Kay Yow did more than just win games in her time at NC State. She advanced the position of women in athletics. And she established a legacy of diligently fighting breast cancer.
“NC State was Coach Yow’s home for 34 years. It was a 22-year battle with breast cancer,” says Megan Smith, director of marketing and development for the Kay Yow Cancer Fund. “She did it in a public arena.”
- This week, NC State celebrates that fight and her legacy by holding events that will lead in to the annual Hoops 4 Hope game against Wake Forest on Sunday, Feb. 12.
On Wednesday, a Rex Mobile Mammography unit featuring Yow’s picture will be on campus for health care professionals to administer breast exams. The idea is convenience, and the unit’s mission is to extend quality mammograms to areas where women have difficulty getting health care. The unit will be back on campus Feb. 8.
This Wednesday also kicks off Miles 4 Kay, an event aimed at raising awareness and funds for women’s cancer research. Participants will hop on pink treadmills and work to meet a goal of 5,000 miles. Cybex, a company that makes treadmills, will donate 10 cents per mile in February to Kay Yow Cancer Fund.
There will be other events on Hillsborough Street leading up to the Feb. 12 women’s basketball game.
“People in the community still hold that personal connection to Coach Yow,” Smith says. “It shows you just how much the name Kay Yow resonates with everyone here.”
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The Alumni Association recognized some of NC State’s greatest stars this weekend, honoring 18 alumni and friends of the university for their professional and personal accomplishments and their continuing support of NC State, the Alumni Association and the Wolfpack Club.
“Their light, ignited by their NC State education and fueled by their own successes, reflects upon their alma mater, enhancing NC State’s reputation around the world,” Chancellor Randy Woodson said during the “Evening of Stars” at Prestonwood Country Club in Cary. “They unequivocally add value to an NC State degree.
“These are alumni who have made impacts around the globe; through television broadcasts and comprehensive websites, on Main Street and Wall Street; through rhyme and reason; in factories, laboratories, classrooms and boardrooms.”
The honorees at the 8th Annual NC State Evening of Stars were:
COLLEGE DISTINGUISHED AWARD RECIPIENTS
S. Elizabeth George ’81 MS, College of Agriculture and Life Sciences: As director of the Cooperative Threat Reduction Directorate for the U.S. Department of Defense, George is recognized as one of the nation’s leading authorities on chemical and biological warfare.
H. Connor Kennett Jr. ’54, College of Agriculture and Life Sciences: Kennett was the longtime director of the poultry division of the U.S. Department of Agriculture before he retired in 1988. He was the first North Carolinian inducted into the National Poultry Hall of Fame.
David W. Evans ’84, College of Design: Evans is an award-winning creative director, photographer and filmmaker who has worked for clients such as the National Geographic Society, Discovery Channel, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and the United Nations Foundation.
Carl E. Harris ’98 EDD, College of Education: A former superintendent of Durham (N.C.) Public Schools, Harris was named in 2010 as deputy assistant secretary of the U.S. Department of Education. He also served as superintendent of the Franklin County (N.C.) Public School System.
Marshall D. Brain ’89 MS, College of Engineering: Brain founded HowStuffWorks.com, an award-winning website that offers easy-to-understand explanations of how the world around us functions. Discovery Communications purchased the site for $250 million in 2007.
William H. “Bill” Dean ’88, College of Engineering: Dean is president and CEO of M.C. Dean Inc., a company founded in 1949 by his grandfather. The company is the nation’s premier electrical design-build and systems integration firm, with 3,300 employees and clients that include Fortune I000 corporations, universities, high-tech companies and government agencies.
Robert R. Womack ’59, College of Engineering: After working as a partner at McKinsey & Company, a global management consulting firm, Womack went on to serve as chairman, chief executive officer or president of four New York Stock Exchange companies.
Nora H. Shepard ’05 MFA, College of Humanities and Social Sciences: Shepard is an award-winning poet who teaches creative writing and poetry at NC State. A longtime advocate of the arts, Shepard was the founding president of Arts Together, Raleigh’s only nonprofit multi-arts school.
Jon W. Bartley ’69, Poole College of Management: Bartley is a professor of accounting at NC State who served as associate dean of the college from the time it was founded in 1993 until 1998, when he became dean. He served as dean until 2004, when he returned to the faculty.
