The Asheville-Buncombe Technical Community College Board of Trustees has honored Harvey Lee Haynes ’55 MAEd ’64, A-B Tech president emeritus, by naming the school’s computer science facility the Haynes Building. Haynes served A-B Tech in various capacities for 46 years. He received the WCU Alumni Association’s Distinguished Alumnus Award in 1990.
Luanne Gibson Teague ’55, a former teacher in Bryson City, and husband Bill are celebrating 62 years of marriage. They have three children and four grandchildren. The couple owned and operated a sign business in Greenville, South Carolina, for 20 years. They live in Simpsonville, South Carolina.
Although the building on Centennial Drive that once housed the Town House was damaged beyond repair in a fire in 2013, some of the romantic connections made there have stood the test of time. Harold Wayne Crawley ’66 still remembers the day more than a half century ago when he walked into the small restaurant, which was the center of campus social life in the 1960s, and saw his future wife Patty Brady Crawley seated at a booth with friends. After having lunch together, they made plans for a date in Sylva. “I was anxious to meet her again because I thought she was beautiful,” said Wayne Crawley, who had returned to campus to finish his studies after serving in the U.S. Army. They have been married for 54 years, have two sons and live in High Springs, Florida, north of Gainesville. “The Town House has a very special place in our memories,” said Patty Crawley.
Steve Craver ’76 has been named to the advisory board of LifeCenters Communities. Craver is a certified executive coach, life planner and strategic business planner. He lives in Franklin, Tennessee. LifeCenters Communities offer independent living, assisted living and memory care for seniors in the southeastern U.S.
Brenda Gorsuch ’77 MAEd ’80 has retired from her teaching career of 34 years at West Henderson High School in Hendersonville. Gorsuch, who taught journalism, was adviser for the school’s nationally recognized quarterly news magazine, online news website and yearbook. Under her leadership, the school’s publications achieved multiple awards from the Columbia Scholastic Press Association and the National Scholastic Press Association.
Don Good ’78, professor of educational leadership at East Tennessee State University, and Rebecca Lasher, WCU assistant professor of social work, have published an article, “College Experiences of the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians,” in the Research in Higher Education Journal. The article describes a study that Good and Lasher conducted in which they examined the educational experiences of Eastern Band students.
Leslie Nolan ’79 has moved to Ukraine to pursue her longtime dream of joining the Peace Corps. Nolan is living in a small village outside of Kiev as she learns the East Slavic language and customs as part of her initial training for Peace Corps work. She will be involved in community economic development in the area. Nolan was formerly executive director of the Wilton (Connecticut) Historical Society. She also previously worked for the Gabor Peterdi Studio, the Center for Contemporary Printmaking in Norwalk, Connecticut, and the Museum of the City of New York.
After retiring from his career of 30 years as a educator, Jim Hyatt ’81 MPA ’86 EDS ’90 found he wasn’t ready to stop working. Hyatt served as a substitute teacher for a year at Chesnee (South Carolina) High School and then joined the school’s faculty full time as a government teacher and the director of athletics. A member of the North Carolina Baseball Coaches Association Hall of Fame, he formerly coached at West Henderson High School, which won a state baseball championship under his leadership.
The National Space Club’s Florida committee has named Jack B. Lyle ’81 to membership in the club’s Hall of Fame for his contributions to space technology for the U.S. Lyle was one of 12 inductees. His name will be included at the U.S. Space Walk of Fame in Titusville, Florida. Lyle is chief scientist for integration systems at Millennium Engineering and Integration Company in Melbourne, Florida.
Ronnie Metcalf ’86 is the continuing education planner for the Mountain Area Health Education Center located in Asheville. Metcalf’s work focuses on providing educational programming and clinical consultation and instruction for health care providers in 16 Western North Carolina counties. A former WCU faculty member who serves on the School of Nursing’s educational advisory board, Metcalf earned his doctorate in nursing at North Carolina State University.
Burlington attorney Franklin “Paul” Koonts ’88 has been elected chair of the Alamance County Chamber of Commerce. Koonts is a partner in the firm of Oertel, Koonts and Oertel, where he specializes in civil litigation and business and municipal law. He and his wife, Jeanmarie Rampolla Koonts ’88, have been married for 28 years and have three children.
