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Faith, Family and Healing can be found at Stinson & Voss Physical Therapy

NEWPORT—Proverbs 16:9 reads “A man’s heart plans his way, but the Lord determines his steps.”

This passage holds special meaning for Drs. Megan Stinson and Kaitlyn Voss. With the Lord guiding the way, the doctors have come together to open Stinson and Voss Physical Therapy in Newport.

Both may look familiar to the community as they worked at VIP Therapy for many years. The idea of opening their own practice had floated around the minds of both women, but the timing never seemed right.

They say that God stepped in to guide them to the place they needed to be.

“We had talked about a partnership for years, but things never really seemed right until a few months ago,” Stinson said.

“It was like God saying it is finally time and He laid everything out for us. God put us here for a reason, and you can see his handprint on everything.”

In the matter of a few short months the pair have turned a vacant building on West Highway 25/70 into an office featuring everything they need to promote healing for their patients.

Stinson said this experience has helped strengthen many aspects of their lives including their families.

“Seeing God place all these things in motion has been amazing and faith building. Both of us said this is the time for us to do this because we didn’t want to miss this blessing.

“It has brought our families closer and strengthened our individual marriages. It’s amazing watching God work in our lives because we know He will provide for us.”

Running their own practice gives Stinson and Voss more time to focus on each patient’s individual needs. Voss said it is important to listen to their needs while developing a treatment plan that features outside the box ideas.

“I love the way things are working so far and the amount of time we get to spend with each of our clients,” Voss said.

“People come here looking for specialized care geared towards their specific problems. We love patients that are looking to take their care into their own hands. We’re looking for individuals who have gone other places and their results haven’t lasted. Not all therapy is the same, so we would love to help those individuals.”

The doctors say their work is extremely rewarding, and allows them to set a strong example for their children. They hope their children develop a work ethic that is centered on helping others.

“We treat every patient that comes in like family,” Stinson said.

“Kaitlyn and I have our children here which helps us develop their work ethic and social skills. It shows them what we do for a living, and hopefully it teaches them about faith and helping others.”

Stinson and Voss offer cash based plans that provide patients with a more affordable option. Insurance companies often times limit visits and services that are covered under their plans.

The cash option allows an individual to pursue the one on one care they deserve. They provide patients with the tools they need to manage their recovery, which provides better outcomes and continuity of care.

The transparency in price has led more patients to seek care from Stinson and Voss. They don’t see other physical therapy providers in the area as competition, but as allies working to better the community.

“Several others are expanding and opening in the area, but we didn’t hesitate in opening our office,” Stinson said.

“We are not competitors, we only offer something different. We all play a part in helping the community and making Cocke County better as a whole.”

Stinson and Voss offer a wide array of services, many of which go beyond simple rehabilitation from injuries.

The doctors can develop specific plans to promote overall wellness and an improved quality of life.

They say “both of us are here because we love what we do and it’s what God called us to do. He provides the healing but uses us as vessels.”

To find out more about Drs. Stinson and Voss, visit their website at https://www.stinsonandvosspt.com.


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Three young ladies to be introduced at 2021 Teen Board Presentation Dance

COCKE COUNTY—Three young ladies from Cocke County have been selected as presentees at the 61st Annual Teen Board Presentation Dance.

The Teen Board Presentation Dance, Saturday evening August 21, 2021, is one of the largest teenage (black tie) dances in the country where teenagers and adults alike enjoy the same social occasion.

Last year hundreds of leading teenagers as well as adults (from various parts of the United States) enjoyed the same event.

This is the outstanding social event of the year. It is not just a dance or a social debut for teenagers. It has far greater meaning. The Teen Board of Knoxville is building leaders for the future.

Cocke County’s presentees for 2021 include Meredith Allyson McNabb, Sophia Marie Rouleau and Karlie Souder.

Meredith Allyson McNabb is the daughter of Steve and Lindsay McNabb.

Meredith, also known as Ally, is a senior at Cocke County High School. She is beginning her fourth year on the CCHS cheer squad. She has been enrolled in AP/Honors courses throughout her high school career.

Ally values music in her everyday life. She is beginning her fourth year in the CCHS choir. This year she was awarded All-East and All-State women’s choir. She is also active with the Newport Theater Guild and Niswonger Performing Arts Center in many musical theatre performances.

She was selected as a 2021 ALA Girls State delegate along with being a member of the National Society of High School Scholars. Ally enjoys skiing and playing tennis.

She is a member of the First United Methodist Church in Newport and enjoys meeting with her youth group and performing various community service acts. Finally, above all Ally loves spending time with family and friends.

Sophia Marie Rouleau is the daughter of Nikki Coggins.

Sophia is a senior at Cocke County High School where she is a member of the BETA Club, a four year Varsity Basketball Cheerleader and Varsity Football Cheerleader, National Honor Society member and Homecoming Queen.

Sophia is employed as a floral designer and artist. She has also been a member of Mu Alpha theta for three years. Sophia also serves as the assistant cheer coach for the CCMS Squad. She has been an Honor Roll student for her entire scholastic career.

Karlie Souder is the daughter of Steve and Julie Souder.

Karlie is a senior at Cocke County High School where she has played varsity soccer for four years, serving as captain the last two years. She is also a four year member of the CCHS track team.

Karlie is a member of the Big Red Fire Choir and enjoyed performing the “The Greatest Showman” this past spring. She was selected as a Girl State Delegate and is a member of the ACT 30 Plus Club. Karlie is a member of the National Honor Society, the Beta Club, and the Fellowship of Christian Athletes.

She enjoys singing in the choir and participating in youth activities such as Operation Christmas Child at her church, First Free Will Baptist Church.

