As part of Homecoming 2013 for Fairmont State University, six exceptional alumni will be honored at the annual Alumni Awards Brunch at 10:30 a.m. Saturday, Oct. 12.
Sponsored by Thrasher Engineering, the event will be held in the Falcon Center third floor conference rooms. Tickets are $20 in advance or $25 at the door. Visit www.fairmontstate.edu/homecoming to view a complete list of events and additional information.
“Each year the Fairmont State Alumni Association receives countless nominations for their Homecoming awards. This year we are proud to present awards to six remarkable alumni,” said Emily Swain, Director of Alumni Relations.
Outstanding Young Alumna—Laura (Bennett) Meadows, Class of 2007
Laura (Bennett) Meadows graduated cum laude with a degree in marketing from Fairmont State in 2007. She was awarded and maintained the PROMISE Scholarship and made the President’s List and Dean’s list during her college career.
While taking a sales course at FSU, Meadows discovered her passion for the tourism industry in West Virginia. She started her career at Mountain CAP of WV, Inc., a Community Development Corporation in 2007 as a business loan/training coordinator. In that position she monitored program budgets, prepared housing counseling and entrepreneurial courses, as well as prepared grants and promoted Mountain CAP programs.
In 2011, Meadows was appointed as the Executive Director of the Upshur County Convention & Visitors Bureau. In her role, she is responsible for overall programming and development within the CVB. As director, she oversees multiple festivals including the Strawberry Festival, Mountain Quilt Quest, Festival Fridays, Upshur County Fair and many more. Meadows also works closely with West Virginia Wesleyan College to promote all Upshur County has to offer to its students.
Meadows is married to Johnny Meadows, Class of 2007, and resides in Buckhannon. She has a passion for West Virginia, loves camping and everything outdoors.
Outstanding Young Alumnus—Chris Weaver, Class of 1999
Chris Weaver graduated from Fairmont State in 1999 with a bachelor’s degree in business. He was very active on campus in Student Government and other political events. He attended West Virginia University and received a graduate degree in public administration and even made two runs for the West Virginia House of Delegates.
In 2003, Weaver moved to Nashville to pursue a lifelong dream of singer/songwriter and guitarist. His style and format is based more on traditional rock and roll with blues and soul mixed in as well as a modern country sound. While in Nashville, he earned coveted performance opportunities at The Stage on Broadway in Nashville and in Austin, Texas, as well as the “Tin Roof.” He is admired by many top name artists like Blake Shelton, Lee Brice and Dave Haywood, as well as others who have listened and in some cases performed with Weaver in some of the top venues in Nashville. He has co-written songs with some of Nashville’s leading writers like Harley Allen, a two-time songwriter of the year, and Stephanie Smith, also a number one writer. He is currently working with a top management agency, Jeff Catton, who has moved Weaver out of Nashville to other cities and venues across the country. He is a regular in one of Chicago’s top venues, “Joe’s Bar.”
Weaver scraped together his savings and recorded, mixed and mastered “Standing In Line” his debut CD, in four days. “Standing In Line” employs a classic American rock ’n’ roll feel with a splash of country. Many of the songs on this album have been played on radio stations throughout the country. In 2012 Weaver inked a licensing deal with the NFL for the 2012 year’s football season with a song “Want It” he co-wrote and later was recorded by American Idol winner, Jordan Sparks. He also has a song in the major motion picture “A Matter of Time.” Billboard magazine listed Weaver among the top 10 new artists to look for in 2013.
Weaver is currently working with former Jimmy Buffett and Glenn Frey guitarist and legendary producer, Josh Leo, on his next CD. The new album contains an even more powerful array of songs sure to capture the attention of the music industry in Nashville as well as music lovers across the country.
Outstanding Alumna—Tina (Alvaro) Shaw, Class of 1982
Tina Alvaro Shaw graduated from Fairmont State in 1982 with degrees in business administration and speech communications. While at Fairmont, Shaw was a member of the speech team, traveling throughout the state participating in speech and oral communication tournaments. She is a past winner of the M.M. Neely Persuasive Speaking Contest and participated in many university theatre productions during her college years.
Upon graduation, she began her career with Crown American Corporation, a shopping center developer, serving as Marketing Director, Regional Marketing Director and Corporate Marketing Director until 1998. During that time she was a member of the Marion County Chamber of Commerce Board of Directors, serving as Chairman in 1998.
