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mentary t h e q u a r t e r ly o f c o k e r c o l l e g e , h a r t s v i l l e , s o u t h c a r o l i n a

14 C o b r a s

M e n ’ s

S o cc e r

Conference Carolinas Champions


Bush Announces Retirement

>> C A M P U S I S S U E W I N T E R ’ 0 9

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contents >> C ampus news | 4 >> Homecomin g | 5 >> O  n the Road WITH FRANK | 8 >> Development | 10


>> Athletics | 14


AWARDED NATIONA Coker biology professor Dr. Joseph Flaherty is a recipient of the National Science Foundation’s most prestigious award for junior faculty members, the Faculty Early Career Development (CAREER) grant. The $502,000 grant will enhance the College’s biology program by supporting Flaherty’s student-centered research on the genetics of fungal diseases that cause tremendous damage to agricultural crops worldwide. Flaherty, assistant professor of biology and chair of Coker’s department of science and mathematics, will receive the CAREER grant over a period of five years. By awarding him the grant, the National Science Foundation is recognizing Flaherty as one of the country’s foremost teacher-scholars who combines education and research into their programs. “This award is acknowledging Joe’s exceptional capabilities as a teacher and researcher and, just as importantly at Coker College, his commitment to mentoring students,” said Dr. Patricia Lincoln, provost and dean of the faculty. Since joining the Coker College faculty in 2005, Flaherty’s goal has been to develop a research program that is built on student participation. Several of Flaherty’s recent students have already continued their studies at distinguished graduate schools, including the University of Georgia, the Medical University of South Carolina, North Carolina State University, and The Ohio State University. “Research is a key component of the educational experience for undergraduate students majoring in the sciences,” said Flaherty, who holds a Ph.D. from Purdue University. “It builds a foundation for lifelong success, including graduate school and career.”

Volume 37, Number 4 w w

The Commentary of Coker College is published four times a year in the fall, winter, spring and summer by the Coker College Office of Marketing & Communications. 843.383.8018 Periodicals postage paid at West Columbia, SC 29272 USPS Pub. No. 599-590 POSTMASTER: Forward and send address changes to: COKER COLLEGE Office of Marketing & Communications 300 East College Avenue Hartsville, SC 29550-3797

>> J ames Jolly Director of Marketing and Communications >> K yle Saverance ’0 6 Web Developer and Publications Manager >> C hristian S try ker ’0 4 Sports Information Director >> C ontributors: Henna Koponen ’10 Jessica Welch ’10 Norah Wofford ‘11


campus campus

Coker College is pleased to announce that Dr. Joseph Flaherty, assistant professor of biology, has been awarded a $502,000 CAREER grant from the National Science Foundation. Dr. Flaherty directs student-centered research on the genetics of fungal diseases such as Fusarium head blight, which causes tremendous loss to the world’s food crops. This cutting-edge program uses innovative mentoring and learning techniques and collaboration with national research institutions.


By awarding him this grant, the National Science Foundation has recognized Dr. Flaherty as one of the nation’s leading teacher-scholars.


AL SCIENCE FOUNDATION GRANT The CAREER grant will enable Flaherty to establish extensive collaborations at researchintensive institutions such as Purdue, the University of Arkansas, North Carolina State University, Southern Illinois University, and Texas A&M University. These partnerships will further enhance the educational experiences for Coker College biology students while adding to the scientific community’s understanding of fungal diseases, including Fusarium head blight caused by Fusarium graminearum. A fungal plant pathogen, Fusarium graminearum is globally significant because it causes devastating diseases in cereal crops. In the past decade, Fusarium head blight has resulted in more than $3 billion of crop loss in the United States alone. “Fusarium species account for substantial crop loss around the world,” said Flaherty, “yet there is still a lot to learn about the biology of these important organisms.” Flaherty and his research team of Coker students

plan to discover and characterize fungal genes involved in growth and reproduction in hopes of providing future strategies to control high impact crop diseases. Achievement of Flaherty’s research goals will involve an innovative approach to mentoring undergraduate students as they work on independent projects. “Joe is a transformative professor who personifies the Coker College educational experience,” said Dr. Robert Wyatt, president of the college. “His classroom and lab work is benefitting students on an individual level while he’s also working for the greater good.” The National Science Foundation’s CAREER grants are extremely competitive and funded at a low rate. In addition to Coker College, other institutions that have recently received a CAREER grant include Duke University, Northwestern University, and Vanderbilt University.

>> DR . J O S E P H F L A H E R T Y

Faculty Member Since: 2005 Title: Assistant Professor of Biology and Chair of the Department of Science and Mathematics Education: B.S., M.S., North Carolina State University; Ph.D., Purdue University Areas of Expertise: Genetics and Molecular Biology

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>> C oker R ates Hi gh in N ational R ankin g s U.S. News & World Report and The Princeton Review continue to recognize the high quality of Coker College’s educational experience.

>> Gri gg s S teps d own A s At h letics Director Coker College Director of Athletics Tim Griggs is stepping down after 15 years as head of the Cobras athletic department. Griggs will continue to serve as an associate professor of physical education, returning to the classroom to teach fulltime in fall 2010. He began his career in Coker athletics in 1980 when he was named the first men’s soccer coach in the college’s history. “Tim has been an instrumental part of Coker athletics for three decades,” said Coker College President Dr. Robert Wyatt. “We are truly appreciative of his service to the college and to our many studentathletes over the years.” Among his accomplishments, Griggs helped transition Coker from the NAIA to NCAA Division II. He also helped create six athletic programs at the college: men’s and women’s cross country, competitive dance and cheerleading, junior varsity baseball and, most recently, women’s golf. During Griggs’ tenure several Coker teams earned national, regional and conference success. Two teams and two individual athletes advanced to the NCAA National Tournament, 21 teams advanced to the NCAA Regional Tournament, and 15 teams won conference championships. In 1988, while he was men’s soccer coach, Griggs added women’s soccer to his coaching responsibilities. He stepped down as men’s soccer coach in 1994 when he became athletic director and he fully retired from the coaching in 1998. Griggs completed his coaching career with records of 113-115-19 on the men’s side and 81-70-11 on the women’s side. Griggs was active in NCAA leadership. He served as a member of several NCAA committees, including the NCAA Division II Management Council, the NCAA Division II Identity Committee, and the NCAA Nominating Committee. He was also involved in the management of Conference Carolinas, previously the Carolinas-Virginia Athletics Conference. A native of Hartsville, Griggs has been instrumental in Coker’s involvement in the community, including the creation of Coker’s highly successful Taste of Coker. The NCAA Division II uses the Taste of Coker as a national example of a successful community engagement event. It is also a productive fundraiser for the Coker College Cobra Club. 4



