Official Newsletter of the Marshall University Alumni Association | April 2022
Diversity – Integrity – Loyalty – Pride – Respect
Welcome to Awards Season
Each winter and early spring, we are inundated with award shows for everything from film to television to sports to popular music.

Whether hoisting an Oscar, kissing an Emmy, celebrating a Golden Globe, or rocking out with a Grammy, this time of year is traditionally reserved for recognizing the best and most accomplished in a particular discipline.

Of course, here at Marshall University we are no different.

Each spring, the Marshall University Alumni Association rolls out the green carpet for outstanding alumni, supporters, faculty and students of Marshall. And, after two years on the sideline due to the pandemic, the 83rd version of the annual Alumni Awards Banquet will return to life this weekend recognizing people who have truly made a difference in their professions, in their local communities and right here at Marshall University.

Please take the time to read more about these wonderful sons and daughters of Marshall in the stories below. And if you know someone who is deserving of consideration for an alumni award, you can easily make a nomination at Congratulations to all of this years honorees!

Enjoy reading this edition of Sons & Daughters. GO HERD!

MU Office of Alumni Relations
Five finalists for Marshall University provost named
Following a national search and initial off-site interviews, the Marshall University Provost Search Committee has identified five finalists who visited the Huntington campus last week to meet with the university community.

The five finalists are as follows:

Dr. Phillip Bridgmon, Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs, University of Central Missouri

Dr. Avinandan Mukherjee, Interim Provost and Senior Vice President for Academic Affairs, Marshall University

Dr. John Griffin, Senior Associate Provost, Clemson University

Dr. Ni “Phil” He, Professor of Criminology and Criminal Justice and Vice Provost of Faculty Diversity, Northeastern University

Dr. Jacqueline Edmonson, Chancellor and Chief Academic Officer, Penn State Greater Allegheny

Herd officially joins Sun Belt Conference
The departure of Marshall, Old Dominion and Southern Miss from Conference USA to the Sun Belt Conference has been finalized.

All three schools will play in the Sun Belt for the 2022 football season. The Sun Belt Conference will be a 14-member league next season, also adding James Madison University in recent months.

Marshall will compete in the SBC East Division with Appalachian State, Coastal Carolina, Georgia Southern, Georgia State, James Madison and Old Dominion. The SBC West Division will be made up of Arkansas State, Louisiana Lafayette, Louisiana Monroe, South Alabama, Texas State and Troy.

#HerdHomecoming slated for October 29
Marshall University will welcome alumni, family and friends back to campus for its annual Homecoming celebration culminating with the Homecoming game on Saturday, October 29 against new Sun Belt Conference foe Coastal Carolina University.

The event will accompany dozens of activities throughout the week, including the annual parade, bonfire, Picnic on the Plaza, Stampede 5K, Alumni Tailgate and much more.

Stay tuned over the coming months as we unveil the full schedule of activities.
University deepens commitment to sustainability by joining AASHE
Marshall University has recently joined the Association for the Advancement of Sustainability in Higher Education (AASHE) to further its efforts toward building a thriving, equitable and ecologically just world. Through membership, the university will receive support in advancing its sustainability initiatives throughout the institution and in the community.

“The Marshall University Sustainability Department has been working very hard over the past few years to implement circular programs that focus on people, planet and profit to increase sustainability on campus,” said Amy Parsons-White, sustainability manager at Marshall. “Becoming a member of AASHE allows us to access resources and support systems that will assist in reaching our goals faster and more efficiently.”

Marshall University President Brad D. Smith said the ongoing efforts by the department are on track with the university’s desire to make a positive impact for generations to come.

“We are committed to building a stronger future for our community and the next generation,” Smith said. “The sustainability department’s work is not going unnoticed and our university has a unique opportunity to help make this important work a part of everyone’s agenda to help drive the transformation to a sustainable world.”

Alumni News, Chapters
and Member Benefits
83rd Alumni Awards Banquet
Saturday, April 9, 2022 | Brad D. Smith Foundation Hall
Marshall University and the Marshall University Alumni Association (MUAA) are set to host the 83rd annual Alumni Awards Banquet on Saturday, April 9, beginning at 6 p.m. with a reception followed by dinner and awards at 7 p.m. at the Brad D. Smith Foundation Hall.

