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Orland Britnell, Bill Foster and Chris Meeks will be spotlighted at this year’s Russellville City Schools Education Foundation Banquet.

Education Foundation announces Banquet honorees

The Russellville City Schools Education Foundation Banquet is less than a week away, and members are gearing up for an exciting night that will include honoring three outstanding alumni.

Honorees are chosen based on their career accomplishments as well as their community involvement and their continued support of RCS. This year, the Foundation’s board of directors selected Orland Britnell, Bill Foster and Chris Meeks as the 2019 honorees.


Britnell is a 1952 graduate of RHS and a United States Army veteran. He has served in numerous roles in the county throughout the years, but the one he is probably best known for is his role with the Franklin County Cattlemen’s Association, of which he has been a part for the past 55 years.

Britnell has served as president of the Franklin County Cattlemen, regional vice-president, state vice president, state president-elect and as the 63rd state president of the 12,000 member organization. He has also been the chairman of the Franklin County chapter’s Scholarship Committee for the past 17 years. In this capacity, he has coordinated the popular steak sandwich sales, which have raised $176,000 – that translated into 352 scholarships – for RCS and Franklin County seniors.

Britnell has also helped coordinate the donation of fresh beef each November to the Family and Consumer Science classes at RCS and FCS to use in their food labs.


William “Bill” Foster is a 1949 graduate of Russellville City Schools and a United States Air Force veteran. He is a longtime supporter of the Russellville community, which is apparent in his involvement in numerous clubs and organizations.

One that stands out is his participation in the Russellville Jaycees. Under his leadership as president of this organization, the Jaycees made the decision to purchase 80 acres of land to build what would eventually become Twin Pines Golf Course.

The foresight to build such a place has proved beneficial to not just the community but to the schools as well. Even after the golf course transferred to private ownership, it has continued to be an integral part of the community, serving as the home turf for the Russellville High School Golf Team and a place where many school organizations have held functions and fundraisers throughout the years.

Foster has also been a longtime supporter of the schools while his children and grandchildren all attended and graduated from RCS. He is active in his business, Foster & Foster CPAs, which he has run for 60 years.


Chris Meeks is a 1983 graduate of RHS and serves as the executive director of the Alabama Organ Center and vice president of clinical funding for the UAB Health System.

The AOC moved into its current facilities at UAB in 2015 and later opened its own donor recovery center, making it one of only eight procurement centers in the country with its own in-house recovery center. Overseeing this organization is a tremendous accomplishment, as the AOC helps save so many lives through organ donation.

Meeks has also continued his support of the Russellville community and never fails to offer his assistance to those in need from the Russellville community who find themselves at any of the UAB Heath Services facilities.

To see this year’s honorees receive their recognition in person, tickets for the RCS Education Foundation Banquet at the A.W. Todd Centre April 8 are still available at the RCS Central Office on Waterloo Road or from any board member. Tickets are $50, and all proceeds go to the Foundation, which distributes student scholarships and teacher grants. The silent auction will begin at 5 p.m., and opening remarks and dinner will begin at 6 p.m.