Groundbreaking Ceremony Held For Marion County Regional Institute For Higher Education

Tuesday, October 29, 2013
Les Price, Marion County Commissioner, Jane Dawkins, Marion County Commissioner and South Pittsburg Mayor, John Graham, Marion County Mayor, Dr. James Catanzaro, Chattanooga State president, David Jackson, Kimball mayor, Julie Bennett, Chattanooga State Kimball site director, Howell Moss, former Marion County mayor, Henry Lodge, Lodge, Manufacturing
Les Price, Marion County Commissioner, Jane Dawkins, Marion County Commissioner and South Pittsburg Mayor, John Graham, Marion County Mayor, Dr. James Catanzaro, Chattanooga State president, David Jackson, Kimball mayor, Julie Bennett, Chattanooga State Kimball site director, Howell Moss, former Marion County mayor, Henry Lodge, Lodge, Manufacturing

It was a long time coming, but as Marion County Mayor John Graham said, “It’s the future of our entire region!” The groundbreaking ceremony for the new Marion County Regional Institute for Higher Education building took place amid a crowd of more than 100 people on Oct. 23. Regional and local government, business and industry, educational representatives and area residents were on hand to witness this historic occasion.

Mayor Graham was pleased to report that the initial phase of the site actually came in more than $600,000 under budget. That money has been applied along with a $1 million donation to begin phase two: the second of seven buildings.

Former county mayor Howell Moss said, “Almost 20 years ago, the technology boom came to Marion County. With one computer in town and without the knowledge to use it, it became apparent that residents of Marion County would need to retrain for the times.” Moss added that in the early 90s, the county was more worried about building primary schools in the area and had no money to consider a college. David Jackson, mayor of Kimball recalls, “The city of Kimball had one question…what do we need to do to get this done?” The answer became clear following a meeting with Dr. James Catanzaro, president of Chattanooga State: expand the community college service area into Marion County. The Chattanooga State Kimball site opened in 1993.

When a site became available, it was an old church on Battle Creek Road that the county purchased. Mr. Moss said, “We filled that up and needed more room, so we built on to the back. It wasn’t real pretty or fancy, but it was functional. We filled that up too.” Without any more room to expand and more students seeking higher educational opportunities, the county began looking at other options culminating in the purchase of a 125-acre piece of land called Holland Farm, off of Highway 41 just inside Kimball.

Excitement and pride was apparent throughout the ceremony. Representing the Marion County Commission, Les Price said, “ We’ve done a lot in the county, but this is the most important thing we have ever done.” Added Marion County Commissioner and South Pittsburg Mayor Jane Dawkins, “This is the single, most important, life-changing project we could ever be a part of for generations to come.” Finally, Henry Lodge of Lodge Manufacturing, representing industry summed it up, “It’s clear that industry is changing. Folks have to have the skills demanded in today’s world. Phase two will raise the economic value of the county for all citizens. The role of industry is to provide jobs and growth, but we can only grow with the necessary skill sets. Chattanooga State has innovative programs and there is no college better in the state to provide this!”

Dr. Catanzaro announced that Chattanooga State won the celebrated Bellwether Award earlier this year. This award is bestowed upon a community college with leading edge programs in community college practices worthy of replication. In a final address before the groundbreaking, Dr. Catanzaro said, “We are going to provide those programs and certificates to you as well.”

For more information about Chattanooga State visit www.chattanoogastate.edu or call the Kimball site at 423 837-1327.


From Chattanooga State To Published Author

Morgan Smith, a 2011 Chattanooga State graduate, is taking her passion for writing and turning it into a career. She has published four mystery novels and is currently working on her fifth book. She began her writing career at Chattanooga State, where she wrote her first screenplay, Shades of Amber. She later used that script as the basis for her first novel.  Ms. Smith ... (click for more)

Kelly Named TCAT Outstanding Student Of The Year

James “Mickey” Kelly has been named the 2016 Outstanding Student of the Year by the Tennessee College of Applied Technology at Chattanooga State Community College. Mr. Kelly graduated in December with his Computer Support Technology technical diploma. Mr. Kelly had always been good with electronics and thought he would be good at computers too. “I took to it like a fish to water ... (click for more)

2 Shot Tuesday Afternoon On Windsor Street

Chattanooga Police responded on Tuesday to the 2100 block of Windsor Street, on a report that two people had been shot.   Upon arrival, officers located two victims suffering from gunshot wounds. Their injuries are non-life threatening at this time. Both victims were transported to a local hospital by Hamilton County EMS.   Two suspects were reported to police. ... (click for more)

Erlanger Reports Dramatic Increase In Flu-Like Illnesses

The number of influenza-like illnesses treated at Erlanger Health System shows a dramatic increase compared to this time last year.  Erlanger reported treating 156 patients with flu like illnesses between Feb. 12 and 18 of this year. This represents a significant increase from the seven cases reported during the same week last year and 15 cases reported approximately a month ... (click for more)

Judge Doug Meyer Lived A Full Life Helping Many

I was sadden to learn of the death of Judge Doug Meyer.  Judge Meyer retired from the Criminal Court bench here in 2006.  Prior to that he had been the Chattanooga city judge for several years.  As a young attorney I tried many cases in front of Judge Meyer.  Also while I was awaiting my case to be tried, I would observe him on the bench.  Judge Meyer ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: Marshall’s 3% Folly

The National Health Interview Survey is believed to be the best gauge of health and behaviors in the United States. It is under the umbrella of the nation’s Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, so first let me share that the figures I am going to present are directly attributed to what is the best source believed to be out there. I didn’t make these numbers up and I had nothing ... (click for more)