The public is invited to attend this year’s Bridgeport Hall of Success Induction Ceremony on Saturday, Nov. 2, in the Kenneth Storey Gymnasium at Bridgeport Middle School. The induction banquet begins at 6 p.m.
The Induction Class of 2019 includes five women and six men who graduated from Bridgeport High School or North Jackson High School. Each of these outstanding adults has made contributions to their communities as well as their chosen professions.
This year’s inductees are Shone Bynum, Haley Colvin, Charlene Rowland Foshee, Ruby Hahn, Robert G. “Bob” Lee, Jere McGraw, JoJohn McGraw, Dot McDonald, Danny Rich, David Smith and Karen Walker Washington.
The son of Gladious and the late Henry H. Bynum of Bridgeport, Shone Bynum graduated from Bridgeport High School in 1985. He then worked for Northwest Airlines for over 10 years. While employed with them, Bynum held leadership positions and lived in seven states. Today he is president and CEO of his own business, SKB Facilities and Maintenance, Inc. and employs over 350 people.
SKB cleans over 10 million square feet daily in four states. Bynum has been recognized by the City of Memphis for leadership efforts in the community and won the We Mean Business Award which is presented by the Mayor of Memphis. SKB won the Spark and Flame Award presented by the Memphis Light, Gas, and Water Department. He currently serves on the board of directors of AutoZone Liberty Bowl.
Bynum’s wife, Kelley, works with him in the business. He has two sons, DeAndre and Antuan, a stepdaughter, Kiara, and two grandchildren, Marley and Carter. Bynum believes hard work and a strong work ethic are the keys to being successful.
Haley Colvin attended Bridgeport Middle School and graduated from North Jackson High School. Following her graduation from the University of Alabama, Colvin began her career as a registered dietitian with the Tennessee Department of Health at Grundy County Health Department.
She has received the Southeast Region’s Above and Beyond Award (2014), the Tennessee Public Health Association Nutrition Worker of the Year (2015), and was named Outstanding Individual Clinical Employee (2018).
She currently serves as president of the Tennessee Public Health Association.
“The best advice I could give to students today,” says Colvin, “is to define your version of success and go after it wholeheartedly.”
Charlene Rowland Foshee graduated from Bridgeport High School in 1983. Today she is co-owner of Speech Pathology Associates, LLC, where she practices as a medical speech-language pathologist.
Foshee focuses on the treatment of neurogenic communication disorders, cognitive training of acquired brain injury, swallowing disorders, fluency disorders, and language impairments. She is the daughter of James and Helen Rowland.
She and her husband, Kevin, have two sons, Seth and Brock, who are both college students. She is a member of the Bridgeport Church of Christ.
A 1951 graduate of Bridgeport High School, Ruby Hahn has been recognized as the Jackson County Citizen of the Year. Following her graduation from high school, she worked at Bell South as an operator and retired from there as manager.
She has served on the Jackson County 911 Committee and was even the director at one point. She has also been active with CUBB (Citizens United for a Better Bridgeport) and the Bridgeport Zoning Board.
Robert G. “Bob” Lee is a 1960 graduate of Bridgeport High School and attended Athens College and Cleveland State. He began his broadcasting career at WTVC in Chattanooga in 1966. He worked in various positions with WTVC as well as WSFA, WYEA, and WDEF.
He served as general manager of WDBJ and retired in 2007. Lee has been inducted into the Virginia Broadcasting Hall of Fame (2010). He was a member and former president of the Virginia Association of Broadcasters and served on the National Association of Broadcasters Television Board.
Two brothers are part of this year’s induction class. JoJohn McGraw and his late brother Jere Walker McGraw will be recognized at this year’s ceremony.
Affectionately known as Coach D by his students and players, Jere McGraw was a 1974 graduate of Bridgeport High School and earned his college degree from the University of Tennessee in Chattanooga.
He taught history for 33 years at Bridgeport High School He also coached football at Bridgeport High School and Bridgeport Middle School. He was a member of the Bridgeport First United Methodist Church. He was also active with the Jackson County Democratic Committee. As an educator, McGraw was a member of the National Education Association, the Alabama Education Association, and the Jackson County Education Association.
He died in 2013 at his home on Big Oak Farms. In honor of his memory, the Bridgeport Middle School football field was named McGraw Field.
JoJohn McGraw is a 1971 graduate of Bridgeport High School and was a member of the National Guard from 1971-1978. He graduated from the University of Alabama. McGraw has been a member of both the Alabama and Tennessee Forestry Associations and owns the family farm Big Oak. He served as co-grand marshal with his brother, Jere, for the Bridgeport Christmas Parade.
The brothers hosted the annual Siege of Bridgeport Reenactment and it continues today. This has been going on for over 25 years and was once the largest Civil War Reenactment in the state of Alabama.
A 1947 Bridgeport High School graduate, Dot McDonald is one of the original members of CUBB and currently serves as its president. She can be found as an inspector at most elections. McDonald has been a substitute teacher, a Cub Scout Den Mother, and band booster. She is a co-owner of the Tot and Teen Shoppe in South Pittsburg. She is also a member of the Literary Club.
With her husband, Floyd, McDonald has two grown children. They are Tim (Joanna) McDonald and Joy Wagner. Their grandchildren are Heather (Patrick) Droke, Zoe McDonald, and Nathan McDonald. They have one great-grandchild, Hudson Droke. She is a lifelong member of the Bridgeport Church of Christ.
Danny Rich is a 1982 Bridgeport High School graduate who currently serves as a member of the Jackson County Commission. He has worked many years in the family construction business and took over Rich Construction following the death of his father. The business has served this area for over 43 years.
Rich is the son of the late Bobby and Patsy Rich of Bridgeport. He and his wife, Tina, are the parents of Linnzi Rich and Brandi (Jay) Beard. They have one granddaughter, Finley Grace Beard. Rich feels that it is an honor to be chosen for the Hall of Success.
Having served as a preacher and a teacher, David Smith is a 1978 graduate of Bridgeport High School and an Auburn University graduate. His parents are Betty Hall Smith and the late David Smith. Smith taught agribusiness at Bridgeport High School and then moved to North Jackson High School before retiring in 2014.
He is certified in Turf Management and was the caretaker of the football fields at both schools where he taught. He has also helped Bridgeport and Stevenson Middle Schools with their fields. Smith was the associate minister at South Pittsburg before becoming a full-time preacher at the Stevenson Church of Christ. Smith and his wife, Susan, have rescued many cats and dogs over the years where they have a home with their horses on the farm in Jefferey’s Cove. His brother is Randy Smith, a veterinarian, and his sister, Becky McCoy, is a teacher.
Karen Walker Washington is a 1974 graduate of Bridgeport High School. She graduated from Middle Tennessee State University and Alabama A and M University and has spent over 30 years in the field of education.
For the past 22 years, Washington has been teaching special needs children in Rutherford County, Tennessee. She is known among her colleagues as that teacher who can reach children deemed as difficult or unreachable by others. She and her husband, Lawrence, are parents to two daughters. They are Lauren and Lanae.
There is still time to purchase tickets to this year’s event. Tickets are $30. For more information and to get your tickets, call 256-495-2967.