Apple CEO Tim Cook inducted into Alabama Academy of Honor

Apple CEO Tim Cook inducted into Alabama Academy of Honor
Published: Oct. 24, 2014 at 4:07 PM EDT|Updated: Oct. 28, 2014 at 3:17 PM EDT
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MONTGOMERY, AL (WTVM) - Apple CEO Tim Cook probably took his iHankerchief when he returned to his home state on Monday.

The Alabama Academy of Honor welcomed eight new members in a public ceremony at 11 a.m. Oct. 27, in the old House Chambers of the State Capitol in Montgomery.

Cook, the current Apple CEO, Auburn University alumnus and a native of Robertsdale, was among the inductees and made remarks on behalf of the incoming class.

Following a 12-year career with IBM, Cook joined Apple in 1998 as senior vice president for worldwide operations, became chief operating officer in 2005 and succeeded founder Steve Jobs as CEO in 2011. Cook is considered one of the most recognized and respected names in business and technology.

Gov. Robert Bentley and Chairman of the Academy Catherine Randall made welcoming remarks. Jim Stephens addressed the audience on behalf of current Academy members.

With membership limited to 100 distinguished citizens of the state, the Academy bestows honor and recognition upon living Alabamians for their outstanding accomplishments and services. It was created by the State Legislature Oct. 29, 1965.

This year's inductees comprise a blue-ribbon group of leaders in both the public and private sectors.

"My time as a kid and a young adult in Alabama taught me the importance of family, of friends, of community, of education, and of hard work," Cook said.

Other honorees included University of Alabama President Judy Bonner; Big Oak Ranch founder John Croyle; HudsonAlpha co-founder Jim Hudson; civic leader Margaret Porter; Crimson Tide head football coach Nick Saban; U.S. Sen. Jeff Sessions; and business executive Edgar Welden.

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