Stratford Academy Announces 2017 Alumni Awards Recipients
In 1986, Stratford inaugurated the Alumni Award recognitions. Since that time, alumni have been recognized during the school's commencement exercises.
The Distinguished Alumnus/a Award for Outstanding Career Achievement goes to an individual who has made outstanding contributions through his/her vocation or who otherwise deserves to be recognized for outstanding achievement in some field or endeavor. Alumni in the fields of law, medicine, education, business, military, ministry and the arts have been recognized for their career achievements and excelling in their chosen fields and making a difference in the world around them. The 2017 recipient of this award is Dr. George McCommon. George has distinguished himself both in the field of veterinary medicine as well as in service to his country as a member of the Georgia Army National Guard. Following his graduation from Stratford in 1983, George attended the University of Georgia pursuing a Bachelor of Science in Agriculture. He was admitted a year early to the UGA College of Veterinary Medicine, completing his fourth year of undergraduate studies at the same time he began his first year of vet school. During vet school, he was chosen for a two-month externship in Newmarket, England, working with the veterinary surgeons of Queen Elizabeth II. Following graduation from UGA College of Veterinary Medicine in 1990, he worked as an equine veterinarian at racetracks in Delaware, Maryland and Florida. He and his wife, Disa, then returned to Macon to begin his equine veterinary practice and to welcome their son, William (Stratford Class of 2009). He has served the Middle Georgia area in his field including nine years as the veterinarian for the City of Macon as well as providing emergency services to all types of animals. He provided veterinary services for the horse athletes competing in the 1996 Olympics (Atlanta) and was the first animal disaster shelter director in conjunction with the American Red Cross during Hurricane Floyd. He was recognized by the State of Georgia with the Humane Association of Georgia's Humanitarian Award in 2002 in recognition for his many efforts.
Dr. McCommon currently serves as Department Chair and Tenured Professor of the Veterinary Science programs at Fort Valley State University where he has been a member of the faculty since 2001. UGA recognized Dr. McCommon in 2010 with the College of Veterinary Medicine's Distinguished Alumni Award.
The Alumni Service Award also dates back to 1986. The award was formed to recognize service to Stratford Academy by its alumni. Volunteer service to the school has been an important part of our growth and success, and our alumni have always been a critical source of this kind of volunteer service. The recipient of this year's award is Eric Hefner, Class of 1983. You could say that Eric's service to Stratford started before he even graduated as he served as his class president his senior year. Since then, Eric has served Stratford in many capacities including the Board of Trustees where he has held numerous leadership roles, including Board Chair, Treasurer and Chair of the Advancement Committee. Eric has been a longtime Booster Club supporter and continues to be an active athletic program volunteer, including coaching and the Friday night voice of the Eagles for Stratford football. He has been a major force on the recent Excellence Never Rests capital campaign that has seen a new lower school, science center, student activities center, tennis complex, and loop road built. Eric and his wife, Margaret, have two children who are Stratford alumni, Jonathan '14 and Conner '16, and have two children who are currently attending Stratford, Graham '20 and Reynolds '26.
Recipients were recognized during the 2017 commencement exercises on May 27, at the Macon City Auditorium.
The Distinguished Alumnus(a) Award for Outstanding Career Achievement
NOMINATE AN ALUMNUS/A FOR THE DISTINGUISHED ALUMNUS/A AWARD
The Distinguished Alumnus/a Award for Outstanding Career Achievement was inaugurated in 1986. It goes to an alumnus/alumna who has made an outstanding contribution through his/her vocation or who otherwise deserves to be recognized for outstanding achievement in some field or endeavor. Alumni in the fields of law, medicine, education, business, ministry and the arts have been recognized for their career achievements - excelling in their chosen fields and making a difference in the world around them.
Alumni Service Award
NOMINATE AN ALUMNUS/A FOR THE ALUMNI SERVICE AWARD
The Alumni Service Award also goes back to 1986. The award was formed to recognize service to Stratford Academy by its alumni. Volunteer service to the school has been an important part of our growth and success, and our alumni have always been a critical source of this kind of volunteer service.
|Year||Distinguished Alumnus(a)||Alumni Service|
|1986||Dr. Jesse Haynes Pate Skene '71||Loyd Hall Black, Jr. '62|
|1987||Thomas Edgar Greene, III '65||Catharine Burns Liles '62|
|1988||Dr. Raymond Avery Moody, Jr. '62||Vivian James Adams, Jr. '65|
|1989||Edward Roe Stamps, IV '62||Josephine Barker Lamb '64|
|1990||Dr. James F. Smith '65||Maurice C. Barnett '71|
|1991||Henry Lee Barfield, II '64||Martha Williams Berg '70|
|1992||Dr. Katharyn Jordan Ouzts '64||Charles Andrew Lawson '64|
|1993||Thomas Earl DuPree, Jr. '70|
Dr. Richard Liipfert and
Dawn Smisson Liipfert '73
|1994||Dr. Stephen Lee Sigal '76||Claire McCommon Smith '71|
|1995||---||Helen Clark Stewart '74|
|1996||David Wagner Jones '70||Hazel Burns Struby '70|
|1997||---||Veronica White Brooks '66|
|1998||Beverly Baldwin Martin '73||Cynde Martin Dickey '73|
|1999||---||Kenneth D. Sams '69|
|2000||Robert A. B. Reichert '66||Virginia Monfort Rabun '77|
|2001||---||Lindsey Owens Stevens '77|
|2002||Charlton McMillan '70||Dr. William V. Argo '72|
|2003||Loyd Hall Black, Jr. '62||---|
|2004||James A. Hatcher '70||Robert A. Bowen, III '73|
|2005||Thomas Shealy '80||Nelle Childs Barnett '74|
|2006||Charles Andrew Lawson '64||Isabelle Heard Sullivan '75|
|2007||Laudis H. "Rick" Lanford '76||Albert W. McKay, Jr. '70|
|2008||---||James C. Hinson, Sr. '76|
|2009||Robert Rabun Merck '76||David Paul Kempa '76|
|2010||K. Roger Holliday '76||Summer Smisson Neel '79|
|2011||Dr. Guerry Peavy '67||Wimberly Dennis Treadwell '74|
|2012||Jeff Battcher '79||Elizabeth Boswell Avant '85|
|2013||Jeffrey Henderson '76||Angela Maddox Hicks '76|
|2014||Mike Kaplan '71||Robin Lee Parker '83 Greg Parker '84|
|2015||Tracy Garner '77||Johnny Peterson '81|
|2016||Frank Willingham '63||Bill Buzzell '70|
|2017||Dr. George McCommon '83||Eric Hefner '83|
Both awards are presented on an annual basis if candidates are deemed worthy. All graduates of Stratford Academy are eligible for these awards. The recipient(s) will be appropriately recognized at commencement exercises.