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Emma Lloyd says coming back to Buford in 2020 after 11 years away from the city where she had lived from the age of 11 until she graduated from Buford High School in 2009 just made sense. 

“It made so much sense to move back to Buford when my husband (Alex) and I were trying to figure out where we wanted to really settle down,” she said. “(I’m) so thankful to be back!” 

A native of Virginia, Emma initially moved with her family — her parents Frank and Stephanie Nolt and brother Patrick (a 2011 graduate of BHS) — to Georgia in 1994. The family then relocated from Sugar Hill to Buford.

“My parents moved us into the district before I was going to be starting middle school,” she recalls. “They both grew up in small towns and really wanted that experience for Patrick and I. I am so thankful that they made that choice. I had such a wonderful experience growing up here and attending Buford City Schools.” 

Emma says most of her favorite memories come from participating in musical theater and chorus, specifically musicals and variety shows. She was also a varsity cheerleader and was crowned homecoming queen her senior year. 

“I was a ballet dancer outside of school and I love being able to showcase my dancing at school,” Emma recalls. “The students in musical theatre and chorus really gave it their all and those shows were the highlights of my high school career. I will always be passionate and have a love for performing arts!” 

While at Buford High School, Emma says she had many wonderful teachers. 

“I would have to say that my favorite was (fine arts/theater teacher) Mrs. (Kimberly) Staples. She was such a great leader and hard worker,” Emma says. “She makes all of her students feel inspired, encouraged, and valued. Our thespian troupe always felt like a true family. I will forever cherish the memories of being in her class.” 

After graduating from BHS, Emma attended two years of college at Brenau University before pursuing other passions — she found herself in the beauty industry working as a hair stylist and educator with Jamison Shaw Hairdressers and Sunlights Balayage. Now a stay-at-home mom to 4-year-old Reynolds and 2-year-old Riley, Emma also works in the realm of social media — she manages Instagram accounts for two local businesses, Honeycomb Boutique Salon and Tchin Tchin Coffee Roasters, both based in Buford. 

“I organically fell into my social media profession while working in the beauty industry,” Emma says. “I was lucky to be given the opportunity and the rest was history.”

Emma is also a social media content creator and influencer, having started the personal social media blog Best of Buford in March 2021 on both Instagram and Facebook platforms. Emma says she created the online space to promote businesses, events and nonprofit organizations in the Buford area with a personal touch.

“One of my favorite parts about being a local content creator is highlighting the incredible businesses in our area and getting to know the owners,” she says. “It is so inspiring to work with such passionate people who are chasing and fulfilling their dreams.

“With Best of Buford, I enjoyed following other local feature influencers in different areas and felt really inspired to do something similar when I moved back to Buford,” she continues. “I love building up a presence of ‘all things Buford’ on Instagram and giving other locals a place to stay in the know and romanticize the great city they live in.” 

Follow @bestofbuford on Instagram and Facebook.

The Buford High School alumni spotlights are made possible by the generosity of the City of Buford. 

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Deanna Allen has served as editor of the North Gwinnett Voice since June 2021. Effective communication and creative design are her passions.

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