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Lawson State Alumnus Establishes Scholarship


3060 Wilson Road
Birmingham, AL 35221

Contact: Geri Albright
Director of Public Relations
(205) 929-6315

Lawson State Alumnus Establishes Scholarship

On April 1, 2008, Lawson State Community College had the pleasure of hosting the Promotion Ceremony of Lieutenant Colonel Leernest Ruffin, the commander of the 78th Communications Squadron at the Robins Air Force Base in Warner Robbins, Georgia. In addition to his promotion ceremony, Ruffin, Lawson State alum, established a scholarship in honor of his former pastor, Reverend N.H. Pollard, Sr. The event took place in the A.G. Gaston Auditorium on the Birmingham East Campus. An educational event for students, there were video presentations by Lt. General Edward A. Rice, Lt. Colonel Ivan D. Murray and Sergeant Adourian Ruffin. Nathaniel Pollard, Jr. spoke at the event and was preceded by Tony Lloyd of the Birmingham Black Barons. The scholarship was presented to the College by Lt. Colonel Ruffin and his family. Mrs. Ebony Pollard graced those present with a moving performance of “Lift Every Voice and Sing.”

The scholarship tribute included a proper introduction of Reverend Pollard given by Ruffin. Reverend Pollard, formerly a petty officer in the United States Navy, served the country during World War II before returning home to Alabama and gracing the Birmingham Black Barons with his curveball. Pitching with the Black Barons during the late 1940s Pollard posted credible marks in 1946 and 1948, respectively, and closed out his Negro League career in 1950 with a 7-3 ledger. In addition to all of his accomplishments, he successfully mentored Ruffin and many other Birmingham natives as is prevalent in a look at Ruffin’s accolades.

As the commander, he leads a team of nearly 500 professionals responsible for over $50M in communications and information management systems supporting over 25,000 personnel assigned to the Warner Robbins Air Logistics Center. He’s provided technical assistance to the Egyptian Air Force on 15 major FMS cases valued at over $1.4 billion. He also provided continuous secure and non-secure telecommunications support to the President of the United States, White House Senior Staff, DoD Elements and others as directed by the White House Military Office.

Lt. Colonel Ruffin is a native of Birmingham, Alabama, and a graduate of Midfield High School. In May 1987, he enlisted in the United States Air Force. Ruffin is married to the former Lillian (Ann) Whitsett of Mobile, Alabama. They have two sons named Martez and Markell and one daughter, Makaila.

Now, due to the giving spirit of one Lawson State Alumnus, Reverend Michael Pollard will be able to provide a qualifying student with continuing membership at Triumph the Church of God and Kingdom of God In Christ with the opportunity to attend Lawson State Community College.

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