Saturday, Feb. 10, 2007, Cherokee County educator, businesswoman and civic leader Marguerite T. Cline, Class of 1958, received the College's 2007 Evelyn J. Gordy Alumni Loyalty Award.
In accepting the alumni loyalty award, Cline shared the story of how she came to Reinhardt. "One of the luckiest days of my life was when, as a senior at Sparta High School, my teacher asked me to pick up a piece of paper off the floor," she said. She filled out the postcard requesting information from Reinhardt, in part because it already had a stamp on it, she said laughing. "I was so surprised when I got a letter back from J.R. Burgess [then president of Reinhardt]. That's what started my life in Waleska, Ga. Not only did I begin an affiliation with Reinhardt and have many other opportunities, I gained a new family and lots of friends, whom I love dearly," she said.
Dalton, Ga., businessman C. Kenneth White, Class of 1961, was named the 2007 Alumnus of the Year. White praised Reinhardt's growth as he accepted the alumni award. "During my 23 years on the Board of Trustees, I have made Reinhardt College and the students' welfare my top priorities," he said. 'With the development of facilities, athletics and academic programs and equipment, Reinhardt offers today's students the opportunity to receive the best education available at any private institution in the state. Also, during my period on the Board, Reinhardt has successfully transformed itself from a junior college to a highly successful senior college. I am privileged to accept this award, and I appreciate your confidence in me."
Later in the day, the College's student government association, SGA, held a reception recognizing the group's 50th anniversary. Current SGA President Jordan Turner of Canton, Ga., announced that the two annual SGA outstanding member awards had been renamed for Cline and G. Dennis Harris, Jr., Class of 1958, of Stone Mountain, Ga.
Turner announced the renaming of the SGA awards to the standing-room-only crowd of former Reinhardt SGA and Student Activities Council members from the past 50 years. "Each year since 2004 we have recognized a male and female member of SGA with our Golden Eagle Award," he said. 'This award goes to the outstanding student senate member who exemplifies student leadership in every way. They are voted on by their fellow senators. We voted earlier this week to rename these awards for two of our earliest founding members. The Golden Eagle Awards will now be called the Marguerite Thigpen Cline and Dennis Harris Leadership in Action Awards."
Harris said he was surprised and pleased by SGA's decision. "I am most appreciative of the opportunities afforded me by my involvement with Reinhardt," he said. "The Student Government Association has offered many students avenues for leadership growth over the past 50 years. I am highly honored to have this annual award given in my name."
Cline shared similar sentiments. 'It was quite an honor and took me back quite a bit," she said. "It reminded me of what a difference Reinhardt has made in my life."
Homecoming festivities also included baseball, softball and basketball games, an alumni basketball game, reunions for the classes of '37, '47, '57, '67, '77, '87 and '97, special activities for the children of alumni, a homecoming dance, and the crowning of the homecoming king and queen.
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