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Alumnus credits alma mater for start in corporate world

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August 06, 2010

Pierre Clements, ’86, sums up his Georgia College & State University experience in two words: hard work.

Determined, Clements accepted the challenge, earned a bachelor of business administration degree and 20-plus years later, is vice president of national sales at the world’s largest beverage company, The Coca-Cola Co., based in Atlanta, Ga.

“The business program provided me with rigorous lecture and practical experience through case studies,” said Clements, a native of Atlanta. “The work my professors assigned prepared me very well for the business world.”

Today, Clements leads a cross-functional management team that is responsible for The Coca-Cola Co.’s sales, customer management, marketing and operations within its Foodservice and On-Premise Division.

“It’s a job that requires solid management skills,” he said. “In retrospect, it helped that I was a member of the university’s Mu Psi Chapter, Kappa Alpha Psi Fraternity Inc. and Delta Sigma Pi Business Fraternity. Each taught me brotherhood, leadership, achievement and community involvement, which, for me, translated into becoming more knowledgeable about society, politics and corporate America.”

Clements remains close to his GCSU fraternity brothers and is now a member of the National Corporate Strategic Alliance Board for Kappa.

He also serves on the Field of Dreams Foundation Board, Coca-Cola African-American Forum and GCSU Foundation Board of Trustees, and co-chairs the Sallie Ellis Davis restoration project at GCSU.

“The Sallie Ellis Davis House is a tremendous opportunity to preserve the legacy of a renowned educator and provide a major connection between Georgia College and the Milledgeville community,” Clements  said.

The project aims to restore the historic home of the influential educator who spent a lifetime teaching hundreds of local African-American children both academic and life lessons.

“My vision is to complete renovations within the next year or two,” said Clements.

From a career perspective, Clements plans to transition into another senior management role, assuming higher levels of responsibility within The Coca-Cola Co.

He credits his alma mater for the success of his career path.

“Georgia College has a strong track record of producing talented people who are making a difference in the world,” he said. “I’m honored to be a part of that group.”

ABOUT GEORGIA COLLEGE: Georgia College, the state’s designated Public Liberal Arts University, combines the educational experience expected at esteemed private liberal arts colleges with the affordability of public higher education. Its four colleges – arts and sciences, business, education and health sciences – provide 6,600 undergraduate and graduate students with an exceptional learning environment that extends beyond the classroom, with hands-on involvement with faculty research, community service, study abroad and myriad internships.

Founded in 1889, Georgia College boasts one of the most beautiful campuses in the nation with Corinthian columns fronting red brick buildings and wide open green spaces. Georgia College also offers graduate education at the historic Jefferson building in downtown Macon, at Robins Air Force Base and online.

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