Ten Outstanding Seniors Inducted Into 2011-12 Student Hall of Fame

Ten University of Mississippi seniors have earned entry into the school’s 2011-12 Hall of Fame.

Chancellor Dan Jones bestowed the honor Friday (Jan. 27) in a campus ceremony, noting that the selection is based on a student’s academic achievement, community service, extracurricular activities and potential for future success.

“Since 1930, induction into the Hall of Fame has been recognized as the highest honor a student can receive at the university,” said Jones, as he offered congratulations to the honorees and their families. “Hall of Fame recipients are chosen by a committee pursuant to ASB policy. Previous inductees have brought distinction to the university as leaders in government, medicine, law, journalism, business, entertainment, education, the ministry and a variety of other fields. Those of you selected this year join an elite group.”

The 2012 Hall of Fame honorees are Marianna McInnis Breland of Forest, Toran Sharece Dean of Hattiesburg, Davis Lee Gates of Terry, Caleb Miles Herod of Abbeville, Jonathon Troy Jackson of Madison, John Gregory Kaiser of West Point, Meghan Marae’ Litten of Petal, Phelton Cortez Moss of Calhoun City, Taylor Michael McGraw of Oxford and Marie Elizabeth Wicks of Ocean Springs.

Seniors named to the 2012 Hall of Fame at the University of Mississippi are (front row, l-r) Jonathan Troy Jackson, Marie Elizabeth Wicks, Taylor Michael McGraw, Marianna McInnis Breland and Davis Lee Gates, and (back row, l-r) Toran Sharece Dean, Meghan Marae Litten, Phelton Cortez Moss, John Gregory Kaiser and Caleb Miles Herod. UM photo by Kevin Bain.

Breland, a public policy leadership major, served the Associated Student Body as executive assistant to the president and vice chair of the Student Life and Athletics Senate Committee. She is a member of the Sally McDonnell Barksdale Honors College and Trent Lott Leadership Institute, serving on its Student Council Steering Committee. She belongs to the Columns Society, a group of 24 students who serve as official hosts for the university. She is a member of Phi Kappa Phi, the highest academic honor society recognizing scholarship in all disciplines; Mortar Board honor society, recognizing outstanding scholarship, leadership and service; and Omicron Delta Kappa leadership honorary. She was in the Chancellor’s Leadership Class and served as an orientation leader and in Ole Miss Ambassadors, a student-run organization that bridges the gap between student life and the professional world. She participated in One Mississippi, a student coalition that promotes social integration within the student body. She is a Mississippi Young Bankers Scholar, Comcast Scholar and Education Services Foundation Scholar. She holds the Martha Dale Fritts Ole Miss Women’s Council Scholarship and an Academic Excellence Scholarship. Her volunteer efforts include work with Habitat for Humanity, Salvation Army, More than a Meal, Crisis Pregnancy Center, and Boys and Girls Club. She is the daughter of Allen and Mitzi Breland of Forest.

Dean is majoring in geological engineering. President of the senior class, she has served the ASB as senator, director of student services and external legislation monitor. She is public relations chair of the Engineering Student Body and is a two-time officer of the Geological Society. A Luckyday Scholar, she holds an Engineering Ambassador Scholarship and Academic Excellence Scholarship. She belongs to the Black Student Union and is director of policy for One Mississippi. A member of the Chancellor’s Standing Committee-Student Services, she has been an orientation leader and a mentor in the School of Engineering and with Freshman Focus and EDHE, UM’s freshman year experience program. Her volunteer efforts have been recognized with a President’s Volunteer Service Award and include work with the San Mateo Empowerment Project, a road-building effort that Ole Miss students support in Belize. Her other service includes work with the William Winter Institute, Chicago Cares and N.R. Burger Middle School Beta Club. She is the daughter of Allen and Merlissis Dean of Hattiesburg.

Gates is majoring in political science and public policy leadership. A Luckyday Scholar, he is a member of the Honors College and Lott Institute. He holds an Ole Miss Alumni Scholarship and belongs to the National Society of Collegiate Scholars and ODK. He is president of Pi Sigma Alpha political science honor society. He serves on the ASB and Lott Student Council, and belongs to the Columns Society, Black Student Union and One Mississippi. His community service includes work with Hope for Africa, St. Jude, Leap Frog, Toys for Tots and United Way. His parents are Marcia Gates and Davis Gates Sr. of Terry.

Herod, a public policy leadership major, is the ASB chief of staff and chairman of One Mississippi. He is a Lott Leadership Scholar and Luckyday Merit Scholar. He was a member of the Honors College and served the college in recruiting National Merit and Achievement scholars. A member of the Chancellor’s Leadership Class, he was a counselor for Ole Miss Summer College for High School Students and mentor for Freshman Focus and EDHE. He belongs to Phi Kappa Phi and National Society of Collegiate Scholars and was president of ODK. A member of the Black Student Union, he interned at the William Winter Institute and was retreat moderator and coordinator for One Mississippi. His volunteer service includes work with city of Oxford Downtown Safety Task Force, Habitat for Humanity and So Others Might Eat. His parents are James and Ann Herod of Abbeville.

