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Each year, the College of Visual and Performing Arts honors a select group of alumni for their achievements in artistic performance, research and education. Our Distinguished Alumni Award recipients represent excellence in Art, Dance, Music, and Theatre.

2020-2021 Distinguished Alumni Award Winners

This month, College of Visual and Performing Arts will award its highest honor to five alumni who exemplify excellence in their fields, recognizing them for their achievements in artistry and education.

Watch the ceremony here.


Sheena Rose is a contemporary Caribbean artist who lives and works in Barbados. Rose is a Fulbright Scholar and holds a BFA Honors degree from Barbados Community College, 2008 as well as an MFA from UNC Greensboro, 2016. She has a multi-disciplinary practice. Her oeuvre includes hand-drawn animations, drawings, paintings, performance art, and new media.

Rose has exhibited internationally in the Caribbean, South America, the United States, Canada, Europe, Africa, and Asia. She has been a participant in the Havana Biennial, Venice Biennial, Gwangju Biennial, and Jamaica Biennial. Rose has been the recipient of a number of international artists residencies, and her work has also been included in a number of Art Fairs, Film Festivals, and Auctions.

In 2017 she performed her work “Island and Monster” at the Royal Academy of Arts, London, as well as at MoCADA, NYC. Rose has been featured in the New York Times, Huffington Post, Travel & Leisure Magazine, and Vogue. In 2019 she created a two-story mural at the Inter-American Development Bank Headquarters in Washington, DC. She also created a nine-foot-tall mural for the exhibition “The Other Side of Now: Foresight in Contemporary Caribbean Art” at Miami’s Perez Art Museum.


Sue Stinson, Emerita Professor of Dance, became a full-time faculty member in the Department of Dance at UNC Greensboro in 1979, having been recruited to develop the K-12 licensure program. She subsequently earned her EdD in Curriculum/Cultural Studies from UNC Greensboro in 1984.

Dr. Stinson served as Department Head of Dance from 1993 to 2002 and undergraduate coordinator from 2002 to 2012. During her tenure as Head, she led the Department to its first accreditation by the National Association of Schools of Dance and also initiated the BA in Dance and the MA in Dance Education, the latter delivered through online and summer courses. She served as Interim Dean of the School of Music, Theatre and Dance from July 2012 until her retirement in July 2013.

She has published her scholarly work in multiple journals and book chapters, and has taught and presented her work throughout the United States and in a number of countries in the Americas, Europe, Asia, and the Pacific. Her research focused on both theoretical issues in dance education and how children and adolescents make meaning from their experiences in dance education. In addition, she is the author of two books, Dance for Young Children: Finding the Magic in Movement (1988) and Embodied Curriculum Theory and Research in Arts Education: A Dance Scholar’s Search for Meaning (2016).

An active member of her profession at the state, national, and international levels, Dr. Stinson played a key role in the initial and subsequent development of standards for K-12 dance education. Her international service has included a number of positions for Dance and the Child: International, as Chair, Research Officer, International Conference Co-Chair, and Proceedings Editor. She has also served on international advisory boards for publications in Dance and Arts Education. National awards include National Dance Association Scholar (1994), National Dance Education Organization Lifetime Achievement Award (2012), and Congress on Research in Dance Award for Outstanding Scholarly Research in Dance (2012).

Since her retirement, she has engaged extensively in community-based activities related to social justice and other civic initiatives, creating a meaningful new chapter in her life.


Andy Lankford

Andrew Lankford, Professor of Trombone at James Madison University, holds a BM in Music Education from UNC Greensboro, an MM in Trombone Performance from the University of Kansas, and a DMA in Trombone Performance from UNC Greensboro. His primary teachers include Randy Kohlenberg and Max Bonecutter.

Prior to joining the faculty of James Madison University in 2001, Dr. Lankford held teaching positions at Louisiana Tech University, Armstrong Atlantic State University, and UNC Greensboro. In addition, he has served on the faculties of the Sulzbach-Rosenberg International Music Festival in Germany and the Taller de Música para Trombonistas in San Juan, Puerto Rico. Currently, he is principal trombone with the Waynesboro Symphony, trombonist with the Madison Brass, and a member of Mr. Jefferson’s Bones.

He has performed with numerous ensembles including the North Carolina Symphony, Longview Symphony, Winston-Salem Symphony, Greensboro Symphony, Lynchburg Symphony, Shenandoah Symphony, Brevard Chamber Orchestra, and the Kansas City Boulevard Big Band. From 2001 to 2015, he was the principal and solo trombonist with the Massanutten Brass Band.

In addition, he has performed with notable commercial artists including Wayne Newton, Gladys Knight, the Temptations, Margaret Whiting, and Kevin Mahogany. As a soloist, he has appeared at the American Trombone Workshop, the Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, the Virginia Music Educators Association Conference, and as featured soloist with the JMU Symphony Orchestra, JMU Brass Band, Massanutten Brass Band, JMU Wind Symphony, JMU Jazz Band, JMU Symphonic Band, JMU Concert Band, Armstrong Community Band, UNC Greensboro Symphony Orchestra, and Louisiana Tech Jazz Ensemble.


