ETSU names Quillen Scholarship recipients

JOHNSON CITY—East Tennessee State University has named the 2008 recipients of James H. Quillen Scholarships.

The $4,000 scholarships were created through a bequest to ETSU by the late James H. Quillen, who represented Tennessee’s First Congressional District in the U.S. House of Representatives for 34 years.

Quillen requested that endowment proceeds be used to fund scholarships for graduate and undergraduate students from the First Congressional District on the basis of scholastic endeavors, school and community leadership, volunteer services and activities, other extracurricular activities, and work experience.

Among those selected as undergraduate-level Quillen Scholars are:

Blountville: Diana Smith of Blountville is the wife of Kevin Smith and the mother of four children. An ETSU senior, she is working toward an interdisciplinary degree with a concentration in elementary education. She attended Northeast State Technical Community College and Virginia Highlands Community College, and earned an entry in Who’s Who Among American Junior College Students. A member of the prestigious Phi Kappa Phi honorary society and the National Scholars Honor Society, she is also a member of the Student Teachers Association, the Tennessee Education Association, and the National Education Association. She is the recipient of a Collegiate All-American Scholarship and serves as a foster parent for the State of Tennessee. Among her many volunteer activities is working in after-school programs at Fairmont and Gray Elementary schools. She is the daughter of Tifton and Susan Sanders of Murfreesboro.

Bluff City: Kelley Cross, daughter of Phil and Janice Cross of Bluff City, will enter ETSU in the fall to study biology. She is a member of the Class of 2008 at Sullivan East High School. A keyboardist in the Bluff City Baptist Church praise band, she was a Queen of Hearts participant and raised $18,000 for the American Heart Association.

Church Hill: Amanda Marsh is an ETSU sophomore majoring in mass communications with a concentration in journalism. She is a member of the Society of Professional Journalists and a staff writer for ETSU’s student newspaper, the East Tennessean.  A volunteer at The River women’s shelter in Johnson City, she is vice president of Alpha Lambda Delta honorary society. She is the daughter of Darryl and Debbie Marsh of Church Hill.

Elizabethton: Shelby Smith, son of Lynn and Lisa Dawn Smith of Elizabethton, is an ETSU freshman majoring in music.

Erwin: Bonnie Guinn is a 2008 honors graduate of Unicoi County High School. She participated in the ETSU Upward Bound program. During her high school career, she was a member of the National Honor Society, Key Club, and Beta Club. She is the daughter of Gary Guinn of Erwin.

Greeneville: Amanda Willett, daughter of Rickey and Patricia Willett of Greeneville, will enter ETSU in the fall as a freshman. She is a member of the 2008 graduating class at West Greene High School.

Johnson City: Erica Nicole Edmisten is a junior at ETSU, where she is majoring in chemistry with a concentration in biochemistry. She is a member of several national honorary societies: Phi Kappa Phi, Golden Key, Sigma Alpha Lambda, Alpha Sigma Lambda, and Gamma Beta Phi. She is the daughter of Brenda Sneyd and Charles Edmisten, both of Johnson City.

Morristown: Alaina Akens is a 2008 graduate of Morristown East High School, where she was editor of the yearbook. A member of Trinity United Methodist Church, she was named in Who’s Who Among American High School Students. She plans to major in computer science and is the daughter of Greg Akens of Morristown and Kim Dockery of Bulls Gap.

Justin Frazee will transfer from Union University to ETSU as a junior majoring in digital media. He also attended Walters State Community College, where he was a member of Phi Theta Kappa honorary society and was named in Who’s Who Among Students in American Junior Colleges. He is the son of David and Bonnie Frazee of Morristown.

Roan Mountain: Mary Whitehead is a 2008 graduate of Cloudland High School where she was a data analyst for the Cloudland After-School Runway Program. She plans to study business administration, concentrating on accountancy. A member of Morgan Branch Free Will Baptist Church, she is the daughter of Jeff and Carmelita Whitehead of Roan Mountain.

Among those selected as graduate-level Quillen Scholars are:


Blountville: Christina Caflisch received a bachelor’s degree in exercise science from the University of Tennessee-Knoxville in December and will enter the ETSU doctoral program in physical therapy next fall. She is the daughter of George and Emily Caflisch of Blountville.

