University of Pikeville

Office of Alumni Relations
147 Sycamore Street
Pikeville, Kentucky 41501
(606) 218-5268


The UPIKE Alumni Association invites graduates to connect with one another and remain engaged with UPIKE by taking part in monthly events that are informative, interactive and inspirational. For more information on how you can become involved in the Alumni Association, contact the Office of Alumni Relations at or at (606) 218-5276.

Officers of the Alumni Board of Directors

President: Kay Hammond ’68

Vice President: Danny Adams ’71

Secretary: Gayle Justice ’88

Treasurer: Amy Williamson ’10

Phillip Birchfield  ‘94

Heather Birchfield  ‘96

Jimmy R. Blackburn, II  ‘93

Nathan D. Brown ‘05

Tommy Chamberlin ‘ 96

Erin Chamberlin  ‘05

Jordan T. Charles  ‘03

Twilia Charles-Duff  ‘82, ‘87

Eddy Coleman   ‘77

Lisa M. Compton  ‘12

Gene D. Davis  ‘63

Tiffany J. Fannin  ‘09

Mindy L. Fleming  ‘06

Lisa Forsyth  ‘87

Stephanie R. Frazier  ‘93

Timothy A. Hatfield  ‘92

Jesse W. Hawkins  ‘11

Thomas Hereford, III  ‘66

Doug  Hinkle  ‘53

Judith Hinkle  ‘52, ‘62

Tina L. Hurley  ‘99

Lisa Johnson ’89

Ryan D. Jones  ‘11

David  Lester  ‘71

Judy Lester  ‘71

Brenda K. Maynard  ‘89

Tivis Newsom, Jr.  ‘83

Judi C. Patton  ‘60

Katherine S. Petot  ‘75

Betty H. Porter  ‘62

Howard V. Roberts  ‘78

Lois M. Rogers ‘04

Daryle M. Ronning  ‘86

Jesse L. Rudd, II  ‘00

Jean K. Shockey  ‘49, ‘51

Eugene Sisco, III  ‘08

Jessica K. Taylor ‘11

Michael Williamson  ‘54, ‘58

Don Sulivan  ‘50

Melanie Joyce  ‘02, ‘16

Brandi Brown ‘14

Matt Day  ‘03

Mitch Copley  ‘11

Whitney Copley  ‘08

Camilla Damron  ’96

Tiffany Craft  ’10

Whitney Hogg  ’09

David Jewell   ’97

Bryna Jewell  ’02

Tammy Riley  ’92

Ryan Stratton  ’09

Ryan McCoy    ’07

Ronnie Spence  ’01

Duane Porter  ’90

Greg Dempsey  ’01

Jordan Gibson  ’08, ’14 MBA

Justin Hall  ’97

Gabe Penn  ’14,  ’15 MBA

Roger Wagner  ’70

John Biery  ’88

Lakia Bailey  ’12

Kathy Hubbard  ’03,  ’13

Robert L. Chaney  ’96

Conda Little  ’95

Alumni Awards

2022 Alumni Award Recipients:

alumni awards winners posing at homecoming football game
Pictured left to right – Nancy Cade, Howard Roberts, John Biery, Chad Sellers

  • Distinguished Alumni – Dr. Howard V. Roberts
  • Rising Young Alumni – Mr. Chad Sellers
  • Gary Thrash Outstanding Alumni  – Mr. John L. Biery
  • Honorary Alumni – Dr. Nancy Cade
  • Volunteer of the Year – Dr. Robert Royalty

To vote for this years alumni awards please click on the button below:

Award winners through the years

The Distinguished Alumni Award is presented annually to an alumnus/alumna of the University. He/she must have been out of college for at least seven years. Nomination information should include specific activities, awards and promotions that demonstrate 1) professional prominence and 2) contributions made for the betterment of society, both of which bring honor and distinction to the University of Pikeville.

2022 Recipient:

Dr. Howard V. Roberts


Dr. Howard V. Roberts is the founding dean of the Coleman College of Business at the University of Pikeville. Before entering higher education as an accounting professor, his career began in banking. Later he worked in the chemical manufacturing industry and in the energy sector. Dr. Roberts earned a bachelor’s degree from Pikeville College, an MBA from Marshall University and a doctorate from the University of the Cumberlands. Additionally, he completed a fellowship in higher education leadership at Vanderbilt University. Dr. Roberts is a member and past president of the Pikeville Rotary Club, a member of the board and former chair of the Southeast Kentucky Chamber of Commerce, a graduate of Leadership Kentucky (class of 2013), and an advisory board member for the Tug Valley ARH Hospital. Dr. Roberts is currently serving as the chairman of the Board for Big Sandy Community and Technical College. He served as a three-term board member and chair of the board for the Kentucky Humanities Council and is a member of the First Christian Church of Pikeville.



