Alumni Governing Board | Shorter University
 

Alumni Governing Board

The Alumni Governing Board is a group of alumni who give of their time through service to the University, as well as financially support the University. They help in leading the Alumni Association and participating in the planning of campus events such as Homecoming and Alumni Association Chapter events, and to encourage contributions intellectually, financially and spiritually to Shorter University.

All Alumni are eligible to be nominated to serve on the Alumni Governing Board. Review the Alumni Governing Board volunteer service outline to learn more about serving as an active member. To nominate a fellow alum or express your interest in serving on the Board, email alumni@nullshorter.edu.

Board Members

 

Darrell BlackDARRELL BLACK (’75)
President, Alumni Governing Board

Volunteer position: Chair, Athletics Committee

Years of service as a Shorter University volunteer: Came to Shorter from 1971-1975, played on baseball teams which in four years (including fall games) had a combined record of 150-35 (as best I can count) and we were District champs three times. I was the catcher for five Shorter Hawk Hall of Fame pitchers (Robbins, Wright, Long, Summers, Holland) and our staff led the nation in ERA my last two years. Our 39-6 record my senior year was the best mark in school history.

Also while at Shorter, I teamed with Hall of Fame inductee Rick Smith to start the Fellowship of Christian Athletes (there were only a handful of members, so Rick and I took turns with devotional, program, etc. We didn’t have officers. Along with coach Latanzzi and Attaway, we got the Hall of Fame off the ground and I was on the committee that formed the rules and voted in the first class of those elected.

In 2000, I chaired the effort to build the existing baseball field (which came in ahead of time and paid for with money left over). I have served on the Governing Board more than anyone in the history of the board. I’m fairly sure 2014 is my 25th year, with 20 years as chair of the athletic committee. I helped to form the scholarships which we now give and chaired the auctions that funded most of them.

What are your hobbies and interests?

After Shorter, I worked for the Rome News-Tribune for a few years as Assistant Sports editor, then coached for three years at Model, on state championship staff in ’79 (football), won state baseball title (summer all-stars), and coached three wrestling state champions.

I started my own flooring business in Milledgeville in 1984 where I am still going strong with a dozen employees. We joined a franchise group in 2000. I was elected Captain for the state of Georgia for the 22 stores that are in the National Flooring America franchise.

I am a member of Pine Grove Baptist Church and have taught Sunday School for about a dozen years. For fun I enjoy performing with the Georgia College theater group in their community plays.

What is your fondest memory from your Shorter experience?

My favorite Shorter memories are the baseball team’s wins over teams like Georgia Tech, Kentucky, Birmingham-Southern, and others.

 

Brian AbnerBRIAN ABNER (’01)

Volunteer position: Professional Programs Committee

Family members: Martha (wife), Christina (daughter), Nicholas (son)

Years of service as a Shorter University volunteer: First Year

What are your hobbies and interests?

I enjoy writing, keeping up with world events, traveling, music, volunteering for causes of interest, grilling, sports enthusiast (watching football, basketball, and baseball), being outdoors, meeting new people, being an active member of SRBC, and always spending time with family and friends.

What is your fondest memory from your Shorter experience?

I must say my fondest memory at Shorter was being part of a study group throughout my tenor in pursuit of my degree.  This study group atmosphere led to good friendships and provided the encouragement we each needed from time to time to keep going! Indeed, this form of learning, teaching, and support for fellow students kept us focused on our studies. These were exceptional experiences that I will never forget and think of frequently.

Please share why you give your time, talent and treasure to Shorter University.

There were several people who helped me along my path in earning my degree. Dr. Robert Nash was instrumental in encouraging me to consider Shorter as a place to enhance my education in a nurturing atmosphere for learning. Dr. Barbara Bailey was an influential professor during my time at Shorter. She was a wonderful facilitator and teacher in my efforts to complete course work towards pursuing my degree. These types of educators, I believe, exemplify why Shorter University is a great place to seek higher learning in pursuit of dreams and opportunities in life. I am deeply grateful and thankful for the guidance provided by educators such as these. Therefore I feel it is important to support this caliber of experiential education opportunities for those generations to come!