Charlotte artist David Williams ’88 completed a three-dimensional wall mural of sea creatures at the J.N. “Ding” Darling National Wildlife Refuge of Sanibel, Florida. Williams was introduced to 3-D work during a graphic design internship at the North Carolina Zoo. He has created panels and signage for zoos, aquariums, museums and nature centers throughout the Southeast.
Michele Piekutowski ’91 has been named chief human resources officer at Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. Piekutowski previously was associate vice president for human resources and chief human resources officer at Clemson University, where she earned her master’s degree in human resource development.
Melanie Adams ’92 MSA ’09 has been named principal of Flat Rock Middle School in Henderson County. Adams previously was a teacher of physical education and exceptional children and assistant principal at the school. She also has served as principal of Apple Valley Middle School and assistant principal at East Henderson High School.
Stephanie Goodell ’92 has been appointed to a three-year term on the Commission for Women of Somerville, Massachusetts. Goodell is the founder of Samaya Consulting LLC of Cambridge, Massachusetts. She recently joined Interactive Business Inclusion Solutions Consulting Group of Framington, Massachusetts, to lead sales, marketing and product development.
Jacqueline D. Grant ’92 is serving as president-elect of the North Carolina Bar Association. A lifelong Asheville resident, Grant is a partner and litigator with Roberts & Stevens law firm. She will be officially installed as president of the association in June 2018, becoming the first woman attorney from Asheville to serve in that role.
Adomani Inc. of Newport Beach, California, has gone public on Nasdaq. Edward Monfort ’92 is founder and chief technology officer of the company, which makes technology to convert vehicle gas engines to electric.
Jack Evans MAEd ’93 has been named principal at Greeneville (Tennessee) Middle School. Evans served more than 25 years as a mathematics teacher, assistant principal and principal at schools in Buncombe County. A former Buncombe County Principal of the Year, he was the principal of North Buncombe High School for the past 12 years.
Catawba Valley Community College honored Alexandra “Andra” Earp Ingle ’94 with the college’s 2017 award for teaching excellence. Ingle has been a member of the early childhood education faculty for more than 13 years. Before joining the college, she worked as a speech therapist for Yancey and Alexander county schools and as a pre-kindergarten teacher for Caldwell County Schools. She is married to Kevin Ingle ’94.
Progressive Grocer magazine named Food Lion executive Christy Phillips-Brown ’95 of Charlotte as one of the “Top Women in Grocery” for 2017. Phillips-Brown oversees public relations, communications and community relations for the Food Lion grocery store company headquartered in Salisbury. She was instrumental in the development of a national program, Food Lion Feeds, which provides meals to families and individuals in need.
Nicole Nixon Augusté MA ’99 of Savannah, Georgia, has published a book, “Rome’s Female Saints: A Poetic Pilgrimage to the Eternal City.” Augusté’s book of biography, prayer and poetry stems from a research fellowship to Rome. It was published by WestBow Press. Augusté is a professor of liberal arts at Savannah College of Art and Design.
K.C. Culler ’00 has been elected vice president of the Sports Information Directors Association of the Central Intercollegiate Athletic Association. Culler is in his third year as sports information director at Johnson C. Smith University in Charlotte.
Nathan Marshburn ’00 is a criminal defense attorney working in the law office of M. Blair Payne, public defender for the Third Judicial Circuit in Perry, Florida. Marshburn recently was promoted to work exclusively on homicide and death penalty cases. He is certified by the Florida Bar Association as a specialist in criminal trial law.
Jason Brown ’01 MPA ’09 is chief deputy of the Henderson County Sheriff’s Department. Brown previously was employed by the Georgia Bureau of Investigation and the Transylvania County Sheriff’s Department. He joined the Henderson County department
David B. Culpepper ’01 was elected to the town council of Franklin in November 2017. Culpepper owns Culpepper’s Architectural Salvage in Otto.
Jason Anderson ’02 has joined the Winston-Salem office of First Citizens Bank. A High Point native, Anderson previously worked for banks in the Piedmont Triad area of North Carolina as a small business financial specialist, business banker and commercial relationship manager. In his new position, he will be serving business customers in Forsyth County.
Odell Williams ’02, cross country and track and field coach at East Burke High School for the past 18 years, has joined Lenoir Rhyne University as an assistant coach. In his new position, Williams is reunited with Danny Williamson ’84 MAEd ’86, who became head coach for track and field at Lenoir Rhyne after he retired from his longtime coaching career at WCU. Williamson coached Williams when he was a WCU student-athlete.
