Derek Bowen

[email protected]

Derek BowenI am so excited to be the principal of Gilmer High School. I am a Georgia native and have lived in and around Gwinnett County most of my life. I graduated from Berkmar High School in 1989 with a desire to become a middle school teacher and coach. Those plans changed, and I eventually found my way into a project management position with a large mechanical contractor in Atlanta. The tug of education continued until I returned to college and completed three degrees in business and business education from Shorter University and the University of Georgia. GO DAWGS! I have been a business education teacher, a high school coach, an athletic director, assistant principal, and associate principal, all in Gwinnett County.

I just recently completed my 20th year in education and have loved every minute of it.

The opportunity to become the principal of Gilmer High School is one that I don’t take lightly. The community has proven to be a strong supporter of our public education system, and I appreciate their support as we increase opportunities for students both in and outside of the school building.

I look forward to this journey. It’s a great day to be a BOBCAT!

College and Career Academy Director

Carla Foley
[email protected]

Carla Foley

It is a great honor and privilege to serve as director of our College and Career Academy! I am very blessed and fortunate to be part of a wonderful staff of teachers, paraprofessionals, and administrators! Everyone's dedication and commitment to every student at GHS is apparent when you walk in the door.

I was born and raised in Norcross, GA, and I graduated from Rabun Gap-Nacoochee School. I completed my undergraduate degree at Georgia Southern University, and then spent the next 22-years in Denver, CO, where I taught 6th grade for 15-years, was an assistant principal for 2-years and an elementary school principal for 5-years. During my time in Denver, I earned my M.A. in Education with an emphasis in Instructional Technology, as well as my Principal Licensure from the University of Colorado - Denver.

In December 2014, after visiting my family for Christmas Break and spending a week in Ellijay, we decided it was time to return to Georgia. We love Ellijay and look forward to many years of being a part of this community and serving the students and families of GHS!!!

Assistant Principals

Tiffany Boyette
Assistant Principal for Curriculum 

[email protected]

Tiffany Boyette

I am very excited about working with the students and staff at Gilmer High School as the Academic Assistant Principal. I have taught a variety of grade levels and content areas. The grade levels range from grades 4-9. Math was always my area of specialty however, I have also taught science, social studies, language arts, and reading. I received my undergraduate degree from Florida Atlantic University, my Masters Degree from North Georgia College and State University, and my Specialist Degree from Lincoln Memorial University.

I was born and raised in Martin County, Florida. I moved to Ellijay, GA with my husband ten years ago. Gilmer County is our forever home and a perfect place to raise our three children.

Matt Johnson
Assistant Principal/Athletic Director

[email protected]

Matt JohnsonI was born and raised in Gouverneur, New York, a    small community much like Ellijay. I earned my Bachelor's degree from SUNY Potsdam in 2001 in the fields of Elementary Education and History, My teaching experience began as a fourth-grade teacher in Paulding County, Georgia in 2002, and I spent eleven wonderful years in that position. In 2014, I was blessed with a teaching position in Gilmer County as a third-grade teacher at Ellijay Elementary. For the past three years I have served Ellijay Elementary, Gilmer Middle, and Clear Creek Middle as an Academic Coach. Now I am thrilled to work with the students and staff as an assistant principal at Gilmer High School. I received my Master's degree in Educational Administration from Jacksonville State University in 2006. I also earned my Specialist degree in Curriculum and Instruction from Piedmont College in 2016.

As I mentioned, Ellijay is much like my hometown, minus the cold and snow, of course. That makes Gilmer County the perfect place to be. My wife and I are excited to raise our two children and future Bobcats in this outstanding school system and community.