Reinhardt is proud of every student, current and former, and each of their unique stories. Randy Gravley began his higher education at Reinhardt College, receiving an Associate Degree in Education in 1995. He now serves Cherokee County and northern Georgia as President and CEO of Tri-State Communications and Enjoy Magazine, Inc.
Having grown up in the Sutallee community in Cherokee County, Gravley commuted to Reinhardt for two years. He says the college “had an incredible impact on my life both professionally and personally. It prepared me for the professional world in the business I’m in. What I remember most fondly are the professors. They were kind and really cared about your success. They made sure you achieved your education goals and graduated. You weren’t just a number or just a student to them. To this day, that is what is most special to me about Reinhardt.”
After Reinhardt, Gravley earned a degree in secondary education at KSU. He intended to become a high school government teacher and track and soccer coach. But during his college years, he worked part-time at WCHK radio in Canton as a board operator where he was “bit by the radio bug.” He fell in love with working with the business owners and the people in the community. After graduating, he decided teaching would be his backup career to radio.
Gravley continued working at the station learning every aspect possible, worked in sales, and eventually became General Manager. He later left WCHK to become General Manager at WLJA in Jasper. A few years ago, he became President and CEO of Tri-state Communication which owns WLJA and WPGY radio stations and publishes about two dozen magazines annually including Enjoy Cherokee, Enjoy Gilmer, Enjoy Pickens, Class Act, Play Cherokee, Historic Canton, Bartow Parks and Recreation, and the Chamber of Commerce magazines for Cherokee and Pickens Counties.
With the new school year approaching, Gravley has advice for students, “Seek out mentors. Whether it be a professor, or someone in a field you’re interested in, and learn from those mentors. I’ve been very fortunate to have mentors over the years and have learned from each one of them.” For those who are undecided in their career path, he advises, “Think outside the box. Try your hand at anything that interests you. Talk to people in different fields you’re considering, and you might learn whether it is or is not a good fit. I wouldn’t have even considered my current career if it wasn’t for the part-time job during college.”