Alumni Volunteers assist graduating seniors with academic regalia. This happens annually in May. Let us know you’d like to help! firstname.lastname@example.org
Alumni gather in various cities on the same evening for a happy hour event aimed at allowing alumni to get to know other E&Hers in their area. This happens annually in March, and we need volunteers to help host events.
The E&H Alumni Board hosts the first Emory & Henry Faculty/Staff Social of the school year. It’s a wonderful opportunity to meet other alumni and to see your favorite faculty members! This occurs annually in August. Be in touch! email@example.com
The Emory & Henry LinkedIn Company Page — If you’re not registered there, do that now! We encourage students to use this link for job networking and we’d love to have your involvement.
The E&H Alumni Board of Directors
We’re always looking for alumni who would like to serve E&H through this leadership board. Let us know if you’re interested in serving as opportunities allow. firstname.lastname@example.org
On-Campus Event Volunteers
When the College throws a particularly big event (inaugurations, commencement, etc.) they often need volunteers to help as ushers and helpers. Watch the calendar for opportunities, or be in touch: email@example.com
Never underestimate the importance of your attendance at organized events. Join the fun, and make the event truly successful. Check out upcoming events!
Referring a prospective student to Emory & Henry College is one of the greatest things you can do to assist the College in promoting its mission. If you know of a potential college student who’d be a productive member of the E&H community, let us know!
A gift to the Emory & Henry Fund is a great way to be involved at the College. Your gift supports the students and the work of the faculty— and giving online is easy!
If you use Facebook or Twitter or any other form of social media, use it to promote Emory & Henry’s good news. “Like” and “Follow” the Emory & Henry page for breaking news, then share it with your friends and colleagues.
Did you take a photo at Homecoming that you really loved? Share it with the alumni office! Email to: firstname.lastname@example.org
Meet Our Alumni
- <span class="lw_item_thumb"><a href="/live/profiles/770-ashley-anderson" title="Ashley Anderson" aria-label="Ashley Anderson"><img src="/live/image/gid/16/width/345/height/225/crop/1/src_region/0,51,640,691/541_14429489_10104176658464845_379036427_n.rev.1505248978.jpg" alt="Ashley Anderson" title="Ashley Anderson" class="lw_image" width="345" height="225" data-max-w="640" data-max-h="960"/></a></span><div class="lw_widget_text"><h4 class="lw_profiles_headline"><a href="/live/profiles/770-ashley-anderson"><p> Ashley Anderson, ’05: Higher Education Professional and Diversity Advocate</p></a></h4><div class="lw_profiles_description"><h4><strong>Ashley Anderson - Regional Admissions Representative, University of Alabama</strong></h4><h4><strong>Graduate Degree: Master of Arts in Teaching, Indiana University-Purdue University, Indianapolis; Graduate Certificate in Higher Education and Student Affairs, Indiana University</strong></h4><p> </p><p> “I learned how to make a difference in the world because of my time spent at Emory & Henry College…I carry the teachings of E&H with me everyday, especially in the workplace where I pride myself on being a change-maker. In my current position, I work with entering college students, and I have a strong passion for working with undocumented and LGBTQ+ students and helping them find the right college fit. I was able to cultivate this passion during my time E&H where I learned to be an advocate for justice and equality.”</p></div><a href="/live/profiles/770-ashley-anderson" class="link-with-arrow gold">Keep reading</a></div>
- <span class="lw_item_thumb"><a href="/live/profiles/2569-ryan-hasty" title="Ryan Hasty" aria-label="Ryan Hasty"><img src="/live/image/gid/68/width/345/height/225/crop/1/src_region/0,0,960,960/6063_profile_1.rev.1552564875.jpg" alt="Ryan Hasty" title="Ryan Hasty" class="lw_image" width="345" height="225" srcset="/live/image/scale/2x/gid/68/width/345/height/225/crop/1/src_region/0,0,960,960/6063_profile_1.rev.1552564875.jpg 2x" data-max-w="960" data-max-h="960"/></a></span><div class="lw_widget_text"><h4 class="lw_profiles_headline"><a href="/live/profiles/2569-ryan-hasty"><p> Ryan Hasty is in research and development at Makani Power, a spinoff of Google X. And while he values his science education, he especially appreciates the ethical discussions behind science that punctuated his education at Emory & Henry.</p></a></h4><div class="lw_profiles_description"><p> Ryan Hasty works at Makani Power, a wind energy R&D project that was spun off from Google’s <a href="https://www.ehc.edu/live/image/gid/68/width/650/6062_ryan_hasty.png" class="lw_preview_image"><img width="500" height="333" alt="A photo of Ryan Hasty's flight project at Makani Power." src="/live/image/gid/68/width/500/height/333/6062_ryan_hasty.rev.1552504772.png" class="lw_image lw_image6062 lw_align_left lw_column_width_half" srcset="/live/image/scale/2x/gid/68/width/500/height/333/6062_ryan_hasty.rev.1552504772.png 2x, /live/image/scale/3x/gid/68/width/500/height/333/6062_ryan_hasty.rev.1552504772.png 3x" data-max-w="2000" data-max-h="1333"/><span class="lw_image_caption lw_column_width_half lw_align_left" style="width: 500px">A photo of Ryan Hasty's flight project at Makani Power.</span></a>secretive research division known as X. “We are developing an airborne energy kite technology that integrates advances in aerospace engineering, materials science, and autonomous controls. As a prototype engineer on a small team, my objectives range from flight hardware integration to prototype design and flight testing.”<br/><br/> He says what he loves most about the work is “the amalgamation of advanced aerospace concepts with experimental clean energy. The evidence of anthropogenic climate change is clear and unequivocal. Our decisions from here forward with respect to energy production will have a significant impact on future life on earth. This project is one of many new energy technologies aimed at pushing the limits of what we know to be possible.”