Bristol: Brooke Mann, who is working toward a master of arts in teaching degree, is the daughter of Terry and Lydia Mann of Bristol.

Church Hill: Ashley Chapman, a graduate of King College with a bachelor’s degree in business administration and economics, is a student in the ETSU master of arts in teaching program and is a graduate assistant to Dr. Norma MacRae, ETSU’s Vice Provost for Public Service and Dean of the School of Continuing Studies. Chapman is a member of the National Education Association for Students and the National Scholars Honor Society. A member of First Baptist Church in Gate City, Va., she serves there as a Girls in Action leader and basketball coach. She is the daughter of Craig and Debbie Chapman of Church Hill.

Elizabethton: Stephanie Jeter earned a bachelor’s degree from Milligan College and has entered the ETSU doctoral program in physical therapy. A member of the American Physical Therapy Association, she is also part of the ETSU bluegrass program’s “Old Time Ramblers” as well as playing with the Johnson City Symphony Orchestra and the Black Tie Brass Quintet. She and her husband, Robert Jeter, reside in Elizabethton, as does her mother, Hettie Lyons. She is also the daughter of the late Darrel Lyons.

Greeneville: Christine Roser Ingram of Greeneville is the mother of two teenagers and is the Gifted Education Program Assistant for Greene County Schools grades K-8. A member of the prestigious Phi Kappa Phi honorary society, she is pursuing a master’s degree in special education. She is the daughter of Carl and Joyce Roser of Greeneville.

Kara Kahley received two bachelor’s degrees—one in management and one in Spanish—from ETSU, and she is now studying toward a master of business administration degree. An active volunteer, she was presented with a 2007 Harold Love Outstanding Community Involvement Award, presented by the Tennessee Higher Education Commission (THEC). Kahley represented the ETSU Graduate and Professional Student Association at the national association’s Southeast Regional Conference in Miami earlier this year, and she is currently an intern with the Johnson City Development Authority. She is the daughter of Elwood and Kathe Kahley of Greeneville and the granddaughter of Harvey and Doris Erb of McClure, Pa., and the late Elwood Sr. and Marjorie Kahley.

Amy Ellen Laws, daughter of Johnny and Sandy Laws of Greeneville graduated summa cum laude from ETSU in 2005 with a bachelor’s degree in French. She is now studying for a master’s degree. During her undergraduate career, she was the president of the student French Club and of Pi Delta Phi French honorary society. She participated in a summer program in France and received the 2005 Faculty Award from the ETSU Department of Foreign Languages. A member of Phi Kappa Phi and Phi Theta Kappa honorary societies, she was also involved in ETSU theatre and was named Best Actress in a Musical in 2003 for her work with the Johnson City Community Theatre.

Johnson City: Kawanda (Kay) Collake, mother of a four-year-old son, is working toward a master of social work degree. She is vice president of the ETSU chapter of the National Alliance on Mental Illness, a Court Appointed Special Advocate (CASA) for abused and neglected children, and a Pre-Certification Specialist at Woodridge Hospital. A member of Grace Fellowship Church, she is the daughter of Robert and Nyoka Bentley of Johnson City.

Patricia Cross, daughter of John and Charlotte Cross of Johnson City, is pursuing a master’s degree in biology.

Joshua Gibson earned an ETSU degree in exercise science and is now seeking a doctorate in physical therapy. He has been a member of the ETSU cross-country and track teams and was named on the Southern Conference Athletic Academic Honor Roll every semester of his undergraduate career. As a member of the Student Athlete Academic Committee, he has volunteered with Toys for Tots and Campus Cleanup. Currently a physical therapy technician at Sycamore Shoals Hospital, he is also employed by Mazer Corporation and Richard Tittle Cleaning Services, in addition to being self-employed as a landscaper and personal trainer. He is a member of Immanuel Baptist Church and the State of Franklin Track and Field Club. He and his wife, Rosanna, reside in Johnson City, and his parents, Allen and Teresa Gibson, live in Limestone.

Charity Higgins of Johnson City is the wife of Eric Higgins and mother of one child. She was awarded a bachelor’s degree in criminal justice and Spanish by ETSU and is now studying for a master of arts in teaching degree. She previously earned an associate degree in general studies at Northeast State Technical Community College. A member of the Student Teacher Education Association and Criminal Justice Society, she holds membership in Pi Gamma Nu and Kappa Delta Pi honorary societies. She is a member of River of Life Church, where she works in the nursery and as a Vacation Bible School teacher. In addition, she has served as a team captain for the “March for Babies” event sponsored by the March of Dimes. She is the daughter of Linda Addison of Kingsport and Gaines Fields of Bluff City.

