alumni events

Alumni awards honor excellence

Oxford College honors our alumni and other members of our community for their outstanding leadership, dedication, loyalty, and service.

2017 Alumni Awards Recipients

Outstanding Young Alumnus/Alumna Award

safiya jetha

2017 Outstanding Young Alumna Award

The Oxford College Alumni Association gives this award to an Oxford alumnus/alumna who shows exceptional dedication, loyalty, and innovation in his or her service to Oxford. They are no more than twelve years out from their Oxford degree.

Safiya Jetha 07Ox 09C

Safiya Jetha completed her Masters in Teaching degree at the University of Washington in 2016 with a specialization in biology. She currently teaches middle school science at Licton Springs K-8, a Title I school in North Seattle. Jetha also taught at an international school in Mombasa, Kenya, and is a member of the Class of 2014 graduate program in Education for Environment and Community at Islandwood in Bainbridge Island, Wash. Prior to that, she worked in Oxford’s Enrollment Services.

While a student at Oxford College, she served on the Freshman Council and was involved in environmental conservation and sustainability efforts, traveling with Oxford service groups to New Orleans to assist in hurricane relief efforts. She received the prestigious Virgil Y.C. Eady Sophomore Service Award in 2007. At the presentation of the award, Dean of Campus Life Joseph Moon stated that Jetha repeatedly demonstrated that when something worthwhile needed to be done, she suddenly appeared, with a spirit of generosity and the ability to diffuse tension and conflict.

Past Recipient

2016Will Canon 11Ox 13C

Outstanding Alumnus/Alumna Award

barbara carter

2017 William Norton Outstanding Alumna Award

The Oxford College Alumni Association gives this award to an Oxford alumnus/alumna who has shown exceptional dedication, loyalty, and innovation in his or her service to Oxford.

Barbara J. Carter Rivers 65Ox

Barbara Rivers served as the first female president of the Oxford College Alumni Board, beginning her term in 2011. Previously, she had served as treasurer from 2008-09. Rivers retired in 2005 as nurse administrator with the Newton County Health Center. She's married to an Oxford alumnus, Al Rivers 64Ox. Together they have two children, one of whom, Maggie Rivers Cato 90Ox, also attended Oxford.

Rivers volunteered as the Oxford Class of 1965 Reunion Committee Chair in 2010. She was co-chair, along with Jane Atkinson, of the 50th class reunion, where she helped raise $25,000. She has devoted countless hours of service on her local mental health board, the Covington YMCA board, as well as her church medical clinic. She currently serves on the Emory Alumni Board President’s Club and the Oxford Board of Counselors.

Past Recipients

2016Chi Chi Okezie 98Ox 00C
2015Julie Nelson 95Ox 96C
2014Susan Gregory 77Ox 79C
2013Kip Hart 94Ox 96C
2012Tom Brodnax 65Ox 68C
2011Warren Brook 70Ox 72B
2010Joe Bartenfeld 64Ox 66C
2009Teresa Rivero 85Ox 87B 93PH
2008Paul Jackson 82Ox 84B
2007Marvin Hardy 61Ox 63C 65L
2006Joe Edwards 54Ox 56B 58B
2005Dan Ragsdale 59Ox
2004Mellie Davis 59Ox
2003William (Bill) Norton 42Ox 44C 50L
2002Art Vinson 66Ox 68C
2001Hugh Tarbutton 52Ox 55C
2000Dean Minor 38Ox 40C
1999Jim Bailey 67Ox 69C

Outstanding Teaching Award

ken carter

2017 Outstanding Teaching Award

The Oxford College Alumni Association gives this award to an Oxford faculty member, past or present, who has imbued a love of learning, a mastery of the work, and a sense of community in the course of teaching at Oxford. 

Ken Carter 87Ox 89C

Ken Carter is Charles Howard Candler Professor of Psychology at Oxford College, where he teaches introductory courses in psychology as well as advanced courses in clinical psychopharmacology, research methods, and personality. A graduate of Oxford College and Emory University, Carter received an MA and PhD in psychology from the University of Michigan. After completion of his doctoral work, he also earned an MS in psychopharmacology from Fairleigh Dickinson University and gained board certification as a clinical psychologist. Before joining the Oxford College faculty in 1999, Carter served as a senior assistant research scientist in the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s prestigious Epidemic Intelligence Service, with a research focus on smoking as a risk marker for suicidal behaviors in adolescents.

Carter has published extensively in both academic and lay publications, actively engaging in the translation of research in psychology into everyday language. His articles have been published in magazines such as Mental Floss and Reader's Digest, and he has appeared on news programs such as Connect with Kids and NBC’s Today show. The psychology of thrill-seeking is the current focus of Carter’s research. He's the designer and instructor of a Coursera course, and under contract for a book on the subject from Cambridge University Press. Canadian museum, Science North, will open an exhibit on sensation-seeking in spring 2018 that was informed by Carter’s work.

