Board members name Hall of Fame inductees

Published 5:45 am Wednesday, May 21, 2008

By By Adrienne McKenzie
The Atmore Hall of Fame committee has selected five individuals to be honored at the next ceremony, slated for Nov. 22.
The five inductees include, George Mosby, Joseph Latham Sr., George Robinson (G.R.) Swift Sr., Claude Kelley and Dr. James Brooks (J.B.) Thomas Jr.
The Hall of Fame board members receive names submitted by community members. After the nominations are received, the board votes on the Top 5 to be inducted into the Hall of Fame.
Mosby became a staple of the community as the director of the Houston Avery pool during the 1960s. He also was a teacher in the county for 38 years and an assistant coach in football and basketball at Escambia County Training School.
Mosby is a member of Gaines Chapel A.M.E. Church, where he currently serves as the Steward Pro Tem.
Thomas served as the Escambia County High School’s football team doctor for 30 years. He helped organized the building of the Herbert Barnes Stadium.
Thomas was the Atmore Area Chamber of Commerce’s first Lifetime Achievement Award winner on Jan. 23, 1997.
He was a member of the Marine Special Forces and on July 1, 1991 he celebrated 40 years of medical attention and was still making house calls.
Kelley was an Atmore Rotary Club charter member and was key in the forming of the Chamber of Commerce. He was president of the Chamber in 1950. He was the first recipient of the Atmore Citizenship Award in 1950. He also served as the president of the National Wildlife Federation and was commissioner of the Alabama Department of Conservation and Natural Resources.
Kelley worked with former Atmore mayor, the late Patricia McKenzie, in obtaining state funds for expanding the city’s park system.
Swift organized, along with others, the Swift-Hunter Lumber Company in 1920. In the 1930s when the United States suffered a depression, Swift spearheaded a relief program for the City of Atmore. He helped build a hospital, two city schools, was a charter member for the Chamber of Commerce and the Lions Club and was on the city school board for 20 years. He was also a director of the First National Bank of Atmore.
Latham was a coach in Walnut Hill, Fla. for 27 years and the Ernest Ward stadium was named in his honor in 1986. He was awarded Coach of the Year for the Escambia River Conference in 1961, ‘64, ‘65 and ‘71. He was involved in the community with activities including the Volunteer Fire Department with a fundraising fish fry, the Quarterback Club and a member of First Baptist Church. He also umpired Little League and youth games in Atmore.
Hall of Fame inductees will be honored and remembered at a ceremony on Nov. 22 at 6 p.m. at the Atmore Area YMCA. Tickets will cost $15, but are not yet on sale.

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