Gadsden State Alumni Association honors five with annual awards
In December, the Gadsden State Community College Alumni Association honored three members of the faculty and staff and two community supporters with annual awards. They were presented by Dr. Kathy Murphy, president of the College; Heather Brothers New, president of the alumni association; and Becky Watson, former resource development officer.
“It is an honor and privilege to honor five deserving individuals who support Gadsden State through their work as faculty and staff or through their commitment and service as volunteers,” New said. “We are working hard to grow our organization, and it can only be done through the hard work of our volunteers, faculty, staff and students. We appreciate the support.”
Three awards are historically presented to members of the faculty and staff — Outstanding Support Staff Award, Outstanding Technical Faculty Award and Outstanding Academic Faculty Award. Each winner received a certificate as well as an engraved brick that will be placed in the College’s courtyard located on the Wallace Drive Campus.
Tim Carter, software analyst in Information Technology Services, is the winner of the Outstanding Support Staff Award.
“Tim has been a key player at Gadsden State and is the reason that many software systems and data elements have worked successfully for years,” said Watson during the award announcement.
Carter began his time at Gadsden State as a programmer in 1987. He has been instrumental in the development of many systems, including a records system, and he assisted in the transition to Banner, the access point for student records and information now known as OneACCS. He has served several statewide committees due to his expertise in data management and system report writing, she said.
The winner of the Outstanding Technical Faculty Member is Tarina VanNatta, the instructor for the College’s FAME program located on Gadsden State’s Ayers Campus in Anniston.
“She has grown the program and has had several successful graduates,” Watson said. “She cares about her students and does everything she can to influence them to be successful, productive members in Alabama’s workforce.”
VanNatta accepted the position as an Industrial Automation instructor in 2019 after working for several years in manufacturing as an assembly technician, engineering assistant, electronics lab assistant and maintenance technician. She is a 2011 Summa Cum Laude graduate of Gadsden State and is a member of the Phi Theta Kappa Honors Society and National Technical Honors Society.
Fay Scott is an instructor of Office Administration and Health Information Systems Technology Management. She is the winner of the 2021 Outstanding Academic Faculty Award. Watson said the selection committee was moved by the fact that a student nominated Scott for the award.
“The student said ‘Ms. Scott is an outstanding instructor,’” Watson said. “She goes above and beyond for her students and helps every step of the way. (The student said) Ms. Scott deserves the award because of her kindness and loving soul for her students and their future.”
In the nomination letter, the student said she has become a better person because Scott cheered her on and helped her get through life. She said, “I would not be the person I am today if she had not invested in me in the classroom.”
Two community supporters were honored during the awards presentation with the Distinguished Alumni of the Year Award and the Distinguished Service Award. Each received a certificate and engraved brick as well.
The Distinguished Alumni of the Year Award went to Kaycee Warsham, a 2020 graduate of the Diagnostic Medical Sonography Program at Gadsden State.
“Kaycee has volunteered many hours as a lab assistant for our current DMS students as well as the students working at the Etowah Pregnancy Center,” Watson said.
Warsham also serves as a clinical instructor at Gadsden Regional Medical Center, where she is a registered obstetrics/gynecology sonographer.
“She is always willing to step up and fill a gap where needed to serve her community and Gadsden State students,” Watson said.
The Distinguished Service Award was presented to Mark Condra, the president of the Cardinal Foundation.
“Mark is a wonderful community volunteer and supporter,” Watson said.
Condra is an active member of Gadsden First United Methodist Church. He has served as the chairman of both the Gadsden Cultural Arts Foundation and the membership committee for The Chamber of Gadsden/Etowah. He has served as a member of the District Committee for the Boy Scouts and the project coordinator for a four-church campaign to serve the community in school clean-up projects.
“Mark has done a wonderful job in leading the foundation and helping grow its assets,” Watson said. “He is a true leader in every way, and we are immensely honored and proud to recognize him in this momentous way.”
For more information on the Alumni Association, please visit GadsdenState.edu/Alumni.