MONTGOMERY, AL (WBRC) - What do Alabama head football Coach Nick Saban, Apple CEO Tim Cook and U.S. Senator Jeff Sessions have in common? They are all members of the incoming class of the Alabama Academy of Honor.
The Alabama Academy of Honor will welcome eight new members Monday, October 27, at 11 a.m. in the old House Chambers of the State Capitol in Montgomery. The Academy is limited to 100 living Alabamians, honored for their outstanding accomplishments and services.
This year's inductees are:
- University of Alabama President Judy Bonner
- Apple CEO Tim Cook
- Big Oak Ranch Founder John Croyle
- HudsonAlpha co-founder Jim Hudson
- Civic Leader Margaret Porter
- Alabama Football Coach Nick Saban
- U.S. Senator Jeff Sessions
- Business Executive Edgar Welden
Tim Cook, who is a native of Robertsdale, will make remarks on behalf of the incoming class.
The Alabama Academy of Honor was created by the Alabama State Legislature in 1965.
The organization released the following biographical information about this year's inductees:
Judy Bonner: A native of Camden, Dr. Bonner is President of The University of Alabama, where her 30-year career has included leadership positions as dean, vice president and provost before she assumed the presidency in 2012. Under her watch, the university has achieved unprecedented growth in size, stature and quality.
Tim Cook: Following a 12-year career with IBM, Cook joined Apple in 1998 as senior vice president for worldwide operations, became chief operating officer in 2005 and succeeded founder Steve Jobs as CEO in 2011. Cook is considered one of the most recognized and respected names in business and technology.
John Croyle: A native of Gadsden, Croyle was a scholarship football player for The University of Alabama who went on to found the Big Oak Boys' Ranch and Big Oak Girls' Ranch. Croyle, his family and staff have given nearly 2,000 children – most often abused and neglected – a new life.
Jim Hudson, Jr.: A Huntsville native, Hudson is co-founder and was the first president of the HudsonAlpha Institute for Biotechnology, which has positioned Alabama as a world leader in biotech research and one of the premier places in the nation for high-wage jobs in biotechnology and related fields.
Margaret Porter: Porter has devoted her career to public service in her hometown of Birmingham and the state of Alabama. A veteran civic leader, she is former mayor of Mountain Brook and a past pro tem of the Mountain Brook City Council who has led the development of numerous projects to enhance the quality of life for children and adults.
Nick Saban: A transplanted Alabamian, Saban was named head football coach at The University of Alabama in 2007. A five-time National Coach of the Year who is among a handful of coaches to win four national titles in the modern era, he is also an author and philanthropist whose Nick's Kids Fund provides financial support for numerous charitable organizations.
Sen. Jeff Sessions: A Selma native, Sen. Sessions has served in the United States Senate since 1997, where he is the ranking member of the Senate Budget Committee. He has led the passage of major legislation that addresses priority issues ranging from wilderness protection to equitable funding for programs that aid low-income Alabamians.
Edgar Welden: A native of Wetumpka, Welden has built a highly successful career in business while also devoting more than 50 years to public service including tenure as director of the Alabama Development Office and the Alabama Department of Economic and Community Affairs and chairmanship of the Alabama Sports Hall of Fame.