In its 2010 college guide, U.S. News & World Report once again ranks Coker in the Top Tier of Best Baccalaureate Colleges — 15th out of 96 liberal arts colleges in the South. This is the 14th consecutive year that the national magazine has named Coker one of America’s Best Colleges. “Such a high ranking is an endorsement of Coker College’s personal approach to learning,” said Coker College president Dr. Robert Wyatt. “This type of national recognition is also good for our alumni and current students.” U.S. News & World Report ranks colleges using a number of criteria, including peer assessment, graduation rate and alumni giving. Coker College scores better than almost all of the 10 highest ranked colleges in the South for student-to-faculty ratio (10/1), percentage of classes under 20 students (78%) and percentage of full-time faculty (89%). The magazine defines a baccalaureate college as an institution that focuses on undergraduate education while offering a wide range of degree programs in the liberal arts as well as professional fields, such as

business and education. There are 319 colleges in this category ranked by region: North, South, Midwest and West. The Princeton Review, an education services company, has again selected Coker as one of the top institutions in the Southeast in its 2010 Best Colleges feature at This is the sixth consecutive year Coker has received the “Best in the Southeast” distinction. The Princeton Review selects its best colleges based on excellence of academic programs and the opinions of independent and high school college advisors. The firm also surveys students at each institution about their campus experiences and the quality of the living and learning environment.

>> C oker Helps C reate S tate S ocial W ork C onsortium Coker’s Department of Social Work has partnered with the South Carolina Department of Social Services (DSS) and six other colleges and universities in the state to create the South Carolina Professional Development Consortium. The consortium is working to increase the number of credentialed social workers in child protective services and foster care units across the state. “This is a win-win situation for DSS and our social work majors,” said Jeanne Cook, Coker College professor of social work. “A challenged state agency gets the assistance it needs to improve the quality of life for South Carolina families and Coker students get social work experience in the field.” As part of its state-wide efforts, the consortium has awarded two Coker College senior social work majors $15,000 each to complete internships for DSS. Gertrude Stoney [ left ] of Camden is working with foster care supervisors in Darlington County, and Sarah Gerrald [ right ] of Mullins is working with case managers in Marion County. The internships are for three semesters. The Consortium has also provided Coker College’s social work department with additional funding for program expenses, supplements for faculty, and the hiring of a new professor. That new position was filled by Dr. Elaine Townsend, visiting assistant professor of social work, this fall. Townsend has served as the program and clinical director at a child advocacy and assessment center in Jonesboro, Ga., and as a social worker at a psychiatric institute in Columbia, S.C. Townsend holds a Ph.D. in social work from the University of South Carolina. The South Carolina Professional Development Consortium is comprised of Coker College, the University of South Carolina, South Carolina State University, Winthrop University, Benedict College, Limestone College, and Columbia College.

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>> O  penin g C onvocation : Dr . R o bert W yatt Gives C onvocation A ddress At Opening Convocation in August, Dr. Robert Wyatt began his tenure as the College’s 16th president by challenging students to shape their own Coker experiences.

1. 0

>> W alter Geor g e 1.0: Walter George, executive vice president and

“What country do you want to visit? What research do you want to do? What job experience would you like? Where might you best practice the skills needed to be a leader? Devise a way that you can make a difference.”

chief operating officer of American Italian Pasta Company (AIPC), spoke to students in C. W. Coker Auditorium this fall. AIPC is North America’s largest producer of dry pasta and its clients include some of the largest food retailers in the world. George’s visit to campus was hosted by the Department of Business Administration.

He also reminded the College’s “outstanding and dedicated” faculty and staff to continue to lead by example and work closely with students to help them “be different in a way that really matters.”


>> R ecor d E nrollment 3.0: A record 291 new students arrived on campus this fall, including freshman Jordan Atkinson from Mayesville. New students came from 22 states and three foreign countries. 2.0

>> a funn y t h in g h appene d on t h e way to t h e forum

>> R etireD

2.0: Kyle Berry (Hero) and Dustin Moree (Pseudolos) in the Coker College Musical Theater production of

Dr. David Blackmon, Professor of Education, Director of Teacher Education, and Chair of the Department of Education, a member of the faculty since 2001.

“A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum” in November in Watson Theater. Set in ancient Rome, “Forum” is filled with comic situations, mistaken identity, witty dialog, funny songs and dancing girls. With music and lyrics by Stephen Sondheim, the Tony Award-winning play originally starred Zero Mostel in the early 1960s and later, in the 1990s, Nathan Lane. The Coker College production featured a cast of 13 Coker students and two Hartsville High School students. It was directed by Ken Stuart, assistant professor of theater, with musical direction by Graham Wood, associate professor of music. Set and lighting design was by David Dawson, assistant professor of theater, while Erin Leigh, assistant professor of dance, was choreographer.




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>> A lumni Dow dy an d S out h ar d Honore d 4.0: Coker College’s 2009 alumni award winners are a doctor and a university athletics director. The alumni received their awards at Coker’s Homecoming in October.