<br/><br/> He says research and development work is challenging by definition – the whole idea is to try something that has never been done before. But therein also lies R&D’s greatest excitement. “Exploration and creativity speak to something innate and instinctive within us as humans, and the highest expression of these instincts are the things or ideas we bring into the world.”<br/><br/> Ryan studied Chemistry and Environmental Studies at Emory & Henry. He says he is, of course, benefiting from the technical aspects he learned from his major study areas, but he especially values the opportunities Emory & Henry gave him to ask the ethical questions behind science and technological development. “It’s not enough to ask ourselves whether we <em>can</em> build something, we must seriously ask whether or not we <em>should</em>. These questions are critical to our future with the rapid progression of aerospace technologies, robotics and artificial intelligence.”<br/><br/> When he’s not creating and molding new ideas, he can be found serving as a mentor to several local high school F.I.R.S.T Robotics Teams and can be found building combat robots for ABC’s ‘Battlebots.” He is also a dedicated practitioner of Brazilian Jiu Jitsu and supports homeless rights efforts in the Bay Area.</p></div><a href="/live/profiles/2569-ryan-hasty" class="link-with-arrow gold">Keep reading</a></div>
- <span class="lw_item_thumb"><a href="/live/profiles/690-" title="Chris Whitt" aria-label="Chris Whitt"><img src="/live/image/gid/2/width/345/height/225/crop/1/src_region/0,0,450,299/340_195154692a4a9ca21aec2fe00c319ccd_f7172.rev.1500309442.jpg" alt="Chris Whitt" title="Chris Whitt" class="lw_image" width="345" height="225" data-max-w="450" data-max-h="299"/></a></span><div class="lw_widget_text"><h4 class="lw_profiles_headline"><a href="/live/profiles/690-"><p> It’s all Emory & Henry’s Fault</p></a></h4><div class="lw_profiles_description"><p> “While I was a student, I participated in a teaching abroad program in Brazil that was offered by the college, and I fell in love with the Brazilian culture and people. So I decided to make it my home.” So for 7 years he ran a school that taught English as a second language, and in 2008 he opened his very own such business in Londrina, Brazil, called High School Language Center. Solving more than one need for the community, his school gives families a chance for constructive child care. “My school offers an alternative to a babysitter for families who think learning another language is important. The kids from ages 2 1/2 and up study 3 hours per day at my school. They have a lot of fun learning.” Look for his school online and you’ll find projects like mystery movies his students produce to practice their English.</p><p> Chris is just one of many alumni who are using their E&H degrees to solve problems. If you know a student who might like to use education to make the world a better place, check out the <a href="https://www.ehc.edu/ampersand/">Ampersand</a> project at Emory & Henry!</p></div><a href="/live/profiles/690-" class="link-with-arrow gold">Keep reading</a></div>
- <span class="lw_item_thumb"><a href="/live/profiles/1444-fred-parker" title="Fred Parker" aria-label="Fred Parker"><img src="/live/image/gid/68/width/345/height/225/crop/1/src_region/0,0,2125,3199/2358_Political_People_004.rev.1516296690.JPG" alt="Fred Parker" title="Fred Parker" class="lw_image" width="345" height="225" srcset="/live/image/scale/2x/gid/68/width/345/height/225/crop/1/src_region/0,0,2125,3199/2358_Political_People_004.rev.1516296690.JPG 2x, /live/image/scale/3x/gid/68/width/345/height/225/crop/1/src_region/0,0,2125,3199/2358_Political_People_004.rev.1516296690.JPG 3x" data-max-w="2125" data-max-h="3199"/></a></span><div class="lw_widget_text"><h4 class="lw_profiles_headline"><a href="/live/profiles/1444-fred-parker"><p> Fred Parker serves as the Treasurer of Washington County, Virginia.</p></a></h4><div class="lw_profiles_description"><p> In addition to his E&H degree, he also holds studied at Lincoln Memorial University, East Tennessee State University, and the University of Virginia.</p><p> He has served on a variety of professional boards including the Governor’s Advisory Commission on the Dillon Rule and Local Government, the Virginia Association of Locally Elected Constitutional Officers (serving as president in 2004), Served as president of the Treasurers Association of Virginia, is on the Southwest Virginia Association of Treasurer’s and Clerks, the Treasurer’s Association of VA, Virginia State SNAP Non-Arbitrage Program Advisory Board Since Inception, Southwest Virginia Regional Jail Authority, VA Government Finance Officers Association, VACo Investment Pool, and Washington County Industrial Development Authority.</p><p> He is a member of the Abingdon Rotary Club and a Paul Harris Fellow. He is a former chair of the Washington County Democratic Committee and was a delegate to the Democratic National Convention in 1996.</p><p><br/> His list of awards and involvements is long, as is his passion for serving the community.</p></div><a href="/live/profiles/1444-fred-parker" class="link-with-arrow gold">Keep reading</a></div>
- <span class="lw_item_thumb"><a href="/live/profiles/2655-mark-handy" title="Mark Handy" aria-label="Mark Handy"><img src="/live/image/gid/68/width/345/height/225/crop/1/src_region/0,0,531,531/6281_Mark_Handy.rev.1554843091.jpg" alt="Mark Handy" title="Mark Handy" class="lw_image" width="345" height="225" srcset="/live/image/scale/2x/gid/68/width/345/height/225/crop/1/src_region/0,0,531,531/6281_Mark_Handy.rev.1554843091.jpg 2x" data-max-w="768" data-max-h="768"/></a></span><div class="lw_widget_text"><h4 class="lw_profiles_headline"><a href="/live/profiles/2655-mark-handy"><p> Dr. Mark Handy (E&H Class of 1986) is recognized for unusual personal service as a physician.</p></a></h4><div class="lw_profiles_description"><p> Dr. Mark Handy is not a typical physician. For starters…he plays the banjo.</p><p> Dr. Handy is known throughout the region of Southwest Virginia, East Tennessee, and Western North Carolina as an accomplished musician, a fine flat-footer, and he was even in a music video with Zach Galifianakis.