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Letter from the President Commencement Jack Early returns to Union Homecoming 2014 Celebrating Edna Mann Ken and Sarah Ramsey's   commitment to Union Academics Redbud rebrands Class notes

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Letter from the



  The energy on campus is invigorating! After a year of planning and discussing and meeting, we have a game plan and a focus. Enrollment is up, retention is up, and we, as a campus community, have a renewed sense of purpose and identity. With strong staff, faculty and student support, our Board of Trustees has adopted a Strategic Plan and Quality Enhancement Plan to take us into the future.   We see our future rooted deeply in our surrounding communities, and attracting the brightest and the best to our historic campus. We see our future hand-in-hand with yours – our alumni, students, and friends.   Our experience runs contrary to much of what we hear from the higher education field. The high cost of a college degree, the student debt load upon graduation, the number of years it takes to graduate, whether or not a student is employed upon graduation in his or her field of study, how much that student makes in the first few years after graduation – all these issues tempt us to describe Union College by first stating what we’re not.   Union – not the one in upstate New York – is a four-year, private, liberal arts institution. We are not an elite private college with a huge price tag, big endowment and wellpaid faculty and staff. We are located in Barbourville, Kentucky – not Bourbon and

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Horse country, but, rather, one of the most economically distressed counties in the nation, and one of President Obama’s first designated “promise zones.”  We are Union. We are personal, affordable, and dedicated to the success of our students. Our vibrant campus culture respects the individual, encourages teamwork, and expects excellence. We promote each other’s intellectual enrichment, health, and spiritual well-being and we are committed to the economic growth and health of our Appalachian region.   Union College was the first college in the beautiful Appalachian Mountains of Kentucky. We love our mountains. The environment and geography and history of southeastern Kentucky are woven into the fabric of our academic programming. Our alumni are recognized contributors to the

wellbeing of the individual, the economy, and the environment both locally and globally.   We are Union. We are a small, private, liberal arts college in an age when being a small, private, liberal arts college is not easy. In fact, it is suspect. The myths about colleges like Union never seem to change. Too expensive, elitist, and irrelevant? Not us.   We are Union. And our future is bright!

Marcia Hawkins, Ph.D. President, Union College

Early morning walk at the Ramsey farm. See story pg. 16

Designer Gabrielle Kelly, ‘13

Alumni Association Officers President John Dodd, '89


Doug Logan, '68


Liannie Brock Parahoo, '01


Chuck Conley, '64



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Jack Downey, '66


Jim Habercam, '72

Class of 2014

Nell Westbrook, '64 Austin Maples, '11 Ashley Wilson, '10 MA '13 Billy Hensley, '98 MA '01 Bruce Roberts, '61 Allison Fowler, '08

Class of 2015

Carol Meibers, '71 Marcus Roland, '88 Charles Frazier, '76, MA '80 Ruth Wooten-Kee, '96 Eddie Campbell, '96, MA '01 Penny Mills, '00 Jessica Luebbe Seitz, '97 Kim Sell McGraner, '02 Jeff Frost, '97 Kim Mills '98 Tom Posey 91, MA '02

Class of 2016

Robert (Bob) Brown, ‘63 Jeff Canady, '90 David Gross, '91 Bridgett Hastings, '92, MA '02 August Mangeney, '07 Phillip Russell, '02, MA '12 Scott Russell, '97, MA '07 Danny Strunk, '64 Christie Yercine, MA '04

VP for Advancement

Jessica Terry Bergman, '98

CONGRATULATIONS TO THIS YEAR’S ALUMNI ASSOCIATION AWARD WINNERS Rising Star: Erin Satterlee, ‘07 Business & Professional Hall of Fame: Jack Downey, ‘66 Educators Hall of Fame: Dora Sue Oxendine Farmer, ’66, ’83 MA Distinguished Service Award: Marshall Rasnake

WE WANT TO HEAR FROM YOU! Write to: Union College Union Magazine 310 College Street, Box 14 Barbourville, KY 40906

E-mail the editor at:

Letters may be edited for length and clarity, and must include author’s name and contact information for verification purposes.

Editor Jay Stancil, MA ‘11 Robyn Davis Sekula Photography Denise Hoover Missy Reid, ‘91 Robyn Davis Sekula Jessica Frisby, ‘16 Krystal Jones Daniel Sigal Contributors Jessica Terry Bergman, ’98 Robyn Davis Sekula Mailing Address Union College 310 College Street, Box 7 Barbourville, KY 40906 Advancement & Alumni Office (606) 546-1619 Web Addresses Events, activities, programs and facilities of Union College are available to all without regard to race, color, marital status, sex, religion, national origin, disability or age. Union College is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges to award degrees at baccalaureate and mater’s levels.

Reprint Policy UNION encourages reprinting of material contained herein. Permission to reprint may be obtained by contacting the Office of FALL College 2014 | 5 | Communications.

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Countless Union students have witnessed the appearance of the Pfeiffer Lake after a heavy rain. A group of students decided to take advantage one spring afternoon to take a dip!

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ENCEMENT FALL 2014 | 9 |

Mr.Union Returns Jack Early serves as Grand Marshal in 2013 Daniel Boone Festival Parade Jack J. Early (B.A. ’48), portrayed Daniel Boone and led the parade on horseback that same year, honoring Boone’s heritage and setting forth a tradition.

D. Black, former Governor of Kentucky and a founder of Union College. Family legend has it that one of his ancestors accompanied Daniel Boone on his second expedition into Kentucky.

  Dr. Early, formerly of Corbin, Ky., now a resident of Louisville, was a perfect choice to play Daniel Boone. During his time at Union, he was in leadership in student government and helped organize the festival committee. He was “Mr. Union” in 1947, as well as a student pastor and minister of the Hindman Methodist Church. He’s even a descendant of the Earlys, Joneses, and Bartons who settled in the 1790s the region that would become Knox County in 1799. He is also related to James

  Early earned his master’s and doctorate degrees in Education from the University of Kentucky and a Bachelor of Divinity degree from Lexington Theological Seminary. He has conducted motivational seminars throughout the U.S. and the world. His many honors include election to the University of Kentucky Hall of Distinguished Alumni and the Hall of Fame for the College of Education at UK, the Hall of Fame at Union College, the Chief Iron Eyes Cody Medal of Peace from a Native Americans organization, and is the holder of four honorary degrees from colleges and universities including Union in 1979.

  Now the governor of the Society of Colonial Wars in the Commonwealth of Kentucky, Early has written widely on historical and genealogical topics. An abridgment of one of his studies of the War of 1812 appeared in the 2013 Daniel Boone Festival Booklet.   The Daniel Boone Festival was created by Union College professor Dr. Karl Bleyl. Bleyl, along with Union’s then senior class, helped establish the festival as a way to celebrate the recently signed Cane Treaty between the people of Barbourville and the Cherokee Nation. According to the treaty, the Cherokee people could gather, without a fee, as much cane from the Barbourville area as they wanted.

SCHOLARSHIP: In 2013, Jack and his wife Nancye, established the Joseph and Lela Jones Early and Lt. Col. Joseph Derwood Early Endowed Memorial Scholarship fund in memory of his deceased parents and brother.

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Spring Convocation Singleton explains to students what it truly means to serve   Kevin Singleton, ‘87, Union College alumnus and founder of Elevate New York, addressed Union College students, faculty, and staff during Spring Convocation in January 2014 and emphasized what it means to serve.   He called his message, “From Union to Uganda: A Life of Service,” and broke his message into four parts, each a letter from the word serve, though Singleton shortened it to “SERV.”   The “S,” Singleton said, represents selflessness. He told students, “a servant is a person who is selfless,” or someone who puts the needs of others before the needs of himself. The “E” stands for epistemologically aware. This means, in order to serve a community, one must learn about the culture and habits of the community first, so as not to offend them. “Walk in the culture, learn the culture, or you’ll offend the culture,” Singleton said. The “R” is for repentant, and Singleton told students that in order to be a true servant, they each have to be willing to change themselves. Finally, the “V” stands for vulnerable. “If you’re not real, if you’re not vulnerable, you can’t live to help people,” Singleton said. He summed up his message in one sentence, saying, “Being a true servant means being humble and knowing you’re never really done.” He then closed convocation by praying for the students in attendance.  

  Also during the convocation service, Union President Marcia Hawkins recognized Operation UNITE, an organization started with the help of U.S. Rep. Harold “Hal” Rogers, that aims to create a drug free culture in our region. Hawkins presented a citation recognizing their achievements to Dale Morton, communications director at Operation UNITE.

A Golden Gift Union captures trophy for raising 15,284 pounds of food for Kentucky Harvest   For the third year straight, Union College captured the coveted Golden Can Trophy, a good-natured contest in Southeastern Kentucky that has a big impact.   The Pursuit of the Golden Can competition is a collegiate contest that takes place between several Eastern Kentucky schools from Oct. 15 to Nov. 15 each year, in which the colleges battle, pound for pound, to collect food for needy families during the holiday season. The winner brings home a commemorative trophy made from a food can. The Golden Can trophy is passed from school to school each year, denoting the school that raised the most food for that year.   Union College students, faculty and staff raised 15,284 pounds of food for needy families in Eastern Kentucky. Union

beat out University of the Cumberlands for the third year in a row to earn the honor. The spirited competition has Union College collecting more and more each year, with substantial gains in the amount gathered. Union students, faculty, and staff collected 4,795 pounds of food in 2011 and more than 10,000 pounds in 2012. The Golden Can Trophy was presented to Union in March.   “Since we started the Golden Can contest, we have had other college campuses participate in this program, but this past year it came down to Union College and the University of the Cumberlands,” said Jim Dorn, Kentucky Harvest Southeast Chairman. “The board of Kentucky Harvest especially wants to recognize the leadership of both of these academic institutions for their continued support of our program and their commitment to help fight hunger in our region, especially during this most recent, harsh winter.”

KEEP IN TOUCH: Follow Union College on Facebook at and Twitter at @ThinkUnionKY for updates throughout the year on campus activities.

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Moving Forward Bulldog Band provides entertainment at football games   Football fans at Union have a new feature to enjoy: a Bulldog Band. The college’s band played its first football season during the fall of 2013 and consisted of about 20 musicians, including a full drumline. Adam Webb, student director at Union, says adding a Bulldog Band to the school has been a goal of his since he came to the college. “The band was received very well,” Webb says. “Audiences seemed to enjoy the show. I got a ton of feedback last year, and all seemed very positive and optimistic about the direction of the new program.”   When the band wasn’t on the field, members sat in the stands and played the school fight song and other tunes. On-field songs were all hits by Earth Wind & Fire. The band also reached out into the community, playing at South Laurel High School in London, Ky., as an exhibition band at a high school band competition. “Many folks there were pleased and pleasantly surprised to see that Union College was re-starting a band program,” Webb says.

