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UGA to pay homage to Masseys

Family will be honored at Friday luncheon

POSTED: April 7, 2014 7:16 p.m.

Gainesville poultry icon Abit Massey and his family are being honored Friday as the University of Georgia’s 2014 Alumni Family of the Year.

“We’re grateful and highly honored,” said Massey, longtime president of the Georgia Poultry Federation. 

The 1949 UGA graduate described a long and prized relationship with the university.

“My parents moved to Athens years ago for the sole purpose of making it possible for the six of us to get a college education,” he said, referring to his siblings. “I enjoyed being at UGA very much and was pleased and proud when my son Lewis went later.”

Massey is best known for his role with the Poultry Federation. He became president emeritus of the organization in 2008 after serving as executive director for 48 years. He was presented with the U.S. Poultry & Egg Association’s Harold E. Ford Lifetime Achievement Award in 2012.

The Massey family’s influence didn’t stay confined to one realm.

“They’re from a wide variety of realms and I’m proud of all of them,” Massey said of his children and grandchildren.

He and his wife, Kayanne, a former Miss Georgia, have two children, Lewis Massey and Camille Massey. Camille is a human rights lawyer in New York City and has one child, Lucia.

Lewis Massey, from the 1984 class, is a former Georgia secretary of state. He and his wife, Amy, have three children: Chandler, an Emmy-award-winning actor; Cameryn, a third-year UGA student studying international affairs and member of the UGA Student Alumni Council; and Christian.

In total, the Masseys have more than 18 relatives who are currently attending or have attended UGA.

The association presents awards to distinguished graduates and faculty members during its annual Alumni Awards Luncheon, to be held at the Classic Center in downtown Athens. The event is in its eighth decade.

“It’s a luncheon I look forward to every year,” Massey said. “Obviously, it will be very special this year.”

Massey also served as Georgia Jaycees president in 1956-1957. He was one of the keynote speakers at the 2014 Georgia Jaycees State Convention in January.

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