Author Archives: ECU News Services

Higgs to lead new transportation plan for Atlanta

Clyde Higgs ‘99 of Charlotte, executive vice president of operations and business development for the N.C. Research Campus (NCRR) in Kannapolis, is resigning to be chief operating officer of a group implementing a new transportation plan for Atlanta.

Clyde Higgs

Clyde Higgs

Higgs has led economic development recruitment at NCRR for the past nine years.

In his new job Higgs will be vice president and chief operating officer of Atlanta Beltline, the entity overseeing redevelopment of 22 miles of abandoned railroad tracks running through the center of Atlanta. The old rail line will be transformed into 33 miles of trails, 1,300 acres of parks and 5,600 housing units. Its estimated completion date is 2030.

NCRR is a public-private venture aimed at redeveloping industrial property in Kannapolis, which once was the world’s largest producer of textiles. The state gives NCRR about $30 million a year to support its research programs. The funding is directed through the UNC system. Several UNC system campuses have a presence there.

Higgs is credited with recruiting 20 partners in NCRR, including major universities and international food companies such as General Mills. The center now employs about 1,000 people.

Before joining NCRR, Higgs was the executive director of the technology incubator program at the University of North Texas-Health Science Center. Before working in Texas, he was director of the Office of Technology Transfer & Commercialization at N.C. A&T State University.

Early in his career, Higgs was executive assistant to the president of the N.C. Community College System

Higgs is a graduate of the University of South Alabama who earned a graduate degree in public administration from East Carolina University in 1999.

Higgs recently was elected vice chair of the N.C. State Board of Community Colleges. He chairs the search committee seeking a new president of the state community college system.

— Steve Tuttle

Pirate Alumni Legacy Brunch set for Sept. 27

Families with two or more generations of Pirates including a current student are invited to the Pirate Alumni Legacy Brunch on Sunday, Sept. 27 at East Carolina University.

Hosted by the East Carolina Alumni Association in partnership with the Office of Parent and Family Programs, this annual event recognizes tradition and loyalty to East Carolina.

Students and their family members will enjoy a catered brunch in the company of fellow Pirates in the Great Rooms of Mendenhall Student Center. Participants will be given a pin to use in the pinning ceremony that they may keep. There will also be a family photo area where a professional university photographer will take free family snapshots.

This is an inclusive event; legacies are not limited to parent-child, and may include aunts, uncles, grandparents, stepparents, guardians, etc. Others who did not attend ECU but are in the student’s immediate family may also attend the brunch.

To attend, register by Monday, Sept. 21. Either students or other family members can register their whole party on one form, available online or for printing and mailing/faxing. Register well in advance, as this event may sell out prior to the registration deadline.

Attire is purple and gold business casual. The cost is $12.50 for alumni association members, including student Forever Pirates. For non-members, the cost is $22.50.

To find out more, contact Assistant Director of Alumni Programs Megan Howard ’07 at 252-328-5557 or howardme14@ecu.edu.

In Memoriam – Clyde Thomas ‘Tom the Jazzman’ Mallison

'Tom the Jazzman' Mallison (Photo by Cliff Hollis)

‘Tom the Jazzman’ Mallison
(Photo by Cliff Hollis)

Clyde Thomas “Tom the Jazzman” Mallison of Greenville, a benefactor of Joyner Library who was widely known for his music program on Public Radio East, died Sept. 6. He succumbed from injuries suffered in a car wreck that occurred shortly after he had completed his show on WTEB New Bern. He was 75.

Mallison, who graduated from East Carolina University in 1966 and was SGA president that year, worked at the Du Pont plant in Kinston for 32 years before retiring in 1998. He hosted the Sunday night jazz program on WTEB for more than 30 years. Before he began his show with WTEB, he broadcast with WOOW AM in Greenville and WITN FM.

In 2009, Mallison donated thousands of jazz music albums from his personal collection to Joyner Library. The recordings span a variety of the sub-genres of jazz, including ragtime, Dixieland, bebop, free, and fusion. The collection now resides in the ECU Music Library.