</p><p> It’s enough to make you forget that he is also a beloved physician, a decorated medical school educator, and a tireless volunteer for emergency services.</p><p> In 2019, Dr. Handy was honored by being named the 2019 Volunteer Clinical Faculty Awardee by UVA’s Alpha Omega Alpha. It is given annually to a volunteer clinical faculty member for excellence in clinical mentorship. </p><p> The nomination for Dr. Handy might just be the best description of this unconventional doctor that can be assembled: </p><p> “Dr. Handy embodies the commitment to education, compassion and service that Alpha Omega Alpha (AOA) society strives for its members to embody. I spent one month working with Dr. Handy during my family medicine rotation caring for the under-served patients of Abingdon in rural Southwest Virginia. Despite a busy practice where we saw 30+ patients everyday in addition to numerous house visits, Dr. Handy provided me the platform to develop my critical thinking skills by giving me the independence to create plans for patients. At end of every shift, he would assess gaps in my knowledge with the simple statement “tell me about x,” and would spend the next hour filling in the gaps. Furthermore, in a primary care climate where every clinic visit is scheduled to be ten minutes long; he emphasized the importance of compassion by giving me the flexibility in the amount of time I spent with patients listening to fascinating stories about their lives and their lost loved ones. Dr. Handy also ensured that patients treated me with respect. I distinctly remember an occasion when he was quick to provide education to a patient who made a racially insensitive comment in reference to me. Unsurprisingly, the utmost respect in which I hold Dr. Handy is shared by all students that I have encountered who have worked with him. As such, I strongly believe he is a deserving candidate of the AOA Volunteer faculty award.”</p><p> Dr. Handy is also a 2014 winner of the Carl and Ruth Looney Humanitarian Award granted by the Emory & Henry Alumni Association.</p><p> Mark finished at Emory & Henry with a Bachelor of Science degree in Biology, and graduated from East Carolina School of Medicine and the ETSU Family Residency Program. He is a family medicine practitioner in Abingdon, Virginia. He serves on the Board of Directors for the Carter Family Fold in Hiltons, Virginia, the ISHN Board of Quality Assurance, is Medical Director of Hometown Hospice, and is Medical Director for Intrepid Home Health. He received the Board of Governors for East Carolina University School of Medicine. He is President and CEO of Abingdon Medical Arts, President and CEO of Triple H Farms of Alleghany, President and CEO of William M. Handy, MD, PC, and Associate Professor of Medicine at University of Virginia. He is a past winner of the Teacher of the Year Award at UVA, the Resident Teacher Award, and was named Medical Director of the Year for Emergency Medical Services. He is an accomplished banjo player and champion clogger, and is a member of Mountain Park Old Time Band and Tune Town Band, which won Vocal Group of the Year at Blue Ridge Acoustic Uprising in 2014.</p><blockquote type="cite"/></div><a href="/live/profiles/2655-mark-handy" class="link-with-arrow gold">Keep reading</a></div>
- <span class="lw_item_thumb"><a href="/live/profiles/1748-brian-wolfe" title="Brian Wolfe" aria-label="Brian Wolfe"><img src="/live/image/gid/68/width/345/height/225/crop/1/src_region/0,0,600,771/3168_brian_wolfe.rev.1518208834.jpg" alt="Brian Wolfe" title="Brian Wolfe" class="lw_image" width="345" height="225" data-max-w="600" data-max-h="771"/></a></span><div class="lw_widget_text"><h4 class="lw_profiles_headline"><a href="/live/profiles/1748-brian-wolfe"><p> “I wholeheartedly believe in approaching a patient’s care as a partnership.”</p><p> –Dr. Brian Wolfe, ’97</p></a></h4><div class="lw_profiles_description"><div class="container"><div class="row"><div class="col-xs-8 col-sm-9"><div class="row"><div class="col-sm-5" id="clinicalLocinfo"><p> Brian Wolfe graduated from E&H in 1997. He received his medical degree from Johns Hopkins University in 2001. He has been on the teaching faculty for Temple University Hospital and Vanderbilt University Medical Center. He is now affiliated with the University of Colorado Hospital in Aurora, Colorado. He interned at Dartmouth-Hitchcock Medical Center Program, and was Chief Resident, Internal Medicine, in 2005. </p><p> Dr. Wolfe has received the AANP Advocate State Award for Excellence, awarded for promoting the role of the nurse practitioner. He has received the Excellence in Clinical Innovation from the University Colorado Hospital Medical Staff for development of a post-graduate training program for physician assistants and nurse practitioners in hospital-based medicine. He received the Temple University Junior Faculty Residency Teaching Award. And in 2007, he received the award for Best Patient Advocate to the Vanderbilt University Emergency Department.<br/><br/> Brian’s philosophy about medicine is a personal one: “I wholeheartedly believe in approaching a patient’s care as a partnership. When a person is admitted to the hospital, this can be a stressful and disorienting experience. My role in the physician-patient partnership is to 1) understand a patient’s concerns and who he is she is as a person, 2) bring state-of-the-art care to the bedside, 3) communicate with the patient, the family, and the patient’s other physicians in a high level and meaningful manner.”<br/></p></div></div></div></div></div></div><a href="/live/profiles/1748-brian-wolfe" class="link-with-arrow gold">Keep reading</a></div>