Photographer Cathy Price Anderson ’03 of Morganton has found her professional niche specializing in adventure and extreme sports portraits, primarily in Western North Carolina settings. Anderson photographs athletes in rock climbing, high-lining, whitewater kayaking and other outdoor recreation activities, using studio lighting to create dramatic shots. “The setups are crazy and complicated, especially when you haul 50 to 100 pounds of gear on mountain trails, but it is so worth it,” she said. “As a woman, I’ve never been more fulfilled and determined to keep pushing the envelope, especially to raise awareness for extreme sports and female athletes.” Anderson’s work was featured in the May 2017 Instagram Takeover feature of Blue Ridge Outdoors magazine.
Kimberly Arrowood Cashwell ’03 of Marion and husband William have a son, William Keith Cashwell, born Sept. 2, 2017.
Dan Clauss MAEd ’03 has been named athletics director at Saddleback College in Mission Viejo, California. Clauss comes to Saddleback from Cerritos College in Norwalk, California, where he has held a similar position since 2011. In his new position, he also will serve as dean of kinesiology and athletics.
Bob Boylan ’07 MPM ’17 has been named director of WCU’s Local Government Training Program and assistant director of the university’s Public Policy Institute. Boylan previously was an information technology administrative assistant at WCU. The Local Government Training Program provides assistance and leadership instruction to public officials and staff members in the 26 westernmost counties of North Carolina.
Justin Gough ’07 is dealer-partner at Scenic Motors Inc., an automotive dealership located in Mount Airy. His grandfather founded the business in 1957.
Laura Hensley ’07 traveled to Australia in the summer of 2017 to study coral reef ecology and conservation of marine systems in a global field course sponsored by Miami University’s Earth Expeditions. Hensley, who is studying for her master’s degree at Miami University, is an interpreter at Alaska Sealife Center in Seward, Alaska.
Mitchell Hutchings ’07 was named a 2018 quarterfinalist for the national music educator award presented by the Recording Academy and the Grammy Museum. Hutchings, who teaches applied voice and serves as director of the opera at Oregon State University, was among 197 U.S. music teachers who reached quarterfinalist status. Hutchings’ baritone voice has entertained audiences from Carnegie Hall in the U.S. to the Antonin Dvorak Museum in Prague. He received WCU’s Young Alumnus Award in 2016.
Critically acclaimed novelist David Joy ’07 MA ’09 is recipient of the WCU Alumni Association’s 2017 Young Alumnus Award, presented as part of activities at Homecoming weekend in October. His first novel, “Where All Light Tends To Go,” was published in 2015 and was a finalist for the International Dublin Literary Award, one of the top honors in the publishing world. His second novel, “The Weight Of This World,” was released earlier this year, and a third novel, “The Line That Held Us,” is due out next summer. He is a native of Charlotte who resides in Haywood County.
Jason Melvin ’07 is the new assistant director for technical support services at WCU’s Ramsey Center. Melvin, formerly electronics coordinator for WCU’s Pride of the Mountains Marching Band, previously was the creative director of Riverside Cove Ministries of Cullowhee.
A former director of prospect strategy and research at UNC Charlotte, Ben Pendry ’07 returned to his alma mater in August to take the position of executive director of advancement services. Pendry previously held positions as major gifts officer at UNC Charlotte and the Sigma Chi Foundation. A former chair of the Charlotte-area WCU Alumni Club and former member of the Alumni Association Board of Directors, he served as house corporation president for Kappa Gamma Chapter of Sigma Chi. He and wife Jenna have a son, Branch.
Break Diving Inc., a charitable foundation established by Monroe Mann ME ’08 in New York City, has a mission to help individuals achieve professional and personal success. Mann, whose career has included military service in Iraq, acting, software development, authoring books and policy academy training, serves as executive director.
Christie Fulcher Osborne MA ’08 has been appointed to the advisory council of the Inyo-Mono Broadband Consortium Council as the representative for Mammoth Lakes, California. The council is a public body that works to increase broadband internet access in the rural areas of the eastern Sierra Nevada Mountains. Osborne also serves on the Mammoth Lakes recreation commission.
Julie Heather Cody Utke ’08 and her team at NASCAR Productions in Charlotte won an Emmy award from the National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences for “Outstanding Social TV Experience.” Utke was the coordinating producer for the winning NASCAR entry, “100,000 Cameras: The Daytona 500.” Utke is married to Corey Utke ’08.
