KSU names building after Chet Austin

The Chet and Hazel Austin Residential Community opened it’s doors in August 2012 to more than 1100 upper classmen on the Kennesaw State University campus.

Chet and Hazel Austin were celebrated Friday evening at the KSU Center with more than 200 of their friends and family in attendance. The list included David Connell, President & CEO of the Cobb Chamber of Commerce; Senator Johnny Isakson; Robin Burruss, President of Tip Top Poultry; Dr. Dan Papp, President of Kennesaw State University, and many more.

Chet and Hazel, lifelong Cobb Country residents and the parents of three children, have been married for 60 years. Chet’s career began in the military, having attended Georgia Military College and serving in the Navy from 1945 to 1947. In 1954, Chet and Hazel joined their lifelong friend Al Burruss at Tip Top Poultry, a small business venture that would later become one of the leading companies in the poultry industry. When Burruss passed away in 1986, Chet took over leadership at Tip Top Poultry until his retirement in 1999.

Chet’s multi-dimensional career spans decades and includes widespread community involvement, much of which has been with Kennesaw State University. He has been a trustee for the past eight years and remains on the advisory boards for KSU’s College of Continuing Education (CCPE) and the Osher Lifelong Learning Institute (OLLI). Chet has received extensive recognition for his involvement with Kennesaw State, including the Edwin Zaban Prize for Entrepreneurial Spirit and the Chairman’s Award; in addition, the CCPE named its youth academy in his honor. The Austins established an endowment fund that provides support to CCPE and OLLI, as well as endowed scholarships for members of the Leaders In Kennesaw (LINK) program.

Chet has also supported scholarship programs that benefits Coles College of Business, the College of the Arts, and KSU athletics. He and Hazel continue to be closely involved with the University and actively contribute to a number of campus programs. As a way to honor Chet and Hazel and their commitment to Kennesaw State, the Chet and Hazel Austin Residential Community was officially named on October 11, 2013.