In 1999, she began working for the Chamber serving as the events and sales coordinator, and in 2003 she became President of the Marion County Chamber of Commerce (MCCC) and serves in that position today. The MCCC is a county-wide non-profit organization with approximately 475 members. The mission of the MCCC is to help recreate an environment that fosters and economic development and enhances the quality of life for Marion County. Shaw is a member of the American Association for Chamber of Commerce Executives and the WV Association of Chamber of Commerce Executives for which she served as President in 2007 and 2008.
Shaw is involved in numerous organizations and currently serves as President of the Marion County Boys & Girls Club, “Acting” Chairman of Seven Stories Theatre Company and President of the Fairmont Senior High School Choral Boosters. She is a member of the United Way of Marion County Board of Directors and served as President in 2012. In addition, she is a member of the Fairmont Rotary, the WVHTC Foundation Affiliate Leadership Council, American Association of University Women, Leadership Marion Board of Directors, Associated Businesses of East Fairmont, Marion County Development Authority, MCCC Women’s Network, Women on Wellness Steering Committee and Greater Fairmont Woman’s Club.
Shaw is very proud to be working alongside federal, state and local elected officials and community leaders in shaping a better future for Marion County and recognizes the local business community for creating the environment for future growth. She credits her parents, Anthony D. and Rose Alvaro, for instilling in her the values of always putting family, faith and friends first and providing her with the opportunity to attend Fairmont State College.
She is married to Dave Shaw, a Marion County native, and together they have four sons. Gary is a graduate of WVU and George Washington University School of Law and currently works for the U.S. State Department in the Division of International War Crimes. Joseph attended Fairmont State University and resides in Washington, D.C., working as a manager of a restaurant. Andy is a senior at Fairmont Senior High School and currently serves as Student Body President. Michael is a junior at FSHS serving as the Junior Class Secretary. Shaw and her family are members of St. Anthony’s Catholic Church in Watson.
Outstanding Alumnus—Dr. G.H “Budd” Sapp, Class of 1980
Dr. G. H. “Budd” Sapp was born March 28, 1958, the son of Marian F. (Meale) Sapp and the late Gerald H. (Bud) Sapp, Sr. Budd attended Fairmont Catholic School and graduated from Fairmont Senior High School in 1976. He graduated from Fairmont State in 1980 with a bachelor’s degree in education. His teaching specializations were biological science and physical education. Sapp has a master’s degree in physical education and athletic training and a doctorate in curriculum and instruction from West Virginia University.
He taught at Fairmont Catholic from 1980-1981 and coached junior high basketball. He taught at North Marion High School in Marion County from 1981-1997. Sapp taught biology, anatomy and physiology and sports medicine and coached football, basketball and golf during his tenure at North Marion. In addition, he was athletic trainer, Student Council advisor, sponsor of the Academic List and president of Faculty Senate. Sapp was recognized as the 1995 RESA VII Exemplary Teacher of the Year and named Who’s Who Among America’s Teachers in 1996.
Sapp was hired as a Public School Teaching Fellow at Fairmont State in 1997 and was subsequently hired full-time as an Assistant Professor in 1998. He is currently a tenured Professor in Fairmont State’s School of Education, Health and Human Performance, where he teaches online professional education courses at the graduate level and is a liaison to several Marion County public schools in the Professional Development School Partnership.
Sapp has been fortunate to have his service to the FSU community recognized by receiving the Faculty Achievement Award, the William A. Boram Award for Teaching Excellence and the Academic Advising Award. Sapp received the College Educator of the Year Award presented by the American Legion Department of West Virginia. Sapp is the Director of Leadership Marion and in this role has the honor of serving as an ambassador for Fairmont State. He has had the privilege of representing the community as a member of the Marion County Board of Education. Sapp is a Board of Examiners member for the Council for the Accreditation of Educator Preparation and is a member and officer for various professional education organizations. He serves on various School of Education and University committees as well as the Fairmont State Alumni Association Board and the Fairmont State Athletic Association Board. Sapp is involved in the community and serves in a variety of roles which include being a member of the Fairmont Kiwanis and Knights of Columbus and serving as Chairperson of the Salvation Army Advisory Council.
Sapp is married to the former Robin L. Dalton and they have two daughters, Brigitte, who is a graduate of Fairmont State and employed as nurse at the WVU Mary Babb Randolph Cancer Center, and Brooklyn, who is soon to be a graduate of Fairmont State and is employed as a radiologic technologist at WVU Hospital. Sapp enjoys spending time with his immediate and extended family and friends and also enjoys his hobby of golfing. He is a member of the St. Anthony and Holy Spirit Catholic Church communities.
