MC alumni awards recognize community leaders

Libby Welsh

Libby Welsh

Yvette Franklin

Yvette Franklin

Alvin Nance

Alvin Nance

Maryville College honored three alumni during the National Alumni Association’s annual meeting and reception held Oct. 17 in the Alumni Gymnasium on campus.

The College’s Alumni Citation was presented to Elizabeth “Libby” Sloan Welsh, who served 47 years in numerous capacities for the advancement and development divisions of Maryville College and Alvin Nance, president and chief executive officer of Knoxville’s Community Development Corporation (KCDC).

Since 1961, the College’s Alumni Citations have recognized graduates who have rendered such service in professional, business, civil, social, or religious endeavor as to benefit humanity and bring honor to the College, or who have rendered unusual service in any capacity on behalf of the College.

Yvette Prinsloo Franklin, who is currently working toward a doctorate in cultural studies in education, was named the recipient of the Kin Takahashi Award for Young Alumni during the reception.

The Kin Takahashi award, instituted in 1999, honors alumni who have, within 15 years of graduation, lived lives characteristic of College legend Kin Takahashi, who, in his 36 years of living, worked tirelessly for the betterment of his alma mater, his church and his society.

Welsh, a Louisville, Kentucky, native, majored in English, was a member of the Writer’s Workshop, Women’s Choir and Chi Beta and worked in various offices at the College as a student worker.

Upon graduation in 1959, she began work in the College’s alumni office. For 47 years, Welsh served in numerous capacities for the advancement and development divisions of the College, holding many different titles, including assistant to the director of development, acting alumni director, director of campus events and administrative assistant to the vice president for development. In 1995, she was named director of donor records and research, which is the title she held until her retirement in June of 2006 when MC President Gerald Gibson presented her with a framed key to the college. A student award was also established in her name.

Chattanooga, native Nance transferred to Maryville College from Knoxville College in 1976. An outstanding football player, he also excelled in the classroom, majoring in business administration and minoring in art.

Graduating in 1979, he soon landed a job as manager of Valley Fidelity Bank & Trust Company’s University Branch in Knoxville. Nance also worked at SunTrust Bank as branch manager and vice president of the Regency Square Branch, as well as the bank’s Community Reinvestment Act officer. In 2000, he became the president and chief executive officer of KCDC, the public housing and redevelopment agency for the city.

Active in related professional organizations and other community causes, Nance serves as the vice-chair of the Tennessee Housing Development Agency, member of the Knox County Industrial Development Board and advisory board member for the Federal Home Loan Bank of Cincinnati and Fannie Mae. He is a current member of Maryville College’s Board of Directors and is active with the Boy Scouts of America, Project GRAD, the Metropolitan YMCA and the Dogwood Arts Festival. Nance and wife Jacquelyn have one daughter and one son. The family resides in Knoxville.

Franklin, a native of Cape Town, South Africa, majored in child development and learning for teacher licensure at Maryville College. She was a member of the Fellowship of Christian Athletes and a student worker in the office of admissions.

Graduating cum laude in 1998, Franklin was hired by the Knox County (Tenn.) School System. The following year, she was named associate director for YOKE Youth Ministries and returned to the MC campus to recruit volunteers for the organization. After marrying classmate David Franklin ‘98 in 2000, she taught in Ohio schools and later, Maryland schools and churches.

Franklin enrolled in graduate school at the University of Tennessee. Last year - and with a perfect 4.0 GPA - she completed a master’s degree with a concentration in cultural studies of educational foundations and a specialization in philosophy of education.

Now pursuing a Ph.D. in cultural studies of educational foundations with an Africana Studies cognate, Franklin twice has been asked to present her research to members of the Educational Research Association. She hopes to someday teach education at a liberal arts college and help future teachers bring together the philosophy, sociology and history of education to analyze “big picture” issues in education that drive policies and practices worldwide. Franklin, her husband and three children reside in Greenback. To nominate an alumnus/alumna for an award, visit the College’s web site for details.

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