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01.30.2014

UGA celebrates 229th anniversary as first state-chartered institution of higher education

When the Georgia General Assembly signed the University of Georgia Charter on January 27, 1785, it not only established the first state-chartered institution of higher learning, but also created a model of public higher education that the rest of the nation would soon follow.

Each year, in honor of this historic act, the UGA Alumni Association hosts a series of events and giveaways for students, and a lecture that is open to the public.

This year's Founders Week festivities proved to be especially challenging as winter weather hit Athens at noon on Tuesday and closed the university until midday today. My fearless team here at the UGA Alumni Association marched onward, executing another successful series of events.

On Monday, students were invited to a 229th birthday party for UGA hosted by the Student Alumni Association. On Tuesday, the 12th annual Founders Day Lecture was held in the UGA Chapel - concluding just in time for the university to close at 3:30 p.m. This year's lecture was presented by Dr. Loch K. Johnson, Regents and Meigs Professor in the School of Public and International Affairs. His lecture was titled " Accountability in the Shadowy World of Intelligence." It was an honor and a pleasure to have Dr. Johnson serve as the Founder’s Day lecturer this year.

Just a few minutes prior to the lecture, the inaugural President's Medals were presented. The medal recognizes extraordinary contributions by former employees who have supported deserving students, advanced research and inspired community leaders to enhance Georgians' quality of life. The recipients of the 2014 President’s Medals were Dr. Louise McBee and the late Dr. Thomas Dyer (MA '72, PHD '75). McBee is a former state representative who served the university for 25 years as dean of women, dean of students and vice president for academic affairs. Dyer filled a number of important roles on campus throughout his time with UGA, including vice president for instruction and provost.

When classes resumed this morning, the Student Alumni Association didn't miss a beat and hosted the annual 100 Days Until Graduation event in the Tate Center Grand Hall until 3:00 p.m. This one-stop shop for commencement-related information and materials will be open again tomorrow from 10:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. I encourage graduating seniors to stop by - did I mention there are giveaways?

As I look back on the impressive history of UGA, I can't help but get excited for all that is still to come. Here's to another 229 years, UGA - HAPPY BIRTHDAY!

Click here to learn more about Founders Day.                                                

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12.19.2014

Brothers make business a family affair

How do two brothers from tiny Hopeful, Georgia, manage to take Atlanta’s entrepreneurial spirit to a new level? Well, ask the Shirah brothers, Benjie (BSFR ’07, MFR ’10) and Jamey (BBA ’10). Since leaving Athens, the business-savvy brothers have embarked on a number of successful endeavors, including The Ivy Buckhead and Atlanta-based companies Kill Cliff – The Recovery Drink™ and Vida-Flo: The Hydration Station. Now, the brothers are heading in a new direction - your feet. 

This fall, Benjie and Jamey launched their latest project, JL The Brand, a flair-filled sock company. Together with friends, the brothers are working to add a little jazz to the mundane black and blue men’s suit with top-notch socks. 

Designed with unique patterns and colors, JL The Brand offers affordable high quality socks that add a subtle yet sophisticated pop to any outfit. JL The Brand socks are the perfect gift for any guy this holiday season! 

With the Shirah brothers’ keen eye for business development, these young alumni are sure make a lasting mark on Atlanta's entrepreneurial scene. 

Keep up with the Shirah's businesses on social media: 

@theivybuckhead
@govidaflo
@jlthebrand

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12.18.2014

40 Under 40 honoree to direct UGA’s state government relations

Tobin R. "Toby" Carr (BBA '01, BSAE '01) was named associate vice president for government relations and director of state governmental relations at UGA. Vice President for Government Relations J. Griffin Doyle announced the appointment of Carr, who currently is planning director for the Georgia Department of Transportation.

Carr was appointed to his current DOT post in 2012, a position in which he has led a team of some 30 planning professionals in guiding strategic planning and project budget documents that direct state and federal resources to fund transportation projects. He graduated from the UGA Honors Program in 2001 with bachelor's degrees in business administration and agricultural engineering. Before assuming his DOT post, Carr served as Deal's transportation policy adviser and the governor's liaison to the Georgia House of Representatives. He previously was director of Deal's gubernatorial transition committee.

An active student leader while at UGA, Carr served as president of the Interfraternity Council and was named to Sphinx, Omicron Delta Kappa, Blue Key, Mortar Board, Phi Kappa Phi and the Arch Society. He currently serves on the UGA College of Engineering Alumni Advisory Board and was recognized in 2014 as a UGA 40 Under 40 and as the 2012 Blue Key Outstanding Young Alumnus Award winner.

"I'm humbled and thrilled to serve my alma mater in this role," Carr said. "I'm very grateful to Gov. Deal for his support of this new endeavor and to President Morehead and Vice President Doyle for giving me the opportunity to advance the mission of UGA."

Carr will serve as primary liaison between the university and state government officials, representing the university in all matters involving legislators, agencies, departments, and the other higher education institutions of Georgia. The transition will occur in early January.

Click here to read more. 

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12.11.2014

UGA’s Thank-a-Teacher Program

Did a teacher at UGA enrich your life or create a spark that inspired you to pursue your dreams? Was there a professor or teaching assistant that pushed you to do your best and helped you discover your passion for a certain subject? 

Now is the time to let that teacher - and the university community - know how grateful you are for their effect on your life. UGA's Center for Teaching and Learning invites current UGA students and alumni to particpate in the Thank-a-Teacher program.

What is Thank-a-Teacher? It is a program that allows students and alumni to express gratitude for teachers who have impacted their lives in a profound and meaningful way. If a teacher (professor, instructor, teaching assistant) made a positive contribution to your experience at UGA, please consider sending them a brief note. You may choose to remain anonymous or have your name attached to the note. 

You will be asked to fill out a simple form and acknowledge your appreciation for your teacher's work, dedication and extra effort. Share a simple thank you or an anecdote to let that teacher know what you enjoyed about their class and why it was important to you. 

Click here to complete the Thank-a-Teacher form

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