Averett University to Honor Alumni and Induct New Members into the Athletics Hall of Fame in Homecoming Ceremony

Posted on September 27th, 2018 by Danielle Staub

During Averett University’s 2018 Homecoming Weekend on September 28-30, the University will honor six alumni with Distinguished Alumni and Service Awards and induct five alumni into the Athletics Hall of Fame in a special ceremony at 10 a.m. at the Pritchett Auditorium in the Violet T. Frith Fine Arts Center (150 Mountain View Ave.). The University invites all friends and family who know the award recipients and the community to join in the celebration.

The Distinguished Alumni Award will be given to Tania Bethel White ’92, ’94, Tamara Ward Kotronis ’95, ’98, and Dr. Ayn Welleford Cotter ’90.

Cotter graduated with her bachelor’s in management and psychology in 1990. She later received her master’s and doctorate degrees from Virginia Commonwealth University. Cotter is currently assisting in carrying forward the Greater Richmond Age Wave collaborative which is responsible for making our region a great place for all people to age. Cotter is deeply involved with efforts to promote engagement and reduce social isolation in the Commonwealth. She has been known to say, “Let’s do something that does something.” She lives in Richmond, Va.

Kotronis graduated with her bachelor’s in finance and political science in 1995, she completed her MBA in 1998. She currently lives in Charlotte, N.C., with her two daughters. Kotronis is the chief of staff for LendingTree, which is an online financial services marketplace. During her 19-year career at the company, she has held a number of roles in finance, strategy and as the general manager.


White graduated with a bachelor’s in accounting and management in 1992, and completed her MBA in 1994. She currently serves as the chief financial officer for a bureau within the U.S. Department of Commerce. As CFO, she leads the Office of Financial Management, Performance, and Program Evaluation, overseeing all of the agency’s financial management activities including budget formulation, budget execution, internal controls, agency performance and enterprise risk management. She was born and raised in Nassau, Bahamas. She now lives in Stafford, Va., with her husband and two sons.

The Outstanding Recent Alumnus Award will be given to Danielle Fitz-Hugh. She graduated from Averett in 2009. Fitz-Hugh works for the Chesterfield Chamber of Commerce. During her time there, she implemented organizational structure, member engagement best practices and added a member relationship manager. In 2016, she was recognized as Chamber Executive of the Year by Virginia Chamber of Commerce Executives. In her spare time she coaches basketball. She is married to George and lives in Chesterfield, Va.

The Mary Jo Davis Lifetime Service Award will be given to Mary Clifton Franks. Franks graduated with her Associate of Science degree in 1966. She is currently an active member in her church and finds her most fulfilling time with Hospice as a volunteer, speaker and bereavement coordinator. Franks believes her many life lessons are learned through her time spent with Hospice. She also has been a part of Danville Museum of Fine Arts and History, board chair for the Danville Redevelopment and Housing Authority and has been involved with many other community organizations. She is president emeritus of the Averett Alumni Association. She is married to Jerry and lives in Danville, Va.

The Frank Campbell Service Award will be given to Faith Stamps. Stamps received her master’s degree from Averett in 2003, and is also a graduate of Harvard University’s Executive Leadership program. She serves as the CEO of the Boys & Girls Clubs of the Danville Area where she leads the strategic direction of the board of directors to serve over 300 youth in the Danville and Pittsylvania County area. She served as the 2017-2018 President of Pilot International Board of Directors after serving on the board for four years as secretary, vice president and president elect. Stamps currently serves on the Board of Directors for Middle Border Forward, a regional initative focused on community engagement, leadership development, diversity and inclusion. She is married to Larry, and they have two godsons. She lives in Danville, Va.

Averett Athletics will induct the following into their Hall of Fame.

Jimmy Allen coached the Cougars from 2004-2010. During his time here, he won 97 games. Since he began at Averett, Allen had an immediate impact with the Cougars having a 13-game turnaround. The following season Allen had a 20 win campaign and share of the USA South regular season title. His leadership brought the basketball program two regular season championships, three USA South Tournament Championship and three NCAA Tournament appearances. Allen saw 13 of his student-athletes earn all-conference while 18 received all-academic team honors. Allen is currently the Head Basketball Coach for the United States Military Academy at West Point. He grew up in the West Point area, and his father used to be a professor there. He lives in West Point, NY.

Lindi Beamon graduated in 2002 with a Bachelor of Science in Sports Medicine. Beamon played softball at Averett for four years. With her time here, Beamon earned USA South All- Conference First team honors three times and all-state accolades. She was also picked Averett’s Female Student Athlete of the year in 2002. Beamon also had the chance to play overseas in Holland and Amsterdam for the U.S. softball team in 2000. She works at Roman Eagle Rehabilitation Center. She is a pet lover, has one son, and is getting married in October. She lives in Danville, Va.

Sandra Johansson graduated in 2014. While at Averett, Johansson played four seasons for Averett women’s soccer team. She acquired four-time USA South All-Conference selections, two-time all-state and all-region pick, and voted USA South Player of the Year. While also helping the Cougars win USA south Conference Crown in 2012. Since leaving Averett, Johansson works in private pathology lab doing cancer research and clinical diagnosis of skin cancer, but she still plays soccer during her free time. She lives in Gothenburg, Sweden.

Pernilla Milton graduated in 2013. At Averett, Milton played three seasons, despite an injury her freshman year. During her time here at Averett, she earned USA South Player of the Year, earned All-Conference every year and even USA South Tournament MVP, also helping the Cougars to their first NCAA tournament. Since leaving Averett she plays soccer professionally in her home country Sweden for the soccer team. Milton also starred in the Swedish version of Gladiators and made the finals, and ended by placing second over thousands of applicants. In addition, she works for the family business of wholesale flowers. She lives in Gothenburg, Sweden.

Jonathon Rumley graduated from Averett in 2009. He starred on the men’s basketball team from 2006-2009. During his time here, Rumley helped the Cougars win three consecutive USA South Conference Tournament Championships and make three NCAA tournament appearances in a row. He was also named as an NABC First Team All- American following his senior year. More awards Rumley acquired while at Averett include: NABC South Region Player of the Year, VaSID State Player of the Year, and USA South Player of the Year, two time USA South All- Conference First Team and two time USA South Tournament MVP. He works for the Winston-Salem Fire Department. He still is active with basketball as a collegiate official. Rumley is married to Diana, they have two daughters and live in Winston-Salem, N.C.