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MSU-Meridian names auditorium in honor of longtime supporters

By Staff
RECEPTION Elizabeth Carter Kahlmus, left, and M.F. "Buddy" Kahlmus are congratulated by Dr. Scott Elliott, right, Meridian Community College president, after the dedication ceremony Tuesday, naming Mississippi State University-Meridian's auditorium for the couple. Former Meridian Mayor Al Rosenbaum is in the background. Photo by Steve Gillespie/The Meridian Star
By Steve Gillespie/The Meridian Star
Dec. 5, 2001
For one Mississippi State University-Meridian Campus alumnus, Tuesday's ceremony to name the school's auditorium was a chance for him to shake hands with the people who helped him graduate.
The multi-purpose auditorium at MSU-Meridian is now called Kahlmus Auditorium, for M.F. "Buddy" Kahlmus and his wife, Elizabeth Carter Kahlmus, longtime Meridian residents and staunch supporters of the university.
Gene Coleman, who graduated in May, was a recipient of the M.F. Kahlmus Sr. Scholarship that is awarded to a deserving social work student. He thanked the Kahlmuses during Tuesday's reception.
Coleman, who works with people with substance abuse problems, is director of Weems Life Care. He used the $2,500 scholarship established by Kahlmus for tuition and supplies.
Official ceremony
Coleman joined MSU-Meridian officials, other graduates, family members and friends of the Kahlmuses at a reception and dedication ceremony for the Kahlmus Auditorium.
The Kahlmuses were presented with a framed portrait and document to commemorate the dedication. A name plaque also was unveiled that will be displayed in the auditorium.
He said the establishing MSU-Meridian "was certainly not the work of any one person. It shows what a community can do."
Malcolm Portera, outgoing president of MSU, made the dedication announcement.
Portera said it is especially appropriate to name the auditorium for the Kahlmuses, "because it is Meridian's room, a community room."
Lengthy accomplishments
David Moffett, a former dean of MSU-Meridian, and Dennis Mitchell, interim dean of the campus, also praised the Kahlmuses' dedication to the university. And U.S. Rep Chip Pickering and former U.S. Rep. G.V. "Sonny" Montgomery praised them in a video message.
Kahlmus and Montgomery served as co-chairmen of the fund-raising campaign to construct the campus. While president of Deposit Guaranty National Bank, Kahlmus established a number of bank-funded scholarships.
Kahlmus served as chairman of the MSU-Meridian Advisory Council from 1987-1993 and continues to serve as a member. He has also served on university search committees and his wife established a scholarship for deserving liberal arts students.
Coleman was glad to see the Kahlmuses honored.
Steve Gillespie is a staff writer for The Meridian Star. Call him at 693-1551, ext. 3233, or e-mail him at