Greenville College Honors Alumni


Greenville College has announced the winners of its 2015 Alumni Awards. This year’s honors go to Distinguished Alumnus David Altopp of Cleveland, TN; Outstanding Young Alumna Sonya Jones of Sherman, IL; and Loyalty Awardees Howard and Virginia Schantz of Greenville.

The college will formally recognize the honorees during a Homecoming chapel service Friday, October 16, at 9:30 a.m. in Whitlock Music Center. Jones will deliver the chapel message. The public is invited to attend.

Altopp, a member of the Class of 1966, has served at the highest levels of leadership in collegiate baseball including president of the American Baseball Coaches Association (ABCA) and the National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics (NAIA) Baseball. Inducted into numerous halls of fame, he has also coached U.S. national teams and served as National Director for the Fellowship of Christian Athletes Baseball Ministry.

Outstanding Young Alumna Sonya Jones, member of the Class of 1996, gained instant recognition as a finalist on NBC’s reality television show “The Biggest Loser.” Jones shed half her body weight and steeled her inner resolve as cameras rolled during the 17-week taping. “I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me,” she repeated throughout the grueling challenge, “all things, all things.” In her college days, Jones played Panther softball and was named All American Player of the Year. She was the first Greenville player to hit a ball out of the park. Jones presently teaches physical education and coaches track near Springfield, IL.

Long time Greenville residents, Loyalty Awardees Howard and Virginia Schantz are members of the Classes of 1960 and 1959 respectively. Faithful financial champions of the college, they are also familiar faces at college concerts, sporting events, fine arts programs, and colloquia. They willingly serve as greeters at local alumni events and Howard was among the unpaid volunteers who recently remodeled the locker rooms and coaches’ offices in the Burritt-Long athletic complex.

Selection for Greenville College alumni awards is based on a formal nomination and review process. For additional information about nominating alumni for the 2016 Alumni Awards, contact Norm Hall, senior advisor to the president for alumni relations at 618.664.6500 or

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