South Georgia Technical College to host African American History celebration

February 19, 2020
Col. Eric Bryant to speak at African American History celebration at South Georgia Technical College.
Col. Eric Bryant to speak at African American History celebration at South Georgia Technical College.

    Col. Eric Bryant, Chief Deputy for the Sumter County Sheriff’s Office, will be the keynote speaker at the South Georgia Technical College African American History celebration on Thursday, February 27th at 11 a.m. in the South Georgia Technical College John M. Pope Industrial Technology Center on the Americus campus.  The public is invited to attend the free event.

   South Georgia Technical College 2020 Instructor of the Year, Dorothea Lusane-McKenzie, will preside over the event and introduce the guest speaker.  SGTC Law Enforcement Academy Director Brett Murray will provide the invocation and SGTC President Dr. John Watford will give the welcome and introduce the guest speaker.

   The Sumter County Primary School Singers will perform a number of musical selections.  Mr. Leonard Tyson will serve as the pianist and Shannon Jones, former SGTC student will also perform.  SGTC 2020 GOAL Winner David Bush will give the benediction.

   Col. Eric Bryant is a native of Sumter County and is the son of Mack and Shirley Polk, Sr. and the grandson of Nathelma Bryant.  He is married to the former Suleania N. Bobb and is the father of one son, Eric Jr., and two daughters, Harrison and Haleigh.

    He is a graduate of Americus High School and served in the United States Marine Corps reserves for eight years.  He started his career as a detention officer with the Sumter County Sheriff’s Office and in 1995, Eric graduated from the Georgia Police Academy and began working as a deputy sheriff in Sumter County.

   In 1999, he worked as the Sumter County School System’s Transportation Director in addition to working as a Sheriff’s deputy on the weekend.  In October 2004, Sheriff Pete Smith, enlisted Bryant to serve as his Chief Deputy and he has done so for the past 16 years.

   Bryant also serves on the Board for New Horizons Habitat for Humanity, Zion Hope Outreach Ministry, and Life Transformation Ministry and was honorary city councilman in May of 2009.  He is a member of Lebanon Baptist Church in Plains and actively involved with the deacon and music ministry.

   He has also served as a speaker to DARE graduations, Chamber of Commerce Youth Achieves Program, Boys and Girls Club Teen Explosion, African American Institute Program at GSW, and countless other opportunities in the Sumter County School system.