Spotlight on: West Georgia Auburn Club
Location: Troup, Harris, and Meriwether Counties, GA
Auburn Alumni Association Board Mentor: Kathleen Saal '83
Q. What is your club’s biggest event?
Each May we hold our annual scholarship banquet and fundraiser for the Charles D Hudson Memorial Scholarship Fund. We usually have over 200 attend. This past May, David Housel was our motivational speaker and Pat Dye helped with our live auction. The event was catered by C’sons – a fabulous restaurant in Downtown LaGrange, owned by Mr. Hudson's son and grandson, and held at Del’avant – our downtown event center which was renovated by funds from the Fuller E. Callaway Foundation. We raised that night over $10,000 just from the auction.
Q. How many members make up your Auburn club?
We have over 1600 on our list from Heard, Meriweather and Troup Counties of which approximately 580 are members of AAA.
Q. Tell us about your scholarships.
In 2007 a scholarship to honor Charles D. Hudson on his 80th birthday was established by our club. We also received a generous matching donations challenge of $500,000 from Fuller E. Callaway Foundation. Auburn University Foundation manages the scholarship fund and each year our club adds funds raised, which are then matched, to this endowment fund. We are well on our way to reaching our $1 million dollar goal with over $700,000 raised to date. Auburn awards a student from our area a Charles D. Hudson Memorial Scholarship each year for 2/3 of out-of-state
ition and fees. Our scholarship fund pays 1/3 and Auburn waives 1/3 which in effect brings tuition cost down for the family to in-state tuition Offering this type of scholarship to an out-of-state student is huge! We are looking at increasing the number of scholarships awarded as the fund grows. Mr. Hudson has since passed away but his legacy now lives on. He loved
Auburn and would be so proud to know students from our area are able to attend Auburn because of this scholarship
Q. What new events can your club expect this year?
We have plans to add two new events this year. In October we want to gather at Pine Hill Cemetery for the bi-annual lantern tour. Lots of history and interesting facts. And in November we will be having the AU Cappella group come to our area to entertain us. Both of these events will be tied to learning how our communities are so closely related – only one degree of separation between Auburn and all three counties in our club. You will have to attend the events to learn how and why!
Q. Susan, what appealed to you about running for club president?
I've known since coming on the board four years ago that I would be in line for president. We also have the next two presidents waiting in the wings! All presidents before me have been great leaders and set the standards high. Being able to participate behind the scenes and having time to learn all the requirements is something I can say our club does well, thus assuring that in the future we won't have any down years. We also keep all of our former presidents involved and of course have fun along the way - after all it is Auburn we are talking about!