Local philanthropist Kenny Sylvester has donated $1,500 to the University of South Alabama for the Kenny J. Sylvester Business Scholarship in honor of local businessman and philanthropist Abraham Mitchell. Sylvester, a longtime personal assistant to Mitchell and employee of Mitchell Brothers Inc., has also donated gifts to the Mitchell Cancer Institute.
The scholarship was awarded to Joel Ponce, a junior double-majoring in international business and entrepreneurship in the USA Mitchell College of Business.
A Mitchell Scholar, Ponce is also a USA Southerner and a participant in the University’s Honors Program. He will travel to Spain this summer to study international business through USA's Study Abroad program.
In addition to the scholarship donation, Sylvester donated the proceeds of a car he restored to the University of South Alabama Mitchell Cancer Institute.
The car, a 1991 Lexus LS 400, was previously owned by the Mitchell Brothers Inc. and used by the late USA philanthropist and trustee Mayer Mitchell. Sylvester bought it three years ago when it had 85,000 miles on it.
Sylvester and his grandson Brian spent 14 months restoring the car to pristine condition. During that process, Sylvester mentioned the project to Mayer Mitchell’s brother and USA philanthropist Abraham Mitchell. Sylvester realized he wanted to use the car project to support the Mitchell Cancer Institute, a longtime dream he shared with his friends and employers, the Mitchell brothers.