- <span class="lw_item_thumb"><a href="/live/profiles/12-" title="Jason Jones" aria-label="Jason Jones"><img src="/live/image/gid/2/width/345/height/225/crop/1/src_region/0,0,1000,666/20_50e7f6e024ddf954897b5c198cf66106_f51611.rev.1490707161.jpg" alt="Jason Jones" title="Jason Jones" class="lw_image" width="345" height="225" srcset="/live/image/scale/2x/gid/2/width/345/height/225/crop/1/src_region/0,0,1000,666/20_50e7f6e024ddf954897b5c198cf66106_f51611.rev.1490707161.jpg 2x" data-max-w="1000" data-max-h="666"/></a></span><div class="lw_widget_text"><h4 class="lw_profiles_headline"><a href="/live/profiles/12-"><p> Jason Jones (’12) Giving Hope to At-Risk Children</p></a></h4><div class="lw_profiles_description"><p> In a school district where the failure rate is very high and the pass rate is very low, Jason Jones is making a difference.</p><p> The 2012 Emory & Henry graduate is giving hope every day to at-risk children in San Antonio, Texas, hundreds of miles from his hometown in Greeneville, Tenn., where he teaches K-5 music during the day and, after school, directs the choir and orchestra, teaches music memory, and advises the yearbook staff.</p><p> And, he’s doing it one note at a time.</p><p> Two years ago, Jones introduced orchestra music to students at Highlands Hills Elementary School, the only one among 54 schools in the district that has an orchestra program.</p><p> The results have been astounding.</p><p> “I’ve seen students who were not motivated to be in school. I’ve seen students who were making low grades and poor choices,” said Jones.</p><p> “After a fifth-grade student joined the orchestra, she got involved in school. She became a school patrol; she went on to middle school where she continued to take music. She’s taken all honor classes—just because she was in the orchestra. It changed her life, and it’s changing the lives of other students.”</p><p> Following college graduation, Jones completed a two-year position with Teach for America at Highland Hills Elementary School. When his two-year position was completed, he was asked to stay.</p><p> Jones said he was among 54,000 applicants when he applied for the Teach for America position in 2012. The organization only accepted 5,000 teachers that year and only 100 of them were placed in San Antonio.</p><p> No doubt about it, he’s making his mark on education.</p><p> Jones witnessed more affluent schools in the district enjoying generous budgets while his school did not have the money for extra music programs.</p><p> “I didn’t think it was fair that students in the richer part of the city got to learn these instruments and my students on the south side of San Antonio in a poor neighborhood didn’t have those same opportunities,” Jones said. “Nearly 100 percent of the children eat free and reduced lunches. They can’t afford instruments or music lessons. Some of their parents work as many as four jobs.”</p><p> He couldn’t help but think back to the conversations that took place in Dr. Julia Wilson’s sociology classroom when he was a student. “Fighting for the less fortunate people who don’t know how to help themselves really stuck with me.”</p><p> So, instead of complaining, he and a middle school orchestra teacher applied for a grant to receive help. Their school was awarded a $10,000 grant from San Antonio Independent School District Foundation (SAISD), which paid for 20 instruments for the students in 2012. Two years later, the school received another $500 for upkeep costs to the instruments.</p><p> “I will be applying for another grant this coming school year because I should have 35 to 40 students in orchestra,” he said.</p><p> Before Jones received the grant money, he was paying for music supplies out of his own pocket. “There’s no extra pay or stipends for running the orchestra program. I just call it a love for teaching,” said Jones, who learned Spanish on his own so that he could teach six Spanish classes at the school.</p><p> When his co-worker became ill, Jones took over the program. “I’d never taken a strings course; I don’t play violin, cello or bass. “I concentrated in voice and piano at Emory & Henry, but, I was given the music education skills at Emory & Henry to be able to teach strings.”</p><p> Jones also has organized a student choir at the school. “The first year I had 12 students in choir class, now I have 85 or more. I’m also adding a hand bells choir next year.”</p><p> Perhaps the most exciting news is that all of Jones’ orchestra students passed standardized tests this year, and 90 percent of his fifth-grade choir students passed the tests.</p><p> His work at the school seems never-ending.</p><p> Jones started after-school clubs at the school, one of which is a music memory academic club that meets once a week for third-through-fifth-grade students. “We study scores of classical pieces. They have to memorize and learn every piece, who wrote it, when they wrote it, and the names of large and small works,” he explained. His students entered a regional competition this year and nearly all of the students placed.</p><p> In addition, he received a grant to organize a year book club, allowing the school to publish its first year book in 30 years.</p><p> Jones is earning a second master’s degree from the University of Texas at San Antonio where he received the Presidential Scholarship from the College of Liberal and Fine Arts. He also received the Dashnell Endowment Scholarship for which he was the first elementary focus to receive.</p><p> He is being mentored by the nation’s leading expert on a Dalcroze Eurythmics at UTSA, a developmental approach to enhance musical expression and understanding for students of all ages.</p><p> He is an active member of the San Antonio Teachers’ Alliance (campus representative), the Texas State Teachers’ Association (regional and state delegate), the American Federation of Teachers, National Education Association, and the Texas Music Educators’ Association. For two years, he has been a 2012 corps member for the San Antonio Region of Teach for America. </p><p> One of his best pieces of advice to future teachers:</p><blockquote> I teach my students how to be thinkers. I learned at Emory & Henry to be a thinker, not a follower or just a doer, but instead a thinker and a leader. And that’s what I want my students to learn.</blockquote></div><a href="/live/profiles/12-" class="link-with-arrow gold">Keep reading</a></div>
