Posted by Philip Poole on 2010-03-01

Samford University has received a $10,000 grant from the Georgia Baptist Convention to purchase Automated External Defibrillators for the campus.


Samford was one of 51 grant recipients from among 107 applicants chosen to receive financial assistance from the Georgia Baptist Convention’s foundation. Claude Rhea III, a senior advancement officer at Samford, accepted the check from GBC Executive Director J. Robert White in a recent ceremony at the GBC headquarters in suburban Atlanta. White is a 1968 Samford graduate.

“Our need for more defibrillators across campus worked well with their mission of having these defibrillators more widely available,” Rhea said. “The mission of the Georgia Baptist Convention is to build a hospital without walls, and considering more than 600 students from Georgia attend Samford, they were more than willing to reach out to us.”

Other organizations recently providing funds to Samford for defibrillators include Birmingham’s Princeton Heart Institute and Baptist Health Systems in Montgomery, Ala.

Rhea noted that the September 2009 death of Samford student Jim Griffin created awareness for the need of more defibrillators across campus. Griffin, 23, died unexpectedly in his room in Samford’s Beeson Woods residential village. He was a senior sociology major from Chicago, Ill., and a member of the men’s basketball team.

“I consider what we’re doing as a redemptive response to Jim’s passing,” Rhea said. “Our Birmingham, Montgomery and Georgia friends really came through for us.”

Additional reporting by Matt Roberts, student writer, Office of Communication.