Citadel Alumni Association announces annual Homecoming awards
The Citadel Alumni Association (CAA) honored outstanding alumni during Homecoming 2016. Presented annually, the awards and honors recognize graduates for contributions to their communities, their leadership and for support of their alma mater.
Alumnus of the Year
The Citadel Alumni Association named Al Kennickell, Class of 1977, the 2016 Citadel Alumnus of the Year for his example of principled leadership.
After graduating from The Citadel on a football scholarship with a bachelor’s degree in physical education, Kennickell returned to Savannah, Georgia to manage his family’s printing business. In 1981, he purchased Kennickell Printing Company from his family and built the business, now called The Kennickell Group, into a global company.
Using leadership skills learned at The Citadel, Kennickell is active in the Savannah business community. He served as chairman of the Savannah Area Chamber of Commerce, and as a member of the Greater Savannah Sports Council, the Executives’ Association of Savannah, The Savannah Community Foundation and the National Museum of the Mighty Eighth Air Force. He has also been the president of The Chatham Club, the Savannah Shamrocks Rugby Club and senior warden of the St. Thomas Episcopal Church. For twelve years he was the chairman of the PGA Tour’s Liberty Mutual Legends of Golf and is currently a trustee for the Heritage Classic Foundation, a nonprofit that is dedicated to improving lives throughout the state of South Carolina.
“Al Kennickell’s history of service to The Citadel and other organizations has been truly remarkable,” said Willis Tisdale, vice president of the CAA. “His willingness to donate his time to so many causes, while running an internationally known company brings great honor and positive recognition to our alma mater and our alumni. His hard work and determination shows his dedication to the core values of The Citadel.”
Currently serving as president of The Citadel Brigadier Foundation, Kennickell has helped lead the organization to unprecedented success with records set in donations and memberships. A lifetime member of the CAA, The Citadel Football Association and the Diamond Dogs, he has opened his home to many Citadel events over the last 30 years. He has been financially generous to The Citadel through planned contributions and printing donations.
Distinguished Life Member
Walter Bunt graduated from The Citadel in 1969 with a bachelor’s degree in political science. He is a member of both the CAA and The Citadel Brigadier Foundation, and has distinguished himself in acts of service and humanity to The Citadel.
Bunt was instrumental in the resurgence of the Greater Pittsburgh area Citadel alumni club and developed the charter and by-laws for the 2013 Alumni Club of the Year. He plays a significant role for the club in recruiting new members, and mentoring student athletes who have been selected for scholarships for football, baseball, and wrestling. He also diligently works to identify and secure employment opportunities for Citadel graduates and provides pro-bono legal assistance to alumni when needed.
As an equity partner with the international law firm K&L Gates, Bunt possesses many career and occupational achievements which bring significant credit to The Citadel. For over 30 years, he has represented natural gas and coal bed methane producers, pipeline companies, natural gas reservoir operators and utilities. He is nationally recognized and has been named “Who’s Who in Energy” by The Pittsburgh Business Times. In 2013, he was named a top rated lawyer in “Energy, Environmental and Land Use Law” by American Lawyer Media and Martindale-Hubbell. He is currently a principal author of 13 publications covering several aspects of energy development.
Bunt's accomplishments reflect the importance of his education at The Citadel. He continues to exemplify the core values of the college in his private and professional life.
Carroll N. LeTellier Award
The Carroll N. LeTellier Award recognizes a member of the CAA who has rendered extraordinary service or achievement to the CAA and its members. The award is given in recognition of exemplary lifetime or superior yearly contributions, service and achievements.
Joseph J. (Jay) Keenan received his bachelor’s in business administration from The Citadel in 1967 and has served with distinction as a representative of the CAA. As a founding partner of Palmetto Commercial Properties and commercial real estate expert, he has negotiated with the General Services Administration on behalf of the CAA for a lease of Hollings Hall for the Army Corps of Engineers.
In 1979, Keenan achieved Certified Commercial Investment Member (CCIM) designation making him among the first 1000 people to receive the prestigious designation nationally, and among the first 10 in South Carolina.
Keenan is currently a senior instructor for the CCIM Institute and has taught for over 30 years. He has traveled extensively in the United States, Canada, Taiwan, and throughout Eastern Europe to provide education on commercial investment real estate.
He was former president of both the South Carolina CCIM chapter and the Charleston Trident Association of Realtors. As a result of his exemplary performance, in 1996 he was designated the Realtor of the Year. Over the course of several decades, Keenan has supported The Citadel through volunteer work and donations.
Arland D. Williams Society
The Arland D. Williams Society was created in 2000 to recognize Citadel graduates who have distinguished themselves through community service, heroism and bravery. The society is named for Arland D. Williams, Citadel Class of 1957. Williams died in the icy Potomac River in 1982 saving five fellow passengers aboard Air Florida Flight 90 after it crashed into the 14th Street Bridge in Washington, D.C. Rather than
take a life ring to save himself, Williams passed the ring to five others before he drowned in the river.
David Goff, received his bachelor’s in civil engineering with the Class of 1978, has been inducted into the Arland D. Williams Society for his gallant and courageous action while on duty as a Richland County Sheriff’s Deputy. He rushed to action after receiving a transmission that a man was poised to jump off an overpass in Columbia. While another deputy calmed the distraught man, Goff – with much danger to himself – grabbed the man and pulled him to safety. Goff’s exceptional courage was pivotal in saving the life of a citizen.
Goff exemplifies The Citadel's mission of providing educated, disciplined and principled leaders to the communities of the world and he proudly characterizes the spirit and humility of all Arland D. Williams Society inductees.
About The Citadel
The Citadel, with its iconic campus located in Charleston, South Carolina offers a classic military college education for young men and women profoundly focused on leadership excellence and academic distinction. Approximately 30 percent of the South Carolina Corps of Cadets commission as officers in every branch of U.S. military service upon graduating. Citadel alumni have served the nation, their state and their communities as principled leaders since the college was founded in 1842. The Citadel Graduate College offers more than 70 graduate degrees, graduate certificates, and evening undergraduate programs with many courses available online. The Citadel has been named Best Public College in the South for six consecutive years, and #1 Best Public College for Veterans in the South by U.S. News and World Report, as well as the best value out of all South Carolina colleges and universities, by Forbes.