Press Release for Wednesday, October 11, 2006

UNF Awards Civic Leaders Presidential Medallion

Contact: Joanna Norris, Assistant Director
Department of Media Relations and Events
(904) 620-2102

The University of North Florida will award four prestigious Presidential Medallions at noon on Tuesday, Oct. 17, during a Founders Day Presidential Medallion luncheon at the University Center on campus. This honor will be given to local civic leaders who have helped guide UNF during its 34 years.

“We are very fortunate to have alumni and friends who have helped the University of North Florida become the region’s premier institution of higher education,” said UNF President John A. Delaney. “Our momentum is growing every day thanks to people who are passionate about UNF.”

Each individual will receive the Presidential Medallion for Outstanding Service, which is the highest form of nonacademic recognition awarded by the University. Honorees include James Cobb, Robert and Pamela Paul and Carol Thompson. Patrick Cusick and Dr. Thaddeus Moseley were recognized posthumously earlier this month during a past Foundation Board breakfast held on campus as part of Founders Month events. W. Radford Lovett II was awarded a medallion in June for his service as UNF’s Foundation Board president.

James Cobb has been one of the University’s staunchest advocates and a generous supporter as both a donor and volunteer for over a decade. He has served on the President’s Advisory Council and is a former UNF Foundation Board president. In 1994, Cobb and his wife, Virginia, made a gift to UNF to establish an endowed scholarship as a tribute to his parents. The Rose and Fred Cobb Scholarship is awarded to outstanding graduates of Lee High School. Cobb, a Lee graduate, is an attorney in the law firm of Peek, Cobb and Edwards, P.A.

Robert and Pamela Paul are longtime supporters and loyal friends of the University. Both are former presidents of the Foundation Board, with Pam achieving special recognition in the history of UNF by being the first female president of the Foundation Board. She was also instrumental in establishing the Ira M. Koger Eminent Scholar Chair in American Music at UNF. Robert Paul chaired the $2.9 million Coggin College of Business building campaign and is a founding member of the Coggin’s Business Advisory Council.

Carol Thompson’s strong leadership skills and her passion for UNF are evidenced throughout the campus. For five years, she dedicated countless volunteer hours to the University in her role as the chair of the UNF Board of Trustees. chair and continues to serve her alma mater as a member of the Board of Trustees. Now, following her term as chair, Thompson continues to serve her alma mater as a member of the Board of Trustees. She is currently a member of the University’s Foundation Board and serves as the Board of Trustees liaison between the trustees and the Foundation, a critical position to the continued success of UNF.

The late Patrick Cusick is remembered as a remarkable individual whose significant contributions are credited with improving the quality of life in Jacksonville and making UNF a stronger university. As a past president of the UNF Foundation Board, his steady leadership and wise counsel proved invaluable as UNF evolved into Northeast Florida’s premiere university. He was chairman of the Duval County Research and Development Authority, which is responsible for the development of the 284-acre First Coast Technology Par, a commerce center adjacent to the UNF campus.

When it comes to playing a major role in the history of UNF’s Foundation Board, few people can top the accomplishments of the late Dr. Thaddeus Moseley. He holds the distinction of having been the first president of the Foundation Board from 1971 to 1973. When UNF opened for classes on St. Johns Bluff Road in 1972, he used a “volunteer alumni” theme for a fund-raising campaign. It involved establishing a program of gift clubs called Honorary Alumni and Honorary Founders. The money raised was used to fund presidential scholarships, set up a student-loan fund and provide funding for work-study programs.

As UNF Foundation Board president, W. Radford Lovett II presided over a period of unparalleled fund-raising growth for the University. This past fiscal year, the Foundation reached an all-time high of $16.2 million in private support, which eclipsed the previous year, also a record at the time, by nearly $4 million. An honorary UNF alumnus, Lovett and his family established the Katharine H. Lovett Scholarship to honor his mother’s memory. This endowed gift provides merit-based scholarships for first-time-in-college students.

The first Medallion recipients were recognized by the University last September. They include Ann and David Hicks, Fred Schultz, the Skinner family—C. Brightman Skinner, A. Chester Skinner Jr. and Mary Virginia Skinner Jones—and the late Gert H.W. Schmidt. The Presidential Medallion is given annually to recognize both alumni and friends who have given themselves to help make UNF an outstanding institution of higher education.

Please contact Joanna Norris, assistant director of Media Relations and Events, to reserve media parking for the awards luncheon.