Athens Academy Top Graduates

Athens Academy named three valedictorians for the 2020 senior class: A.J. Peppers of Good Hope and Elliot Williamson and Logan Williamson of Athens. From left are Elliot Williamson, Logan Williamson, Head of School John Thorsen, Director of Upper School Susan Zalac and Peppers.

ATHENS, Ga. — Athens Academy announced A.J. Peppers, Elliot Williamson and Logan Williamson as the tri-valedictorians for the Class of 2020.

Given that these honors are traditionally intended to recognize the top two students in the graduating class, the school will not be nominating a salutatorian this year.

“We are heartbroken for our seniors and the fact that we will not be able to celebrate all of their achievements in the month of May,” Head of School John Thorsen said. “Regardless of the time, it is awesome to honor our academic leaders. These three students are deserving of this award after years of intellectual curiosity and hard work.”

Upper School Director Susan Zalac agreed.

“We could not be prouder of AJ, Elliot, and Logan,” Zalac said. “They are outstanding and driven students who have excelled in everything that they have done, and I have no doubt in everything that they will do.”

Peppers is the son of Joby and Melissa Peppers of Good Hope. He is a National Merit finalist and a member of the Cum Laude and National honor societies. Throughout his four years in Upper School, Peppers was a member of the Honor Council and was elected to serve on the council’s Judiciary Board. In addition, he is a four-year member of the track and field team and performed in the one-act play during his freshman year.

Peppers will be attending the University of Virginia this fall.

Elliot is the son of Keyes and Melissa Williamson of Athens. He is a National Merit Finalist and a member of the Cum Laude and National honor societies. In his senior year, Elliot held one of the school’s highest levels of student leadership as the director of events for the student body. Previously he served as class vice president during his sophomore and junior years. During his sophomore year, Elliot founded a partnership between the Athens Academy Upper School and the local Boys and Girls Club and has since served as president of this partnership. In addition to his many academic and leadership accomplishments, Elliot has competed on the Athens Academy cross country, wrestling, and track and field teams throughout Upper School and was co-captain for the cross country and wrestling teams during his senior year. This fall, Elliot will be attending the University of Georgia as a Foundation Fellow.

Logan is the son of Keyes and Melissa Williamson of Athens. He is a National Merit Finalist and a member of the Cum Laude and National honor societies. In addition to serving as vice president of the Athens Academy-Boys and Girls Club partnership, Logan is a member of the Athens Mayor’s Youth Commission, where he serves on the environmental sustainability committee. For eight years, Logan participated in Sanborn Western Camps in Colorado as a camper and then as a counselor. In addition to his many academic and leadership accomplishments, Logan has competed on the Athens Academy cross country, wrestling, and track and field teams throughout Upper School and was co-captain for the cross country and wrestling teams during his senior year. This fall, Logan will be attending the University of Georgia as a Foundation Fellow.

Because of the extenuating circumstances around the coronavirus pandemic, the commencement ceremonies for the Class of 2020 have been rescheduled for Aug. 1 on the Athens Academy campus.