News Release

For media information, contact:
Zaundra Brown
Director of Public Relations and Information
404.297.9522, ext. 1757


Captain Tommy Clack, a Vietnam Veteran, Serves as Keynote Speaker at GPTC’s Veterans Appreciation Celebration

DeKalb County - November 15, 2016

Captain Johnny T. (Tommy) Clack, a decorated veteran who has been recognized over 200 times by city, county, state and national organizations, as well as numerous civic and charitable organizations, was the featured keynote speaker at Georgia Piedmont Technical College’s Veterans Appreciation luncheon on November 9, 2016.      

Dr. Jabari Simama, president of Georgia Piedmont Technical College, was on hand to offer remarks about the occasion.  “Veterans and active military in the audience---we are grateful for your service and your dedication,” Dr. Simama stated.  “Today, we must remember all the men and women from the past, present and future who have gone, and will go, the course to ensure the freedoms we all enjoy,” he said.       

To show appreciation for those individuals who have served, and are currently serving, in the armed forces of the United States, Georgia Piedmont held a series of Veterans Appreciation events.  Festivities included a breakfast at the college’s Newton A and Newton D buildings in Covington on Tuesday, November 8, as well as receptions at the South DeKalb campus in Decatur and the Regional Transportation Training Center in Lithonia.  On Wednesday, November 9, the Veterans Appreciation luncheon was held at the college’s DeKalb Conference Center on the main campus in Clarkston. 

 “To all of the veterans present, I say we are better human beings for having served in the military,” said Captain Clack.  “I’m an eighth generation service member, so military service has always been important to me.  I have spent the last 45 years telling my story to groups such as this,” he said.  “All veterans and active military who are here should be commended, and I also thank the sixth branch of service---those who remain on the home front---for your unwavering support,” Clack said. 

A native Georgian, Clack is a life member of the American Legion, AMVETS, Disabled American Veterans, Military Order of the Purple Heart, and Veterans of Foreign Wars.  Currently, he serves as a consultant for the Department of Defense’s 50th anniversary observance of the Vietnam War. 

Georgia Piedmont’s Veteran and Military Support Center is the second such center to open within the Technical College System of Georgia’s 22 technical colleges.  Since the center’s opening in August 2013, it has served over 560 veterans.

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About Georgia Piedmont Technical College
Established in 1961, Georgia Piedmont Technical College (GPTC) is one of the top technical colleges in Georgia. As a student-centered institution, GPTC prepares individuals with the skills necessary to succeed in a rapidly changing, global economy. In August 2016, Georgia Piedmont was ranked among the top ten technical colleges in terms of enrollment by the Atlanta Business Chronicle. GPTC’s graduation rate is more than 74.3 percent, and its graduates secure employment at a level resulting in a 98.7 percent placement rate. With nearly 4,000 students, Georgia Piedmont’s adult education program is among the largest in the state. The college has 12 learning centers in DeKalb, Newton, Rockdale and Morgan counties. As set forth in its student catalog, Georgia Piedmont Technical College does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, creed, national or ethnic origin, sex, religion, disability, age, political affiliation or belief, genetic information, veteran status, or citizenship status (except in those special circumstances permitted or mandated by law). Contact Lisa Peters, the ADA Coordinator, at 404/297-9522, ext. 1154, or at the main DeKalb campus, 495 N. Indian Creek Drive, Clarkston, GA 30021 Room A-170; or Dr. Debra Gordon, the Title IX Coordinator, at 404/297-9522, ext. 1176, or at the main DeKalb campus, 495 N. Indian Creek Drive, Clarkston, GA 30021 Room A-103 for assistance. For more information about our graduation rates and other important program information, please visit our website at

A unit of the Technical College System of Georgia.