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Nominations are now open for the 2018 Alumnus and Young Alumnus of the Year Awards. Nominations must be completed no later than 5 p.m. on Tuesday, Oct. 16. Nominations submitted after that time will not be considered.

The Alumnus and Young Alumnus of the Year Awards are the highest recognition awards given to graduates by the Coastal Carolina University Office of Alumni Relations. The honorees will be recognized during the Homecoming football game on Saturday, Nov. 3.

Click here to submit your nomination.

For more information, contact the Office of Alumni Relations at 843-349-2586 or

2017 Outstanding Alumni of the Year

Coastal Carolina University announced the 2017 Outstanding Alumni of the Year honorees during its football game on Saturday, Dec. 2 in Brooks Stadium. D. Wyatt Henderson is the Outstanding Alumnus of the Year, and Sadara Shine is the Outstanding Young Alumnus of the Year.

Candidates nominated for the alumni awards are chosen by a steering committee of faculty members. Criteria for the annual awards include loyalty to CCU, record of service and accomplishments, and demonstration of positive attributes.

D. Wyatt Henderson‌Henderson, a resident of Greer, S.C., earned a bachelor’s degree in accounting in 1998. After graduating from Coastal, he worked for Deloitte & Touche in Greenville before opening Henderson Accounting, a full service accounting and financial services firm, in Greer in 2000. Henderson is a certified public accountant, certified in financial forensics, a certified fraud examiner and a certified divorce financial analyst. He is an expert in financial analysis, forensic accounting, tax planning and preparation, business consulting, litigation support, asset division, and management advisory services. Henderson is a member of the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants, S.C. Association of Certified Public Accountants, Association of Certified Fraud Examiners, South Carolina Tax Council, Institute of Divorce Financial Analysts and the Association of Divorce Financial Planners.

Henderson has served on the CCU board of trustees since 2009, including a stint as chairman from 2011-2017. He and his wife, Stacy, have been generous supporters of the University. They have funded spaces in both Brooks Stadium and Springs Brooks Stadium and established the Cecil H. Black Scholarship Fund, named in memory of Henderson’s grandfather. Henderson is a charter member of CCU’s Beta Alpha Psi, an honorary organization for financial information students and professionals. In recognition of his service and ongoing support of CCU, the University recently named its accounting department the D. Wyatt Henderson Department of Accounting.

Sadara Shine

Shine, a resident of Washington, D.C., earned a bachelor’s degree in political science with a minor in global studies in 2014. While at CCU, she was a member of the Dalton and Linda Floyd Family Mentoring Program, which provides an opportunity for students to serve as role models for children (K-8) in area schools. She was also the chapter secretary for Circle K International and helped plan Chauncey’s Challenge, a 5K obstacle race on campus.

Shine is a government relations manager at Joint Aid Management (JAM), a South African-founded registered nonprofit, humanitarian relief and development organization with 30 years of experience in relief and sustainable development. She helps to develop relationships with U.S. government agencies that pertain to JAM’s programs to ensure grant funding and expanded support. In addition, she represents the organization at functions, conducts research related to funding opportunities and provides technical guidance and support to grant and program development. Her background also includes serving as an operations assistant with Lowcountry Orphan Relief in Charleston, S.C., and as a research intern with United Way Ghana and a global programs intern with Vital Voices in Washington, D.C.

2016 Outstanding Alumni of the Year

Coastal Carolina University announced the 2016 Outstanding Alumni of the Year honorees during its homecoming football game on Saturday, Oct. 22, in Brooks Stadium. Gary Gilmore is the Outstanding Alumnus of the Year, and Meghan Laffin received the Outstanding Young Alumnus of the Year Award.

Alumnus of the Year - Gary GilmoreGilmore, a native of Rocky Mount, Va., earned a bachelor’s degree in physical education in 1980. After graduating from Coastal, he played baseball for a short time in the Philadelphia Phillies organization and then became a scout for the Seattle Mariners and Cleveland Indians. In 1990, he was promoted to head baseball coach at the University of South Carolina-Aiken, where he had served the previous four years as an assistant coach. During his six seasons as mentor, he recorded 253 wins and earned a trip to the 1993 NCAA Division II College World Series.

Gilmore was named CCU’s head baseball coach prior to the 1996 season. During his 21 seasons as skipper, he’s tallied an overall record of 847-438 and has led the program to 14 NCAA Division I Regionals, three Super Regionals and the 2016 College World Series. His 1,100 career victory came in the final game of the 2016 College World Series, where the Chanticleers won the national championship.

Laffin, a native of Long Island, N.Y., earned a bachelor’s degree in business management with a minor in journalism in 2014. Captain of the volleyball team, she was named the 2013-14 Presidential Student-Athlete of the Year, and she received the 2014 Ronald D. Lackey Service Award. She was a member of the University Honors Program and the Wall Fellows program, and she was active in WCCU Radio, the Student-Athlete Advisory Committee and the Golden Key International Honor Society.

After interning at CBS News to help fulfill her degree requirements, Laffin was later hired on a full-time basis. She began by learning the fundamentals, shadowing producers and assisting them with major projects. From there, she produced live shots with reporters in the field and the “Eye Opener” segment on Saturday morning. Later she switched to the control room where she now works as an associate producer for “CBS This Morning.”