The Marshall University Alumni Awards Banquet recognizes outstanding alumni, university supporters and students during an evening of celebration and reverence of the great things being accomplished by the Marshall University alumni community. The event, postponed for the past two years due to the pandemic, will feature awardees who were originally slated to be honored in 2020.
Distinguished Alumnus
Brad D. Smith

As a proud West Virginian with a passion for leadership and philanthropy, Brad D. Smith is focused on helping facilitate change by developing, supporting and investing in people. His devotion to giving back to his home state runs deep, and he is committed to providing educational and economic development resources to the Appalachian region, where many communities have been disproportionately affected by technological and economic change.

During Brad’s 11-year tenure as CEO of Intuit, he was able to transform the company’s business structure from a North American desktop software company to a global cloud-based platform with a portfolio that included TurboTax, QuickBooks and Mint. The transformation was born from an innovation culture built around data-driven decision-making and rapid experimentation. The drive to innovate across all layers of the company transformed the way Intuit was able to serve its consumers, small businesses and partners. This led to record growth that nearly doubled the company’s revenues and increased its stock price more than 500%, and positioned Intuit as the industry leader.

Under his leadership, the company consistently was recognized as one of the world’s best places to work. Intuit placed on the Fortune Best Companies to Work For list each year during his tenure, ranking #13 in the United States and #1 in India, Singapore and Canada in 2017. In 2016, Brad was ranked among the top CEOs in the United States by Fortune magazine, coming in at #6 on their list.

Before his time at Intuit, Brad’s career spanned four industries, including stints at PepsiCo, 7-UP, ADVO and ADP, where he led large, global organizations through turn-around, transformation and high-growth environments. Brad earned his bachelor’s degree in business administration from Marshall University and his master’s degree in management from Aquinas College in Grand Rapids, Mich.

He has served as the executive chairman of the board of Intuit, as chairman of the Nordstrom board and as a board member of Momentive (formerly SurveyMonkey) and Yahoo. Brad’s Wing 2 Wing Foundation, which he co-founded with his wife Alys, provides increased access and support for education, entrepreneurship mentoring and investment, with the goal of unlocking economic and lifestyle prosperity for West Virginia and beyond.

In January, Brad was named the 38th president of Marshall University.
Distinguished Service to Marshall University
Alys Smith

Alys Smith is a successful attorney, generous philanthropist, supportive wife, and loving mother. All who meet Alys can attest to her down-to earth nature, compassionate heart, and indomitable passion for fighting to give a voice to the voiceless.

Specifically, Alys has fought for the rights of women since she herself was a little girl, beginning with protesting her inability to join the boys’ little league on the basis of her gender and more recently working to bring the Women’s Warrior Summit to the strong women of Appalachia.

Alys graduated from The Ohio State University and subsequently Akron School of Law, hoping that her dreams and passions would make a true impact in the world. Whether passionately defending a client in court, mediating conflicts, sharing her creative ideas on women-led nonprofit boards, teaching her daughters what it means to be smart and competent women, or mentoring at-risk youth as a Court Appointed Special Advocate (CASA), Alys’ zest for life and vision of making this world a brighter place shine through every time.

Currently, Alys both serves on the board of the New Opportunity School for Women, which challenges Appalachian women to live their best lives, and co-leads the Wing 2 Wing Foundation with her husband, Brad Smith. Wing 2 Wing focuses on creating opportunities for those in overlooked zip codes, particularly West Virginia and Ohio, and was inspired by her and her husband’s childhood roots in those two states. Alys and Brad have recently left their home in California, where they resided for almost 20 years, to bring their devotion for philanthropy in the areas of education, entrepreneurship, and the environment back to the part of the country they call home.
Outstanding Community Achievement
Cathy Burns

Cathy Burns is the Executive Director of the Huntington Municipal Development Authority, which is the economic development arm of the City of Huntington. The Development Authority aims to transform the landscape of Huntington to create opportunities, jobs and places to gather.

