A Morgantown attorney, husband and wife physicians from Charleston, a nursing professor and a retired student affairs administrator will be honored as”Most Loyals”during 54th annual Mountaineer Week activities at West Virginia University (Nov. 9-17).
The 2001 honorees are: John Patrick (J.P.) Ball, Esq. of Morgantown, Most Loyal Alumni Mountaineer; Drs. John T. (Jack) and June Ritchie Chambers of Charleston, Most Loyal West Virginians; and Jacqueline W. Riley and Gordon R. Thorn, both of Morgantown, Most Loyal Faculty and Staff Mountaineer. The group will be honored during halftime ceremonies of the WVU -Temple football game Nov.17.
The awards are given annually by the WVU Student Foundation Board of Managers, organizers of the Mountaineer Week celebration. The Most Loyal West Virginian and Alumni Mountaineer awards have been presented since 1974, while the Most Loyal Faculty and Staff Mountaineer awards were created in 1994.
- Most Loyal Alumni Mountaineer exemplifies faithfulness to the ideals and goals of the University and exhibits support for WVU activities and operations through leadership and service.
J. P. Ball , this years honoree, is a general law practitioner with Ball and Higgins PLLC with offices in the historic Judge Cox House in Morgantown. He has been a moving force within the Morgantown planned giving community, and was the main facilitator for the largest individual private donation in WVU s history, acting as executor of the Michael and Davis estates.
The two late Morgantown sisters, Gladys Gwendolyn Davis and Vivian Davis Michael, left $18.4 million to the WVU Foundation$16.2 million for the Davis College and $2.2 million for the Colleges of Law, Creative Arts and the new Downtown Library. The facilitation and leadership provided by Ball during the gift process helped provide WVU with financial resources unmatched in West Virginia.
Ball also supports the University in various ways. In 1999, he provided a Hamburg Steinway Grand Piano to the Division of Music in the College of Creative Arts. He and his wife Anita donated the piano in memory of J.P.s mother, M. Patricia Ball Engle, a WVU School of Journalism alumna, who taught music in Morgantown for over 50 years. Additionally, they have made contributions to the WVU Foundation for the benefit of students.
Ball has served for 11 years as the community member of the Universitys Institutional Review Board for the Protection of Human Subjects (IRB). He is currently a member of the visiting committee of the Davis College, and prior to that, served on the College of Business and Economics Visiting Committee. Anita also serves on the College of Creative Arts Visiting Committee. The Balls are charter members of President Hardestys”Blue and Gold Travelers.”
Ball earned a bachelors degree from the College of Business and Economics in 1957 and a law degree from the College of Law in 1963.
J.P. and Anita have two childrenJohn Patrick Ball, Jr. and Whitney Ball.
- Most Loyal West Virginian exemplifies faithfulness to the ideals and goals of the state of West Virginia through business, professional and civic achievement as well as support of WVU .
Drs. Jack and June Chambers were born in West Virginia in 1924Jack in Charleston and June in Ravenswood. Jack graduated from WVU s College of Arts and Sciences in 1943; June graduated in 1947. The couple then received their medical degrees from Case Western Reserve.
Jack and June have long ties to WVU and have provided strong financial support to the institution. They established the John Chambers Family Fund in 1999 to benefit the combined programs of computer science and engineering.
Jack also is a former member of the School of Medicine Visiting Committee. In 1977, he was inducted into the Order of Vandalia.
Before retirement, Jack practiced obstetrics and gynecology at the Charleston Area Medical Center and was a clinical professor. June practiced internal medicine at Shawnee Hills Community Health Center.
The Chambers have three children, Cynthia Gail Chambers Park, Patricia Ann Chambers Anido and John T. Chambers.
- Most Loyal Faculty and Staff Mountaineer exemplifies faithfulness to the ideals and goals of WVU and exhibits support for its activities and operations through leadership and service. This is the first year that two individuals will receive this award.
Jacqueline W. Riley has served WVU for more than 25 years. She is a dedicated teacher and role model in the WVU School of Nursing, teaching and serving as the assistant dean for Student and Alumni Affairs. Her commitment to the school is indicated by her willingness to take on interim educational and administrative duties when vacancies occurred.
Expanding on her lifelong love of teaching and dedication to students, Riley is an effective recruiter for WVU . She can be seen across the state in her blue and gold attire hosting
exhibits at career fairs or counseling prospective students and their parents at WVU Days.
She served as the faculty liaison to the School of Nursing Alumni Association for 12 years, helping to maintain positive relationships with graduates and fostering financial and political support for the school. Her parking space for Mountaineer football games has served as the associations official tailgating spot for years.
Riley was a member of the Health Sciences Alumni Leaders Group from 1997-2000, helping to formulate and implement the first five-year strategic plan for coordinated alumni programming. She continues as an emeritus member of this group, providing advice and guidance.
Gordon R. Thorn has contributed more than 40 years of full-time service to WVU . Though semi-retired as assistant vice president for Student Affairs, he has spent countless hours supporting, motivating and encouraging students through various positions in Housing, Financial Aid, Student Life and Student Affairs.
His involvement includes 30 years as advisor to Mountainthe highest ranking student honorary on campus. Additionally, he has worked to preserve the historical integrity of WVU s Elizabeth Moore Hall.
Thorn has served on numerous university committeesthe Student Affairs Hall of Fame Committee, the University Student Health Service Advisory Board, the University Disciplinary Committee, the Financial Aid Appeals Committee and the Mountainlair Redesign Committee.
Thorns impact on education extends beyond WVU . He is one of the founding members of the West Virginia Association of Student Personnel Administrators (WVASPA), an organization that supports and promotes student affairs and services in West Virginias institutes of higher learning. Since serving as its president in 1967, he has continued his membership and encouraged active leadership among his fellow administrators. In 1996, the WVASPA recognized his contributions by honoring him with the Distinguished Service Award.
Gordon and his wife, Martha, have three children, Sarah, John and Susan.
The awarding of the Most Loyals and the presentation of Mr. and Ms. Mountaineer is a highlight of Mountaineer Week activities. Other events throughout the week will include arts and crafts, music, food and folkloreall designed to celebrate the state and its rich people and heritage.