View past honorees below.
Read more about the Founders Day Celebration »

Past recipients

D. Wyatt Henderson  '98 |  Outstanding Alumnus of the Year
Sadara Shine '14  |  Outstanding Young Alumnus of the Year

Gary Gilmore  '80 |  Outstanding Alumnus of the Year
Megan Laffin '14  |  Outstanding Young Alumnus of the Year

  Brian Forbus '97  |  Distinguished Alumnus of the Year 
  James Marino '13  |  Distinguished Young Alumnus of the Year
  Patrick Sparks '95  |  Distinguished Alumnus of the Year 
  Brooke Donaldson '11  |  Distinguished Young Alumnus of the Year
  Alexander D. Klaus '05  |  Distinguished Alumnus of the Year 
  Amy McAllister-Skinner '12  |  Distinguished Young Alumnus of the Year
  Olin Utterback '98  |  Business Administration
  Amber Campbell '04  |  Science
  Melanie B. Dozier '11  |  Education
  Alexandra Tamburro '10  |  Humanities and Fine Arts
  Dr. Steven Jachec '95  |  Distinguished Alumnus of the Year 
  Alexandra Tamburro '10  |  Young Alumnus of the Year 
  Lisa Rachels '98  |  Business Administration
  Tim Hardee '78  |  Science
  Rob Spino '00  |  Education
  Erin Donovan  |  Humanities and Fine Arts 
  Tami Springs Brooks '80  |  Distinguished Alumnus of the Year 
  Jason Repak '07  |  Young Alumnus of the Year     
  Christopher S. Huggins '90  |  Business Administration
  Robert M. Johnson '98  |  Science
  Ebbie Gore '87 '00  |  Education
  R. Walter Hill IV '00  |  Humanities and Fine Arts
  Delan Stevens '79  |  Distinguished Alumnus of the Year 
  Jason Repak '07  |  Young Alumnus of the Year
  Thomas Loehr ’80  |  Business Administration
  Caryn Self-Sullivan ’97  |  Science
  Melissa McCloud ’95  |  Education
  Robert Shelton ’97  |  Distinguished Alumnus of the Year
  William Marsh '86  |  Business Administration
  Sachin Gupta '91  |  Science
  Forrest Alton '99  |  Education
  Natasha Mabry Hanna '94  |  Humanities and Fine Arts
  Cynthia Galloway '80  |  Distinguished Alumnus of the Year
  Woody Ford '05  |  Business Administration
  Geoffrey Parsons '88  |  Science
  Sherry Johnson '96  |  Education
  Dawn Richardson  '98  |  Humanities and Fine Arts
  Mike Pruitt ’84  |  Distinguished Alumnus of the Year
  Mark Adkins '89  |  Business Administration
  Will Adkins '89  |  Business Administration
  Joanne Patterson '95  |  Science
  Georgia Vaught Anderson '74  |  Education
  Yasemin Kanan Saib '95  |  Humanities and Fine Arts
  Derek Blanton ’79  |  Distinguished Alumnus of the Year
  Mike Pruitt ’84  |  Business Administration
  Christine Shutter ’94  |  Science
  Jody Hyden ’88  |  Humanities and Fine Arts
  Bruce Maggi ’01  |  Education
  Timothy Meacham ’79  |  Distinguished Alumnus of the Year
  D. Wyatt Henderson ’88  |  Business Administration
  William C. “Bill” Eiser ‘82, ‘84  |  Science
  Stephanie Horner Toney ’01  |  Humanities and Fine Arts
  Ashley D. Godwin ’92  |  Education
  John Trueluck ’00  |  Continuing Studies
  The Honorable Alan D. Clemmons ’82  |  Distinguished Alumnus of the Year
  Jay Huggins '88  |  Business Administration
  Tony D. Prince '93  |  Science
  Janice Cannan ’96  |  Humanities and Fine Arts
  Sandy Sarvis Brossard ‘79  |  Education
  Kenneth Charles Canturbury ‘99  |  Continuing Studies
  Scott Harrelson '86  |  Business Administration
  Dr. John Bailey '84  |  Science
  Anita Williams Huggins ‘98  |  Humanities and Fine Arts
  Mark Roach ‘84  |  Education
  Paul Sweeney ‘00  |  Continuing Studies
  Dale Zeglin '84  |  Business Administration
  Kerry Schwanz '93  |  Science
  James Guignard ’97  |  Humanities and Fine Arts
  Johnny Calder ’70, ’89  |  Education
  Tabby Shelton ’99  |  Continuing Studies
  Larry D. Coats, Jr.  |   Business Administration
  Stuart Stevens  |  Science
  Ashley L. Bruton ’96  |  Humanities and Fine Arts
  Debbie Dewitt '80  |  Education
  Warren Gall '86  | Continuing Studies 
Other Past Recipients
William H. Alford ‘77
  Fran B. Gilbert ‘78 
  Ruth S. Kearns ‘68    
  Michael C. Krug ‘79 
  Clark B. Parker ‘77    
  Juli S. Powers ‘79
  William E. Stanton ‘86