Lewis Adams to the rescue once again


TUSKEGEE, Ala. (March 17, 2011) — When Tuskegee University's president, Dr. Gilbert Rochon, was suddenly obligated to close historic Tompkins Hall for major repairs to its roof and dome, the search intensified for an interim kitchen facility and dining hall for students. The Kellogg Hotel and Conference Center was initially utilized for both functions; however, that could not be a long-term solution to the problem, without impacting Kellogg's regular clientele and scheduled special events.


The recently renovated Logan Hall was subsequently pulled into service as a temporary dining facility, although it had no kitchen facilities. The cost and lead-time for acquiring a mobile kitchen facility sufficient for food preparation for thousands of students, three times a day, were both prohibitive. Sodexo, the company contracted to manage Tuskegee University's food service and physical plant, was able to temporarily provide cold meals, using the Kellogg kitchen facilities.


Ultimately, just as Lewis Adams provided the impetus for the first $2,000 for Booker T. Washington to initiate the Normal School (the forerunner of Tuskegee Institute, later known as Tuskegee University), the neighboring public school bearing the name of Lewis Adams came to the rescue. With approval of the Macon County School Board, Sodexo renovated the school's unused kitchen and as of this week, Tuskegee University's students now again have three hot meals per day. Sodexo director of food services, Pamela Sparks Smith, and Sodexo facilities manager, Tory Ward, both deserve credit for the rapid deployment and dedication of their respective staffs in resolving the crisis.


This is the latest example of “town and gown” collaboration in the City of Tuskegee.


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