All-SoCon Faculty and Staff Team Announced – Virginia Military Institute – VMI Athletics – DC Initiative on Racial Equity
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SPARTANBURG, S.C. – The Southern Conference named its All-Southern Conference Faculty and Staff Team on Monday, with two representatives each from all 10 member schools being recognized by the league.
While the selections were left up to each institution’s discretion, the recipients all shared the common characteristics of demonstrated service to the institution and contributions to campus life and the local community. Faculty members selected have demonstrated strong contributions to teaching, research and/or service, while staff members are being recognized for bringing out the best in others and creating conditions for success.
The faculty and staff recipients include: The Citadel’s Dr. Kevin Skenes and Stephanie Fye; ETSU’s Dr. Natalie Smith and Jeff Shell; Furman’s Dr. Scott Murr and Dr. Brad Harmon; Mercer’s Dr. Chris Grant and Rick Cameron; UNC Greensboro’s Dr. Chris Kepley and Zach Smith; Samford’s Dr. Larry Harper and James Carlson; Chattanooga’s Dr. Mark Schorr and Christopher Stokes; VMI’s Col. James A. Coale and Dr. David Copeland; Western Carolina’s Dr. Alvin Malesky and Roger Turk; and Wofford’s Dr. Jameica B. Hill and Jeff Burney.
“The conference celebrates the outstanding work and accomplishments by these talented faculty and staff members at each of our member institutions,” SoCon Commissioner Jim Schaus said. “These are in essence the conference’s annual MVP awards for faculty and staff. We will publicly recognize these awards winners during a home men’s basketball game this year. Please take a bow for a job well done!”
The 2020-21 All-SoCon Faculty and Staff Team will also be recognized at home men’s basketball games this year, as they were not able to be recognized last season due to the Covid pandemic.
The 2021-22 selections are:

Col. James A. Coale, VMI
Col. James. A. Coale, who currently serves as Professor and Head of the Department of Physical Education, has served the Institute for more than four decades. In addition to his teaching duties, he established the Strength and Conditioning Department for NCAA athletes in 1980 and served as the director of that program for 35 years. In that span, he worked with all of VMI’s athletic teams in some capacity and oversaw numerous facility expansions and renovations, including the recent addition of the 10,000 square-foot Cormack Performance Training Center. His teaching interests focus on the benefits derived from resistance training. He is also passionate about teaching boxing, a required course for all cadets for the purpose of enhancing self-confidence and the development of coping skills necessary to deal with combative-type situations. During his tenure at VMI, Col. Coale has served on multiple committees/boards and has consulted with numerous businesses and agencies. Col. Coale also served as the On-Site Director of the College Orientation Program (COW), a demanding 4-week summer enrichment program held at VMI, for 32 years.
Dr. David Copeland, VMI
Dr. David Copeland is the Director of the VMI Infirmary, a position he has held since 1992. Copeland, who is board certified in internal medicine, supports sports medicine and the athletic trainers, while also coordinating with those in charge of military training to emphasize health and safe

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