4 .1

Judy Southard [4.0], senior associate athletics director at Louisiana State University (LSU) in Baton Rouge, is the recipient of Coker College’s 2009 Alumni Distinguished Achievement Award. She is also senior woman administrator for LSU Athletics. Southard graduated from Coker in 1970 with a degree in physical education. Podiatrist Dr. Phillip R. Dowdy, Jr. [4.1] is Coker College’s 2009 Outstanding Young Alumni Award winner. He graduated from Coker in 1999 with a degree in chemistry and is currently practicing in Somerset, Ky. Dowdy specializes in foot and ankle surgery, foot and ankle sports medicine, and diabetic wound care. At LSU, Southard oversees the highly successful Tiger Olympic Sports program including 17 NCAA Division I men’s and women’s sports. She has direct supervision of volleyball, women’s basketball, softball, men’s and women’s swimming and diving, and men’s and women’s golf as well as responsibilities in monitoring the athletic department’s gender equity and diversity plan. Southard recently completed a productive tenure as a member of the NCAA Division I Women’s Basketball Committee, serving as committee chair from 200608. She also served as a member of the SEC Executive Committee from 2004-07. Before joining the LSU Athletics, Southard was the Director of Athletics at Texas Woman’s University. Prior to that, she was the head coach at the University of Tennessee- Martin. Earlier in her career, Southard was the head women’s basketball coach at Marshall University, leading the Lady Herd to five Southern Conference titles. Southard also served as the Assistant Director of Athletics, Senior Woman Administrator, and the Interim Director of Athletics at Marshall. A native of Columbia, S.C., Southard started her athletic career coaching the women’s West Florence (S.C.) High School basketball team following her graduation from Coker College. She earned a master’s degree in physical education from the University of Tennessee in 1978. Dowdy completed his residency in podiatric medicine and surgery at Henry Ford Wyandotte Hospital in Michigan. In addition to his work at the hospital, Dowdy routinely volunteered at a clinic for the working uninsured and provided free foot screenings at health fairs. The Henry Ford Hospital presented Dowdy with its Outstanding Humanitarian Service Award in 2006 for his dedication and commitment to his profession. He is a member of the American Podiatric Medical Association. Dowdy earned his doctorate of podiatric medicine from Barry University School of Graduate Medical Sciences in 2006. He is a native of Russell, Ky.

>> Gallo Awar de d Dance Grant


>> S prin g Dance C oncert 5.0: The annual fall dance concert in Watson Theater showcased student choreography including the senior thesis works by Corinne Sutton of Greenville and Jessica Welch of Cuyahoga Falls, Ohio. For her dance, Sutton drew inspiration from quotes by Maya Angelou and Isadora Duncan. Welch’s dance dealt with passing judgment on others without knowing anything about them.

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The Southern Arts Federation (SAF) has awarded Coker College dance professor Angela Gallo a $22,000 Dance Touring Initiative grant. The grant will allow Gallo to enhance Coker College’s dance major by developing a stronger presentation of dance concerts while building local audiences for modern dance and contemporary ballet. Over the next three-years, the SAF grant will provide Gallo with intensive professional development as well as peer mentorship and tour development assistance. It will also help pay for two high-caliber dance companies to come to Coker College for performances and workshops.




development development

On the

Road with Frank

Vis its with Coker Alumni and Friend s >> Frank Bush - Executive VP for Institutional Advancement

This edition of “Travels with Frank” is really about traveling with Dr. Robert Wyatt, Coker’s new President. It has been a real pleasure to get to know him and to introduce him to friends and alumni of the College. It has been a whirlwind tour, but a lot of fun! There is no doubt in my mind that the Trustees have chosen wisely — Robert is definitely the right man to lead Coker at this time in its history. He’s a smart, and even more importantly, a wise and fun man. Robert has a lot of energy which does bring up one problem, though: I have to remind him constantly he is 47 and I am 65! From the time he got here, Robert wanted to make it a priority to meet Trustees so our first trip was to Florence to have lunch with Tom Ewart and Trip DuBard. Tom is a banker in Florence and this is his second term on the Board. His daughter is Tiffany Ewart McKee ’01 who is married to Ben McKee ‘02. Tom has been a big supporter of the College for a long time. Trip is an ardent supporter of education and has been a key leader in the formation of The School Foundation, which supports Florence District 1, and the Eastern Carolina Community Foundation Our first personal visit was with long-time supporters and friends of the College, Jane and Kirk Dunlap. Jane and Kirk and their family have a long history with Coker College. They have been instrumental in starting and supporting an endowed scholarship at the College, the Katherine and Charles K. Dunlap Endowed Scholarship, and have recently given support to the Library-Information Technology Center by naming a room for Jane’s parents, Pressly and Kathleen Coker. Jane and Kirk have moved from Hartsville to the Presbyterian Community in Florence, but still remain actively involved in the life of the College and the town. Two finer people would be hard to find. We were able to schedule a lunch at the Hartsville Country Club with Harry Moran and Howard Tucker. Harry is a retired Sonoco executive, serves on the Board of Trustees, and was a member of the Presidential Search Committee that brought Robert to Coker. He is taking an active role now in the College’s new Strategic Plan. 8



Howard, a retired optometrist in Hartsville, formerly chaired the Board of Trustees. He and his wife, Donna, have been very supportive of the College over the years and have endowed two scholarships at the College, The Howard and Donna Tucker Endowed Scholarship and The Howard Tucker Tree Endowment . That same day we had a wonderful visit with two of my very favorite people, Sloan Hungerpiller Brittain ’43 and her husband Deward (Britt) Brittain, in their home in Hartsville. The Hungerpillers, Sloan’s family, have been associated with the College for generations and many years ago established The John C. and Leland Segars Hungerpiller Memorial Scholarship, and more recently Sloan and Britt endowed The Sloan Hungerpiller Brittain Endowed Music Scholarship. Britt served on the Board of Trustees during difficult times in the history of the College and gave us great leadership during that period. We had a delightful visit with them. As I said earlier, one of Robert’s wishes was to meet many of the Trustees, so the next day we went to Darlington to meet with new Trustee Toy Nettles, President and CEO of Pee Dee Electric Cooperative. Toy and his wife, Jennifer, live in Lake City. We are very excited to have Toy on our Board of Trustees. He brings a lot of energy and a lot of new ideas to the College. Those of you who read “Travels With Frank” may remember that each year I am invited to Blowing Rock, NC, by Jean and Jim Fort, great friends of the College, to stay in their beautiful home and visit with other Coker graduates and friends of the College who summer in that area. It is always one of the highlights of my year. It was especially so this year because it gave these folks a chance to get to know Robert. Jean and Jim had a delightful party. In attendance were Claire Redman McGee ’55 and Jim McGee from Hartsville, Louise Coker Ewing from San Miguel, Mexico (whose family home is Drengaelen which now houses the Development and Alumni offices), and Nan and Edgar Lawton from Hartsville. Both Edgar Lawton and Jim Fort have chaired the Board of Trustees and Nan has been very active in Kalmia Gardens. The Fort’s daughters, Gay Fort Boswell and Claudia Fort Heath, along with Claudia’s daughter, Jean Prentice, and Jeanette and John Alexander joined us. Soon after having a delightful breakfast with Gay Boswell in her beautiful home in Blowing Rock, we left the mountains to have lunch in Charlotte with Trustee Jane Parler Norwood ’65 and her husband, Buddy. Since

