Looking Back: Former Governor Lamar Alexander Shares His Thoughts on Student Involvement in Politics in 1979

LOOKING BACK 1979-80 -- Former Governor Lamar Alexander explains his new Tennessee Tomorrow Program and is presented a Central jacket by Roger Bush and Sherri Bradford.

Preservation of Chattanooga Central History

LOOKING BACK 1979-80 — Former Governor Lamar Alexander explains his new Tennessee Tomorrow Program and is presented a Central jacket by Roger Bush and Sherri Bradford.

Kendra Jones, Staff Writer

Governor Alexander Believes Teens Respect Politics

September 1979

With 2020 being a presidential election year, many Central students have taken an interest in politics. For many upperclassmen, this is the first year they are eligible to vote. Students during the 1979-80 school year were also showing interest in politics and government. When Former Tennessee Governor Lamar Alexander visited Chattanooga, he gave a speech to the Central student body. In his speech, he explained that he believed that the youth at the time had “respect for the political system and great hope for the future.” In addition to the speech, Lamar Alexander presented a new program called Tennessee Tomorrow that aimed to involve students in local and state government.

Young Life Meetings Stress Fun within a Christian Atmosphere

November 1979

In November of 1979, an organization called Young Life made an emphasis on their purpose and goal. According to the organization’s local directors, Len Teague and Penny Freeman, Young Life’s purpose was to “help young people have fun and to get them to listen and learn about the difference Jesus Christ can make in their life.” At the time, over 100 students from both Central High School and Tyner High School joined together on Monday nights to sing, dance, have devotions, and partake in several other activities. The goal of these activities was to bring students together to find answers for the problems they were facing. Young Life is still a program that occurs at Central and other schools in the Chattanooga area.

Sterretts Adopt a Refugee Family

December 1979

In 1979, twelve thousand citizens from Pailin, Cambodia fled to the Thai border after receiving notice about an upcoming attack by Vietnamese soldiers. Shortly after they crossed the border, they were herded into refugee camps. Among these families was the Cheak family. The Cheak family was brought into the United States under the World Relief Organization (WRRO). The WRRO purchases plane tickets and finds suitable temporary homes for refugee families. Advancing the Ministries of the Gospel (AMG) also aids refugee families, such as the Cheaks. An AMG representative found out about a trailer in the backyard of the Sterrett family house. The representative called and asked the Sterretts if they would sponsor a family, and the Sterretts were more than happy to.

Mrs. Robbs Accepted as Contestant for Mrs. Tennessee Beauty Pageant

January 1980

Sophomore English teacher Cathy Robbs was accepted to be a contestant for the Mrs. Tennessee Pageant in January of 1980. Robbs had experience in judging pageants, but she had yet to be a contestant. After she read an article in the newspaper, she wrote the two required essays and applied for the pageant. Robbs had no formal training for the pageant, but she was confident that her prior experience in plays and on television would be sufficient preparation.