Cherokee Arena at Gadsden State to be named for long-time supporter
Centre, Ala. — The Alabama Community College System Board of Trustees has approved the renaming of the largest sports venue in Cherokee County. During the May 11 board meeting, the decision was made to change the name of the Cherokee Arena to the Richard Lindsey Arena. The facility is located on Gadsden State Community College’s Cherokee County campus.
“We are delighted that we are able to honor and celebrate a man who has been so supportive of Gadsden State throughout the years,” said Dr. Kathy Murphy, president. “It is fitting that the arena is named for Mr. Lindsey considering he was very instrumental in securing the construction of the facility.”
Gadsden State Cherokee was constructed in response to community and governmental efforts to meet the growing educational needs in the region. The $22 million multi-level complex was constructed in 2008 and includes a 300-seat conference room, smaller meeting rooms, classrooms, learning laboratories and office space in addition to the 2,500-seat arena. The Cherokee County Chamber of Commerce also is housed on campus.
“Mr. Lindsey had a vision to increase educational opportunities in our service area,” Murphy said. “He worked hard to rally people for funding and support. As a result, collaborative partnerships were formed with local townships, the Cherokee County Commission, state and local leadership and ACCS. It was certainly a grassroots initiative that continues to promote education, economic growth and community development.”
Lindsey is widely known for serving nine consecutive terms in the Alabama House of Representatives. Elected for the first time in 1983, he served 10 years as the chairman of the Education Finance and Appropriations Committee. He served three terms as chairman of the House Agriculture Committee as well as several regional and national legislative committees.
During his legislative services, Lindsey was honored with numerous awards, including Legislator of the Year from the Alabama Rural Electric Cooperatives, State Representative of the Year from the Alabama Association of Conservation Districts and Lifetime Legislative Leadership Award from the Council for Leaders in Alabama Schools.
Lindsey is a co-owner of Cherokee Gin and Cotton Co., one of the largest gins in the south, and is a partner in a large farming operation called Coosa River Land Co. He is a member of the National Cotton Council, vice president of the National Cotton Ginners Association and president of the Southeastern Cotton Ginners Association. He is a long-time member of the Cherokee County Chamber of Commerce and has served on multiple boards, including the Cherokee County Assisted Living Federation of America, Coosa-Alabama River Improvement Association, First Southern State Bank, Cherokee County ALFA Organization and Howells Cemetery Association.
A naming ceremony for the Richard Lindsey Arena will take place at a later date.