- <span class="lw_item_thumb"><a href="/live/profiles/1815-christina-druen" title="Christina Druen" aria-label="Christina Druen"><img src="/live/image/gid/68/width/345/height/225/crop/1/src_region/233,0,1593,1361/3301_IMG_2692.rev.1518713658.JPG" alt="Christina Druen" title="Christina Druen" class="lw_image" width="345" height="225" srcset="/live/image/scale/2x/gid/68/width/345/height/225/crop/1/src_region/233,0,1593,1361/3301_IMG_2692.rev.1518713658.JPG 2x, /live/image/scale/3x/gid/68/width/345/height/225/crop/1/src_region/233,0,1593,1361/3301_IMG_2692.rev.1518713658.JPG 3x" data-max-w="2048" data-max-h="1361"/></a></span><div class="lw_widget_text"><h4 class="lw_profiles_headline"><a href="/live/profiles/1815-christina-druen"><p> And on top of all this….she can really sing!</p></a></h4><div class="lw_profiles_description"><div> Christina Druen currently works as a graphic designer for K-VA-T Food Stores, Inc. In this role, she creates various print materials, social media graphics, videos and other materials for the Food City stores and events they sponsor including the Food City Family Race Night, Food City 500/300, and their Annual Golf Tournament. Before coming to K-VA-T, Christina worked as a Marketing & Design Coordinator for Southwest Virginia Community Health Systems (SVCHS) where she aided in the re-branding of the organization, designed print materials and helped manage their website and social media. Right before graduation, she landed a job working for a NASCAR K&N team, Martin-McClure Racing as their Public Relations Representative. In this role, she managed the team’s social media accounts, escorted drivers to all appearances and helped manage the “Racing for 90.7 and Emory & Henry” project. Simultaneously, she worked for Dogwood Marketing located in Abingdon, Virginia, as a graphic designer and sales representative before coming to SVCHS. </div><div><br/> In her spare time, Christina works as a Marketing & Design Consultant to help smaller local businesses and non-profits with their marketing needs. She has completed work for Family Promise of Bristol, Garic Stephens and Lavelle Manufacturing, Borderline Billiards, Apple Ridge Photography, First Bank & Trust, Emory & Henry College, Clinch Valley Printing, and more. </div><div><br/> Christina also serves as a board member for the American Advertising Federation of Southwest Virginia. As the Communications Team Leader, her responsibilities include getting information out about their events, managing and updating their website, creating graphics and content for their social media platforms, writing press releases, creating email campaigns and aiding in planning events. </div><div><br/> During her time at Emory & Henry, Christina worked as an Events and Operations Intern for the Academy of Country Music in Los Angeles, California, and a Volunteer Captain for the Annual Academy of Country Music Awards in Los Vegas. She also interned for a popular local band, Annabelle’s Curse, as well as Family Promise of Bristol as their Communications Intern. On campus, she was the Director of EHC-TV, President of Alpha Psi Omega, President of the E&H Choral Department, Treasurer and Founding Member of the AAF Student Chapter, Business Manager of the Whitetopper, Manager of The Sphinx, House Manager and Volunteer Coordinator for the McGlothlin Center for the Arts, Graphic Design Intern for the Admissions Office, and Writer for The Odyssey Online. </div><div><br/> Christina resides in Abingdon, VA. When she’s not working, you can catch her at Borderline Billiards bar-tending and shooting pool. </div></div><a href="/live/profiles/1815-christina-druen" class="link-with-arrow gold">Keep reading</a></div>
- <span class="lw_item_thumb"><a href="/live/profiles/1746-cathy-cuskey-large" title="Cathy Large" aria-label="Cathy Large"><img src="/live/image/gid/68/width/345/height/225/crop/1/src_region/201,93,535,426/3153_cuskey_large.rev.1518207527.jpg" alt="Cathy Cuskey Large" title="Cathy Cuskey Large" class="lw_image" width="345" height="225" data-max-w="604" data-max-h="453"/></a></span><div class="lw_widget_text"><h4 class="lw_profiles_headline"><a href="/live/profiles/1746-cathy-cuskey-large"/></h4><div class="lw_profiles_description"><p> Cathy Cuskey Large (’93) used to avoid physics like the plague: so, of course, she is now flourishing as a Medical Physicist.</p><p> “I took physics in high school and just hated it. But I had a teacher at Virginia Highlands Community College who made me love it.”</p><p> So she transferred to Emory & Henry, graduated with a major in physics and a minor in math, and then headed to UT for a master’s in physics. While there she ventured into the engineering department to explore a more applications-based area of physics (less theoretic), and that’s where she first heard about medical physics. She’s never looked back.</p><p> She has worked at the clinic level where she had to implement logistics necessary to make it safe for cancer patients and health workers to be around radiation treatment. “We even have to take into consideration someone who might be working on the roof on a given day.”</p><p> Her work there involved everything from selecting proper building materials to measuring wall widths. These days she’s working for Phillips Medical as a consultant, and is writing algorithms for the administration of radiation. “It’s a great career, and there aren’t a lot of people doing this – so there are great opportunities for new grads.”</p></div><a href="/live/profiles/1746-cathy-cuskey-large" class="link-with-arrow gold">Keep reading</a></div>