Special thanks

to major contributor Martin Williamson and many other alumni and bulldog fans for contributions to the “Let’s Turn the Lights On” Field Lighting Campaign. Please join us for evening football games and soccer matches beginning this fall. For detailed schedules visit

There is still time to help our BASEBALL, SOFTBALL & GOLF TEAMS

“TURN ON THE LIGHTS.” For more info visit,

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135years! 1879-2014

SCHEDULE Highlights FRIDAY, OCTOBER 17 3 pm Baldwin Place Reception 5 pm 40’s & 50’s Decade Dinner 6 pm 50 th Yr. “Golden Reunion” Dinner, Class of ’64 & Friends, The Depot, Corbin, KY 8 pm – 11 pm “135 th Celebration Jubilee Ball”

SATURDAY, OCTOBER 18 8:30 am Bulldog 5k Run 11 am Alumni Recognition & Hall of Fame Induction Luncheon 12 pm Men’s Soccer vs. University of Maine at Fort Kent 2 pm FILM RELEASE- THEY CALLED IT UNION: History of the First College in the Mountains 4 pm Decade Gatherings Tailgates 4:30 pm – 9 pm Little Bulldogs Club Children’s Activities 7 pm Football Game vs. Bluefield “Under the Lights”

For full schedule and to register visit:

SUNDAY, OCTOBER 19TH 11 am Worship Service & Spiritual Life Open House FALL 2014 | 13 |

Dr. Mann receives Honorary Degree in May of 2014

Service above Self Edna E. Jenkins Mann serves on Board of Trustees, created the School of Nursing and served as commencement speaker LAST CHRISTMAS AT EDNA MANN’S HOUSE, THERE

weren’t too many wrapped boxes marked Edna under the Christmas tree. Collectively, her family decided to forego expensive presents and instead make a contribution to the Union College nursing school instead. It was as fitting a gift as you could possibly give Edna, who has long been dedicated to Union.   Mrs. Mann shared that story with graduates during commencement – along with her account of being raised in Barbourville by her mother, who was widowed and had three small children. Her mother worked at Union in the library and in housekeeping, and left Barbourville after the town flooded and took everything they had – as meager as it was. “My mother did not complain about her lot in life, being left alone with three small children to raise,” Edna said. “She never once complained. She got to work.”

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  Edna attended Union for two years. Following the flood, she moved to Dayton, Ohio, married and moved to Indianapolis, where she is deeply involved in life in Indiana.   But she returns to Union consistently to help foster the life of the college in the community she loves. Mrs. Mann serves on the Board of Trustees of Union and created the Edna Jenkins Mann School of Nursing, which officially moved into the Center for Health and Natural Sciences in April. She came back to campus again in May to speak at commencement. She received an honorary doctorate from Union in May 2013   “Edna’s dedication to Union is inspiring,” says Union College President Dr. Marcia Hawkins. “She’s done so much to help Union serve our community and assist us in providing top-notch facilities for our students. She consistently goes above and beyond in her service on our board. Edna has a very active life in Indiana and we’re grateful she continues to make time for Union and for Barbourville.”   Edna Mann has worked side by side with her husband, Gerry Mann, to create businesses. They formed ATEC Associates in 1956,

FEATURE growing it to 1,500 employees. They sold it in 1996, but still own Mann Properties, which develops properties for businesses in Indiana and North Carolina. They have three adult children who live in Indiana. Their son, Brian, serves as managing partner of Mann Properties.

pursuit of the best answer to the question of how the college can serve Appalachia better. The recurring answer when she joined the board in 2006 was that the community needed more nurses. She committed wholeheartedly to both donating and raising funds to add a nursing school to the college.

  The Manns have given back to the educational institutions that nurtured their careers. They’ve given generously to Purdue University and have become champions for Union. As a Board member she takes a deep and vested interest in how the campus can better serve the community. When she visits the college for board meetings, she often meets with members of the community in the

  Mrs. Mann’s dream came to fruition in December 2012, when the first graduates emerged from the Edna Jenkins Mann School of Nursing. Thanks to her dedication, Union is now able to offer a fouryear bachelor’s degree in nursing. The Manns continue to fundraise and use their network to spread the word about the contributions Union makes to Kentucky, and the college is eternally in their debt.

About the Edna Jenkins Mann School of Nursing Dean: Dr. Lorene Putnam About the School: Offers two options for students seeking a baccalaureate degree in nursing. The RN to BSN program is for those who are already registered nurses after completing an associate degree or diploma program. The pre-licensure program is designed for those who are entering college or returning to college and are seeking to enter the profession with a baccalaureate degree. Accreditation: Initial approval from the Kentucky Board of Nursing. Additionally, approval of the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools, Commission on Colleges and approval from the Kentucky Council on Post-Secondary Education has been granted. The baccalaureate program at Union College is accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education. School beginnings: First enrolled RN to BSN students in the Fall 2010. Pre-nursing and pre-licensure started Fall 2012. Degrees offered: A Bachelor of Science in Nursing is offered through two different tracks: the RN to BSN for those who are already a registered nurse and the pre-licensure for those who do not have a previous nursing degree. First graduates: First RN to BSN graduated in December 2012. First pre-licensure students scheduled to graduate in May 2016. Number of students: For Fall 2014, 13 RN to BSN students expected, 18 pre-licensure, and approximately 85 pre-nursing students plan to apply for the pre-licensure program during the next two years.

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At Home in Kentucky Ken and Sarah Ramsey’s commitment to Union benefits the college and community MOST OF WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW

about Ken Ramsey you find out when his cell phone rings. And it rings a lot. The ring tone is Call to the Post, the bugle call that perks up ears of horses and humans alike at race time at Churchill Downs.   Ken’s phone is his lifeline to his farm, Ramsey Farm in Nicholasville, Ky., the health of his horses, and the latest, moment-by-moment changes in the racing lineup. He’s an avid texter, always hunting for wi-fi so he can stay in touch – but never too busy to put the phone away and tell one of many tales from the track. At 78, his avid use of his iPhone is impressive, but his enthusiasm and simple enjoyment of the sport of horse racing is more so.   Ken equates his success with a strong work ethic. “Like a bulldog, I don’t quit,” Ken says. “While the rest are resting on their laurels, I work Saturday and Sunday, and when they come back on Monday, I’m ahead.”   Horse racing has been his vocation for 20 years. Every year has been exciting to him, but there’s been few years that have been as important to him as the past 12 months.   In 2013, Ken and Sarah Kathern took home two coveted Eclipse awards, the highest awards in the sport. They were voted Outstanding Owner of the Year, an award they also won in 2004 and 2011, and Outstanding Breeder of the Year. And they had two horses in the Kentucky Derby, and another in the Kentucky Oaks, both at Churchill Downs in Louisville.   Ken kindly took time out of his busy racing schedule to come to Union on April 22, 2014, to speak on an important day for the campus: the dedication of the Kenneth L. and Sarah K. Ramsey Center for Health and Natural Sciences. The building was the former Knox County Hospital.   While his wife is known to some as Sarah, he refers to her by her middle name, Kathern, and other times by his affectionate nickname for her, Kitten.   “Kathern and I are deeply humbled to have our name on a building in our hometown,” Ken told the standing room only gathering of Union supporters and Barbourville leaders who came to the dedication.   During his speech, Ken outlined all the ways the building’s history has woven through his own family’s

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FEATURE story: generations were born and died in the space, which will now be a teaching facility that will nurture the next generation of nurses and medical talent. Family members worked at the hospital, too, supporting their families and aiding the sick. “From births to employment to deaths, our community has many associations with events that have happened inside the walls of this building,” Ken says. “To finally see it transformed into a place of learning brings a sense of joy and accomplishment to me that is difficult to express.”

outside. We didn’t have indoor plumbing. Our house consisted of six rooms and a path.”

  The Ramseys both attended Union College. Ken Ramsey attended in 1953 on an academic scholarship earned for being valedictorian of his Artemus High School class of 1952. Sarah Ramsey attended until her graduation in 1962. They are natives of Artemus, which is located just a few miles from Barbourville.

  Ken moved to the northeast to pursue a career in the transportation industry, but was anxious to come back home to Kentucky. Once he returned, he spent some time in management for McDuffy Motor Freight and then got into the real estate business, buying tracts of land that seemed rife for development. He still invests in

  Affable and excited about the world around him, Ramsey is charmingly sentimental. He names many of his horses after his nickname for Sarah, including Kitten’s Joy, Admiral Kitten, Charming Kitten and Bobby’s Kitten. Sarah is engaged in a long process of recovery from a stroke in 2007. He’s dedicated to raising his horses, but also to her. She’s by his side often, as she was in April 2014, when the new building was dedicated.

real estate, and is fostering that same spirit of entrepreneurship in the next generation. He is seeing seeds of that in his college-age grandchildren. “That spirit never dies,” Ken says. “It’s not the money. I like to take a piece of land and put something on it and increase the value of it and improve the community. You have to be willing to take risks.”

  Not only did the Ramseys donate a portion of the funds to renovate the hospital into a classroom building for Union, but they worked diligently for years to make the connections to bring the project to fruition. Ken approached Knox County Judge-Executive J.M. Hall to help Union obtain the building, and helped the college work with the Knox County Fiscal Court and the city of Barbourville. He also helped Union pursue and win $1.5 million from the U.S. Department of Commerce.   “Ken Ramsey was instrumental in acquiring the Knox County Hospital property to house Union’s health and natural science programs,” said Union College President Marcia Hawkins. “He and Sarah Ramsey have been loyal supporters of Union College for many years, and we are pleased to recognize their continued support by naming the renovated hospital building for them.”   Horse-racing is Ken’s third entrepreneurial pursuit. He credits upbringing in rural Artemus with his love of entrepreneurship. “There weren’t any class distinctions there,” Ken says. “Everyone was equal. Everyone was self-sustaining. They raised their own gardens. My father raised two hogs every year. We had a pump

  His life post-Union took him to Eastern Kentucky University for his sophomore year, and then into the U.S. Navy, and then back to college to finish his degree at the University of Kentucky. He then finished Officer Candidate School in Newport, R.I., and was commissioned an officer in the U.S. Naval Reserves.

  Ken and Sarah were pioneers in the cellular telephone industry. They owned and operated markets in Kentucky, Georgia, North Carolina, Oregon and California. They also have radio stations in several states.   Ken has served on the Union Board of Trustees since 1996. Board Chair Paul Isaacs, State Circuit Court Judge for Scott, Woodford and Bourbon counties, says Ken is dedicated to Union in a way that’s a little different than most. He simply sees the benefits Union brings to Eastern Kentucky, and how the school can be stronger and better, and wants to help. “Ken and Sarah are both very committed,” Paul says. “They both love the area and love the college. He feels he is in a position to support it. If he sees something that needs to be done, he wants to do it. When he makes a commitment, he does not do it lightly.”   Ken listens at board meetings, but doesn’t talk a lot, Paul notes. “But when there is something that interests him, he says what he thinks succinctly. If he has questions, he asks them and he wants answers. He has brought his critical judgment to his position on our board and we are better for it. The great thing about Ken is that you always know where you stand.” FALL 2014 | 17 |


Academics is the focus of life at Union College for our students and faculty. Union faculty come from institutions all over the U.S., bringing with them a diverse wealth of knowledge and expertise that they pass along to the next generation. This section of our magazine is devoted to our faculty’s accomplishments and to notable hires and retirements.


the profile of union

Dr. David Johns brings years of faculty experience, focus on global thinking to Union


of a career focused on private liberal arts institutions. He is the Vice President of Academic Affairs and Dean of the College, joining Union in July 2013. “I like Union’s mission, the way the college is focused on the region, and its commitment to first generation college students,” Johns says. “I wanted to find a place where my work could contribute to the lives of students from a wide range of backgrounds.”   During his first year on campus, Johns has brought attention to the college through his work with three important institutions — Harvard University, Oxford University Press and Guilford College — for his research in Quaker theology and his leadership in higher education.

