Dinner of Firsts Archive

Dinner of Firsts 2015 - A Golden Celebration

December 3, 2015 • Event Chairman: Edna Varner

Dinner of Firsts – A Golden Celebration toasted and roasted founding Chattanooga State Foundation board member John Germ in a fun and light-hearted way, and also celebrated the Golden Anniversary of Chattanooga State Community College for its 50 years of service to the community. More than 485 guests helped honor community leader and humanitarian John Germ who lives by the creed, “Service to humanity is the best work of life.” Event chair Edna Varner, with toasters and major sponsors Keith Sanford of First Tennessee and Greg Vital of Morning Pointe, joined roasters Patsy Hazelwood, Harry Fields, Dan Johnson, and Zach Wamp for some light-hearted banter and stories about Germ. More than $75,000 was raised thanks to the generosity of sponsors and donors, allowing Chattanooga State to fund 37 scholarships for first generation college students.

View Event Program

Dinner of Firsts 2014 - Youngest of Nine

Fant Caricature

October 23, 2014 • Event Chairman: Grady P. Williams

The 3nd annual Dinner of Firsts was held at the Chattanoogan on Thursday, October 23, 2014. Under the leadership of Grady P. Williams, Event Chairman, friends of the college toasted and roasted Leonard Fant with proceeds of the dinner funding First-in-the-Family Scholarships. The youngest of nine children, Leonard was the first in his family to finish college. Those roasting Leonard included James Rogers, Claude Ramsey, John Germ, Warren Logan, and Rhonda Catanzaro.

View Event Program

Dinner of Firsts 2013 - Led by Passion

October 17, 2013 • Event Chairman: W. Leonard Fant

The 2nd annual Dinner of Firsts was held at the Chattanoogan on Thursday, October 17, 2013. Under the leadership of Leonard Fant, Event Chairman, friends of the college toasted and roasted Grady Williams with proceeds of the dinner funding First-in-the-Family Scholarships. One of six children, Grady was the first in his family to go to college. Led by a passion to help others, he has successfully led many community organizations in their fund-raising efforts. Those who toasted Mr. Williams included Patsy Hazlewood, Tom Edd Wilson, Sonia Young, Craig Holley, and Fletcher Bright. With more than 400 in attendance, the group more than doubled the number of scholarships this year.

View Event Program

Dinner of Firsts 2012 - Inauguration

Catanzaro Caricature

October 11, 2012 • Event Chairman: W. Leonard Fant

The inaugural Chattanooga State Community College "Dinner of Firsts" was held on Thursday, October 11th, at the Chattanoogan Hotel to honor first generation college students. The college roasted and toasted Chattanooga State president Dr. Jim Catanzaro with proceeds of the dinner funding annual scholarships for the first generation students. Recently-retired UTC Chancellor Dr. Roger Brown, Dr. Neil Mohney and Chattanooga State Foundation chairman Archie Meyers are among those who roasted Dr. Catanzaro.

Dr. Catanzaro is himself the first in his family to attend college.

More than 80 percent of the Chattanooga State students are first-generation college students. As a result, First-in-the-Family program chairman W. Leonard Fant has led the way for the Chattanooga State Foundation to create a college-wide scholarship for this majority.

View Event Program