Coker College Honors Students that Serve, Lead, and Set a Positive Example

Wednesday, May 2nd, 2018

On April 30, several Coker College students were recognized at the annual Excellence in Leadership Awards, where students from each class are honored for their outstanding contributions to life at Coker. “It is evident that true leaders serve, and true servants lead,” said Darlene Small, Assistant Dean and Director of the Center for Diversity, Interfaith, and Inclusion Education.

In 2014, two awards were added to recognize students for their dedication to and representation of the six tenets of the Coker College student covenant––integrity, respect, scholarship, sustainability, service, and contribution––the Service Trailblazer Award and the Student Government Association Student Covenant Award.

This year’s Service Trailblazer Award was presented to Tiffany Taylor (‘20). The award recognizes a Coker student who embodies the heart of a servant and leads others by their example, and has made a significant effort to contribute to the Coker and/or Hartsville community by uniquely addressing a problem or improving a situation. Tiffany wrote in a statement, “My motivation to give back is a big impact on why I love to volunteer. Having this motivation helps me to want to make a difference in the world.  There are no ties to anything except for me wanting to do the right thing.”

This year’s Student Covenant Award was presented to Sydney Shull (‘18).  The award recognizes a student that shapes and directs student actions in a positive and influential manner.  The recipient of the Student Covenant Award is someone who exemplifies all aspects of the Student Covenant in his or her personal life. Sydney is described by her peers as “passionate, motivated, and loving.”

Rebekah Chapman was a student at Coker College from 1984 until her untimely death in an automobile accident in April of 1986. She was deeply committed to Coker College, and she represented the very best qualities of a student leader.  Given since 1987, the purpose of the Rebekah Chapman Memorial Award  is to perpetuate the memory of Rebekah through annual recognition of a Coker College student who embodies Rebekah’s Coker spirit and has positively impacted the spirit of the student body. 

Rebekah’s sister, Sarah Chapman, graduated from Coker in 1993, and was also very active in the life of the college. The award is given both in memory of Rebekah and in honor of Sarah. This year’s winner is Autumn Walters (‘18).
Since 1998, the James D. Daniels Student Leader of the Year award is given annually to the outstanding student leader, who through their involvement and leadership has made the greatest contribution to the students and general campus community of Coker College.  This award is given in honor of Dr. James D. Daniels, the 14th President of Coker College (1981-2002). His desire to build and enhance Coker College’s student leadership program was ever-present, and his support, love and respect for the students who chose to accept the challenge of leadership will never be forgotten. This year’s winner is  Temaris Dixon (‘19).

Excellence in Leadership awards:

Freshmen winners:

Mahari Greene

Christopher Nowlin

Sophomore winners:

Abby Baroody

McKenzie Hite

Junior winners:

Temaris Dixon

Destany Gause

Senior winners:

Marie Rothrock

Sydney Shull

Additional awards presented at the event include:

-Student Organization Program of the Year: Chinese New Year

-Student Organization of the Year: Student-Athlete Advisory Committee
-Student Organization Leader of the Year: Micah Hancock

-Commissioner of the Year: Kelli Smith

-Resident Assistant of the Year: Autumn Walters

-Emerging Leaders Recognition:

David Benish

Jacob Cole

Deanna Faile

Kirsten Faulk

Zuriel Haire

Kiisha Hilliard

Annie Hinson

Kelli Hurt

Madison King

Mary Kooper

Dre Litsey

Serena Madden

Giancarlo Martinez

Christopher Nowlin

Caitlin Smith

Kelli Smith

-Campus Activities Board (CAB) Director of the Year: McKenzie Hite
“I am so proud of the Coker pride you all exhibit every day, and the difference you’ve chosen to make as student leaders,” said Caroline Carter, Director of Student Activities and Leadership. “On behalf of our entire community, I thank each of you for giving of yourself, for embodying the Coker spirit, and for sharing your gift of leadership with our community.”
For more information about the Excellence in Leadership awards, please contact Caroline at