CL Tidwell

Over 250 community members gather to honor CL Tidwell with GHC’s first-ever Presidential Award for Community Impact

More than 250 community members and leaders came together for a special reception honoring CL Tidwell at Georgia Highlands College (GHC) in Cartersville. During the event, GHC President Mike Hobbs presented Tidwell with the first-ever Presidential Award for Community Impact.

The award honors someone in the Georgia Highlands College region with a dedication for helping to create a better, stronger community. This honor highlights a significant community member who exemplifies leadership, service, and has a legacy of community engagement.

During the reception, speakers included Tricia Pridemore, Paul Battles, and the Honorable Joe Campbell.

“As you heard today from our speakers, CL is a treasure in our community,” President Hobbs said. “In my short time at GHC, our leaders and partners almost unanimously point to CL Tidwell and his family for helping to create a better community.”

Tidwell was born in 1940 to Herschel and Ethel Tidwell. His childhood home was 508 Erwin Street in Cartersville. His dad worked for the EZ Mill and his mother was a stay-at-home mom.

In 1949, CL’s parents purchased 80 acres for $25 an acre and the family moved out in the country and began farming. Located on a dirt road, the house had no electricity or indoor plumbing.

CL and his siblings walked nearly two miles to catch a bus to attend Cassville school each day. At just 16 years old, CL left school to enter the workforce, and by age 19, CL purchased a plumbing license and officially began his career.

To this day, CL holds the oldest plumbing license in Cartersville, Georgia. Over the next few years, CL excelled in his career, got married to Doris at age 21 in 1961, and had two children, Carla and Michael.

“CL’s story is so similar to the story of our students at GHC,” President Hobb said. “This is their home. They live here. They learn here. They work here. And they make our community a better place.”

The reception was sponsored by Mark Sullins and Dr. Lance Barry.

CL Tidwell will be honored once more during the 7PM commencement ceremony at Georgia Highlands College on May 11.

View photos from the reception here.