Cathy grew up in nearby Hurricane, West Virginia, and was a first-generation college student when she earned a bachelor’s degree in Criminal Justice from Marshall University in 1983. She earned a Masters in Public Administration from Eastern Kentucky University in 1985.

Prior to her current role, Cathy served three years as City Manager under Huntington Mayor Steve Williams, and, prior to that, helped manage a regional economic development initiative crossing the state boundaries known as the Huntington-Ironton Empowerment Zone.

One of her proudest achievements was being selected to serve as the first female president and CEO of the longstanding Huntington Regional Chamber of Commerce from 2013 to 2016.

Cathy has garnered numerous awards throughout her distinguished career, including being named Wonder Woman of West Virginia Living Magazine in 2019, American Foundation for the Blind Excellence Award in 2018, The Herald-Dispatch Business Innovator of the Year in 2006 and West Virginia Executive Young Gun in 2002.

Cathy and her husband, Dale, have two grown daughters, Katie and Kelsie, and are proud to have raised a family in Huntington. In her 35 years working for the public, Cathy remains as devoted as ever to changing the landscape of the city for the better.
Outstanding Community Achievement
William Kehoe

A graduate of Marshall University with a Masters in Economics in 1973, William Joseph Kehoe, or Bill, as he is known by his friends and family, has a record of distinguished service to his community and to national organizations.

Having spent the better part of the past 50 years in academics, Bill is presently the William F. O’Dell Emeritus Professor of Commerce at the McIntire School of Commerce at the University of Virginia.

Since the late 1960s, Bill has taught the world of business to bright young minds at institutions around the world—including right here at Marshall. While earning his degree, Bill was an assistant professor of business in Huntington, before moving on to serve at schools in Kentucky, Illinois, Virginia and even The Netherlands. Bill remains active both at the University of Virginia, and right here at Marshall, serving on the Advisory Board for the new Doctorate of Business Administration program in the Lewis College of Business.

In his community of Charlottesville, Virginia, Bill has served as chair on nearly a dozen local organizations and on just as many boards in his community. For his work in these areas, he received the Distinguished Leadership Award from the National Association for Community Leadership. He has also earned accolades in other areas including a Lifetime Achievement Award in 2021 and the Paul Goodloe McIntire Citizenship Award in 2016, in addition to countless awards in the areas of research and teaching.

A former military member in the United States Marine Corp, and an avid recreational pilot, Bill also served the Commonwealth of Virginia on the Virginia Aviation Board, appointed by the Virginia governor, and on Virginia's long-range transportation policy committee.

Today, Bill is an avid fitness walker, reader and private pilot—who can still tell you the full details and statistics of landing and takeoffs at Huntington’s Tri-State Airport.
Distinguished Young Alumnus
Jeff McKay

Born in Ripley, West Virginia, Jeff McKay attended Marshall University in 2006 where he earned his bachelor’s and master’s degrees in sociology. Upon graduation, he began teaching as a sociology instructor at Marshall. Though, Jeff felt the pull to do something different and make a positive change in his community.

An avid fan of consuming different types of beers from around the world and visiting breweries across the country, Jeff was struck by an idea in 2012 while visiting a brewery in Vermont. As he watched communities transform and thrive around craft beer breweries, Jeff had the idea to try something similar here in Huntington. Within a few weeks of that trip, Jeff was introduced to a 250 square foot storefront in Heritage Station that would later become Huntington’s very first craft beer bar.

In 2013, Jeff helped form the Better Beer Coalition, which organizes the popular Rails and Ales Festival, and the Wild and Wonderful Winter Beer Festival in Huntington. Also in 2013, he opened The Tap House, which would later be known by its current name, Summit Beer Station. Recently, Summit Beer Station was named one of the top 50 craft beer bars in the United States by the Brewer’s Association.