Past Recipients of the Distinguished Alumni Award
1967 – William C. Hambley
1971 – Lillie Chaffin
1972 – Dr. Raymond Wells, Inez
1973 – John Waddell
1974 – Rediford Damron
1975 – Joe Sharpe
1977 – Charles B. Chrisman
1982 – Jewell Cline, Perry Cline
1983 – Walter P. Walters, Sr.
1984 – Carl Hatcher
1985 – Goldie Benedict
1986 – Jonathan Hiers
1987 – Franklin Day, Alice Kinder
1988 – John Paul Riddle, William C. Hambley
1989 – Georgia Muncy, Harold Edmonds, Ample Calhoun
1990 – Walter May, Lucille Saad Smith, Philip Vinciguerra (posthumously)
1991 – Charles E. Spears
1992 – John B. DuPuy
1993 – Otta Barton
1994 – Terry Dotson, Chester Goble, Irene Goble
1995 – William J. Baird, III
1996 – Jean Hale
1997 – Charles Robert Johnson, William Sullivan
1998 – Billie Jean Osborne
1999 – Doug Hinkle
2000 – Ron Terry, Frank Welch
2001 – Lois Esham, Benny Ray Bailey
2002 – Linda Scott-DeRosier
2003 – Willie Smith, Ruth Wheeler
2004 – Donnie Jones, Reed Anderson
2005 – Dr. Chauncey Rupe, Imogene June Johnson
2006 – Dr. Robert B. Sparks
2007 – Rhoda Jane Claytor, Jean Shockey
2008 – Roger Wagner
2009 – Gene Davis
2010 – Jed Weinberg
2011 Spring – Dr. Orville M. Clark Jr., Justice Will T. Scott
2011 Fall – Kitty Baird, Judith Hinkle
2012 – Wayne T. Rutherford
2013 – Della Dotson Griffey, David Lester
2014 – Dr. Raynor Mullins
2015 – Gene D. Davis, Judi Patton
2016 – Donnie Akers, Hubert Keen
2017 – Doug Branham
2018 – Marcy McClanahan Cassady
2019 – Kenneth Stiltner
2021- Thomas May Hereford III


The Rising Young Alumni Award is presented annually to an alumnus/alumna who is 40-years-old or younger. Basis for selection includes 1) career advancement, 2) service to others, 3) loyalty and commitment to the University, 4) strong personal character, and 5) proven leadership in his or her profession.

2022 Recipients – 

Mr. Chad Sellers

Chad Sellers, a native of Paintsville, Kentucky, is a 2001 graduate of Pikeville College. He earned his Bachelor of Business Administration with an accounting emphasis. Sellers was part of the UPIKE tennis team from 1998 to 2001, where he was a two time all-conference and national tournament participant.Currently a district sales manager with Nevro, Sellers has been in the medical device industry for 15 years, having also worked for several Fortune 500 companies.He is a primary investor in RD1 Bourbon, along with current University of Kentucky football coach Mark Stoops. Sellers, along with his wife Brandei, are co-owners of Sterling Crate Home. They reside in Nicholasville, Kentucky, with their three children, Gage, Sterling, and Stella.


Past Recipients of the Rising Young Alumni Award

2011 Spring – Melanie Fields Horton, Larry Forester
2011 Fall – Rosemary Gilliam Holbrook, Brad Hall, Jessie Rudd II
2012 – Anna Ignatenko Garcia, David Short
2013 – Brandt Johnson, D.O.
2014 – Nick Jamerson
2015 – Jamey Hager, D.O., Robbie Royalty, M.D.
2016 – Justin Hall
2017 – Kyle Sineath
2018 – Charity Burke Walters
2019 – Drs. Jason and Stacy Hunt
2021 – Kansas “Kandi” Meredith Justice


The Honorary Alumni Award is presented annually only if there is clearly a deserving and available candidate; and is normally limited to one recipient each year. Individual(s) must be a non-alumnus/alumna of the community-at-large. Nomination: Cite specific examples of 1) loyalty, 2) interest, and 3) service in the spirit of the University that are above and beyond the normal responsibilities of the individual. Honorary alumni have all the rights and privileges of traditional alumni of the University and become honorary members of the class graduating in the spring of the academic year in which the award is given.

