The Winthrop University
MEDAL OF HONOR IN THE ARTS
Christine Fisher grew up in Asheboro, N.C., where in sixth grade she made up her mind that she wanted to be a band teacher. Fast forward to 1998 when she was selected as the South Carolina Teacher of the Year for her work at Southside Middle School in Florence, S.C., representing 47,000 public school teachers in South Carolina. She is the only music teacher ever to hold the honor in the history of the Teacher of the Year program in South Carolina.
Fisher became director of the Arts in Basic Curriculum Project at Winthrop in 2001 where she has been influential in helping advocate for the arts across South Carolina.
Last year, she assisted the S.C. Department of Education in revising the South Carolina 2003 Curriculum Guides to correlate with the latest Visual and Performing Arts Achievement Standards. She was selected as member of the Arts Integration Committee of the Arts Schools Network and worked with the Disney Imaginers to develop arts integration sessions at the National Arts Schools Network Conference held at Disney Land.
Fisher is president elect of the Southern Division of the National Association for Music Education (formerly MENC) and was induced into the S.C. Music Education Association Hall of Fame. She received the Life Time Achievement Award from the SC Theatre Association and the S.C. Verner Award for Arts Education. (Governor’s Award for Excellence in the Arts), as well as the President’s Award for the South Carolina Dance Association. Fisher also has been a clarinetist in the Florence Symphony Orchestra for 34 years. .
The North Carolina Dance Theatre was founded in 1970 by Robert Lindgren, former dean of dance at North Carolina School of the Arts. Moved to Charlotte in 1990, the award-winning company now has a new facility (Patricia McBride and Jean-Pierre Bonnefoux Center for Dance) in the uptown area with six dance studios, community and meeting spaces, and a 200-seat performance venue.
Its 21 professional dancers present five performance series each year and offer an education and outreach program that reaches thousands. It has started a groundbreaking community outreach dance program partnership with Charlotte-Mecklenburg Park & Recreation, called NCDT REACH!, to groom talented dancers.
It recently received national critical acclaim after performing at the Kennedy Center's "Ballet Across America" program in Washington D.C. and has been asked to perform again there in 2013.
The company’s ties to Winthrop’s dance program remain strong. In 2009, Dance Theatre presented the ballet Glass Houses, a collaboration between Dance Theatre’s rehearsal director and choreographer, and a Winthrop professor and sculptor. A dance theatre administrator is a Winthrop alumna, while at least two other faculty members have worked closely with the company.
Charleston Mayor Joseph P. Riley, Jr. is widely considered one of the most visionary and highly effective governmental leaders in America. First elected mayor in December 1975, he is serving an unprecedented tenth term and has said this will be his last.
Under his leadership, Charleston has increased its commitment to racial harmony and progress; achieved a substantial decrease in crime; experienced a remarkable revitalization of its historic downtown business district; seen the creation and growth of Spoleto Festival U.S. A.; added significantly to the city’s park system, including the highly celebrated Waterfront Park; developed nationally-acclaimed affordable housing; and experienced unprecedented growth in Charleston’s size and population.
President Barack Obama presented Riley with the 2009 National Medal of the Arts at the White House for cultivating Charleston’s historic and cultural resources to enhance public spaces, and for revitalizing urban centers throughout our nation as founder of the Mayors’ Institute on City Design. The American Architectural Foundation and the U. S. Conference of Mayors in February 2010 created The Joseph P. Riley, Jr. Award for Leadership in City Design in his honor. Riley has received the Order of the Palmetto, been named South Carolinian of the Year, and given the 1982 Verner Award by the S.C. Arts Commission for outstanding contributions to the arts.
Riley has received an honorary degree from Winthrop among other South Carolina public institutions.
David Bancroft Johnson, founder and first president of Winthrop, is recognized today as one of South Carolina's great educators.
As the superintendent of the Columbia City Schools in South Carolina, he witnessed the chronic shortage of trained teachers and conceived the idea of a teacher training institution. He traveled to Boston to lobby Robert C. Winthrop, chairman of the Peabody Education Board, a philanthropic organization involved in upgrading Southern education, to contribute money to the school's founding.
Winthrop Training School for Teachers, named in honor of its benefactor, Robert C. Winthrop, opened its doors in 1886 with 19 students and one teacher. By 1895, the school moved to Rock Hill where Johnson put emphasis on the arts with a series of concerts, plays, readings, and lectures. On his travels to Europe, Johnson formulated ideas about educational practices and how the arts could be further incorporated into Winthrop life.