Jeff has now turned his focus toward politics to work on changing many of West Virginia’s laws that he feels hold back the service and beverage industries. With the help of many others, he successfully overhauled nearly all of West Virginia’s codes relating to these industries in 2021 and helped ease the burdens of businesses hit hard by the pandemic.
Awards of Distinction
Dr. Robert A. Hess
School of Medicine
Dr. Daniel Collins III
School of Pharmacy
Lee Ann Brammer
College of Health Professions
Bruce Felder
College of Business
Brandon McCoy
College of Arts and Media
Dr. Barbara Guyer
College of Education
David Casto
College of Engineering
Steve Beckelhimer
College of Science
Dr. Kathryn Gutzwiller
College of Liberal Arts
Cam Henderson Scholarship Award: Makena Rauch

Nate Ruffin Scholarship Award: Charity Hightower

Janis Winkfield Scholarship Award: Joelle Williams

Nancy Pelphrey/Herd Village Scholarship Award: Hannah Dorsey

Nancy Pelphrey/Herd Village Scholarship Award: Miranda Pate
Alumni Association announces Chapter of the Year, Emerging Chapter of the Year
Southern Coalfields, Eastern Panhandle alumni chapters honored
The Marshall University Alumni Association has announced the recipients of two of its top awards ahead of the 83rd Alumni Awards Banquet on April 9.

The Marshall University Southern Coalfields Alumni and Big Green Chapter, located in Beckley, West Virginia, has been named MUAA’s 2022 Chapter of the Year, while the Emerging Chapter of the Year award will be presented to Marshall University’s Eastern Panhandle Alumni Chapter based out of Martinsburg, West Virginia, at the annual awards banquet next month.

“Our network of alumni chapters continues to flourish, and we are thrilled to see one of our newer groups rise to the ranks of MUAA Chapter of the Year,” said Kasey Stevens, assistant director of alumni relations at Marshall University. “The Southern Coalfields Chapter conducts numerous events each year and has raised thousands of dollars in scholarship support for students from southern West Virginia. Their passion for supporting the advancement of Marshall University’s goals and objectives is evident in everything they do. The group in the eastern panhandle is off to a strong start thanks to some high-caliber leadership and we have high hopes to see them rise quickly to contest for chapter of the year honors.”

Did you stay in a residence hall as a student?
Hey, Herd Alums! Did you stay in a residence hall during your time on campus? Where did you stay? What made your time living on campus so memorable? Do you still have friendships made while living in a residence hall?

We want to hear your experience!

Share your story with us at the link below and we may feature it on social media.
While we all know that Marshall was founded in 1837, did you know that Marshall was elevated from an academy to Marshall College in 1858, five years before West Virginia became a state?

See more throwback photos and #HerdHistory every week on the Marshall University Alumni Association social media channels @MarshallUAlumni.
Marshall Foundation
News and Updates
What's New in 2022?

Taking a break to think about and document what’s important to you—and why it’s important—can help you connect more deeply with the people and places you hold dear.

However, few people take the time.

Learn more about what top philanthropists do (hint: it's not about money) and other great tips for 2022 in the link below.

Marshall Rises is the university’s largest fundraising effort to date. The comprehensive campaign includes five pillars where support is most needed:

1. Enhancing the Student Experience
2. Expanding Academics and Growing our Reputation
3. Creating an Environment of Innovative Learning
4. Forming a Foundation of Research and Creative Discovery
5. Deepening Community Partnerships

OVP HEALTH gifts $100,000 in support of Brad D. Smith Center for Business and Innovation
The Marshall University Foundation Inc. has announced that OVP Health has pledged a gift of $100,000 in support of the new Brad D. Smith Center for Business and Innovation facility at Marshall University.

The facility is slated to be built in the 1400 block of Fourth Avenue and is scheduled to open in January of 2024.

OVP Health, a Huntington, West Virginia, based company with an extensive range of primary care and addiction treatment facilities in West Virginia, Kentucky, Ohio, South Carolina and Virginia, is led by president and co-founder Robert A. Hess, M.D., FAAFP. Hess said the company is excited to partner with Marshall University in support of the state-of-the-art facility that will bring new economic development and world-class students to the region.

“More than ever before, the economic health, viability and future of Huntington, West Virginia, are tied to Marshall University and its ability to prepare students to meet the growing demands of an ever-changing world,” said Hess.

Steel Dynamics Inc. commits $100,000 toward Brad D. Smith Center for Business and Innovation
The Marshall University Foundation has announced that the Steel Dynamics Inc. Foundation has pledged a gift of $100,000 in support of the new Brad D. Smith Center for Business and Innovation facility at Marshall University.

