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Waycross Rotary Recognizes Charlie Gibson for “Service above Self”

Okefenokee Technical College’s Charlie Gibson was honored February 5, 2013, by the Rotary Club of Waycross for exceeding the normal expectations of duty in the workplace to help others and promote the mission of the organization. Gibson, OTC career services director, was nominated for the award by the OTC faculty and staff who applauded Charlie for his work with students and employers in the Office of Career Placement and for the extent in which he promotes OTC in the community.  

Ed Avra (left), scholarship director of the Waycross Rotary Club, presented Gibson with the Rotary Club “Service above Self” award at the meeting. “I’m surprised and very honored,” said Gibson. “This means a lot to me.”

According to Dr. Deibert, Gibson has held the position of career services director since 2006. Prior to that, he was the OTC Tech Prep Coordinator (1999-2006). Gibson holds a bachelor’s degree in business administration from the University of Georgia and a master’s degree in education from Valdosta State University.

Gibson’s colleagues describe him as a “team player, putting the needs of the team before himself,” “willing to do whatever it takes,” and “champion for taking things seriously, but making the work fun.” “Charlie attacks his job ‘head on’ with enthusiasm and bulldog determination,” stated one of his co-workers.

“You couldn’t ask for a better ambassador for technical education,” stated another co-worker. Charlie is the OTC Student Ambassador advisor and is constantly promoting OTC to potential students, employers, and the community at large. He provides opportunities for student ambassadors to do the same, encouraging them to attend chamber functions and college events to help them establish and build relationships with community leaders. He sets the example himself at every occasion as a staunch supporter of higher education. 

“OTC’s placement rates are the telling factor of the College’s success in accomplishing its mission, workforce development, and Charlie works diligently throughout the year to attain an accurate measurement and 100% placement,” said Danita Cannon, vice president for student affairs. “Charlie works hard to match the needs of graduates and employers using input from instructors.”

“For FY11, the most current year available, OTC’s overall placement rate is 97.36% and the in-field placement rate is 86.06%. These rates are a testament to Charlie’s work, interpersonal skills, and resolve, in cooperation with the work of the faculty and staff and advisory boards in accomplishing academic excellence.

Gibson demonstrates other characteristics of generosity and professionalism, as well, through his service to and membership in numerous community organizations.
In true form, after Ed Avra recognized him, Gibson asked if he could address Rotary members. In about 30 seconds, Charlie demonstrated one of the reasons he was nominated for the award. As one OTC employee put it, “Put Charlie before a group, and not only will the audience learn and laugh, but they’ll leave knowing that Charlie Gibson is enthusiastically passionate about what he does.”

Using various popular marketing slogans, Gibson made a plug for OTC to Rotary members who, by all means, hire OTC graduates or are potential employers of OTC graduates. He closed with this: “The window sign read…  “I hired an OTC Graduate!”  If this sign is not in your window, maybe you should consider… hiring an OTC graduate next time!”

Rotary president Paul Thein and OTC President Dr. Glenn Deibert again congratulated Gibson for being selected as the 2012 recipient of the “Service Above Self” award among OTC employees.

Photo 1

Photo: 1
Charlie Gibson (center) was honored by the Waycross Rotary recently for helping others and exhibiting a dedication to OTC and students that exceeds normal expectations of duties and responsibilities. Ed Avra (left), scholarship director of the Waycross Rotary Club, presented Gibson with the Rotary Club “Service above Self” award for Okefenokee Technical College. Dr. Glenn Deibert (right), OTC president, was on hand to congratulate Gibson.

Photo 2

Photo: 2
Following the award presentation, Rotary members were treated to a 30-second OTC promotional by Charlie Gibson. As career services director at Okefenokee Technical College, Mr. Gibson assists OTC graduates in attaining a career in their field of study and employers in gaining a highly skilled workforce.

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