Former State Bar executive earns Alabama Humanities service award

Alabama Humanities Foundation will honor Reggie Hamner, former secretary and executive director of the Alabama State Bar Association, with the Wayne Greenhaw Service to the Humanities Award Oct. 1 at The Alabama Colloquium.

The Colloquium will be held at the Birmingham Museum of Art, beginning at 10:30 a.m.

The award, presented during Alabama Humanities Foundation’s annual awards event, is given in recognition of a past or present board member for outstanding service to AHF. First awarded in 2012,it is named in honor of author and journalist Wayne Greenhaw, who died in 2011.

Always committed to a better Alabama for its citizens, Hamner served 11 years as a director of the Alabama Humanities Foundation, first elected in 2004. After his elected terms expired, he was appointed as one of the Governor’s appointees. He has served as treasurer of AHF and, at times, a member of most AHF committees, including Grants, Nominating, Finance, Search, Executive, and chairing the Long Range Planning Committee.

He served on the AHF Liaison Committee as liaison to the Alabama Shakespeare Festival and the Encyclopedia of Alabama.

While he had earlier served as state chair for the Alabama Rhodes Scholar Selection Committee for a five-year term, he strongly believed in the AHF Road Scholars program and the Smithsonian traveling exhibits.

He is most proud of AHF’s outreach. He recalled that AHF programs and grants reached about 27 Alabama counties when he joined the AHF board and during his recent service, the reach is now to all 67 counties.

Hamner was a strong supporter of an AHF Endowment. As state and federal funding for the Humanities were being cut or threatened annually, the need for a safety net to continue AHF’s responsibilities needed a non-governmental source of revenues. On his motion, the AHF Board established an endowment with an independent source of revenues for AHF.

A most successful celebration of the 50th anniversary of the publication of To Kill A Mocking Bird provided the initial gift to the endowment.

Hamner is a native of Northport.  He was valedictorian of the 1957 Class of Tuscaloosa County High School. He obtained both an undergraduate degree and law degree from the University of Alabama. He has remained an active alumnus and served as President of the UA National Alumni Association. The NAA named him its Distinguished Alumnus in 2004.

He began his legal career in Montgomery as a law clerk at the Supreme Court of Alabama in 1965. Following his clerkship, he served on active duty as a Judge Advocate in the U.S. Air Force. He remained in the active reserves, retiring as a colonel after 30 years of service in 1995. Upon his release from active duty, he returned to Montgomery, where he resides today.

He entered the association management field as director of Legal and Legislative Affairs for the Medical Association of Alabama.

He was elected as secretary and executive director of the Alabama State Bar on June 1, 1969, and retired in 1994. He was one of the first two Alabama association executives to earn the Certified Association Executive designation by examination from the American Society of Association Executives. He served as president of the Alabama Council of Association Executives and the National Association of Bar Executives.

Serving in the American Bar Association’s governing House of Delegates for 10 years, he was a charter member of the ABA Standing Committee of Bar Activities and Services and the first bar executive to serve on the ABA Standing Committee on Continuing Legal Education, which launched the first offerings of continuing legal education by satellite.

After his service with the Alabama State Bar, he was selected to be the Court Project Coordinator representing the U.S. District Court during the construction of the annex to the Frank M. Johnson, Jr. Federal Building and U.S. Courthouse. He later served the same role in the restoration and renovation of the Frank M. Johnson, Jr. Federal Building and U.S. Courthouse.

He continues to serve on the court’s History Committee and recently completed 12 years as a trustee of the Eleventh U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals Historical Society. He serves on the Alabama State Bar Lawyers Hall of Fame Selection Committee.

He is married to the former Anne Ellen Young of New York, a registered nurse and patient educator. He met Anne when she, too, was serving in the Air Force as a Registered Nurse. They are the parents of two grown sons.

They are parishioners at St. John’s Episcopal Church, where he has served on the vestry. He also serves on the Department of Development for the Episcopal Diocese of Alabama and had previously served two terms on the Diocesan Disciplinary Board.


About the Colloquium

National Public Radio’s Michel Martin will moderate the Colloquium with an expanded format that features nine Fellows in two lively conversational sessions.

Following up on 2017’s highly successful inaugural event, the sessions will focus on powerful discussions by the Fellows on their roots, views and the underlying impact humanities has had in their lives.

The 2018 Alabama Humanities Fellows are:

  • Nall Hollis, known as Nall, a Southern American artist with an international following.
  • Gina Locklear, founder of Zkano, an online retailer of organic cotton socks manufactured in Fort Payne that is revolutionizing the industry.
  • Bobby McAlpine, self-described architect, romantic, poet and entrepreneur.
  • Martha Bouyer, Executive Director of Historic Bethel Baptist Church Foundation, Bouyer developed and has served as project director for twelve “Stony the Road We Trod…” National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) sponsored institutes in Alabama.
  • Mary Margaret Pettway, a third-generation quilter and member of the Gee’s Bend Quilters Collective.
  • Margot Shaw, founder and editor of flower Magazine, the only floral lifestyle magazine in the country.
  • Joyce Vance, former US attorney in Alabama, professor at University of Alabama School of Law and regular contributor of political analysis on MSNBC.
  • Peggy Wallace Kennedy, daughter of former Alabama Gov. George Wallace and known across the country as a voice for peace and reconciliation.
  • Andrew Westmoreland, president of Samford University.

In the expanded Colloquium format, Fellows will be featured in morning and afternoon sessions. Lunch will be served in between the two sessions, and attendees may attend one or both.

The morning session features Kennedy, Pettway, Vance and Westmoreland. Bouyer, Nall, Locklear, McAlpine and Shaw anchor the afternoon session. Tickets are $85 each, and valet parking and lunch are included in the price.

Sponsorship levels with program recognition and guest tickets are available.

For more information or to order your tickets, go to:

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