Fran Page is Professor Emerita from Meredith College in Raleigh, NC. During her thirty-six years there, she served in many capacities, including Chair of the Department of Communication and Performing Arts, Coordinator of Music Education, and Director of Choral Activities. She taught methods courses for music education majors and also K-6 teacher licensure students, advised music education majors, and directed and supervised student teaching. Dr. Page is a Past President of the North Carolina Music Educators Association and Past Chair of the Arts Education Leadership Coalition (AELC). She is past President of Southern Division MENC: The National Association for Music Education and in that capacity served on the National Executive Board of MENC (now NAfME). In July of 2004, she was named “Tar Heel of the Week” by the Raleigh News and Observer and in the spring of 2007, she was designated by the Capital City Girls Choir as an MENC Lowell Mason Fellow. In 2018 she was awarded the Raleigh Medal of Arts.

Dr. Page is the founder and retired conductor of the Capital City Girls Choir, a three-choir community organization for girls from ages nine to eighteen. The choir continues a busy performance schedule both in the United States and abroad. Performance venues have included the Spoleto Festival, Washington National Cathedral, and venues in England, Austria, and British Columbia. In 2017 the advanced choir, Cantabile Singers, performed at the Llangollen International Music Festival.

Born in Winston-Salem, Dr. Page has a BA in music education from Limestone College in Gaffney, South Carolina and the MM in music education and EdD in music from UNC Greensboro. She holds Orff Levels I, II, and III certification. During her career, Dr. Page was recognized for her expertise as a children’s choral specialist. She frequently conducted workshops and festivals and also did considerable work in the area of curriculum integration and arts curriculum planning and assessment. Dr. Page has served on many teacher education program approval teams for the North Carolina Department of Public Instruction.

Currently, Dr. Page and her husband, Troy Page, are enjoying retirement in the North Carolina mountains.


Sue Scarborough is a long-time theatre arts practitioner. She is the founder of the North Carolina Theatre Arts Educators, a statewide organization for and by theatre educators and the NC Young Playwrights Festival, a statewide playwriting program for grades 4 – 12; the Artist in the School Directory for Wake County, a resource connecting artists and schools; Raleigh Creative Costumes, a costume rental and design house; and Teen Co, a county-wide Improv Company.

She taught theatre at Enloe Magnet High School for 25 years. There she directed over a hundred plays, from Really Rosie to The Threepenny Opera to Nicholas Nickleby to Pericles, served as Arts Department Chair, and received numerous awards. Sue worked in the community by serving on many boards including ArtsPlosure, Pinecone, and the Seed Art Share and directing plays for local theatres such as Raleigh Little Theatre and Cary Players.

Her work has also been seen globally in England and Scotland and at the New York Fringe Festival and Spoleto. She is pleased to have studied with Paul Sills, an improv founder; Charna Halprin, Improv Olympic founder; and at the Globe Theatre in London. Her Master’s degree is from UNC Greensboro. She currently offers workshops, classes, and coaching as well as teaching and in-school residencies. Sue is also developing site-specific pieces and directing new and classic works in Raleigh for Seed Art Share.


Previous Recipients

2019

Sharif Bey ’00 MFA Art
Kathleen Kelley ’05 BFA Dance
Marian Wilson Kimber ’83 BA Music
Louisa Muller ’05 MM Music
Ed Simpson ’80 MFA Theatre

2018

Vanessa Cornett ’04 DMA
Joseph Forbes ’76 BFA
Jonathan D. Green ’92 DMA
Tiffany Rhynard ’98 BA Dance
Kyle Webster ’99 BFA Art

2017 

Carla Gannis ’92 BA Art
Hugh Hysell ’88 BFA Acting
David Kish ’02 MM Music Education, ’03 DMA Instrumental Conducting
Connie McKoy ’89 MM Music Education, ’98 PhD Music Education
Doug Risner ’88 BFA Dance, ‘90 MFA Dance, ‘01 PhD Curriculum and Teaching 

2016

Dr. Candace Bailey ’85 MM Piano Performance
Bonnie Becker ’76 BFA Design and Theatre Technology
John Cipolla ’02 DMA Clarinet Performance
Janet Galván ’73 BM Music Education, ’74 MM Music Education, ‘87 PhD
Lee Hall ’55 BFA Painting
Ann Law ’07 MA Dance Education

2015

Barbara L. Geer ‘88 MM Music Education
Dr. Michael Hall ‘00 DMA Music Performance
Susan E. Mickey ‘77 BFA Acting
John Shepard ’71 BM Theory and Composition
Dr. Jan Van Dyke ’89 EdD Curriculum & Educational Foundations and Department of Dance Professor Emerita

2014

Christal Brown ’01 BFA Dance
Dr. Anna Harwell Celenza ’89 BA Music Studies
Chris Chalk ‘01 BFA Acting
Dr. Donald Hamman ‘80 PhD Music Education
Laura Poe ’01 BM Music Education, ’04 MM Performance