September 22, 2023
Hero Behind the Hero Scholarship

Deputy city clerk receives HBH scholarship

Michele Greene, of Lake City, Fla., sees her recent win of the Hero Behind the Hero Scholarship presented by Columbia Southern University as an opportunity to practice what she preaches.

Michele Green

Michele Green

“I tell my children how important a good education is and what you put into it, is what you get out of it,” said the deputy city clerk for Lake City and mother of two. “They can see me work, study, prepare, and succeed. They too will know that they can do anything if they try their best — even win an awesome honor such as this scholarship.”

The Hero Behind the Hero Scholarship, which honors the spouses and children of active-duty public safety personnel (firefighters, law enforcement officers, EMTs and dispatchers) and military men and women, covers tuition for up to 24 months for one specific degree program with CSU. The scholarship is awarded six times a year to two individuals each time.

Greene’s husband, Christopher Greene, serves as a GS-8 Lead Firefighter/BLS Hazmat technician with the U.S. Air Force (civil service) at Moody Air Force Base, Ga. A former Air Force staff sergeant herself, Greene said her husband’s inspiration and positive experience with CSU motivated her to apply for the scholarship.

In her essay, Greene said she had been waiting for an educational opportunity like this one for  a while.

“I was able to complete my associate’s degree in fire science while I was active-duty. However, I strived to complete a bachelor’s degree. Upon leaving the Air Force, I supported my husband’s educational goals, putting his goal before mine, as he finished his bachelor’s and master’s degrees through CSU,” she said.

“By this time, my VA Educational Benefits had expired. This did not deter me from moving forward with my dream. I recently enrolled in a bachelor’s program with CSU and I have been very open about my struggles and successes in completing my bachelor’s degree with my children. I want my children to know how important education is, as well as it is a personal commitment for them. This scholarship would provide me the avenue to finish my dream and not at the expense of my children’s educational future.”

Greene plans to pursue a bachelor’s degree in business administration with a specialization in management.

“Being in municipal government, training and education funds are limited. I recognized that if I finished my bachelor’s in management through CSU, I would finally finish the degree I started in 1990,” Greene explained. “This degree would assist me in obtaining education points toward a Certified Municipal Clerk certification for my current job.”

She has worked for Lake City for approximately five years. “Before that, I worked approximately six years for a non-profit organization  that promotes independence for seniors. During my tenure with Columbia County Senior Services, I held the positions of in-home services supervisor, case manager, human resource manager and finally Fiscal Officer/HR manager.

Greene enjoys time with her family and learning to play the guitar. “My husband and I took up instruments about three years ago and love it. I also absolutely love saltwater fishing! Give me a deep sea fishing trip any day,” she added.