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Johns attended the Harvard Institute for Educational Management in July, part of the university’s Graduate School of Education, in Cambridge, Mass. Through this leadership development program, he joined a select group of educational executives to assess and develop tangible strategies for longterm institutional success.   Johns was named the 2014 Judith Weller Harvey Quaker Scholar at Guilford College. He was selected for this endowed lectureship for his many contributions to Quaker scholarship, including his most recent book: “Quakering Theology: Essays on Worship, Tradition, and Christian Faith.” Guilford, located in Greensboro, N.C., is one of 12 Quaker colleges in the United States. Johns visited Guilford in February to lecture on the topic, “Can Quakers Still Quake? A Quakering Theology of Accompaniment.”   Johns also was invited to contribute a chapter titled, “Worship and Sacraments,” for the “Oxford Handbook of Quaker Studies,” which was published in November 2013. Several scholars contributed to this important reference work, the first of its kind, offering global perspectives and interdisciplinary approaches to the study of Quakerism.

  Johns came to Union College from Earlham School of Religion in Richmond, Ind., where he taught theological studies for twelve years. Prior to that, he worked at Wilmington College as assistant professor of religion and philosophy and campus minister, and at Malone University as a reference librarian and adjunct professor of religion. He also has been a guest lecturer in colleges and institutes in Honduras, El Salvador, and Mexico, and led study abroad student groups to Latin America. He holds a bachelor’s degree in religious studies from Malone University, a master’s in theology from Earlham School of Religion, a master’s in library science from Kent State University and a doctorate in theology from Duquesne University in Pittsburgh.   At Union, Johns is focusing attention on programs that will engage students in global thinking, building on the college’s existing strong Appalachian studies work, and encouraging professional development that will expand faculty influence in the classroom and beyond.   “Union College is very proud of Dr. Johns’ recent accomplishments and the positive attention he is bringing to our school,” said Union President Marcia Hawkins. “His leadership and commitment to combining spiritual-centered education with a broad world view will open a wealth of new opportunities for our students, faculty and the community.”

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Making the Grade NATIONAL ENDOWMENT FOR THE HUMANITIES Dr. Jimmy Dean Smith, Professor and Chair of the Department of English, was selected as an NEH Summer Scholar from a national applicant pool to attend one of 30 seminars and institutes supported by the National Endowment for the Humanities. Dr. Smith, whose areas of interest include Appalachian literature and religion and literature, participated in an institute entitled “Reconsidering Flannery O’Connor.” The four-week program was held in Milledgeville, Georgia, at Georgia College & State University and co-directed by Prof. Marshall Bruce Gentry of Georgia College & State University and by Prof. Robert Donahoo of Sam Houston State University. Summer Scholars attended 10 lectures, participated in seminars conducted by four leading O’Connor scholars, and spent a week working with materials available to scholars only through the Georgia College library. KENTUCKY PHILOLOGICAL SOCIETY Three faculty presented papers at the Kentucky Philological Society conference March 7 and 8 at Bluegrass Community & Technical College’s Newtown Campus in Lexington. Dr. Andelys Wood, professor of English, presented the paper, “Considering Genre and Philology: Philip Reeve’s Mortal Engines Sequence.” Dr. Shayne Confer, assistant professor of English and Reading, presented the paper, “‘It came of being ill at ease’: Caliban’s Escape from The Tempest.” Dr. Katie Egging, assistant professor of English, presented the paper, “Ghosts of the Great War: May Miller’s Stragglers in the Dust.” The Kentucky Philological Association is an organization of teachers, scholars, and others who study language and literature and who believe in the collegial exchange of information and ideas in the language arts. KPA holds an annual conference in the Commonwealth for the presentation of scholarship and creative work by members. The organization also publishes an annual literary journal, The Kentucky Philological Review. APPALACHIAN STUDIES ASSOCIATION CONFERENCE Two faculty presented at the Appalachian Studies Association conference March 28 through 30 at Marshall University, in Huntington, W.Va. Dr. Hugo Freund, professor of social and behavioral sciences, served as a panel convener and presented his paper, “Language, Ecology and Cartographic Boundaries: Globalizing Our Vision of Appalachia.” Dr. Amanda Fickey, coordinator of Appalachian Studies and an assistant professor of intercultural geography, presented her paper, “Regionalism in theory and practice, or a plea for Appalachian Studies.” Dr. Susan Isaacs, professor of English, also attended the conference. KENTUCKY POLITICAL SCIENCE ASSOCIATION Richie Mathes, ‘14, a Union student, presented at the Kentucky Political Science Association meeting March 7 and 8, Morehead State University. The title of his presentation was, “Globalization, Friend or Foe?” KENTUCKY STUDY ABROAD SYMPOSIUM Dr. Fidelis Achenjang, Professor of Chemistry, and Dr. Charles Jones, former Associate Professor and Department Chair of Psychology, co-presented at the Kentucky Study Abroad Symposium at Western Kentucky University on April 19. They presented on the topic, “Value in the value of ‘Cultural Literacy’

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for students and faculty studying and researching abroad.” The symposium was open to students and faculty who have engaged in academic activity outside their campus. The goal of the symposium is to extract from students’ examples of how the role of international and off-campus domestic academic experiences enhances student learning. WOMEN’S HISTORY MONTH Dr. Linda Silber, formerly a professor of sociology, helped bring the PBS documentary “Makers: Women Who Make America” to Union in March. She worked with the Governor’s Kentucky Commission on Women and faculty from Eastern Kentucky University. “Makers: Women Who Make America” was divided into three, one-hour segments. Representatives from the Kentucky Commission on Women came to Union to introduce the first installment. The second installment was introduced by Union College President Dr. Marcia Hawkins. The third and final viewing segment began with discussions by Silber and Union College Assistant Professor of English, Dr. Katie Egging. The documentary viewings and discussions were held in Union College’s Patridge Campus Center. QUALITY ENHANCEMENT PLAN PRESENTATION In December, Karl Wallhausser, assistant professor of English, attended the annual Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges sessions in Atlanta as Quality Enhancement Plan coordinator with Union’s reaffirmation team. Also, on March 14, he traveled with senior English major Andrew Johnston, ‘14 to Lincoln Memorial University where Andrew presented a paper at the Blue Ridge Undergraduate


Research Conference. The paper was on the French thinker Jacques Ellul and how his views on propaganda are reflected in popular culture today. Wallhausser and Dr. Christine MarleyFrederick were co-faculty sponsors. SOCIETY OF BIBLICAL LITERATURE Dr. Russ Sisson, department chair and professor of Religion, published, “Beelzebul, Jonah, and Solomon: Blending Miracle, Prophetic, and Wisdom Discourse in Q 11:14-26, 29-32,” Conversations with the Biblical World 32 (2102) 91108. He also presented in November “Wisdom and Prophetic Discourse and the Intertexture of Q,” at the annual meeting of the Society of Biblical Literature, in Baltimore, Maryland, and in February, “Scripture and Paideia in Sirach: Jewish National Identity in the Hellenistic Empire and the Emerging Hebrew Canon,” at the Midwest Region Society of Biblical Literature Meeting, in Bourbonnais, Illinois. KENTUCKY COUNSELING ASSOCIATION Dr. Kathy Blaydes-Walczak, Assistant Professor of Psychology, presented at a workshop on Crisis Management at the Kentucky Counseling Association in October. Also this academic year, she became a Licensed Professional Clinical Counselor in Kentucky and was recertified as a National Certified Counselor, National Certified Clinical Mental Health Counselor, National Certified Master Addiction Counselor, and Approved Clinical Supervisor for Counselors. APPALACHIAN COLLEGE ASSOCIATION Dr. Melinda Rice, Professor of Special Education and Online Learning Activity Coordinator, completed a research project with a colleague from Ferrum College and gave a joint presentation “Readiness for Delivering Online Education: A Faculty Perspective” with Karl Roeper at the Appalachian College Association annual Summit in October.

REMOTE AREA MEDICAL Dr. Joy Ramsey, Associate Professor, Graduate Education, volunteered as a grant writer for Remote Area Medical (RAM), a 501c3 charity based in Knoxville, Tennessee, that provides free healthcare to financially distressed and underserved individuals. Recently, she was made the Chairman of RAM’s Grant Writing Development Team for the United States. ATHLETIC TRAINING PROFESSOR RECEIVES DOCTORATE In February, Dr. Doug Branch, Assistant Professor for Athletic Training and Clinical Coordinator, successfully defended his applied research project for his Doctorate of Health Science at A.T. Still University in Mesa, Arizona. USING CLICKERS IN MATH CLASSES Manikya Rajakaruna, Instructor in Mathematics, and Dr. Jim Rubin, Associate Professor of Educational Studies, presented “Teaching and Assessing Higher Order Thinking in the Math Classroom with Clickers” at a Union College faculty lecture in February. LOCAL RED CROSS VOLUNTEER Dr. Jennifer Hatfield, Assistant Professor of Wellness, was elected in January to the board of the Southeast Kentucky Chapter of the American Red Cross and is involved in the Spread the Health Appalachia Program. KENTUCKY FUTURE EDUCATORS Jim Rubin, Associate Professor of Educational Studies, represented Union College at the 2013 Kentucky Future Educators of America State Conference in Lexington. He submitted an article for publication consideration to the International Journal of Mathematics Education titled, “Teaching and Assessing Higher Order Thinking in the Mathematics Classroom with Clickers.”

FALL 2014 | 21 |

Retiring Faculty Union's professors are gifted educators, skilled lecturers and valued researchers who make strong connections with students. We're proud to profile the following professors for their dedication to their craft and their hard work, and we send them into retirement with many well-wishes and fond farewells. Read on for profiles of their work and academic life and their plans for the future.

Finding the way home

Dr. Marshall Rasnake

  It was a long drive from his Tennessee farm to Union’s campus each week. But it never seemed to deter Dr. Marshall Rasnake. Rasnake was a professor of graduate education at Union, preparing students for a career in the classroom or in school administration. He retired at the end of the 2013-2014 school year.   Rasnake was a school administrator, superintendent and teacher before finding his second career as a professor at Union. Dr. Jason Reeves, assistant professor of education and Dean of the Educational Studies Unit, says Rasnake always emphasized how much he loved connecting to students.

