Chowan University announces 2016 Distinguished Alumni

Published 9:39 am Thursday, October 27, 2016

MURFREESBORO – In spite of this year’s Homecoming plans being scheduled at the same time Hurricane Matthew came to visit, Chowan was able to host their annual Alumni and Friends Reception and Dinner on Oct. 7.

After a small reception in their Wayland L. Jenkins Art Gallery several noteworthy alumni were honored in the Chowan Room. This year’s Distinguished Alumni Award recipients are Mack L. Thompson ’64, Milton A. Outten ’71, and Jenáy Nelson ’12. Wayland L Jenkins, Jr. was awarded the Community Service Award at the same event.


Mack L. Thompson – 1964

Mack Thompson received his Associate in Arts in 1964. Prior to Chowan, he graduated from Needham Broughton High School in Raleigh. He received his Bachelor of Arts in 1966 from Campbell University, a Master of Divinity in 1969 from Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary, a Doctor of Ministry in 1973 from Southeastern, and in 1972 completed the NC Baptist Hospital School of Pastoral Care/Clinical Pastoral Education.

Known as an outstanding leader in the Baptist denomination, Dr. Thompson held pastorates seven North Carolina Baptist churches.

Alumni and Friends Dinner honorees at Chowan University for 2016 are, from left, Wayland L Jenkins, Jr. (Community Service Award), Milton A. (Mick) Outten, Mack L. Thompson, and Jenáy Nelson. Contributed Photo

Alumni and Friends Dinner honorees at Chowan University for 2016 are, from left, Wayland L Jenkins, Jr. (Community Service Award), Milton A. (Mick) Outten, Mack L. Thompson, and Jenáy Nelson. Contributed Photo

Dr. Thompson’s post denominational service included Chowan University: President, National Alumni Association; Member, Board of Trustees; Campbell University: President, Board of Ministers; NC Baptist Retirement Homes: Member, Board of Trustees; Eastern Baptist Association: Moderator; Meredith College: Member, Board of Trustees; Raleigh Baptist Association: Moderator; Chair, Meetings and Plans Committee; and NC Baptist State Convention: Trustee Orientation Committee; Memorials Committee

Currently, Dr. Thompson serves as a member of Chowan University’s Board of Visitors and Board of Ministers. He is also a member of Campbell University’s Board of Ministers.

Dr. Thompson has been married to Carol Corbitt Thompson since 1965. It is important to note that they met at Chowan and that Carol is also a Chowan alumnus. They have two grown children, Todd Mack Thompson, who attended Chowan from 1987-89, and Clair Thompson Dunford; and four grandchildren. Dr. and Mrs. Thompson reside in Raleigh.


Milton A. Outten – 1971

Milton A. (Mick) Outten graduated from Chowan College in May of 1971. While at Chowan, he was a two-year letterman in Varsity Football. He received his BS degree from the College of William and Mary in June of 1974 and was a two-year starter for the Tribe’s football team.

He began his naval career upon graduation from Officer Candidate School in May 1976.

He received his Master of Business Administration (MBA) degree in December 1982; graduated from the Advanced Program Management Course of the Defense Systems Management College in 1988, and completed a Masters Degree in Systems Engineering from the Whiting School of Engineering, Johns Hopkins University in December 2003.

Following commissioning, Captain Outten served in numerous tours at sea including USS JOHN F. KENNEDY (CV-67) where he was designated as a Surface Warfare Officer. He later served as Chief Engineer in USS RICHARD E. BYRD (DDG 23) and USS BIDDLE (CG 34). In September 1989 he reported as Executive Officer in USS PREBLE (DDG 46), and later as Chief of Staff for COMMANDER, DESTROYER SQUADRON TWENTY-SIX. In September of 1994, Captain Outten assumed command of USS PETERSON (DD-969), completing this tour in May 1996.

Captain Outten served two tours on staff of the Chief of Naval Operations in the Pentagon. In July of 2000 he became the Systems Engineer and Technical Director for the STANDARD Missile Program Office and in August 2002 assumed the duties as STANDARD Missile Program Manager. In July of 2003 he became Director, Missiles and Surface Launchers for PEO Theater Surface Combatants and served in this capacity until his retirement from the United States Navy in October of 2005.

Captain Outten’s personal decorations include: Two Legions of Merit, four Meritorious Service Medals, five Navy Commendation Medals, A Navy Achievement Medal, and various unit and campaign awards.

