Dr. Syntha Traughber West, BA ’60, writes, “Many thanks to Baylor Golden Wave Band Director, Dr. Isiah Odajima, for allowing me the yearly honor of twirling with the band during one football game with the Baylor Alumni Band! We actually get to perform at halftime!” West is the state recruiter and contestant coordinator for the Ms. Texas Senior America Pageant, having won the competition in 2001 and 2008. Contact at 494 Spyglass Dr., Willow Park, TX 76008 or drsynthawest@yahoo.com.

Dr. George Mims, BM ’61, writes, “I’m retired these days, but at age 80, I’m enjoying serving as substitute organist across the Houston area. It’s good to travel throughout the city playing various types of organs in different denominations today and seeing and hearing what’s going on in the churches, some in growth and some in decline, some with clear purpose and others stretched to the limit in too many directions. This exposure informs my concern and prayers as well as praises. So I play my heart out to encourage hope, comfort and joy for everyone I encounter each Sunday.” Contact at 12911 Ridge Bank Lane, Houston, TX 77041 or georgeellismims@gmail.com.

Years after thinking he had retired for good as senior vice president at Bank of Hawai`i, Dr. David Ramsour, BA ’62, MA ’64, was called back to Japan as director of academic operations for the Naganuma Japanese Language School. He works to develop the school’s relationships with academic institutions in the U.S. and Europe. Contact David and his wife, Carol Ann Hamzy Ramsour, BA ’67, of Dallas at ramhawaii@sbcglobal.net.

Polly Stevenson Gilbert, BA ’63, earned her master’s degree in library science from the University of Memphis. She married Dr. Ray W. Gilbert in Dallas, TX, in 1977, and together they raised her son Stephen. After teaching at Richardson’s J.J. Pearce H.S. for 10 years and coaching the National Academic Decathlon championship teams in 1984 and 1985, Polly was library director at St. Mark’s School of Texas for 23 years. Polly also owned TLC Inc., a tutoring company. She is a church deacon, Boy Scout merit badge counselor, president of Iowa State University Women’s Club and scholarship liaison. Contact at 2720 London Dr., Ames, IA 50010 or pollygilbert@swbell.net.

John S. Jackson, MA ’63, former chancellor of Southern Illinois University, delivered the inaugural lecture of the National Lab for the Study of the College President Oct. 22 at the University of Arkansas. Jackson’s lecture was titled “The Politics and Challenges of Higher Education Today.”

Ellen Stoesser Byrd, BSN ’64, was honored with the Albert Nelson Marquis Lifetime Achievement Award from Marquis Who’s Who, the world’s premier publisher of biographical profiles. For 54 years, Byrd has excelled in the field of nursing. She serves on the Dean’s Board of Baylor’s Louise Herrington School of Nursing, was named a member of LHSON’s “100 Legends on the Line” and has been recognized with numerous other awards. In 2013, she established The Ellen Stoesser Byrd Endowed Scholarship, which is given every year to a Baylor nursing undergraduate student.

Levi W. Price, DMin, BA ’64, received the 2018 Maples, Williamson, Daehnert (MWD) Award as the outstanding interim pastor of the year for the Texas Baptists Interim Ministry Network. Price served as pastor of First Baptist Church of El Paso for 17 years after pastoring several churches in California. He served on the Baylor Board of Regents from 1996 to 2002 before joining Baylor’s Truett Seminary as the first professor of pastoral care. 

Lewis Sessums, BS ’65, and Janis Baucum Sessums, BS ’73, celebrated their 55th wedding anniversary Nov. 23. Janis entered Baylor in 1962 on a Lubbock Baylor Exes Scholarship to be a twirler in the Golden Wave Band. Lewis played football at Baylor. They have two sons: Derek of Indianapolis, IN, and Todd of Whiteface, TX; eight grandchildren and six great grandchildren. Contact at 5330 County Road 7330 Lubbock, TX 79424 or lesclu@suddenlink.net.

Lawson and Kay Cook, BA ’67, MEd ’69, of Richmond, TX, established The Houston-Cook Endowed Scholarship Fund in Education in honor of their parents. The scholarship was inspired by Kay’s mother Gracie, who was a first-grade teacher and will support students in Baylor’s School of Education.

Dr. Mary Lois Summers Sanders, BM ’67, MM ’68, of Angel Fire, NM, established the Dr. Mary Lois Summers Sanders and Thomas E. Sanders Endowed Scholarship Fund in Music to support students in the Baylor School of Music. She is a member of Old Main Society.

Tom H. Gann, BBA ’68, MBA ’72, of Lufkin, TX, created the Tom H. Gann Endowed Scholarship Fund to support students from Lufkin and Angelina County who are pursuing business at Baylor. He is a member of the 1845 Society and Old Main Society.

Tom Kennedy, BA ’68, was honored as a distinguished alumnus of Gainesville [TX] High School. Kennedy earned a track scholarship to Baylor and served as editor of The Baylor Lariat. He graduated as distinguished journalism graduate and went to work for UPI and The Houston Post, where he was nominated for the Pulitzer Prize in 1978. He retired after serving as director of marketing for the Houston Community College System.

David Morrison, BA ’68, retired as vice president for communications and publications at Georgia’s Brenau University, where he served for 11 years. A 50-year communications industry professional, Morrison spent his early career as a journalist, working for The Atlanta Journal-Constitution and The Philadelphia Inquirer. He founded the Atlanta office of Porter Novelli and was a senior vice president in that international public relations agency, among other executive positions. Morrison also taught journalism at Georgia State University and was associate editor of Auburn Magazine.

R. Byrn “Byrnie” Bass Jr., BA ’69, was selected for the 2018 Texas Super Lawyer List for the 13th time. Bass is past chairman of the bankruptcy law section of the State Bar of Texas and past president of the West Texas Bankruptcy Bar Association. In 2013, he received the State Bar Bankruptcy Law Section’s Pro Bono Service Award.

Col. Fleet S. Lintz Jr., BA ’69, was honored guest at the annual Veterans Day parade and dinner celebration Nov. 10 in Mercedes, TX. Lintz served in the Marine Corps as a naval flight officer. He served in Vietnam and later attended Navy Fighter Weapons School (Top Gun). He retired from the Marine Corps in 2000 with 31 years of affiliated time and more than 1,500 hours in the F-4 fighter jet.

H. Vincent (Vince) Moses, PhD, BA ’69, retired as director of the Riverside Metropolitan Museum and as adjunct professor of the humanities at California Baptist University in Riverside, CA. He operates Vincate and Associates Historical Consultants with his wife Cate Whitmore. Moses has served as consulting historian for the California Citrus State Historic Park in Riverside since 1982, and as a consultant for historical documentaries on Chinese World Television, the BBC, the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation, and PBS Los Angeles. Vince and Cate’s new book is Henry L. A. Jekel: Architect of Eastern Skyscrapers and the California Style, 1895-1950 (Inlandia Institute). Contact vincate@att.net.

Past Baylor Scott & White Holdings Board of Trustees chair Jim Turner, BBA ’69, was honored in October as the Kerney Laday Sr. Trustee of the Year by the Dallas-Fort Worth Hospital Council. Turner was on the Baylor Health Care System board for 15 years, leading up to the merger with Scott & White. He became the first chair-elect of the merged company and served as chair from 2015 through 2018.