The state-of-the-art facility is slated to be built in the 1400 block of Fourth Avenue on a plot of land that formerly housed The Flats on 4th apartment complex and is scheduled to open in January of 2024.

The building, which will also serve as a center for the economic development of the region, will provide for conference facilities capable of hosting both small and large business gatherings. Additionally, the building will serve as the hub for student-centric activities, providing students not only with instructional facilities but also facilities encouraging interaction and collaboration.

“The Lewis College of Business at Marshall University has graduated many of our current employees and has proven to be an excellent education provider to the region,” said Chuck Abbott, vice president and general manager at Steel of West Virginia. “Investments in new facilities and equipment will keep those graduates up to date with the ever-changing business world. We believe a better-educated workforce creates a stronger economy with higher living standards and more opportunities for everyone to benefit from it, including those less fortunate.”

Marshall Faculty member receives Fulbright Award

Dr. Kimberly McFall, associate professor of curriculum and instruction at Marshall University, has received a Fulbright Scholar Award to work in Poland at the University of Wroclaw.

McFall said her project will deal with the integration of technology in the K-12 classroom and where technology education needs to be in the post-COVID era. She will survey teachers to determine their perceptions on what they learned about technology in their undergraduate programs, what they didn’t learn, and what they wished they had known when they started teaching. She will use the results of this research to create a Faculty Learning Community at the university in order to develop technology-rich preparation for aspiring teachers.

Marshall forms cyber security partnership with National Guard

Marshall University’s Institute for Cyber Security (ICS) is teaming up with the West Virginia National Guard and Forge Security LLC to enhance cyber security efforts and strengthen the future of cyber security professionals.

The partnership was announced following a “live fire” cyber range training session in Marshall’s Weisberg Applied Engineering Complex. Forge Security conducted the training for the West Virginia National Guard, focusing on industrial control systems. Marshall cyber security students had the opportunity to follow along through the exercise to see how working practitioners respond to these types of attacks.

Free Earth Week activities to focus on 'Invest in the Planet'

After a two-year hiatus, Earth Week will once again be held at Marshall University in Huntington, with a week of lectures, documentaries and activities for people of all ages. The event is free and open to the public.

“We had to miss the 50th anniversary of Earth Day due to COVID-19 concerns, so I would like for this year’s event to make up for the time lost,” said Amy Parsons-White, sustainability manager at Marshall University.

The theme for Earth Week 2022 is Invest in the Planet. Events throughout the week will include talks, demonstrations and teach-ins; however, the main activities will take place on Wednesday, April 20, on the Memorial Student Center Plaza and Buskirk Field from 11 a.m. – 2 p.m., rain or shine.

School of Medicine announces 2022 Match Day results

Fourth-year medical students from the Marshall University Joan C. Edwards School of Medicine found out during the annual Match Day event where they will train for the next three to seven years. A total of 68 students from the Class of 2022 matched to residency programs, representing a 100% match rate for the class.

Coordinated by the National Residency Matching Program (NRMP), the main residency match process uses a computerized mathematical algorithm that pairs the preferences of applicants with the preferences of residency programs, resulting in a best result for graduating students. Marshall students, along with medical students from around the world, all opened their match letters at the same date and time.

MU PerksConnect

The Marshall University Alumni Association is excited to offer a brand new perks program available to all alumni of Marshall University called MU PerksConnect!

The MU PerksConnect portal opens alumni up to a bounty of savings on a variety of offerings, both locally and nationally. Simply register your free account at and immediately start saving on everything from food to travel. MU PerksConnect will use your location to bring you specific savings at stores, restaurants, and more where you live, or visit the national deals to find savings on travel, theme park and event tickets, and much more!

The MU PerksConnect portal also offers handy access to insurance benefits for auto, home and pet and long-term care resources.

If you want to save even more, you can sign up for a free cash back program called Koiyn! Koiyn provides cash back offers at places you already love. Cash back offers are tied directly to your card from participating popular national brands, plus your favorite regional and local retailers too!

Sign up for MU PerksConnect today and start saving!
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