BC Board Considers New Capital Campaign
The Bluefield College Board of Trustees recently gathered for its annual spring meetings, and during the two-day session the group discussed the feasibility of a new capital campaign, the introduction of a new cybersecurity program, and elected alumnus Gordon Grimes chair of the Board.

BC Board Considers New Capital Campaign

By Chris Shoemaker | July 12, 2017 | RSS

The Bluefield College Board of Trustees recently gathered for its annual spring meetings, and during the two-day session the group discussed the feasibility of a new capital campaign, the introduction of a new cybersecurity program, and the election of new officers and members for the group, among other actions.

Jason McNeal, a capital campaign consultant with Gosner Gerber Consulting, shared a report on the feasibility of a campaign celebrating BC’s centennial anniversary. The college is hoping to begin a fundraising campaign over a five-year period to celebrate its 100-year anniversary in 2022. If approved, the campaign would fund facility improvements, including a new Health and Wellness Center and a third-floor addition to the Science Center; endowed student scholarships; academic program improvements; and faculty enrichment, among other initiatives.

The trustees also heard a presentation on cybersecurity from Dr. Jeff Teo, professor of cybersecurity, who will be launching a new BC cybersecurity academic program this fall. Dr. Teo spoke about the benefits of offering a cybersecurity program as a result of the demand for trained cybersecurity professionals. In fact, more than 40,000 American cybersecurity jobs went unfilled last year, Dr. Teo said, in light of the shortage of cybersecurity specialists. He also spoke of his goal to make Bluefield College a national center of academic excellence for cyber defense. The BC cybersecurity program will be Introduced first as a concentration under the business administration degree and later added as a major of its own.

During the spring session, the Board elected Gordon Grimes as chair of the Board, replacing current Board chair Kenneth Russell, whose tenure as a trustee will end in October. Russell, an attorney from Abingdon, Virginia, has served as a trustee since 2010, becoming chair of the Board in the spring of 2016. He is the chief executive officer of Cottages Group, an organization of real estate developers and contractors. Grimes, a 1994 BC graduate, is a financial advisor and senior vice president for SunTrust Private Wealth Management in Raleigh, North Carolina. He joined the BC Board in 2012.

In related business, the Board approved the renewal of terms for trustees Michael Harris and Chris Lawson and elected new trustee David Kirk. Dr. Harris, a 1997 BC alumnus, is a pharmacy manager with Walmart and a clinical pharmacist at Clinch Valley Medical Center. He is beginning his third four-year term as a trustee. Dr. Lawson, a 2001 BC grad, is the executive pastor of Reynolda Church in Winston-Salem, North Carolina. He became a trustee in 2013. Kirk, a 1990 BC alumnus, is the funeral director of Bailey-Kirk Funeral Home in Princeton, West Virginia. He is also an active member of First Baptist Church of Princeton, Princeton Health Care Center, Mercer County Opportunity Industries, the Princeton-Mercer County Chamber of Commerce, and the Rotary Club of Princeton.

Two Bluefield College professors were granted promotions by the Board. Charles Reese was promoted from associate professor of theatre to full professor of theatre, and Dr. Irene Rieger was promoted from assistant professor of English to associate professor of English.

In other business, the Board appointed Dr. Marshall Flowers, vice president for academic affairs, acting president during President David Olive’s sabbatical in summer 2017. The group also approved a preliminary budget for 2017-’18, which included new funds for cyber security and psychology faculty; wrestling, men’s volleyball and women’s lacrosse coaches; an athletic trainer; added employee health insurance benefits; and campus upgrades In the Art Department, Biology Department, Music Department, Science Center, Harman Chapel Auditorium, Visual Arts Center, Academic Center for Excellence, and residence halls.

Dr. Olive also provided an institutional update for the Board. Student Government Association representative Jacob Webster shared a report on behalf of SGA, and Dr. Tracey Stout, associate professor and chair of the Department of Christian Studies, offered a report on behalf of the faculty.

Media Contact

Chris Shoemaker, Director of Marketing and Public Relations

276.326.4212