  “He believed he was teaching them to be better citizens and more productive members of society,” Reeves says. “For him, teaching was the ultimate display of public service. When he was teaching students, he was ultimately making them better public servants.”   At the age of 88, Rasnake finally decided the drive, almost 90 minutes one way, was getting to be too much, Reeves says. He lives on a farm with his sister, a retired home economics teacher, and raises farm animals there. | 22 | Union College Magazine

  Reeves notes that Rasnake’s energy for teaching so late in life comes from his love of interacting with students. And those students notice his enthusiasm and connect with him in return. “I travel all across Kentucky and Tennessee, and it’s very rare I don’t have someone come up to me and say how is Dr. Rasnake doing?” Dr. Reeves says, with a laugh. “It’s not how is Union, or how is the President. It’s, ‘How is Dr. Rasnake?’”   John Dodd took classes from Rasnake at Union and considers him a close friend today. One of the most remarkable things about him is that he gave up being superintendent of a school district to teach middle school science. Dodd also notes that Rasnake is a World War II veteran. “He’s produced I don’t know how many principals, teachers, superintendents,” Dodd says. “He is just extraordinary. Everybody loves him. He is a great man.”   Both Reeves and Dodd note that Rasnake went beyond the extra mile to help students. Reeves says that Rasnake and his church in Tennessee are responsible for helping pay for the education of some 30 students who attended Union. In at least one case, Dodd recalls that he personally shepherded a student who had drug and alcohol problems and ensured that he made it through college and graduated.   “Nobody who I ever met in my life, other than my father, surpasses Marshall Rasnake, as far as his demeanor and character,” Dodd says. “He’s just outstanding.”


the best job for a book


Dr. Andelys Candy Wood   There’s a good reason Dr. Candy Wood remained teaching at Union College for 37 years: she’s never been bored. That’s probably because she’s embraced every opportunity that came along to teach new subjects, even those that initially held little personal interest for her. Along the way, she’s discovered new interests and found her own love of literature enriched by sharing it with students. Wood was a Professor of English before her retirement at the end of the 2013-14 academic year.

  “The thing about teaching English at a

college is that you get to talk to people about books and talk with people about books,” she says. “You listen to them, too. And you get paid for it. What could be better than that?”

  Wood has served in several leadership roles on campus, including a stint as interim Academic Dean and as department chair of the English Department. She was published in many academic journals, spoke at conferences, and has been well known in academic circles throughout Kentucky.   Among the notable classes Wood taught along the way is Science Fiction literature. It fulfilled the humanities requirement for literature, so it attracted students who might not normally take a literature class, she says. It was mostly men who were fans of SciFi literature. “I would walk in the room and they would already be talking about what the assigned reading was for that week,” Dr. Wood recalls. “That has happened very rarely. Everybody contributed to the class.”   Another was children’s and adolescent literature. With the surge of interest and availability of young adult literature in the past decade, her courses have added in popular books as they’ve topped the best sellers list. The Harry Potter series made the class reading list for one class.  Wood also willingly embraced new technology. Though she has an office that’s nearly floor to ceiling with bookshelves, she has an e-reader that is a faithful companion and she is delighted with how PowerPoint and other similar tools have enriched the lecture experience. “The Kindle is a wonderful invention,” Wood says. “I have 30-some books on my Kindle.” She looks around her office and gestures to the crowded bookshelves. “I am retiring. I can’t take all of this with me.”   Each summer, Wood has traveled to England to study in the British Library, go to the theater and soak in British culture. Those trips may be more frequent now that she’s not tied down to the academic year. She plans to spend her retirement years in Davidson, N.C., with a book, or a Kindle, always nearby.

FALL 2014 | 23 |

Leaving the classroom   Most of his time at Union was, indeed, spent in the classroom, but he also invested significant energy helping Union develop a recreation management program modeled after the National Recreation and Park Association accreditation standards. He created the courses that were necessary to do so and created much of the structure needed to prepare Union’s RECM curriculum for eventual accreditation hopefully in the not too distant future. The program still needs a minimum of two full-time professors with terminal degrees to gain

Dr. Randy Botkin

spent much of his career in academic recreation management courses in the college setting. Earlier in his career, he was living in Illinois and teaching at Western Illinois University. It was after six years in rural Illinois that he uprooted his family and left a tenured associate professorship to return to his home state of North Carolina in 1994 and eventually work for BB&T in WinstonSalem. His wife, Kathy, “couldn’t take any more vast vistas of soybeans and corn,” Botkin says with a laugh.   But Botkin found himself a fish out of water in corporate America. There was something missing from his life: interaction with students. He missed the classroom, and after seven years in corporate administration, he decided to seek out an academic position. Union was looking for a recreation management professor, and Botkin eagerly signed on.   For him, Union was the right fit. “I really needed to get back to my true calling,” Botkin says. “I had published extensively, I had done lots of quantitative, survey-based research, and neither one of those interested me a whole lot. Union wasn’t looking for that. They wanted someone who wanted to be in the classroom. It was an undergraduate program and that was exactly what I wanted to do.”

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college. That was the case for us. There were a number who were non-traditional, or came to Union because of sports.”  Adventure-based sports and recreation management tend to go hand-in-hand, Botkin says. Chuck Coffey, the college’s former cycling coach, often recommended students check out recreation management, as cyclers tend to love adventure sports and being outdoors. “That was such a good match,” Botkin says.   Alumni have gone on to all kinds of jobs in the world of recreation management,

“Union gave me that opportunity to teach and not worry about the other aspects of the profession, and for that, I am grateful. The program was in its infancy. I was able to revamp and restructure the program into a preferred model for our profession.” accreditation, he says. “I absolutely loved being in a classroom,” Botkin says. “Union gave me that opportunity to teach and not worry about the other aspects of the profession, and for that, I am grateful. The program was in its infancy. I was able to revamp and restructure the program into a preferred model for our profession.”   One of the interesting aspects of teaching recreation management is that it is what Botkin calls a “discovery major,” meaning that students generally do not come to college to major in recreation management. But they sometimes find it once they’re in college and choose it as a major. “Most people don’t know that much about it,” Botkin says. “They find it as they are searching for a profession in

Botkin says, and that’s what makes him proud. “We’ve opened the doors for a lot of people,” Botkin says. “That was my whole goal, not just to get them an education in the field, but to have them be successful in their field.”   Union alumni work for the National Park Service, the U.S. Forest Service, a host of state parks and various other recreation agencies. “They are a credit to the college and their chosen profession,” Botkin says.   Botkin, 66, says he was not ready to retire, but during the past two years, his health has presented some challenges that have caused him to decide it was time to go. He has moved to Mt. Airy, N.C., his hometown and where his 89-year-old mother lives. He retired at the end of the 2013-2014 school year. “I will always miss teaching,” Botkin says. “It was just time to slow down.”


wealth of Dr. Ella Hensley

  When Dr. Ella Hensley first joined the faculty at the University of Kentucky, she noticed all the men disappeared at lunchtime, but didn’t invite her to join them for lunch. So she asked another faculty member if she could tag along. He told her they weren’t going to lunch – they were playing basketball. She asked if she could join, and he said sure, and told her where to show up.   This was in 1980, and the farm-raised Hensley had never really even seen basketball, much less played. She showed up to the gym and realized what she had gotten herself into. So she instead joined a volleyball group, where she met her husband. He owned farm land in Knox County, so the couple moved to Gray, Ky., for him to farm and her to join the faculty at Union. Her husband passed away last year. She still lives on the farm, but she retired from Union last year, with plans to stay in the area. “This is home,” she says simply.


change where it is needed, whether that’s at work or elsewhere. She is active in the Nature Conservancy, Kentucky Natural Resources Council, the Sierra Club and other organizations that are dedicated to protecting land and nature.   Statewide, she may be best known for her work with the Center for Economic Education. She worked with the organization for 25 years, leading courses that introduced classroom teachers to basic economics. “Economics is so much in the news today,” Hensley says. “You just can’t understand what’s going on in the world today without knowing economics.”   Though the technology involved in teaching has changed drastically during her three decades in the classroom, the fundamentals have not, she says. “Supply and demand has been around since Adam Smith’s ‘Wealth of Nations’,” Hensley notes. But she has noticed that students are savvier in some ways. “The students have factual knowledge at their fingertips,” Hensley says. “They can find facts so fast. And I think we’ve done a good job of getting them to understand teams, and how to work in a team. They are a lot better at that.”

“This is home.”

  Dr. Ella Hensley is accustomed to creating her own path. She was the first woman to receive a doctorate in what is called there food and resource economics – or agricultural economics -- from University of Florida in 1980, and the first woman to join the faculty of the University of Kentucky in agricultural economics. She’s considered it part of her life’s work to challenge authority and push for

  They also understand that Hensley’s experience is more likely to be an aberration these days. “They certainly understand they won’t be as lucky as I was,” Hensley says. “They can’t stay 30 years in one job. They need to be agile in the workplace.”

a lifetime of Dr. Don Musselman


has retired a few times – the last time as an associate professor of graduate education from Union.

He mostly taught leadership courses, which is preparing students to become school principals. To do so, teachers must pass a four-hour test. Kentucky, Tennessee, Virginia and many other states require it.

  Musselman, a native of Lynch, Ky., served in many positions in Hampton City Schools in Virginia from 1963 to 1991, retiring after an eight-year stint as superintendent. He was named one of the top 100 educational administrators in the nation by The Executive Educator magazine in 1987.

  The first year he was at Union, 15 students took it and seven failed it. “I called the Educational Testing Service and we did a workshop,” Musselman recalls. “We went four years without a Union student failing it.”

  He then moved to Alabama to serve as a superintendent there for five years, and then came back to Kentucky to serve a three-year contract as superintendent of Harlan County Public Schools. The school district was $3 million in debt; it is a violation of Kentucky law to have any debt. He helped shore up the school district and then moved on to Union, where he has served for 14 years.

  Union students have been a joy to teach, he says. “The ones I have worked with are very courteous and prompt in getting work in to me,” he says. “They want to learn. It’s very seldom I had to set a fire under them to get them to class or to do work.”

“I’ve loved it here,” Musselman says. “This is the most enjoyable job I’ve had in 54 years in education.”   At Union, most of Musselman’s students are teachers in school systems across the commonwealth and beyond.

  One little fact that may have united him with Union’s often athletically-inclined students: he played college basketball in California and earned the nickname “Crazy Legs.”   Next up for Musselman is moving to Dothan, Ala., where he will retire with his wife, Marlene, a former school teacher. A novel he penned, The Other Side of September, historical fiction, will be published in the fall of 2014 by Ex Libre Press at Indiana University Bloomington. “I will miss it very much,” he says of teaching at Union. “But I can’t keep working forever.” FALL 2014 | 25 |

forty years of

Service   In 2007, he was charged by Union officials to develop a new social work program that would achieve professional accreditation by the Council of Social Work Education (CSWE), the only organization that professionally accredits Bachelor of Social Work programs and Masters of Social Work programs. Under Cox’s leadership, Union’s social work program received accreditation by CSWE in June 2013 retroactive to August 2007.   Among the biggest changes Cox has seen during his 40 years on campus is where students come from. When he started with Union, the student body was often from the Northeast. As the economy declined and college enrollment dropped, schools in the Northeast began recruiting more heavily and many convinced students to stay closer to home. “Those colleges wanted those students,” Cox says. “They wanted to fill their dorms.”

