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Contact: Matt Bishop, 706-542-6201,

In selecting the winners of the 2015 Peabody Awards, the jurors used a new voting process developed by the J.W. Fanning Institute for Leadership Development that helped keep the jury focused on the entries and streamlined the discussions.

The J.W. Fanning Institute for Leadership Development honors student workers, Public Service and Outreach scholars, and graduate students who completed degrees during the 2015-2016 academic year.

Andrew Boyer, a PSO scholar, completed a bachelor’s degree in criminal justice with minors in Spanish and theatre. While at Fanning, he worked with the Athens Peer Court, a program developed by University of Georgia public service and local juvenile justice units to train middle- and high-school students to staff a court for first time youth offenders.

A vibrant energy filled the room as the inaugural class of the Lynda Brannen Williamson Foundation Women’s Leadership Academy received graduation certificates and gifts to honor the memory of the organization’s namesake. The Statesboro-based foundation established the academy in partnership with the University of Georgia’s Fanning Institute to encourage and prepare women to take leadership roles in Southeast Georgia.

“Lynda’s legacy and vision will live on through these graduates,” said Sally Scott, a participant from Georgia Southern University.