AUGUSTA, Ga. (WJBF) — With a teaching career that spanned over 40 years, Dr. William Bloodworth was known for his passion for education and teaching.

“I think his legacy will be more than anything else how he loved to teach,” former Augusta University Athletic Director Clint Bryant said.

Some faculty members said it was his love for people that set him apart as a leader.

“He was on a first name basis with everybody, he knew things about them. He kind of prided himself on the fact he knew where you came from and what was of interest to you, and he always made sure that you felt welcome,” said Associate Dean of Pamplin College of Arts Dr. Wesley Kisting.

Dr. Bloodworth led Augusta State University as president for 18 years, but even after his presidency he returned to the classroom to teach English and American Studies.

“Even as a leader and a part of the administration he would always try to sneak in and be able to teach something,” Chair of the English and World Languages department Dr. Seretha Williams said.

Former athletic director Clint Bryant remembers Dr. Bloodworth’s love for teaching and dedication to students.

“They saw a man who had been to the highest level of education at Augusta University and yet he didn’t mind going into that classroom every day and teaching English,” Bryant said.

He helped Augusta College transition to a state university and spearheaded $103 million in new construction and renovations on campus.

Yet, he still found the time to make personal connections with his staff.

“He remembered my children. He remembered their names. He asked me about them,” Williams said.

Dr. Kisting fondly remembers Dr. Bloodworth coming to his house to check on a boat project he was working on.

“The president walks right into my backyard to check out the boat and that’s just the kind of person he was. He would show up and make you feel very comfortable around him,” Kisting said.

It’s that personal connection and his love for education that will leave an impact for years to come.

“So, faculty, staff, students they truly loved him. I know its cliché to say that leaders were beloved, but Bill was. He had a tremendous positive impact on this campus that will shape the university for years to come,” Kisting said.

A Celebration of Life Event will be held on September 12th at 11:00 a.m. at the Maxwell Theatre on the Summerville campus, 2500 Walton Way, Augusta, GA 30904, with a reception for family and friends immediately following. The event is open to the public.

In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to support the William A. Bloodworth Jr. endowment. Donations can be mailed to the Augusta University Foundation, 1120 15th Street AD-1104, Augusta, Georgia 30912 or can be made on-line.