Entries being accepted for Judy Barton Memorial Tourism Scholarship

Published 4:34 pm Friday, March 29, 2024

The Cumberland Gap Region Tourism Association is now accepting entries for the Judy Barton Memorial Tourism Scholarship.

Any high school senior attending a public or private high school within the ten counties of the Cumberland Gap Region may compete in the Judy Barton Memorial Tourism Scholarship Speech Competition on April 25 for a $1,000 college Scholarship. Those counties include Bell, Harlan, Knox and Whitley in Kentucky, Lee, Virginia, and Claiborne, Campbell, Grainger, Hancock and Union in Tennessee.

Judy Barton was a pioneer in the development of tourism in the Cumberland Gap Region. She served as the city recorder for theTown of Cumberland Gap for many years. During that time she was director of the famous “Folk Fest” and was a driving force in the creation of “The State of Cumberland.” In 2000 she became the director of tourism in Bell County and became an adviser and advocate for tourism development throughout the State of Kentucky and the Cumberland Gap Region.

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The tourism association established a scholarship in Barton’s honor after she passed away in 2018. Those competing present a five to seven minute speech with a theme of  “What impact does tourism and tourism development have upon the economy of the Cumberland Gap Region?” Each year the winner is chosen by judges.

Previous winners include Haley Nicely of Washburn High School (2018), Ethan Phillips of Barbourville High School (2019), Rebecca Fortner of Pineville High School (2020), Edmond Samuel Dye of Harlan County High School (2021), Gavin Graves of Union County High School (2022) and Jay Goins of Bell County High School (2023).

A competition application, full rules and details can be found at www.cumberlandgapregion.com.