07 Aug 2020

Donor Story: A Life Remembered

Sarah Lauren V. Kattos and Andy Kattos

My husband, Andy, and I recently decided to make a financial contribution to HudsonAlpha to support its mission. In return, we were offered the opportunity to name a portion of the main building and chose to honor the memory of my grandmother, Sibyl Wilkinson. Andy and I have both professionally supported the organization, served on its boards, and attended its events, but we wanted to personally do something more. Anyone who knew Sibyl Wilkinson knows that she started so many important organizations in the area and served others faithfully, so the Board Room seemed an appropriate space to mark the life of this exceptional lady who considered HudsonAlpha one of the jewels in North Alabama’s crown.

At every opportunity, she would attend the Spring Benefit, Tie the Ribbons, ribbon cuttings, and any opportunity to celebrate the achievements this organization makes in the lives of people all over the world. Born in 1923, she would marvel at the technology and science that has developed since she was a girl, rejoicing in the fact that she was of “The Greatest Generation” who lived long enough to see the breathtaking work done to combat diseases like the breast cancer that claimed her mother and ALS that claimed her granddaughter’s mother-in-law, Wendy Lockwood. 

She worked tirelessly until the end of her life to support endeavors that were important. She was a lifelong learner and an exceptional matriarch for our large family. She believed in HudsonAlpha’s mission and considered its leaders her friends.  

With the onset of COVID-19 and all of the groundbreaking work that HudsonAlpha is continuing to do in the face of quarantine, we are even prouder to have supported this endeavor financially.  Thankfully, my grandmother made her exit before having to quarantine, which would have been a fate worse than death for her social, outgoing demeanor. We hope that this space within the HudsonAlpha facility will be utilized well by its leaders as they continue to use science, innovation, technology, and collaboration to improve lives and communities everywhere. 

Sarah Lauren V. Kattos, VanValkenburgh & Wilkinson Properties, Inc.