Johnson, who served as Winthrop's president from 1886 until his death in 1928, never wavered in his belief in the importance of the arts for a well-rounded education. Twenty-two years after his death Johnson was chosen Educator of the Half Century by leading college and public school educators, newspaper editors, and prominent layman.
One of Johnson's lasting legacies was his commitment and support of an arts program and curriculum, which has manifested itself today in the form of the College of Visual and Performing Art.
Joanne Lunt joined the Winthrop faculty in 1974 as an associate professor and dance specialist in the Department of Health and Physical Education.
During her 26 years, she helped shape the university's dance program, focusing on dance curriculum, dance standards, licensure, teacher education and program accreditation both at Winthrop and in her professional affiliations.
When the School of Visual and Performing Arts was formed in the mid-1980s, dance joined theatre in the newly named Department of Theatre and Dance. Lunt pointed to the approval of the B.A. in dance degree with a dance certification specialization track at Winthrop as a highlight and the culmination of more than 20 years of steady growth in the dance program.
Lunt remained a professor of dance until her retirement in 2000. She called her time at Winthrop a journey that was stimulating and educational because of her active involvement on campus and with professional organizations. She served on and/or chaired every university-wide committee at Winthrop at least once.
Lunt contributed greatly to the South Carolina Alliance for Health, Physical Education, Recreation and Dance, the Southern District Association of the American Alliance for Health, Physical Education, Recreation and Dance, and in the National Dance Association/American Alliance of Health, Physical Education, Recreation and Dance, earning awards from several of the groups.
Murray and Hazel Bailes Somerville have made music central to their lives.
Born in London, England, Murray is a church musician and artistic director of Music City Baroque, Nashville's professional ensemble for historically informed performance. His wife, Hazel '69, is a native of York, S.C., and serves on the faculty of Vanderbilt University as artistic director of the children's choruses at the Blair School of Music.
The couple met in New York City when studying at Union Theological Seminary. Both have known Winthrop organist David Lowry longer than they have known each other.
As a solo organist, choral and orchestral conductor, Murray has performed and recorded widely in the United States, Europe and Africa, including a 1974 recital appearance at Winthrop. As a church musician, he has served congregations in Connecticut, Florida, Tennessee and Harvard University in Massachusetts. Murray was named an Associate of the Royal School of Church Music for his contributions to sacred choral music.
Hazel directs close to 100 children in six choruses at Blair. Her groups have collaborated with the Nashville Symphony, Music City Baroque, and the Boston Camerata, among others, and have recorded for labels such as Decca, Naxos and Erato. Her choruses also have toured widely in Europe and the United States.
Hazel has run workshops and directed choir festivals for the Royal School of Church Music throughout this country. As a church musician, she has served churches in New England, Florida and the Carolinas.
In 2009, Hazel was one of the Winthrop alumni invited to perform during an organ recital commemorating the restoration of the D.B.Johnson Memorial Organ in Byrnes Auditorium.
Carl Blair has made numerous contributions to the arts in South Carolina as an artist, a member of the S.C. Commission of the Arts and as a long-time art faculty member.
For 41 years, Blair was professor of art at Bob Jones University in Greenville, S.C. Retired since 1998, he continues to paint and exhibit throughout the Southeast. He has encouraged the work of other artists as co-founder and president of Hampton III Gallery Ltd. in Taylors, S.C., one of the oldest and most established commercial galleries in the Palmetto State.
Blair’s works, which use nature as his point of departure, have been included in exhibitions in more than 100 museums, galleries and universities and in numerous national and international collections. His works can be found in the Mint Museum of Art in Charlotte, N.C.; Carroll Reece Museum in Johnson City, Tenn.; Emory University in Atlanta, Ga.; Ritz Carlton in San Juan, Puerto Rico; South Carolina State Arts Commission in Columbia, S.C.; and McDonald’s International. In 1995, the Greenville Museum hosted a major retrospective of his work over 40 years.
Blair contributed to the state’s art appreciation as a commissioner of the S.C. Arts Commission from 1987-1996 and as chairman in 1994 and 1996.
In 2005, Blair received the highest award for a South Carolina artist, the Elizabeth O’Neill Verner Lifetime Achievement Award.
