University of Pikeville

Office of Alumni Relations
147 Sycamore Street
Pikeville, Kentucky 41501
(606) 218-5276


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

Each year during UPIKE Homecoming the university celebrates the accomplishments of individual Alumni for their achievements and commitment to the university.

2021 Alumni Award Recipients:

Pictured left to right – Kandi Justice, Tiffany Craft, Thomas Hereford III
  • Thomas May Hereford III – Distinguished Alumni Award
  • Tiffany Michelle Craft – Gary Thrash Outstanding Ambassador Award
  • Kansas “Kandi” Meredith Justice – Rising Young Alumni Award

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.

2021 Recipient:

Thomas May Hereford III

In 1966, Thomas May Hereford III graduated from Pikeville College where he served as vice president of the student council. He continued his education at Eastern Kentucky University, earning a master’s degree in counseling. Tom retired after 33 years from the Cabinet for Human Resources as regional administrator for Eastern Kentucky. Tom currently serves on the UPIKE Alumni Association Board.


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
2017 – Doug Branham
2018 – Marcy McClanahan Cassady
2019 – Kenneth Stiltner

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.

2021 Recipients – 

Kansas “Kandi” Meredith Justice

Kandi Justice graduated from Pikeville College with a bachelor’s degree in medical technology in 1997 and graduated from the University of Pikeville with an MBA in 2013. She has spent more than 24 years working to improve healthcare in our region. Since 2018, Kandi has served as senior vice president and chief operating officer of Pikeville Medical Center, where she has managed more than $100 million of growth and expansion projects. Some of these monumental projects include outreach clinics, the Leonard Lawson Cancer Center, the PMC Heart and Vascular Institute and the development of the region’s first and only children’s hospital, which will open later this year. Kandi was recently named one of the top women in business in Kentucky by the Lane Report. She and her husband Ray live in South Williamson, Ky., with their daughters, Makena and Meredith.



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

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.

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.

2021 Recipient – 

Tiffany Michelle Craft

Tiffany Michelle Craft is a 2010 graduate of Pikeville College, receiving her Bachelor of Science degree in communication. She has spent the last 11 years working with the City of Whitesburg tourism as well as Letcher County tourism as an events planner and organizer.

Tiffany serves on the UPIKE Alumni Association Board, local advisory board for Whitesburg ARH, the Whitesburg Housing Authority Board, and the board of directors for the Kentucky River Area Development District as well as the transportation committee and Regional Water Management Council.

Tiffany was married to prominent attorney James Wiley Craft, who served as mayor for the City of Whitesburg from 2007 until his death in June 2021. On July 13 Tiffany was unanimously chosen by the Whitesburg City Council to fulfill the remainder of her husband’s term, making her the first female mayor of Whitesburg.

Tiffany and James were married for 10 and a half years and they have one daughter, Sammi Lauren Craft, who is 10 years old.

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

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


Past Recipients of the Volunteer of the Year Award
2016 – Amy Williamson
2017 – Sue Stanley
2019 – Joel Thornbury