Motlow State Community College
P.O. Box 8500
Lynchburg, TN 37352-8500
Motlow Celebrates Ingram Administration Renovation
November 21, 2011
Motlow College hosted an opening ceremony Sunday, to celebrate the renovation of the Ingram Administration Building on the Moore County Campus. Dr. Sam H. Ingram, the first president of Motlow, was present for the ceremony that included a surprise presentation honoring his service to the College.
Four of Motlow's five presidents were on hand for the official opening. In order of administration: Dr. Sam H. Ingram, Dr. Frank Glass, Dr. Art Walker and Dr. MaryLou Apple. Second president, Dr. Harry Wagner, was unable to attend. In addition to past and present members of Motlow faculty, staff and trustees; others who attended included Rep. David Alexander, Tullahoma Mayor Lane Curlee, Dr. and Mrs. Harry Nisbett, former regent J. Stanley Rogers and former Sen. Jerry Cooper.
Recognized for their work in the renovation were David Kline of Kline Swinney Associates, an architectural firm in Nashville and construction superintendent Roger Laws, Sr. of Romach, Inc., General Contractors of Franklin. Jane Counts of Contract Furniture Alliance in Lavergne was also acknowledged for her work with the staff in choosing the new furnishings.
Dr. Apple described Dr. Ingram as the thriftiest president the college has ever had. In keeping with his example, she displayed a small handheld calculator once owned by Ingram that is still used in the president's office today. Apple said, "I am often described as being 'a lot like Sam' when it comes to money issues."She thanked him publically for setting a fine example for all to follow and for being a wonderful mentor.
Kay (Kimbro) Griner shared the history of the College's first office. She worked at Middle Tennessee State University (MTSU) in the late 1960's when Dr. Ingram was chosen as president of the newest community college. He hired her as his administrative assistant and they began the first office of administration for Motlow in The First Baptist Church in Tullahoma. When construction was complete on the Moore County campus in 1969, they moved into what would eventually be the Ingram Administration building.
Griner said, "Motlow College, under Dr. Ingram's leadership, proved to have an immediate profound impact on this area. Not only with the jobs provided by the College but for the citizens that could now receive an education locally."
She also noted how conservative and generous Dr. Ingram was. That first holiday season at Motlow she asked her new boss about a Christmas tree for the lobby area. When it was apparent no funds would be available for the project, she and other staff members walked into the woods and cut one for display. After a lot of trimming and decoration it seemed to be presentable enough. Griner said, "He bragged on our efforts and the next year, first of December - Dr. Ingram opened his wallet and gave me personal money to purchase an appropriate specimen of a tree."
Dr. Glass described first knowing Dr. Ingram in 1965 when Ingram was the chair of the education department at MTSU. Glass said, "I needed a few final credit hours for graduation and he helped me arrange a class."He continued, "Who would have thought, he would soon be president of Motlow and I would one day follow in his footsteps."
Glass described the first president as timeless and ageless. He said, "Dr. Ingram was the same man back then as he was when he was president of Motlow and as he is today."Glass continued, "He has always supported education, whether he was working on his farm in Moore County or working behind a desk."
When Dr. Ingram addressed the crowd of supporters, he noted that he could listen to Griner and Glass brag about him all day. With warm humor he said, "You know I am getting a little older and I do enjoy hearing people say nice things about me."
On a more serious note he said, "Motlow College is what it is today, not because of just one person."He concluded, "Many years of dedication from several fine people are wrapped up in this institution. I am honored by your presentation today and I appreciate all of the fine presidents who have followed me at Motlow."