South Carolina State graduate Robert D. (Bob) Ayers will be among the outstanding Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference (MEAC) alumni recognized during the league’s 2019 basketball tournament scheduled for March 11-16 at The Scope in Norfolk, Va.
Brown, and an alumnus from each of the MEAC’s 12 institutions, will be presented a Distinguished Alumni Award during an on-court ceremony at halftime of the Mar. 14 quarterfinal contest, which gets underway at 8 p.m. The recognition goes to MEAC alumni who have earned outstanding achievements and made notable contributions to their respective universities and communities.
A Chester, SC native who now resides in Hampton, Va., Ayers earned a bachelor’s in physical education from SC State in 1958. He also holds a master’s in guidance and counseling from Hampton. He is among a long list of distinguished graduates of the Bulldog ROTC Battalion earning a commission as a Second Lieutenant in the United States Army in July of 1958. He spent 21 years in the service in a variety of positions before retiring as a Lieutenant Colonel in 1978.
After his retirement, he embarked on a life of service to the Hampton Roads community and his alma mater, working with disadvantaged youths and their families in a number of capacities: Tenant Relations Advisor and Community Service Officer, Head Start Director, and Executive Director of the Office of Human Affairs, a community action agency. Ayers is the founder and director of RAMA Consulting Services and continues to volunteer with several agencies in the community that strive to improve the quality of life for low income residents.
He has served on the Carver Memorial Presbyterian Church Board of Trustees, the Tidewater Child Care Association, Downing Gross Cultural Arts Center, as well as the boards of Les Hommes Civic and Social Club, 100 Black Men of America, Eastern Virginia Health Systems, Virginia Peninsula, C. Waldo Scott Center of Hope, National Head Start, Newport News Alliance for Youth, Virginia Council Against Poverty, and Kappa Alpha Psi Fraternity, Inc.
In alumni-related activities, he is a Life Member of the SCSU National Alumni Chapter (SCSUNAA), a dedicated member of the Tidewater Peninsula Chapter of the SCSUNAA, and formerly served on the board of the Newport News Alumni Chapter. In addition, he has been awarded the SCSU Stellar Alumni Award and has provided financial support to the university for over 40 years.
Ayers is affiliated with numerous other community and civic organizations, including life memberships in both the NAACP and Kappa Alpha Psi Fraternity and was earlier named the latter’s Brother of the Year. He has received a number of other awards and recognitions, including Sigma Gamma Rho Sorority, Inc. Community Service Award, Newport News Human Rights Commission Citizen of the Year, the Urban League of Hampton Roads Martin Luther King Jr. Community Service Award, and had a Hampton Roads Head Start Center named in his honor.
Ayers is married to the former Tonia Bailey and they live in Hampton, Va.