CHEROKEE COUNTY, GA (June 3, 2021) | Be Pro Be Proud Georgia – a comprehensive initiative that connects students around the state to high-demand, high-paying careers – recently announced it is the recipient of a $600,000 grant from The Marcus Foundation. The Foundation’s commitment represents Be Pro Be Proud Georgia’s largest investment to date.

Launched in July 2020, Be Pro Be Proud Georgia brings awareness of the skilled professions directly to students through an interactive mobile workshop and website that features 15 of Georgia’s most in-demand professions along with statewide training programs and companies looking to hire talent.

Since its launch, Be Pro Be Proud Georgia has hosted more than 9,600 students with 51 tour stops. The Marcus Foundation’s generous two-year investment will help Be Pro Be Proud continue to scale statewide, attracting talent to Georgia’s high-demand industry sectors and changing public perception about these valuable careers.

The Marcus Foundation is well known for its groundbreaking investments in initiatives that deliver unprecedented training opportunities and build a sustainable workforce. “The path to success is not always paved with a four-year degree,” said Bernie Marcus, Chairman of the Marcus Foundation. “A skill within the trades can lead to a lifelong, fulfilling career. From construction workers to commercial truck drivers, the skilled professions help build our world and keep our economy moving forward.”

The Foundation’s early investment in this public/private partnership will begin solving one of this state’s greatest problems and influence widescale change.  “Bernie Marcus is a visionary and has been a lifelong champion of job creation and economic opportunity,” said Marshall Day, Cherokee Office of Economic Development Chairman and Be Pro Be Proud Georgia Founding Team Member. “The skills gap is a threat to economic growth, and The Marcus Foundation’s support will help this initiative close that gap.”

With over 66 statewide requests from Thomasville to Ringgold, Be Pro Be Proud Georgia will kick off its fall tour in August 2021. To learn more about Be Pro Be Proud Georgia, visit


Be Pro Be Proud Georgia, an initiative started by the Cherokee Office of Economic Development, is leading the movement to bring a new generation of pride, progress, and professionals to Georgia’s skilled workforce.