Ed Leigh McMillan II ’62, College of Natural Resources: McMillan is the managing trustee of the D.W. McMillan Trust and the D.W. McMillan Foundation, managing 40,000 acres of timber in Alabama and Florida, as well as the mineral rights and drilling sites for newly discovered oil reserves associated with the property.
David B. Montgomery, ’68, ’81 PhD, College of Physical and Mathematical Sciences: Montgomery worked for 30 years as a plasma physicist at Becton, Dickinson and Company (now known as BD), developing new technology that resulted in 15 U.S. and five European patents.
F. Dale Hayes ’78, College of Textiles: Hayes is vice president of global public relations for UPS, and was responsible for developing the company’s award-winning, memorable slogan about what “brown can do for you,” and redesigned its iconic brand mark to give UPS one of the most recognizable brands in the world.
Dr. David E. Anderson ’88 BS, ’90 DVM, College of Veterinary Medicine: Anderson is a professor at the College of Veterinary Medicine at Kansas State University, where he is head of agriculture practices in the Department of Clinical Sciences. He is the founding director of the International Camelid Institute at The Ohio State University and the International Academy of Farm Animal Surgeons.
WOLFPACK CLUB AWARD
E.J. Poindexter ’58, Ronnie Shavlick Award: Poindexter worked for more than 40 years for Barnhill Contracting Co., where he eventually became the company’s first vice president. Poindexter has been devoted to NC State athletics for more than 55 years, never taking a vacation that didn’t revolve around an NC State sporting event.
ALUMNI ASSOCIATION AWARDS
Dennis G. Howard ’67, Meritorious Service Award: Howard served for 14 years on the Alumni Association Board of Directors, serving on every board committee and providing leadership as the board’s president during a critical year of transition for the Alumni Association and its Caldwell Fellows program.
David S. Jolley ’70 and Celia G. Jolley ’83 MS, Meritorious Service Award: David, vice president of commercial lending at C&F Bank in Williamsburg, Va., was a founding member of the NC State Board of Visitors and has served on the NC State University Foundation and its endowment board. David and Celia, a retired educator, are members of the C.W. Dabney Lifetime Giving Society and the R.S. Pullen Society.
Ada B. Dalla Pozza, Award of Merit: As a NC State extension agent, faculty member, mentor and volunteer for more than 70 years, Ms. Ada (as she is known) provided leadership to improve the quality of life for families and helped create leadership institutes for rural women, many of whom became elected officials.
Daniel C. Gunter III ’00, Outstanding Young Alumnus: Gunter, an associate attorney with DLA Piper, serves on the Alumni Association’s Young Alumni Council and is a member of the association’s board of directors as a representative of the Council on Athletics.
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NC State Professor Ted Simons
What’s become nature’s ultimate reality show — a live broadcast of nesting bald eagles — to fans around the world all started when NC State ornithologist Ted Simons took his ZOO 501 students on a field trip to Jordan Lake.
Watching an active nest, the students were surprised that bald eagles were nesting so close to Raleigh. “As we were walking back, we started talking about it, and realized most people would be surprised,” says Simons, a professor of biology. He remembers thinking: “Maybe we should put a camera on that nest.”
Today the website — www.basic.ncsu.edu/eaglecam — has hundreds of followers every day, with more than 160,000 live views since it went online in December. The site is getting hits from around the world, and although there are other “eagle cams” around the country, the two eggs in Lake Jordan’s nest were the first to hatch. That has made celebrities out of the Jordan Lake eagle family.
A view from the eagle cam
Online eagle fans delight in watching the parents bring fresh fish to their nest to feed the two eaglets. The eaglets looked like tiny gray puffballs when they hatched but now, at two weeks old, they are developing stubby wings.
Sometimes the eagle dad rearranges the nest with new branches, only to have his mate come and move the sticks around. When one eaglet gets more than his fair share of food, one of the parents walks around the nest to feed the other one, gently offering bits of fish with a giant curved beak. (Warning: Watching the eagles can be addictive. A few of us here at the Alumni Association have become fans, with one staff member dubbing the group “Wingdings.”)
