||President David DeCenzo with Distinguished Alumnus of the Year 2009 Robert Shelton
Four alumni of Coastal Carolina University have been named 2009 Outstanding Alumni of the Year. The honors were awarded at a recognition ceremony in the Wall Auditorium on Saturday, Nov. 7 as part of Homecoming.
Robert Shelton, class of 1997, was named the Distinguished Alumnus of the Year 2009. The award is given to a graduate of the University who has made a significant contribution to his or her profession or community. Shelton was also named the 2009 outstanding alumnus for the Thomas W. and Robin W. Edwards College of Humanities and Fine Arts.
Shelton, of Conway, earned a bachelor's degree in political science in 1997. Originally from West Palm Beach, Fla., he was active in campus life while a student, serving with the Student Government Association and the S.C. Student Legislature. He earned a law degree from the University of South Carolina School of Law in 2000. He is chairman of the Coastal Carolina University Alumni Association, having served as president of the organization from 2004 to 2008. He is vice chair of the Tara Hall Home for Boys board of directors; president of the Horry County Foster Parents Association; a member of the Coastal Carolina Sertoma Club; and past chair of the City of Conway Elections Commission. He and his wife Tabby Shelton '99 are also active members of St. Paul's Episcopal Church in Conway.
Thomas Loehr - E. Craig Wall Sr. College of Business Administration
A 1980 business management major, Loehr is executive vice president of Crosspointe, the Rolls-Royce North America manufacturing center in Virginia. A native of Conway, he earned an MBA from Clemson University in 1989. He began his career with Emerson Electric and spent 16 years with Honeywell in senior finance and operations positions. He has also worked for the Rogers Group, a crushed stone/quarry company in Indiana, as managing director and region controller. Loehr joined Rolls-Royce Corporation in Indianapolis in 2000, where he served as vice president of purchasing and vice president of finance and IT before moving into his present position. In 2007, Loehr established a Rolls Royce Scholars program in partnership with Coastal Carolina University. The program offers internships to CCU students and has led to full-time positions with the company.
Melissa McCloud - Spadoni College of Education
A 1995 early childhood education graduate, McCloud is a regional instructional coach with the S.C. Department of Education's Bridges to Early Learning Program. After earning her bachelor's degree at CCU, she worked for five years as an elementary school teacher in Horry County. She has earned two master's degrees, one in elementary education and one in leadership and supervision. McCloud has served as an elementary school principal in Marion County for four years. In her current position with the Bridge program, she is an instructional coach for 4K teachers in Marion, Florence and Dillon counties, working with public schools, head start and private childcare teachers.
Caryn Self-Sullivan - College of Natural and Applied Sciences
A 1997 graduate in marine science, Self-Sullivan currently teaches at Georgia Southern University. Since 1998 she has been leading a research project on the ecology and behavior of manatees and dolphins in Belize. The project, which has gained international renown, has supported many internships for Coastal Carolina University students. She is the founder of Sirenian International, a nonprofit organization of professionals dedicated to the conservation of endangered manatees and dugongs. Self- Sullivan has been committed to the development of educators and researchers in developing countries and has created educational presentations, workshops and field courses in the U.S., Belize, the Dominican Republic and Ghana. She earned a Ph.D. in wildlife and fisheries science from Texas A&M University in 2008.
Nila Hutchinson, retired administrative coordinator in the Office of the President at Coastal Carolina University, was named an Honorary Alumnus of the university in recognition of her 26 years of service to the institution.