Charles Richard Winters, Sr. Endowment established at Northwest

Dr. John V. Winters and Charles Richard Winters, Sr.

The Charles Richard Winters, Sr. Endowment has been established by Dr. John and Mrs. Amanda Winters of Ames, Iowa, in loving memory of John’s father, Charles Richard Winters, Sr., to celebrate his entrepreneurial spirit and passion for learning. Winters died in February 2012.

Winters impressed upon his family the values of education, a strong work ethic and a positive attitude, all of which created a legacy of entrepreneurship to be passed down for generations.

Born on October 9, 1958 in Memphis, Winters was a 1976 graduate of Central High School. He managed convenience stores for all of his adult life. At the appropriate time, he used his many years of experience to follow his dream of opening his own convenience store, which he did in partnership with his two young adult sons, Charles Richard Winters, Jr. and John Virgil Winters.

For many years, Winters was also an independent, contracted auditor for other convenience stores, a job he handled while managing his own store.

He met many people over the years throughout his career. This was what he loved the most about the job. He was great at connecting with people, remembering their names and stories, and loved nothing more than good conversation with his customers, employees and coworkers, all of whom he considered friends

Winters was a proud family man, community member, and business owner who strongly emphasized the importance of education to his children.

Winters was married for 30 years to the former Cathy Ann Newsom of Horn Lake. Winters and Cathy raised three children in Horn Lake: Charles Richard Winters, Jr. of Middleton, Tennessee; John Virgil Winters of Ames, Iowa and Jessica Faye Winters of Horn Lake.

They have seven grandchildren now, and, though Winters was only able to meet two of them before his passing, he was an incredibly happy and involved grandparent and would undoubtedly be proud of and overjoyed with all seven of his grandchildren: Landon Eric Crawford, Abigale Faith Holley, Jeremy Wayne Holley, Emma Faye Logan, Abraham Wyatt Winters, Amelia Marie Winters and Joy Ann Dell Winters.

Winters always told his children to work hard. From the time they were very young, they accompanied their dad to work early in the morning before the start of their school day. He showed them the ins and outs of the business during those times, sparking an interest in business ownership and impressing upon them a strong work ethic. He also told his children to take their education seriously, and he especially hoped for, encouraged, and supported their becoming first-generation college graduates.

Once his children began attending college, he decided to further his own education by attending evening classes at Northwest while operating his many business ventures. Winters enjoyed the challenge of college courses and maintained a remarkable grade point average during his college studies.

Winters loved his family first and foremost, but also loved humor, trivia, couch naps, fried chicken and sports of all kinds.

Winters was passionate about youth sports, coaching a generation of community youth in baseball and basketball for approximately 20 years, volunteering his time through Horn Lake Parks and Recreation and other Memphis/north Mississippi area leagues. He also served for many years as a referee for various youth sports. The bed of his pickup truck was always loaded with cases of sports drinks, buckets of sunflower seeds, and drawstring bags of basketballs or bags of bats and batting helmets, depending on the season.

Dr. Michael Heindl, president of Northwest, is appreciative to Dr. and Mrs. John Winters for continuing the tremendous legacy of John’s father. “There is no way to adequately measure the impact that Charles Richard Winters, Sr., made on his family, his business associates, his customers, and the young people that he coached in youth sports.  Northwest is honored to have a scholarship that bears this distinctive name and to tell his story to students at Northwest for generations to come,” Heindl said.

This scholarship will be awarded to non-traditional students pursuing careers in the fields of business and/or social sciences and who have demonstrated a financial need.

For more information, contact the Northwest Office of Institutional Advancement at 662.560.1103 or email Patti Gordon, executive director at

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