Jackson, a biochemistry major, is director of community affairs on the ASB Presidential Cabinet. A member of the Honors College, he holds a Nissan USA Scholarship. He belongs to Phi Kappa Phi, the Columns Society and One Mississippi, and was a member of the Chancellor’s Leadership Class and Ole Miss Ambassadors. His volunteer activities involve his work with the ASB, including Mississippi Tornado Relief, 9/11 Day of Service and Remembrance, UM United Way and Adopt-a-Basket. His parents are Jimmie and Adonis Jackson of Madison.

Kaiser, a journalism major, is the Columns Society’s new-member educator. His service on the ASB includes chief of staff, senator and deputy attorney general of elections. He was an Ole Miss Ambassador and orientation leader, and served as One Mississippi’s alumni relations coordinator. He was president of Lambda Sigma honor society and is a member of the National Society of Collegiate Scholars, Mortar Board and ODK. He coordinated the EDEC mentoring program. His community service includes work with OxFam Hunger, Homelessness Awareness, Sigma Nu Charity Bowl and Sunflower Freedom Project. He is the son of Gregg and Keena Kaiser of West Point.

Litten, a public policy leadership major, is secretary/treasurer of the senior class and chair of its fundraising committee. She serves on the ASB President’s Cabinet as director of student advocacy and is a former ASB senator. A member of the Lott Institute, she served as a counselor for the Trent Lott Summer Leadership Program for Rising High School Seniors. She belongs to the Honors College and was a group leader for its Freshman Venture to Salt Lake City. A member of the Croft Institute for International Studies, she was in the Chancellor’s Leadership Class. A member of the Ole Miss Forensics Team, she is a Mississippi Forensics League volunteer, having spent more than 500 hours judging and coaching high school forensics tournaments. In other volunteer efforts, she has worked with the Boys and Girls Club, Relay for Life and as a soccer coach for the Oxford Park Commission. Her parents are Ralph and Connie Litten of Petal.

Moss, a public policy leadership major, is a member of the Lott Institute. He is vice president of the Columns Society and director of the Big Event, a campuswide volunteer effort. He has been an Ole Miss Ambassador, orientation leader, publicity director of the Black Student Union and has held several ASB positions, including director of communications and director of academic affairs. He has been a member of Freshman Focus and One Mississippi and president of the Gospel Choir. He has served on the Minority Affairs Leadership Council and was the student representative on UM’s Faculty Senate, Council of Academic Administrators, Academic Appeals Council and Plus/Minus Grading Scale Task Force. He testified before the Mississippi Legislature’s House Education Committee in support of charter schools. His volunteer efforts include work with More Than a Meal and Boys and Girls Club, and he was a tutor in math and reading at Della Davidson Elementary School and Leap Frog. He is the son of Willie Mae Stovall of Calhoun City and Guss Moss Jr. of Grenada.

McGraw, a public policy leadership major, is ASB president and a former ASB Senator of the Year. A member of the Lott Institute and Honors College, he received an Honors College Barksdale Award. A member of Phi Kappa Phi, he was honored as UM’s student representative at statewide Higher Education Appreciation Day-Working for Academic Excellence. He is a member of One Mississippi and was on the Forensics Team and Chess Team. He was the videographer for a film of the San Mateo Empowerment Project in Belize, and while there, he taught in a sixth-grade classroom. His other volunteer efforts include work with the Boys and Girls Club and Angel Ranch, and as a youth soccer coach. His parents are Ken McGraw and Jo Ann O’Quin of Oxford.

Wicks, an international studies and French major, is a graduate of the Honors College and member of the Croft Institute. A Croft Scholar and Newman Scholar, she is a member of Phi Kappa Phi and Phi Beta Kappa, the nation’s most prestigious undergraduate honor organization in the liberal arts. She received a Barksdale Extraordinary Research Fund for an internship with the Virtual Manuscript Library of Switzerland. A member of the National Society of Collegiate Scholars, she made a presentation at the society’s 2011 national conference on the Honors College Lazarus Project, which uses digital imaging to revive ancient manuscripts. She is a former ASB senator, member of the Chancellor’s Leadership class, Columns Society and Ole Miss Ambassadors. Her community service includes her work as president of the University Lions Club, as well as other efforts including support for the Children’s Miracle Network, Habitat for Humanity, Green Week and Relay for Life. She is the daughter of Thomas and Caroline Wicks of Ocean Springs.