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Orange County Educational Foundation honors Frank Turnage
Germanna Community College President Emeritus Frank Turnage received the Orange County Education Foundation ‘s Lifetime Contribution Award Sunday at Montpelier.
Turnage was president of Germanna for over 20 years.
Current GCC President David A. Sam told the crowd at Montpelier that it was tough succeeding Turnage, whom he called “a great college president and a very gracious southern gentleman.”
“It’s much easier to succeed a lousy president,” Sam joked. “Following someone who was in many ways a local legend was a challenge.”
Because of Turnage’s leadership, Sam said, Germanna grew to become the seventh largest community college in Virginia, expanding from its original Locust Grove Campus location to Spotsylvania and Culpeper counties.
Turnage responded to Sam: “I think we did OK. However, I need to say I couldn’t be happier over your accomplishments at Germanna. When I read about Germanna in the newspaper and all the great things that are coming along I have to be grateful to you professionally and personally.”
In 2006, the Virginia State Senate passed a resolution agreed to by the House of Delegates commending Turnage for guiding Germanna, “from a small, remote community college to an influential educational force in the region by providing workforce development and the opportunity of higher education to all of the residents of the community.”
The same year, a Free Lance-Star editorial about his retirement said Turnage:
“looked at the employers in the community and saw how Germanna could help them train their workers. He gazed west, toward the businesses in the Route 29 corridor, and saw the need for technology education. He recognized the shortage of health-care workers and joined a statewide task force on nursing education to help community colleges alleviate it.”