Born in Atchison, Kan., Blair holds a Bachelor of Fine Arts from the University of Kansas and a Master of Fine Arts from the Kansas City Art Institute and School of Design. He was enlisted in the U.S. Army from 1953-55.
Wrenn Cook serves as program coordinator for dance at Columbia College and director of the South Carolina Center for Dance Education. Her teaching experience spans more than 30 years; she has taught dance in private studios and higher education settings since 1976, including 12 years in PreK-12 public schools.
Cook is a recipient of the South Carolina Dance Association’s Dance Educator of the Year (1996), President’s Service (2001), Advocacy (2003), and Honor (2007) awards. She has been active in the development of dance standards, curriculum, and assessment at the state level since 1989 and has presented at numerous state and national dance and education conferences. She has written and implemented more than 43 grant projects since 1990 for various arts education initiatives. She was awarded the Faculty Leadership Award in 2009 from Columbia College.
She serves on the boards of directors of several arts organizations in South Carolina. Her national service includes serving as a member of the National Dance Education Organization’s Awards Committee and as national coordinator for the National Honor Society for Dance Arts. Prior to focusing her full energies in the field of dance education, she worked extensively as a professional dancer and choreographer with companies in South Carolina, Philadelphia and New York City.
The Columbia, S.C., native started her teaching career in 1976 at Calvert-Brodie Schools in Columbia and later taught undergraduate dance courses at the University of South Carolina, Columbia College and at Temple University in Philadelphia where she was awarded a graduate assistantship in the Master of Fine Arts in dance program.
Cook holds a Bachelor of Arts in political science from the University of South Carolina and a Master of Education in divergent learning from Columbia College.
Joyce Hall stands out for her many contributions as an opera singer and leading teacher in New York music circles.
She holds a Bachelor of Music cum laude with double majors in voice and music education from Winthrop College and a Master of Music Literature with honors in vocal performance from the Eastman School of Music.
Her vocal coach for many years was the revered Otto Guth. She was a recipient of a Martha Baird Rockefeller Grant for advance study in voice as she began her professional career.
Her extensive operatic background includes many leading roles in well-known operas A specialist in Gilbert and Sullivan, Hall appeared as the heroines of The Pirates of Penzance, H.M.S. Pinafore and The Mikado.
During the last 25 years, Hall has taught master classes in schools and universities across the country. Her operatic students have sung leading roles in the junior companies of the Metropolitan Opera, New York City Opera and regional opera companies of the United States and Europe. Music theatre students from her studio appear in virtually all Broadway casts and tours. The technical focus of her teaching for musical theatre students has been to adapt classical singing techniques to the styles of the contemporary American musical theatre. Her well-known students include Glenn Close, Maureen McGovern, Richard Chamberlain, Hayley Mills, Laurence Guittard, Kate Burton, Becky Gulsvig, Jennifer Westfeldt, Sutton Foster, Lea Michele and Julie Andrews.
Currently an adjunct professor of voice in the musical theatre department of Marymount Manhattan College in New York City, Hall was the recipient of the 2007 Alumni Professional Achievement Award from Winthrop University.
A native of Rock Hill, Hall began nursery school at the MacFeat Nursery School on the campus of Winthrop at an early age. Her K-12 years were spent at Winthrop Training School where there were many opportunities to participate in performance and master seminars at Winthrop. Hall has remained active in the alumni organization as well as taught master classes in the Department of Music.
Born into a family of educators in Chester, S.C., Vivian Ayers has spent her life embracing languages and their relationship with the arts. One of her most treasured accomplishments was a Pulitzer Award nomination in 1952 for her poetry. Trained as a librarian at Rice University, Ayers was granted faculty status in 1965, becoming the first African American to do so. In 1972, her work, "Workshops in Open Fields," was hailed and recommended to the nation as a "prototype of grassroots programming" by the director of the National Endowment of the Arts. Ayers established the Adept New American Museum- a museum for art and history of the American Southwest. Ayers reared a successful family, with three of her children going into the performing arts- jazz musician Tex Allen, Tony-award winning actress Phylicia Rashad, and famed dancer Debbie Allen. Her younger sister is Rep. Bessie Moody-Lawrence, of of the first African-Americans to earn tenure at Winthrop.
