BOONE, N.C.—Five Appalachian State University leaders received W.H. Plemmons Leadership Medallions during the “2017 Celebration of Leadership and Legacy,” a banquet held April 21 on campus.
The recipients, each recognized in a specific category, are: Martha Marking, faculty; Dr. Mike Mayfield, staff; James J. “J.J.” Brown III, student development; John Martin “Jamal” Peters, student leader; and Jonathan Mauldin, W.H. Plemmons Fellow.
The medallion is named for Dr. William H. Plemmons, who served as Appalachian’s second president from 1955 to 1969. The award recognizes the time, energy, skills and commitment of students, faculty, student development educators and staff who exceed their peers in providing leadership that enriches the quality of student life and advances the education of students.
Appalachian’s Board of Trustees established the medallion award in 1996. The trustees name the medallion winners each year after considering the recommendations of an award committee.
Leroy Wright, Appalachian’s associate vice chancellor for student development, chaired this year’s award committee. The Board of Trustees named the 2017 medallion winners on March 24.
Here is more information about the 2017 recipients of the W.H. Plemmons Leadership Medallions:
Marking, a professor of theatre arts-design, joined Appalachian in 1987. She serves as the faculty chair of the university’s Early Intervention Team (EIT) and has completed the 40-hour North Carolina Office of State Human Resources Employment Mediation Training. In addition to designing one show a semester at Appalachian and teaching a course on subjects such as costumes and makeup, she designed costumes at the Utah Shakespearean Festival and was a cutter/draper there. She has served on numerous Appalachian committees.
Marking has been “a valued contributor to the department, the university and her profession for nearly 30 years,” her nominator said. “She has demonstrated an ongoing commitment to the students at Appalachian through leadership in university governance and student support services, among other areas.
“She has established a reputation as a skilled, confidential and impartial resource for our students. Through her work with EIT, she is aware of the unique and evolving challenges of our students, many of whom are first generation college students, and she plays a critical role in providing support to all who are referred to her.”
Dr. Mike Mayfield
Since 2012, Mayfield has served as Appalachian’s vice provost for undergraduate education, a position he will relinquish in July 2017. During his tenure as vice provost, he has provided the vision and leadership that develops and implements undergraduate programming.
On Appalachian’s faculty since 1988, Mayfield is also a professor in the Department of Geography and Planning, which he chaired from 1998 to 2002. He taught part time during his provost tenure. He will continue teaching part time after he steps down as provost, in addition to serving as faculty director of Appalachian’s Wilson Scholars Program.
During his tenure as provost, Mayfield “has provided a steady and consistent voice for students during a time of transition,” his nominator said. “As he leaves this position at the end of the academic year, his legacy extends beyond the students whose lives he has enriched. It extends to his colleagues who have been influenced by his values; policies that are student-centric; and established partnerships that extend student learning far beyond the traditional classroom.”
James J. “J.J.” Brown III
Brown has been vice chancellor for student development at Appalachian since May 1. Prior to that, he served as Appalachian’s associate vice chancellor for student development and dean of students since June 2010.
The vice chancellor for student development is the chief student affairs officer of the university and reports to the chancellor. The position assists the chancellor in meeting the university’s mission and strategic objectives, and provides strategic advice to the chancellor related to student development and success.
“Going above and beyond is what J.J. does and does well,” his nominator said. “He is a mentor to so many students, faculty and staff. No matter who you are on campus, if there is a need, J.J. is willing to help you. He spends countless hours on e-mail, answering phone calls, visiting with students and at events interacting with the campus community. Students trust him and look to him for guidance and leadership.”
John Martin “Jamal” Peters
Peters, a senior from Durham who is majoring in health promotion, interned in 2017 for Appalachian’s Department of Wellness and Prevention Services. In that capacity, he assisted with focus groups and developed a health promotion research project. He has also worked in Appalachian’s Office of the Dean of Students.
Peters’ nominator called him “the type of student that every Mountaineer wants to meet on their first day… This is due to the intentional, genuine and upbeat efforts of this remarkable individual, and his ability to connect with the heart and soul of this campus,” the nominator said. “In the way that he approaches leadership roles, internships and other involvements, one can see that Jamal truly lives by the university’s motto, ‘Esse quam videri,’ which means ‘To be, rather than to seem.’”
Mauldin, a senior accounting major from Lumberton, is a Plemmons Leadership Fellow, enjoying benefits of a four-year scholarship worth $2,000 a year. He is a member of the Walker Fellows, a group that supports the mission of Appalachian’s Walker College of Business by providing outreach to and interaction with current students, future students and alumni. He led the Presidents’ Roundtable for the college during the 2016-17 academic year. He has also served as president of the Club Council, the university’s governing body for clubs and organizations. He is a past recipient of the President’s Volunteer Service Award.
Mauldin’s “legacy will be his care for other people,” his nominator said. “He is not the type of person that needs to be in the spotlight or craves attention. Rather, he puts others in the spotlight to honor and celebrate others’ accomplishments. …There are very few times when I interact with such a strong and inspirational student leader.”
About Appalachian State University
Appalachian State University, in North Carolina’s Blue Ridge Mountains, prepares students to lead purposeful lives as global citizens who understand and engage their responsibilities in creating a sustainable future for all. The transformational Appalachian experience promotes a spirit of inclusion that brings people together in inspiring ways to acquire and create knowledge, to grow holistically, to act with passion and determination, and embrace diversity and difference. As one of 17 campuses in the University of North Carolina System, Appalachian enrolls more than 19,000 students, has a low student-to-faculty ratio and offers more than 150 undergraduate and graduate majors.
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