November 19, 2019 – The Order of the Long Leaf Pine Society welcomed a new inductee into its most prestigious circle this November. As a retired faculty member and former administrator at Davidson County Community College, Dr. Pat Akers received this award in recognition of her more than 30 years of service to the State of North Carolina.
The Order of the Long Leaf Pine is the highest award for state service granted by the Office of the Governor. It is awarded to individuals who have provided exemplary service to the State of North Carolina and their communities that has gone beyond their call of duty and made a lasting impact.
“I was so honored to be present and welcome guests to our campus during Dr. Akers’s ceremony,” DCCC President Dr. Darrin Hartness said. “She has not only been an asset to DCCC since her beginnings here in 1976, but has left a lasting legacy that impacts so many on this and every community college campus in North Carolina through her founding of the North Carolina Community College Leadership Program.”
During her time at DCCC, Akers served as a physical education instructor, chairperson of the Engineering and Manufacturing Technology division, Director of Special Projects and the interim dean of Instructional and Student Services.
In addition to her time at the college, Aker also initiated the NC Community College Leadership Program (NCCCLP) in 1989. The program is a seven-month experience seeking to develop community college leaders through networking and various learning experiences. As of July 2019, it has seen 30 graduating classes and 1,042 NCCCLP alumni.
“I wanted to make a difference,” Akers said. “I was given so many opportunities for leadership and personal growth during my time at Davidson County Community College. It was like my family. It really is a ripple effect that leaders beget leaders.”
The ceremony featured a welcome from Michael Boone, current director of the NCCCLP; testimony from Justin Nichols, network administrator at Surry Community College; Akers’s history and impact from George Fouts, who led the presidential search for DCCC in 2018; presentation of the award from Burr Sullivan, member of the State Board of Community Colleges; and remarks from Dr. Akers herself. It took place in the Rittling Conference Center of DCCC’s Davidson campus.
Governor Roy Cooper signed the award on July 1 of this year following a nomination from the NCCCLP’s 2019 graduating class.
About Davidson County Community College
Founded in 1963, Davidson County Community College is a fully accredited, multi-campus college where students of all ages and backgrounds pursue academic and career-focused education in order to build successful futures. As one of 58 institutions within the North Carolina Community College System, DCCC offers more than 40 degree and professional certificate programs to students in Davidson and Davie counties, as well as affordable college-credit coursework to students who plan to transfer to 4-year universities. With a mission to serve the changing needs of students competing in a global environment, DCCC is committed to quality education, innovative and equitable learning experiences, training, and support across a wide range of 21st-century career fields. Visit Davidson County Community College at DavidsonCCC.edu.
Davidson County Community College