Deiah Vambe ’08 is serving as marketing specialist for a new movement studio, Tribe Dance and Pole in Asheville. The studio offers classes for all ages and levels in Zumba, hip-hop, ballet fundamentals, modern fusion and all levels of pole dancing.
Anna Browning ’09 is the author of three children’s books. Her latest work is “Tanner Turbeyfill and the Moon Rocks,” a collaboration with Josh Crawford ’10, the book’s illustrator. Crawford is a graphic designer who lives in Waynesville. Browning and her husband, Kevin Gath, live in Chicago, Illinois.
Aaron Drew Coleman ’09 is one of 40 research scholars in the U.S. selected for a health policy leadership program of the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation. Coleman is in the second year of a doctoral program at the Heller School for Social Policy and Management at Brandeis University. As a research scholar in the program, he will receive a stipend of up to $30,000 a year for up to four years, as well as mentorship, training and education to allow him to focus on research that seeks to improve health and wellbeing in the U.S.
Manteo Mitchell ’09 MAEd ’13, the 2012 U.S. Olympic silver medalist in the 4×400 relay, is back in training. Mitchell, who was sidelined by a foot injury in an auto accident last year, is preparing for the U.S. Track and Field indoor championships to be held in February in Albuquerque, New Mexico. He is training with Danny Williamson ’84 MAEd ’86, his former track and field coach. While recovering from his accident, Mitchell stayed busy working as a model, motivational speaker and health and fitness consultant.
Jesse Ramirez ’09 is an officer and member of the SWAT unit of the Asheville Police Department. Ramirez is married to Adrianne Petrilli ’07, benefits supervisor at Harrah’s Cherokee Casino. They have a 3-year-old son and a 1-year-old daughter.
Josh Carl ’10 is co-owner and operator of Mint Hill’s craft beer brewery, Barking Duck Brewing Company. The brewery, which opened in 2014, is expanding to a three-barrel system that will allow Carl and his partner and former roommate, Jake Reynolds, to distribute its craft beer to bars and restaurants in the area.
Alex Edwards ’10 MS ’13 has joined the faculty of Tate’s School, a private school in Knoxville, Tennessee, as middle-school science teacher. Edwards is pursuing his doctoral degree in ecology and evolutionary biology at the University of Tennessee.
Kyle Hunter MAEd ’10 was named Rockingham County Schools’ Teacher of the Year for 2017-18. Hunter teaches science at Rockingham Early College
Hope Huskey MPM ’10 and Jacob Reed ’04 are winners of the Native American 40 Under 40 Award from the National Center for American Indian Enterprise Development. Huskey is associate director of the Sequoyah Fund, and Reed is economic analyst for the commerce division of the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians. The awards were presented at the Northwest Enterprise Development Conference held in Tulalip, Washington, in September 2017.
Whit France-Kelly MAEd ’11 (right) and Abi Aparajithan MAEd ’12 (left) are engaged. France-Kelly proposed to Aparajithan while the two were hiking inside Juneau’s Mendenhall Glacier’s ice cave in Alaska. She is pursing her doctoral degree in higher education and student affairs at the University of Iowa. He is employed at the University of Iowa Center for Advancement and is also working toward a doctorate. They live in Iowa City, Iowa.
Amy Roberts Hipps ’11 and husband Sheldon have a son, Samson, born on Oct. 3, 2017. Amy Hipps is the private events director at Trump National Golf Course in Mooresville.
Sharon Montague ’11 has been promoted to regional director of total service for Harrah’s Cherokee Casino and Resort. Montague joined Harrah’s in 1998 as office administrator and served as special events and promotions manager before becoming the casino’s total service manager in 2013.
The magazine Search & Employ selected U.S. Air Force Capt. Christopher Paek ’12 MCM ’15 for its 2017 list of Top 40 Under 40 military personnel. Search & Employ is a civilian career guide for transitioning and veteran military personnel. The honorees, top service members who are or have served in the U.S. armed forces, were announced in November 2017 in honor of Veterans Day.
Aleyah Pryor-Pankey MS ’12 received the Leader in Diversity Award from the Triangle Business Journal. Pryor-Pankey, executive director for diversity, equity and inclusion for the University of North Carolina Health Care System, was one of seven people who received the award. The Triangle Business Journal covers the Raleigh, Chapel Hill and Durham areas.