 

Sherrie Blocker (’97)
Volunteer position: Member of the Alumni Governing Board

Family members:
Son – Gavin Blocker

Years of service as a Shorter University volunteer:  This is my first year of volunteer service at Shorter University.

What are your hobbies and interests?
What is your fondest memory from your Shorter experience?  I feel that the education I received at Shorter University allowed me to have a successful career in the healthcare field for the last 25 years.  I could not have accomplished what I have without my Bachelor of Science in Business from Shorter University.

Please share why you give your time, talent and treasure to Shorter University.
I feel it is important to share what you have.  In my case, without my degree from Shorter University I would not be where I am today.  My success was gained from first receiving my degree from Shorter University.  I want to share that message with others to inspire them.

 

Vickie HenryVICKIE BOWEN HENRY (’71)
Past President of the Alumni Governing Board/Association
Member of the AGB since 2001
SUAA Distinguished Service Award 2007 & 2013

Family members:
Rev. Reginald C. Henry (spouse), Ashley and Philadelphia Henry (son and daughter-in-law), and Ada Callie Victoria (granddaughter)

Years of service as a Shorter University volunteer: 
45 years as a volunteer, 25 years Class Agent for the Class of ’71 and 3 years Alumni Association President.

What are your hobbies and interests? 

Ham radio operator, holds an FCC Element 3 Amateur Radio License General class, KK4VUG, Charter member, Theta Epsilon Chapter, Alpha Delta Pi Sorority

What is your fondest memory from your Shorter experience?
Epsilon Sigma Sorority

Why do you give your time, talent and treasure to Shorter University?
I could sum it up in several words:  Love, Loyalty, Labor and Link. Because of my years on the Hill, I have a special love for the people that became my family during those years. According to a tradition, there should be an unbreakable loyalty to family members which explains why I have continued to labor to keep my class close and connected to each other, not only to other classmates but also to the school.  I am a link… linking people to people and the school.

 

Branny HolderBRANAMAN (BRANNY) HOLDER (’01) 
Alumni Governing Board Member

Family members: 
Polly (spouse), Meredith (daughter)

Years of service as a Shorter University volunteer:  
2013

What are your hobbies and interests?
Following Shorter and Georgia Tech football and basketball, officiating junior high school and high school football (Member of Georgia Football Officials Association) and golf

What is your fondest memory from your Shorter experience?
The association I had with my professors that were totally focused on my success.

Why do you give your time, talent and treasure to Shorter University?
Shorter was there when I chose to complete my degree. I am proud of the administration at Shorter and what they represent. It is an honor to be a graduate of Shorter University.

 

Jonathan Howard

Jonathan Howard (’07)
Alumni Governing Board Member

Volunteer position: Chair, Young Alumni Committee

Years of service as a Shorter University volunteer: I have been involved with Shorter’s Alumni Governing Board since 2013. During my time as a student at Shorter, I had the opportunity to serve as an SGA senator (04/05), Vice-President (05/06), and President (06/07).

What are your hobbies and interests?

I am an avid baseball and Atlanta Braves fan. I have had season tickets in Atlanta since 2012. I also enjoy playing guitar and singing, meals out with friends, and a good book and cup of coffee.

What is your fondest memory from your Shorter experience?

Aside from the general relationships and time together with those friends, I would say my fondest memory is the spoon game or “Spoon Assassins.” At a set time, anyone who signed up received a polaroid of someone else and a plastic spoon in his or her mailbox. That person in the polaroid was your target and you had to tag them with your spoon. The game would go on for weeks and the only safe zones were classes and your dorm room. Paranoia was rampant for those days and weeks.

I also would be remiss if I didn’t give an honorable mention to coffee nights in Martha’s Cellar (“The Mug”). Between karaoke nights or outside bands or performers coming in, we had a lot of fun on those Thursday evenings.

 

 

Rick Hunt / Alumni Governing Board member

RICK HUNT (’80)
Alumni Governing Board (Scholarship Committee;  Distinguished Alumni Committee, Chair)

Family members:  Debra (spouse), Christi Hurley, Desiree Moody, Jaclyn Morang (2005)

Years of service as a Shorter University volunteer:  1 year

What are your hobbies and interests?