Jane was a member of the Presidential Search Committee, she had already met Robert, but this gave her an opportunity for a long talk and the chance for him to meet Buddy, who is also an ardent Coker supporter. Two days later Robert and I toured Sonoco in Hartsville. It was an interesting tour that gave Robert deeper knowledge of the global company that has played a such a crucial and important role in Coker’s success through major financial support and advice. After the tour, Harris DeLoach, Sonoco President and CEO, hosted us for lunch with Trustees Howard Coker, Charlie Hupfer and Charles Sullivan. As the recent past Chairman of the Board of Trustees, Charles was very instrumental in bringing Robert to Coker. Later in the week, Trustee Pete Mazzaroni, Manager of Community Affairs for Roche-Carolina, arranged for us to tour the pharmaceutical company in Florence. Roche-Carolina has been supportive of the College through gifts and internships. After the tour, Pete introduced us to Dr. Hans Groeger, the firm’s president. We had a very interesting discussion about their company and the role it plays in the Pee Dee, the United States and the world. It is our hope to get Dr. Groeger over to Coker to speak with our students sometime soon. We did not get a chance to make many visits in August because we were all involved in the opening of school, however we did have time to schedule two wonderful lunches. In mid-August, we had lunch with Joan and Charlie Coker in their beautiful Hartsville home. Both Joan and Charlie have played an important role in the life of Coker College and it gave us great pleasure to name our new LibraryInformation Technology Center in their honor. We had a delightful lunch on their porch with great conversation and great food. A few days later we met Trustee Goz Segars and his wife, Pat Ramsdell Segars ‘81, owners of Segars Realty and Development, at Bizzell’s for lunch. Goz is Vice-Chair of the Board of Trustees. Both Pat and Goz have served the College in many capacities and have been loyal and life-time supporters. Pat has been a Trustee and has served

[ left to ri g h t ]

Frank Bush, Robert Wyatt, Betty Jo Nichols, Nancy Wyatt, Sarah Timmons at the Hartsville Party.




as President of the Alumni Association. In early September, I had an enjoyable visit with Ruth Ludlam McClam ’46 and Marvin McClam in Raleigh. Ruth and her family have been connected with the College for many generations. Ruth has endowed the Ruth Ludlam McClam ’46 Endowed Scholarship and we have been working out the specifics of the endowment. I have really grown close to Ruth and her family. The next week we began our month-long parties for Robert. It would be almost impossible

Columbia hosts Hoyt Kelley ’96, Tina Weeks Weaver ’91, Anne Lamb Matthews ’64, Karen Lear ‘EV98, and Robert Wyatt. [ left to ri g h t ]

for me to name everyone who attended the parties, but Robert and I want to thank everyone who came and to say what a pleasure it was for him to meet everyone. Our first party was a lovely reception on a beautiful Sunday afternoon in August at Drengaelen for Nancy and Robert and their daughter, Lara, to meet Hartsville friends and alumni. A few days later, we had a large party at the Florence Country Club hosted by Rona and Tom Ewart and Jean and Frank Avent. The Columbia party was held at the Blue Marlin Restaurant in the Vista and was the perfect location for a large gathering. We had a fun group of Coker alumni and friends of the College attend. Three days later we headed down to Lake City where we had a small, but ardent group of Coker College supporters hosted by Beth DuBose Cottingham ’53/’55 and her husband, Walter, at Brown’s Barbeque. It was wonderful to see Beth and Walter was able to join us although he had recently had surgery. We were also pleased to have Trustee Dean Legge ’99 attend. Later that day we headed to Myrtle Beach and had a beautiful, cocktail buffet at the Dunes Club in Myrtle Beach hosted by Emma Ann Lawton Benton ’56 and Jimmy Benton. Toward the end of the month, Robert and I flew to New York arriving in time to meet Trustee Jim Linville and his brother Jack, in Jack’s apartment at Central Park West. Jack and Jim have both been W W W. C OK E R .E D U /D E V E L OPM ENT

fast and long time friends of the College and have followed their mother’s, Susanne Gay Linville, and great-grandfather’s, Major James Lide Coker, traditions of giving leadership and financial support to the College. After a nice visit, we walked to an area restaurant to continue our conversation and have an enjoyable meal. The next day, we attended a luncheon at the Cosmopolitan Club hosted by Penelope Coker Hall. We had 18 people which included a mix of both young, successful Coker graduates, those who have supported Coker over the years, and a prospective student and her mother. It was wonderful food and a delightful time. I was shocked and so pleased when Peggy Brown Buchanan ’62 from South Carolina showed up with New York alumna Gabby Morandiere ’62! A week later, we were in Charlotte for a party hosted by Jane Parler Norwood ’65 and Buddy Norwood and Gay Fort Boswell at Rooster’s Wood-Fired Kitchen. We had a great group of people there: a mix of alumni, friends of the College and parents. Thanks Jane, Buddy and Gay for hosting the party. In early October, I attended the funeral of Finley Plunkett Lucas ’39. She was what I consider one of the most beautiful and sophisticated Southern women who ever attended Coker. As most of the early alumni know, Finley worked at the College for a while and helped recruit and mother many students during her time. I had the privilege of having lunch with her family at their beautiful family home in Florence. We will all miss Finley. The next week, Robert and I headed down to Sea Island, Ga., to have lunch with Betty Wray McDonald Jones ’52, Tiggie Hooks Benefield ’52, and Dewey Benefield and Martha Little Hunter ’54 at the Cloister’s Beach Club. For sure, all of you know that I make an annual trip to visit with Betty Wray, Tiggie and Martha and this was a delightful visit. No three graduates have cared more for Coker and they have all supported the College over the years. I want to thank Betty Wray for hosting us for lunch overlooking the ocean. Robert was a huge hit. I also have to thank Betty Wray personally and in print for always having coconut cream pie for me

