Awards and Scholarships

2019 Regents’ Hall of Fame Alumni and Friends Award Recipients

Ms. Veronica Adadevoh, nominated by Atlanta Metropolitan State College
Ms. Veronica Adadevoh, a graduate of Altanta Metro, is the largest contributing individual donor to Atlanta Metropolitan State College having established the first endowment fund in 2018 entirely from her philanthropy. She strategically used State Farm’s Employee Matching Gift program to grow the seed money for the endowment and has successfully recruited her colleagues to do the same.

Mr. Donnie L. Cochran, nominated by Savannah State University
A retired Captain, Donnie Cochran’s dedicated service as a U.S. Navy fighter pilot included two tours with the U.S. Navy Flight Demonstration Squadron known as the Blue Angels. Captain Cochran was selected as the first African-American pilot, which was followed by being chosen as the first African-American commanding officer and flight leader. Donnie, long dedicated to his alma mater, is the largest contributing alumni donor in the history of Savannah State. In addition, he facilitated a donation to the campus of a Blue Angel fighter plan replica to commemorate his legacy. Most recently, he was honored by Governor Deal in the naming of the Donnie Cochran Community Complex in his hometown of Pelham.

Mr. Mike Cottrell, nominated by the University of North Georgia
Mr. Mike Cottrell has served in many capacities at University of North Georgia including the Business Dean’s Advisory Council and a Foundation Trustee. Mike made a transformational financial contribution to the College of Business, which was recognized by the naming of the Mike Cottrell College of Business in 2006. He recently made an additional pledge to construct a new business and technology facility on the Dahlonega Campus.

Mr. M. Douglas Ivester, nominated by the University of Georgia
Mr. Doug Ivester is an Emeritus Trustee of the University of Georgia Foundation. A graduate of the Terry College of Business, Doug served as the first Executive-at-Large, sharing his insights with students. Longing to give back to UGA in a more personal way, Doug co-founded the Deer Run Fellows Program where a select group of students attend classes with the College Dean and spend three days at Doug and his wife Kay’s lovely Deer Run Plantation along with corporate, government and community leaders. Doug and Kay have significantly contributed financially to UGA for nearly 50 years, including a transformational pledge to the Terry Endowment for Excellence in support of the new Business Learning Center.

Mr. E.G. Meybohm, nominated by Georgia Southern University
Mr. E.G. Meybohm, a graduate of Georgia Southern and former student athlete is a long-time supporter of student-athletic scholarships. E.G. was inducted into the Georgia Southern Athletics Hall of Fame and was recognized as the Alumni Association Alumnus of the year. A long-time philanthropic contributor to Georgia Southern, E.G. recently pledged the largest one-time cash gift from an alumnus.

2019 Felton Jenkins, Jr. Hall of Fame Faculty Award Recipients


Dr. James Byers, University of Georgia
Dr. James Byers is a sought-after presenter on pressing ecological issues. Known for immersing his students through compelling narratives of ecology, he has an ability to ‘work magic’ with students of all levels with their work often published in premier journals.
Dr. Christopher Clark, Georgia College and State University
Dr. Christopher Clark invites students across the university to explore economics through real world contexts, and through this pedagogy has inspired a number of students to pursue graduate study themselves. As a scholar-teacher, his research enters his classrooms, and his passion for economics inspires students across the disciplines.
Dr. Binh Tran, Georgia Gwinnett College
Dr. Binh Tran’s knowledge of the Information Technology industry led to the creation of an internship program which deeply benefits his IT students. Consistently developing new classroom strategies, Dr. Tran publishes on the intersection of student learning and classroom innovation, making his pedagogy and expertise available to a national audience.


Dr. David Joyner, Georgia Institute of Technology
Dr. David Joyner blends rigor, innovation, and student engagement in the creation of online Computer Science courses. Combining a learner-centered approach with problem-based pedagogy, students thrive on the high level of interaction with Dr. Joyner as they are challenged to become co-investigators of disciplinary issues.


