About Us

President's Message

Dr. Neal Tam

TamDear Middle Level Educator!
Thank you for taking the time to visit the Georgia Middle School Association (GMSA) website. Not only have you chosen one of the most important professions, but you have elected to serve in the middle grades. Middle grades children are encountering more changes than any time since birth, and you play a crucial role in their development during this time. The Georgia Middle School Association provides middle grades teachers in Georgia opportunities to networking with middle level educators across the state, opportunities for professional growth, and access to resources designed for the middle grades.
The Georgia Middle School Association is proud to serve as the sole organization representing the middle level educators in our state. We host an outstanding state conference each year where teachers have opportunities to present on best practices from their classroom, attend sessions on new methods for student engagement, and network with other professional educators from across our great state. In addition, teacher grants, team of the year awards, and educator of the year awards are presented annually. Check out our website for more information on applying for grants or nominating one of your peers for an award. You must have either an individual GMSA membership or your school must be an institutional member in order to be eligible. Nominations and applications are typically due in late November, so be sure to take advantage of these opportunities to acknowledge the wonderful work being done in middle schools across Georgia.
Our association is also the primary sponsor for the Georgia Lighthouse Schools to Watch program. Do you think your school meets the criteria for this distinguished recognition? Check out the Lighthouse Schools to Watch application on our webpage and apply for a team visit.
As a member of the Georgia Middle School Association, you receive information on middle grades topics via our Facebook and Twitter feed. Among the privileges of membership in GMSA are discounted conference fees, opportunities to present at our annual conference, and eligibility to apply for grants and awards sponsored by GMSA. We also produce newsletters throughout the year that are sent to members. We are currently working to provide member’s only access to the Professional Treasure Trove. This member benefit contains numerous resources from Dr. John Lounsbury, the father of the middle school movement. You would not want to miss out on having access to these resources.
I encourage you to join GMSA! We are YOUR professional organization in Georgia. We share a love for young adolescents in the middle years. We also know that we need to support one another, share ideas that work, and be the advocate for middle grade children in our state. Join the GMSA family today!

Keep up the great work!!

Neal Tam, President


GMSA Region Map

Board of Directors



Dr. William “Neal” Tam, President
Director of Administrative Services
716 North Lee St
Thomson, Georgia 30824



Dr. Nancy B. Mizelle, Past President, Treasurer
Professor, Georgia College
Milledgeville, Georgia 31061



, Metro West Liaison


Dr. Brad Bowling, Northeast Liaison
Principal, Westside Middle School
240 Matthews School Road
Winder, Georgia



Ms. Camille McElroy, Co-Director GA Lighthouse STW
Lighthouse Schools to Watch Liaison
Retired Assistant Principal, Fulton County



Ms. Nancy Blair, Metro East Liaison
Principal, Rising Star Middle School
183 Panther Path
Fayetteville, GA



Dr. John Pritchett, State Department Liaison
Georgia Department of Education
205 Jesse Hill, Jr. Drive, SE
Atlanta, Georgia 30334


Dr. Jesse Davis,  GAMSP Liaison, GAMSP President-Elect
Principal, Feagin Mill Middle School
1200 Feagin Mill Road
Warner Robins, GA 31088



Ms. Maggie Jones
Ms. Hallie Blizzard
CMLA Liaisons
Georgia Southern
Statenville, GA


Dr. Suvess Ricks, Treasurer
Retired Associate Superintendent


Ms. Yvette Foster, President-Elect
Principal, Riverside Middle School
1095 Fury’s Ferry Road
Evans, Georgia 30809


Mr. Thomas Moore, Corporate Sponsorship Coordinator
Principal, Perry Middle School
495 Perry Parkway
Perry, GA  31609


Ms. Lee Anne Thrift, Central West Liaison
Teacher, Bonaire Middle School
125 Hwy, 96 East
Bonaire, GA 31005


Ms. Pennie Fowler, Northwest Liaison
Principal, Pickens County Middle School
1802 Refuge Road
Jasper, GA  30143


, Southwest Liaison



Dr. Deborah Paine, Southeast Liaison
Middle, Secondary, Reading, and Deaf Education
Valdosta State University
1500 N. Patterson St
Valdosta, Georgia 31698



Dr. Sarah Hartman, 


Dr. Amanda Wall, College Liaison
Newsletter Co-Editor
Assistant Professor, Georgia Southern University
PO Box 8134
Statesboro, Georgia 30460


Dr. John H. Lounsbury
Dean Emeritus
Georgia College and State University
CBVX 071
Milledgeville, GA 31601