Jim Cox

came to Union in the 1973-74 academic year to    serve on the faculty and teach social work classes. What he accomplished was so much more.   Cox, who retains the title of Emeritus Professor of Sociology and Social Work, became the bridge from students to the Appalachian culture all around them. His program, called ALCOR (Appalachian Leadership and Outreach), was the forerunner to student service learning. It was incorporated, had its own board of directors and its own president, earning a $670,000 grant from the W.K. Kellogg Foundation. Cox served as Union College’s Program Director for ALCOR from 1976 to 1983, all while teaching social work full-time.   ALCOR students worked in 10 week summer programs for children. They provided recreational activities, assisted in health screening clinics, performed social service needs and reading assessments and provided follow up services in conjunction with the college’s work-study program. The program also recruited dentists, nurses, social workers, public school teachers and Union professors to conduct and supervise provision of basic services. Some 20 to 40 students worked each summer from 1973 to 1983.   Due to the socioeconomic changes occurring nationally in the early 1980s, both the ALCOR and the social work program were discontinued. Cox served as director of the college’s Appalachian Semester from 1983 to 1989. The program, which brought students to Union for a semester of immersion in and study of Appalachian culture, included nine hours of class time and six hours of field placement work. Students came from all over, but particularly the Northeast, and, at times, students were choosing the Appalachian semester instead of going to Europe to study. “Sometimes it was a hard sell,” Cox says. “Sometimes it wasn’t. One thing parents like is that our tuition was a lot lower.”   Cox received a sabbatical for the academic year 1989-90 to work toward a Ph.D. in sociology. From 1990 to 2007, he taught sociology and criminal justice courses.

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  Union began to see more and more students from the heart of central Appalachia, southeastern Kentucky, the state at large as well as nearby states. He sees this as a positive, in many ways, because these students are more connected to the world around them and more interested in Appalachia, and because of their deeper roots in Kentucky, able to make a long-term impact.   Cox is staying in the area, as he is eighth generation Appalachian and lives, with his wife of 50 years, Maggie Anne Baker-Cox, in Artemus, Kentucky. He loves the area and will always carry with pride the designation of Appalachian.

  “This is an emphasis the college needs to maintain and foster,” Cox says. “It appears a significant number of students come from the old Fifth Congressional District. With these local students, Union College needs to do all it can to help them become successful and make an impact on Appalachia. It speaks well of the college that our Appalachian roots and connections are being fostered.”


Exploring the appalachians Dr. John Craft Taylor   Most who knew Dr. John Craft Taylor during his days on faculty at Union College encountered him as a history professor or the faculty adviser to the Appalachian Wilderness Club.   But it almost didn’t happen. Taylor came from a long line of lawyers, and thought that was his destiny, too. Without a firm grasp on what truly interested him, he went the familiar route paved by family. “I accidentally went to law school, I accidentally graduated law school and accidentally passed the Pennsylvania bar,” he says. Taylor, who graduated from Duke University School of Law, worked as a law clerk before finally deciding law was not for him. Several people told him he was crazy for not pursuing the often lucrative field of law. But, he notes, “I’ve never had a lawyer tell me that. I never had the passion for law that I did for history.”   Pennsylvania State University was his next stop. He earned a Master’s degree and then went on to earn a Ph.D., writing a nearly 900-page thesis that studied one county, Pendleton County, W. Va., in depth. The process of writing the dissertation, and his master’s thesis on the same area, awakened an interest in Appalachian studies.

“I accidentally went to law school, I accidentally graduated law school and accidentally passed the Pennsylvania bar,” he says.   Taylor started the Union College Wilderness Club in 1980, the year he came to Union to teach history, taking students on trips to various caves, on whitewater rafting trips and for hikes throughout surrounding states. His avid interest in caving earned him recognition as a Fellow of the National Speleological Society in 1996 and the Peter M. Hauer Spelean History Award from the American Spelean History Association in 2002. Union also presented him one of its highest awards given to faculty: Excellence in Teaching Award in 1996, and the Student Government Association gave him the Distinguished Professor Award in 2013, the year he retired.   His time with the students taught him as much as it did them, and that’s been the true joy of teaching, he says. Although he’s officially retired, he still lives in the area, and lucky alumni, friends and fellow faculty members find him in the cafeteria a few days a week.   Today, at the age of 72, he still caves, hikes, and canoes, and he’s still very interested in Appalachia, and grateful to Union for continuing to connect students to the culture and topography of the mountains. He still takes trips with the Appalachian Club. “Union has been very good to me,” Taylor says. “I’ve always felt like I belonged here, and appreciated the academic philosophy here. I like Amanda Fickey and David Johns very much, and I’m happy to see what we began here many years ago continuing on.” WERE YOU WERE A MEMBER OF THE WILDERNESS CLUB? Share your photos with us by posting them on Facebook and use the hashtag #UnionOutdoors. Dr. Taylor can be reached at

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Mountain time   Fickey, a native of Letcher County with strong ties to eastern Kentucky, recently completed a doctorate in economic geography at the University of Kentucky, where she also earned a bachelor’s degree in history. She holds a master’s degree in folk studies from Western Kentucky University.   It’s a very personal pursuit, Fickey says. “I attended a very small elementary school,” she recalls. “The culture of the community was all around me and part of my life. I interacted with basket makers, story tellers, cloggers and musicians.”

Dr. Amanda Fickey leads Union to create new Appalachian Studies minor FOR THE FIRST TIME, UNION COLLEGE

will offer an Appalachian Studies minor, thanks largely to the work of the newly hired Dr. Amanda Fickey, coordinator of Appalachian Studies. She joined the college in January, and is helping cultivate Union’s love of mountain culture and share it with students.

  At the University of Kentucky, she took an Introduction to Appalachian Studies course from Dr. Dwight Billings. That experience introduced her to the idea that studying the culture, history and development of Appalachia could be a career path. “It was through taking this class and seeing Appalachia through a critical lens that I understood that we needed to understand the past to change the present,” Fickey says. “That influences what I’m working towards at Union.”   Union’s new Appalachian Studies program is positioned for success based on geography and dedicated faculty, according to Fickey. “The location of Union College in the heart of eastern Kentucky’s mountains and the long history of Union’s faculty offering courses and conducting

research pertaining to the region make the school ideal for an Appalachian Studies program,” she said.   While Union has been committed to the health and vitality of the region for nearly 135 years, administrators believe this new program will bring these efforts to new heights.   “Dr. Fickey’s expertise in economics, geography and the diverse people of this area will add much to these efforts,” said Dr. David Johns, vice president for academic affairs. “She has a deep understanding of the region and has for several years been involved in the most important conversations taking place about Appalachia. She thinks about Appalachia not in isolation, but connected to the world.”   Fickey has also served as the arts and culture outreach coordinator at The Center for Rural Development in Somerset and was a research fellow at the University of Pikeville’s Central Appalachian Institute for Research and Development.   This year, Fickey worked with college and community leaders in organizing the Union College Redbud Festival of Appalachian Culture, which was held in April on campus. Under the college’s leadership, this 10-year-old festival now has a stronger focus on Appalachian heritage with an academic component.

TALK TO US: If you participated in the Appalachian Semester program in the past, we’d love to talk to you. Contact Jay Stancil, Senior Director of College Communications, at

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Editor's Note:

This year, Union College committed to helping Knox County and the surrounding communities overcome addiction. This resulted in “Facing Addiction,” a book bringing out the stories of local residents who are battling and overcoming addiction. Our participation is part of a national program called The Facing Project, which encourages every community to find, discuss and tackle a local issue, producing a book.

  Union College recently released the new book, “Facing Addiction in Knox County: It’s Our Move,” in partnership with The Facing Project, a nationally recognized platform that helps communities face critical issues by raising awareness and urging a call to action. The book is raising community support for teen education.   The high rate of drug abuse and addiction in southeastern Kentucky has been well-documented and highly publicized. By collaborating on this book project, Union hopes to help break the dangerous cycle of addiction in Appalachia. Following a model established by The Facing Project, Union connected writers with individuals who have been affected by addiction in the Barbourville/Knox County area to produce a collection of personal narratives.   “Union College has a responsibility to champion solutions to challenges facing our community, and the Facing Project is a valuable instrument in this important work,” said President of Union College, Marcia Hawkins. “Because our mission directs us to promote the health of our Appalachian region, we are passionate about raising awareness about both addiction and paths to recovery from it.”   Books are available for a suggested $5 dollar donation in the Union College campus store. Union College also encourages members of the community to sponsor a local student to attend Camp UNITE, a summer program designed to empower youth to build a healthier future for Knox County. The camp is part of Operation UNITE, a nonprofit organization developed to combat substance abuse in Kentucky.   The Facing Project was founded in 2011 by activists J.R. Jamison and Kelsey Timmerman to connect people through stories and strengthen communities. The organization provides tools, a platform and inspiration to allow communities to share the stories of citizens through local writers, artists and actors. The first Facing Project was launched in Muncie, Ind., in the winter of 2011-2012, under the title, “Facing Poverty.” Since then, The Facing Project has launched book projects in Atlanta on sex trafficking; Fort Wayne, Ind., on homelessness; Rome, Ga., on poverty; South Bend, Ind., on youth; and a second project in Muncie about autism. For more, visit

FACING ADDICTION: For more information or to obtain a copy of “Facing Addiction in Knox County,” call (606) 546-1215, or email

FALL 2014 | 29 |

HOMECOMING “Many Great Memories” 2013

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FALL 2014 | 31 |

InBloom Appalachia Redbud rebrands as a celebration of life and culture in

  After nearly a decade as a successful community-run event that highlights Eastern Kentucky’s rich culture, the former Redbud Festival and Heritage Living Event rebranded itself in 2014 as the “Union College Redbud Festival of Appalachian Culture.” This popular event, held April 11-12 on the Union campus, featured the arts, crafts, music, storytelling, and simple living practices indigenous to Appalachia, but now offers a stronger concentration on academic education and a deeper exploration of the culture of the region.

  The festival kicked off with the Redbud Color Run on Saturday, April 5. A key educational feature of the Redbud Festival, “Reimagining Development in Eastern Kentucky: A Symposium on History and Place,” was held on April 11. The session explored

save the date

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current economic challenges facing eastern Kentucky and fostered a dialogue between local, regional and state leaders, community members and Union College students, faculty and staff.

  Other key features included the first annual Union College Student Research Forum, which featured students who are producing research in/for the Appalachian region; the Biblical Quilt Exhibit, a private quilt collection of Rev. Dr. J. Donald Graham of Berea, Ky.; “Clean Up the Cumberland River” student volunteer event; sports clinics; a Chautauqua on the life of Lilley Cornett; a photography exhibit on poverty; and the Heritage and Simple Living Area, which showcased the work of artists, artisans, chefs and craftsmen. The music of Appalachia was on hand throughout the festival.

2015 Redbud Festival April 17 & 18, 2015 For more information, visit

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1984 Football Team, Union’s first football team in the modern era.

The 1974 Baseball Team is joined by Colonel Harland Sanders. Clipping from the Mountan Advocate.


