2009 Tuscaloosa County Civic Hall of Fame honorees:

Johnnie R. Aycock (1945-present)

One of Alabama's most respected and effective chamber of commerce executives, Johnnie Aycock served the community as President & CEO of The Chamber of Commerce of West Alabama for almost 28 years, contributing in significant ways to economic and business development, education, cultural development, leadership development, racial harmony, livability, and other aspects of Tuscaloosa County that have far exceeded the traditional role of a Chamber executive. He was an active, creative leader working to build a quality community through a diverse menu of organizations and initiatives, some of which he provided leadership to establish, including: Leadership Tuscaloosa, Adopt A School, Literacy Council of West Alabama, Center For Workforce Development, West Alabama Leadership Prayer Breakfast, Challenge 21, Rotary Club of Tuscaloosa, Chamber of Commerce of Alabama, for which he was named Alabama's Chamber Executive of the Year in 2003, Public Affairs Research Council of Alabama, Alabama Citizens For Constitutional Reform, Calvary Baptist Church, and many others.

Star Kilstein Bloom  (1939-present)

One of Tuscaloosa County's most active civic, educational and volunteer leaders, Star Bloom has dedicated most of her adult life working to build quality education and meet social needs within the community. She has made a significant contribution through a broad array of civic, educational and community roles and organizations, including Tuscaloosa County High School Foundation, Challenge 21, The University of Alabama's Integrated Science Program and the Co-Director of The University's Center For Communications and Educational Technology, Baby Talk, as a founding member of Tuscaloosa's One Place, and a host of other meaningful leadership roles.

Albert Dawson Christian, Sr. (1917-2012)

Mr. Christian was born and raised in Windham Springs, Alabama to humble beginnings. In 1936, he moved to Tuscaloosa where he worked and later graduated from Tuscaloosa High School in 1939. He began his service in the United States Army in 1941 when he was the first person drafted from Tuscaloosa County for World War II. As a member of the 87th Engineers, he participated in four amphibious landings during World War II, including those in North Africa, Italy, and the D-Day invasion of Normandy, France. After serving more than 30 heroic months of heavy battle, Mr. Christian was given orders that he could return home to Tuscaloosa. Once home, he remained on active duty until 1947, at which time he began his service in the National Guard where he worked as the sole operator of the Post Exchange until the mid-1960s. As a World War II veteran, he was recently selected by the Rotary Club of Tuscaloosa to participate in an Honor Flight to Washington, D.C.

In addition to managing the family-owned business Union Furniture Company for more than 40 years, Mr. Christian contributed tirelessly to numerous civic organizations throughout his adult life. In 1955, he established the Northport Lions' Club where he served in several roles including President and Secretary and maintained perfect attendance for 57 years. He also served as the President of the Alabama Lions Sight Conservation. His great efforts within the Lions' Club were recognized through local and state awards, including the Lion International Master Key Award, Lion of the Year Award, and Lion of the Year Award for the State of Alabama. Mr. Christian also participated in the Easter Seals of West Alabama and served on the Northport City Council. He was recognized with a multitude of civic awards through his work with the Easter Seals, The Zula Walters Award for Camp Seale Harris, was named as the Northport Citizen of the Year in 1979, and was inducted into the Tuscaloosa County Civic Hall of Fame in 2009.

In addition to his military and civic service, he played a vital part in the overall progression of the educational system within Tuscaloosa County. Mr. Christian served on the Tuscaloosa County Board of Education from 1965 until 1970, during which time he was an instrumental leader in the desegregation of the Tuscaloosa County school system, inarguably the most explosive state of affairs that the Tuscaloosa County Board of Education has ever encountered.

Mr. Christian played a strong part in the expansion of Christianity within the community as a member of Gideons International for 35 years and, most notably, through the establishment of St. Mark United Methodist Church in Northport. He assisted in the acquisition of land and funds to begin the building of St. Mark United Methodist Church. As a charter member of St. Mark, he served on countless church committees, taught Sunday school classes, served as the church's only Treasurer for more than 30 years, and was fondly known as the "Gum Man" for distributing chewing gum to all of the children each Sunday. As a certified lay speaker with the United Methodist Church, he also provided support to many outlying churches within Tuscaloosa County by serving as an interim minister.

In spite of all of the contributions Mr. Christian made throughout his life, he remained a faithful and strong presence within his family. He most enjoyed spending time fishing with his son and grandchildren or visiting with his many dear friends.

Joseph A. Duckworth (1880-1976)

If you look back in the history of Tuscaloosa, you will see the handprints of Joe Duckworth on many significant economic, civic and community initiatives and lasting successes. Founder of the Duckworth-Morris Insurance Agency, Mr. Duckworth was a visionary business leader, later forming the Tuscaloosa Building & Loan Association, forerunner to First Federal Savings and Loan, serving as President and Chairman. In addition, he made a lasting impact through many other leadership roles including: serving as Chairman and a member of the Druid City Hospital Board and is recognized as one of the developers of the hospital; President of the Tuscaloosa Chamber of Commerce, the Rotary Club of Tuscaloosa, and the Alabama Association of Insurance Agents; a leader in the First United Methodist Church, and a variety of other important leadership roles. He was the Tuscaloosa Citizen of the Year in 1953 and played a key role in securing a hotel for Downtown Tuscaloosa.

Benjamin Belton Fields (1925-2009)

Longtime county extension service leader, Fields was a leader on the Boy Scouts board of directors; Benjamin Barnes branch of the Tuscaloosa Public Library; the Tuscaloosa Opportunity Board, which later became Community Services of West Alabama; United Way of West Alabama; Kiwanis Club; Family Counseling Services; Chamber of Commerce of West Alabama; and First African Baptist Church. He received the Alabama Association of County Agricultural Agents' highest honor, the Distinguished Service Award in 1984.