VALDOSTA -- The Georgia Power Foundation Inc. recently honored David Ratcliffe, the new chairman and chief executive officer of the Southern Company, with a $25,000 gift to his alma mater, Valdosta State University.

The gift to VSU's College of Education will endow an undergraduate scholarship in Ratcliffe's name and assist VSU in its efforts to train future Georgia teachers.

Ratcliffe, who took on his new title as chairman and chief executive officer of the Southern Company on July 1, most recently served as president of the Southern Company and chief executive officer of Georgia Power. A 1970 graduate of VSU and a biology major, Ratcliffe joined Georgia Power in 1971 and coordinated environmental monitoring and compliance programs in and around power plants.

In 1986, Ratcliffe held the title of vice president of fuel services at Southern Company Services and was responsible for fuel management for the operating subsidiaries of Southern Company. He served as executive vice president of Southern Company Services from 1989 to 1991 with responsibility for fuel services, operating and planning services, and research and environmental affairs.

Ratcliffe held positions of president and chief executive officer of Mississippi Power from 1991 to 1995 and served as senior vice president of external affairs for the Southern Company from 1995 to 1998. He was appointed executive vice president, treasurer, and chief financial officer of Georgia Power in 1998, before being named president and chief executive officer of Georgia Power in 1999.

On May 13, Ratcliffe became the recipient of the VSU Alumni Association's 2004 Distinguished Alumnus Award during a reception in Atlanta.

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