November 8, 2011
College of Arts & Sciences Honors Outstanding Alumni
VALDOSTA -- The Valdosta State University College of Arts and
Sciences honored 11 alumni during its inaugural Outstanding Alumni
Dinner, held Oct. 13. Honorees ranged from the class of 1961 to the
class of 2002, each chosen from the respective program from which
they graduated. Those honored were:
African American Studies: Charleston Carter
Graduating from VSU with a Bachelor of Science Criminal Justice and a minor in African-American Studies, and then a Master of Arts in Criminal Justice, Carter later graduated from Michigan State University’s Judicial Administration program. Carter now works as the court administrator for the Superior Court of Georgia, Fulton County, where he administers court for 37 judges and lawyers, including 21 superior court judges.
Biology: Megan Gorman
Upon earning her Bachelor of Science in Biology in 1994, Groman worked as a Peace Corps volunteer in El Salvador, and eventually earned a Masters of Arts in International Relations from Syracuse University. She is currently an associate director at the Stanford University Center for Latin American Studies and serves on the executive committee of the Consortium of Latin American Studies Programs.
Chemistry: Kathy Carvalho-Knighton, Ph.D.
A 1996 graduate of VSU with a Bachelor of Science in Chemistry, Carvalho-Knighton went on to get her Ph.D. in Analytical Chemistry from the University of South Florida in 2000. She is currently an associate professor of chemistry at the University of South Florida and the director of STREAMS, a National Science Foundation funded program designed to increase the number of bright, low-income underrepresented groups in the geosciences, environmental and marine science disciplines.
English: Lisa Love
Love is a 1994 graduate from VSU, with a Bachelor of Arts in English. Since graduation, she has worked heavily in Georgia’s arts community, becoming the executive director of the Georgia Music Hall of Fame in 2006. She currently works for Georgia’s Film, Music and Digital Entertainment Office, where she leads efforts to retain, expand and develop the state music industry. She has also founded and published several magazines over the years, including Down South Submarine, an entertainment guide to South Georgia, and Georgia Music Magazine, a quarterly magazine celebrating the state’s legends, landmarks and unsung heroes.
History: F. Lamar Pearson, Ph.D.
After graduating in 1961 with a bachelor’s degree in history, Pearson later earned his Ph.D in history from University of Alabama. In the 38 years that Dr. Pearson spent teaching history at VSU, he specialized in researching the Spanish period of the American Southeast and 15 to 16th century archival Spanish language sources and served as dean of the Graduate School. He retired in 2003.
Math & Computer Science: Jessica Fuller
Graduating from Duke University in 2007 with a master’s degree in medical physics after earning two bachelor degrees from VSU (a Bachelor of Arts in Mathematics and a Bachelor of Science in Applied Mathematics), Fuller now works as a medical physicist at Southeast Georgia Health System. Fuller also finds time to participate in community service and returned to VSU in 2005 as a guest speaker at Sonia Kovalevsky Day, an event designed to encourage high school girls to pursue education in mathematics.
Modern & Classical Languages: Dean Allbritton, Ph.D
Allbritton currently serves as an assistant professor of Spanish at Colby College. He holds a bachelor’s degree from VSU, a master’s degree from Syracuse University and Ph.D. in Spanish Film Studies from Stony Brook University. His work focuses on metaphors of illness and masculinity in contemporary Spanish film. He has been published in Studies in Hispanic Cinemas, Post Script, and has written a chapter in a forthcoming Blackwell anthology on Almodovar.
Philosophy: Niles Reddick, Ph.D
Reddick is the vice president for academic affairs at Abraham Baldwin Agricultural College in Tifton. After earning a Bachelor of Arts in Philosophy from VSU, Reddick went on to earn a Ph.D. in Humanities with an emphasis in literature and psychology. He has written and published a collection of short stories, Road Kill Art and Other Oddities, as well as a novel, Lead Me Home.
Physics, Astronomy and Geosciences: Emily Davenport
After earning a Bachelor of Science in Environmental Studies in 2002 and a Master of Public Administration in 2004, both from VSU, Davenport worked as the environmental planner for the Southern Georgia Regional Commission. She served as environmental planner for five years and then joined the City of Valdosta’s utilities department. This year she become the city’s stormwater manager in the engineering department, and works to streamline the city’s entire stormwater program.
Sociology, Anthropology and Criminal Justice: Zola Myers
Gaining her undergraduate degree in 1996 and her master’s degree in sociology in 2010 from VSU, Myers has, for the past fourteen years, been working as Executive Director of the Cook County Family Connection. Under her direction, the Connection has experienced tremendous growth in its annual budget thanks to Myers grant writing abilities. She has also developed House of Grace, a residential community for men who were previously homeless. She is the author of Dancing with the Dragon: An Honest Look at Addiction.