Alumna of Achievement—Lydia (Layman) McCue, Class of 1967
Born in Fairmont, Lydia McCue is the daughter of the late Howard and Harriette Layman and one of five children including James, Winifred, Dan and Walter. She grew up in Baxter, where her father worked as a coal miner and her mother an employee of the G.C. Murphy Co. She graduated from Rivesville High School in 1963 and Fairmont State College in 1967. In 1968 she married John D. McCue, Jr. of Parkersburg and has been married for 45 years. She received her master’s degree from Ohio State University and completed post-graduate work at Marshall University.
She began her career in education in Prince George’s County, Maryland, as a junior high school teacher, followed by teaching positions in West Virginia and Ohio. She entered education administration and leadership in 1976 with the West Virginia Department of Education as the state Social Studies Specialist. As her career advanced, she held positions as the West Virginia Coordinator for Middle Childhood Education; the Director of the West Virginia Principals’ Academy; Assistant Director of the National Center for Effective School in Okemos, Mich.; Director of Adolescent and Middle Childhood Education for Putnam County Schools; and most recently, Special Assistant to the West Virginia State Superintendent of Schools.
She has led a variety of state and national initiatives including work in effective schools research and implementation; leadership development for principals and superintendents; school reform related to 21st century learning skills; improvement of middle childhood education; and improvement of social studies education through development of such projects as the West Virginia State Social Studies Fair and the West Virginia Youth and Government Program.
During her career, McCue received both national and state awards, including a Fulbright Scholarship to the Peoples Republic of China; Cadre Member of the National Center for Effective Schools (one of 23 educators in the U.S. named as a leader in school reform); Marshall University Harless Hall of Fame Member for contributions to enhancing rural education in West Virginia; Recognition for Meritorious Service presented by the West Virginia State Bar for outstanding work in law education; Outstanding Social Studies Educator Award presented by the West Virginia Council for Social Studies; Outstanding Service Award in Middle Level Education presented by the West Virginia Association of Middle Level Educators; and Outstanding Service to Counseling Award presented by the West Virginia Counseling Association.
Though retired, McCue continues to be committed to the improvement of public education and works as a consultant and volunteer. During free time, she loves travelling with her husband, a car enthusiast, restorer and vintage sports car racer. She is a proud West Virginian and holds deep gratitude to those at Fairmont State who shaped her beliefs and values about educating children and her husband, family, friends and colleagues who supported and guided her along the way.
Alumnus of Achievement—Curtis Fleming, Class of 1990
Curtis Fleming graduated from Fairmont State in 1990 with a degree in industrial psychology and a minor in marketing. Fleming met his wife, Shelly Bibey while at Fairmont State and the two were married in 1991. He went on to study at University of Virginia and Old Dominion University, working toward a master’s degree in special education. Throughout his education, Fleming maintained his passion for the outdoors and spent all his free time connecting with nature.
From 1991 to 2003, Fleming worked in the education sector at Timber Ridge School, a residential treatment unit. He began as a student-life/case manager and was promoted to education instructor where he was responsible for crisis management, curriculum, and acted as a behavior modification specialist. In was in that position that Fleming earned the Teacher of Year in 2002.
In 2003, Fleming went to work at the CFW Regional Adult Detention Center in Winchester, Va., as a program coordinator. He was responsible for screening, testing and identifying inmates who might need special education services and providing education opportunities that enable inmates to successful transition from incarceration to civil residence. From there, Fleming worked as a Qualified Mental Health Professional Virginia Certified Counselor and addressed the behavioral needs of youth in crisis. Additionally, Fleming has served as a business management consultant for Evans Home Orphanage since 1998. In that role, he assists with fundraising projects such as a bike rally and mile run.
Fleming also has experience in the oil and gas field, as he was the President/CEO of Indigo-Energy, an oil and gas company trading in the NASDAQ Exchange.
Through all the years, Fleming managed to follow his passion for fly fishing. In 2002, he became owner/CEO of Lost River Scents, Inc. and Fly Fish Explorations, Inc. His responsibilities include marketing, sales, distribution, production and product research for fly fishing and fishing in general in the Appalachian Mountain water cold streams.
In 2006, Fleming became the executive producer and host of “Fly Rods with Curtis Fleming,” a national award-winning show that airs on the Outdoor Channel in over 36 million homes. The show chronicles his travel all over the world with friends, special guests, kids, wounded warriors, cancer survivors and folks of all walks of life. Fleming was named “Host of the Year” in 2010 by fellow producers and fans and also named “WV Angler of the Year.” He has been included in the “55 Best Things to Happen to WV” and consistently received Best Broadcast Awards from West Virginia Tourism. Fleming’s show is sponsored by Wild, Wonderful West Virginia.
Fleming lives in Virginia with his wife, Shelly, and daughters, Laken and Autumn.