Landscape photography, general photography.  Interests include fishing, reading mysteries, volunteering in my church.

What is your fondest memory from your Shorter experience?

As a commuter student with a growing family and full time job, I had little time to get involved with campus life.  I did enjoy downtime in the Library and sitting in the rocking chairs on the balcony outside the dining hall talking with classmates between classes.  I also spent time walking the circle around the campus for exercise.  

Please share why you give your time, talent and treasure to Shorter University.

I was fortunate to have the opportunity to attend Shorter after graduating with my Associates in Business Administration from Floyd Junior College (now Georgia Highlands College). Being able to graduate from a college within my commuting range (Summerville) that had a great reputation as a quality Christian school was important to me. Now that my career as a minister and businessman is nearing its end, I wanted to work with the University in my retirement to do what I can to promote it to others and help current students. Now that I have moved to Rome, I want to enjoy the campus activities as an Alum and take pride in the continuing heritage the University offers to students from all around our country. While Shorter University is a household name around Floyd County, I know it is well known throughout the country as a quality, lower-than-average-cost provider of educational opportunity in an ever widening market for degree programs on campus and online.

I take pride in my Shorter College Diploma as it hangs on the wall in my office.  I want others to have the opportunity I had to get a good education.

 

KRISTI JONES (’90)
Alumni Governing Board Member

Family members: Todd Jones (husband), Tyler Jones (son) and Kelsi Jones (daughter)

Years of service as a Shorter University volunteer:
1 yr.

What are your hobbies and interests?

Sports, spending time with family, the lake, and the beach

What is your fondest memory from your Shorter experience?

Meeting and dating my husband, Todd, playing basketball, Ep Sig Sorority, Little Sister for Fraternity.

Please share why you give your time, talent and treasure to Shorter University.

Shorter is, and will always be, a very special place for me. I enjoy giving back to the place that gave me so much. I also have a daughter who attends Shorter and I want her to have the same great experience as I had while in college.

 

Lisa NelsonLISA HOWELL NELSON (’90)
Alumni Governing Board Member, Secretary

Family members:

I am married to Jason Nelson and am the proud mother of Baleigh (age 12) and Carter (age 9)

Years of service as a Shorter University volunteer:

I have volunteered in several capacities since graduating in 1990, but have served on the AGB since 2000 or 2001 and have served as the Secretary since 2006.

What are your hobbies and interests?
I am an avid reader, usually reading 6 or 7 novels per month. I also enjoy sports, more as a spectator than participant these days. I particularly enjoy basketball, whether it’s March Madness, the Model High Lady Blue Devils, or The Rec League’s Lady Dragons (Baleigh’s team). I am currently serving as a member of Pepperell Middle School’s Local School Governance Team, and have been a mentor in Floyd County Schools since 2005. I also operate Tailor Made Tutors, which is a private tutoring service designed to locate qualified tutors for students in a variety of academic areas.

What is your fondest memory from your Shorter experience? 
My best memories would have to be from Pledge week during my freshman year (1986). I had been largely a “hermit” beforehand, rarely venturing from my dorm, and had made very few friends. My inclusion in Epsilon Sigma, however, connected me firmly to Shorter, and also introduced me to some fabulous women, many of whom I still count as my closest friends.

Why do you give your time, talent and treasure to Shorter University?
I gained SO much more than a college degree from Shorter. I have gained friendships and relationships that have continued to bless me. Not only am I connected with faculty, staff, and classmates from my time at Shorter, I have whole new “branch” of Shorter family in the AGB. God has blessed me so much more than I ever imagined or deserve, and I can never repay Him for that, so I feel that what I CAN do is to “pay it forward” by serving in whatever way I can that will bring Him glory. My blessings have come largely in the form of relationships rather than money, so while I am unable to give Shorter as much “treasure” as I would like, I am blessed to have the flexibility in my daily life to give of my time and talents.