Myrtle Beach party hosts Emma Ann Lawton Benton ‘56 and Jimmy Benton with Robert Wyatt.

when I am there. It is just delicious! The next time you are in the area, go and see if you can find some of that pie. You won’t regret it! Our last party was an Oyster Roast and Barbeque at The Beach House at Wild Dunes in Charleston at the end of October. We had a huge group of people hosted by Martha Langford Derrick ’56 and Fletcher Derrick, Eliza Ingle, Courtney Smith ‘03, and Joanne Moody Zobel ’49 and Bud Zobel. In early November I had a wonderful visit with Judith Hege Bailey ‘68 and Brendon (Bren) Bailey in Clemmons, NC. Judy is a remarkable lady and has many accomplishments, including serving as President of Western Michigan University. It was a great evening with delightful people and I am so glad that Judy and Bren are close by. She loves the College dearly. Bren prepared our meal and is quite a chef. If any of you are ever near Clemmons, talk them into supper because you won’t regret it. It has been a delightful and exciting five months traveling with Robert. Those of you who have not met him or Nancy, please stop by campus to see them at any time. By the way, don’t forget to send your gift to the Annual Scholarship Fund. It is the best way to support Coker and to help the College recruit and retain students.

[ left to ri g h t ]

Trustee Eliza Ingle, Ann Boatwright Igoe ‘57, Frank Bush, and David Ingle at the Charleston Party.




development development

>> M emorial g ifts From September 1, 20 0 9 through October 31, 20 0 9 Coker has received gifts in memor y of the following:

Thomas Herbert Alexander Betty Jean Lee Hunsinger Shirley Caldwell Becken Scott Becken Ella Earle Benson John Floyd and Toni Holman

>> Bus h T o R etire in 2 0 11 Frank Bush, executive vice president for institutional advancement, is retiring in January 2011 after more than 35 years of service to the College. For 30 years, Bush has been Coker College’s chief fundraiser and a key member of the College’s leadership team. “Frank’s positive impact on the growth and success of Coker College over the past three decades is immeasurable,” said Charles W. Coker, great grandson of college founder Major James Lide Coker. “His dedication to the College, his success in the development area, and the friendships he has forged over the years are a legacy that is unmatched. We shall all miss his many contributions!” Bush came to Coker College in 1975 as Director of Admissions. In 1979, he established the Office of Development with the responsibility of raising funds for the College’s facilities, academic programs and scholarship fund. In 1988, Bush was named Vice President of Institutional Advancement with oversight of the development, alumni relations and public relations functions of the College. In 1995, Bush was appointed Executive Vice President for Institutional Advancement. Over the course of his career at Coker, Bush has raised approximately $80 million for the College, including capital campaigns and annual scholarship funds. Just some of his achievements include the funding of campus facilities such as the Gladys C. Fort Art Building, opened in 1983, the Elizabeth Boatwright Coker Performing Arts Center, opened in 1997, and the Charles W. and Joan S. Coker LibraryInformation Technology Center, opened in 2008. “Without question Frank’s visionary leadership has been vital to Coker College’s success,” said college president Dr. Robert Wyatt. “His commitment to Coker is inspirational and we plan to honor Frank in the year ahead as we proceed with this significant transition.” The search to find Coker’s next vice president for institutional advancement is underway. The successful candidate will work with Bush until he retires. Dr. William Carswell, associate professor of music, is chairing the search committee. It includes Emerson Gower, former chairman of the board of Trustees, Lyn Blackmon, director of alumni relations, Mary Ridgeway, director of Kalmia Gardens, Christian Stryker, sports information director, and Michele South, administrative assistant for campus services. Faculty members on the search committee are Dr. Kevin Kenyon, associate professor of history, Dr. Glenn Chappell, associate professor of business administration, Dr. Sara Odom, professor of education, and Angela Gallo, assistant professor of dance. The firm of Coleman Lew & Associates of Charlotte, NC is assisting in the search.




Bob Chambless J. Lamar Caldwell, Jr. Walter and Beth DuBose Cottingham Jamie Clapham Pat Chapman Huff Sara Frances Coleman Cottingham Frances Worley Bond Jean Lamond Crabbe Charlie Hunt Chewning Joyce Crowe Pat Chapman Huff Johnnie Dawkins Elizabeth Brown Glenn Marvin Shirley Diggs Brian and Martha Ann Anderson Blackwell Hartsville Music Study Club Drs. George and Gayle Buckheister Sawyer Beverly Denny Dority Frances Worley Bond Dr. Luke L. Erwin Jo Simmons Aiken Ruth Gardner Pat Chapman Huff Wade Godbold, Jr. Pat Chapman Huff Barbara Bailey Goodson Frank and Rebecca Howle Benson C. Nevin Betts Don C. Bigby Charlie and Joan Coker Bob and Betty Corning Drs. Richard and Gail Culyer Emmett and Virginia Davis Rion and Ann Dixon Kirk and Jane Dunlap Wade and Lee Hicks Jim and Cathy Hines Gus and Joan Snoddy Hoffmeyer Charles and Frances Hupfer Tracy Key, Jr. Selma Stogner LeHardy Palmetto Brick Jacqueline J. Segars Liz Segars Clyde and Mary Catherine Stuckey Thurston and Margie Connell Stuckey George and Denise Norris Walden

