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Berry Alumni Council

LOOKING COOL: Members of the Berry Alumni Council take a break from their August meeting to grab a quick group photo in the Ford Archway. They’re sporting sunglasses purchased as part of a fundraiser for Berry women’s soccer.

Jonathan PurserThis summer brought new leadership to the Berry Alumni Association as Frances Richey (83A, 87C) completed her second term as president and handed the reigns to her elected successor, Jonathan Purser (85C). The husband, father, business owner and volunteer immediately got to work, sharing good news about Berry with fellow alumni via periodic e-blasts (look for more in the future!). He also provided leadership for the first Alumni Council meeting of the 2018-19 academic year.

Forty-four Alumni Council members – representing nearly 80 years of Berry history – gathered in August to begin working on specific projects related to alumni engagement, financial support, Berry heritage and culture, and alumni awards. Leading those teams are elected vice presidents Chris Hayes (04C), Jason McMillan (98C), Jennifer Dickey (77A, 80C) and Pat Tutterow Jackson (82C), respectively. Joining them on the Executive Committee are Richey, who now serves as past president, and appointed members Tim Howard (82C), parliamentarian, Emmett Long (98C), chaplain, and Chad Nash (13C), secretary.

Purser is excited about the work ahead, as well as the opportunity he has to serve as a voice on Berry’s behalf.

“Those of us who were privileged to attend Berry were given a precious gift,” he said. “Serving as Alumni Council president is an honor and a small way of giving back to the institution and community that have meant so much to me.”

Watch for more coverage of Alumni Council activities in the year ahead. Click here for a list of current members.

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A leader in forensic drug chemistry research, a learned historian and dedicated Berry servant, an award-winning journalist, and a skilled woodworker and successful entrepreneur topped the list of award winners recognized at Alumni Weekend. The 2018 recipients of Berry’s Distinguished Alumni Awards included:

  • Dr. C. Randall Clark (67C), professor of medicinal chemistry at Auburn University, Distinguished Achievement
  • Dr. Jennifer Dickey (77A, 80C), coordinator of public history program and associate professor at Kennesaw State University, Berry campus preservationist, Distinguished Service
  • Al Christopher (61c), talented craftsman, enterprising founder of several businesses in construction and other fields, Entrepreneurial Spirit
  • Aitana Vargas (03C), Spanish-language journalist and broadcaster, holds master’s degree in journalism from Columbia University, Outstanding Young Alumni
Kay Williams and Tim Howard

Kay Williams, Tim Howard

Other honors presented at Alumni Weekend included the following special distinctions bestowed by the Berry Alumni Association:

  • Tim Howard (82C) – Alumni Council Lifetime Membership
  • Kay Williams – Alumni Association President’s Award

Three classes also earned recognition for reunion giving, including an impressive trifecta by the much-heralded college class of 1958:

  • 1958C – Reunion Cup (percentage attendance), Viking Cup (giving participation) and Ford Cup (dollars given)
  • 1968C –  Martha Cup (percentage increase in giving participation)
  • 1948C – Heritage Cup (increase in planned giving commitments)

Special thanks to the hundreds of alumni and friends who turned out for Alumni Weekend, and congratulations to the classes of 1968A and 1968C, this year’s inductees into Berry’s Golden Guard.

Related Links: Alumni Weekend Class Photos

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