Dr. Richard Robinson speaks at April 22 event
(NOTE TO MEDIA: Separate hometown releases will be sent for individuals being inducted.)
SPARTANBURG, S.C. – Wofford College inducted 29 students and graduates into the prestigious Phi Beta Kappa society during a ceremony at 11 a.m. on Thursday, April 22, in Leonard Auditorium in Main Building. Dr. Richard L. Robinson, the Larry Hearn McCalla Professor of Mathematics emeritus, was the featured speaker.
Robinson, a 1961 Wofford graduate, retired from the faculty in 2004 after a distinguished 38-year career. Among other student distinctions, he was elected to Phi Beta Kappa in his senior year and earned an Army commission through ROTC. Inspired by the late John Q. Hill (Class of 1947), his faculty mentor and a Rhodes Scholar, Robinson decided on a career as a college teacher of mathematics. He successfully competed for a Woodrow Wilson Fellowship, a Danforth Fellowship and an NDEA Fellowship and completed his doctoral program at the University of Tennessee in 1964.
After two years on active military duty, Robinson returned to Wofford. He and his wife, Bertice, immediately became popular leaders in the faculty community. A gifted and effective teacher, he frequently gave papers and contributed to scholarly journals on topics related to his academic specialty, numbers theory, but he was equally known for his leadership in workshops and programs for public school mathematics teachers. In the 1980s, Robinson also developed and administered Wofford’s pioneering Summer Program for Academically Talented fifth- through ninth-graders.
An avid carpenter and gardener, he is active in the Spartanburg community and has been a lay leader at Central United Methodist Church.
These students and graduates were inducted on Thursday:
Class of 2009
Linda Lauren Bunch of Glendale, S.C.
Katherine Hester Campbell of Westminster, S.C.
Jason Perry O’Quinn Jr. of Columbia, S.C.
Class of 2010
Leia Ruth Boudet of Columbia, S.C.
Marshall McKown Bridges of Florence, S.C.
Justin Curry Davis of Inman, S.C.
Benjamin Gregory Dunlap of Moore, S.C.
Joseph Edward Fornadel III of Mount Lebanon, Pa.
Brittney Rose Getz of Louisville, Ky.
Lauren Anna Holland of Columbia, S.C.
Leland Covington Hollowell of Spartanburg, S.C.
Emily Elizabeth Johnson of Columbia, S.C.
Alyse Jordan Line of Inman, S.C.
Raina Nicole Luthra of Simpsonville, S.C.
Ashley Lynn Mancill of Spanish Fort, Ala.
Hayes Eugene Modlin of Hickory, N.C.
Chelsea Leigh Morgan of Georgetown, S.C.
Sarah Hannah Newman of Camden, S.C.
Jeremy Barton Peters of Charleston, S.C.
William LeRoy Prosser of Johnsonville, S.C.
Jordan Whitney Rawl of Columbia, S.C.
Danielle Elizabeth Rekers of Spartanburg, S.C.
Richard Anderson Steadman III of Mount Pleasant, S.C.
Edward Austin Webb of Chapel Hill, N.C.
Kirk Andrew Whitehead of Marietta, Ga.
Thomas Michael Witt Jr. of Florence, S.C.
Class of 2011
Amber Danielle Green of Union, S.C.
Tahirali Hatim Motiwala of Spartanburg, S.C.
Mitchell Lee Worley of Easley, S.C.
Phi Beta Kappa was founded at the College of William and Mary in December 1776. Over the years, the society has evolved from a largely fraternal and forensic organization into one existing primarily to recognize and promote scholastic achievement in the arts and sciences. Phi Beta Kappa chapters are located at research universities with a strong commitment to the liberal arts, and at the nation’s most prestigious undergraduate colleges. South Carolina claims four of the 276 chapters – the University of South Carolina (alpha), Wofford (beta), Furman (gamma) and Clemson (delta).