ZonaDale Lyons Taylor and Malcolm White slated to join the NEMCC Alumni Hall of Fame

Two of Northeast Mississippi Community College's most influential alumni are headed to the college's Alumni Hall of Fame on Thursday, October 14.

ZonaDale Lyons Taylor of Collierville, Tennessee (formerly New Albany) and Malcolm White of Jackson (formerly Stone County and Booneville) -- are the newest inductees into the college's Alumni Hall of Fame.

Taylor and White are the twelfth and thirteenth inductees into the hall of fame since its founding in 2012.

Taylor and White join Sam Mosley (2019), Harold E. Lomenick (2018), Hugh McLarty (2017), Travis Childers (2016), Vance Witt and Earline "Woodsie" Woods (2015), Dr. William G. Jackson (2014), James Seth Pounds and Cathy M. Robertson (2013) and Major General Augustus Leon Collins and William "Billy Joe" McCoy (2012) as inductees into the Northeast Mississippi Community College's Alumni Hall of Fame.

Due the worldwide coronavirus pandemic, there was not a class selected for 2020.

To be selected for the college's alumni hall of fame, an individual must be an alumnus of either Northeast Mississippi Junior College or Northeast Mississippi Community College with a verifiable academic transcript on file. Nominees must also show outstanding traits of leadership and character, be distinguished in their chosen profession, recognized for their career, service or volunteer efforts and have an elevated level of integrity in their personal lives along with gaining the recognition of their peers and demonstrating continued interest in Northeast Mississippi Community College.

As a member of the alumni hall of fame, members are recognized at the annual homecoming Alumni and Sports Hall of Fame Recognition Dinner and serve as grand marshal for the homecoming ceremonies including the crowning of the queen at halftime of the homecoming contest.

Northeast's Alumni and Sports Hall of Fame Recognition Dinner is set for 4 p.m. on Thursday, October 14 in the Claude Wright Room on the second floor of the Haney Union. Taylor and White will also be recognized pregame before the Tigers take on the Trojans of Mississippi Delta Community College at 7 p.m.

ZonaDale Lyons Taylor (1958-1959)

ZonaDale Lyons Taylor has turned a life of journalism and education into one where others will benefit from her actions.

After being named the student with the best personality in 1958-1959 at Northeast Mississippi Junior College, Taylor began a career that would see her become an industry leader throughout the southeastern United States.

Originally from New Albany, Taylor was one of the founding editorial staff members of the Southern Living and Progressive Farmer magazines, however, having a prominent spot in most Southern homes through her work, Taylor was focused on education and helping Mississippi and Southern students find their ways in life.

Taylor is a graduate of Northeast Mississippi Junior College, holds a bachelor's degree from the University of Mississippi and a master's degree from McNeese State University and finished post-graduate work at both Mississippi State University and the University of Southern Mississippi.

With a background in education, Taylor was an assistant professor at Mississippi State University and the former head of the Department of Home Economics at McNeese State University.

Taylor has been active in the community throughout her life which has led to prestigious honors for the New Albany native including being named amongst the Outstanding Young Women in America, the Who's Who in American Women, the Personalities of the South and a Foremost Woman in Communications.

In addition to being elected the student with the best personality while at Northeast, Taylor was a home economics officer, a Sigma Tau Sigma officer, a Wesley Foundation officer, an SCA officer and a member of The Torch, the college's yearbook.

Taylor has turned her educational and journalistic background into her main career and was even a manager of Consumer and Public Affairs at GlaxoSmithKline, a multi-national pharmaceutical company.

Taylor is also a member of Delta Kappa Gamma and Kappa Omicron Nu along with being the Northeast Mississippi Junior College Alumna of the Year in 1980, the Mississippi State University College of Agricultural and Life Sciences Alumna Achievement Award recipient in 2014 and the Mississippi State University College of Agriculture and Life Sciences Distinguished Fellow in 2017.

Taylor has been active in many local, state and national organizations throughout her professional career such as a member of the Board of Directors for the Mississippi State University Foundation, a life member for the Mississippi 4-H Foundation Advisory Council, the past president and director of the national board for the Electrical Women's Round Table, Inc, the past president of the American Association of University Women, the past president of the Business and Professional Women's Club, the past president of the Southern Club of Pittsburgh, the past chairman of the National Home Economics Administrators and served on the board for the Society of Consumer Affairs Professionals.

When not active in her community through work or professional organizations, Taylor is a volunteer on the Hospitably Committee at Hope Presbyterian Church, a longtime volunteer for the FedEx - St. Jude Golf Classic and has supported the efforts of students through scholarships at Northeast Mississippi Community College, Mississippi State University, the University of Mississippi, the University of Memphis, McNeese State University and The Mississippi 4-H Foundation.

Taylor has always held a special place for Northeast and has donated over $100,000 to the college's Development Foundation and Alumni Association in the way of three endowed scholarships - the ZonaDale Taylor Endowed Scholarship, the ZonaDale and Charles Taylor Endowed Scholarship and the Dr. Bonita Lyons Memorial Endowed Scholarship.