Dr. Tessa C. Andrews, University of Georgia
Dr. Tessa Andrews is a leading scholar in how to effectively incorporate active learning into large lecture classes. She focuses on equity and inclusion, explores ways to help students overcome science misconceptions, and bridges theory and practice – both in the classroom and as a mentor to faculty.
Dr. Joseph A. Mayo, Gordon State College
Dr. Joseph Mayo integrates Boyer’s scholarship of discovery and scholarship of teaching into a systematic investigation of student learning with a focus on authentic assessment and constructivist pedagogy. He is a highly engaged scholar and mentor with a national reputation.

About the Felton Jenkins, Jr. Hall of Fame Faculty Award

Felton Jenkins

When Felton Jenkins passed away on January 1, 2011, he left a legacy of service to Georgia that will resonate for decades. A native of Madison, Georgia, he earned both his undergraduate and law degrees from the University of Georgia and began a distinguished legal career with King & Spalding, which he helped mold into an international legal powerhouse.

Jenkins was appointed to the Board of Regents in 2006 and quickly earned a reputation for being extremely well-prepared for meetings, for an insightful mind and for asking tough but fair questions about the issues that came before the Board. Ever the graceful gentleman, he was widely known for treating people with respect.

Regent Jenkins was driven by a desire that every student in Georgia would have access to top-quality higher education. His focus was always on what was best for the students, and he understood keenly the connection between the success of the System’s students and the success of the state of Georgia. Education, he knew, was the key to all of life’s opportunities and possibilities.

In honor of his dedication to the mission of the University System of Georgia and his life of exemplary service to others, the trustees of the University System of Georgia Foundation have renamed the annual faculty award “The Felton Jenkins, Jr. Hall of Fame Faculty Award.”

Emily Followill and Alan Jenkins accept a gift to honor the memory of their father, Felton Jenkins, Jr., from Regent Dink NeSmith

Emily Followill, Alan Jenkins, Regent Dink NeSmith

2019 Elridge McMillan Lifetime Achievement Award Recipient

Mrs. Sandra Deal

As Former First Lady, Sandra Deal is distinguished in the state of Georgia as an educator, author, historian, volunteer, and lifelong learner. A passionate advocate for literacy and student achievement, Mrs. Deal has traveled the state to read to students in 800 schools and pre-K programs throughout all of Georgia’s 159 counties and 181 school districts. As a former teacher of 15 years in the Hall County School System, Mrs. Deal believes that reading is the gift that keeps on giving and that education is the key for any student to achieve future success. Her ideology has been realized over the years through her tireless efforts to promote volunteerism, community service, and literacy initiatives.

Mrs. Deal serves as a member of the board of trustees for Georgia College, her alma mater. She also serves as co-chair of the Georgia Literacy Commission and chairwoman of the Georgia Children’s Cabinet. In 2017, Mrs. Deal became co-chair the Georgia Older Adults Cabinet, seeking to address policy matters and bring awareness to the welfare of Georgia’s older residents.

As part of her work to improve literacy rates across the state, she plays a key role in Read Across Georgia month in March and has partnered with the Get Georgia Reading campaign, a statewide initiative to improve reading proficiency levels for all students by the end of third grade.

To promote community involvement and encourage a culture of volunteerism throughout Georgia, Mrs. Deal launched an initiative known as With a Servant’s Heart in 2011. The campaign introduced Georgians to community service programs and volunteer opportunities in every corner of the state.

Mrs. Deal co-authored a book in 2015, Memories of the Mansion, with Kennesaw State University professors Dr. Catherine Lewis and Dr. Jennifer Dickey. Memories of the Mansion tells the rich history of the Governor’s Mansion and preserves the past through stories of Georgia’s first families who lived there.

Elridge McMillan, the longest-serving member of the Board of Regents, was the inaugural recipient of the University System of Georgia Foundation Board of Trustees’ Lifetime Achievement Award. In recognition for Regent Emeritus McMillan’s long career serving higher education, the award was officially named The Elridge McMillan Lifetime Achievement Award in 2006. The award is given in recognition of extraordinary service to higher education in Georgia.