Don Roberts, headmaster of Auburn's Lee-Scott Academy, is an Auburn University alumnus who began a blog, Dining with Don, to share his favorite eateries. Thanks to social media, he has a number of followers and has become an avid “foodie.” Sit down with the local figure to share how his past at Auburn shaped him into whom he is today.
The Hazlehurst, Georgia, native enrolled as a freshman in 1968 with a plan to become a mechanical engineer, narrowly avoiding attending Georgia Tech. At the last second, he switched to Auburn because he knew they had a School of Education and pursued his secret desire to become a coach and teacher.
“I actually knew very little about Auburn,” Roberts explains, “since I lived in south Georgia, but I had been impressed by their recruiting literature. I enrolled without having ever seen the campus.”
Roberts received his undergraduate degree in health and physical education in 1973, with a plethora of memories under his belt. When asked what some of his favorites were, he had a tough time choosing so he explained them all.
“I remember seeing the first pass Pat Sullivan threw to Terry Beasley. It was incomplete but it received a standing ovation from the crowd. I remember the Hippies, streaking, ROTC, the opening of Haley Center, where most of my classes were held and the opening of the
Coliseum, where the rest of my classes were held.”
(Photo courtesy of Don Roberts.)
“I had many outstanding teachers there that had a tremendous impact on my career. I can never repay them other than by trying to pass on their influence to others. It has been a thrill to see Auburn grow and become such an outstanding university, although I do miss some of the closeness we had back in the old days.”
The teacher, coach and administrator for several school systems in Alabama and Georgia,ended up at Lee-Scott Academy upon receiving a call in 1999 asking if he would be interested in the Head of School Position and hasn’t looked back.
“I am now completing my 15th year here. It has been very rewarding to watch LSA continue to grow and prosper. We have been blessed to have such awesome students and teachers to work with.”
While attending Auburn, Roberts met and fell in love with “an Opelika girl named Lorna,” whom he married the summer after his graduation. They both enjoy unique travel experiences both domestic and international as well as good restaurants, which spurred his latest hobby, Dining With Don.
“It started as a simple inspiration I had one evening while eating at a local restaurant. I had just recently joined Facebook and was still playing with it. I just nonchalantly posted where and what I was eating. Almost immediately, several people responded to my post and it grew from there.”
His favorite local restaurants consist of Cafe
123, Acre, Amsterdam Cafe and Warehouse
Bistro. His top six restaurants in the country frequently change but his current six include: Gary Danko in San Francisco; California; Cafe 123 in Opelika, Alabama; 82 Queen in Charleston, S.C.; Marina Cafe in Destin, Florida; The Olde Pink House in Savannah, Georgia and Emeril’s in New Orleans, Louisiana.
This Auburn icon may not teach forever but his love for his town and everything in it, including the food, will last a lifetime.
Roberts dining with family at one of his favorite restaurants, Acre.
(Photo courtesy of Don Roberts.)
Join the Auburn Family! Enroll at Auburn.