Dr. Richard Carnes, Principal
Born and raised in Cherokee County, Dr. Richard (Richie) Carnes has been in the education field for 25 years. He, his wife (Nicole), and sons (Ashton and Braxton) live in the Creekview Zone. Nicole is the Family and Consumer Science teacher at Creekview High School where Ashton is a sophomore lacrosse player. Braxton is a 5th grader at Avery Elementary School, and he enjoys playing baseball and basketball.
Dr. Carnes was a 1990 graduate of Cherokee High School. He attended Georgia Southern University where he received his Bachelor of Science in Education (1994). Dr. Carnes earned a master’s degree in foundations of education from Troy State University (2003), and he earned a master’s degree in education leadership from Georgia College and State University (2008). In 2011, he received his Doctor of Education in Educational Leadership from Nova Southeastern University.
Dr. Carnes taught English at Cherokee High School from 1994-2000. During that stint, he held extracurricular duties such as class sponsor, assistant basketball coach, assistant football coach, assistant baseball coach, and head golf coach. In the fall of 2000, he had the opportunity to move to Martinez, GA to teach and coach at Lakeside High School. During his three years at Lakeside, he taught English, was the head basketball coach (3 years), head softball coach (1 year), and assistant football coach (2 years).
Ashton was born in 2004. Richie, Nicole, and Ashton moved back home to Canton in June of 2004. He became the work-based learning teacher and Career-Tech Department Head at Cherokee High School and continued to be an assistant football coach for four years. In the spring of 2008, he worked as an assistant principal of CCSD’s Polaris Evening School. Then, in the fall of 2008, he became an assistant principal at Carmel Elementary. Braxton was born in 2009 while he was serving as an assistant principal at Carmel Elementary. In the fall of 2011, as an assistant principal, he helped open Indian Knoll Elementary. He stayed at Indian knoll for four years and then became an assistant principal at Mill Creek Middle School through the 2018-2019 school year. He is extremely excited to invest in his own community as the principal of Creekland Middle School.
Mr. Nick Zomer, Assistant Principal - 7th Grade
Hailing from Kalamazoo, Michigan, Mr. Zomer has lived in the metro Atlanta area since 1992. He attended North Georgia College & State University where he received a Bachelor’s of Science in Middle Grades Education. Mr. Zomer earned his Master’s Degree in Technology Integration from Walden University and his Education Specialist Degree in Leadership from Berry College.
Mr. Zomer fist started teaching with the Forsyth County School District in 2003, teaching middle grades science and reading. He moved to the Cherokee County School District in 2007. His wife Tarrah is an educator with the Cherokee County School District as well. He has two sons and a daughter. As a proud supporter of the Michigan Wolverines, he looks for any opportunity to cheer “Go Blue” to all who are nearby to hear it.
Mr. Zomer has been a part of the Cherokee County School District for 12 years, all of which have been in middle grades. He has taught 6th, 7th, and 8th grades science, with 7th grade Life Science being his favorite. Before coming to Creekland, Mr. Zomer has taught at Dean Rusk Middle School and Mill Creek Middle School. At both schools he served as Department Chair and director of the Science Fair. Also at Mill Creek Mr. Zomer was named as the Professional Learning Teacher Leader, overseeing professional growth opportunities for teachers.
Since joining the Grizzly Nation, Mr. Zomer has served as the 6th grade Administrator and Administrator for Special Education, among other duties and responsibilities. He is very excited for the opportunity to follow the students to 7th grade for the 2019-2020 school year.
Mr. Nate Cline, Assistant Principal - 8th Grade
Originally from Hickory, North Carolina, Mr. Cline attended North Carolina State University and Campbell University, earning a Bachelor’s of Science in Pharmaceutical Sciences. After moving towards a career in education, Mr. Cline earned his Master’s degree in Science Education from Florida State University, and continued to obtain his Education Specialist degree in Curriculum and Instruction from Lincoln Memorial University and Leadership Certification from Kennesaw State University.
Mr. Cline began his teaching career in Palm Beach County, Florida in 2004, teaching science and coaching football before moving to Georgia in 2007. He currently resides in Canton with his wife, Ashley, and their two daughters.
Mr. Cline has served the Cherokee County School District for 12 years, working for nine years as a Science teacher and coaching football and track at Creekview High School before moving to Etowah High School for the 2016-17 school year as a Teacher on Special Assignment. While at Etowah, he served as an administrator and RTI Chair, and supervised the Science Department.
Mr. Cline returned to the Creek in 2017 where he has been the 7th Grade Administrator and Athletic Director at Creekland Middle School for the past two years. He is looking forward to rolling up to 8th Grade with those students for the 2019-2020 school year.
Mrs. Leah Bleisath, Assistant Principal - 6th Grade
Mrs. Leah Bleisath was raised here in Cherokee County graduating from Sequoyah High School. She went on to receive a Bachelor of Science in Middle Grades Education with a minor in Dance Education from Brenau Women’s College, a Master in Education with a focus on Literacy in the Content Areas from Walden University, an Education Specialist in Teaching and Learning from Piedmont College and holds a Leadership Certificate from Kennesaw State University.
Mrs. Bleisath spent nine years in the classroom at Teasley Middle School where she served as a Life Science Teacher and STEM teacher before moving into administration. During her time in the classroom, she served on various committees including; Superintendent’s Annual Technology Committee, Superintendent’s Annual Discipline Code Handbook Committee and the Superintendent’s Annual Cherokee Academies/STEM Education Planning, Development and Advisory Committee. Along with serving on these committees, Mrs. Bleisath was a STEMCherokee Facilitato, STARLab Instructor, EdCamp Cherokee Instructor and helped spearhead 3D learning within the county and surrounding counties. Along with her commitment to Cherokee County, Mrs. Bleisath has helped the state of Georgia with the Teacher Keys Evaluation System/Leadership Keys Evaluation System Regional Feedback Effectives Division, Georgia Educational Technology Conference Presenter and was part of the Georgia Milestones Data Review Committee. In 2016, Mrs. Bleisath moved to E.T Booth as a Teacher on Special Assignment helping with administrative duties. At Creekland Middle School, Mrs. Bleisath has served the 8th grade students for the past two years. She is excited about her new role as the 6th Grade Administrator by helping them transition and grow as Grizzlies and ensure their readiness for the high school. Due to Mrs. Bleisath making a smooth transition from the classroom to administration, she was selected as a first-year Assistant Principal to speak at the Georgia Association of Secondary Schools about the successful transition process and guidance for future first-year assistant principals. It’s important to continue to build the positive community outreach by working with students, teachers and the community to increase initiatives in the school setting where success is found amongst all of students.
Mrs. Bleisath is an active member of the Cherokee County Service League and volunteers with different organizations throughout the year such as Shop with a Hero. Mrs. Bleisath is married to her best friend, Ryan, and together raise their three girls Kaitlyn, Jocelyn and Tatum.
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