The project started two years ago. Simons worked with NC State computer science students on the technical part. Brent Lineberger ’96 ’01 mr, who owns a tree service in Raleigh, helped hoist the equipment some 80 feet up into a loblolly pine when the nest was dormant. Since the same pair (eagles mate for life) had been using the nest for several years, Simons could be fairly sure they would return.
The view from below the nest
One of the biggest challenges was the remote location. The camera runs on solar and battery power, and the team found a private landowner on the other side of the lake who agreed to let his shed be used to house an antenna and an internet connection. “It was total seat of the pants,” says Simons. “All volunteer. We didn’t have any funding.”
The first year was successful, with two eaglets hatching and eventually fledging in the spring. This year looks to be a repeat of that success.
“We have a tremendous following on Facebook,” Simons says. Next year he’s hoping to push the technology and work toward a clearer screen image. But the real goal is to illustrate and help the public feel a personal connection to one of the country’s great conservation success stories.
Bald eagles were threatened with extinction in the 1960s because of pesticides that ended up in their food supply. After pesticide regulations were changed, the birds began to make a comeback. Today, there are some 75 to 80 nesting pairs in North Carolina, Simons says, many of them along the coast. “This is a very powerful way to help people make a connection with wildlife,” he says.
After more than a decade teaching ornithology, Simons said he is still captivated by the eagles. “They still make my hair stand up,” he says. “They are such spectacular birds.”
– Sylvia Adock ’81
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Gov. Bev Perdue has appointed Jimmy Clark ’74 to NC State’s Board of Trustees to replace Gayle Lanier, whose term expired.
Clark, a registered professional engineer, is owner and president of Guy M. Turner Inc. Founded in 1924, the Greensboro-based company specializes in heavy rigging, specialized transportation and crane services. It has 10 offices in seven states around the U.S.
“I’m very excited about being appointed to the Board of Trustees,” Clark says. “I credit the education I got from NC State University for my success as an individual and for my success of my business. This is a way for me to give back to the university.”
Clark has served as chair of the NC State Board of Visitors and is a member of the NC State Engineering Foundation Board, Dean’s Circle, Student Aid Association, Alumni Association and The Walter Hines Page Society. He has also served on the Park Scholarship Selection Committee.
In 2007, Clark established the Jimmy D. Clark Distinguished Professorship for NC State’s Department of Civil, Construction and Environmental Engineering.
“I always had the plan to give back to the university and stay involved with the university,” he says.”Now, I want to assist the existing board by improving the university, the business community associated with the university and the value associated with an NC State degree.”
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In the winter issue, NC State magazine wrote about two books dealing with Everett Case’s legacy that came out in November 2011. Historian J. Samuel Walker wrote ACC Basketball, The Story of the Rivalries, Traditions, and Scandals of the First Two Decades of the Atlantic Coast Conference. The second one was The Classic: How Everett Case and His Tournament Brought Big-Time Basketball to the South, written by Bethany Bradsher, a Greenville, N.C., freelance journalist.
Bradsher spent the Christmas season on a book tour. (Click here to see a video by NC State’s Don Shea from one of those stops). After the frenzy settled down, we caught up with her to discuss how the book has been received and what she’s heard out on her tour.
So, since last we spoke, describe how the book’s been received? Well, it’s been wonderful, particularly in the month or so before Christmas. It was overwhelming in a way. Reorders, and such. Since Christmas, there’s been a little of a different buzz with people who have read it. The book was under their trees. Some of those are those featured in the book. To me, that’s the kind of buzz that will carry a little further. At the events, one of the highlights has been having players and former assistant coaches from the Dixie Classic appear with me. …It’s funny, I’ve had people say that, “You have covered the basketball player really well.” But I think I hear that you can find what you like in it. You don’t have to be a basketball fan. There’ s the civil rights stuff in there, too.
When you encounter NC State fans, what do they say about it? Well, I get younger fans who didn’t know much about it. Which was my hope when I wrote about it. I’ve been up front that I didn’t know much about the Dixie Classic when I started writing. I came into this with them. In some ways it’s been neat. I kind of understand where they’re coming from. For the older fans, it just brings back good memories. It’s just nostalgia.
