been qualified just as much as I was."
Bryan Young — Dawson County Public Works project manager
If you’ve spent any time driving around Dawson County or frequented one of the county’s many public parks and facilities, you’ve likely benefited from the handiwork of Bryan Young.
As project manager for Dawson County’s Public Works Department, Young is responsible for all of the county’s capital improvement projects and has a hand in everything from the construction of new county buildings to road improvements and park renovations.
But according to the former private utility contractor, now a dedicated civil servant and University of North Georgia Engineering Student, every successful project that his department completes is built off the hard work and dedication of multiple county departments working in unison.
"I know these projects get done efficiently, on time, on budget, that's great. But it's only with the help of other departments that that's possible," Young said.
Following the employee of the year luncheon, Young thanked his superiors and peers for their support, stating that he was just one example of the hard-working employees that Dawson County employs.
"It was definitely a shock to get it, I've only been here two years and I know there’s a lot of people who have worked at the county a lot longer," he said.