Six Alumni to Be Honored at Homecoming Awards Lunch

Saturday, October 16, 2010

As part of Homecoming 2010 "Metropolitan Mania" for Fairmont State University and Pierpont Community & Technical College, six exceptional alumni will be honored at the annual Alumni Awards Lunch at noon on Saturday, Oct. 30.

The event will be held in Colebank Hall Gym. Tickets are $15 in advance or $20 at the door. The event is sponsored by Thrasher Engineering, Inc. A week of Homecoming 2010 events are planned for Oct. 25-30. For more information, visit or

Outstanding Alumnus
Joseph F. "Bud" Ford, III


Joseph F. "Bud" Ford, III graduated from Fairmont State College in 1973 with a bachelor's degree in business administration and later attended the Pittsburgh Institute of Mortuary Science. Ford is the president of several local funeral homes and has served as a member and past president of the West Virginia Funeral Directors Association (WVFDA). He also served as the first pre-need chairman of the WVFDA and developed the West Virginia Funeral Trust, the first statewide funding vehicle for pre-need funeral deposits. Additionally, Ford has belonged to several national and international funeral associations.

As a lifelong resident of Fairmont, Ford has been involved with the community in many ways. He is a past president of the Fairmont State Foundation, Inc., Board of Directors, Fairmont Jaycees and Associated Businesses of East Fairmont, and he continues to serve many community organizations.

Outstanding Alumna
Deborah Davisson Phelps


Deborah Davisson Phelps graduated from Fairmont State College in 1973. While a student at FSC, she was actively involved in Phi Mu Sorority and other campus organizations. Phelps began her career as a home economics teacher in Maryland in 1974 and has since become a successful middle school principal in Baltimore. She has developed a state-of-the-art food science lab, implemented award winning nutrition curricula and spearheaded the launch of two new middle schools.

Phelps has written and published the book "A Mother for All Seasons," which recounts her life's journey, along with the obstacles she faced as a single mother raising her children, including Olympic gold medalist Michael Phelps.

Alumnus of Achievement
Dr. Thomas Z. Jones


Dr. Thomas Z. Jones graduated from Fairmont State College in 1969 with a bachelor's degree in physics. He continued his education at West Virginia University, where he received a master's in geology in 1970. In 1976, Jones received a Ph.D. in geology from Miami University. From 2000-2009, he served as the president at Armstrong Atlantic State University in Savannah, Ga. During his tenure at AASU, student enrollment increased 30 percent, seven new graduate programs were introduced and three national championships were won. Jones' work has been published in multiple trade journals and magazines. He is active with several community organizations, including the Savannah Area Chamber of Commerce, Savannah Youth Futures Authority and Goodwill Industries of Southeast Georgia.

Alumna of Achievement
Dr. Marilyn Jean Murphy Fore


Dr. Marilyn Jean Murphy Fore graduated from Fairmont State College in 1971 with a bachelor's degree in social science and a certification in secondary education. While at FSC, Fore was actively involved in the Alpha Xi Delta sorority on campus. She continued her education at the University of South Carolina, obtaining a master's degree in both educational administration and economics and, in 1998, received an Ed.D. in curriculum and instruction. Currently, Fore serves as the senior vice president for academic affairs at Horry-Georgetown Technical College in Conway, S.C. The students of Horry-Georgetown voted to have a wing of the science building named in her honor.

Fore is actively involved with several community organizations, including the United Way, the Red Cross and the local chamber of commerce. In 2007, she was awarded an honorary doctor of public service degree by Coastal Carolina University.

Outstanding Young Alumnus
Dr. Scott Rosencrance

Dr. Scott Rosencrance graduated from Fairmont State College with a bachelor's degree in chemistry in 1992. He continued his education at Pennsylvania State University, where he received a Ph.D. in chemistry. Rosencrance has worked at both NALCO Chemicals and Westinghouse-Savannah River National Laboratory, and he experienced much success within both companies. While working for Westinghouse-Savannah, he received a master's degree in business administration from Auburn University. Currently, Rosencrance is the North America technology manager for Kemira Chemicals.

Rosencrance continues to support Fairmont State through his funding of the Cobb, Coleman, Postwa Award. This award recognizes a graduating senior in science/computer science for his or her accomplishments in undergraduate research.

Outstanding Young Alumna
Amanda Beafore


Amanda Beafore graduated from FSC in 2002 with an associate of science degree in nursing and again in 2004 with a bachelor's degree in nursing. She began her career as a registered nurse at Fairmont General Hospital and later worked at WVU Hospital in the PACU. In 2009, Beafore graduated from Mountain State University with a master's degree in nursing and is currently pursuing a doctorate of nursing from West Virginia University. Beafore has served as an adjunct faculty member in the nursing program at Mountain State University and was recently hired as a temporary assistant professor of nursing at Fairmont State. She is actively involved with the American Cancer Society and the 4-H program.