By Emily Smith, Staff Writer
The very first Armstrong Heroes Night will be taking place in the Student Union Savannah Ballroom on May 1 at 6:30 p.m. This will be a formal dinner where Armstrong will honor three alumni who have given back to the Armstrong community, made an impact in their own communities and successfully pursued a professional career.
“Something that I’ve noticed is that we haven’t been the best at building relationships between students and alumni. You don’t see a mingling pool,” said Student Government Association president Andy Cabistan.
“This is a chance for students to find mentors and maybe future employers.”
The honorees were chosen based on their contributions to Armstrong as well as their pursuit of a professional career. Honorees include Otis Johnson, Don Waters and Calvain Culberson.
Johnson is the former mayor of Savannah and was the first African-American to enroll in Armstrong Junior College. He has made many contributions to the city of Savannah, including being Executive Director of the Chatham Savannah Youth Futures Authority.Johnson has also received the Distinguished Alumnus Award from Armstrong, which recognizes a graduate that has achieved distinction through community involvement and professional expertise. He also went on to become the first black man from Savannah to attend the University of Georgia.
Don Waters, one of Armstrong’s biggest donors, is the CEO of Brasseler USA. He earned a B.B.A. in Accounting from Armstrong. Waters has an extensive legacy of community involvement and was appointed by Governor Nathan Deal in March 2013 to represent the First Congressional District of Georgia as a member of the Board of Regents for the University System of Georgia.
Culberson is the current head baseball coach at Armstrong. He was inducted into the Armstrong Athletics Hall of Fame in 2011 for his outstanding playing career. He played professionally from 1989-95, reaching as high as AAA Pawtucket in the Boston Red Sox organization and AAA Indianapolis in the Cincinnati Reds organization. He made it to the World Series as a student at Armstrong. Besides coaching, he takes on the extra jobs and responsibilities of maintenance and recruitment.
These three distinguished alumni are being honored not only because they are committed to giving back to the Armstrong community, but because they are advocates for social responsibility. “These three heroes have done so much for Armstrong,” Cabistan said.
There are 150 seats available and the event is open to all students who RSVP beforehand. Students received an email in regards to reserving a spot if they are interested. This is a wonderful opportunity for students to talk with alumni about their experiences, careers and how to get a job. It is expected that this prestigious event will be the start of a new tradition at Armstrong. It is sure to create a new norm of students and alumni communicating. Being able to honor and gain knowledge from respectable Armstrong alumni is a wonderful opportunity for students and will surely make the Armstrong family grow closer.