Gwinnett County recently named its STAR student for 2020. Pictured L to R: Brookwood HS Principal Bo Ford, Partnership Gwinnett Vice President Adam Forrand, Gwinnett STAR Student Hollis Zeng, Gwinnett STAR Teacher Craig Witmer, and Brookwood HS Counselor William Blair.

STAR students for Gwinnett, Buford school districts named

From a field of Gwinnett County’s brightest students,  Brookwood High’s Hollis Zeng emerged as Gwinnett County’s STAR (Student-Teacher Achievement Recognition) Student, at a ceremony earlier this month.

Representing Gwinnett County’s public and private schools, the STAR student honor is bestowed on the senior in the top 10 percent of his or her class with the highest SAT score. As part of the recognition, the STAR student selects a teacher who has had a strong influence on his/her academic career.

The Brookwood High senior selected his 12th grade Advanced Placement Economics teacher, Craig Witmer, as his STAR Teacher. Buford City Schools’ honorees included Ye Choi and John Alan Williams and their respective STAR Teachers, Tim Harris and Justin Johnson. 

The Professional Association of Georgia Educators Foundation and Partnership Gwinnett partnered to honor STAR Student and Teacher honorees during this year’s STAR Student and Teacher Luncheon on Friday, Feb. 7. The event celebrates all local school STAR students from each Gwinnett County high school (public and private), as well as the top student from Buford High School (Buford City Schools). 

Related story: Teacher names STAR for 31st time

Local sponsors include Partnership Gwinnett; Presenting Sponsor— Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta; Leading Sponsor— Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine- Georgia Campus and Georgia First; Principal Sponsor— Gwinnett County Public Schools Foundation, Inc., and Supporting Sponsors— Georgia Power and Peach State Federal Credit Union; and Corporate Sponsor—Georgia United Credit Union. 

The 2020 Gwinnett County and Buford City STAR Student and Teacher winners will now move on and compete for the regional title. Regional winners will then move to the state level for the honor of being named Georgia’s 2020 STAR Student and Teacher. 

2020 STAR Students and Teachers representing all Gwinnett high schools: 

  • Archer: students Summer Porter and John Fortner, teacher Joni Jameson 
  • Berkmar: student Eric Truong and teacher Hailey Nutt 
  • Brookwood: student Hollis Zeng and teacher Craig Witmer 
  • Buford: students Ye Choi and John Alan Williams and teachers Tim Harris and Justin Johnson 
  • Central Gwinnett: student Carolyn Phung and teacher 
  • Andres Serna Lopez 
  • Collins Hill: student Matthew Sumanen and teacher Laura Herbig 
  • Dacula: student Devin Kelsey and teacher Andrea Craig 
  • Discovery: student Ian Peters and teacher Heath Gibson 
  • Duluth: student Shalin Jain and teacher Christopher DeCastro 
  • Grayson: student Claire Mistretta and teacher Lara Larson 
  • Greater Atlanta Christian: student Antong Zheng and teacher Gerald Hill 
  • Gwinnett Online Campus: student Austin Taussig and teacher Stacy White 
  • Gwinnett School of Mathematics, 
  • Science and Technology: student Young Lin and teacher Patricia Caldwell 
  • Hebron Christian Academy: student Rebeca Olariu and teacher Calin Pop 
  • Killian Hill Christian: student Jeevan George and teacher Dan Totten 
  • Lanier: student Stella Choi and teacher Tamaiko Chappell 
  • McClure Health Science: students Vanessa Franco and Yesenia Lopez and teachers Diana Do and Jessie Zaretsky 
  • Meadowcreek: student Hung Ngo and teacher Marietta Malone 
  • Mill Creek: student Elijah Shaw and teacher Amy Carmichael 
  • Mountain View: student Gary Thomas and teacher 
  • Lauren Horton (currently an assistant principal at Grayson High) 
  • Norcross: student Daniel El-Sayegh and teacher Michelle Larate 
  • North Gwinnett: student Maya Chande and teacher 
  • Matthew Johnson (currently a Buford High teacher) 
  • Notre Dame Academy: student Catherine Grace “CG” Sigman and teacher Greg Hite 
  • Parkview: students Mary Wang and Toby Nguyen and teachers Allen Murphy and Phil Heier 
  • Paul Duke STEM: student Chunjin Park and teacher 
  • Ariel Cash 
  • Peachtree Ridge: student Alice Ao and teacher Yancey Miller 
  • Providence Christian Academy: student Landon King and teacher Michael Aleman 
  • Shiloh: student Miriam Martinez Rivera and teacher  Elizabeth Schneider 
  • South Gwinnett: student Henoc Zinga and teacher  Debra Brown (retired from Grayson High) 
  • Wesleyan: student Andrew “Andy” Yang and teacher Abby Holmes

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