Tony Meyer ’49 might be gone, but he’ll never be forgotten, especially now that his name will be officially linked with the College of Charleston. On May 7, 2020, the Board of Trustees voted that the public space inside Towell Library will forever be known as The Anthony J. Meyer ’49 Alumni Welcome Center at Towell Library.
“On behalf of the Meyer family, we want to extend our heartfelt thanks and appreciation to the Board of Trustees and President Hsu for honoring our father’s memory in such a special way by naming the Alumni Center after him,” says one of his three sons, Joseph Meyer ’92. “He would be humbled by this honor and especially thankful that his name will forever be tied to the school he loved so dearly. Just as he welcomed many thousands through the gates of the College and became an integral part of their journey, the center will serve as a fitting memorial to continue that legacy of positively impacting the lives of future Cougars.”
Adds David Hay ’81, the chair of the Board: “Simply put, Tony is a legend at the College of Charleston. For many of us, he is as iconic as Randolph Hall. The members of the Board of Trustees – all proud alumni of the College – knew Tony well, and, on behalf of the Board, I am glad that we, as trustees, were able to play a small role in making sure Tony Meyer’s name and his memory will live forever at the institution he so loved. We will all miss Tony dearly, but through the naming of this welcome center, the College of Charleston will never forget him.”
A lifelong Charlestonian who grew up just a few blocks from campus, Meyer passed away on April 25, 2020, at age 91. He was associated with the College for about 70 of those years, first as a student and men’s basketball team member, and then as a faculty member, coach and chair of the Department of Health and Physical Education. He went on to serve as director of six other departments before becoming vice president of alumni relations and executive secretary of the Alumni Association. In 1984, he created the Student Alumni Associates, one of the College’s premier leadership organizations for undergraduate students. After retiring in 1994, he became executive secretary emeritus three years later and came to campus just about every weekday.
Barney Holt ’74, director of property management for the College, first met Meyer as a student and had an office right next to his inside the Blacklock House in recent years.
“It is the right thing to do for so many reasons,” he says. “Tony devoted his entire professional career to the advancement of the College, and I can’t think of one aspect of this institution he did not support or champion in one way or another. His leadership of, support for, and encouragement for the Alumni Association was a consuming and lifelong passion for him; it owned a huge part of his heart. To name the center for that organization, also located in the heart of the campus, after him is historic, poetic and moral justice.”
Karen Jones ’74 was as close to Meyer as anyone. As the director of alumni communications and current executive secretary of the Alumni Association, her office is inside Towell, and she couldn’t be more pleased by the name change.
“Nothing could be more appropriate,” she says. “This building was his library during his days as a student, and he was overjoyed when it became the Alumni Welcome Center. He felt it appropriate that it be at the center of campus. How fitting that the alumnus who welcomed countless numbers of alumni, students, parents and friends to the College should have a welcome center named for him.”