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08.27.2013

40 Under 40 Spotlight: R. Patrick Lucas (BS ’98)

When R. Patrick Lucas (BS ’98) was named a Truman Scholar in 1997, former UGA President Charles Knapp invited his family to a private dinner in the Presidential Dining Room. The accomplished student leader was amazed by the personal attention, but appreciated the invitation for another reason – it was the first time his parents would share a meal since they divorced when Lucas was six. Since that special dinner, his father has passed away, but the memory still warms his heart today.

Being named one of only 70 Truman Scholars that year was not Lucas’s only accomplishment or favorite memory while he was a UGA student. He was a member of the Mortar Board Honor Society, Blue Key Honor Society, Arch Society and Leadership UGA. He was a tour guide at the UGA Visitors Center, a 1998 UGA Outstanding Senior Leader, and was named to the 1996 USA Today All USA Academic First Team (one of 20 in the country).

Lucas’s campus leadership experience launched him into a successful medical career. After graduating from UGA in 1998, he attended Medical College of Georgia. He then began his residency at Wake Forest University’s North Carolina Baptist Hospital.

In 2005, Dr. Lucas joined Hawthorne Medical Associates here in Athens, and was made a full partner two years later. In addition to being the primary care physician for approximately 2,500 patients, Lucas also served as the Chief of Internal Medicine Division at Athens Regional Medical Center from 2009 to 2013. In 2012, he became the president of the Crawford W. Long Medical Society, the Athens-area medical professional society.

Louise Hill, who nominated Lucas for this honor, has watched the young leader grow through her involvement with the Georgia 4-H program. In 2011, though, her friendship with him evolved into a patient-physician relationship.

“I was the beneficiary of Dr. Lucas’s amazing care in 2011 when a rare spinal condition caused me to become paralyzed overnight. Not only did he treat me while I was at Athens Regional Medical Center, but he orchestrated my transfer to Atlanta’s Shepherd Center and continued to communicate with me regularly during my two months there,” says Hill. “He has been instrumental in my adapting to life in a wheelchair. My Shepherd Center physician and physical therapist often commented on how fortunate I was to be the patient of such an outstanding physician and compassionate individual.”

Lucas’s compassion extends beyond his professional duties, though. In 2010, the alumnus co-founded the Northeast Georgia branch of Compassionate Care Hospice (CCH). As its medical director, Lucas helps provide end of life care at a higher level of quality than what had been typically offered in the area. CCH has served more than 240 patients and their families since it began.

In his free time, Lucas volunteers as a physician at Mercy Health Center, a Sunday School teacher at Ashford Memorial Methodist Church, and youth basketball and baseball coach.

Dr. Patrick Lucas has left his mark on so many in Northeast Georgia through his professional and volunteer efforts. I am proud to call him a Georgia Bulldog and a member of the 40 Under 40 Class of 2013.

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02.03.2016

Alumnus Spotlight: Peter Conlon (BBA '75)

One of the biggest attractions to the Atlanta music scene is its annual music festival, Music Midtown. From mainstream pop artists to rising rock bands, Music Midtown offers the crowds that gather performances from a wide variety of artists. For Peter Conlon (BBA '75), one of two founders of the festival and president of Peter Conlon Presents, this was the overall goal: to create an event fit for attendees of all music tastes and genres.

Conlon graduated from Georgia with a bachelor’s degree in international business in 1975. During his four years as an undergraduate student, he was a member of University Union where he first began booking rock concerts that featured artists such as Jethro Tull and the Allman Brothers. He attended law school for a short period of time after graduation, but then took a risk and dropped out to work as an intern for the Carter presidential campaign, a risk that ended up paying off through a victory.

Peter continued to work for Jimmy Carter throughout his presidential term. His position required that he help set up benefit concerts for the president. In 1982, Conlon partnered with Alex Cooley to begin his career in the music industry.

Music Midtown at Piedmont Park

After working many years booking concerts, the pair founded Music Midtown in 1994, inspired by the New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Festival. After having to pull the plug on the event in 2005 due to low sales, the festival was reintroduced in 2011 and now takes up several stages across Piedmont Park, hosts more than 30 different artists, and attracts attendees from all over the nation. Moreover, since the festival’s relaunch, it has generated $50 million for the local economy each year.

Congratulations to Peter and best wishes for the continued success of Music Midtown! 

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02.01.2016

Alumna Spotlight: Devin Clower (BFA ’08)

Anyone family with downtown Athens and its eclectic variety of shops is surely familiar with Frontier. Since opening nearly 20 years ago, the store has connected local artists with community members by providing a venue for them to showcase and sell their work. 

UGA alumna Devin Clower (BFA '08) took ownership of the store three years ago. Her background in interior design helped her with the introduction of custom framing and redesigning the store layout.

The store’s motto, “All for the heart and home,” is reflected in the unique gifts that you can find at the store. Devin has worked hard to fulfill the motto, and through her leadership, the store has grown into a local favorite.

Congratulations on your hard work, Devin!

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01.29.2016

UGA awards the President’s Medal

On January 27, the UGA President’s Medal was awarded to Francis “Abit” Massey (BBA ’49) and the late Jane Seddon Willson. This honor recognizes extraordinary support and contributions to individuals that have made a tremendous impact in the lives of students and staff. Through them, the university is able to continue to push forward to greater heights in the realm of academia.

Francis "Abit" Massey (BBA '49)

Abit served as the president of the UGA Alumni Association’s Board of Directors from 1991-1993. Throughout his career, he served in the roles of head of the Georgia Department of Economic Development and executive director of the Georgia Poultry Federation. Currently, he is serving on the board of the UGA Real Estate Foundation, Georgia Research Foundation, and is an emeritus trustee of the UGA Foundation. Moreover, Abit has received numerous medals throughout his lifetime that include the 1986 UGA Alumni Merit Award and the Harold E. Ford Lifetime Achievement Award from the U.S. Poultry and Egg Association.

During her lifetime, Jane served as a member of on the Arts and Sciences Advisory Board, the Arts and Sciences Dean’s Council, the Franklin College Advisory Board, the UGA Research Foundation, the Honors Program and Advisory Board, the Georgia Museum of Art Board of Advisors, and she served as an emerita trustee of the UGA Research Foundation. In 2004, she endowed the William Harry Willson Distinguished Chair of Business in honor of her husband and later on, she created the Willson International Honors Scholars Program for students in the university’s Honors Program. Jane was honored with a Doctor of Laws degree in 2006, one of the highest accolades granted to any individual that is a part of the Bulldog community, and in 2008, she was inducted into the Crystal Arch Society in recognition of her passion for giving back to the university.


 

The late Jane Willson 

 “We are honored to recognize two great Georgians for helping to improve our state and strengthen the university,” said President Morehead. “Through their influential vision and tremendous generosity, both Abit Massey and the late Jane Willson have had a profound impact on UGA, and their contributions will continue to benefit the university for generations to come.”

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