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MAY 23rd

Janet Cobb - Executive Director, USS Alabama Battleship Park

MAY 30th

Walt Maddox - Mayor of Tuscaloosa





The Nerve

The Nerve - May 16, 2017

The Nerve - May 9, 2017

The Nerve - May 2, 2017

The Nerve - April 25, 2017

The Nerve - April 18, 2017

The Nerve - April 11, 2017

The Nerve - April 4, 2017







Read Past Issues of the Tuscaloosa Rotary Nerve


Greg Byrne – UA Athletic Director – May 16, 2017

One of the most acclaimed and respected administrators in collegiate athletics, Greg Byrne was formally introduced as The University of Alabama’s Director of Athletics on January 19, 2017, and officially began his tenure leading the department on March 1. Byrne’s role at Alabama is his third venture at the helm of a major collegiate athletics program. Prior to coming to Alabama, Byrne was Vice President for Athletics at the University of Arizona from 2010-17 and was Director of Athletics at Mississippi State University from 2008-10. With more than 20 years of experience as an athletics administrator, Byrne has fashioned an impressive administrative career hallmarked by consistent success in fundraising, innovative strategies and competitive success with a strong emphasis on academic excellence. As the son of veteran athletics administrator Bill Byrne, one of the nation’s most prominent college sports administrators with 30 years of experience as an Athletics Director, Greg Byrne has been around the enterprise of running successful athletic programs for most of his life. A native of Pocatello, Idaho, Byrne earned his bachelor’s degree from Arizona State University in 1994 and his master’s degree from Mississippi State University in 2009. Byrne is married to the former Regina Misa of Junction City, Ore., and the couple has two sons, Nick and Davis.


Rotary Club of Tuscaloosa Tuscaloosa Rotary Honor Flight – May 10, 2017

Rotary Honor Flight to Take Vietnam Veterans to Washington, DC 

Tuscaloosa Rotary Honor Flight 8 to Depart Wednesday,  May 10th

May 8, 2017, Tuscaloosa, Al – Vietnam War Veterans will have an opportunity for a one-day trip to Washington, DC, to visit their war memorials on Wednesday, May 10, 2017. Rotary Club trip organizers say the Honor Flight filled quickly as many Vietnam Veterans had been waiting for an opportunity to participate. 

Since May 2010, The Rotary Club of Tuscaloosa has transported 565 World War II and Korean War Veterans to Washington, DC. The trip includes stops at the Vietnam Veterans Memorial, World War II and Korean War Memorials, Lincoln Memorial, Iwo Jima Memorial, Arlington National Cemetery Changing of the Guard, FDR Memorial & the Pentagon 9/11 Memorial.

The group will depart from the Hawthorne Global Aviation Terminal (formerly Bama Air) at the Tuscaloosa Regional Airport on a chartered Boeing 737 at 6:30 am on May 10 and will return that evening at 8:30 pm. Guardians and medical professionals who provide assistance as needed throughout the day will accompany the group. At the Baltimore airport a General from the Pentagon, military personnel and the local Honor Flight committee will greet the group.

From Baltimore the 168 person group will travel on three tour buses to the Vietnam Veterans Memorial where their elected officials will meet them. At each stop throughout the day, tourists and fellow Veterans from around the country will recognize our Veterans.  At the end of a long day, they will be welcomed home by a water salute from the local fire department and a walk down the red carpet to patriotic music and the cheers of a flag-waving hometown crowd.  

Alan Hartley, President of The Rotary Club of Tuscaloosa said “These veterans were sent to fight a war that we as a country probably did not fully prepare them for and probably did not provide adequate support.  But they did their duty,  and they fought for America.  We are excited about honoring them through this Honor Flight because they did go about fulfilling their duty, they defended this country, and they did all that was asked of them as soldiers.  They could not control the politics of the time, but they did what was asked of them by putting their lives at risk for America.”  Jordan Plaster, Chairman of Tuscaloosa Rotary Honor Flight said, “This 8th Honor Flight will be something special.  The healing process from any war has to be difficult.  The Vietnam War Veterans were exposed to the many horrors that come with war.  The way these veterans were treated when they returned home from the war was bad.  We are hoping that when these veterans participate on the Honor Flight, that they will see that people from all over the country are going to treat them as heroes.  We hope that this can be part of a final healing process for them.” Becky York, Honor Flight Director said, “The purpose of Honor Flight 8 is to recognize and thank our Vietnam Veterans who were sent to fight an unpopular war in extremely difficult conditions.  They returned home not to be treated as heroes, but to be disrespected.  Yet,  when speaking with these Veterans, I continue  to be amazed by their responses.  They have not talked about horrors or sacrifices.  It’s been difficult to even get them to tell where they were stationed or what their jobs were.  Instead, they say how honored they are to be selected for this Honor Flight.” “It’s a dream come true !”      “I never thought I’d get to go to Washington to see the memorials  !”   York added, “These quotes have been the  typical response of the Vietnam Veterans as they completed their applications.” Plaster, Hartley & York added,  “Wednesday Honor Flight will truly be an Honor for all.  So, please join us for the Welcome Home Celebration Wednesday night beginning at 7:45 PM.  The airplane with over 100 Vietnam Veterans will arrive at the Hawthorne Global Aviation Terminal (formerly Bama Air) at Tuscaloosa Regional Airport at 8:30 pm.”

The trip is FREE for qualifying Vietnam War Veterans.  Each Guardian pays $700 for the privilege of accompanying our heroes on the Honor Flight.  The Honor Flights are funded through generous donations from area companies, organizations, and individuals. Members of the Rotary Club of Tuscaloosa provide funding, resources and time to make the trips possible.

For more information on signing up as a Veteran or Guardian for a future Honor Flight or to make a tax-deductible contribution phone or text Jordan Plaster at 205-310-7579 or email at Jordan.plaster@ampf.com


 Tuscaloosa Rotary Honor Flight Board of Directors

Jordan Plaster – Chairman  
Alan Hartley – Treasurer   
Becky York – Honor Flight Director

Clark Swail      
Chuck Turner     
Harry Shumaker      
Blake Jackson       
Jack Pfaudler     
Brad Springer    
Ryan Stallings     
Katie Hancock     
David Albright    
Wade Drinkard   
Thomas Powe
Jordan Forrest     
James Shirley    
Nick Britto     
Lauren Forrest


Donna Aaron – Mayor, City of Northport – May 9, 2017

Mayor Aaron is married to Sonny Aaron and havs two sons and daughters-in-law Michael and Laura, Brian and Goodloe, and 5 grandchildren.

She grew up in Wetumpka, Alabama, graduated from Wetumpka High School, and graduated from the University of Alabama with a bachelor’s degree in Mathematics and a master’s degree in Math Education. Donna taught for 30 years in the Tuscaloosa County School System, 28 of those years at Tuscaloosa County High. Presently, she is an adjunct math instructor at the University of Alabama and math tutor for the athletic department. Her family are members of the First United Methodist Church of Northport. She has served two terms on the Northport City Council (1992-2000) and was city council president for five of those years.  Instrumental in helping move Northport forward in a very positive direction, she was involved with the widening of Watermelon Road, Mercedes, Walmart Super Center, the present TCHS, the levee, improvements to downtown Northport, present city shop, police station, and the fire station, just to name a few.

Her goals are to work with the council and citizens to bring new and different retail development to the City, to improve and enhance recreational activities, evaluate infrastructure, and begin updating those areas that need to be replaced or improved.  Her goals are also to secure a strong financial basis and make government open and transparent to the citizens.


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