The Alumni Association honored him with its Distinguished Alumni Service Award in 1998 and its Robert Wright Society Leadership Award. He was a former member of the ECU Board of Visitors, a member of the Chancellor’s Society, a member of the College of Education Advancement Council and a former president of the S. Rudolph Alexander Performing Arts Series.

He is survived by two children and his wife, Frances Mallison, an ECU graduate who is a retired librarian with the Pitt County Schools.

Memorial contributions may be made to Public Radio East, 800 College Court, New Bern, N.C., or First Presbyterian Church Youth Projects Fund, 1400 S. Elm St., Greenville, N.C.

In Memoriam – Dr. Charles E. Stevens

Dr. Charles E. Stevens of Greenville, who taught piano at East Carolina University for 30 years before accepting emeritus status in 1990, died Sept. 4. He was 89. Stevens, who received his master’s degree in music at ECU in 1954 and his doctorate in music from UNC Chapel Hill in 1957, was dean of the School of Music for the last six years of his tenure.

Stevens

Stevens

He recently was honored for more than 50 years of service to the Phi Mu Alpha Sinfonia national music fraternity.

Survivors include daughters Margaret Mauney of Winston-Salem, a 1976 ECU graduate, and Mary Charles Jenkins, a 1979 graduate, and son-in-law Jack Jenkins, a 1978 graduate, both of Morehead City.

Memorial contributions can be made to the Charles E. and Margaret S. Stevens Endowment, ECU Foundation, 2200 S. Charles Blvd., Greenville, NC 27858.

— Steve Tuttle

Athletics director returns from leadership conference

Athletics Director Jeff Compher aboard a Coast Guard vessel off the coast of Florida

Athletics Director Jeff Compher aboard a Coast Guard vessel off the coast of Florida

After spending a week observing America’s top military leaders, East Carolina University Athletics Director Jeff Compher said he is determined to put a greater emphasis on student athletes.

“I need to focus on people to make us better – not facilities or equipment,” Compher said after returning from the Senior Leader Engagement Program (SLEP) sponsored by U.S. Secretary of Defense Ashton Carter.

“They kept focusing on people, not assets,” Compher said about the briefings he received from senior officers at the Pentagon and at four large military bases.

“I learned that the military really believes in the principle of commander’s intent, which is that the person at the top sets the objective but every other decision is delegated down. The whole idea is to emphasize people over things.”

Delegating authority allows lower-ranking soldiers to feel they are responsible for and in control of their duties, Compher said.

Master Sgt. John Perusek salutes the U.S flag during morning reveille at Homestead ARB, Fla., prior to the start of the day's winter training activities.

Master Sgt. John Perusek salutes the U.S flag during morning reveille at Homestead ARB, Fla., prior to the start of the day’s winter training activities.

“I talked to one (enlisted soldier) on a ship, and he was quick to inform me that this was his deck and those were his ammunition racks. That’s what we need to do here in sports – make our athletes believe that they are in control of what happens in a game, not their coaches.”

Established in 1948, SLEP is the oldest outreach program in the U.S. Department of Defense and the only event sponsored by the secretary. About two dozen leaders from the worlds of business and higher education were invited to the event, which was held Aug. 23-30. Senior representatives of the Army, Navy, Air Force, Marines and Coast Guard served as lecturers.

The intent of the program was to familiarize participants with the challenges faced by men and women in uniform, both on and off the battlefield.

Compher received briefings at the Pentagon, and then toured two military bases in Florida. He participated in a demonstration of parachute rigging at Ft. Bragg and observed a Naval Special Warfare demonstration at a Norfolk military base.

At Ft. Bragg, Compher met Army Master Sgt. John Perusek, a 25-year veteran of the Green Berets. “He told me something that stuck with me,” Compher said about Perusek. “He said in the military what we do is to look past our differences to achieve a common goal. That’s a great motto for us to follow in sports because we have student athletes from all backgrounds and our challenge is to lead them toward a common goal.”

Perusek also is a member of the elite Black Daggers U.S. Army parachute demonstration team who will parachute into ECU’s Dowdy-Ficklen Stadium at the Nov. 7 home football game during Military Appreciation Day.

Overall, Compher said he was struck by how much the military has in common with college sports.

