Synovus Financial Corporation today announced a $1 million contribution to the United Negro College Fund for the establishment of The Synovus/Calvin Smyre Scholarship Fund. The fund will provide scholarships for African American students to attend historically Black colleges and universities (HBCUs) and other institutions of higher education in Synovus’ five-state footprint.
A Columbus native, Calvin Smyre represents Columbus-Muscogee County in the Georgia House of Representatives. He was elected in 1974 and, as a 46-year veteran, is the longest-serving member of the Georgia General Assembly. One scholarship will be reserved for a student at Fort Valley State University, Smyre’s alma mater. Smyre joined Synovus as a management trainee in 1976. He retired from the company in 2014 as executive vice president of corporate affairs.
Synovus Financial Corp. is a financial services company based in Columbus, Georgia, with approximately $54 billion in assets. Synovus provides commercial and retail banking, investment, and mortgage services through 294 branches in Georgia, Alabama, South Carolina, Florida, and Tennessee.
“Everyone who knows me understands my passion for financially assisting students seeking higher education,” Representative Smyre said. “I have committed my life to pursuing equality and improving the quality of life in Georgia throughout my career in the Georgia House of Representatives and my work on behalf of UNCF. I’m especially proud of my four decades-long association with UNCF to help further its mission of providing access to higher education for African Americans in my hometown of Columbus and across the country. And I am now honored to be the namesake of Synovus’ generous gift and clear commitment to increasing educational opportunities for African Americans across the Southeast.”