News and Blog

Sullivan Awards Presented to Outstanding Community Members

Sullivan Awards Presented to Outstanding Community Members

Ross and Ann Dodson receive the Sullivan Awards from Dr. Tyler Forrest, TWU President

Tennessee Wesleyan University recently honored two community leaders for their service to the greater Athens area: Ross and Ann Dodson.

The awards were announced during the University’s Spring Commencement Ceremony but, due to scheduling conflicts, presented later by Dr. Tyler Forrest, TWU President.

Ross Dodson is a native of Athens and a graduate of Tennessee Wesleyan University. The longtime director of the Athens Housing Authority has dedicated his life to service, including various leadership positions and membership with the Athens Lions Club, Athens Kiwanis Club, United Way of McMinn and Meigs Counties, McMinn County Economic Development Authority, Springbrook Golf and Country Club, McMinn County Education Foundation, Adult and Family Education, and Boy Scouts. For more than 20 years, he chaired the Friendly Fellow Club, organizing the food drive for families in need at Christmastime. He was named the Young Man of the Year in 1992, and six years later was named Man of the Year.

Ann Dodson was a lifelong educator who made a difference in the lives of children for 43 years. The long-time principal of Westside School in Athens, Ann, spent 42 years in the Athens City School System. Also, a graduate of Tennessee Wesleyan, her years taking liberal arts courses helped steer her toward a career in education and a life of work with young people.

“Ross and Ann are the ultimate champions for the Athens community and Tennessee Wesleyan University,” said Dr. Tyler Forrest. “There are not many organizations that have not benefited from the Dodson’s work and volunteer service.”

The Sullivan Awards are a national honor authorized to be presented by approximately seventy colleges and universities across the country, paying tribute to the work of Algernon Sydney Sullivan and Mary Mildred Sullivan, who both dedicated their lives to serving those in need.