BOONE—Three individuals who have distinguished themselves in their careers or through their service to Appalachian State University have been honored by the Appalachian Alumni Association.
Preston B. Powell of Summerfield was named the association’s young alumnus for 2014. Marshall A. Croom of Clemmons received the Outstanding Service Award and L. Oval Jaynes of Blowing Rock was named a distinguished alumnus during a June 7 awards gala held on campus.
Young Alumnus Award
Preston B. Powell, a 2001 graduate, is the 2014 recipient of Appalachian’s Young Alumnus Award. Established in 2004, the award is given to individuals for their exceptional service to the university and accomplishments in their career. Candidates must be under 40 years of age and have completed a program of study at Appalachian no less than one year prior to the date of the award.
Powell is the cofounder of the privately held MOAM Group Inc. with offices in Indonesia, China, Hong Kong and North Carolina.
An overseas study abroad experience while a student at Appalachian helped launch Powell’s international career. While a junior in Appalachian’s Walker College of Business, Powell spent two weeks studying international business and visiting manufacturing facilities and other sites in China and Hong Kong as part of the William R. Holland Fellows for Study in China Program.
That experience helped open the door to employment as a quality assurance associate for Meldisco, a footwear manufacturer in Hong Kong. After positions with two other international companies, Powell co-founded the MOAM Group in 2009 with Adam Scherer, another Appalachian graduate. The firm specializes in designing, manufacturing and financing a range of sporting and consumer goods.
MOAM products can be found in more than 12,000 stores nationwide. Organizations including the U.S. government, Amazon.com and Under Armour have partnered with the company to bring innovative products to their customers. Last spring, MOAM launched Yukon Outfitters, a hunting and outdoors brand.
Powell is an advocate for international experiences. He has participated in the Walker College of Business’ Global Opportunities Conference and on a panel discussion on the international job market. He also has been a leadership donor to the William R. Holland Fellows for Study in China Program, a two-week study abroad program for select students in the Walker College of Business.
He also has provided students opportunities to meet and speak with business people and expatriates in China.
Outstanding Service Award
This year’s Outstanding Service Award was presented to Marshall A. Croom, the chief risk officer for Lowe’s Companies, Inc.
The award recognizes individuals for their exceptional service to the university, such as serving on boards or councils dedicated to the progress of Appalachian, assisting with alumni functions or related university events, promoting Appalachian in the community, providing financial support to the university or contributing time and energy to the general betterment and development of Appalachian.
Croom joined Lowe’s in 1997 after an 11-year career with Ernst & Young in Winston-Salem.
Since graduating from Appalachian in 1986, Croom has shared his time, energy and resources to support the Walker College of Business and its students.
His journey of service began when he returned to campus for accounting student recruiting trips, presentations to classes and Beta Alpha Psi meetings. Croom served on the Accounting Advisory Board from 1994 to 1998 before joining the Walker College of Business Advisory Council in 1998, which he currently chairs.
He helped schedule the 2007 Harlan E. Boyles CEO lecturer and the 2012 Boyles CEO Lecture panel.
He mentors students through the college’s Executive Mentoring Program and has been a panelist for the Martha Guy Institute.
In addition, Croom helped lead a fundraising campaign to endow a professorship in accounting in honor of Chancellor Kenneth E. Peacock and helped secure funding to support scholarships for students through the Dean’s Club.
Croom’s other financial support of the university includes the Solar Homestead project, the university’s entry in the 2011 Solar Decathlon, and the Yosef Club.
Recently, the Walker College of Business dedicated the Marshall A. Croom Student Services Center in recognition of Croom’s financial support to the college, another example of Croom’s continued focus on students and the college. The center houses academic advising and career services available to business students.
Distinguished Alumni Award
L. Oval Jaynes received the 2014 Distinguished Alumnus Award, presented annually to a graduate who has attained extraordinary distinction and success in his or her career and demonstrated exceptional and sustained leadership in the community.
Jaynes’ nearly 50-year career in athletics is the dream of many former student-athletes. A 1962 graduate, of Appalachian, he began his career as a teacher and coach at Myers Park High School in Charlotte and lastly as director of athletics at Jacksonville State University.
Jaynes’ career included assistant coaching positions at UNC, The Citadel, Wake Forest University, the University of South Carolina and the University of Wyoming, and a head coaching position at Gardner-Webb University. He held positions as the director of athletics at Colorado State University, the University of Pittsburgh, University of Idaho and UT-Chattanooga. He also held administrative positions at Auburn University.
He has served on boards or committees of the National Collegiate Athletic Association, American Football Coaches Association, National Association of Collegiate Directors of Athletics, Southeastern Conference, Western Athletic Conference, Big East Conference, Big West Conference, Southern Conference and the Ohio Valley Conference.
Jaynes has provided leadership and guidance to the Pittsburgh Sports Council, Western Pennsylvania U.S. Olympics Committee, Greater Chattanooga Events and Sports Committee and the board of the Raycom Football All-Star Classic. He also served on the Denver Organizing Committee to host the 1990 men’s Final Four.
In addition, he has been a United Way volunteer for more than 30 years, an active member of and fundraiser for the Fellowship of Christian Athletes and a volunteer and host for Special Olympics. Now a resident of Blowing Rock, Jaynes is an active member of Blowing Rock Methodist Church and is involved in the church’s community outreach programs.
He was inducted into the National Association of Collegiate Directors of Athletics Hall of Fame in 2012 and the Burke County Sports Hall of Fame in 2008. He was awarded life membership in the American Football Coaches Association in 2001 and received the Gen. Robert R. Neyland Award for Lifetime Achievement from the All-American Football Foundation in 1999.
In 2013, Jaynes received the Spirit of Giving Award from the executive director and the board of trustees of the American Football Coaches Association in recognition of his service to the association and the American Football Coaches Foundation.