Freed-Hardeman University will break ground for the Anderson Science Center, an $8 million facility designed to provide laboratory space for FHU’s biology and chemistry departments, and officially name the university’s sports center March 4, according to FHU President Joe Wiley.
Groundbreaking for the approximately 22,000 square foot building is scheduled to begin at 11:30 a.m. at the construction site located at the corner of Main Street and Hamlett Avenue. Fleming and Associates, Memphis, Tenn., designed the building and Alliance Corporation, Glasgow, Ky., is the construction management firm. Actual construction is slated to begin near the end of March. The completion is set for summer 2012.
Anderson Science Center will house labs for chemistry, biochemistry, biology, microbiology, and anatomy and physiology. In addition to the larger classroom labs, six smaller labs will be devoted to research. Faculty offices and a conference room are also a part of the facility.
James T. (Tom) Anderson is the naming donor for the science center. A 1973 graduate of Freed-Hardeman, he is the co-founder and president of Capella Healthcare, which owns 13 hospitals across the country. Prior to 2005 when he left to found Capella, Anderson was senior vice president for acquisitions and development for Province Healthcare.
Capella was named one of “Tennessee’s Top 25 Fastest-Growing Companies” last summer by Nashville Business Journal. It was the second consecutive year the Franklin-based company had made the list. It is also listed as one of Tennessee’s 100 largest private companies.
In addition to an A.A. from Freed-Hardeman, Anderson holds a B.S. in Accounting from Tennessee Technological State University, and an M.B.A. from Auburn at Montgomery. He has been named to the FHU Board of Trustees. He and his wife, the former Jade Hawkins, also a ’73 alumna of Freed-Hardeman, are the parents of four children. They live in Columbia, Tenn., where he is an elder for the West Seventh Street Church of Christ.
The sports center will be named in memory of Carmack R. Brewer at ceremonies beginning at 1:30 in front of the building. Brewer, a long-time educator in Wayne County, Tenn., attended Freed-Hardeman 1933-35. He was a forward on the school’s basketball team. Brewer began his career as an educator in a one-teacher school and concluded it as principal of Wayne County Middle School. He was an elder for the Waynesboro Church of Christ for 41 years. He and his wife Lorene are the parents of five children, four of whom attended Freed-Hardeman. In addition, six of his grandchildren and several great-grandchildren are or have been FHU students. Brewer is the uncle of Tom Anderson.
The sports center was built in 1996. The main arena seats approximately 2,700. The center also houses an auxiliary gym, racquetball courts, weight and training rooms, a walking track, and the sports hall of fame.
"Freed-Hardeman University is home to an outstanding group of young men and women pursuing degrees in the sciences,” Dr. LeAnn Davis, dean of the School of Sciences and Mathematics, said. “A facility of this caliber will not only elevate the quality of our current science programs, but will also allow us to develop essential science programs for the future," she said regarding the Anderson Science Center.
Wiley expressed his gratitude to Anderson saying, “We deeply appreciate Tom’s generosity and his commitment to the university. Freed-Hardeman depends upon the good will of its friends and alumni as we work to provide an excellent education in a Christian environment. This gift will benefit not only our current students, but also the students who will come our way in the future.”
The public is invited to attend the groundbreaking and the naming ceremony.