Carolyn C. West Budgy and Nancy Wilhelm Jack Harper Dorothy Hayes Branham Shelton Hays Martha Jo Hays Garrell Carl H. Huff Sarah Sampson Bell Frances Worley Bond Frank and Frankie Bush J. Lamar and Lucy Singletary Caldwell Charlie Hunt Chewning Walter and Beth DuBose Cottingham Andy and Vicki Eaddy Constance Gardner Gandy Mark and Christie Happ Susie Gaines Hautala Frank and Elaine Johnson Hays Margaret Hewitt Hoffmeyer Pat Chapman Huff Betty Jean Lee Hunsinger Budd and Mitzi DuPre Matthews Jean Fore McDaniel William and Olive Timberlake Finley Plunkett Lucas Andy and Vicki Eaddy Margaret Hewitt Hoffmeyer Caroline James Selma Stogner LeHardy Anne Bethea Powell Keith and Caroline Williamson W. Cannon Matthews Budd and Mitzi DuPre Matthews Dr. Clyde McCarver Andy and Vicki Eaddy Pat Chapman Huff Harry McDonald Frank and Frankie Bush Bud and Joanne Moody Zobel Anne Merck McDowell Frances Worley Bond Jennie Smith McLeod Frances Nicholson Townsend John A. Pruitt Budd and Mitzi DuPre Matthews Shirley Lawhon Rhem Elizabeth Degenhardt Campanile Margaret Atkins Saffold Charlena H. Chewning Pat Chapman Huff Betty Jean Lee Hunsinger Margaret Catoe Saleeby Gus and Joan Snoddy Hoffmeyer Patricia Segars Thompson Louetta Coker Strickland Dr. Elsie Coker Ameen Mary Charlene Turner Professor Dick Puffer




>> Honor g ifts From September 1, 20 0 9 through October 31, 20 0 9 Coker has received gifts in honor of the following:

David Allen Andy and Vicki Eaddy Class of 1968 Ellen Tollison Hayden

>> Gifts of Books / M e d ia to t h e L i b rar y Gifts of Books/ Media to the Charles W. and Joan S. Coker Librar y- Information Technology Center from September 1, 20 0 9 through October 31, 20 0 9

Rev. Drs. Ben and Dora Gafford Pat Chapman Huff Tommy Graham Pat Chapman Huff Roy and Kathrine Jewel Mildred Burno Jerry Josey Henry C. Alewine II Phil and Trish Lunn Pat Chapman Huff David and Wendy McCracken Dr. Cathleen Cuppett Shirley Norris Dr. Cathleen Cuppett

>> contri b utions to sc h olars h ips From September 1, 20 0 9 through October 31, 20 0 9 Coker has received the following gifts for scholarships:

Class of 1953 Endowed Scholarship Charlie Hunt Chewning James and Sarah Sampson Bell Susie Gaines Hautala

Jennie Smith McLeod ‘52 Endowed Scholarship Frances Nicholson Townsend John C. and Leland S. Hungerpiller Memorial Scholarship Britt and Sloan Hungerpiller Brittain

Leona Davis Perry Endowed Scholarship Priscilla Perry Arnold

Rev. and Mrs. Phil Thrailkill Pat Chapman Huff

Malcolm and Jacqueline E. McLeod Doubles Endowed Scholarship John and Betty Beasley Williams Marvis Wiggins Henry Endowed Scholarship Marvis Wiggins Henry Mary Elizabeth DuBose Cottingham Endowed Scholarship Beth DuBose Cottingham

Information received September 9, 20 0 9 through November 2, 20 0 9

Charlotte Ryan Stuckey ’38 Finley Plunkett Stith Lucas ’39 Dorothy Funderburk Primavera ’41 Isabel Hinson Adams ’43 Rhoda Leigh Hope Sherrill Vail ’50 Carl H. Huff ’52 Margaret Atkins Saffold ’53 Betty Sue Chaney Garceau ’60 Emmie Chapman Griggs ’60 Helen Brooks Campbell ’79


Nickey Brumbaugh Endowed Art Scholarship Betty J. Robertson Coughlin Sloan H. Brittain Endowed Music Scholarship Britt and Sloan Hungerpiller Brittain Sparrow Scholars Program Susan Melody Frank

Angelyn McCarver Bateman ’68 in the death of her father Clyde McCarver on September 29. 2009.

Brandeis Kelley Fennell ’92 in the death of her father Jackie Jackson on October 11, 2009.

>> W E DD I N G S Information received September 9, 20 0 9 through November 2, 20 0 9

Congratulations to Bryan S. Kaye ’00 and Kelli Morganti on their marriage on October 10, 2009. Congratulations to Shannon Crouch ’09 and TC Bowers on their marriage on September 12, 2009. SEND US A WEDDING PHOTO OF THE BRIDE AND GROOM WITH ALL YOUR COKER GUESTS!

>> Birt h s Information received September 9, 20 0 9 through November 2, 20 0 9

Nancy Barrineau Endowed Scholarship Nan Carter Howard Teressa Thompson Harrington

>> I N memoriam

Rosalind Carrigan Hearon ’62 in the death of her mother Mildred Carrigan on October 27, 2009.

Andrew Gardner ’80 and Diana Lee Gardner ’73 in the death of his mother Ruth Gardner on November 2, 2009.

Florence H. Steele Endowed Scholarship Florence Houck Steele

Denise Sweitzer Pat Chapman Huff

Patricia Beachum Young Elizabeth Degenhardt Campanile

Helen Kolb Chambless ’58 in the death of her husband Bob Chambless on September 19, 2009.

Charlotte Hamer Moulton ’68 in the death of her daughter Laura Camlin Moulton on October 1, 2009.

C. E. Spires Carolyn Spires Dixon

Dr. Robert Wyatt Lillian Utsey Harder

Clyde Gardner ’53 in the death of his wife Ruth Gardner on November 2, 2009.

Mary Kay Rickenbaker ’57 in the death of her grandson on September 1, 2009.

Katherine and Charles Kirkland Dunlap Endowed Scholarship Kirk and Jane Dunlap

Margaret Vance Pat Chapman Huff

Information received September 9, 20 0 9 through November 2, 20 0 9

Pat Chapman Huff ’53 in the death of her husband Carl Huff ’52 on September 17, 2009.