2022 Recipient:

Dr. Nancy Cade

Dr. Nancy Cade is the Davenport Distinguished Professor of History and Political Science at UPIKE. She holds a Ph.D. in Social Science from Ball State University. Soon after completing her degrees, she joined the faculty of Pikeville College in the fall of 1986. For the past 36 years, Dr. Cade has been an actively-engaged faculty member in support of the university’s mission. Over the years, in addition to her teaching duties as a faculty member, she has been involved with various student activities and organizations including serving as sponsor of Phi Alpha Theta, the history club, and the social sciences club. Over the years, she has served on just about every committee the faculty has and often was elected chair of those committees. She served as chair of the social science division for 12 years and worked as the pre-law advisor and campus coordinator for various scholarships and internships. In 1988 she helped found the academic team and served as the coach for eight years. More recently, she has focused her passion and energy on supporting students participating in The Washington Center Seminars and Internships. Since 2004, Dr. Cade has served as a faculty leader for 27 of the seminars and sponsored more than 125 UPIKE students for the Seminars in Washington, D.C. Teaching, learning, and traveling with UPIKE students has been Dr. Cade’s professional passion.

Dr. Cade is married to UPIKE Professor Emeritus Dr. John Cade and they have four cats and one dog.


Past Recipients of the Honorary Alumni Award

1980 – Creg Damron, Ed Elder, Bob Tarbeck
1981 – Mary Evelyn Rogers
1982 – Dr. Lee Scott, Ruth Scott
1983 – Paul Patton
1984 – Wilfred S. Martin
1985 – Ruth Chrisman
1986 – Alma Culton, Maurice Bailey
1987 – Vivian Day, Jim Andy Caudill
1988 – C.V. Snapp
1989 – Eddie Grigsby, Leon Huffman
1990 – Jackie Owens
1991 – Terry Fitzer
1992 – Lt. Gov. Paul E. Patton
1993 – Ed Love
1994 – Burlin Coleman
1995 – Djien & Leonor So
1996 – Paul Gearheart
1997 – William H. Owens
1998 – Father Ralph Beiting
1999 – Chad Perry
2002 – Dale and Martha McNeely
2003 – Karen Smith
2004 – Glenn Brown
2005 – Dr. Rakesh and Dr. Seema Sachdeva
2006 – Johnnie LeMaster
2007 – John Strosnider, JoAnn Strosnider
2008 – Margaret Arnett, Dr. Wallace Campbell, Jane Campbell
2009 – NA
2010 – Danny VanHoose
2011 Spring – Bruce Walters II, Kelly Wells
2011 Fall – Frank Justice, Mattie Justice
2012 – Leslie Combs
2013 – Wayne Martin
2014 – Donovan Blackburn and the Pikeville City Commission
2015 – Andrew Joyce, Rusty Justice
2016 – Boyd Buser
2017 – Kelly Wells
2018 – Tim Collins
2019 – Perry Allen



The Gary Thrash Outstanding Ambassador Award is presented annually in named recognition of alumnus and longtime Alumni Association Board of Directors member Gary Thrash, for his commitment and dedication to the University and its students. The award is presented to those whose service to the University and the alumni association exemplifies Thrash’s dedication to the mission of the University of Pikeville.

2022 Recipient – 

Mr. John L. Biery

John Biery, a native of Louisville, Kentucky, is a 1988 graduate of Pikeville College where he played basketball and received a Bachelor of Business Administration degree. He has been employed by the college for more 30 years in many capacities including in admissions, student services, and athletics where he currently serves as the cross-country coach. He has served two terms as president of the Alumni Association Board, has twice been inducted into the UPIKE Hall of Fame, and was twice named Conference Coach of the Year for Cross Country. He was also part of the coaching staff of the NAIA Division I Men’s Basketball National Championship team. UPIKE Athletics recently created an annual “John Biery Service Award” in his honor due to his many years of service to the university. John, a father of two, resides with his wife Melissa, in Salyersville and is proud to be called Pop Pop by three wonderful grandchildren, Caroline, Kate, and Teddy.

Past Recipients of the Gary Thrash Outstanding Ambassador Award
2011 Spring – Gary Thrash
2011 Fall – Frank Welch
2012 – Kay Hammond
2013 – Bennie Bartley
2014 – Gene Lovel
2015 – Betty Porter
2016 – Tommy Chamberlin
2017 – Kathi Belcher Fletcher
2019 – Danny C. Adams
2021 – Tiffany Michelle Craft

The Volunteer of the Year award is presented in recognition of servant leadership, outstanding volunteerism and selfless commitment to the University of Pikeville.

2022 Recipient –

Dr. Robert Royalty

Dr. Robby Royalty graduated from Pikeville College in 2000 with a Bachelor of Science in biology and chemistry. In 2005 he graduated from the University of Kentucky College of Medicine. He completed an orthopedic residency at the University of Kentucky as well as an American Sports Medicine Institute Fellowship. He has been employed at Highlands/Appalachian Regional Hospital since 2012. He and his wife Melody Sturgill Royalty both played basketball for Pikeville College. They have three children: Gracie, Avery, and Jesse.


Past Recipients of the Volunteer of the Year Award

2016 – Amy Williamson
2017 – Sue Stanley
2019 – Joel Thornbury