Tag Archives: Karen Holley Horrell

Barry Griswell, left, and Rick Gilbert.

Barry Griswell, left, and Rick Gilbert

Berry’s strong history of executive leadership continued with the election of J. Barry Griswell (71C) as chair and Rick Gilbert (77c) as vice chair of the college’s Board of Trustees. They succeed Karen Holley Horrell (74C) and Cecil B. “Buster” Wright (73C), who continue active service as trustees after completing their second terms as chair and vice chair, respectively.

Griswell, a trustee since 2003, is the retired chairman and CEO of Principal Financial Group and a past winner of the Horatio Alger Distinguished American Award, among his many honors. Gilbert, who has served on the board since 2008, is an entrepreneurial investor in several businesses and co-founder of Atlanticus Holdings Corp. Both are married to Berry alumna, Griswell to the former Michele Irwin (70C) and Gilbert to the former Debra Bourne (76C).

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The rhythmic beat of the Viking Drumline provided the perfect soundtrack as students, faculty, staff, board members, project donors and special guests celebrated the Oct. 17 groundbreaking for Valhalla, including Williams Field, Clark Track and Dickey Field.

“What a great day it is for Berry College,” said President Steve Briggs, addressing the large crowd gathered at the construction site just south of the Cage Center. “It’s an important milestone in our ongoing effort to enhance this amazing campus and to create places of opportunity for students, for our friends and for our community. And like the Cage Center behind us, Valhalla will provide a major venue for recreation, excitement, achievement, participation and just plain fun.”

Taking up shovels were Steve Cage (74C), the Berry trustee whose 2012 lead gift initiated fundraising for Valhalla; Bob (62H) and Kay Williams, whose generosity paved the way for the naming of the stadium field; alumni trustees Bert Clark (82C) and Roger Lusby (79C), who led the successful Clark Track Challenge, and Bert’s wife, Cathy; Dr. Ouida Dickey (50C, FFS), who has joined daughters Jennifer (77A, 80C) and Angela (75A, 79C) in making a challenge gift to name the track and field throws area for the late Garland M. Dickey (42C); Steve and Michelle Tart, football parents and project supporters; Randy Berry and Barry Griswell (71C), trustees and LifeReady Campaign co-chairs, and Barry’s wife Michele (70C), all major donors to the project; and Board of Trustees Chair Karen Holley Horrell (74C), another major contributor to the fundraising effort to build the stadium.

Steve CageIn his remarks, Cage (pictured) noted that Valhalla is “a collaboration of hard work, trust and leadership with the Board of Trustees, Dr. Briggs, faculty and staff, students and donors.” He offered special praise to the Berry president, dedicating the new stadium in his honor, and thanked all those who had made gifts to the project. Groundbreaking coverage.

Christened  “a place for us” by SGA President Paton Roden, Valhalla will provide a new home for Berry’s football and men’s and women’s lacrosse teams when completed in 2015. The stadium and adjacent Dickey Field will also make possible the spring 2016 resumption of full competition in men’s and women’s track and field, in addition to hosting intramural competitions and other large outdoor events. Berry’s service entrance will be closed until construction is completed.

Fundraising for Valhalla is now entering its final phase. Gifts to the project can be made online. If you’d like to double your giving power, make your commitment through the Dickey Field Challenge.

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John Eadie

John Eadie (83C)

John Eadie (83C) has taken on a new leadership role for his alma mater as a member of the Berry College Board of Trustees. He was elected to the board in February after previous service on the Board of Visitors. A product of Berry’s accounting program, John has built a distinguished career as one of the nation’s top financial advisors and wealth managers. He is founder, managing director and CEO of Texas-based Covenant Multifamily Offices. He and wife Elizabeth Webb Eadie (84C) live in San Antonio.

Also in February, the trustees re-elected alumni Karen Holley Horrell (74C) and Cecil B. “Buster” Wright III (73C) to the positions of chair and vice chair, respectively.

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The Berry Alumni Association welcomed a new crop of members at December’s fall commencement ceremony, and Board of Trustees Chair Karen Holley Horrell (74C) was among those on hand to help send Berry’s newest graduates out into the world.

In her remarks, Karen spoke of the gifts – both expected and unexpected – that a college experience can provide. As an example, she cited the late Steve Jobs, who never finished college but spoke passionately about the appreciation a calligraphy course inspired for the grace and beauty of fonts and how that experience contributed to the design of the many Apple devices that now populate our society.

A total of 120 graduates received bachelor’s, master’s or educational specialist degrees during the ceremony, among them Sarah Bridenbaugh (11C), an animal science major who recently interned at the Georgia Aquarium and is now in the Bahamas conducting research as part of a shark lab. Click here to read her story. More commencement coverage.

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