As long as he can remember there has been music in Johnny King's life. A musician now for 50 years, King has traveled the world playing music. He moved to New York in the late 1960's, and then joined the Bill Doggett band. A few year's later, he and his friends put together the Fatback Band. Some of King's best memories involve opening his first guitar school in 1975 in St. Albans, N.Y.. He returned to Rock Hill where has has operated an electronics shop for 18 years as well as a Gospel recording studio for young musicians. Eager to recognize other musicians' contributions, King helped form the Rock Hill Musicians Club. The group has celebrated other Rock Hill musicians' work through performances and establishment of a park. King continues to play with a combo of Winthrop faculty members for area events, and he says, "The music is stronger than ever."
Early in 2008 the Charlotte Chamber of Commerce handed out its innovator of the year for the city of Charlotte. The winner: Michael Marsicano. He won earlier awards for building economic empowerment and bridging racial divides from the Urban League of Central Carolinas, as one of the city's most influential leaders from Charlotte Magazine, and for his philanthropic commitment to the Latino community. For the past two years, Marsicano has been invited to the Sundance Preserve with about 30 other public and private sector leaders to explore national arts policy issues. As president and CEO of the Foundation of the Carolinas since 1999, Marsicano oversees a 50-person staff and a $5.8 million annual budget. His organization administers funds for the Foundation for the Arts and Sciences, the United Way Legacy Foundation, and Foundation for the Charlotte Jewish Community. He holds a doctorate degree in public policy sciences, a master's degree in counseling psychology and a psychology degree, all from Duke University.
Born in Columbia, SC, Mark Coplan's greatest contribution was his extensive private collection and promotion of fine and outsider art of South Carolinians. A lawyer and real estate developer who restored many buildings on the National Register of Historic Places, he helped change the way the state's residents look at art and architecture.
Coplan earned a bachelor's degree from Duke University and a juris degree from the University of South Carolina. Upon his death in 2002, he had more than 450 works of art. Much of the art is now on exhibition in the State Museum of South Carolina.
Beryl Dakers has served as director of cultural programming at South Carolina Educational Television since 1982. She currently works as host of ETV Forum and ETV Roadshow and as on-air talent for fundraising.
Dakers earned a bachelor of arts degree from Syracuse University and complete additional graduate coursework at Harvard University and the University of South Carolina. She has won a National Black Journalists Association award, as well as an Emmy nomination. She is a 2002 inductee into the S.C. Black Hall of Fame and received the Elizabeth O'Neill Verner Governor's Award for the Arts in 2000.
Born in 1926, Carlisle Floyd is one of the foremost composers and librettists of opera in the United States today. His operas are regularly performed in this country and in Europe; at least two of them-"Susannah" and "Of Mice and Men"- have entered the permanent operatic repertoire.
Floyd earned B.M. and M.M. degrees in piano and composition with Ernst Bacon at Syracuse University and at the Aspen University. He began his teaching career in 1947 at Florida State University, remaining there until 1976, when he accepted the prestigious M.D. Anderson Professorship in the University of Houston. He is co-founder with David Glockey of the Houston Opera Studio.
Floyd was inducted into the American Academy of Arts and Letters in 2001, and in 2004 was awarded the National Medal of Arts in a ceremony at the White House.
Betty Plumb is widely respected as a leader and arts advocate for South Carolina. Since 1994, she has been executive director of the S.C. Arts Alliance, a statewide nonprofit agency, whose mission is to serve the arts through advocacy, technical assistance and leadership development.
Educated at St. Petersburg Junior College in Florida, Plumb is past chair and current council member of the State Arts Action Network. She has been president of State Arts Advocacy League of America and the National Community Arts Network. In June 2007, The Americans for the Arts, the nation's leading nonprofit organization for advancing the arts, presented Plumb its 2007 Alene Valkanas State Arts Advocacy Award.
Plumb also presents to educators and arts leaders throughout the nation, frequently giving workshops on how citizens can advocate for arts funding. She is a frequent guest lecturer at colleges and universities on arts advocacy.
Harry and Becca Dalton are known throughout York County for their generosity and volunteer efforts. The two Charlotte, N.C., natives helped save Nanny's Mountain near Clover and the Worth Mountain area on the Broad River; participated in the restoration of two historic buildings on Main Street in Rock Hill; and provided funding for the Dalton Gallery at the Rock Hill Center for the Arts, Clinton Junior College library art gallery, Winthrop University Galleries and Winthrop's Department of Theatre and Dance. They are participating sponsors for the new Dalton Downtown Arts Initiative to encourage collaboration among area galleries.
