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Poe, Furches and Clarke inducted into Appalachian’s Rhododendron Society

rhodo2009_t.jpgBOONE— Cindy Poe of Denver, Marie Furches of Winston-Salem and Carl Clarke of Kernersville have been inducted into the Reich College of Education’s Rhododendron Society at Appalachian State University.

Poe, Furches and Clarke were honored at an induction breakfast July 25 during the annual Black and Gold Reunion sponsored by Appalachian’s Alumni Association.

Established in 1999 to recognize exemplary service to education and community, the award is the highest honor given by the school’s Reich College of Education.

Marie Furches, left, Carl Clarke and Cindy Poe_t2.jpg
The 2009 inductees into the Reich College of Education’s Rhododendron Society at Appalachian State University are Marie Furches of Winston-Salem, left, Carl Clarke of Kernersville and Cindy Poe of Denver. They were honored for their exemplary service to education and community. The award is the highest honor given by Appalachian’s Reich College of Education. (Photo by University Photographer Marie Freeman)

Poe holds three degrees from Appalachian. She earned a bachelor’s degree in 1976 in elementary education, a master’s degree in early child education in 1978 and an educational specialist degree in administration/supervision in 1982.

A lifelong educator, Poe began teaching in 1976 at Iron Station School in Lincoln County where she taught first, second and third grades. She advanced to administration, serving as principal at Iron Station from 1983-87; Love Memorial Elementary School from 1987-95; Rock Springs Elementary School from 1995-2001 and S. Ray Lowder Elementary School from 2001-05. Six months after retiring in 2005, Poe returned to education to fill interim positions as principal, assistant principal and teacher.

Her career honors include completing the Principal’s Executive Program at the Institute of Government at UNC-Chapel Hill in 1986 and being named Lincoln County Principal of the Year in 1991 and 2001.

Poe currently serves as a member of the Reich College of Education Advancement Board.  She has served on the Appalachian Alumni Council since 1987, including a term as Alumni Council President from 1991-93 during which she served as an honorary member of the university’s Board of Trustees, and on the Chancellor’s Search Committee in 1993.

Her community involvement includes serving on the Carolina Trust Bank Board of Directors and the local Red Cross Board of Directors. She is a member of Denver/Lake Norman Rotary Club and First Presbyterian Church in Lincolnton.

A native of Lincolnton, Poe is married to Ronald H. Poe, a 1976 graduate of Appalachian.

Furches graduated from Appalachian in 1980 with a B.S. in communications.  In 1984, she received an English Certification from Wake Forest University.

Furches teaches 9th and 11th grade English at North Forsyth High School.  In addition to teaching, she is involved in a variety of extracurricular activities, such as participating on the School Improvement Team and Scholarship Committee, co-sponsoring the senior class, overseeing graduation ceremonies, and planning special events throughout the school year.  She has also served as the assistant athletic director and the varsity cheerleading coach.  Within her community, she is an active member of the United Way’s Women’s Leadership Council and has volunteered for Habitat for Humanity.

Furches also serves on numerous committees and boards at Appalachian.  She has served on the Alumni Council since 1990 and was Alumni Council president in 1998, allowing for the opportunity to be an honorary member of Appalachian’s Board of Trustees, the Appalachian State University Foundation Board of Directors and the Yosef Advisory Board.

In 2001, Furches received the Outstanding Service Award from the Appalachian Alumni Association. She served on the Yosef Advisory Board from 1989-2003.  In 1993, she served on the architectural committee that helped design the McKinney Alumni Center.

Marie has two brothers and one sister, and loves spending time with her niece and nephew.

Clarke, a native of Belmont, graduated from Appalachian in 1952 with a bachelor’s degree in English and physical education. While at Appalachian, he played varsity football. Since college, he has been active as a teacher, actor, director, coach, school administer, and in his church and with volunteer work.

He received his master’s degree in 1960 from UNC-Greensboro and in 1977 returned to Appalachian to earn his Ed.S. degree.

Clarke retired from the Winston-Salem Forsyth County Schools in 1990, after 38 years in public education.  In his honor, the school board named a new street for him at Glenn High School and a football field after him at East Forsyth High School.

An avid actor and performer, Carl played the romantic lead of Jack Stuart in the early years of “Horn in the West,” Boone’s outdoor drama. He also performed in Salem, Va., in summer stock at Myrtle Beach, and was a prominent actor in Charlotte and Winston-Salem little theatres.

He directed, in collaboration with the Charlotte Opera Association, the southern premiere of “Amahl and the Night Visitors.”  He also directed the Kernersville Bicentennial production in 1971 with 175 cast members. Clarke is an active member of Sedge Garden United Methodist Church for many years, serving in various leadership positions.

Clarke lives in Kernersville with his wife, the former Delores Stafford, a 1955 Appalachian graduate.

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