Sean Ross MFA ’12 has been named regional vice president of casino marketing for Harrah’s Cherokee Casino and Resort. Ross, a member of the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians, has held multiple positions at Harrah’s since he joined the company in 2002 as a member of the Cherokee Development Program, which prepares tribal members for leadership roles in the Harrah’s enterprise.
Amelia Holmes ’13 has accepted a position as chief archivist at the Nantucket (Massachusetts) Historical Association. Holmes will manage the association’s research library. A former student assistant at WCU’s Hunter Library, she recently completed her master’s degree in library science at UNC-Chapel Hill.
Michael Bardon ’14 and Blair Hoyle co-directed a romantic horror film, “Happy Endings Are a Rarity,” that has been released on DVD and Blu-ray. The cast and crew feature several WCU alumni.
Melissa Day ’14 is studying for a master’s degree at Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary in Charlotte. Day is the author of “No Greater Love,” published by Christian Faith Publishing.
U.S. Marine Corps 1st Lt. Ryan Hermance ’14 is stationed in Okinawa, Japan, where he serves as a logistics officer. Hermance, former president of the WCU Student Government Association, and his wife, Kathryn Farthing ’13, are enjoying life in Okinawa. “While we do miss a lot of things from the states, Okinawa offers beautiful vacation spots as well as the opportunity to travel all across Southeast Asia,” he said. Recently, they have traveled to Osaka, Kyoto, Tokyo, Taiwan, Thailand and Mount Fuji. Hermance’s sister Melissa is currently a junior at WCU studying communications sciences and disorders. All three are from Newton.
Jeremy Wilson ’14 has been elected to serve on the 12-member tribal council of the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians. Wilson will represent the Wolftown community on the council.
Former Lady Cats volleyball player Addy McKay George ’15 is
playing professionally with a team in the German Third Division. George is the newest middle blocker for proWIN Volleys TV Holz, located near Saarbrucken, Germany.
George is a nurse at the Landstuhl Regional Medical Center in Landstuhl, Germany.
Clay Howarth ’15 competed in hill running at the national level in the USA Track and Field Mountain Running Championships held in June 2017 at Cranmore Mountain in New Hampshire. Howarth, a former cross country runner at WCU, placed sixth in the race.
Alicia Jacobs ’15 has been named to the board of directors of the American Indian Science and Engineering Society. Jacobs, a member of the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians, serves as the Jones-Bowman leadership specialist at the Ray Kinsland Leadership Institute, a department of the Cherokee Boys Club.
Jesse Loyd ’15 teaches middle school social studies and music at Summit Charter School in Cashiers. Loyd is married to Megan Mills Loyd, one of the coaches for the color guard of WCU’s Pride of the Mountains Marching Band. Both are former marching band members.
Daniel Ross ’15 has signed a songwriting contract with the Nashville music companies Big Machine Music and Tree Vibez Music. A native of Hope Mills, Ross has performed with bands all over the Southeast. He has been living in Nashville and focusing on writing songs since graduating from WCU.
Robert Steeps MHS ’15 is one of the authors of a research article published in the Western Journal of Emergency Medicine, a peer-reviewed scientific medical publication. The article examines a survey of 350 emergency medical services professionals’ attitudes about a new health care concept in which EMS workers would treat minor injuries or help manage chronic illnesses in patient homes or other community care facilities. Steeps’ co-authors were WCU faculty members Denise A. Wilfong ’94 MHS ’00 and Michael Hubble.
Joshua Wilkey ’15 MA ’17 writes an online blog, “This Appalachia Life,” that focuses on regional struggles with poverty. Wilkey is a visiting instructor at Brevard College.
Temi Adeleye ’16 has joined the television news team at KEYC News 12 in Mankato, Minnesota, as a reporter. Adeleye earned her master’s degree in journalism from Emerson College in Boston, Massachusetts. KEYC News is affiliated with CBS and Fox.
Rhett Harrelson ’16, former standout men’s basketball player and team captain at WCU, is head coach of the Enterprise High School boys basketball team in Enterprise, Alabama. Harrelson is a 2012 graduate of the school and former basketball player, believed to be the school’s all-time leading scorer in the sport.
Hannah Day ’17 was a participant in Broadway Dreams, a weeklong intensive performing arts training program held in Charlotte in the summer of 2017 that focused on acting, voice and dance disciplines. As part of her training, Day attended master classes in performing and learned about the business side of show business. In
the fall, she was a member of the cast of “Mary Poppins” at Children’s Theater of Charlotte.