Institutional Advancement

Thank You to our Football 2023 Honorary Captains!

After an exhilarating 6-5 season, Barton Football has come to a close. Football provides us with the opportunity to amplify our connection with the community, and we are grateful for our supporters who cheer on our student-athletes from the sidelines. In the spirit of gratitude, we would like to extend a special thank you to our 2023 Honorary Captains. Selected for their impact in the Wilson and Barton communities, these individuals represent the tenacity and loyalty of a Bulldog. It is our honor to publicly recognize them during the football season.

Left to right: Vance and Wortley Forbes

August 31 vs. Chowan University (Employee Appreciation Day) – Vance and Wortley Forbes are long-time leaders and supporters of Barton College. Natives of Wilson, N.C., the Forbes family’s impact on this institution is extensive. Vance faithfully served on the Board of Trustees as an active member for 15 years, and has been serving as a Trustee Emeritus since 2014. His service to the Board followed in the footsteps of his father, the late Vance T. Forbes, Sr., who was a longtime Trustee and friend of the College. Vance’s keen insight and wisdom has proven to be invaluable to the College’s governing process, and his leadership as a Trustee and Trustee Emeritus has helped guide significant decisions for Barton’s future. Vance and Wortley are active community members involved in many local charity boards and in their church. Thank you, Vance and Wortley, for your generous support and tireless commitment to Barton College over the years.

Left to right: Ken Tyler, Kelly Taranto, Denise O’Hara ’93, Krystal Cox ’07, and Dr. Doug Searcy

September 16 vs. UVA-Wise (Healthcare Appreciation Day) – Honorary Captains for Healthcare Appreciation Day was Denise O’Hara ’93, executive director of the Healthcare Foundation of Wilson, and Krystal Cox ’07, member of the Board of Directors for the foundation. The Healthcare Foundation of Wilson invests in collaborative efforts that impacts and measurably improves the health and well-being of all Wilson residents. Barton College recognizes and celebrates the work of the Healthcare Foundation. Barton College also celebrates Denise O’Hara for her nearly decade of leadership for the Foundation since its inception in 2014. Ms. O’Hara has announced her retirement at the end of 2023. Thank you Healthcare Foundation for providing promising, sustainable solutions to keep Wilson healthy.

Left to right: Jordan Terrell ’24, Bear Huggins ’24, Barry Dillehay ’77, Dr. Gregg DeMar, Milton Chandler ’24, and Quayon Gilbert ’24

October 7 vs. Newberry College (Breast Cancer Awareness Day) – Dr. Gregg DeMar, a longstanding member of the Board of Trustees including past Chairman, as well as Mr. Barry Dillehay ’77 , the current vice-chairman of the Board of Trustees. Dr. DeMar had a successful career as a lead executive with IBM Corporation while Mr. Dillehay was a top business leader with Universal Leaf Tobacco. The Barton Board of Trustees voted unanimously to bring football back to the College several years ago. These leaders were the ones who had courage and foresight to add football — for the purpose of making more pathways for the students to receive a college education, and at the same time, increase the energy and vibrancy of Barton College and greater Wilson community. Thank you, Dr. DeMar and Mr. Dillehay, for your time and commitment to Barton College.

Left to right: Ken Tyler, Tom Parham ’63, and Dr. Doug Searcy

October 21 vs. Wingate University (Homecoming) – Mr. Tom Parham, a 1963 graduate of Atlantic Christian College, coached 38 years of collegiate men’s tennis at both his alma mater and later Elon University posting a 77% winning percentage and three national championships including Barton’s first two national championships winning the 1979 and 1984 NAIA men’s tennis titles. Parham also coached a total of 16 All-Americans and was a four-time NAIA National Coach. Not surprisingly, Parham is a member of seven total athletic hall of fames and is just one of two alumni who hold the distinction of being members of both Barton College’s Athletic Hall of Fame and the North Carolina Sports Hall of Fame. In 1979, Parham was awarded the Order of the Long Leaf Pine, the highest honor for service back to the State of North Carolina. Parham has been a strong supporter of his alma mater giving back of his time and talents in addition to financially supporting to help grow the mission of Barton today.

Left to right: Woody Harrison, Sandy Arens, and Bill Vaughan ’68

November 4 vs. Limestone University (Military Appreciation Day) – For the last home game of the season, we had 3 Honorary Captains. Mr. Stewart S. Arens served honorably in the United States Navy for 30 years. Sandy graduated from the Navy Officers Candidate School in Newport, R.I., in 1961.  He then spent five years in uniform on the USS Randolph, an aircraft carrier, as a Surface Warfare Officer where one of his duties was ship driver. Sandy then entered the Naval Reserves as a Reserve Officer and held three major commands during that time, until he retired with the rank of Captain in 1991.  During his service, he attended the Naval War College and the National War College. 

Mr. William Vaughan, Jr. served honorably onboard an intelligence gathering ship in the Pacific during the Vietnam conflict. Bill completed his Navy tour serving in the Flag Administration Unit for the Commander in Chief of the Atlantic Fleet. Bill proudly served his country from 1969 thru 1972. Bill is an alumnus of Atlantic Christian College, graduating in 1968. Bill was chaplain of Sigma Phi Epsilon Fraternity and received the Alumni Achievement Award in 1998.

Mr. R. Woody Harrison, Jr. served honorably in the United States Navy six years in active duty and 20 years in the Naval Reserves, when he retired in 1990 as a Navy Commander. He was in the fighter squadron VF11 deployed aboard Aircraft Carrier USS Forestall for two 9-month cruises in the Mediterranean from 1967-1969. He then was moved to Commander-Naval Air Force-Pacific in San Diego as an Intelligence Briefing Officer. There, he played a large role in organizing and running Operation Homecoming, welcoming the 591 American Prisoners of War held by the North Vietnamese in 1971-1972. Upon his transition to the Naval Reserves, he was assigned to naval and joint staffs in the Norfolk, V.A. area.

All three of these men are prominent business leaders in the Wilson community as well as long-time supporters of Barton College as members of the Barton Society. Gentlemen, thank you for your tireless service to our great nation, to the Wilson community, and for your support of Barton College.

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