President Emeritus Sparky and Allene Reeves honor South Georgia Tech’s 2023 Outstanding Instructor of Year, Chester A. Taylor, III

Published 9:37 pm Thursday, January 12, 2023

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From Staff Reports


AMERICUS – South Georgia Technical College President Emeritus Sparky Reeves and his wife, Allene, established an endowed fund with the South Georgia Technical College Foundation to honor the college’s Rick Perkins Instructor of the Year each year.  Chester A. Taylor, III, an SGTC Math Instructor was the recipient for 2023.

Due to health precautions, Sparky and Allene Reeves were unable to attend the award presentation. Their daughter, Mandy Reeves Young, represented the family and made the presentation to Taylor at the SGTC 2023 Rick Perkins Instructor of the Year breakfast recently.

“Thank you so much for letting me be here today to represent my parents,” said Mandy Young.  “Both of my parents are educators and this is very near and dear to their hearts.  While my dad was in Augusta, he asked me to look for some of his things and I found his business accounting grade book from the 1970’s when he was an instructor here.  It reminded me just how important this is to him.  So, I am honored to be here to represent both of them and make this presentation.

“As teachers or instructors, each of you make such a profound impact on student’s lives which is life long lasting.  Every impact can be measured in one of three categories. It either preserves, transcends, or alters.  The teaching profession alters people for their entire lives.  You altered students’ lives in a positive way and I thank you for what you do,” said Young as she presented Chester Taylor a check on behalf of Sparky and Allene Reeves as the SGTC 2023 Rick Perkins Instructor of the Year.

Taylor is the eighth recipient of the Sparky and Allene Reeves Instructor of the Year stipend.  Andrea Ingram, a Computer Information Systems Instructor, was the first recipient of the award in 2016 and Charles Christmas, an Aviation Maintenance Instructor, was selected in 2017.  Teresa McCook, the Americus campus Criminal Justice Instructor, received the award in 2018, Law Enforcement Academy Director Brett Murray was recognized in 2019, Cosmetology Instructor Dorothea Lusane McKenzie earned the honor in 2020 and Culinary Arts Instructor Chef “Ricky” Ludwig Watzlowick was named in 2021.  Starlyn Sampson, auto collision and repair instructor, received the award in 2022.

President Emeritus Reeves and Allene endowed this special fund with the South Georgia Technical College Foundation in 2010 and have been growing the fund for the past twelve years in order to be able to recognize the outstanding instructor and top student at South Georgia Technical College each year.

“This is a tremendous honor for us to be able to give back to the best of the best each year,” said South Georgia Technical College President Emeritus Sparky Reeves when he endowed the fund. “Students may be the lifeblood of South Georgia Technical College but our instructors are the heartbeat.  We are thrilled to be able to give back to our top instructor and our top student each year.”

Reeves joined the South Georgia Technical College faculty in 1973 as an Accounting, Math, and Business Psychology Instructor.  In addition to teaching, he also served as a Supervisor, Evening Coordinator, Vice President of Economic Development and President.  He retired in 2015.

After accepting the stipend from the Reeves’, Chester thanked Mandy Young and her parents, and his co-workers for nominating him for this honor.  “I am very grateful to be selected as the Instructor of the Year,” said Taylor.  “I appreciate your support of this program and all the instructors.  I will do my best to make you and South Georgia Technical College proud.”

Chester Taylor will represent South Georgia Technical College at regional and state competitions in an effort to be selected as the top instructor within the Technical College System of Georgia.

“On behalf of South Georgia Technical College I would like to thank President Emeritus Sparky and Allene Reeves for their continued support of South Georgia Technical College, its instructors and its students,” said SGTC President Dr. John Watford.  “South Georgia Technical College has a legacy.  We are celebrating our 75th anniversary this year and President Reeves and Allene embody that legacy.  They have been special to South Georgia Tech for many years and today they demonstrated again why they mean so much to the college, its faculty, staff, and students,” added Watford.

SGTC Academic Dean David Finley spearheaded the Rick Perkins Instructor of the Year efforts, and thanked Chester Taylor for his service to the college inside the classroom and as the National Technical College Honor Society faculty chair.

For more information about how to donate or establish an endowed scholarship at South Georgia Technical College, contact Su Ann Bird, SGTC Vice President of Institutional Advancement and Foundation Executive Director at 229-931-2011 or  Tax deductible donations may also be mailed to the SGTC Foundation, P.O. Box 6102, Americus GA 31709.