DECATUR — Emmett Sefton always believed in the power of education and the school has ensured that his memory and love of learning would live on as the Richland Community College Foundation Board named its annual fund the Emmett Sefton Memorial Endowed Scholarship.
“Emmett was a trustee liaison,” Foundation executive director Richard McGowan said Tuesday, “and he always said that he felt the scholarships the Foundation gave out were the best things it did for Richland, so we had this idea that it would be great to name the endowment fund after him.
“He was someone who was so supportive and recognized what we were trying to do with the scholarship program, and the board felt this would be a great way to remember him.”
Sefton, who was a farmer in Macon County for more than 51 years and served as secretary of the Richland Community College Board of Trustees from 2009 to 2013, died June 24 at the age of 81.
“This is the most appropriate thing to do for Emmett,” said Dale Colee, chairman of the Richland Community College Board of Trustees. “Emmett always wanted to get as much education for students as possible and always wanted to meet scholarship recipients, and to me, this is the perfect way to keep Emmett Sefton’s name in our memories.”
In 2012, 534 students were recipients of Foundation scholarships, and McGowan said he’s hopeful that the Emmett Sefton Memorial Endowed Scholarship will benefit many students in the future.
“We hope people who remember Emmett fondly will want to contribute to the scholarship fund,” he said.
“It’s great,” said Richland President Gayle Saunders. “Emmett was a beloved friend of Richland Community College, as well as a personal friend. He served selflessly as a trustee of the college … and had a visible passion for the students. He will stay in our memories to remind us of what’s really important in life and in leading this transformational college. In recognition of his inspiration and energy, we name this scholarship for him.”