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Thomas awarded Judy Mims endowment

The legacy of a local educator and devout Alabama fan will live on in the spirit of students like Macee Thomas, the first recipient of the Judy Mims Memorial Endowed Scholarship.

The scholarship, established in May of last year, bears Mims’ name because of a significant contribution made by her husband, Troy Mims, to the Chilton County Chapter of the University of Alabama National Alumni Association’s scholarship fund.

Thomas, a Chilton County High School graduating senior, will attend UA this fall on the $1,600 scholarship. She plans to become an educator herself, majoring in secondary education math.

“There were quite a few outstanding candidates for this scholarship, and she was the most outstanding one,” said Troy Mims, scholarship endowment committee chairman. “Judy would have been proud.”

Thomas has maintained a 4.0 GPA and has served as class president all four years of high school.

She is a valedictorian, Girl’s State delegate, National Beta and Honor Society member, SGA chairperson, was chosen for Who’s Who Most School Spirit, named Miss CCHS, played varsity softball and was mascot for six years.

Thomas is the daughter of Bill and Julia Thomas and is the youngest of four children. All three of her siblings attended Samford University, but she chose the University of Alabama to pursue her degree.

“I am honored to have been chosen as the first recipient for this scholarship,” she said. “I did not personally have Mrs. Judy as a teacher, but it is educators like her that influenced my decision to go into education.”

While at UA, Thomas will carry on the school’s rich tradition as Big Al, one of her two favorite Alabama traditions — the other being Crimson Tide football.

“I enter my freshman year at the University of Alabama with pride and high ambitions,” she said. “My goals are to maintain good grades, become involved in student activities, and receive an education that will prepare me for the future.”

Kendall Williams, president of the local Alumni Association chapter, said Thomas reminded him of what former Tide player Siran Stacy said at the alumni dinner this spring — that expectations are high at the university.

“I couldn’t help but think about Macee and how she’s lived up to those expectations,” Williams said.

The scholarship is available to Chilton County graduating seniors who officially apply for scholarships at UA by Dec. 1. Recipients are selected based on academic achievement, community involvement and extracurricular activities.

Anyone interested in making a tax deductible contribution should call Williams at 755-4052.