Notable Alumnae Honored During Alumnae Weekend Luncheon

Three receive special recognition
In 2017 GPS established a Notable Alumnae Awards Program to recognize outstanding graduates. One alumna from each reunion class is chosen through a selection process that includes nominations by her classmates and then honored during our GPS Alumnae Weekend.

Notable Alumnae Awards are given to GPS graduates who are considered to be the most outstanding in their classes, including leaders in their communities, directors of organizations or businesses, elected officials, high-ranking military officers, and those who have made a significant difference in the lives of others. 

GPS 2023 Notable Alumnae Honorees
To read the full bio for each of the honorees, please click here.

Elizabeth Bridge Bailey ’58 Teacher, Volunteer, Advocate
Ann Kimball Johnson ’63 Language Therapist, Art Lover, Outdoor Enthusiast
Susan Stimson Peak ’68 Entrepreneur, Dreamer, Connector
Becca Stimson, PhD ’73 Scientist, Educator, Trustee
Ebbie Rowe Cruddas ’78 Advocate, Traveler, Fashionista
Katherine Ruffner, MD ’83 Research Consultant, Life-Saver, Knitter-Extraordinaire
Christa Clumpner Cauley ’88 Advocate, Leader, Helper
Ashley Wolfe Evans ’93 Fundraiser, Believer, Chattahooligan
Renita Eason, MD ’98 Medical Director, Innovator, Leader
Shelley Schmissrauter Kay ’03 Scientist, Educator, Protector
Stephanie Ryals Komic ’08 Neonatologist, Academic, Dog Mom
Emma McCallie ’13 Education Advocate, Speaker, Entrepreneur
Ameera Bhatti ’18 Facilitator, Communicator, Poet

Award Winners
The Distinguished Alumna and the Lupton Award of Excellence recipients are chosen from the Notable Alumnae Awards honorees. The Distinguished Alumna Award is given to the GPS graduate considered to be the most deserving, taking these three criteria into account: service in the home, church, community; professional achievement; and commitment to GPS. Established in 1989, the Margaret Rawlings Lupton Award of Excellence recognizes the outstanding accomplishments of GPS alumnae who have exhibited exceptional citizenship and service to the communities in which they live and beyond, either professionally or in a volunteer capacity.

Additionally, the Love of GPS Award, not given every year but only in special circumstances, celebrates an alumna who loves GPS wholeheartedly and shows her support in a variety of ways. Those who earn this award are incredibly loyal to the school and have a commitment to foster involvement and growth. 

Margaret Rawlings Lupton Award of Excellence | Dr. Becca Stimson
Becca Stimson studied chemistry at Davidson College, where she was a member of the first coed class to graduate from the school. She was awarded Phi Beta Kappa distinction and received the inaugural Rebecca E. Stimson Award, a scholar/athlete award named in her honor. In 1996, she was inducted into Davidson’s Athletic Hall of Fame. She continued her education at Northwestern University, receiving her MS and PhD in chemistry. From there, she launched a 26-year career with Dupont, rising in the ranks from research scientist to global business manager, and raised two children. Today she is a senior lecturer at the University of Tennessee Chattanooga. Becca has been heavily involved in community service over the years and has served as a board member, trustee, and chair for First Centenary United Methodist Church, Davidson College, Putnam County YMCA, American Association of University Women, Friends of the Library, International Host Family Association, Tennessee Technological University, Delaware Community Foundation, and GPS, where she steered the search committee that resulted in Megan Cover’s headship. In her free time, Becca enjoys spending time outside playing tennis, backpacking, and rock climbing.
Distinguished Alumna Award | Ann Kimball Johnson
Ann Kimball Johnson grew up in Chattanooga and received a degree in English and a high school teaching certificate from Vanderbilt University in 1967. After graduating, she married Johnny Johnson, and they settled in his hometown of Houston, Texas. While their children were young, Ann completed a two-year program at the Neuhaus Education Center to teach individuals with dyslexia how to read and continues to be actively engaged there as a lifetime trustee. As a certified academic language therapist, she taught reading comprehension classes for 13 years at Episcopal High School and then at KIPP Houston High School and Yes Prep charter school for six more years. For 40 years she taught elementary level Sunday school classes at St. Luke’s United Methodist Church. Other community involvement over the last 55 years includes the PTAs of Briargrove Elementary and St John’s School, Meals on Wheels, River Oaks Garden Club, Connect Community in Gulfton, and the docent program of the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston. Outside the classroom, Ann enjoys casual golf, baseball, fishing, gardening, pickleball, ethnic restaurants, and galleries. She and Johnny have three children and six grandchildren.
Love of GPS Award | Cate Tinkler Mueller
Cate Tinkler Mueller ’83 is an alumna who has been devoted to her alma mater from the moment she walked on campus as a seventh-grader in 1978. She was a brilliant, highly involved student, whose talent as a gymnast was the envy of the entire student body. Cate chose to return to Chattanooga after her long military career so that her two daughters, Caroline ’20 and Mary ’24, could attend GPS. And as expected, she is a devoted, engaged parent, attending every parent coffee, fundraiser, parent book club, and the list goes on. She even was our emcee for the annual Veteran’s Day luncheon for many years.

Congratulations to our Notable Alumnae and award winners!