Georgetown College Inducts New Hall of Fame Class at Founders’ Day
Submitted on January 21, 2020
One of the most special days each year at Georgetown College, Founders’ Day serves as a celebration of the history of the college, a reminder of the profound impact the college has on those who love it, and a day to honor key individuals who define what it means to be a Georgetonian.
This year’s ceremony, President Jones’s first as Georgetown College president, celebrated the past but also looked to the future, as the college enters the year 2020 and nears its bicentennial in 2029. In his opening remarks President Jones welcomed students back for the spring semester and honored the dedication of faculty and staff in shaping minds and guiding Georgetown College.
The featured speaker at Founders’ Day was Ms. Maggie Mills ’69. An active student and member of the community during her time as a student, Mills was involved in Wordmasters, Topettes Drill Team, A Capella Choir, Oratorio Chorus, and Chapel Choir. She also was the 1969 Belle of the Blue, representing her sorority, Kappa Delta. She met her husband, Bob Mills, in 1965, and they married in 1969.
She began her teaching career in 1975, earning a Master’s Degree in German from Indiana University in 1976. After an amazingly impactful teaching career, she officially retired in 2010. Maggie and her husband Bob currently reside in Owenton, Kentucky, and she currently teaches English as a Second Language to Hispanic residents in Owen County. She also serves on the Scholarship Committee of the Women’s Association of Georgetown College.
In her speech, Mills focused on the history of the college and the individuals from the past so key in Georgetown becoming the institution it is today. Mills championed the foundation these key figures built for Georgetown College and looked towards a bright future. She also espoused the championship-level education provided by Georgetown College.
Reflecting on her time as a student, she said, “My four years at Georgetown College were solid ones, providing a rich, varied, and strong foundation from which I expanded as I built my life and my career. The passion possessed by my professors for their teaching and their care for my learning were clearly evident and inspired me daily in my 35 year career as an educator. The many campus organizations in which I participated, including Kappa Delta, taught me life lessons about leadership, friendship, cooperation, and communication and to this day, I treasure the lifelong friends I made while here. Georgetown College and its liberal arts tradition were invaluable for me, and I believe that they are the same for you students today.”
Founders’ Day also presents an opportunity to honor the impact several individuals have had on the college by inducting them into the Georgetown College Hall of Fame. This year’s inductees are Leroy “Buddy” ‘51 and Jean Flowers Albright ‘51, Dr. Betty Jean Lindle Chatham ‘47, Dr. Gwen Cranfill Curry ‘54, and Bob and Betty Bell Lykins.
Like so many before them, Bob and Betty Bell Lykins can trace their most important memories and relationships to GC. After all, the couple met while they were both attending Georgetown in the early 1960s and married soon after.
Bob Lykins’ career after the couple left GC in 1962 would take the couple all over the Commonwealth of Kentucky. Bob would eventually retire as Kentucky Utility Company Regional Vice President in 1998.
The Lykins have two daughters, who continue their legacy as proud Tigers. Both daughters, Lisa and Julie both attended GC, and in 2018, the next generation further continued that legacy, with Julie’s sons, Max and Alex, graduating from GC in 2018.
Bob sums up their relationship to Georgetown College best, saying, “GC is always in our hearts, and we are loyal Tigers.”
Dr. Gwen Cranfill Curry ’54, daughter of a Georgetown College professor, earned her Bachelor of Arts degree from Georgetown in 1954. She received her master’s degree from the University of Kentucky in 1980.
Dr. Curry began her teaching career in 1962 and would later become a full professor and Chair of the English Department at Georgetown College. She and her husband, Dr. Ralph Curry, were instrumental in establishing the college’s academic partnership with Regent’s Park College of Oxford University.
Dr. Curry received the Cawthorne Award for Excellence in Teaching in 1992 and the George Walker Redding Faculty Award for Christian Service in 2000. She was named Kentucky’s CASE Professor of the Year in 1993. The Curry Award for Faculty Excellence, recognizing exemplary teaching and service, was established in 2005 in honor of Gwen and Ralph Curry. Dr. Curry passed away on April 16, 2013.
Dr. Betty Jean Lindle Chatham ‘47 can trace the beginnings of her successful music career back to GC. She earned her bachelor’s degree in piano performance and would then go on to achieve a master’s degree in music from the University of Louisville and honorary doctorate from GC in 2000.
Her distinguished career in music began in 1953 at First Baptist Church in Shelbyville, where she conducted children’s youth choirs. She would later teach at Georgetown College and serve as artist-in-residence at GC.
As a pianist, she performed across the United States and in 18 countries. She retired after 60 years as a pianist in 2012, having published more than 80 pieces and recorded several albums during her career.
She and her husband, Dr. Donald Chatham ’48, have additional strong ties to Georgetown College, both serving as trustees at one time. Three of the Chatham’s children are also Georgetown graduates: Donn, Martha, and Sarahbeth.
Both Leroy “Buddy” Albright ‘51 and his wife, Jean Albright ’51 felt a call to ministry at a young age, and, as fate would have it, they would both end up at Georgetown College in the late 1940s, where they would fall in love and eventually marry in 1950.
After achieving their bachelor’s degrees at Georgetown College, they both attended Southern Seminary in Louisville, Kentucky, during which time Buddy pastored a church in northern Kentucky.
After their time at Southern Seminary and a stint for Buddy as pastor in Claflin, Kansas, Buddy and Jean Albright would serve as missionaries to South Central Africa and Mexico for 45 years. During this time, they dedicated themselves to serving God. Together, they have three sons: Richard, Leroy, and Raymond, with Richard and Leroy attending GC like their parents. Mr. and Mrs. Albright were the Alumni Achievement Award in 1980 for their service.
Also presented at Founders’ Day was The Curry Award for Faculty Excellence, named for this year’s Hall of Fame inductee Dr. Gwen Curry and her husband, Dr. Ralph Curry. The award honors the exemplary teaching and service of a faculty member each year. This year’s recipient, was Professor of Art, Daniel Graham. Professor Graham uses his boundless creativity to solve problems as a teacher and member of the college community. He designed, initiated, and maintains the college’s Prototype Program, mentoring students and guiding their development as artists and students.
A day of celebration and remembrance, Founders’ Day formally kicked off the spring semester at Georgetown College. A full video of the ceremony can be watched at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2mC6qlYwMa0.