Category Archives: UAB

The transformation of downtown Birmingham

Michael Calvert
Michael Calvert

Today’s guest columnist is Michael Calvert.

Predictions are always risky—especially about the future—but here are my predictions for downtown and the larger City Center.

In 1982, when I became CEO of Operation New Birmingham, REV’s predecessor, many people asked if I would bring back department stores and other retailers. I said downtown had evolved beyond its past as a retail center. Continue reading The transformation of downtown Birmingham

UAB Health System’s new CEO’s vision for Birmingham and Alabama

Dr. Selwyn Vickers
Dr. Selwyn Vickers

Today’s guest columnist is Dr. Selwyn Vickers.

Growing up in Alabama has always been a significant point of pride for me.

Throughout my training years at Johns Hopkins Medicine and my seven years as chair of the Department of Surgery at the University of Minnesota, I knew I would find my way back here. Continue reading UAB Health System’s new CEO’s vision for Birmingham and Alabama

UAB President Watts had a rough 2014—what’s happened since?

Dr. Ray Watts
Dr. Ray Watts

On December 4, 2014, I did something I had never done before and have never had to do again.

On that day, as publisher of ComebackTown, I published a column which I naively titled, “UAB lucky to have Ray Watts as President.”

Two days earlier Dr. Watts had announced the cancellation of UAB Blazer football.

The response was immediate, ugly, and personal. Continue reading UAB President Watts had a rough 2014—what’s happened since?

My life doesn’t revolve around Alabama and Auburn football

Adam Stermer

Today’s guest columnist is Adam Stermer.

I moved to Alabama in High School.

I was immediately struck by the natural beauty of the state, and having spent most of my short lifetime relocating often, I was excited and nervous to begin learning about my new home.

Meeting people and making new friends was a reality I was familiar with, but it’s never easy. While there were expected differences from places I’d lived in the past, one experience stands out. Continue reading My life doesn’t revolve around Alabama and Auburn football

Huntsville is never going to be Alabama’s largest city

Tom Cosby
Tom Cosby

Today’s guest columnist is Tom Cosby.

There is a steady drumbeat in the clickbait news of how Huntsville is poised to overtake Birmingham as the state’s largest city.

While shocking in a man-bites-dog context, it is only true in the narrowest of contexts, that of comparing populations within a single municipality’s border. Continue reading Huntsville is never going to be Alabama’s largest city

Do good or make money? Now Alabama entrepreneurs can do both

Patrick J. Murphy
Patrick J. Murphy
Jonathan Murphy
Jonathan Murphy

Today’s guest columnists are Patrick J. Murphy and Jonathan Murphy.

In January 2021, a law went into effect in Alabama that allows the formation of a new kind of business entity called a “benefit corporation.” Continue reading Do good or make money? Now Alabama entrepreneurs can do both

Beacon of hope shines brighter than ever on Birmingham

Sanjay Singh

Today’s guest columnist is Sanjay Singh.

Dora and I moved to Birmingham in 1993. I was a newly minted Ph.D. from University of Georgia, where I met Dr. Khris McAllister, former Chair of the Management Department of Collat School of Business. He invited me for an interview in the fall of 1992. Continue reading Beacon of hope shines brighter than ever on Birmingham

Did it take a pandemic to ignite Birmingham’s economy?

Another gorgeous autumn day in Vestavia Hillls
Another gorgeous autumn day in Vestavia Hills

The pandemic hit and unexpectedly a few of my friends’ children moved back  home to Birmingham—some temporarily and some permanently.

Cities like New York were in lockdown leaving many unfortunate souls imprisoned in their apartments or condominiums. Continue reading Did it take a pandemic to ignite Birmingham’s economy?