After meeting people, has there been a story that emerged concerning the Wolfpack or Case that you wished you had known in writing the book? Somebody told me that there had been club/intramural teams playing like a mini-Dixie Classic at the time. There’s a surgeon there in Raleigh, and he said his father used to host the coaches. He was a little boy, and I would have loved to hear those stories.
What feelings about Case has the book drawn out of readers? It does seem that people are starting to have their eyes open to what his impact was. …His legacy has been a little more highlighted. …Those that were around him are reminded of who he was, a great salesman, a great promoter.
I know you like these historical sports pieces. Do you already have an idea of what’s next for you? I’ve had a couple of ideas. I think I’m just waiting for some of the right doors to open. There’s a couple of ideas that lie with basketball. And maybe one with football.
Bradsher has a handful of signings and appearances coming up in Raleigh. On Feb. 4, she’ll be at RBC Center, signing and selling books at the Wake Forest men’s basketball game. On Feb. 6, she’ll be at the Rotary Club of Raleigh. And on Feb. 18, she’ll be signing books at a reception for NC State’s Office of Parents & Family Services at Vaughn Towers.
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It’s been a while since Tim O’Connell has called NC State home. He graduated in 1994 with a master’s in public administration and a master’s in parks, recreation and tourism management.
From there, Tim went onto a 20-year career with the YMCA in North Carolina, most recently serving as vice president of operations for the YMCA of Northwest North Carolina. In that job, Tim saw the far-reaching impact of NC State. He felt the pull to come back.
“What brought me back was moving away and seeing NC State’s effect on the state,” he says. “I could see it in the communities I was in with the YMCA. I could see it in the rural communities and the textile communities.”
Tim joined the Alumni Association in December as the associate executive director for membership. We talked with him about returning to NC State and his role in the Alumni Association.
His background: I’ve been in North Carolina for about 35 years. I grew up in the Triangle. I’ve been married for 20 years. I’ve got two kids, Delaney and Keegan.
Favorite NC State memory: One of the neatest experiences was when they set up a dinner one night with Bill Friday. Growing up in North Carolina, I knew him as one of the great leaders in the state. He was so interested in our education. We were in the Velvet Cloak Inn and I remember we all had to find a suit.
On returning to NC State: I’ve been gone from the area five years, but I had to re-walk the campus. In 1991, when I was here as a student, I would mountain bike on Centennial Campus. I’d fish in Lake Raleigh. And now it has modern research facilities.
His role at the Alumni Association: My role is to excite our alumni about the work of the university and to get them engaged and building the future with each other. …Since I’ve gotten here, it’s been getting to know the key volunteers and meeting with university staff.
On the importance of being a member: In this day and age, they say it’s not your 401k, it’s your network. I’d say it’s imperative.
The most rewarding experience since he’s been back: Taking the time to walk campus and seeing the students. The future’s being built with them here and now.
Why he’s Red and White for Life: Because of the character and values the university represents — ingenuity, hard work and an appreciation of the state’s natural resources. What NC State is about is what I want to be about.
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Norma Wright Garcia in a 1966 photo from the Alumni Association files
Norma Wright Garcia was more interested in learning about history than in making it. In the process, though, she managed to do both.
Garcia, the first African-American female to earn an undergraduate degree from NC State, died Monday in a small town in Eastern North Carolina not far from the Sampson County farm where she grew up. She was 68.
Garcia had deep roots in Eastern North Carolina, where she was a public school teacher for 25 years. But she used education as a way to explore the world, to learn about different cultures and, almost as an afterthought, to make a bit of history herself.
Garcia’s sister, Nova Williams, says they grew up on a farm in Sampson County. Their father grew everything from cotton and tobacco to corn and cucumbers. Meanwhile, their mother, who had taught herself to read and write, insisted that her children learn to read. Williams says there was always a newspaper and books in the house.
“She would buy the newspaper for us to read, and we would read it when we were very young,” Williams says. “We would read everything we could get our hands on. When they were out in the field working, we would be in the house reading.”
Williams says her sister was fascinated by history, in part due to the family history that was evident in the nearby slave cemetery. Williams says that interest in history was what led Garcia to NC State. “She had studied so much about history that she wanted to major in history,” Williams says. “That’s why she decided on State.”