The Teen Board of Knoxville is a private, non-profit organization solely for grades 9-12, with adult help. Its purpose is to get teenagers to work and take the lead in civic and welfare projects, and to lift their social and moral life to higher standards. Last year over 10,500 hours were given to civic and welfare projects for charitable organizations.

After 61 years, adults have seen results of this work in the good leadership in colleges and universities shown by our former members. By learning to help those less fortunate at this age, in turn they have helped themselves develop a public and civic responsibility they are carrying on as adults.

This Presentation Dance is a reward for those local girls and boys who have completed their hours of service.

Saturday, August 21, the weekend starts with practice and brunch, followed by the Mayor’s dinner, honoring the presentee’s and other important dignitaries. The evening of August 21 continues with the presentation of the presentees and dance at the Knoxville Civic Coliseum. Following the presentation is a black–tie reception.


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City audit report shows no findings

NEWPORT—At Tuesday’s regularly scheduled meeting, the City of Newport Board received a clean letter in their audit report for the 2019-20 fiscal year. Frank McDaniel and Haley Slagle of Brown, Jake, and McDaniel in Knoxville presented their report of the audit, sharing no findings.

“This is several years in a row that you’ve been able to accomplish a clean report all the way through…We know the circumstances and we appreciate your efforts,” McDaniel said.

Before the meeting was called to order, the board heard a presentation from Community Development Director Gary Carver regarding draft recommendations for sidewalks, crosswalks, bike lanes and other infrastructure in the downtown area.

Similar to the “Complete Streets” presentation from July’s meeting, this presentation addressed a few major problem areas for pedestrians and bikers, such as East Main Street.

Recommendations included replacing the diagonal on street parking behind the courthouse with parallel parking, installing crosswalks across the railroad tracks, and removal of Broadway’s on street parking to widen lanes and allow for shared roads for bikes.

Following the presentation, the board approved July’s minutes and moved on to hear a communication from City Administrator James Finchum.

Finchum shared that one city employee had tested positive for COVID-19, and a few more were in quarantine. He stated that the employee vaccination rate was still around 40%, “which is not very good out of 125-130 employees,” Finchum added.

Finchum went on to disclose an issue regarding actions taken by the Cocke County Rescue Squad with respect to the city’s participation in Tennessee Association of Rescue Squads.

“I told them, ‘If this costs the City of Newport money, then my recommendation is going to be that that money come out of your pocket, not mine,’ because we give them $12,000 a year of free money,” Finchum told the board.

Finchum went on to discuss the City’s per-diem travel reimbursement for meals. According to Finchum, the money has not been increased in 10-12 years. He told the board that, with their approval, he would research and possibly bring a recommendation to increase the designated per-diem amount.

The audit report followed Finchum’s communication. After the audit report, Gary Carver spoke to the board concerning the first reading of an amendment to the municipal code that would add a chapter to restrict yard and garage sales to weekends and to disallow sales on consecutive weekends.

Carver explained that he had no intent to recommend any sort of patrol to look for consecutive yard sales, but rather that the amendment would be a tool to prevent perpetual yard sales and to give the city a way to help people affected by sales in their areas.

“I don’t know how much traffic we’ll get on this, but… you have a lot of people who are upset when something like that happens, and now we’ll have something we can do about it,” Carver said.

The board approved the first reading by a roll call vote.

The board also approved a plan of service to annex a property into the city, a contract amendment for the city storm drain project, and application for the Public Entity Partner Safety Grant.

Following those items, the Cocke County Partnership spoke to the board to request a special events permit for a concert on September 18, which was approved.

The next item was the consideration of sale of property on 119 North Woodlawn Avenue. The city had received unofficial offers from two interested parties, and the board approved Gary Carver to move forward in entertaining official bids from the parties.

Finally the board approved renewal of the city’s annual paving contract and salt bid.


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County School Board sets scoring percentages for TNReady/EOC exams
  • Updated

COCKE COUNTY—County Board of Education members met Thursday evening to discuss several items, including scoring percentages for TNReady tests and end of course (EOC) exams.

Last year the board voted to set the percentage at 0% for grades three through eight due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Dr. Amanda Waites, Cocke County Schools Curriculum Supervisor, told the board that percent would not suffice in the new school year.

“The State said we can’t have the percent at zero this year for all grades,” Waits said.

“As a board you need to decide what percent you want these tests to count towards students overall grades.”

According to State law, the allowable weighted note for grades 3-5 is 0-25%, grades 6-8 is 10-15% and EOC exams allow for 15-25%.

Prior to the pandemic the school district’s percentages were set at 0%, 10% and 15% respectively. The board voted unanimously to keep the 2019 percentages for the new school year.

Another item they approved was a change in life insurance providers for school system employees.

The district was using Met Life, but Casey Kelley, Assistant Director of Schools, said the customer service provided by the company was “less than what we expected.”

Tres Carter with American Fidelity discussed the company’s options for district employees. Cafeteria workers in the county already use the company, and Carter said the district could save $4,600 by switching all employees to American Fidelity. The vote to change providers was unanimously approved.

A long list of requests were approved for educational materials and intervention programs using ESSER (Elementary and Secondary School Emergency Relief) federal funds.

The district received $15 million in round three of the federal funding. The funds are being used for COVID related improvements and updates to facilities, in addition to educational items.

On Thursday, the board approved more than $392,000 in expenditures using ESSER funds.

The board will meet again on Tuesday, August 24 for a special called meeting at 6 p.m. Board members will need to provide their approval for documentation concerning ESSER 3.0 dollars, and they will also develop a budget for the remaining funds.


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