Alumnus of the Year - ANGUS R. COOPER, III  '91



Angus R. Cooper, III graduated from UMS-Wright in 1991 where he was a student-athlete as well as a member of the Mu Alpha Theta Honor Society. During his time at UMS-Wright, he was a member of the Varsity Football Team and the Varsity Soccer Team. He shared that one of his most memorable experiences at UMS-Wright was “Being an athlete and all the experiences and friendships developed by competing with them from PE in 3rd grade to Friday Night Lights.” After graduating from the University of Alabama in the School of Commerce and Business Administration with a B.S. in General Business in 1996, Angus joined Herfurth & Co. Shipping GmbH in Antwerp, Belgium. He also worked in the management training program for Regions Bank and later joined his family’s stevedoring company, Cooper/T. Smith, where he has served in various divisions. The company operates in thirty-seven ports in the United States, plus operations in Latin America. Cooper/T. Smith has diversified its business interests and now includes thirty-one subsidiaries and affiliated companies. He is currently the President for Cooper/T. Smith Corporation in Mobile, Alabama. He also serves as a member of the Corporate Executive Committee and as a Director on the Board for Cooper/T. Smith Corporation. Angus has been involved, contributed and devoted time to UMS-Wright for most of his life. The leadership, experience and expertise that he embodies led him to serve as Chairman of the Board from 2014-2017 and today, as a current Trustee. He was also the driving force behind the Advancing our Mission Capital Campaign that began in 2014. He has a long line of family who have attended UMS, JTW and UMS-Wright; including his grandfather, mother, father, aunt, and uncle in addition to four children of his own. He shared that one of the aspects of UMS-Wright that makes him most proud is that “UMSWright basically offers opportunities for every student to find something by which they can excel or feel good about themselves and because the school is staying true to our roots over all the years!” Not only are his academic and professional achievements impressive, but the time he gives back to the community and its residents is invaluable. He currently serves, or has served, on the Boards of Alabama Power Company, Business Council of Alabama Leadership (BCA); the Economic Development Partnership of Alabama (EDPA); the National Association of Waterfront Employees (Past Treasurer); Bryant Bank; and the Regions South Alabama Advisory Board. He is the Chairman of the Board of ProgressPac and a member of Chief Executive Organization, Inc. Angus has an extensive list of volunteer and leadership accomplishments throughout Alabama. His energy and insight have been devoted to the following civic and educational organizations among others: Alabama Wildfire Federation (Past President); International Order of St. Hubertus (Knight Grand Officer and Membership Chairman); Board of Directors of the Bryant-Jordan Student Athlete Program; Board of Directors of Delta Waterfowl; the Alabama Sports Hall of Fame; Mobile Arts Sports Association; Mobile Carnival Association Floral Parade Committee; President of the Senior Bowl; Alabama State Port Authority (Past Chairman); The University of Alabama Delta Kappa Epsilon House Corporation (Past Treasurer); Board of Directors for the Alabama Forever Wild Land Trust; Culverhouse College of Commerce International Advisory Board; Mobile Area Chamber of Commerce; The Salvation Army; and the Downtown Mobile Alliance & Main Street Mobile, Inc. Angus is an active member of Christ Episcopal Cathedral and is married to the former Gretchen H. Van Brackle of Richmond, Virginia. They have four children: Angus IV (UMS-Wright Class of 2019), Harris (Senior at UMSWright), Mary Lynn (8th Grader at UMS-Wright) and Darden (5th Grader at UMS-Wright). One of the many things that will always hold true throughout the years at UMS-Wright is the culture. When asked where UMS-Wright would be in ten years, Angus said “Technology will change the way we learn but the culture will be the same.”


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