Past Recipients

2016Clark Lemons 74G 78PhD
2015Steve Henderson
2014Hoyt Oliver 54Ox 56C
2013Eloise Carter 78G 83PhD
2012Bill Cody
2011Andy Autry
2010Kent Linville
2009Dan Moore 35Ox 37C 40G
2008Bill McKibben
2007Judy Greer
2006Mike McQuaide
2005Homer Sharp 56Ox 59C
2004John Gregory
2003Neil Penn
2002Dick Shappell
2001Joe Guillebeau
2000Marshall Elizer
1999Curry Haynes

Outstanding Staff Award

debbie mote

2017 Outstanding Staff Award

The Oxford College Alumni Association gives its Outstanding Staff Award to an Oxford College staff member, past or present, who has shown exceptional dedication and loyalty in his or her service to Oxford. They also appreciate the sense of community that Oxford offers.

Debbie Mote

Debbie Mote retired in March 2018 from her long-time role as receptionist for the Student Center at Oxford College. At one time, she was “house mother” at the Jolley Residential Complex, as she was the receptionist. Mote counseled, supported, and helped many students during those years. She's “Oxford Central” when it comes to knowing what's happening on campus. She's married to Lanier Mote and together they live in Covington and own Lanier Mote Builders, Inc., specializing in custom cabinetry, furniture, woodturning, and acoustic instrument repair.

Past Recipients

2016Lyn Pace 02T 17T
2015Todd Cain
2014Joy Budensiek
2013Rodger Brunson
2012Marvlyn Kirk
2011Jennie Taylor
2010Mary Barnes
2009Eugene Williams
2008Stephen Bowen

Honorary Alumnus/Alumna Award

doug shipman

2017 Honorary Alumnus

The Oxford College Alumni Association gives its Honorary Alumnus/Alumna Award to a person who did not graduate from Oxford College but who has shown exceptional dedication in his or her service to Oxford.

Doug Shipman 95C

Doug Shipman is president and CEO of the Woodruff Arts Center. Previously, he served as CEO and managing director of BrightHouse, a business unit of the Boston Consulting Group. He's widely known as the founding CEO of the National Center for Civil and Human Rights in Atlanta, having developed the Center’s business strategy, fundraising strategy, and public engagement plan that led the $100 million museum to become a reality. He was named one of the 100 Most Influential Atlantans by the Atlanta Business Chronicle from 2011-13.

Shipman graduated magna cum laude with BA degrees in economics and political science. He earned a Master of Theological Studies from Harvard Divinity School and a Master of Public Policy from the John F. Kennedy School of Government at Harvard. He's a member of the The Carter Center’s Board of Trustees and a member of the Board of Directors of the Metro Atlanta Chamber of Commerce, the Midtown Alliance, the Atlanta Convention and Visitors Bureau, and the National Center for Civil and Human Rights. He's active with the Harvard Alumni Association and the Emory Alumni Association. A member of the Emory Alumni Board since 2009, Shipman served as president from 2014-15 and now serves as an ex-officio member. He's a member of the EAA President’s Club and served for many years on the Center for Creativity & Arts (CCA) Advisory Board. His wife is also an Emory alumna, Bijal Bharat Shah 96B 06M; they have two daughters.

Past Recipients

2016Stephen Bowen
2015Sheilah Connor
2014Nancy Murdy
2013Kitty McNeill
2012Kathy Brook
2011Penny England
2010James Wagner
2009Mary Louise Flemming 70G
2008Mike McQuaide
2007Sammy Clark
2006Lil Long
2005Paul Anderson 38C 40L
2004Dean Dana Greene, Joe Moon, and Jennie Taylor
2003John Temple
2002Jake Ward 33C 36G
2001Judy Greer
2000Bond Fleming 33C 36T
1999William H. Murdy


R. Carl Chandler Award

homer sharp

2017 R. Carl Chandler Award

The R. Carl Chandler Award for a Lifetime of Leadership through Service to Oxford College is given each year to a person that exemplifies leadership, service, and dedication to Oxford College.

Homer Sharp 59C

A Newton County native, Sharp graduated from Emory College in 1959 with a bachelor’s degree in biology and went on to the University of Georgia to obtain a PhD in zoology and ecology in 1970. Sharp began his career at LaGrange College and the University of Georgia in the early 1960s, and subsequently joined the faculty at Oxford College.

Sharp retired as professor of biology in 1998 after 35 years at Oxford College. He's a past recipient of the Fleming Award for excellence in teaching and service and the Outstanding Teaching Award in 2005 by the Oxford College Alumni Board. While maintaining his teaching career, he simultaneously offered environmental consulting. He was a beloved professor to many and is recognized for providing outstanding leadership through a lifetime of service to Oxford College.

Past Recipients

2016Fred L. Palmer 52Ox 57M 58MR 60MR
2015Trulock Dickson 72Ox 74C
2014Eugene Rackley 55Ox 58B
2013Mike McQuaide
2012*Pierce Cline 47Ox
2011Milt Gillespie 59Ox     
2010Hugh Tarbutton, Sr. 52Ox 55B
2009*Bill Murdy, Dean Emeritus     
2008Max Austin 61Ox 63C 69MR
2007Bill Norton 42Ox 48C 50L 
2006Bob Chappell 56Ox 58B 68B
2005Marvin Hardy, III 61Ox 63C 65L
2004Judy Greer, Professor Emerita 
2003Tommy Owens 59Ox 61C 65D 
2002Joe Edwards 54Ox 56B 58B 
2001John and *Sara Gregory   
2000*Marshall and *Fran Elizer   
1999*Bond Fleming 33C 36T, Dean Emeritus
1998*Dean Minor 38Ox 40C   
1997Clifford Bell 46Ox 50C  

*Deceased