Music and Winthrop have both played a major role in the life of Shirley Fishburne. She earned a bachelor’s degree and master’s degree in organ performance at Winthrop before earning an Ed.D. from the University of North Carolina at Greensboro. She also attended the Haarlem Organ Academy in Holland and is a certified Orff instructor to teach music to children. Fishburne taught music at Winthrop for 17 years, in addition to teaching at other area colleges and schools. She served as co-chair for the steering committee to restore the D.B. Johnson Memorial Organ in Byrnes Auditorium, volunteering her time to present eight organ recitals throughout South Carolina and Georgia to raise awareness of the organ.
Roy Fluhrer, who was “born in a trunk” in Chicago to parents touring with the Federal Theatre Project in the latter stages of the Great Depression, has spent his life in the arts. He won an acting scholarship to Northwestern University as a junior in high school, earning a degree from there and later a master’s degree and Ph.D. from Bowling Green State University. He worked as artistic and managing director of a theatre in Ohio, as chair of the theatre department at the University of Idaho and as vice chancellor of the N.C. School of the Arts. Since 1989, he has headed the Fine Arts Center in Greenville, S.C. the State’s first secondary school for gifted students in the literary, visual and performing arts.
For the nearly 17 years he has spent in South Carolina, including part of the time as president of the S.C. Arts Alliance, he has worked on various local, state and national committees to lend his voice to fulfilling the belief in the power of the arts to transform not only our lives and our educational system but the very fabric of our culture. He is a long-time member of the Arts in Basic Curriculum Project housed at Winthrop.
Since 1984, Pearl Fryar has not stopped molding the shcrubs and trees in his 3-acre yard in Bishopville into topiary art with a gas-powered hedge trimmer. The first recognition of his talents came in the mid-1990s when Fryar was included in a series of art exhibitions at Winthrop and the South Carolina State Museum to spotlight self-taught artists.
With an exhibition at Spoleto USA in 1997 and a feature in Art in America, Fryar’s reputation grew. Tour buses began arriving at his garden by the dozens. He has since appeared on ETV and Home & Garden Television and also has been featured in Sandlapper and Southern Living magazines. Fryar has won numerous awards including being named a S.C. Ambassador for Economic Development by Gov. Mark Sanford in 2003.
Born in Columbia SC, Ray Doughty earned his Bachelor in Music Education degree from the University of South Carolina, a Master Degree in Music Education from East Carolina University, and an Education Specialist Degree in School Administration from Western Carolina University. Mr. Doughty has been an influential music educator and arts education advocate throughout his professional career. He founded the instrumental and choral music programs at Southside High School in Florence, SC, was the band director at TL Hanna in Anderson, SC, and was employed at West Market Elementary School as a music educator until he served as the Anderson District Five Music Coordinator. Some years later he joined Winthrop University as a professor of music, lecturer in music education, and the project director for South Carolina’s Arts in Basic Curriculum (ABC) Project - a nationally recognized arts education reform model. Mr. Doughty is a member of the South Carolina Music Educators Hall of Fame, a recipient of the Elizabeth O’Neill Verner Arts in Education Award and the South Carolina Arts Alliance’s Scottie Award. Currently, he is composing songs for an upcoming play celebrating the history of Fort Mill.
A native of Rock Hill, and a graduate from Winthrop Training School, Harriet Marshall Goode is devoted to the community in which she and her family live. She established the Children's Education Program at the Gibbes Museum of Art in Charleston, SC and has created community spirited programs locally. She has served on the board of the Rock Hill Arts Council and the board of the Culture and Heritage Commission. Currently she is a member of the Patrons of the Winthrop Galleries and supports the annual undergraduate juried exhibitions and serves on the Rock Hill Downtown Board of Directors. She is a recipient of the Rock Hill Arts Council Volunteer of the Year Award, a Career Achievement Award from Converse College, and the Keeper of the Culture Award from the Cultural and Heritage Commission. In addition, since 2001, Harriet has been owner of Gallery 5, a contemporary art-space in Rock Hill. Harriet's award winning paintings have been exhibited regionally and nationally and are owned by collectors throughout the US and abroad.