NC State was not quite ready for Garcia, though. There was no housing available for women at NC State in 1962, according to a story about Garcia in the 2007 issue of Accolades, a magazine of the College of Humanities and Social Sciences. So Garcia began her college career at St. Augustine’s College in Raleigh, moving to NC State when the university opened its first dorm for women in 1964.
If she had any difficulties as the only African-American woman on campus, you wouldn’t know it from Garcia. In the 2007 article, Garcia said her new classmates were friendly to her. The first male African-American students had enrolled at NC State about a decade earlier, and NC State had hired its first black instructor in 1962.
“We were all new, and it was the first year for the women’s dorm,” she said. “I never felt out of place. I met people in the dorm, in my classes, in the cafeteria. What brought us together was what we had in common, not our skin color.”
Nova Williams says her sister was not thinking about being a trailblazer when she went to NC State. “Oh, no, she never complained about that,” Williams says. “She said she would always stay busy reading.”
Garcia did recall one classmate who refused to sit next to her and then stopped coming to class in protest of Garcia’s presence there. Garcia’s response? “Fine, you’ll fail.”
Norma Wright Garcia during a 2007 appearance at NC State
Garcia took advantage of all the cultural offerings available on campus, saying later that her time at NC State helped shape her world view. “I met a lot of people from other countries who I never would have met had I stayed on the farm,” she said. “My experiences at NC State made me more aware and interested in the world around me.”
Garcia also caught the travel bug, making a solo trip to Mexico after graduation. But not before taking time to learn Spanish. She later earned a master’s degree in German from Wake Forest University and lived in Germany for six months. She treasured her travels around the world.
“My travels have taught me so much, and become of history major, I’ve been able to appreciate the beauty of Italy, Rome, and the Vatican, the art of Paris, and the vibrancy of Honduras so much more since I know what I am looking for when I go,” she said.
But Garcia always returned home to Eastern North Carolina, where she taught social studies, history and Spanish at various schools in Halifax and Sampson counties. She taught Spanish at Union High School in Rose Hill from 1998 to 2003.
Williams says Garcia encouraged her students to go to college, frequently giving them books and correcting them when they spoke incorrectly. “She encouraged so many folks,” Williams says.
Williams says her sister had fond memories of her time at NC State, and the opportunities it gave her to explore the world and teach other children from rural North Carolina.
“She wanted people to know that she was the first black female to graduate from NC State,” Williams says. “She was very proud of that.”
Garcia is survived by two sisters. The funeral will be at 2:30 p.m. Sunday, Jan. 15, at Roseville Baptist Church in Willard, N.C. Burial will be at the church cemetery.
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As the director of bands at NC State from 1982 to 1994, Frank Hammond pushed his students to play their instruments better than they thought possible and to perform shows that, at times, seemed ridiculously ambitious. He helped them develop a lifelong love of music that would stay with them as they moved on to careers as engineers or chemists or chefs. And he taught them lessons that had little to do with music.
“I probably learned more from him than any other professor,” says Rob Faggart, a 1993 graduate from China Grove, N.C. “But it was not about music. It was about life, about responsibility, about doing what you loved and doing everything to the best of your ability.”
Hammond died Jan. 7 at his home in Washington, N.C. He was 78.
Many of Hammond’s former students spent time with Hammond at a surprise reunion in November at the Washington Yacht and Country Club. About 50 students, some of them from as far away at Washington state and Florida, came to honor a man that they considered a mentor and a friend. They each brought their instrument and performed the NC State fight song from memory.
“There are some people that pour into your life and expect nothing in return other than for you to be a better person. That really personifies who he was to me,” says Glenn Massengill of Clayton, N.C., who has three degrees from NC State. “He really gave selflessly of himself and he was so humble. It was always about what you were doing, how much better you could be.”
Massengill, who sells plastic additives and colorants as an account executive for Ampacet Corp., couldn’t read music when he came to NC State in 1987 and, as a result, did not make the cut when he first tried out for the marching band. But he said Hammond put him in a rehearsal band, where he learned to play music. Massengill went on to become the field conductor for the marching band, and he continues to play the trumpet and other brass instruments today.
“I wasn’t the most talented person, but what he did was really push me beyond what I thought my potential was,” he says. “I still play today, and it’s been 25 years. He said that music could be part of your life and not consume your life.”
