FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
April 16, 2011
Contact: Anika Mitchell Perkins
MUW Alumni Association announces award winners
COLUMBUS, Miss. – The Mississippi University for Women Alumni Association recognized three deserving individuals for contributions to their respective fields and the university.
The award winners were announced on Saturday at the annual meeting of the Alumni Association during Homecoming.
Phillip “Flapp” Cockrell, who currently serves as director of student life, was presented the Recent Graduate Award, which recognizes alumni for outstanding contributions in their careers and to the university within 15 years of their graduation from MUW. Cockrell graduated from The W in 2003.
He is an active member of Phi Beta Sigma Fraternity and serves as the chairperson for the Pan-African Network, which is one of five networks associated with the American College Personnel Association’s Standing Committee for Multicultural Affairs. In this role, Cockrell is responsible for working with student affairs practitioners of color across the nation to promote scholarship, professionalism, research and advocacy. He also is a charter member of the Professional Leadership Alliance of Columbus, and he has been named to Who’s Who in Black Mississippi. Currently, he is in the midst of obtaining his doctorate at Jackson State University.
Mitzi Green, president of the Alumni Association board, said, “Flapp considers working at MUW a personal achievement because he is able to give back to the institution by offering programs and services to enhance the development of future alumni of MUW.”
The Distinguished Achievement Award is presented to alumni and friends of the university who have achieved professional distinction and made significant community service contributions at the local, national and/or international level, bringing distinction and honor to the university.
The recipient of this year’s award was Dr. Shirley Graves Modell, a member of the Class of 1957. Dr. Modell received her M.D. from the University of Miami School of Medicine in 1966. Following her internships and residencies in pediatrics and anesthesiology, she began her very distinguished career in medicine. She currently serves as professor emeritus at the University of Florida College of Medicine’s Department of Anesthesiology and Department of Pediatrics. Modell has been named twice as one of the Best Doctors in America from the Southeast Region, and a pediatric intensive care unit at Shands Hospital at the University of Florida in Gainesville has been named in her honor.
Dr. Modell has served on both the American Board of Anesthesiology and the American Board of Pediatrics. In addition, she has published extensively in numerous books, journals and other professional publications.
Green said, “Her record of service in the medical field is truly outstanding. We are very proud of Dr. Modell for what she has accomplished during her career and for her commitment to MUW and its future.”
The Alumni Service Award was presented to Renee Nick Flynt for consistently demonstrating outstanding commitment, dedication, leadership and service to the advancement of the university and Alumni Association.
A member of the Class of 1981 and a former Miss W, Flynt began her career as an admissions recruiter at MUW. She then moved to Washington, D.C., where she served on the staff of United States Senator Thad Cochran for 11 years. She dedicated her attention to raising two daughters and serving as a volunteer leader in her communities and for her alma mater. Her leadership ability, high energy and commitment to educational excellence have served her well in her many roles. Flynt is a past president and current member of the MUW Alumni Association Board of Directors, a member of the MUW Foundation Board of Directors, president-elect of the Applause Friends of the Arts program at Jackson Preparatory School and a member of the Board of Directors for the Mississippi Craftsman Guild.
“Renee’s continued commitment to bettering her community and the university is an inspiration to all of us,” Green said.
Nominations for this year’s recipients were open to all members of the Alumni Association, the university Cabinet and deans earlier in the spring.