CANTON, NY (05/26/2017) SUNY Canton will welcome several alumni, friends and former leaders into the college's Hall of Fame during a ceremony at 5:30 p.m. Friday, June 2 in the Richard W. Miller Campus Center.
The Hall of Fame was created in 2011 to celebrate the past, present and future of the college by recognizing those who have made significant contributions to their field, their communities and to the storied history of SUNY Canton. The 2017 inductees are:
Preston C. Carlisle is the founding attorney of The Carlisle Law Firm, P.C., in Ogdensburg. He has generously supported scholarships and athletics at SUNY Canton for many years, as well as many other organizations in the North Country. He has served on the Canton College Foundation Board.
Edward N. Coombs, class of 1986, has held senior financial positions with a number of companies, and as a member and officer of the Canton College Foundation Board, has helped the organization maintain financial stability. He and his wife, Christine (Howard) Coombs, class of 1985, established the Coombs-Muscarella Endowed Scholarship in 2013 to benefit a student active in extracurricular activities and with prominent leadership skills.
SUNY Canton President Emeritus Joseph L. and Dine Kennedy brought transformative change to SUNY Canton for two decades during Kennedy's presidency. Under his innovative leadership, enrollment doubled and he added four-year programs to the college's strong selection of two-year and certificate offerings. Mrs. Kennedy is a dedicated community volunteer who has worked with a number of organizations in the North Country. They both remain connected to SUNY Canton and the Canton College Foundation through their membership in the Payson-Martin Society and scholarship support.
Richard F. Layo, class of 1976, is a successful businessman who played hockey for SUNY Canton from 1974 to 1976. As captain, he led the team to claim their third and fourth consecutive national championship titles. Thanks to his generosity, SUNY Canton erected a statue of Coach Terry Martin in 2013, which is located at the Roos House Convocation, Athletic and Recreation Center.
David R. Nichols, class of 1963, is a world-renowned guitar maker who has crafted instruments for famous musicians such as Johnny Cash, B.B. King and ZZ Top. He gives back to the community by generously teaching his craft out of his shop in Malone, which has become a mecca for visitors from all over the world.
The O'Neill Family/A.W. Collins, Corporation have been supporters of SUNY Canton for more than 30 years. A.W. Collins is an amusement and vending company serving all of St. Lawrence County. The O'Neill family were lead donors for the college's athletic turf field lighting and contribute their time and assistance to Canton youth sports, among other community projects.
Daniel J. Sweeney, class of 1975, worked in many capacities at SUNY Canton during his career, including vice president of student affairs and dean of students. In all of his roles, he was a mentor to young adults. A longtime advisor to the Delta Kappa Sigma Fraternity, two alumni created a scholarship in his name: The Daniel J. Sweeney '75 Delta Kappa Sigma Fraternity Leadership Endowment.
Rosella Todd Valentine, class of 1968, worked for 31 years as an Office Technology Teacher for BOCES Northwest Technical Education Center in Ogdensburg and also served as the state's first Teacher Ambassador for occupational education. A dedicated volunteer for many organizations, she joined the Canton College Foundation board in 1977, is a past president of the Alumni Association and is currently a member of the Payson-Martin Society.
The induction ceremony is just one of the special events scheduled for Alumni Weekend. The college will also host academic tours, special fraternity gatherings, a hiking excursion, a half-century luncheon for the class of 1967 and a "CantonFest" barbeque. For more information or to register, visit www.canton.edu/alumni/reunion.html.
About SUNY Canton
SUNY Canton is Northern New York's premier college for career-driven bachelor's degrees, associate degrees and professional certificate programs. The college delivers quality hands-on programs in engineering technology, health, management and public service and recently received number one rankings in library resources, library services and tutoring services in the SUNY Student Opinion Survey. The college's faculty members are noted for their professional real-world experience in addition to outstanding academic credentials. SUNY Canton OnLine offers hundreds of flexible and convenient courses as well as 13 exclusively online degrees. The college's 15 athletic teams compete at the NCAA Division III level and are conference members of the newly formed American Collegiate Athletic Association.