ABAC Speeches To Help Mark Black History Month

African-American History Month activities at Abraham Baldwin Agricultural College will be highlighted by speeches from Dr. Thomas Aiello from Valdosta State University and Wasdon Graydon, a 1970 ABAC alumnus and former ABAC administrator. Aiello, an associate professor of history and African-American studies at VSU, will speak at 6 p.m. Feb. 12 in Howard Auditorium; Graydon, managing partner with Graydon Enterprises, speaks at 12:30 p.m. Feb. 20 in Room 107 of the Health Sciences building. Aiello earned his Ph.D. from the University of Arkansas in 2007. The bulk of his courses at VSU relate to African-American history from early slavery to “Black Power.” His research interests are broader, covering 20th century cultural and intellectual history. He will share his original research on police brutality in South Georgia in the decade following World War II. Aiello’s books include “The Battle for the Souls of Black Folk: W.E.B. DuBois, Booker T. Washington and the Debate That Shaped the Course of Civil Rights,” “Jim Crow’s Last Stand: Nonunanimous Criminal Jury Verdicts in Louisiana,” and “The Kings of Casino Park: Race and Race Baseball in the Lost Season of 1932.” Graydon was director of ABAC sponsored programs and the Minority Advising Program before his retirement in 2010 after a 37-year career. He was one of the first African-American students to enroll at ABAC in 1968. He earned his bachelor of science degree in history and education from Georgia Southern University and his master of education degree from VSU.  In 2001, Graydon received the E. Lanier Carson Leadership Award for College Administrators at ABAC and the President’s Award for Achievement, Leadership and Service. In 1994, he was named Arts Citizen of the Year in Tift County. Graydon served as a Tift County commissioner from 1984-1992 and was selected as a member of the Leadership Georgia program in 1991.
Source: Tifton Grapevine