The Berea College Alumni Association enjoys hearing from Bereans from all over the U.S. and the world. The “Class Notes” section of Berea College Magazine (BCM) reports verifiable news that has been sent to the Association by alumni. BCM reports the news you wish to share with your alumni friends and associates. “Class Notes” reports careers, weddings, retirements, births and other items of importance to our alumni. Please include your class year and name used while attending Berea. Notes may be edited for style and length. Please note that our printing deadlines may delay the appearance of your class news. While we will make every effort to put your information into the next issue of BCM, some delays due to printing schedule may occur. We appreciate your understanding. Submit class notes and photographs via email:


1932 Mary Childers (far right, with classmates at Berea)

Mary Jane Neely Childers celebrated her 100th birthday August 14, 2015. Mary is very alert and self-sufficient; she lives with her daughter Glenda Noble in Wixom, Michigan. Mary attends church regularly, loves to watch the news, reads constantly, crochets and plays canasta. From Wolfe County, Kentucky, Mary asked her father for permission to attend Berea’s high school because she wanted to “own and operate her own hat shop.” Traveling to Berea in 1930, Mary had to take a horse-driven wagon, ride on a train and walk part of the way. During WWII, Mary worked at Stinson Aircraft, where she was a real-life “Rosie the Riveter.” Mary was proud of Berea and visited the College many times over the years to show her children where she attended school. She and her husband, John, always promoted the importance of education to their own children.


June Perry was awarded the 2014 Honorary Alumna Award from Cedarville University in Cedarville, Ohio, to honor her “legacy of giving and faithful support.” June’s family has maintained a close connection to Cedarville for many years. Her daughter, Kathi, graduated from Cedarville in 1976, her grandson, Robert, graduated in 2004 and her granddaughter, Katherine, graduated in 2006. In 1997, June and her husband, Alvin, established the Alvin and June Perry Scholarship, which has helped 23 students continue their education at Cedarville. At the time of her passing, an endowed scholarship will continue to support 40 to 50 students each year. June graduated with a degree in history and political science from Berea College and earned her master’s degree from Eastern Kentucky University. She was a life-long educator, starting her career at Harding Elementary School, then McKell High School, her alma mater, and then as Dean of Girls at Portsmouth High School until her retirement in 1982. June is active in her church, Temple Baptist in Portsmouth, Ohio. She is a member of the Joseph Spencer Chapter of the National Society Daughters of the American Revolution. In December, she will be honored as the oldest chapter member and presented her 60-year pin.


Warren “Gene” Bulman and Verna Bulman, ’49, celebrated their 70th wedding anniversary May 31, 2015. They met when they were students at Berea College. Gene is a WWII veteran and served in China, Burma and India. They have two children, three grandchildren and two great-grandchildren.


Grover C. Miller detailed his life growing up at the Masonic Widows and Orphans Home in Louisville in the article “Masonic Home Became Residence for Breathitt Co. Boy In 1937,” which was published in the July/August 2010 issue of The Kentucky Explorer. After the death of his parents in the early 1930s, he lived in the home until age 16. In the article, Grover wrote of his childhood during that time and then his journey to Berea College.


Ursula Boehm Dickinson, Fd ’48 and her husband, Tom Dickinson, are happily retired. They love being around their grandchildren and two great-granddaughters. Ursula and Tom enjoy watching movies, going to the opera and Broadway musicals.


1955 Nursing Class
1955 Nursing Class

Berea College nursing graduates of 1955 gathered in Berea the last weekend of June to celebrate their 60th anniversary reunion. This class has met annually for more than 15 years. In addition to spending time together, they enjoyed touring the campus and hearing about the current nursing program.


John W. Bond and his wife, Betty P. Bond, celebrated 58 years of marriage in August 2015. John was a historian for the home of Franklin D. Roosevelt, the Washington Office of the National Park Service, the Statue of Liberty and Ellis Island.


Tom Loftis has retired and is playing golf a couple of days a week. He and his wife Joyce Loftis enjoy traveling and cruising.


