Mobley Building dedicated
The dedication of the Edward D. Mobley Administration Building at Bainbridge College took place on Sunday as a cool breeze blew through the campus’ oaks and pines, two symbols chosen by Mobley to represent the college.
More than 100 members of the local and college communities were in attendance at the event to honor Mobley, Bainbridge College’s founding president. The building, now bearing his name, was built during his tenure as president along with four other original main buildings.
Bainbridge College President Tom Wilkerson greeted those in attendance, taking time to recognize those members of the audience who previously or currently contributed to the college as members of Bainbridge College Foundation, faculty and staff.
“This building will be a lasting testament to his [Mobley’s] life long and deep devotion to education,” said Wilkerson. “The citizens of southwest Georgia have been enriched by his 25 years of distinguished and honorable service as president of Bainbridge College.”
All those who spoke of Mobley pointed to his vision, diligence and dedication as wonderful attributes that highlighted his service to college during his tenure from 1972 to his retirement in 1997.
The naming of the building was approved by the University System of Georgia Board of Regents and Regent Doreen Poitevint of the 2nd Congressional District was one of the speakers at the event.
“Today we honor a man whose visions laid the foundations of this institution,” said Poitevint. “Though he credits many others for making this college a reality, it is his faith, dedication, persistence and guidance that have brought us to this day. All of us who know him know that he has touched so many lives through his efforts. Dr. Mobley, we thank you for your vision, thank you for you commitment and thank you for being a part of Bainbridge College and our community.”
Mayor Mark Harrell spoke about his own fond memories of attending Bainbridge College and expressed his gratitude for Mobley and his vision for the school. Harrell then presented Mobley with a proclamation from the City of Bainbridge naming April 26 Edward D. Mobley day.
“The city of Bainbridge has a special bond with the college and we appreciate everything you have done,” said Harrell.
Sam Griffin, long-time owner and publisher in The Post-Searchlight, provided a tribute to Mobley, pointing out not only that he oversaw construction of the campus, the recruitment of the charter faculty, staff and students, but the many other undertakings he was a part of as an educator and member of the Bainbridge community.
“Not only is Ed Mobley our own music man, he is truly a renaissance man, who has not only brought us Bainbridge College but who has helped expanded the horizons of our entire community and its citizens,” said Griffin. “It’s most appropriate that the administration building, one of the initial buildings that he put into commission at the college’s birth, should bear his name. But it is somewhat redundant in that Ed Mobley is already imbedded in the hearts and minds of the people of this community.”
Following the unveiling of a plaque to be placed in the building in his honor, Mobley expressed his gratitude and happiness at seeing all his friends and family in the audience.
Mobley reminisced on his many memories of Bainbridge College, recounting his first visit to Bainbridge in 1972 and discovering the charm of the area. He recalled hearing many Bainbridge residents at that time expressing their sadness at the closing of the area’s U.S. Army Air Corps Base. Mobley explained that over time as the college grew it began to make a difference, filling the void left by the closing of the base and giving people something to be proud of.
“I’m very proud we now have more than 3,000 students,” said Mobley. “I’m even prouder of the thousands of students who’ve been helped and whose lives have been changed.”
Mobley closed by expressing his great appreciation and pride in having contributed to Bainbridge and its people.
An invocation was given at the ceremony by the Rev. Jim Clendinen and music was provided by the Tallahassee Brass Band.