Scottie Mayfield visits campus
Photo courtesy Harold House
Tech alumnus and dairy mogul Scottie Mayfield visited Woodruff Dining Hall last Wednesday for the official opening of the ice cream bar.
The dining halls at Tech are usually crowded around the lunch and dinner rush, as droves of hungry students pile into the halls for a satisfying meal. The diners at Woodruff on last Wednesday, Aug. 30, however, experienced a special "treat."
Not only did students receive free Mayfield ice cream, but they also were able to shake hands with the man behind the brand - Scottie Mayfield, himself.
Tech students buzzed with excitement and enthusiasm at the prospect of meeting Mayfield, and countless students brought posters for Mayfield to autograph. One enthusiastic freshman, Nathan Welch, even brought a one-quart jug of Mayfield milk for Mayfield to sign. Smiles and laughter filled the room as Scottie shook hands and posed for photographs.
Mayfield, the president of Mayfield Dairy Farms, paid his Alma mater a visit to celebrate the arrival of Mayfield's dipped ice creams in Woodruff Dining Hall. Apparently, a simple invitation from Todd Schram, the director of Operations of GT Dining, was all it took for Mayfield to stop by Tech to meet and greet the students.
Mayfield graduated from Georgia Tech in 1973 with a degree in Management. He originally came to Tech to play football, but the family business was always in him. "I started working on the farm when I was eleven years old," Mayfield said.
After graduation, he returned to Tennessee where he started working in the factory. He ascended the ranks and eventually assumed leadership of the company that he holds to this day.
The highly popular Mayfield company had humble beginnings. "My grandfather started the business in 1912 with just 45 cows," Mayfield said. "The milk was cooled in spring water and delivered to the locals." Now, 84 years later, Mayfield Dairy serves nine states and manufactures a wide array of premium-quality dairy products.
Innovation seems to be one of the cornerstones of Mayfield's success. "Our customers have changed a lot over the years," Mayfield noted. "They are very demanding, and they should be. We are always striving to make products that meet and exceed our customers' expectations."
A strong and well-managed workforce is another aspect of the Mayfield company to which he attributes his successes.
"As the management, our goal is to maintain quality standards," Mayfield said. "We have a lot of very dedicated people that really enjoy making and serving great products."
Angie Melhorn, Food Services Sales Manager of Mayfield Dairy Farms, can attest to the high quality products that Mayfield produces. "I believe we have the best milk and ice cream," Melhorn said. "In fact, that's what I missed most after moving away from home - Mayfield milk."
Mayfield's employees also expressed a great sense of loyalty to the company. "I've been with Mayfield for fifteen years," said Harold House, the Mayfield Dairy Farm's Tech sales representative. I enjoy working for Mayfield...Scottie is really a great person to his employees"
Although it may seem effortless to the constantly smiling Mayfield, running such a large business is no easy task. "There is so much competition for good employees these days," Mayfield said. "But it's an ongoing positive challenge to serve our customers."
As an alumnus, Mayfield shares a special connection with the Tech student body.
"The ability to analyze situations and find solutions was valuable to me in my career," Mayfield said, commenting on the value of his Tech education. "Academics at Tech are incredible. I hope that the students here realize what an awesome school they're attending."
Mayfield also offered a helpful piece of advice for current students.
"Have a sense of balance...don't do too much of anything," he said. "Take your education seriously, but have fun too."
The success of Mayfield Dairy Farms is certainly inspiring, for it is built on passion and a drive to produce nothing but the highest quality products.
Even though Mayfield is always on his toes to produce new flavors and products, he has clearly not forgotten where he started. "I am so plain. I love vanilla," Mayfield said.
Perhaps his taste might seem a bit old-fashioned, but that, of course, is Scottie Mayfield.
Aileen Li also contributed to this article.