Jeffrey P. Nowiski, a resident of Johnson City, is pursuing a graduate degree in applied computer science at ETSU. He is the son of Cindy Nowiski of Bristol and Dave Nowiski of Knoxville.

Caitlin Quinn holds an undergraduate degree in anthropology from the University of Tennessee-Knoxville and is now seeking a graduate degree in physical therapy at ETSU. A participant in intramural sports, she resides in Johnson City, as do her parents, Bruce and Pat Quinn.

Jonesborough: Jonesborough resident Aprele Fitzgerald, a summa cum laude graduate of ETSU, is returning to the university to do graduate work in biology. She was an Honors-in-Discipline undergraduate and recipient of a Dr. Herman O’Dell Scholarship. A seasonal interpretive ranger at Warriors Path State Park, she is the raptor keeper at Bays Mountain Nature Preserve, a program assistant at the ETSU and General Shale Brick Natural History Museum and Visitor Center at the Gray Fossil Site, and a member of the Friends of Roan Mountain State Park. She is the daughter of Sarah Neff and sister of Rachel Frye, both of Westmoreland.

Kingsport: Michelle Greene, daughter of Alice Greene of Kingsport, is earning a master’s degree in social work. She is a member of the Masters of Social Work Student Association.

Knoxville: Ashley Denise Frazier, daughter of Stan and Sue Frazier of Knoxville, earned a bachelor’s degree in microbiology at the University of Tennessee-Knoxville, and she is now working toward an advanced degree in biomedical science at ETSU. A member of the Biomedical Science Graduate Student Association, she also serves as secretary of the Tennessee State Judo Committee through Tennessee Judo, Inc.

MaDonna Ann Shipe holds an ETSU bachelor’s degree in public health and will enter the Master of Public Health program. She is president of the National Panhellenic Council and a member of Delta Sigma Theta sorority, which she served as treasurer. A peer mentor, she was a Quest Leader, member of the 3.0 Leader’s Club, and participated in the ETSU Gospel Choir, acting as that organization’s chaplain and secretary. She has a student placement in the College of Public Health where she has helped create the new college’s Web site, and she is a member of the Public Health Student Association. She is the daughter of Vivian Shipe of Knoxville and Marcel Shipe of Clovis, Calif.

Mosheim: Wyatt Jules DesOrmeaux, son of Robert and Lorraine DesOrmeaux of Mosheim, attended the University of Florida and Tusculum College before entering the master’s degree in mathematics program at ETSU. He collaborates with the United States Department of Agriculture in new crop development for Tennessee. A member of Gamma Beta Phi and Kappa Mu Epsilon honorary societies, he is the recipient of a 2008 ETSU Excellence in Teaching Award for his work as a graduate teaching assistant.

Piney Flats: William D. Rader Jr. graduated cum laude from ETSU with a bachelor’s degree in biology and is now studying in the doctoral degree program in physical therapy. He is the son of William and Linda Rader of Piney Flats and the grandson of Marjorie Rader of Newport.

Sevierville: Jennifer Gannaio and her husband, John, reside in Sevierville and are the parents of six children. She holds a bachelor’s degree from Monmouth University and has taken graduate-level classes at Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary. A member of Kappa Delta Pi honorary society, she is a student in the ETSU master of arts in teaching program. She is a member of the Tennessee Reading Association, the Association of Christian Schools, and The Church at The Gathering as well as volunteering with The Lord’s Child Ministry.

Megan Hillard is studying for a doctoral degree in physical therapy. She is the daughter of Lonas and Jana Hillard of Sevierville.

Out of state:

Jessica Wellington, a graduate of Tusculum College with a bachelor’s degree in athletic training, is studying for a doctoral degree in physical therapy at ETSU. She was named the Tennessee Athletic Trainers Society 2005 Athletic Training Student of the Year and is a member of Alpha Chi National Honor Society. She is the daughter of Laurie and Jon Nuta of Davie, Fla., and Bill and Ellen Wellington of Southwest Ranches, Fla. She is engaged to Jonathan Brewer of Sevierville.