WILSON, N.C. — May 8, 2023 — Frank E. Emory, Jr., executive vice president and chief administrative officer for Novant Health in Charlotte, will be the featured speaker at the 121st annual commencement exercises of Barton College scheduled for Saturday, May 13, on center campus at 10:30 a.m. Dr. Douglas N. Searcy will preside over his eighth commencement program as president of Barton College. Dr. Kevin N. Pennington, vice president for academic affairs, will present the 2023 Class of 261 undergraduate and graduate students.
Participating in this year’s commencement ceremony will be students who completed their baccalaureate degree requirements in December 2022 and May 2023, as well as undergraduate candidates who expect to fulfill requirements over the summer. Also participating will be graduates of the Master of Business Administration in Strategic Leadership, Master of Science in Nursing, Master of School Administration, Master of Science in Criminal Justice, and the Master of Science in Kinesiology degree programs.
The three highest honors presented to Barton students: the Coggins Cup, the Hilley Cup, and the Hemby Leadership Cup, will be awarded. The Coggins Cup is presented annually to the student voted best all-around by the Barton faculty and staff. The Hilley Cup is presented annually to the graduating senior with the highest cumulative grade point average. The Hemby Leadership Cup is presented to the graduating senior, who in the estimation of the college community (including students, faculty and staff) has demonstrated outstanding leadership throughout a career at Barton College.
The Lincoln Financial Excellence in Teaching Fund Faculty Member of the Year awards will also be presented. The awards, given annually to two faculty members, include a cash stipend for international study.
Amy Denton (class of 1994), president of the Barton College Alumni Association and its Alumni Board, will bring greetings to graduating seniors on behalf of the Alumni Association.
Commencement Week activities will include the Hooding Ceremony for the Master of Science in Criminal Justice graduates in the School of Sciences and the Master of Science in Kinesiology graduates in the School of Allied Health and Sport Studies will be held on Thursday, May 11, at 4 p.m. in Hardy Alumni Hall. The Hooding Ceremony for the Master of School Administration graduates in the School of Education will be held on Thursday, May 11, at 6 p.m. in Howard Chapel. The Hooding Ceremony for the Master of Science in Nursing graduates and the Pinning Ceremony for the Bachelor of Science in Nursing graduates in the School of Nursing will be held on Friday, May 12, at 10 a.m. in Wilson Gymnasium. The Hooding Ceremony for the Master of Business Administration in Strategic Leadership graduates in the School of Business will be held on Friday, May 12, at 5:30 p.m. in Wilson Gymnasium.
Barton’s Commencement Weekend activities will include the baccalaureate service on Friday afternoon, May 12, at 4 p.m. in Howard Chapel.
About the Commencement Speaker —
A seasoned business leader and corporate board member, Emory has more than 30 years of experience in the healthcare, financial services, professional services, technology, government, and public sectors. The breadth of his work has spanned publicly traded companies, private companies, and integrated healthcare systems. He is recognized as an accomplished industry veteran with in-depth expertise in business operations, corporate governance, risk management, legal and compliance, human capital, growth strategy, and community engagement.
In his role at Novant Health, Emory is responsible for oversight of the Compliance, Legal, External Affairs, Internal Audit, Risk Management, Privacy, and Diversity & Inclusion functions for the entire organization. He also co-leads the merger and acquisition strategy for Novant and has been responsible for the reorganization and transformation of the business since his appointment as chief administrative officer in October 2019.
Emory was appointed in October 2020 to the Board of Directors of ScanSource (NASDAQ: SCSC), a leading global provider of technology products and solutions, where he serves as a member of the Audit, Compensation, Governance, Nominating and Risk Committees.
Prior to joining Novant Health, Emory was a longstanding partner at Hunton Andrews Kurth LLP, an international law firm, where he served as co-head of the Firm’s Litigation and Labor Group and managing partner of the Charlotte Office. He specialized in complex commercial litigation and arbitration matters and ran the Litigation practice, where he was responsible for all human capital and personnel decisions with oversight of 250+ attorneys across the firm’s global footprint.
He is a recognized thought leader in economic development, workforce mobility, and public-private partnerships. He previously served as chairman of the board of the Economic Development Partnership of North Carolina, an appointment made in 2017 by Governor Roy Cooper. He previously served as chairman of the Charlotte Chamber of Commerce for 2012.
Emory also previously served on the Executive Committee of the Duke University Board of Trustees, including as chairman of the Academic and Student Affairs Committees, respectively. In those positions, he played a key role in the conception and launch of Duke Kunshan University. He is past vice chair of the North Carolina Blumenthal Performing Arts Center Board of Directors and served for eight years as a gubernatorial appointee on the North Carolina Board of Transportation. He is a past president of the Mecklenburg County Bar, where he was honored with the Pro Bono Attorney of the Year Award in 2008. Emory received the Citizen Lawyer of the Year Award from the North Carolina Bar Association in 2010, is a Fellow of the American Bar Foundation, and a permanent member of the Judicial Conference of the Fourth Circuit. He was the first African American and youngest chair of the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Planning Commission. Emory received the Order of the Long Leaf Pine in 2001, the highest award for state service granted by the Office of the Governor.
Emory was an Angier B. Duke Scholar at Duke University, then and now, its most prestigious academic scholarship. He was the president of the student government and studied in Oxford, England. He attended the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill School of Law on a Morehead Law Fellowship. Emory is married to the former Lisa Lewis, and they have two sons, Frank III and Ross Alexander. They reside in Charlotte.