Emily Ammons, Crestview High School, selected as Peggy Gorday Bruner Award Winner for Class of 2020

Emily Ammons, Crestview High School,elected as Peggy Gorday Bruner Award Winner for Class of 2020


Emily Ammons, Crestview High School, with a GPA of 4.7720, was named this year’s winner of the prestigious Peggy Gorday Bruner Award.

The Peggy Gorday Bruner Award is presented to the most outstanding academic scholar among all of the county's graduating classes. Each high school has submitted their senior student nomination for this prestigious award which conveys their outstanding abilities and is a distinguished honor of which they should be proud.

One senior student is selected countywide from the school nominations. The recipient of this award has been selected by the Okaloosa County School Board.

Peggy Bruner taught first grade in the Okaloosa County school system for 25 years and was married to Okaloosa County school superintendent, Max Bruner, who held that office from 1964 until 1984. Okaloosa County and Fort Walton Beach was a much smaller community back then and Peggy Bruner taught many of the kids coming through school in the south end of our county.

Both Peggy and Max Bruner were passionate about public education and believed that it was the key to achieving the modern American dream. She was dedicated to striving for excellence in all facets of childhood development. She would be deeply gratified to know that our County’s highest award for educational achievement and excellence is named after her.

The students nominated for the 2019-2020 School Year were:

  • Josie Mason - Baker School
  • Corey Chung - Choctawhatchee High School
  • Emily Ammons - Crestview High School
  • Fiona Brown - Fort Walton Beach High School
  • Jessa L'Homme - Laurel Hill School
  • Sara Strunk - Niceville High School

About Emily Ammons

Emily has been very active in her school and community over the years and has served in many leadership positions. Emily plans to attend the University of South Alabama where she plans to major in Communications with a focus on Multimedia Journalism.

Emily’s Awards include:

  • Okaloosa County Sunshine State Scholar Alternate
  • Mid-Gulf Coast Affiliate Honorable Mention for National Coalition of Women in Information Technology
  • Certified Internet Webmaster Site Development Associate
  • Advanced HTML5 and CSS3 Specialist
  • Microsoft Bundle Certified
  • Will receive Associate of Arts degree from Northwest Florida State College
  • Received Anne T Mitchell Honors Freshman, Sophomore, Junior, and Senior Year

Clubs and Activities

  • The Fellowship of Christian Athletes (FCA) is a club that calls student athletes together in the name of Christ. “Through this club, I have learned many leadership skills through the experience of hosting leadership team meetings, regular club meetings, and many community events,” Emily stated.
    • Grades 9 & 10: Member
    • Grade 11: Junior Representative for Crestview High School, Crestview High School Ambassador, Testimony Leader for County-Wide Fields of Faith and Breakfast
    • Grade 12: President, Crestview High School Ambassador, Social Media Coordinator, Icebreaker Leader for County-Wide Breakfast. Coordinated local Fields of Faith Event, tailgates, meetings, and many other community events sponsored by FCA.
  • I Am Enough is a movement to raise awareness of mental health issues in schools and encourage positivity in spite of them. This club was started this year to encourage positivity in peers and will hopefully continue to do so in future years.
    • Grade 12: Co-founder and Vice President
  • Young Republicans of America is a club with the goal to encourage students to delve into politics for themselves rather than following their parents. This club is not not exclusive to Republicans but focuses on informing the student body of Republican ideas. Debates especially encourage multiple parties to be represented so students can civilly discuss and understand each others’ political views.
    • Grade 12: Historian - Coordinated social media, resolved conflicts, helped in planning of meetings and debates via officers team
  • Juniorettes is a service-based club for young women. In this club. Emily served in our community by participating in and fundraising for the Relay for Life, helping in the coordination of school events such as Top Dog, and raising awareness of domestic violence.
    • Grades 10, 11, 12: Member

Community Involvement:

  • International Missions - During the Summer after her Junior year, Emily embarked on an International Missions trip to Gbentchal, Togo, West Africa with the non-profit organization Mentor Leaders. On this trip, she helped hold a discipleship camp for youth-aged girls by leading lessons and activities.
  • Local Church Leadership - During high school, Emily has also been very involved in leadership positions in youth at Woodlawn Baptist, a local church. She served as a volunteer at Vacation Bible School for many years, a middle school girls discussion group leader, and an event coordinator for a Special Need Parents Night Out and other parties/events.
  • Soup Kitchen - Emily volunteered at a local soup kitchen and acted as youth liaison between kitchen and local church students volunteering there.
  • Communications Internship - Emily served as the communications intern for local non-profit, Early Learning Coalition of the Emerald Coast which involved the management of three social media platforms: Facebook, Instagram, and LinkedIn as well as running community campaigns such as Giving Tuesday and a Local Hanging of the Hands. She also attended and helped at many events and planning meetings either hosted or attended by the Early Learning Coalition.

Congratulations to Emily and all of the Award Nominees!