Valgene Dunham, dean of Coastal Carolina University's College
Natural and Applied Sciences, has been named 2000 Conservation Educator
of the Year by the Horry Soil and Water Conservation District.
The award is given annually to an educator dedicated to improving
educational instruction and public awareness regarding conservation
issues, according to Sam Ward, conservation specialist for the South
Carolina Department of Natural Resources. "As chairman of the board of
directors of the Playcard Environmental Education Center, Dr. Dunham
has been instrumental in expanding student research opportunities at
the center," said Ward. "He has also played an important role in
transferring the center's management to the Horry County School
Dunham joined the Coastal faculty in 1995. He earned a master's
degree in general science in 1965 and a Ph.D. in botany in 1969, both
from Syracuse University in Syracuse, N.Y. He also conducted post-
doctoral research from 1969 to 1973 at Purdue University. Prior to
joining Coastal, Dunham was a professor of biology and head of the
Department of Biology at Western Kentucky University in Bowling Green.
He is vice president of the South Carolina Academy of Science, a state-
wide interdisciplinary science organization designed to stimulate the
creative abilities of science students and provide opportunities which
promote the development of their talents. Coastal recently hosted the
Academy of Science's Pee Dee region annual workshop, which was attended
by more than 250 fourth- through eighth-grade students.