1965 Richard and Carolene Collins
1965 Richard and Carolene Collins

Richard Collins and his wife, Carolene Pierson Collins, ’90, celebrated their 50th wedding anniversary June 5, 2015, with a dinner at the Historic Boone Tavern Hotel & Restaurant. While in Berea, they asked a student passing by to take their photograph in front of the old Carlton location at the spot where they met in December 1963, while waiting for a Greyhound bus to take them home for Christmas. Both Richard and Carolene are retired educators from Wayne County Schools in West Virginia. They are parents of two sons, Gregg and Brian, and have four grandchildren. Richard enjoys several hobbies, such as woodworking, machine work, blacksmithing, antique hit and miss engines, gardening and cooking. While Carolene’s activities have been limited by a stroke and broken hip, the couple has rediscovered camping and enjoy traveling and the great outdoors in their motor home. They reside at 4954 High Meadow, Lavalette, WV 25535, and would enjoy hearing from old friends.

Sylvia Phelps Jones retired after 35 years of teaching and being a part of the administration in three different schools – Truett-McConnell College, Louisburg College and Wake Forest High.

Elton and Gordie, ’66, White were awarded the Schoenbaum Humanitarian Award at Glitz at the Ritz-Carlton March 5, 2015. Berea College President Emeritus Larry Shinn, Hon ’08 and his wife Nancy Shinn, Hon ’08, along with former Berea College Vice President of Alumni and College Relations, Rod Bussey, ’63 and his wife Helen, ’66, were in attendance. The Whites have supported organizations in the arts, health care, human services, education and their church. Their passion is supporting programs that assist underprivileged children to have the same chance for an education that they had. Elton served on the Berea College Board of Trustees for 18 years. The couple celebrated their 50th wedding anniversary in June 2015.

Veree Thompson Woodbridge and her husband Tom Woodbridge, send good wishes to all of their Berea College friends and invite them to stop by St Mary’s, Georgia for a visit. They love it there!


Floyd Hines and Nancy Hicks Hines, ’64, are both serving with the Peace Corps at Kolonia, Pohnpei, in the Federated States of Micronesia. Floyd is assisting five schools in the process toward the official accreditation required for continued funding. Nancy works with Island Food Community of Pohnpei (, a non-governmental organization established to educate islanders about the nutritional value of local food crops.


1969 Lucy Rozier

Lucy Rozier is the author of the kid’s book, “Jackrabbit McCabe and the Electric Telegraph,” illustrated by Leo Espinosa and published by Schwarts & Wade of Random House in September 2015. The book received a star review from Publisher’s Weekly. For details, visit


John L. Grigsby is eagerly anticipating retirement in less than two years, while his wife, Janice Yeary Grigsby, ’75, is still working in public health.


Roger L. Marcum has been serving as chairman of the Kentucky Board of Education since August 2013. Roger, and his wife, Bobbie Gibson Marcum, ’75, now have four grandchildren.


1979 Thomas Smith
1979 Thomas Smith

Thomas Smith, president of the Rotary Club of Palm Springs, California (2014-15), received the District Club President of the Year Award at the Interior Southern California’s Rotary District 5330 Conference May 16, 2015. Thomas accepted the prestigious award from District Governor Shab El Awar. Thomas was given the 2015 Community Service Award by the Palm Springs Human Rights Commission and was recognized by the Greater Palm Springs Pride organization as Community Grand Marshal in 2014. In 2014, he received the Presidential Call to Service Award, national recognition for demonstrating a commitment to volunteerism. Under Thomas’ leadership, the Rotary Club of Palm Springs received several awards and recognitions, and during the current year, the club increased its membership more than 50 percent. Thomas also is an award-winning author. His book, “Living Leadership,” was honored in the 2015 USA Best Book Awards in the Business and his book “Shades of Leadership,” in the 2014 USA Best Book Awards in the Business.


Lisa Hayes Magee and her husband, Erich Magee, both work for IBM. The couple recently moved to Pittsboro, North Carolina and are enjoying playing music in their spare time.


Donna C. Whitis recently retired from Shelby County public schools after 32 years of teaching and coaching. Donna is currently involved with a research study at the University of Louisville.


Curtis E. Wheeler is currently serving as senior pastor of Fairview Christian Church in Lynchburg, Virginia. He and his wife, Betty Peterson Wheeler, celebrated 25 years of marriage this year.


