Adam entered ROTC at Carolina before earning a political science degree. He and Karen took a few of the same classes but didn’t know each other at the time. They were married Aug. 27, 2005. Adam now works for Superior Essex.
Passion for Carolina
Ackermann, a Spartanburg native, was raised with a passion for the University of South Carolina instilled by her mother, Ruth Cate, who earned degrees in education and law. As a child, Ackermann wore garnet and black for Carolina-Clemson day “before I knew what it meant.” A talented dancer, she attended Spartanburg Day School before graduating from the Virginia School of the Arts in Lynchburg. Many of her classmates became professional dancers.
An Honors College student and member of Chi Omega sorority, Ackermann became captain of the Cockettes, the Carolina Dance Team. The team was in its inception while she was a student, so the chance to compete in national competitions was one of the highlights of her Carolina experience. So was the chance to perform under the direction of dance professor Susan Anderson. Ackermann performed a modern dance solo at the Koger Center during the University’s Bicentennial Dance Gala, “South Carolina Loves Dance.”
Inspired by her anthropology professors, Ackermann joined the Peace Corps following graduation to teach English in Bangladesh. Her first month there, she was given the chance to dine with U.S. Ambassador to Bangladesh Harry K. Thomas, whose sister was a friend of Janice Love, then a professor of theology at Carolina. Though Bangladesh is known for its hot, humid climate, Ackermann wore the national dress of Bangladesh every day, called the salwar kameez. She taught English to students of all ages in Chittagong, formed a Ladies’ English Club, taught dance classes, and was the first female member of the Rotary Club of Agrabad.