Cover photo for Donald Charles Penny's Obituary
Donald Charles Penny Profile Photo

Donald Charles Penny

October 5, 1935 — June 10, 2022

Donald Charles Penny, 86, passed away at his home in Hahira on Friday, June 10, 2022 after a lengthy illness. He was born October 5, 1935, to Charles and Doris (nee Stearn) Penny, in Atlanta, Georgia.
After graduating from Henry Grady High School (1953), Don Penny attended Georgia Institute of Technology, studying Ceramics Engineering. He then enlisted in the US Army, serving three years with the 82nd Airborne Division from 1954-1957. Don returned from the army to Atlanta and continued his education at Georgia State College (now Georgia State University) obtaining Bachelor’s degrees in Art and Marketing. Moving south for his Master’s, he graduated from Florida State University with degrees in Art Education and Constructive Design.
Always the mentor, personally and professionally, Don took a teaching position immediately after that at Palm Beach Community College (now Palm Beach State College) and taught for three years on the beautiful Gold Coast of Florida.
Don then returned to his home state of Georgia. He taught Design, Drawing, and Ceramic Art at Valdosta State College/University from 1966 until 1991, and retired as Professor Emeritus of Art. While at VSU, Don, taught abroad in Europe and Africa, served as Craftsman Trustee of the American Crafts Council, two terms on the Turner Center for the Arts Board of Directors, and focused his adult career on excellence in art and education.
South Georgia’s first stoneware potter, Don Penny was a practicing ceramic sculptor in his Little River Studio at home until his second retirement in 2018. His work is in the collections of the Renwick Gallery of the Smithsonian American Art Museum (DC), High Museum of Art (GA) and Macon Museum of Arts and Sciences (GA). He has exhibited his ceramics at the Mint Museum of Craft +Design (NC), Museum of Arts and Crafts (GA) and Columbus Museum of Arts and Crafts (GA).
His intelligence made him a feisty conversationalist, his memory of music and lyrics was vast, and he never forgot a place he visited, nor the route he took to get there. Don’s wit and knowledge will be greatly missed by his large collection of family and friends.
Don is survived by his loving and devoted wife of 37 years, Carla (nee’ Mitchell); and his son, Adam Penny of Asheville. He will be dearly missed by his nieces and nephews, Gregory (Sandra) Dodge of Franklin, Edward (Rose) Penny of Gainesville, Phillip Dodge of St Augustine, Lisa (Grant) Schneider of Boca Raton, Warren Dodge of Monroe, Andrew (Elizabeth) Dodge of St Augustine, and Ellen (Bill) Penny-Trader of Conyers; Also Alison LeFew (Bill) of Cary,Helen Mitchell of Denver, and Charlotte (Matthew) Loreman of Houston, and numerous great nieces and great nephews and friends that were truly extended family. Preceding him in death were his parents; his sister, Susan Radford; and his brother, Norman Penny.
A Celebration of Life service will be held at 4 o'clock on Thursday, June 16, 2022 at the Turner Center for the Arts. Donations to the Dedo Maranville Gallery of Art At VSU will be joyfully accepted in lieu of flowers. Condolences may be conveyed online at Carson McLane Funeral Home

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Service Schedule

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Celebration of Life

Thursday, June 16, 2022

Starts at 4:00 pm (Eastern time)

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Annette Howell Turner Center For The Arts

527 North Patterson Street
Valdosta, GA 31601

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