Gayle Douglas Kayla Grantham Jean Grosser

Walter and Beth DuBose Cottingham Barbara Nexsen Lansche Dr. and Mrs. Malcolm C. Doubles Dr. and Mrs. John “Mac” Williams

>> s y mpat h y

Congratulations to Angel Campos Bell ’04 and Brantley Bell ’07 on the birth of their daughter Aidynn Olivia Bell on June 6, 2009. Congratulations to Nick Pierce ’09 on the birth of his nephew Christopher Tyler Pierce on October 13, 2009. SEND US BIRTH ANNOUNCEMENTS ABOUT YOUR CHILDREN OR GRANDCHILDREN!




development development

>> Gifts 

given to K almia Gar dens [ A u g ust 12 , 2 0 0 9 – N ovem b er 4 , 2 0 0 9 ]

>> M emorials Dr. Robert G. Askins Mr. and Mrs. Bob Brannon Andy Augustine Dr. and Mrs. C. Brooks Bannister Cathy Bouknight Michelle Maloney Joby Bristow Mr. and Mrs. Bob Brannon David and Patsy Cannon Charles and Adrienne Rogers James W. Dunn Bobb E. Riggs Mr. and Mrs. William H. Farless, Jr. Mr. and Mrs. Jim Bowen Barbara Bailey Goodson Dr. and Mrs. C. Brooks Bannister Carolyn Hubbard Mr. and Mrs. Bob Brannon Erma McDonald Charles H. Rogers Harry McDonald Dr. and Mrs. C. Brooks Bannister Family

>> Honorariums

Bob and Betty Corning Rachel Flowers Dr. and Mrs. J. H. Puyet

Class of ‘72 Dr. and Mrs. James Lemke

John H. Newsome, Sr. Brenda Newsome

Brianna Bunce Douglas Dr. and Mrs. James Lemke

Paul Parris Mr. and Mrs. David Allen

Vicki Eaddy Dr. and Mrs. James Lemke

James Patterson Charles and Adrienne Rogers

Marsha Eide Dr. and Mrs. James Lemke

Mary Charline Turner Dr. Tracey Welborn

Sebastian Jolly Harriett Lemke Bill and Mary Joslin Ben and Anne Williamson

>> Donations

Nan D. Lawton Ed and Tru Lawton


Merle Davis Baxley Brown-Pennington-Atkins Annie Rue Denny Mary Esther Denny Andy and Vicki Eaddy Mr. and Mrs. David T. Holt Marilyn Lesser Eric and Amanda Thompsen John and Judy Johnson Walker Ann Wise Bud and Joanne Moody Zobel

Dr. Pat Lincoln Dr. and Mrs. James Lemke Pam Newsome Olivia “Chipsie” Doughty Holly Prescott Dr. and Mrs. James Lemke Jennifer Rhodes Dr. and Mrs. James Lemke

Gi v e to Cok er’s A n nua l Schol a r ship Fu nd • T  he

Annual Scholarship Fund is Coker College’s yearly campaign to raise financial support for its students.

• E  very • T  he

gift to the fund helps new and returning students attend Coker.

goal for the fund in 2009-2010 is $500,000.

• G  ifts

to the fund are tax deductible.

• A  lumni

gifts to the fund positively influence Coker College’s national ranking.

Gi v e online at w w w.cok It’s Safe. It’s Simple.

Y our o u r contact c o n t a c t for f o r the t h e A nnual nnual Sc cholarship holarship Fu und n d iis s D iirector rector o of f An nnual n u a l G iiving ving

Wes Daniels ’03 — wdaniels @coke or 84 3.38 3.8178







>> C olle g e F rien d R o bert Bell Passe d Away Distinguished lawyer and longtime friend of the College Robert Morrall Bell passed away in August at the age of 73 at his home in Aiken. Robert was married to Cecelia Richardson Coker ’65 until her untimely death in late 1965. Cecelia was the daughter of Robert R. and Lois W. Coker and the great granddaughter of Major James Lide Coker, founder of the College. Robert Bell had served as Aiken County attorney for 25 years. He had also worked with several prominent law firms throughout his career and he owned a private practice in Graniteville from 2004-2007. Among his varied and diverse civic service, Bell was a member of the S.C. Highway Commission, which honored him by naming a portion of Road 118 in Aiken the Robert M. Bell Parkway. In 2008, Robert Bell established a charitable annuity trust that has now created the Cecelia Coker Bell Endowed Scholarship in Art. The College’s art gallery is also named in Cecelia’s honor.

>> Harrison  E n dowe d S c h olars h ip E sta blish e d A $180,000 gift from the Estate of Theodore S. Harrison, Sr. of Summerville has established an endowed scholarship the College in honor of his deceased wife, Eleanor Fogle Harrison ’45. The Eleanor Fogle Harrison Endowed Scholarship is to be awarded annually to a full-time student showing financial need who maintains at least a “C” average. The amount of the award will be five percent of the fund’s corpus. Eleanor Harrison earned a degree in English from Coker.

may 11-16, 2010

$1950 per person double Occupancy

Give Online at



ENTHUSIASM. It’s part tradition, part pride and part enthusiasm. It’s studentathletes giving their maximum effort and fans rallying behind them. The excitement is contagious.

***s”Thesloyaltys lastssaslifetime.” You can demonstrate this spirit by joining the Cobra Club today.

Thank you

Cobra fans for all of your support!

