Education Notes: Scholarship fund set up in memory of actor Biggers

From Staff Reports
education@newnan.com
A scholarship fund has been established at Berry College in memory of Dan Biggers, who appeared in several films that brought movie companies to Coweta County.
Daniel Upshaw “Dan” Biggers, 80, died Dec. 5, 2011 at his residence in the north Georgia town of Rome. The Newton County native graduated from Georgia Southern College with a bachelor of arts degree in English and speech.
He also earned a master's degree in counseling from the University of Georgia where he did doctoral work, as well.
Biggers taught English and psychology at Toccoa High School after serving in the military. Biggers moved to Rome in 1963 to become headmaster of Thornwood School.
Three years later he set up the counseling program at Berry College. He became Berry’s dean of students in 1971 and in 1976 became director of Oak Hill and the Martha Berry Museum.
He retired from that post in 1996.
In addition to his works at Berry, Biggers developed an acting career. He was presented a lifetime achievement award at the Rome International Film Festival. He played Dr. Bobb in the “In the Heat of the Night” series for eight years and appeared in more than 35 films, commercials and industrial films.

Biggers’ film credits included “Glory” in 1989, “Elizabethtown” in 2005 and “Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil” in 1997.

In 1997, he played Rev. Dickson in “A Christmas Memory,” a television film starring Patty Duke and based on Truman Capote’s memoir. Part of the film was shot in downtown Sharpsburg.

He also played Judge Tucker in “Silent Victim,” and Mr. Crump in “Stolen Babies,” television movies filmed partly in Coweta County in 1993. Biggers also had a role in the 1991 Judith Light film, “Wife, Mother, Murderer” which included scenes from Newnan.

Two other television films first shown that year – “Carolina Skeletons” and “White Lie” – also featured both Biggers and Coweta locales.

Biggers played Judge Byrnes in “I’ll Fly Away,” a television series that included several Newnan sites including homes in the College-Temple National Register district. He portrayed Judge Boykin in the 1982 television film, “Murder in Coweta County,” based on events that happened in Coweta County in 1948.

Biggers also was active in the Rome Little Theater. He received a lifetime achievement award from the Georgia Screen Actors Guild.

The Dan Biggers Endowment Scholarship Fund was established in his memory. Contributions may be sent to Dan Biggers Endowment Scholarship Fund, Attn. Major Gifts Berry College, P.O. Box 49069, Mt. Berry, GA 30149-0069.

• ‘I Have a Dream’ essay contest open for students in grades 3-12

To celebrate the 50th anniversary of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.’s “I Have a Dream” speech, Newnan Chapter 483 of Order of the Eastern Star is sponsoring an essay contest for students in grades 3-12.

Students are asked to share, in 300 words or fewer, what King’s “I Have a Dream” speech means to them. Essays judged most outstanding in each of three age categories – grades 3-5, grades 6-8 and grades 9-12 – will be read by their authors during the OES annual MLK memorial program.

Deadline for submissions is Dec. 10. For more information, contact Margaret Thompson at 770-253-1559 or Cynthia Ross at 678-423-0469.

• CEC to hold VEX Robotics competition Dec. 8

More than 26 leading middle and high school VEX Robotics students and mentors from around Atlanta, Valdosta, Waycross, Marietta, Carrollton and Calhoun will unite at the Central Educational Center on Saturday, Dec. 8 for the Third Annual CEC VEX Robotics Competition.

The tournament will feature more 26 teams. For more information, visit www.vexrobotics.com or www.robotevents.com .


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