Charles Randolph-Wright, native of York, SC, has built a dynamic and diversified career in directing, writing, and producing for theatre, television, and film. Once a pre-medical graduate from Duke University, he turned to the arts after studying acting with the Royal Shakespeare Company in London and dance with the Alvin Ailey School in New York City. His directorial film debut, ON THE ONE, recently swept the feature film prizes at the ninth annual American Black Film Festival. Credits for theatre include direction of SENIOR DISCRETION HIMSELF (in D.C.), GUYS AND DOLLS (national tour with Maurice Hines) and ME AND MRS. JONES (starring Lou Rawls, which he also co-wrote). Mr. Randolph-Wright’s play BLUE, starring Phylicia Rashad, broke box office records at Arena Stage, the Roundabout Theatre in New York City, in Los Angeles and subsequently has had productions throughout the United States. His new play CUTTIN'UP premieres at Arena Stage this fall. On television, he was producer and writer of Showtime's acclaimed series LINC'S, directed the international Freestyle campaign for Nike, and most recently directed the new series South of Nowhere.
Georgina Wooton-Roberts (posthumous)
Born in Centralia, Missouri, Dr. Roberts studied music at numerous institutions; including New York Institute of Musical Art and Chicago Musical College. He became Head of Piano and Theory at Kansas State Teachers College, Fort Hayes, where he met his wife Georgina Wooton, then Head of the Art Department. He was Dean of Fine Arts at Phillips College in Enid Oklahoma and later taught in Los Angeles. David B. Johnson, founder and first President of Winthrop University, brought Dr. Roberts to the college as Head of Music in 1925. Dr. Roberts, who remained chair for 38 years, established a master class in piano and voice which ran for 25 years. He earned a bachelor’s degree in English from the University of Missouri, a master’s degree in music from Columbia University and an honorary doctorate degree from the Birmingham Conservatory of Music. Roberts served as president and board member of the S.C. Music Educators Association and established the Rock Hill Choral Society.
Georgina Wooton-Roberts, born in Auburn, Indiana, studied art at De Pauw University, Chicago Art Institute, and Church School of Art, Chicago. She established a career as Professor of Fine Arts at Kansas State Teachers College in Fort Hays and later at California Christian College in Los Angeles. In 1923 Ms. Wooton-Roberts exhibited in a Tri-State Art exhibit which included Kansas. Ms. Wooton-Roberts also exhibited at Los Angeles Museum of History, Science, and Art and was a member of the California Watercolor Society. She came with her husband to Rock Hill for him to work at Winthrop but could not be employed at the same college.
Mrs. Anderson, a native of Spartanburg County, S.C., graduated from Winthrop in January, 1945. She taught home economics at both Reidville and Roebuck high schools in the Upcountry of the Palmetto State before devoting her talents and time to raising four children. One of her children, Elaine Anderson Sarratt, graduated from Winthrop as well. The College of Visual and Performing Arts at Winthrop is honored to be the home of the Vivian Brockman Anderson Endowed Scholarship in Interior Design.
Ms. MacDowell is a native of Gaffney, S.C., and attended Winthrop in the 1970's before establishing herself as an accomplished actress that has resulted in worldwide recognition. She recently completed filming "Beauty Shop" with Queen Latifah and the CBS telepic "Riding the Bus with My Sister" directed by Angelica Huston. She also starred in the poignant drama "Harrison's Flowers, " about photojournalists behind the scenes in the war-torn Balkans with Adrien Brody. She earned praise for her performance as a repressed young wife in Steven Soderbergh's "sex, lies and videotape." The film won the Palme D'or at Cannes and garnered MacDowell the Los Angeles Film Critics' Award for Best Actress as well as a Golden Globe Nomination. Additionally, MacDowell was presented with the coveted Cesar D'honneur for her body of work and the Golden Kamera Award from Germany's Horzu Publications.
Mr. and Mrs. Spratt both hail from York County and are Winthrop Gallery Patrons. Born in Filbert, S.C., Mrs. Spratt received her B.A. in history from Winthrop and an M.A.T. from Smith College. She also studied fine arts at the Corcoran School of Art. She began her career as a history and English teacher in the Fairfax County Schools of Virginia and for the past 15 years has been a practicing visual artist. Her work has been shown in galleries and museums in Washington, DC, and Philadelphia, PA, Maryland, Virginia, and in the Carolinas.
