Names Inscribed on Achievement Wall at WVU Potomac State


This Sunday, as part of the Weekend of Honors and in memory of the late Duke Anthony Whitmore, Ph.D., five scholars were added to the Duke Anthony Whitmore - Henry Louis Gates Jr Academic Achievement Wall.

Alumnus R. Ivan Pinnell Ph.D., earned his associate degree in journalism from Potomac State 1963.  Under the direction of Faculty Advisor Dr. Elizabeth Atwater, he served as a reporter for news and sports and was a member of the newspaper editorial board.  Additionally, Dr. Pinnell was active with the campus Circle K Club and with ROTC.

Dr. Pinnell continued his education at West Virginia University, earning a bachelor’s degree in journalism in 1965.   He earned his master’s degree in political science from Jacksonville State University in 1973 and his Ph.D. in human communication from the University of Denver in 1984.

Dr. Pinnell has enjoyed the distinction of experiencing several careers.  He served in the military as a Lt. Col., U.S. Army (Regular), Retired, during wartime from 1968 to 1989.  He was a prominent faculty member of the WVU P.I. Reed School of Journalism (now the WVU Reed College of Media) for nearly 25 years where he chaired the public relations program from 1989 to 2010.  He served as associate dean from 1991 to 2007 and as director of graduate studies from 2001 to 2007 as well.

The WVU Reed College of Media established the ‘Commitment to Service Award’ in 2013 as a way of honoring Dr. Pinnell for his dedication, commitment and service to students and to the College.  Dr. Pinnell was also awarded the Golden Quill Teaching Award that same year, which is based solely on student nominations.



Professor Kenneth F. Haines M.A., dedicated his life to teaching students at Potomac State.  During his 44 years of service, he taught French, Spanish, German, and English and upon his retirement in 1996, Haines was granted the designation of Professor Emeritus of Modern Languages.   He was also presented with a WVU Honorary Degree, Doctor of Humane Letters in 2015.

A Keyser native, Haines graduated from Keyser High School and earned an associate degree from Potomac State in 1950. He earned his bachelor's degree in 1952 and master's degree in 1953, both from WVU.  He also studied at La Sorbonne in Paris, France via a Fulbright Fellowship; at Indiana University; at Laval University in Quebec City, Canada; and at McGill University in Montreal, Canada.

He has been an active member of numerous professional organizations, including the American Associations of Teachers of French, German, and Spanish; Phi Delta Kappa; the Modern Language Association; the American Council on Teaching Foreign Languages; and the West Virginia Foreign Language Teachers Association. He has also been a faithful member of the Keyser Presbyterian Church and the Keyser Rotary Club, holding many leadership positions within those organizations.

Haines served more than 20 years as secretary/treasurer and president of the Potomac State College Alumni Association and secretary of the Potomac State College Foundation, Inc.  He also served as president of the Faculty Club, was faculty sponsor of the Student Government Association, and served as faculty advisor for 28 years to the Sigma Phi Omega Honor Society.

His dedication was previously recognized with an Outstanding Professor Award, a Distinguished Service Award, and the W.E. Michael Community Citizen Award.  He was also named a Distinguished West Virginian by Gov. Wise in 2001.

Haines has also given back to the College with the establishment of the Kenneth Franklin Haines endowed scholarship fund for students majoring in the arts and sciences and the Dr. Nancy M. Miller scholarship fund.  He has named Potomac State College as the primary beneficiary to his estate, with specifically prescribed allocations to further enhance his scholarship endowments and fund the construction of a unique capital project that will provide aesthetic as well as functional utility on the Potomac State campus.


Outstanding Student at Potomac State

Ali Barrett will graduate this spring with dual majors in business administration and economics.  As an active student participant while attending WVU Potomac State, Barrett has served as editor and correspondent for the College newspaper, The Pasquino; has served as the social media correspondent for the DECA Club; has volunteered her time mentoring and tutoring other students; and has performed in two plays at the College, Fiddler on the Roof and Oliver.  Additionally, Barrett has performed in more than 14 plays and is a member of International Thespian Troupe #1696.

She is a member of the Sigma Phi Omega Honor Society and has been named to the President’s List for all semesters that’s she’s attended Potomac State.  Barrett is a recipient of the BCA-CV Barbara Fulton Memorial Scholarship, the Wurzburg Family Scholarship, the Clyde E. Smith, Jr. Scholarship, and the J. Paul & Agnes VanMetre Kiser Memorial Scholarship.  She is also a Windhover Scholar and an Eastern West Virginia Community Foundation Scholar.

When not going to class or studying, Barrett works as a sales associate at Aerie and is the proprietor of her own business, Ali Barrett Photography/B.A.M. Interviews.

Her future plans include attending WVU on the Morgantown campus where she will major in public relations and minor in arts administration and communications.  Barrett would eventually like to work with the arts, promoting programs and perhaps musicians.  She is the daughter of Michele and Tommy Barrett of Hedgesville, W.Va.

Barrett also took home the distinction of being named the E. William Noland Outstanding Student during the Recognition Day Ceremony. 


Hannah Dickson will graduate this spring with dual majors in animal science, and in business equine production and management.  She has maintained a strong enthusiasm as a student at WVU Potomac State, balancing classes, work and volunteer efforts.

Dickson currently works at the College’s Indoor Riding Arena, with most days often beginning around six in the morning as she feeds, waters, and exercises the 22-plus horses making sure they’re properly cared for, before heading to class.  She also trains work-study students and assists with horse-riding lessons in the College’s riding classes.

A dedicated student who pushes herself to do well, Dickson also stays busy assisting with various student activities, serving as vice president of the College’s American Collegiate Horseman’s Association and serving as a member of the Ag & Forestry Club.

During breaks from school, Dickson works as a cashier at Saxton Outdoor Supply in Saxon, Pa., gaining experience in customer service, professionalism and other skill sets.  She also volunteers her time at Clark’s Quarter Horse Farm caring for the horses and young colts who have trust and control issues.

She received the Blue & Gold Scholarship and has been named to the President’s List for all semesters in which she’s attended Potomac State. Her future plans include earning a bachelor’s degree in the newly created program of Sustainable Agriculture Entrepreneurship (SAGE) here at Potomac State.  She is the daughter of Diana and Thomas Dickson from James Creek, Pa.


Sarah Whiteman will graduate this spring with dual degrees in psychology and sociology.  She’s a PROMISE Scholar and also a recipient of the Vandalia Scholarship, the Gibbs-Naughton Families Scholarship, and has been named to the President’s List for all semesters in which she’s attended WVU Potomac State.

Whiteman is a member of the Catamount’s volleyball team, serving in the position of defensive specialist, and was named Academic All-American for both years in which she played. The volleyball team also won the Region XX, Division II championship for the first time in the school’s history, earning them a trip to the national tournament.

In addition to her studies and athletics, Whiteman works at American Eagle as a sales associate.  She has also volunteered her time to help wrap presents for children during the Christmas season.

Her future plans include attending WVU on the Morgantown campus where she will major in psychology.  After earning her bachelor’s degree, Whiteman plans to attend the WVU College of Law.  She is the daughter of Jill and Tony Whiteman of Short Gap, W.Va.