Tommie Guess Mullis, born on June 7, 1934 in Sycamore, Georgia passed into the hands of her Lord and Savior Jesus Christ on the afternoon of December 3, 2021, at the age of 87. She was the daughter of the late John Benjamin Guess and Oxie Hickman Guess. She was preceded in death by her brother, John Henry Guess and her son-in-law, Jon Darrell Poole. She is survived by her husband, Norris N. Mullis, Athens, Ga.; her children, Mitch (Jean) Mullis, Colbert, Ga.; Mitzi Mullis Poole, Athens, Ga.; Marisa (Jody) Mullis Reynolds, Bogart, Ga.; and Mark (Melissa) Mullis, Commerce, Ga. Also surviving are her brother Lowell (Frances) Guess, Dublin, Ga. and thirteen grandchildren and four great grandchildren.
After graduating from ABAC (’54), she received a BS degree in Home Economics Education from the University of Georgia (’56), MS in Housing (’79), Certificate in Housing Counseling (’84) and Certificate in Gerontology (’80). Tommie retired in 1993 as a Home Economics Program Development Specialist with the UGA Cooperative Extension Service. With the Cooperative Extension Service she was an Inaugural Counselor at Rock Eagle, 4-H Agent, a County Home Economist, a State Specialist and a District Home Economist. Tommie was also influential as an educator as a Home Economics Teacher, Utility Company Home Economist, Vo-Tech Teacher, and a UGA FACS Professor. Over the past sixty-five years of her career, she made life-long contributions that improved the lives of families, consumers, and students in each of her roles.
During her career, Tommie was active in multiple professional organizations which included membership in Epsilon Sigma Phi, the National Honorary Extension fraternity; American Home Economics Association; Association of Extension Home Economists; Association of 4-H Agents; American Association of Housing Educators; National Association of Home Builders; National Federation of Housing Counselors; College of Home Economics Alumni Association; Master 4-H Agent; and Phi Upsilon Omicron. Tommie received multiple honors throughout her career which included the Distinguished Service Award from the Georgia Association of 4-H Agents; the Outstanding Home Economist Award, Area N Professional Award, and the Distinguished Service Award from the Georgia Home Economics Association where she served as State President; UGA FACS Distinguished Alumni Award; UGA FACS Top 100 Alumni Award; County 4-H Volunteer Award; and State 4-H Public Speaking Award.
Tommie was passionate about projects, activities, charities and individuals that replicate the mission “to advance the well-being of individuals and families over their life span and strengthen communities through the generation and dissemination of knowledge, education of professionals, and provision of research-based programs”. She served in the community as a supporter of the Interfaith Hospitality Network; Volunteer at Athens Regional Medical Center; Board Member of the University Woman’s Club; and Board Member of the Athens Community Council on Aging.
Tommie was a long-time member of Milledge Avenue Baptist Church serving as a deacon, ministry for the aging, Sunday School Class, and various committees. One of her great passions was creating seasonal, relevant vignettes, floral and table capes for the church. She loved being able to share her talent of creativity with the membership to enhance the worship service and special events of the church.
However, beyond her career, and community service accomplishments, her greatest love and joy was her family. Tommie was married to Norris for sixty-one years and blessed with four children. The children along with their spouses, thirteen grandchildren and spouses, and four great-grandchildren makes for a large family. Tommie believed traditions build strong families over a lifetime. Through the years, Norris and Tommie created many traditions to be passed down to future generations. Some of these celebrations and festivities include family weekends on July 4th at Lake Hartwell, gift giving events with a “special cheer”, 16th birthday “roasts”, and the reading of “The Places You Will Go” by Dr. Seuss at graduations. Tommie has made a difference somewhere, somehow with somebody.
A memorial service is planned at Milledge Avenue Baptist Church for January 2022. In lieu of flowers, the family requests donations be made to the following:
Milledge Avenue Baptist Church
1690 S Milledge Ave
Athens, Georgia 30605
1431 Capital Ave, Ste 123
Watkinsville, Georgia 30677
Lord and Stephens Funeral Home, WEST, Watkinsville, is in charge of arrangements. www.lordandstephens.com
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