For more information: 843-383-8178 or


Coker Celebrates - Santa Fe in May Join us as we spend a week exploring the “City Different” with its rich heritage of history, art and culture. For More Information: 1.800.65.COKER or 843.383.8016 | Mail: Coker College Alumni Office 300 East College Avenue, Hartsville, SC 29550


GALA & AUCTION March 13, 2010

Prestwood Country Club - - - 5:30p.m. Cocktails, Dinner, Guest Speaker, and Auction The auction will feature a wide selection of premium items. For more information: 843-383-8178 or




athletics athletics

C o b r a s /



M e n ’ s 2



S o cc e r 9




Conference Carolinas

Ch a m pions >> V  ictor y: A n E n g lis h man in Hartsville In only his first season as head coach, Paul Leese has established a formidable reputation as the leader of the Coker College men’s soccer team. Inheriting a team that finished the 2008 season 7-12-1 and 9th in the conference, Leese delivered the first winning season in over 20 years along with the first ever Conference Carolinas Championship in Coker men’s soccer history. “It was a great achievement!” said Leese, a native of Liverpool, England. “I was very pleased with how all the players responded to my expectations as a new coach. We set our standards high and were able to succeed due to the hard work that every player gave from the first day of pre-season until the last kick of the conference championship.” Many more records were broken in Leese’s inaugural season, including best start in program history (7-0); highest Regional ranking (#3 in Southeast); first ever National ranking (#21 in Nation); most wins in a season (12); first ever Conference Tournament win (2-1 over nationally ranked #13 Anderson University); and first ever conference semifinal win (1-0 over nationally ranked #1 Lees McRae). Leese was then able to cap off the season with Coker’s first ever conference championship; defeating Belmont Abbey at home in a thrilling 6-5 shootout win. A major part of Coker’s success is derived from Leese’s soccer philosophy. “Soccer is truly a team sport that relies on the actions and decisions of the players during the game,” explains Leese. “As coach, I cannot call timeouts or dictate intricate plays – I can only teach players how to read the game and make their own decisions. All our work is done on the training pitch – the game is where the boys now have the freedom to express themselves.”


this season. It was exciting to watch how we improved and grew together with each game.” Leese has always impressed those who have worked with him. As assistant coach at Coastal Carolina University from 2006-09, Leese was in charge of all phases of the men’s soccer program. Coastal Head Coach and Region III Olympic Development Program Director Shaun Docking recruited Leese as both a player and coach. “Paul was a leader as a player and the transition to becoming a coach has been a very natural one,” said Docking. “He understands the demands of student-athlete’s in college and does a tremendous job of developing not only good soccer players but also mature young men.” Prior to working at Coastal Carolina, Leese served as an assistant coach at Furman University where he coached U.S. National Team member and Fulham F.C. (UK) player Clint Dempsey, along with current MLS players Jon Leathers of the Kansas City Wizards and Shea Salinas of the San Jose Earthquakes.

In addition to the accomplishments Coker earned as a team, several Cobras received individual honors. Marc Mergena, Eric Stiefield, Daniel Shrizad and James Sweeney were named All-Conference and Mergena,

Leese’s players agree.

Ben Beetch, Tyler Senecal, Noah

“This is the strongest team I have been a part of here at Coker,” said senior captain Mike Crook of Bradenton, Fla. “Coach values every player’s opinion and helped us focus on our team goals

Lascell and AJ Sweeney were named








Sweeney was named Tournament MVP.

>> C o bras A dd W omen ’s Golf Coker is adding women’s golf to its NCAA Divison II sports starting in fall 2010. Head men’s golf coach Tommy Baker will assume the additional coaching duties for the Lady Cobras golf team. The first member of the women’s golf team is Natalie Falco of Stoughton, Ma. A four-year letter winner and team captain at Fontbonne Academy, Falco was the winner of the Brockton City Open, the Fall River Classic and the NEPGA Junior Shootout. “The signing of Natalie is a historic moment for both the Lady Cobra golf program and Coker College,” said Baker. “She is a great young woman from a great family. Her ability to be a talented golfer and her academic prowess will open many doors for her in the future.” The addition of the women’s golf program will give Coker 13 NCAA Division II sports next year. Coker becomes the ninth Conference Carolinas member to add women’s golf.

>> F ormer N B A P lay er J oins C oker S taff Former NBA player and scout Dennis Nutt has joined Coker College Athletics as a fundraising consultant and assistant men’s basketball coach. Nutt played professional basketball from 19861990 with the Dallas Mavericks and in the European Basketball Association and the Continental Basketball Association. Most recently, he was a college scout for the NBA’s Charlotte Bobcats and assistant men’s basketball coach at Coastal Carolina University. A graduate of Texas Christian University (TCU), Nutt played four years of basketball for the Horned Frogs. His assistant coach was Dan Schmotzer, Coker’s head men’s basketball coach. A native of Little Rock, Ark., Nutt is the youngest of four brothers with successful coaching careers: Houston Nutt is the head football coach at the University of Mississippi, Dickey Nutt is the head men’s basketball coach at Southeastern Missouri State University, and Danny Nutt is the Assistant Athletics Director for Player Development at the University of Mississippi.

W W W. C O K ER C O B R A S . C O M

athletics athletics

1. 0


>> W  omen ’s T ennis 1.0: Cobra women’s tennis players Alyssa Blanchard [1.1] (Columbia) and Rachel Lemar [1.0] (London, England) captured Coker’s first ever Conference Carolinas Individual Tennis Championships in September. The pair was the No. 1 seed in the tournament and won three straight matches to take the title. They won with scores of 8-1, 8-4 and an 8-2 win over the No. 3 seed Erskine College in the championship match. The championship marks the first Conference Carolinas Individual Championship that anyone at Coker, singles or doubles, has won. “This was a great tournament for our women,” said Head Coach Alvin Cheng. “They played very well and it was really exciting to have Blanchard and Lemar win the first ever individual championship at Coker.”

>> 4 t h A nnual Taste of C oker The Coker College Athletic Department and the Cobra Club hosted the 4th Annual Taste of Coker in September setting an attendance record of more than 800 people. Forty-five local chefs prepared various dishes, while members of the Greater Hartsville and Coker College communities came together for a night of food, fun and entertainment. Taste of Coker 2009 raised more than $9,000 for the Cobra Club. The College donated more than $500 in tickets to local families in need, allowing them to come enjoy the great food and fun.





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[Winter 09] Commentary  

Campus Issue Vol. 37- Dr. joseph Flaherty receives national science grant, men's soccer clinches their first conference title in school hist...

[Winter 09] Commentary  

Campus Issue Vol. 37- Dr. joseph Flaherty receives national science grant, men's soccer clinches their first conference title in school hist...