CSU Honors Columbus City Manager with Townsend Award

COLUMBUS, Ga. - Columbus State University will honor Isaiah Hugley during its 25th annual Black Applause Banquet Friday, Feb. 22 at the Elizabeth Bradley Turner Center.

Isaiah HugleyHugley, right, city manager for Columbus Consolidated Government since February 2005, will accept the Dr. John Townsend Achievement Award, named in honor of CSU’s first African-American student.

A CSU Black History Month tradition, the banquet will open with a 6:30 p.m. wine and cheese reception and dinner at 7 p.m. The event also will involve recognitions of outstanding local high school and CSU students, and a keynote speech by Columbus attorney Michael Eddings.

The Townsend Award recognizes community and-or professional service and achievement, and Hugley’s nominators cited both.

Hugley, married to state Rep. Carolyn Fleming Hugley, manages more than 2,700 employees and a $205 million budget in his present role. Earlier he served as deputy city manager and director of Columbus’ Department of Transportation and METRA transit system.

Also a leader among his peers, Hugley is president-elect of the Georgia City-County Managers Association, serves on the boards of directors for Uptown Columbus Inc. and the Greater Columbus, Ga., Chamber of Commerce, and is a member of both Leadership Georgia and Leadership Columbus.

“Isaiah Hugley’s greatest satisfaction comes from helping others and giving back to his community,” one nominator said.

Hugley is president of the West Central Georgia Cancer Coalition, serves on board of directors for the United Way of the Chattahoochee Valley, Inc., and serves on the Franchise Missionary Baptist Church Board of Deacons-Trustees.

He also is part of the 100 Black Men of America, Inc. National Board of Directors and serves as president of the organization’s Columbus chapter.

Additional service group memberships include the Civilian & Military Council and Rotary Club of Columbus.

Hugley, 50, was born in Crawford, Ala., and later moved with his family to Phenix City, then Columbus. He graduated from Spencer High School, earned a bachelor’s degree in history-pre-law from Talladega College (Ala.) and a master’s degree in public policy and public administration from Mississippi State University. His career started as a student teacher at MSU and a public management intern in the Mississippi Governor’s Office of Human Development. He later held positions at the Mississippi Council on Aging and the Mississippi Department of Energy and Transportation and returned to Columbus in 1984 as METRA assistant director.

Prior to Hugley’s award acceptance, banquet-goers will hear from keynote speaker Eddings, a former U.S. Army officer., who served 1994-1996 as commander of the U.S. Army Honor Guard Company at the White House and Pentagon. He later served as aide-de-camp to the Secretary of the Army.

Banquet tickets ($25) will not be sold at the door and are available until 5 p.m. today (Feb. 21) by calling 706-568-2273 or 706-565-3657.