 

Deric ShawDERIC SHAW (’04)
Alumni Governing Board Member

Family members: 

Amanda Shaw, wife

Years of service as a Shorter University volunteer: 
First year

What are your hobbies and interests? 
I enjoy being active, seeing new places and exploring, working out, reading about history and theology, and, during the fall, I love college football.

What is your fondest memory from your Shorter experience? 
One of the first things I noticed about Shorter was the open door policy of the instructors. You were always welcome in their offices to discuss anything you wanted. Many would also put their personal phones numbers on class syllabi. Shorter was a very family oriented place, and students and professors had a bond that you will not find at most other places.

Why do you give your time, talent and treasure to Shorter University?
To me, Shorter is a unique and very special place. I believe in the mission of the university and the values and rewards a Shorter education gives to students. I think Shorter sets itself apart from state run, secular universities and many other private universities in the fact that holds to evangelical Christian doctrine, and that its faculty and staff are to be witnesses to students. I really enjoyed my time at Shorter and the education I received and the relationships I made. I want to do what I can to give back to the university.

 

Mary Shotwell-SmithMARY SHOTWELL SMITH (MA ’10)
Alumni Governing Board Member

Family members: 
Husband, Ernie (Class of ‘69), daughter, Ruth Anne, twin sons, Andrew (Class of ‘10) and Patrick. Three grandsons – Keipris and twins, Caleb and Elijah.

Years of service as a Shorter University volunteer: 
Employed as Director of Student Health Services since August 1996.

What are your hobbies and interests? 
Knitting, crocheting, painting, baking, singing and playing the piano.

What is your fondest memory from your Shorter experience?  
My fondest Shorter memory was the moment I walked across the stage to receive my Masters degree. The students, faculty and staff came together in one loud, thunderous roar and I couldn’t believe they were doing that for me. Over all the noise, my son Andrew, yelled “I love you, Mom.”  It was one of the happiest moments of my life.

Why do you give your time, talent and treasure to Shorter University?
Shorter University has invested in my life through a great education and longtime employment, and I feel a deep sense of loyalty to her. When you love something deeply, you want to share it with others. You want to protect and nurture it and watch it grow. I want those seeking a challenging education in a wholesome environment to learn about the incredibly unique experience that is found on our campus.

 

 

Delores Thomas

DELORES S. THOMAS (’13)
Alumni Governing Board Member

Years of service as a Shorter University volunteer:
First year

What are your hobbies and interests?
Reading, shopping, spending time with family, gardening

What is your fondest memory from your Shorter experience?
Study groups; assisting where help was needed, Class Representative, Inductee of the Sigma Beta Delta Honors Society, and meeting my fiancé Arden C. Key that was a former student.

Why do you give your time, talent and treasure to Shorter University?
I give my time, talent, and treasure to Shorter University because when I completed my degree, Shorter University was there every step of the way. Failure was not an option for me. Shorter helped me to develop and grow as a person as well as to gain a new perspective on life. I believe I must lead by example. I know and have faith that God has special plans for me. My giving back empowers me to believe in a better future.

 

 

 

Lashell WilliamsLACHOSHA (LASHELL) WILLIAMS (’00)
Alumni Governing Board Member

Volunteer position:  Shorter Alumni Professional Committee, Rockdale County Library Trustee, Georgia Adolescent Power & Potential (GCAPP), American Business Women Association (ABWA), National MBA Association and service to various Ministries & Charities

Years of service as a Shorter University volunteer: 2013

What are your hobbies and interests?
Interior Design, Scrapbooking, Golf, Horseback Riding, Live Jazz, Art, Yoga, Traveling, Poetry, and Writing (published two motivational books with more on the way)

What is your fondest memory from your Shorter experience?
Study groups
Real world experiences shared by Professors

Why do you give your time, talent and treasure to Shorter University?
My degree from Shorter was pivotal on my journey for success personally, academically and professionally. My classes were challenging and very enriching throughout my business program. Before I graduated, I always wondered if my BSBA degree would empower me to reach my career aspirations and it did. Quite naturally, I’m sure that current and future students have concerns about their ROI here and I want to confirm that Shorter is a valuable choice. After I accomplished my goals, it was my responsibility to share the good news about where and what the Shorter University road can lead to with determination, perseverance and faith.

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