New Appointees to the Board of Trustees

Athens State University is pleased to announce the appointment of Ms. Cathy Dickens, Dr. Sandra Sims-deGraffenried, and Mrs. Missy Ming Smith to the Board of Trustees by Alabama Governor Kay Ivey.

Ms. Cathy DickensMs. Cathy Dickens, representative of the Fifth Congressional District, has been reappointed to the Board of Trustees for a seven-year term. She is currently serving as the Chair Pro Tempore of the Board until September 2018. Dickens was initially appointed to the Board in 2012 for a five-year term, and served as the Vice Chair Pro Tempore from October 2014 – September 2016.

Ms. Dickens currently serves as Vice President of Business Management at COLSA Corporation. She was formerly a Contract Executive in the Senior Executive Service within the Department of Defense at the US Army Contracting Command at Redstone Arsenal. She has also served in various positions within the US Army Aviation and Missile Command. Ms. Dickens is a 1993 graduate of Athens State College and received her Master’s degree in Management & Contract Management from the Florida Institute of Technology. She currently resides in Meridianville, AL.

Dr. Sandra Sims-DegraffinreidDr. Sandra Sims-deGraffenried, representative of the State-at-Large, has been reappointed to the Board of Trustees for a seven-year term. She was initially appointed to the Board in 2012 for a five-year term, and served as Chair Pro Tempore from October 2012 – September 2014.

Dr. Sims-deGraffenried has an extensive career in public education leadership. For almost two decades, she served as an advocate for public education as Executive Director of the Alabama Association of School Boards (AASB). Following her retirement from AASB, she was Associate Executive Director of the Alabama Nursing Home Association. She now serves as a consultant. Sims-deGraffenried earned her Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees from Athens College in 1967 and 1970 respectively, and her Doctorate from Vanderbilt University in 1984. She currently resides in Orange Beach, AL.

Missy Ming SmithMrs. Missy Ming Smith, representative of the Fifth Congressional District, has been appointed to the Board of Trustees for a seven-year term. This is her first appointment to the Athens State University Board of Trustees.

Mrs. Smith has served in various capacities with WHNT-TV and WAFF-TV, and was the first woman in Alabama to anchor an evening news program. From 1991-2014, Smith served as Director of Information and Community Relations for the Madison County Commission. She then represented the 5th Congressional District as Commissioner for the Alabama Commission on Higher Education (ACHE) from 2006- 2015. Smith attended Calhoun Community College and Athens State University, and earned her Bachelor’s Degree from Auburn University. Smith currently resides in Huntsville, AL.

The Board of Trustees is responsible for the governance of Athens State University and meets quarterly. All meetings of the Board and Board Committees are open to the public. The remaining members of the Athens State University Board of Trustees include Governor Kay Ivey, Mr. Ronnie Chronister, Ms. Crystal Brown, Chancellor Jimmy Baker, Mr. Macke Mauldin, Senator Arthur Orr, Ms. Maxine Randolph, and Mr. Clint Shelton.

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