- <span class="lw_item_thumb"><a href="/live/profiles/701-" title="Will Wadlington" aria-label="Will Wadlington"><img src="/live/image/gid/2/width/345/height/225/crop/1/src_region/0,0,411,441/351_22190fabaa5cf5891f3c9f97021a2c3b_f7834.rev.1500384865.jpg" alt="Will Wadlington" title="Will Wadlington" class="lw_image" width="345" height="225" data-max-w="411" data-max-h="441"/></a></span><div class="lw_widget_text"><h4 class="lw_profiles_headline"><a href="/live/profiles/701-"><p> Salad Days </p></a></h4><div class="lw_profiles_description"><p> Will Wadlington (’08) recently shared a little tidbit:</p><p> “You may like to know I just accepted a new position as Lettuce Breeder, fyi.”</p><p> How could we not have follow up questions??</p><p> He recently defended his Ph. D. work in Plant Biology at the University of Illinois, and his current research is on spinach sex chromosomes. Working at Everglades Research & Education Center, Dr. Wadlington says they are doing research to determine how plants control whether they are male or female. “We don’t really know how plants do that, so I’m researching how spinach (my specialty) and also papaya use sex chromosomes to have male or female plants. It’s basic research to figure out how botany works.”</p><p> Turns out there’s an advantage to being able to change the sex of spinach: “I developed a variety of spinach that makes YY spinach (not XX not XY but with two Y’s). Breeders use those for seed production to make the most pollen.”</p><p> His next post-doc job will be working with lettuce. In particular, he’s looking at making lettuce more disease-resistant. “Lettuce in the field gets pathogens sometimes and it can ruin a crop or make them ugly. We are finding varieties that are resistant to common diseases so we can then breed naturally occurring resistance genes into major lines.”</p><p> The hope is for less food waste and higher quality produce – which is great for growers, but also for the environment. “Disease-resistant lettuce requires fewer chemical sprays when cultivated, so it’s cheaper to produce, better for the environment, and great for the people that work in the fields and eat salads.”</p><p> Let-us all hope for Will’s success.</p></div><a href="/live/profiles/701-" class="link-with-arrow gold">Keep reading</a></div>
- <span class="lw_item_thumb"><a href="/live/profiles/1433-toni-atkins" title="Toni Atkins" aria-label="Toni Atkins"><img src="/live/image/gid/68/width/345/height/225/crop/1/src_region/0,56,800,857/2267_Toni_Atkins.rev.1516131104.jpg" alt="Toni Atkins" title="Toni Atkins" class="lw_image" width="345" height="225" srcset="/live/image/scale/2x/gid/68/width/345/height/225/crop/1/src_region/0,56,800,857/2267_Toni_Atkins.rev.1516131104.jpg 2x" data-max-w="800" data-max-h="1054"/></a></span><div class="lw_widget_text"><h4 class="lw_profiles_headline"><a href="/live/profiles/1433-toni-atkins"><p> Toni Atkins is the leader of the California Senate – and is the first woman to hold this position.</p></a></h4><div class="lw_profiles_description"><p> Toni Atkins, E&H ’84, recently made history by becoming the first woman to serve as president pro Tempore of the California Senate. She has served as interim Mayor of San Diego, and was Governor of California for nine hours in 2014 – making her California’s first openly gay governor, and it also landed her a spot on the Jimmy Kimmel talk show.</p><p> </p><p> Below is an article by Lisa Renner written for Capitol Weekly in 2017:</p><p> State Sen. Toni Atkins has come a long way since she was a girl growing up poor without running water in rural Virginia.</p><p> This month, the San Diego lawmaker is set to replace Kevin de León as leader of the California Senate. She will be the first woman and first open lesbian to hold the position. She also will be the first person since the 19<sup>th</sup> century to hold both of the Legislature’s top jobs – Assembly speaker and Senate leader.</p><blockquote><p> “She came with a sense of wanting to make a difference but didn’t think she could make a difference because of her background.” — Stephen Fisher </p></blockquote><p> Atkins, 55, is a real coal miner’s daughter who grew up in a house without indoor plumbing or running water, and her mother cooked on a wood stove, according to her college professor and close friend Stephen Fisher. When Atkins and her family moved to the city of Roanoke, she was teased for her hillbilly accent.</p><div id="div-gpt-ad-1395717372217-22_container" class="idm_ad_unit"/><p> </p><p> Only two others have served as both Assembly speaker and Senate leader — Ransom Burnell (Assembly Speaker in 1861 and Senate pro Tem in 1864) and James T. Farley (Assembly speaker in 1856 and Senate pro Tem in 1871-1872), said Alex Vassar, author of <em>California Lawmaker: The Men and Women of the California State Legislature.</em></p><p> Fisher recalls that when she arrived at Emory & Henry College, where she ultimately majored in political science, she had a lot of “anger and shame” about her upbringing. “She came with a sense of wanting to make a difference but didn’t think she could make a difference because of her background,” he said.</p><p> But as she grew more comfortable, she became more confident in her skin. She was part of a group of students who asked Fisher to teach a course on feminism. He agreed if the students would help him create the course, including decided what texts do use and how the class would be structured. “It was a transformative experience for all of us,” he said, adding that Atkins wasn’t the only participant who went on to have great success in professional life.</p><p> Atkins also showed courage by helping arrange for a visit to campus by lesbian folk singer Holly Near in the early 1980s when the college “was not a safe place to come out in,” Fisher said.</p><blockquote><p> Atkins was elected to the state Assembly in 2010. becoming Speaker of the Assembly in 2014. </p></blockquote><p> But Fisher said he had no idea back then that Atkins would end up where she is now. “I knew that she was going to do well but I had no notion that she was going into public work.”</p><p> Atkins ended up continuing her education at the John F. Kennedy School of Government at Harvard University before relocating to San Diego in 1985.</p><p> She initially served as director of clinic services of Womancare Health Center but soon began working for then San Diego City Councilmember Christine Kehoe, the city’s first openly gay elected official. Atkins’ first jump into elected office came on the San Diego City Council in 2000, when she replaced Kehoe after Kehoe moved on to the state Legislature.</p><p> Atkins was herself elected to the state Assembly in 2010. becoming Speaker of the Assembly in 2014. She set her priorities as access to health care, affordable housing and educational opportunities.</p><p> Among her achievements was getting the bipartisan support for a $7.5 billion water bond approved by voters in 2014. “That was a clear example of her leadership because folks believed it could not be done,” said Assemblymember Shirley Weber of San Diego.