Athletic Honorees ATHLETIC SERVICE AWARD Jerry Carey, ’65 ATHLETIC HALL OF FAME INDUCTEES Kevin Bradshaw, ‘93 Michael Jones, ’90, ’98 MA Tommy Oates, ‘94 Charlie Rutledge, ‘69 TEAMS OF DISTINCTION 2003 Women’s Soccer Team 2003 Women’s Golf Team

In honor of their anniversaries, Union College will honor the 1984 Football Team (30th) and the 1974 Baseball Team (40th) for being the inaugural teams in the return of their respective sport to Union College Athletics.

JOIN US FOR HOMECOMING: October 16-19 as we honor these teams and individuals. For more information visit or call (606) 546-1619.

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AT H L E T I C S Union hosts 23 intercollegiate sports, providing students with plenty of opportunities to sharpen their athletic skills and improve their performance. Many of our teams performed well this year, breaking records and earning Union terrific recognition. Congratulations to all of our competitors! We’re highlighting just a few sports on these pages. You can find lots more results and news on our athletics web site, Coming soon, the all-new


  The Union College men's and women's swimming teams celebrated highly successful seasons in the spring of 2014. The teams traveled to the 2014 National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics National Championships at Oklahoma City Community College in March, with several athletes posting stand-out performances and breaking school records.   The team of Eliska Melicharova, Kasey McCormick, Anna Kotliarova and Callie Harrigan finished third overall in the 200 meter medley event with a time of 1:46.49 to notch NAIA and College Swimming Coaches Association of America All-American honors in the event. The mark also broke a school-record.   Callie Harrigan narrowly missed out on a National Championship in the 200 meter freestyle, finishing second in a time of 1:52.59. With the result, Harrigan earned NAIA and CSCAA All-American honors in the event, missing a first place finish by just over two seconds.   In the men's portion of the 200-IM, Jose Jesus Morales qualified for the finals, placing eighth with a time of 1:53.71 to post CSCAA Honorable Mention honors and break his own school record in the event.   Union College swimmers Dalton Baxter of Woodstock, Ga., and Kellianne Holck of Island Lake, Ill., were recipients of the 2013-14 NAIA Individual Champion of Character Award. Both Baxter and Holck garnered the honor for representing and embracing the Five Core Values of the NAIA, which are: respect, integrity, responsibility, servant leadership and sportsmanship.


  Both the men’s and women’s basketball teams had successful seasons, going on to National Tournaments.   The men’s basketball team ended their 2013-14 season with a 28-5 overall mark. They were knocked out of the National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics (NAIA) Division II tournament in Point Lookout, Missouri, by St. Thomas University (Florida). Despite losing in the tournament, Union finished with the best record in a year in program history, won their first outright conference regular season championship since the early 1970s, and won their second AAC Tournament Championship in program history. In the last Coaches’ Top 25 poll of the season, the Bulldogs ranked 23rd in all of NAIA Division II.   The Bulldogs’ leading scorer all season, junior forward Deante Johnson, ended the year earning NAIA All-American Honorable Mention honors, as six players were named to the All-AAC Teams. Also, head coach Kevin Burton, in his second season at the helm of the Bulldogs, won the AAC’s Coach of the Year Award.   The Bulldog women’s team was knocked out of NAIA Division II Women's Basketball National Championship Tournament by Hastings College (Nebraska), ending their season at 24-9 overall. The tournament was held at Tyson Events Center in Sioux City, Iowa. Among the standouts of the season was Amber Taylor, finishing with a program-record of 207 assists. She ended her career ranked 11th on the all-time scoring list with 1,165 points, 12th all-time in rebounds with 444 and second in assists at 444. Teammate Lydia Nash scored the 10th most points by a Bulldog in a season with 570 this year. Fellow Bulldog Alyson Roberts finished her career tied for 14th in rebounding with Susanna Todd who had 430. She also compiled 947 career points.

CHEER ON THE BULLDOGS: Keep up with the latest scores and Bulldogs news wherever you go with the new Union Bulldogs app for iPhone, iPad and Android devices. You can find it in the iTunes and Google Play stores. The app is free.

FALL 2014 | 35 |

Class Notes CLASS OF ’30s

Hickman Patrick, ’37, passed away on December 2, 2013, just a few weeks short of his 100th birthday. In his last letter to Union, he told about his very active 2012. He tells of riding in a hot air balloon, how he voted in his 20th Presidential Election, celebrated University of Kentucky’s 2012 NCAA Championship title and was learning to talk to Siri on his new iPhone5. He writes of attending the annual reunion of Alvan Drew School where he graduated in 1931 and numerous gatherings and reunions with friends and family. In his own words, “God has given me a great family and lots and lots of friends.”


Kenneth L. Ramsey, ’53 and Sarah K. Ramsey, ’62, once again represented Knox County at the 2013 and 2014 Kentucky Derby. Charming Kitten was their fourth horse to have run the famed Run for the Roses. The previous three include Ten Cents a Shine, Dean’s Kitten and Derby Kitten. Vicar’s in Trouble and We Miss Artie made the run in the 2014 Kentucky Derby. Thomas ‘T.C.’ Sizemore, ’51, celebrated his 92nd birthday on March 8, 2013. Pictured Left. Jean (Disney) Sears, ’52 and husband John, celebrated their 65th wedding anniversary on March 17, 2013. They have resided in Port Charlotte, Florida since their move from Kentucky in 1988. Paul Steely, ’53, and wife Stella celebrated their 62nd wedding anniversary on November 17, 2012.


Bruce Roberts, ’61, co-authored the book “So Much Better” in April 2013. For more information on his book, visit the website, www. David Austin, ’63, Professor Emeritus of Indiana University, recently had two books published. The first is the 7th edition of his book titled, “Therapeutic Recreation Processes and Techniques” (Sagamore Publishing, 2013). After first being published in 1982, it is the only book in the field of therapeutic recreation to have had seven editions. Austin also recently coauthored, with Professor Youngkhill Lee of Calvin College, the 6th edition of the textbook titled, “Inclusive and Special Recreation: Opportunities for Diverse Populations to Flourish.” This sixth edition is directed toward an inclusionary approach in the delivery of park, recreation, and tourism services, not only for persons with disabilities but for persons from all underserved sectors of society. For more information, visit www.sagamorepub. com. Henry Elam, ’66 NG, is a volunteer with Children of the Americas, Inc., (COTA) a non- profit organization dedicated to providing medical and surgical services to indigent children and their families in rural Guatemala. He has been a volunteer for more than 20 years and has made more than 60 trips to Guatemala. He has served as a volunteer at the American Red Cross and Georgetown/Scott County Hispanic Outreach Program and currently volunteers at the Hope Center in Lexington. William ‘Bill’ Emeigh, ’67, ’68 MA, proudly wears his Union College t-shirt while visiting Germany. Pictured right. | 36 | Union College Magazine

Patricia ‘Patsy’ (Prynn) Jarot, ’65, meets fellow Bulldog, Richard Buckingham, ’73, completely by accident during an Insight Tour to Poland. Touring with the same group, they began talking and soon realized they were both graduates of Union College. They immediately shared a bond and became instant friends. Paul Rice, ’63, has once again earned the AV preeminent rating from the Martindale-Hubbell, (a division of LexisNexis) for 2013. First achieved in 1992, he still maintains the highest possible rating for both ethical standards and legal ability to be given to an attorney. He is thankful to his peers for the distinguished nomination and is proud to hold the highest possible Martindale-Hubbell rating. Betty (Jones) Rhodes, ’60, 73 MA, was posthumously recognized as an outstanding community member by the Knox County Chamber of Commerce. She was described as a “pillar of the community” for her support and encouragement shown to numerous Social Study and American History students she had while teaching at Knox Central High School. Her award was received by her son, Stephen Rhodes. James, ‘Jim’ Sproul, ’62, ’65 MA, as the recipient of the NEA Distinguished Service Award met with Secretary of State Hillary Clinton at the home of Knox County native Nathan Smith. Dr. Sonya Jones, ’69, Chair and Chief Executive Officer of the Jones Educational Foundation, Inc. announces the endowment of the Reid S. Jones Scholarship in Business. The scholarship is named for her father, Reid Jones, a 1958 graduate of Union College, who was debt free upon his death in 2005. Dr. Jones says it best: “His good business sense is making it possible for students at his alma mater to benefit from his success.”

Global Opportunities

  Erin Satterlee, ’07, pictured top left, came to Union College as what he calls a blank slate: he wasn’t sure what he wanted to study or what career he wanted to pursue. Union helped him find his calling and has continued to propel him forward in a fascinating career that has taken him to countries across Africa, including Uganda, Egypt, South Sudan and Somalia as an entrepreneur building a research business with its finger on the pulse of countries emerging from turmoil.   Satterlee, 30, helped form Forcier Consulting, a research firm working in post-conflict environments. He serves as the vice president of operations. Founded in South Sudan in 2011, Forcier provides market and population research, as well as monitoring and evaluation services in some of the world’s most challenging environments answering questions about people living in countries that are shifting and taking shape by the day.   Research work has strong appeal for Satterlee, as it combines his love of adventure with an affection for numbers and adoration of implementing new technology. Forcier’s work helps shed light on some of the world’s least understood communities, he says. “Many of our reports evaluate the impact and effectiveness of development aid programs and help to drive non-profit spending,” Satterlee says.   Part of the reason that Forcier has become the organization of choice for research is Forcier’s focus on collecting data as efficiently as possible. “We made a commitment early on to integrate many first world technologies, most especially mobile data collection, into post-conflict settings and that has provided us with a real competitive advantage in the markets in which we operate,” Satterlee says. Most recently Satterlee led the rollout of a new SMS survey platform which will allow for data capture in areas previously inaccessible due to logistical or security concerns. “In places such as Somalia or South Sudan that have very real security limitations, SMS surveying gives us a method of accessing people and assessing on the ground realities. For our partners in the humanitarian and aid sectors the information provided allows for response measures to be more aptly targeted and responsive to local dynamics.”

