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Rev. Dr. John C. Travis speaks at Founders' Day

Georgetown College Celebrates Founders’ Day

Submitted on January 31, 2023

President Rosemary Allen welcomed students, faculty, and staff to the Founders’ Day Convocation on Tuesday, January 31, 2023. This annual event recognizes the impact of many vital figures in the College’s history and the enduring legacy of its  transformational education. 

Each Founders’ Day, the Curry Award for Faculty Excellence is awarded to an outstanding faculty member. The award is named after Dr. Ralph Curry and Dr. Gwen Curry, dedicated professors who both served as Chairs of the English Department at Georgetown College. The Curry Award recognizes a faculty member who shows dedication not only to educating students inside the classroom but truly making a difference in their community and in the lives of young people. The 2023 Curry Award was awarded to  Dr. John Henkel, Associate Professor of Classics and General Studies. He received his bachelor’s degree from the College of William and Mary and his doctorate from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Henkel has been a faculty member at Georgetown College since 2010.

Dr. John Henkel receives Curry Award

“Dr. Henkel is passionate about teaching and infectiously excited about the content,” says Provost Dr. Jonathan Sands Wise. “He shows the kind of dedication to mentorship and supporting students that we all strive for as faculty members.”

Founders’ Day also introduces the newly elected Student Government Association (SGA) Executive Council, which serves as the voice of the students. Vice President for Student Life Dr. Curtis Sandberg inducted new SGA President Kaia Lanter ’25 and the other members of the SGA Executive Council that include Brooke Gantt ’25, Ella Hambrice ’25, Maryah-Rose Bridges ’24, Isabelle Ruggles ’24, and Garrett Boring ’25. Lanter then delivered the call to convocation.

Student Government Association Executive Council 2023

The keynote speaker for this year’s event was Rev. Dr. John Travis ’87. Dr. Travis is a current Board of Trustees member for Georgetown College and a retired educator and pastor. He received both his bachelor’s degree in 1979 and master’s degree in education in 1987 from Georgetown College. Travis delivered an inspirational message that emphasized the importance of the College’s strong foundation.

“We must resist the urge to lay a new foundation, we must build on the foundation that exists,” says Travis. “I have faith in the leadership and passion of President Allen. I believe in her love for the students, staff, faculty, and this College.”

For more information on the transformational education at Georgetown College, visit


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