Top Row L-R: John Gaskins, Frances Reeve, Chuck Blauvelt, Vonnie Colvin. Bottom Row L-R: Chrys Kosarchyn, David Buckalew, Sharon Menegoni, Gerry Sokol
Top Row L-R: John Gaskins, Frances Reeve, Chuck Blauvelt, Vonnie Colvin. Bottom Row L-R: Chrys Kosarchyn, David Buckalew, Sharon Menegoni, Gerry Sokol

Eight retiring Longwood University faculty members were honored March 23 at a campus reception.

The faculty members (with the years they joined the faculty noted after their names) are Dr. Chuck Blauvelt (1988), associate professor of physical education; Dr. David Buckalew (1999), professor of biology; Dr. Allison “Vonnie” Colvin (2004), professor of physical education pedagogy; Dr. John Gaskins (2003), associate professor of marketing; Dr. Chrys Kosarchyn (1987), professor of health education; Sharon Menegoni (1996), associate professor of athletic training; Frances Reeve (1990), professor of school librarianship; and Dr. Gerry Sokol (2003), professor of education.

Blauvelt chaired the Department of Health, Athletic Training, Recreation and Kinesiology for seven years, was associate dean of the College of Education and Human Services for three years and served on the Faculty Senate. He established student teaching programs in Honduras and represented Longwood in other professional activities in Ireland, South Africa and Germany. As the first participant in the Faculty Connections program, he was a K-2 physical education teacher at Prince Edward County Elementary. During his first 17 years at Longwood, he supervised student teachers throughout the state. Before joining the faculty, he was a professor and department chair at the Escuela Superior del Profesorado in Honduras (the national teachers college), where earlier he had taught as a Peace Corps volunteer. Two of his children are Longwood graduates (Claudia Blauvelt ’98 and Charlie Blauvelt ’12).

Buckalew chaired the former Department of Natural Sciences from 2000-03 and codirected, with Katie Register, the Appomattox River Water Quality Monitoring Program for 16 years. His student-centered research efforts focused on projects associated with bacterial assays within the upper Appomattox watershed, which led to dozens of presentations at local, state and national meetings of microbiologists. Working with Clean Virginia Waterways in assessing surface and ground waters, he worked on many small grants to secure more than $75,000 in research funding. Buckalew, an officer with the Virginia Branch of the American Society for Microbiology for the last 12 years, is most proud of the two Longwood’s Most Favorite Professor awards he received. Before coming to Longwood, he served on the biology faculty at Xaxier University in New Orleans for 12 years.

Colvin coordinated the physical and health education teacher education program for all but seven months from 2005-16. She is the lead author of three textbooks and the recipient of the College/University Physical Educator of the Year Award in Virginia (2013) and Kentucky (2002). She also received three Chi commendations. Working with students, she coordinated the painting of large U.S. maps on blacktop at every elementary and primary school in 12 area school divisions in recent years. She taught previously at the University of Kentucky and in the Louisa County schools.

Gaskins chaired the Department of Management and Marketing from 2011-14. He was active in the Richmond Retail Merchants Association, writing a column for the group’s newsletter and participating in panel discussions, and he has made presentations at numerous conferences and to regional chambers of commerce. Before joining the faculty, he was a regional academic director for the business school at the University of Redlands in California. He also served as an Army officer for 12 years, attaining the rank of captain.

Kosarchyn developed Longwood’s health education program and served as director of the Virginia Comprehensive Health Education Training and Resource Center from 1998-2008. Funded by nearly $1 million in annual grants from the Centers for Disease Control, the center provided training and resources on a variety of content areas in health education. She was the keynote speaker at the 1994 conference of the National School Health Association of Taiwan in Taipei City; director of the International Health Council of the American School Health Association from 1992-95; and received the 1992 Virginia College/University Health Educator of the Year Award. She taught at Kent State University, Ohio State University and the Florida Keys Community College prior to joining the Longwood faculty.

Menegoni developed Longwood’s athletic training program, which included building the curriculum, securing initial accreditation and directing two self-study cycles reaffirming its accreditation, and transitioning what originally was a concentration (approved in 1999) to a stand-alone degree, approved by SCHEV in 2008. Longwood honors include the Maude Glenn Raiford Teaching Award. She coordinated the athletic training education program at Western Illinois University before joining the faculty.

Reeve came to the Longwood library as an academic librarian and assistant professor of library science, then served as coordinator of what is now the school librarianship program and head of reader services. She became fulltime in the program in 2003. She has been active in the Virginia Association of School Librarians, having served as president, conference chair, treasurer and editor of its newsletter, the VOICE, and has served on several committees of the American Association of School Librarians. Before joining the faculty, she was a secondary school librarian in Halifax County and an elementary school librarian in Campbell County.

Sokol, who taught in the educational leadership program, came to Longwood after a 31-year career in K-12 education, all with the Jefferson County schools in the Charles Town area of West Virginia. He held a variety of increasingly responsible positions with the Jefferson County schools, starting as a special education teacher, then advancing to coordinator of special education, director of pupil services and finally assistant superintendent.

Blauvelt, Kosarchyn, Menegoni and Reeve have been awarded emeritus/emerita status by the Board of Visitors. Colvin and Menegoni retired in December 2016; the other faculty members are retiring at the end of the current academic year.

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