1990 Kim Jenkins
1990 Kim Jenkins

Married: Kim Jenkins to Steve McClements June 7, 2014. The couple was married by Pastor Greg Matney while surrounded by friends and family at Salt & Light Worship Center in Ashland, Kentucky. Following a reception, the couple honeymooned in Maryland and Delaware. Kim graduated from Berea College with a degree in business administration, and since 1993 has worked as a management consultant for Morehead State University’s Ashland Small Business Development Center. Steve works for Tri-State Industrial Supply in Ashland as a warehouse supervisor. Kim and Steve reside in Ashland.


1991 Sheila and Steven Blalock
1991 Sheila and Steven Blalock

Sheila and Steven Blalock returned to the Historic Boone Tavern Hotel & Restaurant June 2, 2015, to visit the place they first met, and to make good on a reservation they made more than 25 years ago. Both had been assigned freshman labor positions at Boone Tavern and by their sophomore year, Sheila and Steven were engaged. The following year, the young couple were married in Crossville, Tennessee with a group of their classmates in the wedding party: Alvin Allman, ’91; Robin Havens, ’91; Jeff Hensley, ’92; Katherine Silver Kelly, ’91; Rita Payne, ’92; Janie Platt, ’91; and Tom Rabel, ’91. When they returned to Berea after the ceremony, the couple decided to make a reservation for what they considered to be “the nicest room in the tavern” in anticipation of their 25th wedding anniversary. During their return visit to Berea, they stopped by the Alumni Relations office to find a picture of themselves in their caps and gowns published in the Summer 1991 edition of The Berea Alumnus. The couple also walked around campus, took photographs and visited the Berea Farm Store. Steven is the regional farm manager for Pero Family Farms and Sheila is a nurse practitioner. They reside in Crossville, Tennessee and have four children – Joseph, Stephanie, Jamie and Jessica.


Vicky Abrams recently became the innkeeper for the Denny House, a new bed-and-breakfast in Paint Lick, Kentucky. She resides in Paint Lick with her two children, Anna and Jesse. For more information about The Denny House, visit


Married: Jaime Marie Burton to Denis Keith Burton, ’04, August 4, 2013. Jaime was recently named

Director of Research Services and Education at the University of Kentucky Special Collections Research

Center and Denis currently serves as assistant engineer at the Historic Boone Tavern Hotel and Restaurant. They reside in Berea.


Adam Carter completed his doctorate degree in counselor education and supervision at the University of North Carolina at Charlotte in May 2015. He currently resides in Charlotte with his three children — Allyson, Ryann and Landyn – where he is a children and family counselor.


Birth: a son, Ephraim Josiah Wahlstedt, to James Carlo Wahlstedt and his wife Sarah Wahlstedt December 8, 2014.


Crystal Lince and her husband recently bought their first house in Augusta, Georgia.

 Birth: a son, Josiah Willis Dunn, to Brent Dunn and his wife, Jane Taylor Dunn, August 5, 2015. Josiah joins siblings Isaac Allen Dunn and Asalea Jane Dunn.

Joseph Edmonds is now an environmental planner with the U.S. Forest Service in Alaska.


Bo Bashkov and Megan Rodgers Good earned their doctorate degrees in assessment and measurement from James Madison University. Bo and Megan earned their bachelor’s, masters and doctorate degrees together over a nine-year span.


2011 Kayla Kinker and Dominic Suma
2011 Kayla Kinker and Dominic Suma

Married: Kayla Kinker to Dominic Suma in June 2014. They are currently finishing their second year of medical school at the University of Kentucky where they are both part of the Rural Physicians Leadership Program. They are scheduled to graduate in May 2017. Kayla currently serves as one of the managers for the UK student run Free Salvation Army Clinic in Lexington. The couple work with Berea undergraduates to help direct students along their path to diverse health careers. They enjoy reading about fellow Berea alums.



 Birth: a daughter, Ramona Jo Jennings, to Kristin Driggers and Jordan Jennings February 5, 2015. Kristin loves reading the Berea College Magazine.

2011 Kristin Driggers and Jordan Jennings
2011 Kristin Driggers and Jordan Jennings


Nichole Stetten graduated from the University of Florida with her MPH and CPH and will be continuing with her Ph.D. in public health at the University of Florida.

 Birth: a daughter, Terra Athena, born to Benjamin Kirkpatrick and Jessica (Bailey) King April 9, 2015.

Terra arrived one week and two days before the couple celebrated their first wedding anniversary.


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