Batey M. Gresham Jr.

 

April 5, 1934 – August 6, 2022

Batey M. Gresham, Jr. was born in Lebanon, Tenn. He graduated from Castle Heights Military Academy in 1952 and came to Auburn as part of Army ROTC, where earned a Bachelor of Architecture from the Auburn University School of Architecture and Applied Arts (now the College of Architecture, Design and Construction) in 1957.

While a student at Auburn, in addition to ROTC, Gresham was involved in SGA, Squires, Spades, Blue Key and Scarab and served as president of Kappa Sigma fraternity, the student body for the School of Architecture and as editor of the 1956 Glomerata.

Following graduation, Gresham entered the United States Army Corps of Engineers, where he served for eight years before being honorably discharged in 1965, with the rank of captain.

After his military service, Gresham and his wife, Ann ‘54, moved to Nashville, where he opened an architectural firm in 1966. A year later, he partnered with Fleming W. Smith Jr. to establish Gresham, Smith and Partners (now Gresham Smith). The firm was on the ground floor of the (then) new industry of multi-hospital systems and was the exclusive architect for Hospital Corporation of America for more than a decade. The firm now specializes in health care, aviation, transportation, corporate architecture and environmental services with multiple locations nationally and around the world.

Gresham was a member of the Auburn Alumni Board of Directors from 1981-1990, serving as president from 1987-89 and was president of the Greater Nashville Auburn Club for two years. He has served on the Auburn University Engineering Council, the Architecture Advisory Board, the Auburn University Foundation Board and the Museum of Art Advisory Board. Gresham was a member of the 1856 Society, the CADC Dean’s Club and a life member of the Auburn Alumni Association.

Batey and Ann Gresham have given back to Auburn in numerous ways. In 2001, they established the Gresham Professorship, the first endowed professorship in the College of Architecture, Design and Construction. They have also supported scholarships and programs in the Samuel Ginn College of Engineering, the Jule Collins Smith Museum, the School of Journalism, AU Singers, the Women’s Philanthropy Board, athletics and university construction projects.

Gresham, Smith and Partners designed the Jule Collins Smith Museum at Auburn, which opened in 2003, and Gresham served on the museum board. In 2006, he was a recipient of the Auburn Alumni Association Lifetime Achievement Award, the highest award given at Auburn University.

He is survived by his wife, Ann, of Auburn.

Former presidents of the Auburn Alumni Association Board of Directors (l-r): Ralph Jordan ’70, Nancy Fortner ’71, Bobby Poundstone ’95, Bill Stone ’85, Batey Gresham ’57 and Jack Fite ’85

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