Malcolm White (1970-1971)

Malcolm White is one of Northeast's native sons and has turned his career into promoting the hospitality and tourism industry in Mississippi throughout southeast, the nation and the world.

White is the son of former Northeast Mississippi Junior College president Harold T. White (NEMCC Sports Hall of Fame inductee in 2008) and spent time on the 1970 and 1971 football teams under the tutelage of Northeast Mississippi Community College Sports Hall of Fame member William "Bill" Ward.

A native of Stone County and Booneville, White holds a bachelor's degree in social studies from the University of Mississippi in Hattiesburg and has been turning his love for history into a passion throughout his life.

White has served on various civic and professional organizations, boards and commissions throughout his working career including being the chairperson for the Mississippi Blues Commission and the Jackson Historic Preservation Commission.

However, White may be known most for his ownership and operating of a historic and iconic gathering spot in the capital city - Hal & Mal's - which pays homage to the two founding members of the restaurant and both of Harold T. White's son.

Throughout the years Hal & Mal's has become a cultural melting pot for extraordinary events and festivals throughout Mississippi and the restaurant owner is credited with creating the Hal's St. Paddy's Parade in Jackson that benefits the Blair E. Batson Hospital for Children at the University of Mississippi Medical Center and generates over $10 million in economic impact for the City of Jackson each year.

Hal & Mal's received the 2020 Keeping The Blues Alive Award from The Blues Foundation for its work toward the Mississippi tourism industry. White has even authored a book about his family's 36-year business enterprise entitled, The Artful Evolution of Hal & Mal's, which takes readers through stories about the famed Jackson landmark.

In addition to The Artful Evolution of Hal & Mal's, released in 2018, White has become an accomplished author with Little Stories: A Collection of Mississippi Photos (2015) and was featured in the 2014 edition of Mississippi Entrepreneurs. The Mississippi Humanities Council has honored White with the Preserver of Culture Award at the state level.

White's love for hospitality was only matched by his love for tourism in the state and the Northeast son wrapped up a 12-year career with the Mississippi Arts Commission, an art-based granting and service agency, in September 2020 that saw him help bring tourism and the film industry to the Magnolia State.

White also served as the director for Visit Mississippi, the state's tourism office, where in his capacity, he developed and implemented plans to bolster economic growth and opportunities throughout Mississippi through tourism and promoted the state's creative economy as a travel destination and film location.

Currently, White is the co-host for the weekly radio show, Deep South Dining on Mississippi Public Broadcasting and contributes to the Mississippi Arts Hour - a project he began while with the Mississippi Arts Council. White was instrumental in starting a $25,000 scholarship endowment in the memory of his parents, Mr. and Mrs. Harold and Jane White.

Today, White enjoys his early retirement and is focused on gardening and being a grandparent.

About Northeast Mississippi Community College Development Foundation 

Northeast's Development Foundation offers a comprehensive program of giving opportunities and is specifically responsible for gifts to the college involving estate planning, real estate, insurance, endowments, annuities, trusts, pooled income funds or other special donations that require ongoing management or binding agreements. It exists to serve Northeast by providing programs and benefits not fully provided by other sources. For more information about becoming a game sponsor or making a donation to the foundation, contact Northeast Development Foundation executive director Patrick Eaton at 662-720-7165 or email dpeaton@nemcc.edu.

 

Information about Northeast Mississippi Community College

Northeast Mississippi Community College, located in Booneville, Mississippi, is continually moving forward.

In the spring of 2020, Northeast became just one of four community colleges in the world to reach the prestigious Apple Distinguished School designation. NEMCC was the recipient of the Ellucian Impact Award for 2020 that recognizes the college's advancements in technology and is the only school in the nation to receive the award with the second award going to the University of Greenwich in London and Kent, United Kingdom.

Northeast has been named one of the top colleges and universities in Mississippi and was recognized by the Mississippi Business Journal as the Healthiest Workplace in Mississippi as it pertains to colleges and universities.

In addition to being one of the top colleges and universities in the nation, OnlineColleges.com recognized Northeast as the top school in the state of Mississippi for online education out of all colleges and universities, including four-year colleges and universities.

ZIPPIA has honored Northeast as the top community college in Mississippi in preparing students for the workforce and Northeast became the first college or university to offer a Z-degree (zero textbook cost) degree in the state of Mississippi as well.

Northeast athletics can also boast that it is home to a new ultramodern baseball and softball facility and currently holds the record for largest video boards for both sports in the community college ranks in the state.

The Chronicle of Higher Education has designated the college as one of its 'Best Places to Work For,' and CollegeChoice.nethas named Northeast a Top 25 Community and Junior College in the country while The Center for Digital Education has recognized Northeast as a Top 10 Digital Community College in the nation.

Campus Labs recently named Northeast as one of two educational institutions in the nation as a Campus Labs Trailblazer Award honoree. The Campus Labs Trailblazer Award is based on the college creating a culture of assessment on campus through Campus Labs Planning to increase institutional adoption, focus on continuous improvement, and closing the loop in the institutional assessment priorities.

For more information about Northeast Mississippi Community College, visit http://www.nemcc .edu.

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