Mr. Parker is a local businessman who serves as President of Parker Towing Company. He has served as Chairman of the Industrial Development Authority and currently serves as the Chairman of the Alabama Port Authority and as a member of the national Corp of Engineers Inland Waterway User Board of Directors.
Historically, Tuscaloosa has relied on the Black Warrior River for industrial jobs. This dependency continues today with companies such as Nucor Steel, Hunt Oil, Drummond Coal, and Jim Walter Resources. These companies, along with Parker Towing, create thousands of jobs for Tuscaloosa County. His leadership and public service as past President of the Tennessee-Tombigbee Waterway Council ensured that these jobs would remain in the West Alabama area.
Mr. Parker believes in the importance of service to his community, state and country. He has served as Chairman of the United Way Campaign, which is the largest annual fundraiser in West Alabama. He and Parker Towing generously support many other local charities and campaigns as well.
He has also served as an officer in the United States Army during the Vietnam War and as a Representative in the State Legislature for twelve years.
Currently, he serves on the President's Cabinet at the University of Alabama and as a member of the Board of Visitors of the Culverhouse School of Business at the University. He also serves on the Board of Directors of Mercedes-Benz International, Inc.
Mr. Phelps practiced law in Tuscaloosa for more than 45 years. While in Tuscaloosa, he served on the DCH Health System Board of Trustees and served as Chairman of this Board from 1976 to 2000. During his tenure on the Board, he has a major and lasting impact not only on the DCH Health System, but on many hospitals throughout Alabama.
While he was the Chairman of the Board of Trustees, he helped DCH evolve from a community hospital to a tertiary regional medical center to a health system serving 10 West Alabama counties. Under his direction, the regional cancer treatment center opened, state-of-the-art diagnostic equipment was placed in all DCH facilities, and a home health agency was established.
Mr. Phelps also helped DCH facilities become clinical training sites for medical students, nurses, pharmacists, radiological technologists and other health care professionals. Many of these individuals stay in West Alabama to meet the region's need for health care professionals.
His influence has extended beyond Tuscaloosa County. He helped to establish the Healthcare Authority Act, a state law which allows the state's public hospitals to compete with for-profit hospitals. More than thirty public hospitals in Alabama have incorporated under this law so that they can continue to compete with for-profit hospitals and serve the medically indigent and underinsured.
Dr. Randall has spent a lifetime trying to make Tuscaloosa a better place to live and work and has touched thousands of lives for the betterment of the community.
She is the Chairman of the Board of Pettus Randall Holdings, LLC, and she has served as the Chairman of the Board of Randall Publishing Company and Director of the University Honors Programs at The University of Alabama.
Dr. Randall is Chairman of the Alabama Academy of Honor (the one hundred most outstanding living Alabamians) and has served as National President of Mortar Board, Inc., President of the Board of Directors of the Alabama Women's Hall of Fame, and as Director of Alabama Girls State.
She has also served as a member of the Boards of Directors of Mercedes Benz USI, the American Village, the National Collegiate honors Council, the Alabama Shakespeare Festival, the Alabama Law Foundation, the Alabama Archives and History Foundation, the Alabama Center for Civic Life, and the Tuscaloosa City Schools Education Foundation.
Recently, Dr. Randall was appointed as a member of the Tornado Recovery Action Council of Alabama (TRAC), developing recommendations for long-term recovery following the tornadoes of April 2011.
Ms. Washington has a passion for serving others through promoting mental health. During her 45-year career as a mental health professional, she served on boards for various agencies, including the Governor's Advisory Board on Alcoholism, the Governor's Task Force on Drunk Driving, Phoenix House Inc., The Governor's Volunteer Program, The Tuscaloosa Leadership Conference, Tuscaloosa Woman's Place, Community Service Programs of West Alabama, Crescent East Channel One, and Tuscaloosa Housing Authority.
Working in mental health, her focus was on those struggling with addictions. She, along with her sister, donated the first house used as a satellite center, which was later named the Insight Center. Clients who were intimidated by a formal office setting felt welcomed at the Insight Center. The Center was later named the Bernice Hudson Washington Center in honor and recognition of her work in mental health.
Working with at-risk children was also a passion. She focused her attention on Crescent East, a public housing facility known as a rough area with high drug infestation. There, she organized the Channel One program. Now, several Channel One participants have become productive citizens.
Her influence in developing adequate services and programs in mental health has greatly impacted the lives of countless individuals who are now mentally healthy and assets to the community.
Ms. Wells has spent over fifty years giving thousands of minority and disadvantaged children the gift of music. Free music lessons are taught through Zelpha's Cultural Development Corporation. It has been her calling to show children that, if they can accomplish learning to play the piano, they can accomplish anything.
Zelpha's Cultural Development Corporation (ZCDC) was formed in 1976, where she gave free thirty-minute lessons to hundreds of students in seventeen different city and county schools. During the summer months, she also provided free music instruction to students who could not attend her classes during the school year.
Ms. Wells also taught music in the Tuscaloosa City School system for twenty one years and taught Applied Piano at Stillman College. She was inducted into the Alabama Jazz Hall of Fame in 1986 and a recorded interview featuring her and several of her students and their parents has been catalogued and included in the Library of Congress.
She was named Tuscaloosa Arts Council's Music Educator of the Year in 1989, received the Governor's State Award in 1993, and was honored as Grand Marshall in the 1997 Tuscaloosa County Christmas Parade for her services to the community. She was also featured in TIME magazine in 1997 as a "Local Hero".
Ms. Wells has performed at many prestigious venues and events including the Alabama Governor's Mansion and the Inaugural Reception for Governor Guy Hunt.
The 2012 honorees will be inducted in downtown Tuscaloosa's Government Plaza on October 30 at 3pm. In case of inclement weather, the event will be held at First Presbyterian Church, located nearby at 900 Greensboro Avenue. Light refreshments will be served. There is no cost to attend the event. Please RSVP to Carolyn Tubbs at 205-391-0556 or firstname.lastname@example.org.