Mr. Spratt has been in the U.S. Representative for the 5th District of South Carolina since 1983. The Honorable Congressman from York, S.C. is currently the assistant to the Democratic Leader in the U.S. House of Representatives. As a member of the Congressional Arts Caucus, John Spratt has supported, every year since his first joining Congress, an increase for Federal Funding for the arts and for the arts in education. This past year, he signed onto a letter supporting funds for American Masterpieces, a new initiative of the National Endowment for the Arts. Congressman Spratt's annual 5th District Congressional Art Competition highlights the visual arts of high school students in the region.
Dr. Twiggs received his Bachelor of Arts degree from Claflin Unicersity, a Master of Arts from New York University, and his doctorate from the University of Georgia in 1970 where he was the first African American to receive an Ed.D. in art. Twiggs served on the task force that helped establish the Smithsonian Institution's National African-American Museum, and he chaired the planning committee for the African-American Museum Association. Twiggs' Accomplishments and honors include the first visual artists bestowed with the Elizabeth O'Neill Verner Award, and inductions into the Claflin University Hall of Fame, the South Carolina Black Hall of Fame, and the National Black Alumni Hall of Fame in Atlanta. Twiggs' career and a visual artist has brought his work to the Studio Museum in Harlem, American embassies in Decca, Togoland, Sierra Leone, Rome, and to Winthrop. His unique batik paintings and other artworks are currently touring the eastern United States in the exhibition, "The Art of Leo Twiggs: A Retrospective." Twiggs serves as a member of the Steering Committee of the Arts in Basic Curriculum, a project of Winthrop's College of Visual and Performing Arts.
As founding members of the Lipscomb Family Foundation, the Lipscombs have established an endowment in the Department of Art and Design at Winthrop University. The name Lipscomb is synonymous with the visual arts in the state of South Carolina. Mr. Lipscomb, an artist himself, helped found the South Carolina Watercolor Society in 1977 and wrote a watercolor instruction book, Go With the Flow.
Ms. Mintich has been a pioneering art educator and artist whose work has helped to establish an understanding of sculpture in the region. She has been a steadfast supporter and advocate of Winthrop University Art and Design students, the Department of Art and Design, and the Winthrop University Galleries. In addition, she has established a scholarship for students majoring in sculpture or jewelry/metals design.
Dr. Myers has a colorful history. He is an historian, playwright, author, and winner of the National Book Award for The Children of Pride, an archive of letters from the Civil War. As an educator, Dr. Myers has taught English at the University of Maryland, the University of London, and a number of other institutions.
As a jazz musician and founder of the family-based band “Plair,” Mr. Plair has “years of music writing and performing experience that is unique to the world of contemporary music”. He has spent over 30 years as a music educator and band director in the public school system. Mr. Plair has been a vital member of the Rock Hill community.
President of the National Art Education Association, he is an educational consultant in the arts. He retired in May 2000 from the South Carolina Department of Education, where he helped develop arts academic achievement standards, established the Arts in Basic Curriculum Project based at Winthrop and established a center for dance education. He gained national recognition for South Carolina as a leader in arts education reform and is a recipient of the 1994 Elizabeth O’Neill Verner Award for Arts Education.
This Tony Award winning costume designer has four shows running on Broadway and has been involved in providing costumes to more than a dozen plays, rock concert performances and other events. From a theatre family, Long is the son of William Long, who established the theatre program at Winthrop.
This internationally acclaimed jazz musician and composer (posthumous award) stayed in his home state of North Carolina despite the allure of big entertainment centers. The Charlotte resident was known as a gifted pianist and composer who wrote songs recorded and performed by such great entertainers as Frank Sinatra, Rosemary Clooney, Eileen Farrell and Jose Ferrer. More than 40 artists have recorded his song, “Blackberry Winter,” written with Alec Wilder.
This philanthropist and arts patron grew up in Rock Hill and graduated from Winthrop in 1958. She and her family, the late Wayne Patrick, and daughters, Trish McGuinn and Kathy Wilson, have supported the university’s arts programs and sports teams. One of Winthrop’s three exhibition spaces is named for her - the Elizabeth Dunlap Patrick Gallery.
This patron of the Winthrop University Galleries is a long-time supporter of the Department of Art. Her late husband, Edmund Lewandowski, chaired the department and worked as a mosaic artist, a painter of marine and coastal views and a community activist. The Edmund D. Lewandowski Gallery is the main gallery space for the university’s student exhibitions.