Marshall alumni club wins award

The Thundering Bison Club of the Mid-Ohio Valley is No. 1 in the world!

Laurie Martin of Vienna, club president, received the exciting news this week that the Thundering Bison Club was selected as Marshall University’s top alumni association group. Marshall has 38 alumni clubs in the United States, along with one in Vietnam and another forming in Beijing, China.

Martin and other local alumni officials will receive a plaque in recognition of the Thundering Bison Club’s achievement during an awards celebration at 6:30 p.m. April 26 in the Memorial Student Center as part of Marshall’s Alumni Weekend.

“We are honored that the Marshall University Alumni Association has deemed us worthy of this award,” Martin said. “This was the first year we submitted an application to be considered for MU Alumni Club of the Year. This award speaks volumes to the dedication of our club officers and members,” she said.

Matt Hayes, executive director of alumni relations at Marshall University, said the award shows the commitment and enthusiasm displayed by the Thundering Bison Club and its passion for the university.

“The Thundering Bison Club has a great network of people who get together to promote Marshall University,” Hayes, a native of New Martinsville, said. “The proceeds (of the club’s efforts) help kids from the Mid-Ohio Valley pursue their educational goals – hopefully at Marshall.”

The Thundering Bison Club’s Scholarship and Vision Campaign fundraising banquet this month in Vienna raised $16,500. Some of the money will help local students attend college with the rest going to Marshall to improve its athletic facilities.

The club sponsors the “Rally in the Alley” for local fans to visit with Marshall coaches and officials outside the North End Tavern and Brewery, hosts tailgate parties and football game watching parties at Marshall, and participates in Marshall Homecoming activities.

Looking at the accomplishments of the Thundering Bison Club, it was difficult for the Marshall award committee not to select the Mid-Ohio Valley group, Hayes said.

Joining Martin as club officers are Jane Graham, vice president; Ed Hofmann, treasurer, and Lois Ingles, secretary.

Tickets for the Alumni Weekend event can be reserved by contacting Nancy Pelphrey at the alumni association, 304-696-3134.


The accolades keep rolling in for Parkersburg native Kim Wilson – the 2014 South Carolina High School Principal of the Year. Wilson, who lives in Mount Pleasant, S.C., will receive Glenville State College’s Alumni Achievement Award on April 26 during Alumni Day. Wilson graduated from Parkersburg High School in 1970 and from Glenville State College in 1974 with a Bachelor of Arts degree in education. Wilson, principal at R.B. Stall High School in North Charleston, S.C., was selected principal of the year by the South Carolina Association of School Administrators. He is a candidate for national principal of the year, with the winner being announced in October. Wilson, accompanied by his wife, Parkersburg native Betsy Welch Wilson, was recently recognized on the floor of the South Carolina House of Representatives at the state Capitol in Columbia. Wilson got a surprise greeting at the Capitol from Brooke Mosteller, the 2013 Miss South Carolina who was a student at Wando High School in Mount Pleasant when Wilson was associate principal there. Kim’s mother, Lucille Wilson, lives in Parkersburg.

Contact Paul LaPann at