Morris Brown News 10-27-08


MorrisBrown College and its National Aumni AssociationHost the Inaugural Tower of Strength Awards Gala

(Atlanta, GA (October 27, 2008).  Celebrating 127 years of continuous service in educating students, Morris Brown College and its National Alumni Association hosted the inaugural TOWER OF STRENGTH Awards Gala (formally known as the Legacy Awards) on Saturday, October 17, 2008 in the John H. Lewis Complex on the Morris Brown Campus.  This black-tie occasion was a “Circle of Friends” fund raising event for Morris Brown College student scholarships.

“Morris Brown College has re-branded its scholarship fundraising gala to reflect the significant and prominence that Fountain Hall and the Morris Brown Bell Tower played in the moral and ethical fabric of our great institution.  This tower at Fountain Hall represents a symbol of struggle and resolve for Steward Wiley and Wesley John Gaines who were divinely led to call for the establishment of Morris Brown College, the only higher education institution in the State of Georgia founded by African Americans for African Americans. The President’s Leadership Award is named for these pioneers,” said George Hopkins, President of the National Alumni Association of Morris Brown.  The Steward Wiley/Wesley John Gaines President’s Leadership Award, presented by the Morris Brown President, Dr. Stanley Pritchett, was given to Reverend Herman “Skip” Mason, the 33rd General President-Elect of Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity, and Georgia State Senator Tommie W. Williams (District 19).

“Fountain Hall also represents a center of thought provoking learning and academic freedom for thousands of professors who have taught here at Morris Brown. We have named several of our awards after these professors.  Fountain Hall further represents a ‘Haven for all hungry souls’ for those students seeking a refuge of learning,” Hopkins added.  The Tower of Strength Awards were presented to the following:

  • The Drs. Charles L. Harper / Ann S. Cochran Award for Distinguished Achievement in Education was presented to Dr. H. Patrick Swygert, President Emeritus of Howard University;
  • The Oscar Burnett Award for Distinguished Achievement in Business was presented to  Ms. Erica Qualls, General Manager of the Atlanta Marriott Marquis Hotel and Mr. George H. Ivey, Jr. land developer and community leader
  • The Dr. G. Johnson Hubert/Cleophas R. Johnson Award for Distinguished Achievement in Music went to The Georgia Mass Choir;
  • The Drs. Griffin /Hightower/Billings Award for Distinguished Achievement in Science was presented to Dr. William Lynn Weaver, President of the Atlanta Medical Association;
  • The Bishop Henry McNeil Turner Award for Distinguished Achievement in Religion was presented to Bishop William P. DeVeaux, Presiding Prelate, Sixth Episcopal District of the A.M.E. Church.

Honorary Chairs for the Tower Of Strength Gala, well known throughout the Atlanta community  included Ms. Johnnie Booker, The Coca-Cola Company; Dr. Gloria Campbell D’Hue,  Atlanta Center of Dermatology; and Mr. Richard Dent, The Mall West End.  Entertainment for the evening included the Morris Brown Singers led by Dr. Gregory McPherson, the MBC Jazz Consortium that featured The Reverend Dr. Dwight Andrews and Ken Ford, Atlanta’s own internationally know jazz violinist, closed the evening of celebration and reflections on the legacy of Morris Brown College.

Ms. Victoria Jenkins, Vice President of the National Alumni Association and chair of the event said, “We are very pleased with the participation of our alumni and the hard work coming from so many. We turned the John Lewis Complex into a wonderful venue, brought our friends back to Morris Brown’s  campus so they could see our students and our campus, honored some very worthy and committed individuals who have served this community, and, most of all, raise funds to help our alma mater and our students.  We are thankful.”

Media Contact:
Bunnie Jackson Ransom
404-226-8000 (cell) 404-505-8188 (office)

Rhonda Copenny