Debra Cook brings many years of nonprofit management, marketing, development and fundraising experience to the Center. For the past eleven years, Debra has been the Executive Director of the Rome (GA) Symphony Orchestra. She was formerly Executive Director of United Way in Cartersville (GA), and served as North Georgia Regional Director for the American Diabetes Association and the American Cancer Society.

Debra is a member of the Bartow County Chamber of Commerce Leadership, a Rotarian, Optimist Club member and co-chaired the 1996 Olympic Torch Relay through North Georgia. She enjoys camping, gardening, reading, antiquing, and baseball. Debra is married to Gary Cook. She has two children, four grandchildren and a rescue pet named Ace. 


Amanda Riley is a graduate of the University of Georgia. where she received her Bachelor’s degree in Middle Grades Education. She then went on to complete her Master’s degree in Adolescent Literacy and Technology at Walden University. Prior to joining the staff at The Craddock Center, Amanda taught English/language arts and social studies at the middle school level in Gordon County and in Bartow County for 11 years.

During that time, Amanda developed her passion for writing curriculum and for overseeing various programs and committees for the schools in which she worked. Amanda moved to Ellijay in the summer of 2016 and joined The Craddock Center in January 2017. As the Programs Coordinator, Amanda is excited to be able to combine her passion for developing literacy skills and a love of reading in children with The Craddock Center’s mission of delivering “happy and hope” through their educational and cultural programming.
Outside of her work at The Craddock Center, Amanda enjoys the peace of the mountains with her husband, Kevin. She has two wonderful step-children, Jackson and McKenna, a spoiled but precious Husky mix dog named Millie, and a sassy cat named Bella. Amanda loves to read, spend time with her family and friends, and root on her beloved Georgia Bulldogs!

Valerie Peel is a graduate of Kennesaw State University where she received her Bachelors of Business Administration in Marketing. Valerie currently serves on the Pickens Family Connection Board of Directors, Pickens County Library Board of Trustees and is a member of the Leadership Pickens Class of 2017. She is experienced in fundraising, marketing and community outreach activities and also served as a paralegal for seven years. It is her goal to foster continued progress and recognition of The Craddock Center throughout the region. Valerie is a native of Pickens County and currently resides there with her daughter and golden retriever.
The Craddock Center | PO Box 69 | Cherry Log, GA 30522 | 706-632-1772