Published on October 9, 2013 by Philip Poole  

Samford University President Andrew Westmoreland has been named the March of Dimes 2013 Alabama Citizen of the Year.

Westmoreland will be honored at the 19th Annual March of Dimes Alabama Citizen of the Year Testimonial Reception Tuesday, Nov. 19, 2013 at Samford's Leslie S. Wright Fine Arts Center. The reception is from 5:30-7:30 p.m., with a brief program scheduled at 6:30 p.m.

The March of Dimes Alabama Citizen of the Year honors an outstanding community partner in Alabama whose distinguished leadership and devoted service to the community have contributed greatly to the quality of life for Alabama and its people. The recipient is a person who, in the victory of achieving success and acclaim, has given back generously to others.

"We truly feel that Dr. Westmoreland and the relationship the March of Dimes shares with Samford University is something to be honored," says Senator Jabo Waggoner, March of Dimes Board Member. "We can think of no one more deserving to receive this distinguished award this year than our chosen recipient."

Westmoreland served as honorary chair for the March of Dimes March for Babies in 2008 and 2009, helping to raise more than $750K. In addition, he has been actively involved in the community through the Birmingham Kitchen Table project, which he cofounded with Birmingham public relations executive Shelley Stewart. He also is active in the Birmingham Business Alliance and the Rotary Club of Birmingham and supports several other charitable organizations and projects in the community. For 10 years, Samford has participated in the annual "home for the holidays" initiative with Habitat for Humanity, and Westmoreland always volunteers for that special project working alongside Samford students and employees.

As Samford's 18th president, Westmoreland has led the university to embrace a vision to enrich and expand its service to students and further inspire their desire to meet the needs of the world. Hundreds of Samford students, employees and alumni annually participate in more than 200 community service and ministry projects in the metropolitan area and around the world.

Since its inception, the Alabama Citizen of the Year event has raised more than $2 million for the March of Dimes.

This year's Alabama Citizen of the Year reception is presented by Samford University. All proceeds benefit the March of Dimes. For  more information on the event, please contact Katye Fuglaar, March of Dimes Senior Community Director, at (205) 588-0510 or e-mail kfuglaar@marchofdimes.


About the March of Dimes and Past Citizens of the Year

The March of Dimes is a national voluntary health agency whose mission is to improve the health of babies by preventing premature birth, birth defects and infant mortality. Founded in 1938 by Franklin D. Roosevelt, the March of Dimes funds programs of research, community services, education, and advocacy to save babies, and in 2003 launched a campaign to address the increasing rate of premature birth. Currently, the March of Dimes has more than $1,000,000 invested in Alabama community programs and research projects. For more information, visit the March of Dimes website at or its Spanish website at 

Past Citizen of the Year honorees are:

  • 2012, James C. Lee, III ("Jimmy"), Chairman & CEO, Buffalo Rock
  • 2011, Manolo Sanchez, Country President, BBVA
  • 2010, Terry Kellogg, President & CEO, Blue Cross Blue Shield of Alabama
  • 2009, Garry L. Gause, President & CEO, Brookwood Medical Center
  • 2008, Dr. Carol Z. Garrison, President, UAB
  • 2007, Bettye Fine Collins, President, Jefferson County Commission
  • 2006, Mayor Tony Petelos, City of Hoover
  • 2005, Sen. Jabo Waggoner, Alabama State Senate
  • 2004, Bill Taylor, President & CEO of Mercedes-Benz International
  • 2003, Gene Hallman, President & CEO, Alabama Sports Foundation



Samford is a leading Christian university offering undergraduate programs grounded in the liberal arts with an array of nationally recognized graduate and professional schools. Founded in 1841, Samford is the 87th-oldest institution of higher learning in the United States. Samford enrolls 5,791 students from 49 states, Puerto Rico and 16 countries in its 10 academic schools: arts, arts and sciences, business, divinity, education, health professions, law, nursing, pharmacy and public health. Samford fields 17 athletic teams that compete in the tradition-rich Southern Conference and ranks 6th nationally for its Graduation Success Rate among all NCAA Division I schools.