“They deal with young people; we do too. They have those people for a limited amount of time; we do too. Like the military, we are dealing with people who have made a commitment to do something at the highest level, and we have to be able to train and lead our student athletes so they can accomplish their goals.”

— Steve Tuttle

Fenich Inducted into DMAI’s Inaugural Hall of Fame

Dr. George Fenich (center) receives the Hall of Fame Award from Michael Gehrisch, President and CEO of DMAI (right), and Jason Fulvi, VP of Sales for the Pittsburgh Convention and Visitors Bureau (left). (Contributed photo)

Dr. George Fenich (center) receives the Hall of Fame Award from Michael Gehrisch, President and CEO of DMAI (right), and Jason Fulvi, VP of Sales for the Pittsburgh Convention and Visitors Bureau (left). (Contributed photo)

East Carolina University professor Dr. George Fenich was inducted into the first Hall of Fame class by Destination Marketing Association International, the world’s largest resource for convention and visitors bureaus.

Fenich is a professor in ECU’s School of Hospitality Leadership, which is housed in the College of Business.

The Hall of Fame Award recognizes individuals who have changed the future of destination marketing for the better, made significant contributions to the advancement of the industry and have shaped travel marketing. It is the highest honor that DMAI can bestow.

“DMAI as an organization recognized the importance of leadership in our industry to sustain our 100 year history and grow destination marketing into the multibillion dollar industry that it is today,” Michael Gehrisch, president and CEO of DMAI, said. “Our goal is to shine a spotlight on these pioneers, champions and influencers, and allow our members around the globe an opportunity to get to know them and their works.”

Fenich has helped shape the destination marketing industry for almost three decades and has dedicated his academic career to the advancement of research, scholarship and teaching. He was an industry practitioner before moving into academe.

Today, in addition to his role as a leading academic in the meetings and conventions field, Fenich provides cutting-edge research and analysis to destination marketing organizations across the country through his consulting firm, Fenich & Associates. He has published three industry textbooks, more than 60 peer-reviewed journal articles, and has made more than 150 presentations in the U.S. and abroad to benefit the industry. He has served as a member of DMAI for more than 20 years, including work on the organization’s Student Educator Advisory Council and chairing the DMAI Case Study Competition. He has delivered education programs around the world, from China and Japan to Turkey, France, Mauritius, and South Africa.

ECU student quoted in The Wildlife Society

Albecker (Photo from Coastal Resources Management PhD program)

Molly Albecker Photo from Coastal Resources Management PhD program)

ECU doctoral student Molly Albecker was quoted in an Aug. 28 article posted by The Wildlife Society about her research presented at the Ecological Society of America’s annual conference in Baltimore. Albecker is a student in ECU coastal resources management program.

Her research focused on adaptations in frogs to salt and brackish water.
View the article here.

Ballard announces phased retirement program availability

Chancellor Ballard has announced the availability of the Phased Retirement Program to eligible faculty members. Eligible members receive an invitation to participate through campus mail. Individuals who did not receive a letter but believe they are eligible should contact their vice chancellor.

Additional details about the Phased Retirement Program are available at http://www.ecu.edu/cs-acad/provostvc/formsandinfo.cfm.

Questions about the program should be directed to Linda Ingalls at 252-943-8584 or ingallsl@ecu.edu (Office of the Provost) or Lisa Sutton at 744-1910 or suttonli@ecu.edu (Division of Health Sciences).

ECU student awarded BCIA certification scholarship

An East Carolina University student was one of six recipients nationwide to receive a prestigious scholarship.

Christina Brown-Bochicchio

Christina Brown-Bochicchio

Doctoral student Christina Brown-Bochicchio received the 2015 Francine Butler Scholarship from the Biofeedback Certification International Alliance. The scholarship covers fees for BCIA certification in biofeedback and honors the contributions of Dr. Francine Butler, former executive director of BCIA.

Brown-Bochicchio of Calif. is pursuing a degree in rehabilitation counseling and administration in the College of Allied Health.

She works as a clinical coordinator in the Center for Applied Psychophysiology in the College of Health and Human Performance.

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