The recipients of Lee University's Charles W. Conn Award are pictured here with Dr. Mark Walker, president, and Dr. Mike Hayes, vice president for student development, following a special chapel service where the awards were presented. Shown (left to right) are Walker, Dr. Bill Estes, Laura Wigdor, Trent Tatum, and Hayes.
During a recent chapel service, the Dr. Charles W. Conn Servant Leadership Award was presented to Lee students Trent Tatum and Laura Wigdor, and faculty member Dr. William "Bill" Estes, dean of Lee's Helen DeVos School of Education.
The Dr. Charles W. Conn Servant Leadership Scholarship, established in 2003, honors President Emeritus Charles W. Conn. He served as Lee's president from 1970 to 1982, and a spirit of servant leadership marked his tenure.
As part of the university's efforts to emphasize the importance of serving others, the award is given annually to rising seniors who have demonstrated outstanding commitment to service during their time at Lee. Students who receive this scholarship give a portion of the proceeds to a charity of their choice.
Tatum is a junior theology major from Lowell, North Carolina. At Lee, he has served as the chaplain of Lee Singers, interned in the Leonard Center, performed with the alternative chapel team, been a resident chaplain for the Bowdle O'Bannon dorm, worked as a Summer Honors resident assistant, and has served as Phi Eta Sigma's service chair for two years, the national honors society for first-year students.
"Trent is a role model of the Christian life and inspires others to live out their faith," said Tatum's nominator.
Wigdor is a junior music education major from Louisville, Tennessee. At Lee, she has been in Evangelic Singers, participated in Honors Choir, and volunteered with Big Pal Little Pal. In the Cleveland community, Wigdor has volunteered with the Boys and Girls Club.
"Laura is the definition of a servant leader," said Wigdor's nominator. "I have watched her at the Boys and Girls Club, and she treats every child with kindness and grace."
Estes has been faculty at Lee since 1998 and serves as distinguished professor of education as well as dean. He served as chair of the Department of Health, Exercise Science and Secondary Education from 2004-2013. In 2008, he was chosen for Lee's Excellence in Teaching Award. For the past 19 years, Estes has coordinated the 65 Roses 5K as a part of Lee's Great Strides efforts. Locally, Estes is also a member of Cleveland's City Council and serves on the boards of the United Way and City Fields. He is a committee member of the Greenway Advisory Board and served on the State Task Force for minority Teacher Recruitment and Retention during the Bredesen administration.
Tatum and Wigdor are the 18th group of students to receive this award, while Estes is the 15th faculty member to be honored.
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