  In under three years, Satterlee says, “We went from a couple of kids working out of a shipping container in Juba, South Sudan, to a firm of 70 staff with offices in Cairo, Juba, Hargeisa in Somaliland and Nairobi. Clients include USAID, World Bank, Gallup, BBC News, Oxfam and Save the Children, among others.   For Satterlee, it all seems a bit surreal. He grew up in Youngstown, Ohio, and came to Union his junior year of college on a baseball scholarship in the Fall of 2005. He played second base and was a 2006 All-American. Satterlee was part of the 2006 team recently honored as the team of distinction at the 2013 Homecoming ceremonies. He earned a Bachelor of Arts in Criminal Justice, and went on to earn a Master’s of Business Administration from Youngstown State University in 2009. His younger brother, Ryan Satterlee, also played baseball at Union. Bart Osborne, his baseball coach at Union, says he’s not surprised to see Erin do so well in life. Erin played second base and was an all-conference player. Osborne is still head baseball coach at Union and remembers Erin well. “He’s a highly intelligent man, and a very smart man on the baseball field,” Osborne says. “He’s a good problem solver and a great athlete. If he hadn’t hurt his elbow, he would have played professionally.”   After completing his M.B.A., Satterlee joined the Peace Corps. He was placed in Southwestern Uganda, on a Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation Grant, helping establish micro-credit village savings and loan associations. In two years, he helped create more than 300 such groups, mostly for women.   Satterlee left the Peace Corps in 2011 and began working for BTC, the Belgian Development Agency. He conducted research in Uganda, but eventually moved to Cairo, where Satterlee, an Arabic speaker, lived during the Arab Spring revolution, which saw the ouster of the Egyptian government. He left BTC to join the start-up Forcier Consulting. He currently lives in Somalia, where for the past six months he has led Forcier’s newest office. “We have experienced tremendous growth in a short time,” Satterlee says. “I enjoy building this business and working with my team. They’re all incredibly talented and smart, and have such a diversity of backgrounds. I learn a lot from working together with them. I’m very fortunate to be where I am.” FALL 2014 | 37 |

Irvin Schoenacker, ’69, loved coaching elementary and middle school chess teams for Keshequa Central School in New York. However, after leading his team to a championship title with a record of 15-11 in Spring 2013, he decided to step down after eight years of dedicated leadership.


In late 2012, Gary Hicks, ’70, published a book called “Interview with a Clown” by Little Miami Publishing, in Milford OH. The book is about the life and times of Joe Vani, member of the International Clown Hall of Fame. It’s now available online at www.littlemiamibooks. com. Ken Meibers, ’70, was again inducted into Princeton City Schools’ Athletic Hall of Fame. On January 18, 2013, he was selected to the Princeton High School (Cincinnati, Ohio) Hall of Fame for outstanding coaching in boys and girls track, cross country and basketball during his 21 years with Princeton. During the fall of 2013, he was appointed Commissioner of the Ohio Valley Athletic League (OVAL) of the Cincinnati area for his outstanding commitment in both the classroom and athletics. Ken currently coaches track, girls basketball and cross country at Mt. Healthy High School. Terry Smallwood, ’72, a financial advisor with Wells Fargo, earned the 2013 Wells Fargo Advisors “Premiere Advisor” Designation for the second consecutive year. As a member of the firm’s Premier Advisors Program, he has met or exceeded high standards in at least one or more of the firm’s criteria for revenue generation, educational attainment and client-service best practices. After working 35 years at the Cincinnati Public School System, Judy (Woolum) Darling, ’76, retired in June 2013. Her daughter, Amanda, is an active student here at Union. Ed Hammell, ’77, MA ’78, served our country in the Air Force for 13 years after graduation. He lives in Wilmington, N.C., and is currently involved with the World Shine Foundation in Uganda. He is actively seeking sponsorship for the area schools so that underprivileged children can continue their education. Claudia (Gibson) Greenwood, ’79 MA, was named Knox County’s Volunteer of the Year during the KCEOC “Helpful Hands, Hopeful Hearts” Banquet in November 2012. Janet (Rose) Alexander, ’79, owns and operates Alexander’s Blind & Drapery shop in St. Joseph, MO. In her spare time she volunteers at the local theater, Robidoux Resident Theater, as a costume designer. She produces costumes for approximately 10 plays per year, including 5 musicals with as many as 30-40 actors. She has been locally and nationally recognized for her outstanding costume design.

In March of 2013, Marcus Roland, ’88, was in a production of the Actors Guild of Lexington. He played the leading role of a novelistturned-teacher-for-hire in “Seminar,” a play by Theresa Rebeck. Anthony Davis, ’89, earned his Master’s in Education at the University of Dayton. He coached UD football from 2000-2011, winning 2 National Championships and 8 conference championships in NCAA Mid-Major play.


Vicki Sheafer, ’90, a Psychology Professor at LeTourneau University, won the Frank Costin Memorial Award for Excellence in 2012. As judged by the Institute Faculty, her award winning poster presentation best promoted quality teaching methods. Amy Jo (Asher) Sprinkles, ’91, MA ’93, a teacher at Lay Elementary was one of three Knox County teachers to receive the 2013 Campbellsville University Excellence in Teaching Award. Sherry (Campbell) Bohl, ’92, MA ’94, of Jesse D. Lay Elementary has been named “Best Mannered Teacher” of the 2012-13 school year by the Tri-County National League of Junior Cotillions after being nominated by two of her students. Her students describe Sherry as being friendly and polite to both students and faculty and is always encouraging students to say please and thank you. Lisa Rothwell, MA ’93, has recently merged her Law Office with Moore-Eiterman & Rothwell, LLC. In addition, she founded Rothwell Resolution Center, the area’s first Mediation Center in West Union, Ohio, and currently serves on the Board of Director’s for Health Source of Ohio. In her spare time, she serves as an independent professional for Damsel in Defense, a personal protection and family safety company. Beth (Hudson) Goins, ’94, NG, with more than 15 years of experience in journalism, public relations and marketing, is now President of her own marketing firm, Blue Sky Communications LLC, located in Georgetown, Ky. Beth completed her Broadcasting degree at Morehead State University but says Union will always have a special place in her heart. James Davis, ’96 MA, earned his Doctor of Education in Educational Leadership & Policy Studies at Eastern Kentucky University in 2013. Upon graduation, James served as the Counselor/Assistant Professor of Psychology at Somerset Community College in London, KY. Ramona Davis, ’98 MA, was named as the new Assistant Superintendent of Corbin Independent Schools in 2013. She previously worked at Corbin Middle School for 26 years, having first served as a teacher and most recently as Principal.


In November 2012, Robert Hayes, ‘93 MA, was teaching in the psychology departments of both Bluefield State University and Strayer University in West Virginia while practicing as a supervised clinical psychologist working with persons addicted to opiates and other similar substances.

Charles Yahres, ’80 MA, after 31 years of service, has recently retired from the Department of Defense Education Activity (DoDEA). During his career, he taught in Germany and completed numerous school administration assignments in Germany, Bermuda, Cuba, Japan and England. His last assignment was serving as Principal of the Charles F. Bolden Jr. Elementary/ Middle School in Beaufort, S.C., where he and wife, Carmella, and son, Conner currently reside.

Kenna (Harlow) Williams, ’99, 02 MA, began her first year as Assistant Principal at North Laurel School High School in the fall of 2012.

Mary Alice Lay, ’80 MA, was recognized as an outstanding community member by the Knox County Chamber of Commerce. She has received numerous awards for her contributions to the community and has an unwavering commitment and dedication to Union College.

Brian Lee, ’89, is currently serving in his first year as the Head Football Coach at Eastern Montgomery High School in Elliston, Va. However, this is not his first year coaching. His career started in 1999 serving 4 years as the Head Football Coach at Lee High School in Jonesville, Va., and for the past 10 years was Head Football Coach/ Athletic Director at Thomas Walker High School in Ewing, Va. | 38 | Union College Magazine

In 2013, Justin Payne, ’99, completed his degree from the LSU Graduate School of Banking. During one group project that required them to simulate a bank, he was named CEO by team members and led his group to win “Best Bank.” Earlier this year, Justin was promoted to Senior Vice President and Operations Officer for Commercial Bank. He and his wife, April (Corey) Payne, ’05, ’08 MA, reside in Barbourville with their sons, Corey and Noah. Pictured right.



Kelly Evans-Rankin, ’00, is practicing Family and Sports Medicine in Georgetown while serving as a Family Medicine faculty physician at the University of Kentucky. She resides just north of Lexington with her husband, Wade, also a faculty physician at UK and their two daughters, Ruger Lee and Aspen Belle. Kim (McDonald) Jones, ’00, MA ’13, was named “Best Mannered Teacher” of the 2012-13 school year by the Tri-County National League of Junior Cotillions. She was nominated by her student, who writes that she is kind to everyone and “sits properly at her desk when she grades papers.” Jennifer (Phipps) Melton, ’00, MA ’02, a high school teacher at Knox Appalachian School was one of three Knox County teachers to receive the 2013 Campbellsville University Excellence in Teaching Award. Michael Warren, ’01, was promoted to Sergeant for the Metro Nasvhille Police Department in the Spring of 2013. Pictured left. Kyle Raney, ’01, received his M.Sc. from Heriot-Watt University (Edinburgh, Scotland) in 2012. He is currently the Application Research Manager at Alltech where his primary focus is on algae production for use in the animal feed industry and alternative fuels. Kyle currently resides in Winchester, Ky., with his wife and son. Jason Chadwell ’03, is currently serving a two year term as President of the Clay County Chamber of Commerce. Brian Frederick, ’03, MA ’04, teaches at Knox Middle School and was also one of three Knox County teachers to receive the 2013 Campbellsville University Excellence in Teaching Award. Kelly (Pendergraft) Marcum, MA ’05, won the 2013 Campbellsville Excellence in Teaching Award for Laurel County. She teaches math at North Laurel Middle School. Melissa (Dozier) Newman, ’08, ’12 MA, released her third novel, “Growing up Wilder.” The book made its debut at Writers’ Row during the 2013 Red Bud Festival. In addition, Melissa has been reappointed to the KY Commission on Women by Governor Steve Beshear. Since her first appointment in 2009, she has played an active role in many new and ongoing projects. Going forward, the Commission will focus on domestic violence education across the Commonwealth.


Alex King, ’13, currently resides in Columbus, Ga., where he is an Athletic Training Fellow at the Hughston Foundation and Head Athletic Trainer at Harris County.

Masie Insko

Maisie Insko finds her calling as WLEX-18 reporter in Lexington, Kentucky.

  Maisie Insko, ‘11 was an education major at Union on a basketball scholarship when she discovered what she really wanted to do was work in the communications field.   Even though she was three years deep into an education degree, Insko changed her major at the end of her junior year to communications. Directly after graduation, Insko went to work for WYMT in Hazard, Ky., as the morning anchor and reporter. She enjoyed the work, but the hours were long and she missed Lexington, so she decided to move back and find work. Insko started work at WLEX in February 2013 as a general assignment reporter.   “This was an easy transition,” says Insko, who was an intern at the station in 2011. “Most of the people I interned with are still there. I knew the stories they liked to cover. Every station is different. At WLEX, our brand is covering hard news, and that is most of what I cover. We focus on what is happening now.”   Since arriving at WLEX, Insko has worked weekends. Among the stories she has covered is the murder of Bardstown Police Officer Jason Ellis in May 2013, spending hours at the crime scene and interviewing people who knew him.   Insko also traveled with the University of Kentucky women’s basketball team during their games in the NCAA tournament. This took her back to her own days of playing college basketball at Union. A scholarship paid for about half of her education at Union, which felt like home to her, as it reminded her of her hometown, Mt. Olivet, Ky. “Spring break of my junior year of high school, I went down there and didn’t want to go anywhere else,” she says.   Her freshman and sophomore years at Union her team went to two national tournaments. She even had knee surgery after her freshman year, but went on to play more.   Speaking to high school students is a thrill for Insko. She returns to Mt. Olivet occasionally to talk about her success in media. She tells the students that it’s OK to change their minds about what they want to study. “I was an education major until the end of junior year at Union,” Insko says. “The more classes I took in communications, the more I felt that was where I was supposed to be.”   Among those who helped her find her way at Union was Insko’s Lady Bulldogs Basketball Coach Tim Curry. He encouraged Insko to remember that there is life outside of basketball, and classes are important. Insko also credits Dr. Christine Marley with helping her understand what her first jobs in journalism would be like, preparing her for the working world. “She was very real,” Insko recalls. “She told us, ‘Your first job is going to be a lot of hours and you’re not going to make much.’ But that didn’t matter to me. The more classes I was taking, the more I thought I should give it a shot.”