</p><blockquote><p> “She has that coal miner’s daughter perspective that comes out of that environment.” — Shirley Weber </p></blockquote><p> Weber also credits Atkins with getting her to run for office. Weber was recently retired after a long career as a professor of Africana studies at San Diego State University when Atkins asked her to consider running for the Assembly.</p><p> When Weber won the election and joined the Assembly in 2012, it was Atkins who opened doors for her and helped her make the transition. “She said I will help you do this and she did,” Weber said. “Other people say I’ll help you and you can’t find them. They don’t do anything for you.”</p><p> Weber said she is impressed that Atkins has been able to rise so far while keeping her dignity and maintaining her integrity.</p><p> “She has that coal miner’s daughter perspective that comes out of that environment,” she said. “You don’t get out of that environment if you don’t take what you have, make it better, learn from strengths and minimize your weaknesses.”</p><p> Atkins was elected to the state Senate in 2016 and was able to get all 12 bills she sent to the governor, signed and approved. In her December newsletter, she said she is especially proud of Senate Bill 2, which creates a permanent funding source for affordable housing and Senate Bill 179, which requires the state to legally recognize “nonbinary” as a gender for people who do not identify as male or female.</p><p> Rick Zbur, executive director for Equality California, said Atkins is one of the best advocates for the state’s lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer community. He applauded her upcoming advance to leadership of the senate.</p><p> “It’s important that she has shattered yet another glass ceiling,” he said. “These kinds of achievements are important for LBGTQ people because we have been historically underrepresented in government.”</p><p> Through it all, she remembers her Virginia roots. She invited Cameron Chase, a 20-year-old Emory & Henry student, to Sacramento for a three-week internship with her earlier this year. “Sen. Atkins is literally so down to earth and so kind and generous,” he said.</p><p> In a 2014 statement to the Washington Post, Atkins reflected on her rise from poverty to high office in California. “What that says about our opportunities as Americans and our democracy is profound.”</p></div><a href="/live/profiles/1433-toni-atkins" class="link-with-arrow gold">Keep reading</a></div>
- <span class="lw_item_thumb"><a href="/live/profiles/708-" title="Mary Beth Tignor" aria-label="Mary Beth Tignor"><img src="/live/image/gid/2/width/345/height/225/crop/1/src_region/0,0,300,200/358_MaryBethTignor.rev.1500388800.jpg" alt="Mary Beth Tignor" title="Mary Beth Tignor" class="lw_image" width="345" height="225" data-max-w="300" data-max-h="200"/></a></span><div class="lw_widget_text"><h4 class="lw_profiles_headline"><a href="/live/profiles/708-"><p> Love for the region keeps Mary Beth Tignor’s future local. </p></a></h4><div class="lw_profiles_description"><p> Her love of this region and her passion for education are the fuel to her daily work. </p><p> Mary Beth was a part of the first Emory & Henry Honors Program cohort that graduated in Spring 2013. She graduated with a Bachelor of Science in Environmental Studies and a Bachelor of Arts in Public Policy and Community Service. Currently, she is working as an AmeriCorps with Appalachian Sustainable Development and pursuing a Master’s degree in Education with a focus area of Middle School Science. </p><p> Serving the community of this region has always been one of Mary Beth’s passion and love. As a student at Emory & Henry, she served as a volunteer of an on-campus after school program called Highlands Project. She said, “Through this program and some of my courses, I developed a passion for education and the children in this area.” Since then, she has created and is the current coordinator of a after school program at a local elementary school. Her most memorable experience in the Honors Program is going to New York City as an upperclassman leader with First-Year Honors Scholars. After her first trip to New York City, Mary Beth had learned a lot from her experiences and really enjoyed sharing them with the First-Year Honors Scholars. </p></div><a href="/live/profiles/708-" class="link-with-arrow gold">Keep reading</a></div>
- <span class="lw_item_thumb"><a href="/live/profiles/1840-adam-taylor" title="Adam Taylor" aria-label="Adam Taylor"><img src="/live/image/gid/68/width/345/height/225/crop/1/src_region/535,58,1256,781/3315_Adam_Taylor.rev.1519072284.jpg" alt="Adam Taylor" title="Adam Taylor" class="lw_image" width="345" height="225" srcset="/live/image/scale/2x/gid/68/width/345/height/225/crop/1/src_region/535,58,1256,781/3315_Adam_Taylor.rev.1519072284.jpg 2x, /live/image/scale/3x/gid/68/width/345/height/225/crop/1/src_region/535,58,1256,781/3315_Adam_Taylor.rev.1519072284.jpg 3x" data-max-w="1280" data-max-h="853"/></a></span><div class="lw_widget_text"><h4 class="lw_profiles_headline"><a href="/live/profiles/1840-adam-taylor"><p> Adam Taylor is director of the Catawba Sustainability Center.</p></a></h4><div class="lw_profiles_description"><p> Adam Taylor is the manager of the <a href="http://vtrc.vt.edu/Catawba_Sustainability_Center0.html">Catawba Sustainability Center</a>, which is situated on a 377-acre property in the Catawba Valley and is devoted to environmental education activities.</p><p> The center is a collaboration between Outreach and International Affairs, Virginia Cooperative Extension, and Roanoke County.</p><p> Adam previously worked at the West Virginia Farmers Market Association, a statewide organization in West Virginia, where he worked to support and grow West Virginia’s local food economy through project development and management, stakeholder outreach, and policy change.</p><p> Adam also carried out a two-year assignment with the Peace Corps as a forestry Extension agent in Zambia and a yearlong internship on the 100-plus-acre organic farm owned by Dr. Stephen Hopp, Environmental Studies instructor at Emory & Henry, and author Barbara Kingsolver. The farm is highlighted in the book <strong><em>Animal, Vegetable, Miracle: A Year of Food Life.