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WBC Announces 2017 Graduates


U.S. Senator John Boozman delivers the 2017
commencement address.
Williams Baptist College awarded degrees to 102 graduates during its 2017 commencement exercises Saturday, May 13.  The graduates represented 31 Arkansas counties, 10 states and three nations.

A crowd of over 1,000 filled WBC’s Southerland-Mabee Center for the ceremony.  The commencement address was delivered by U.S. Senator John Boozman, and graduating senior Alexus Clardy of Conway, Ark., spoke on behalf of the class of 2017.

Professor Jerry Gibbens was honored for completing 50 years of service to WBC.  Gibbens, professor of English and chair of the division of arts and sciences, was presented a medallion in honor of the occasion, and Williams President Dr. Tom Jones announced that the commons area of WBC’s Maddox Center is to be named Gibbens Atrium starting this fall.

Dalton Freshour of Pomona, Mo., was recognized as the graduate with  highest honors, having earned a perfect 4.0 GPA.

Honor graduates were recognized as being cum laude (3.5-3.69 cumulative grade point average), magna cum laude (3.7-3.84 GPA) or summa cum laude (3.85-4.0 GPA).

Williams is a four-year, liberal arts college in Walnut Ridge.  WBC graduates from Arkansas, listed by county, included:

 Prof. Jerry Gibbens is honored for his 50 years of
 service to the college. 

Baxter CountyMountain Home: Taylor R. Williams (cum laude).

Benton County Rogers: Javier Piedra, Diego Santillan.

Boone CountyHarrison: Mathew Bell, Abby Webb.

Clay CountyCorning: Kirby Curtis (cum laude).  Knobel: Holly Stormes (magna cum laude).  Piggott: Kelsey McKenney (Coe Scholar, magna cum laude), Mallory Wright (summa cum laude).  Rector: Margie Brown (cum laude), Daniel White.

Cleburne CountyQuitman: Alexis Ingram (summa cum laude).

Columbia CountyMagnolia: Brianna Warner (Coe Scholar, summa cum laude).

Craighead CountyBono: Adam Lowry (cum laude).  Brookland: Spencer Elder. Jonesboro: Ethan Abbott, Cheyenne Ballow, Steven Ballow, Gala Dennis (cum laude), Amanda Gifford, Kitiara Herring, Emily Medley.  Monette: Elizabeth Boling.

Crittenden CountyEarle: Josh Blansett (magna cum laude).

Cross CountyWynne: Chelsea Clarkson (Coe Scholar, summa cum laude).

Faulkner CountyConway: Alexus Clardy (magna cum laude).

Fulton County Mammoth Spring: Deniece Byers.

Garland CountyHot Springs: Marleigh Norris.  Pearcy: Shayna Beck.

Grant CountySheridan: Garrett Williams.

Greene County Marmaduke: Morgan Hawley.  Paragould: Jessica Baugh, Ryan Cupp, Shana Cupp, Sara Gramling, Kyle Roden (magna cum laude), Noah Stoddard, Blake Tyler, Nathaniel Wogoman.

Hot Spring CountyMalvern: Kayla Songer.

Independence CountyBatesville: Hannah Medley.

Jackson CountyNewport: E. J. Rucker.

Jefferson CountyWhite Hall: Alexandrea Files.

Lawrence CountyBlack Rock: Stacy Weldon.  Clover Bend: Emily Freer.  Hoxie: Raven Chronister, Seth Hart.  Imboden: Maigen Rogers, Demi Stephens (magna cum laude).  Portia: Brandi Bookout (Coe Scholar, cum laude).  Powhatan: Whitney M. Meeks.  Smithville: Keith McAnally (summa cum laude). Walnut Ridge: Jessie Berry, Holly Looney, Brittney Pinkston (cum laude), Deana Quarry (cum laude).

Dalton Freshour is congratulated as the
graduate with the highest honors of a 
perfect 4.0 GPA.
Lonoke CountyCabot: Andrew Billingsley.

Mississippi CountyOsceola: Ron Robinson.

Poinsett CountyWaldenburg: Tyler Ball.

Pulaski CountyLittle Rock: Brandon Cross.

Randolph CountyMaynard: Taylor Cox-Tuer, James Ewing.  Pocahontas: Krystal Borreson, Brittany Grooms, Samantha Poe (cum laude), Spencer Thielemier, Angela Vitale, Olivia Wogoman.

Saline County Benton: Colton Babbitt, Tessa Babbitt (Coe Scholar, magna cum laude).  Bryant: Brooke Howell.

Sebastian CountyGreenwood: Erika Campbell.

Sharp CountyCave City: Vonda Slagley.

St. Francis CountyForrest City: Samantha Kearns (magna cum laude).

Union CountyJunction City: Dylan Disotell.

Van Buren CountyClinton: Lanie Walsh (cum laude).

Washington CountyFarmington: Ethan Risley (cum laude).  West Fork: Gabby Dixon (cum laude).

WBC graduates from other states, listed by city, included:

 Alexus Clardy delivers the student


Jacksonville Beach – Nick Scott.


Conyers – Rylee Rogers.


Chicago – Stanley Malcom.

North Aurora – Jonathan Drendel.


Fort Madison – Eric Kent.


Benton – J.P. Zeigler.

Independence – Hudson Ross.

Olive Branch – Dora Lwamba (cum laude).

Southaven – Tucker Smith.

Wiggins – Ashton Roby (magna cum laude).

 Members of the 2017 graduating class
 (l to r): Dora Lwamba, Emily Medley, Daniel
 White, Kelsey McKenney, and Ashton Roby.


Bourbon – Dalton Nilges.

Columbia – Andrea Drake.

Couch – Cassie Roberts.

Fisk – Taylor Galloway (magna cum laude).

Kennett – Jack Walls.

Pomona – Dalton Freshour (highest honors, summa cum laude).

West Plains – Taylor Barton (summa cum laude).


Pavia – Tyler Dibert.


Brentwood – Ryan Shelton.

Memphis – Jacob Hames.


Tarkington – Rachel O’Bryan.

Weatherford – Jordan Harvey (cum laude).

WBC graduates from other countries, listed by country and city, included:

BrazilSorocaba: Matheus Allonso.

ThailandChiang Mai: Bethany Cummins (Coe Scholar, magna cum laude).

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