Jennifer Fuller, a 1991 graduate, recalls Hammond pushing her to play a flute solo with the university’s symphonic band. Fuller, who is now an engineer with the N.C. Department of Transportation, said she suffered from such terrible stage fright that she could not imaging performing a solo.
“He pushed me to do things that I really wasn’t comfortable doing musically,” she says. “He pushed me, and I’m glad he did. He helped me realize some potential and build some self confidence. He believed in all of his students. It didn’t occur to him that you couldn’t do it.”
Fuller says Hammond set high standards for the band and helped each member play better. But she said his lessons often had nothing to do with music. “If you were having trouble with something musically, he was there for you,” she says. “But he was there to bounce off any old problem, what to do with the rest of your life. He was always glad to see you.”
Faggart says he continues to benefit from Hammond’s lessons, noting that he recently decided to follow his passion by enrolling in culinary school. “He just had a real passion for life that came through in everything he did,” he says. “He got extremely excited about everything we did.”
Visitation will be held at Hammond’s home at 129 Fairway Drive, Washington, N.C., from 4-7 p.m. on Thursday, Jan. 12. A memorial service will be held at 11 a.m. on Friday, Jan. 13, at St. Peter’s Episcopal Church in Washington.
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Photo courtesy of the U.S. Army
NC State saw one of its own featured Saturday when the West defeated the East, 24-12, in the annual U.S. Army All-American Bowl for top high school players.
The NC State connection came in the form of Army Chief of Staff Gen. Ray Odierno ’86 MSE, who was sworn in that position in September 2011. Odierno was featured in a message with a couple of players during the game in San Antonio.
According to ARNews, Odierno met with the players on Friday. In his remarks, he stressed to the players that their futures need to include more than just football.
“Now the last thing I leave you with is that you all have an opportunity and many of you told me that you’ve been accepted by this college or that college,” he told the players. “Now that means you have an opportunity to improve yourself for later in life. And that opportunity is not only to get to play football, but also to get an education… and you’ll be able to move forward and contribute to society in a big way,” he said.
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Joe and Ginger Taylor never studied at NC State, but they have become strong advocates of the university and major financial supporters of the work being done at NC State.
So Joe and Ginger Taylor will be recognized during Sunday’s basketball game against Maryland as honorary alumni of NC State. The designation, approved by the board of directors of the Alumni Association, has been given to only 14 people. Joe Taylor is an attorney and partner in Murchison, Taylor & Gibson PLLC in Wilmington. Ginger Taylor is a former high school teacher.
The Taylors, who live in Wrightsville Beach, were nominated for the designation by Johnny Wynne, dean of the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences, in recognition of their contributions to the college, ARTS NC State, NCSU Libraries and Cooperative Extension. The Taylors have solicited new donors to the university and served as co-chairs of the university’s $1 billion comprehensive campaign. They sponsored a garden at the JC Raulston Arboretum during its Raise the Roof Campaign
The Taylors have also donated — and encouraged others to donate — environmentally sensitive land to the university as part of their effort to preserve North Carolina’s natural resources and to promote environmental education and sustainable agricultural economic polices.
“The Taylors’ generosity has inspired landowners to contact our College in the hope of preserving their lands for the benefit of all North Carolinians, while generating income and tax incentives,” Wynne wrote in his nomination of the Taylors. “Joe and Ginger are leading this monumental effort, which is Joe’s innovation. We believe the potential is tremendous, and we have seen a great increase in activity that can be directly attributed to Joe and Ginger’s work in this area.
“Lands contributed by and because of the Taylors are used to further the research, teaching and extension programs that form the mission of our land-grant university.”
While the Taylors did not attend NC State, their son and daughter both graduated from the university. “The personal attention and mentoring provided to their children here is one reason for the Taylors’ strong devotion to our university,” Wynne wrote.
Previous recipients of the honorary alumni designation:
1997 – Jeff McNeill
1988 – Frank Grainger, Sam Lee
2001 – Sue M. Daughtridge
2002 – Kay Yow
2003 – George Worsley
2004 – Dick Robb, Robert A. Barnhardt, Shirley Barnhardt
2006 – Jacqueline and Curtis Dail
2009 – Parker Overton, Frank Weedon
2011 – Don Shea
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