WATCH ONLINE: You can watch some of Maisie Insko’s reporting online on the LEX web site,

FALL 2014 | 39 |


Lori Bargo, ’12 and Marcus McKeehan, ’12 were married on May 25, 2013 at the Conway Boatman Chapel.

Mollie Messmer,’10 and Brandon Barnes, ’10 were married on June 1, 2013.

| 40 | Union College Magazine

Amanda Hale, ’12 and Daniel Crump, ’12 were married on September 21, 2013.

Chelsi Walls,’12 and Andrew Hillard, ’13 were married on February 8, 2014.


Future Bulldogs

Kristi (Merida) Miller, ’06, ’08 MA, and husband John Thomas Miller announce the birth of their daughter, Emory Kate Miller on October 14, 2013.

Billie Hayes, ’11, ’13 MA, announces the birth of granddaughters who were born exactly one year apart! Cadence Lee Hayes was born January 10, 2013. She weighed 5 pounds, 5 ½ oz and was 18 inches long.

Professor John Gould announces the birth of his grandson Benjamin Gould. He was born on July 29, 2013 and weighed 8 lbs. 5 oz.

Cadence’s little sister, Lilly MaeLynn Hayes was born January 10, 2014, and weighed 6 pounds, 4 ounces and was 19 ¾ inches long.

Harry Edward Brown was born to Ryan and Laura (Brown) Schnitzler, ’99 on April 14, 2013.

Laurel Katherine Chesnut, daughter of Corey and Meghann (Gaunt) Chesnut, ’07, celebrated her 1st birthday on August 17, 2013.

Abram Ericson Webb was born to Aimee and Chris Webb, ’98, MA ’03 on March 4, 2013. “Abe” was six weeks early and weighed 5 lbs. 2 oz. and was 17 inches long.


Cameron Scott McGraner was born to Sean and Kim (Sell) McGraner, ’02 on April 18, 2013. He weighed 7lbs. 7 oz. and was 21 inches long.

Our apologies to Ola Comer, ’51, as a memorial contribution made in memory of her husband, Donald was erroneously reported in the 2013 publication of the Honor Roll of Donors as being given by Donald Comer in memory of Ola Comer.

Brandon Davisson , ’07, ’08 MA and wife, Kim (Smith) Davisson, ’06, ’07 MA, announced the birth of their first daughter, Allison Katherine Davisson on August 10, 2012.

Our apologies to Martin Feipel, ’74, as a memorial contribution received in memory of Michael Gensler, ’70, ’71 MA, was inadvertently omitted from the 2013 publication of the Honor Roll of Donors.

LET’S HEAR FROM YOU: Send updates through our web site at, by e-mail at or send by mail to Office of Alumni Relations, Union College, Box 4, Barbourville, KY 40906

FALL 2014 | 41 |


Rev. William “Bill” Campbell, ’59 June 18, 2013

Judy Harris, ’60 October 17, 2013

Julie L. Caster, ’95 October 13, 2003

Rhonda (Tyler) Haslam, ’78 June 26, 2013

Betty (Simmons) Chapman, ’54 November 24, 2013

George Hendricks, ’50 October 21, 2013

Chad S. Cohenour, ’75 April 29, 2013

Joseph M. Hodges, ’72 December 19, 2012

Janet (Steward) Cohenour, ’69 MA August 8, 2013

Kathryn (DeGroff) Hollett, ’78 December 21, 2012

Donald R. Comer, ’53 August 31, 2012

Eugene Huff, ’60, ’76 MA December 8, 2011

Jacqueline (Golden) Cooper, ’43 April 20, 2013

William F. Isbister, ’74 March 16, 2013

Geraldine (Bennett) Corey, ’51 November 16, 2012

Carolyn S. (Gillespie) Jackson, ’60 October 12, 2012

Edith (Hubbard) Cornett, ’61 July 3, 2012

Flora (Cummings) John, ’53 December 7, 2013

Jeremiah Cox, ’99 April 26, 2013

James W. Johnson, ’59 November 16, 2013

Nanetta (Ely) Cridlin, ’45 October 8, 2013

Gladys (Fleming) Kessel, ’44 October 13, 2012

Mary Ann (Cornett) Bingham, ’65, ’70 MA December 6, 2012

Bernice (Millard) Detherage, ’61 January 3, 2013

Rose Mary (Randall) Lewis, ’54 June 29, 2013

Paul “Dolphin” Bodenstein, ’50 January 18, 2013

Louise (Hauser) Dizney, ’38 January 1, 2014

Lisa (Davis) Mace, ’93, MA ’95 May 3, 2013

Kenneth M. Boggs, ’66 November 21, 2013

Ambrose “Andy” Dudley, ’58 July 15, 2013

Jeanette R. (Elam) Mills, ’38 December 21, 2012

Amy Bordogna-Price, ’94 January 11, 2013

Franklin D. Earle, ’62 December 17, 2013

Linda (Jordan) Mills, ’70, ’77 MA February 6, 2014

Roger R. Brooks, ’61 March 4, 2013

Pat (Smith) Edwards, ’67 November 1, 2012

Dora (Irvin) Millsaps, ’41 April 14, 2013

Charles W. Buchanan, ’47 February 3, 2014

David C. Elliott, ’49 February 7, 2013

Herman W. Miracle, ’52 April 12, 2010

Beverley (Pressnell) Button, ’58 July 10, 2013

Anne (Rudd) Englert, ’46 December 24, 2012

Jane (Maggard) Moberly, ’32 July 13, 2012

Elizabeth “Bette” (Webber) Butz, ’69 March 19, 2013

Wyn W. Evoy, ’65 November 22, 2013

Freddie Morgan, ’63 August 28, 2013

Barry W. Burch, ’90 December 19, 2013

Orville Gross, ’42 October 21, 2013

John Mutambara, ’65 October 21, 2013

Grace (Nolan) Byles, ’49 August 1, 2013

Donald Hammond, ’63 February 18, 2008

Amanda (Wilder) Myers, ’58 May 11, 2013

Iva Jean (Siler) Campbell, ’60, ’69 MA January 20, 2013

John C. Hantke, ’72 October 7, 2013

Hickman Patrick, ’37 December 2, 2013

Gillis Adams, ’56 August 27, 2013 Gladys (Bain) Amis, ’56 January 1, 2013 Ralph E. Arnett, ’62 October 29, 2012 Gearl G. Asher, ’52 August 14, 2013 Gennaro J. Assorgi, ’67 March 2, 2009 Jackie L. Bargo, ’91 December 1, 2012 Delzinna (Souleyret) Belcher, ’78 March 28, 2013 John W. Belyea, ’57 November 10, 2013 Karl L. Bennett, ’65 February 23, 2013 Tommy Bennett, ’72 March 7, 2013

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Bashford Power, ’41 January 14, 2013 Ruth (Briggs) Prosser, ’50 December 26, 2013 Mary Lou Pursiful-Petrey, ’87 February 20, 2013 Willette K. Reems, ’51 December 3, 2012 Dorothy (Peach) Reese, ’50 November 28, 2013 Martha (Bender) Reid, ’38 December 20, 2013 R. Cecil Rice, ’42 January 29, 2013 June (Chumley) Smith, MA ’73 April 26, 2013 George H. Smith, ’61 May 7, 2013 R. Brian Smith, ‘’54 June 3, 2013 Spencer M. Tate, ’07 MA October 31, 2010 Cheryl (Gibson) Tatro, ’71 December 30, 2013 Roger L. Truitt, ’65 April 13, 2012 Erle J. Vaughn, ’50 November 19, 2012

  Dr. John Godfrey Mutambara, B.A. Philosophy ’65, died on October 21, 2013, of a heart attack in his native Mutambara, Zimbabwe, where he served as Chief of his village, succeeding his father and brother in the office.   Dr. Mutambara first came to the U.S. on a Methodist Scholarship. After graduation, he attended Oxford University in England, and returned to Zimbabwe (then Southern Rhodesia) to study law. In that time, black Rhodesians could not practice court room law. Union classmates and Union President Dr. Mahlon Miller gathered resources to bring him back to Union and then to the University of Cincinnati. He taught at UC and earned his doctorate in British Colonial History there during a 10-year period.   After earning his doctorate, he returned to Zimbabwe and settled into the Methodist Mission College at Nyadire where he fulfilled his career as department head and teaching professor. His wife, Grace, was an elementary school teacher and they had four children together. Dr. Mutambara retired to the capitol city of Harare in 2002, and was elected chief of his tribe in November 2011. He served until his death.

Rodney Von Gruenigen, ’52 January 3, 2013 Randall Wagner, ’48 May 9, 2013 Erma (Hammond) Waltz, MA ’76 August 30, 2013 Peter White, Jr, ’50 October 29, 2013 Robert B. Wildrick, ’71 March 28, 2013 James N. Wilkins, ’64 March 6, 2013 Jane (McDonald) Wilson, ’80 MA October 14, 2012 James D. Zaiser, ’73 December 10, 2012 Margarita (Vincent) Zito, ’56 May 24, 2012

IN MEMORIAM FORMER STAFF/TRUSTEES/BOARD John C. Anggelis, former Union College Trustee January 9, 2013 John Ladenburger, husband of Union College Trustee, Jeanette Ladenburger July 7, 2014 Rhenda Kay (Bonner) Mills, wife of former Union College Trustee, Doyle Mills January 17, 2013 Dr. James Edwin Parker, Jr., ’47, former Union College Trustee January 19, 2013 Dennis R. Rader, Associate Professor of Education from 1999 to 2004 February 14, 2013 Betty Stroud, Professor Emeritus of Music from 1979 to 2000 May 26, 2014 Wilma (Morris) Wilson, ’54, wife of former Union College Trustee, Dr. Benny J. Wilson March 9, 2013

FALL 2014 | 43 |

310 College Street Barbourville, KY 40906-1499


135years! 1879-2014 PRESERVE YOUR PLACE IN HISTORY!   In its 135 years as an educational institution, Union College has relied on supporters like you to create the thriving campus we have today. The Union College Legacy Walk serves as a tribute to you and others who have helped shape our college. Your support creates a timeless message for future generations of students.   To celebrate this anniversary we invite you to purchase a brick to celebrate a reunion, graduation or milestone for yourself or honor a classmate, teacher, family member, or another influential person in your life.   Whatever the occasion, your Legacy Brick will provide an enduring link between you and Union College. Bricks can be purchased for $135.

For more information and a printable form visit:

Profile for Union College

Union College Magazine - Fall 2014  

Union College Magazine - Fall 2014