</em></strong></p><p> A native of Tazewell, Virginia, Taylor earned his bachelor’s degree in environmental studies from Emory & Henry College in 2008 and a master’s degree in agriculture from Oklahoma State in 2014.</p><p> One of the projects that Taylor oversees at the Catawba Sustainability Center is a wetlands restoration project, which received a $15,000 grant from the Dominion Foundation.</p><p> The center, in collaboration with Virginia Tech and <a href="http://www.wetlandrestorationandtraining.com/">Wetland Restoration and Training</a>, plans to do three things:</p><ul><li>restore at least three wetlands in an effort to enhance a biologically diverse habitat for sensitive and endangered plant and animal species </li><li>improve water quality of Catawba Creek </li><li>train professionals in wetland design and restoration using techniques that can be replicated to restore wetlands in diverse environments. </li></ul></div><a href="/live/profiles/1840-adam-taylor" class="link-with-arrow gold">Keep reading</a></div>
- <span class="lw_item_thumb"><a href="/live/profiles/2547-christian-tripp" title="Christian Tripp" aria-label="Christian Tripp"><img src="/live/image/gid/68/width/345/height/225/crop/1/src_region/0,0,855,832/6009_tripp.rev.1551228791.jpg" alt="Christian Tripp" title="Christian Tripp" class="lw_image" width="345" height="225" srcset="/live/image/scale/2x/gid/68/width/345/height/225/crop/1/src_region/0,0,855,832/6009_tripp.rev.1551228791.jpg 2x" data-max-w="855" data-max-h="832"/></a></span><div class="lw_widget_text"><h4 class="lw_profiles_headline"><a href="/live/profiles/2547-christian-tripp"><p> Christian Tripp is honing his acting craft.</p></a></h4><div class="lw_profiles_description"><p> Christian Tripp (E&H ’18) finished up his senior year at Emory & Henry in the usual way: plenty of studying, time with friends, and a ton of theater auditions. Well….maybe everyone doesn’t finish out college with auditions, but you do if you’re a theater major.</p><p> To his delight, he was offered several jobs. Instead of stressing about finding a job, he was worried about how to choose between many great options. So he gave himself a deadline. “I told myself I would pick one on Friday. On Thursday I got emailed by the head of acting from the University of Alabama. He asked to see my audition package, I sent it via email, and the next day he gave me a full ride scholarship.”<br/><br/> He has also been offered two summer acting positions — one in Flagstaff, Arizona with the Flagstaff Shakespeare Festival (he’ll be Daniel De Bosola in <em>Duchess of Malfi</em>) and another in Camden, Maine with Camden Shakespeare Festival (he’s playing Horatio in <em>Hamlet</em> and Lucentio in <em>Taming of the Shrew</em>). So in the summer of 2019, he’ll be playing three supporting leads. Then he’ll head back to Alabama to start his second year of graduate school.<br/><br/> Christian is a true success story for the E&H theater department, and he’s grateful for the experiences he gained as an undergraduate.”I feel that my time at Emory & Henry really prepared me to handle anything. I will be playing pretty heavy roles this summer back to back to back, and normally someone might pause at that. For me I see it as a great challenge I’m more than capable of handling.”</p></div><a href="/live/profiles/2547-christian-tripp" class="link-with-arrow gold">Keep reading</a></div>
- <span class="lw_item_thumb"><a href="/live/profiles/2707-meg-hathaway-retinger" title="Meg Retinger" aria-label="Meg Retinger"><img src="/live/image/gid/68/width/345/height/225/crop/1/src_region/0,0,320,320/6405_meg_retinger.rev.1558721713.jpg" alt="Meg Hathaway Retinger" title="Meg Hathaway Retinger" class="lw_image" width="345" height="225" data-max-w="320" data-max-h="320"/></a></span><div class="lw_widget_text"><h4 class="lw_profiles_headline"><a href="/live/profiles/2707-meg-hathaway-retinger"><p> She’s number 1 in the number 2 business: Meg Retinger is COO of Bio Pet Laboratories in Knoxville.</p></a></h4><div class="lw_profiles_description"><p> Meg Hathaway Retinger graduated from Emory & Henry in 1976 with a plan to teach elementary school. But when she was faced with a crowded field of educators, and too few job openings, she headed in a different direction.</p><p> She began by doing computer work in an industry that created “bug zappers” and electric cattle fencing. Eventually she segued into a company that did testing to see if cattle had been properly inseminated for breeding. And now….well…now she finds herself elbow deep in dog poop.</p><p> Meg is the Chief Operating Officer (COO) for <a href="http://www.biopetlabs.com/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">Bio Pet Laboratories</a> in Knoxville. The main component of their business is a program called PooPrints®; evaluating DNA in dog poop so that apartment complexes know which tenants are not picking up after their pets. Dog owners swab the cheeks of their dogs, and the apartment landlords send the swabs to Bio Pet to be registered in a database –DNA World Pet Registry. If a pile of poop is found where it shouldn’t be, it can be collected and sent to Bio Pet to be matched up with the dog owner – or, as Meg calls that person, “The Poopetrator.”</p><p> Bio Pet is now serving clients all over the U.S., Canada, and Europe. They receive as many as 2000 swabs a day, and receive 200 poop samples a day.</p><p> Meg says the two biggest issues apartment complexes deal with are parking and dog waste. And in addition to being unsightly, it is also a huge environmental issue as it affects the water runoff and eventually the regional watersheds. “People think that dog poop is just fertilizer, but because of what dogs eat, their poop has more bacteria than human waste.”</p><p> She says her E&H education taught her how to learn – and instilled a desire to learn. So when her initial career plans got sidetracked, she was flexible and found a new way to apply her degree.</p><p> In short, Meg knows her poop.</p></div><a href="/live/profiles/2707-meg-hathaway-retinger" class="link-with-arrow gold">Keep reading</a></div>