In February of 2006, Outten joined the Integrated Defense Systems division of Raytheon Corporation as a Systems Engineer. He has served in various capacities with Raytheon and is currently the Technical Director for the Zumwalt Class Guided Missile Destroyer, DDG 1000 – the Navy’s next generation warship.

Mick is married to the former Carol M. Owen of Ashland, Virginia where they currently reside. The Outtens have two daughters; Elizabeth and Sarah.


Jenáy Nelson – 2012

Jenáy Nelson was born and raised in Richmond, Virginia where she graduated from the International Baccalaureate Program at Henrico High School in 2008. She was awarded a tennis scholarship, the Leadership Scholarship, and the Alumni Scholarship to attend Chowan. As a student, she majored in Business Administration with an Accounting Concentration and a Management minor. While attending Chowan, Jenáy was very active on and off campus.

As a student, Jenáy received various accolades such as being named Homecoming Queen, Miss Chowan University 2011-2012 and 2nd Runner-up for Miss CIAA 2012. She was the first to place in the school’s history of having Miss Chowan in the Miss CIAA Pageant.

Academically, she was on the President’s List, a Leadership Scholar, received the Benjamin Conrad Sutton, Sr. Award for Business Leadership, and was inducted into the Sigma Beta Delta Honor Society. In March 2011, Jenáy was featured as the Student of the Month for the School of Business and was nominated for the 2011 edition of Who’s Who among Colleges and Universities. Furthermore, she was chosen for the Order of the Silver Feather Service Award, the highest service award given by Chowan University.

Her involvement included being a Peer Mentor, member of the Phi Beta Lambda Business Club; soprano in Chowan Singers and the Instruments of Praise Gospel Choir; member of the International Students Club; four year member of the Women’s Tennis team (Captain her senior year), and the team’s representative for the Student Athlete Advisory Committee. She was in various talent shows and Open Mic Nights on campus, but was most often painted blue with the Smurf Club during the athletic events.

In the spring of 2010, Jenáy became a member of the Upsilon Iota Chapter of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority Incorporated. She served as Financial Secretary until graduation. As a Delta, she participated in many community service projects and events. These include being a volunteer for the Food Bank and Flood Relief as well as Adopt-a-Highway, where the organization has a highway surrounding campus.

Jenáy graduated in 2012 and had the honor of being the graduation speaker. Since graduation, Jenáy has worked as an admissions counselor at Chowan University, as well as a bank teller at Southern Bank. From April 2015 to July 2016, Jenáy attended the Culinary Institute of Virginia in Norfolk, VA where she received her Associate of Applied Science in Culinary Arts. She is now a chef and does small catering events.

Jenáy was featured in the gallery of Distinguished Alumni at Chowan University and is an active member of the Chowan Alumni Council. She is also a member of the Ahoskie Alumnae Chapter of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority Incorporated.

She resides in Murfreesboro and is currently the Accounting Clerk for Rivers Correctional Institution in Winton.


Wayland L. Jenkins, Jr.

Wayland L. Jenkins, Jr. is a native of Aulander and is a graduate of Wake Forest College (University). Following service in the US Army, Jenkins returned home and worked in various family businesses. Charles H. Jenkins & Company of Aulander and Ahoskie, as well as Marsh Chevrolet Company, Aulander, and Standard Chevrolet Company, Ahoskie, were operated for many years by Wayland Jenkins and his brother, Joseph Henry Jenkins.

In 1964, the brothers formed Jenkins Investments, a partnership devoted to management of rental properties, farm and forest interests, and financial investments. Through his good fortune and business acumen, Jenkins was an integral part of historic preservation in the Roanoke-Chowan area and specifically Hope Plantation and Historic Murfreesboro.

In 1999, he was instrumental in organizing and funding the Bertie/Hertford affiliate of the North Carolina Community Foundation. His interests are broad and many educational institutions, churches, civic, historical, and charitable causes continue to be beneficiaries of his generosity.

Since his collegiate career, he has spent a lifetime collecting art representing a variety of mediums. Having maintained homes in Aulander, Arlington, VA and Delray Beach, Florida, it is not surprising that his collection features a number of prominent artists in those states.

In 2012, the Wayland L. Jenkins, Jr. Fine Arts Center was established on the Chowan University campus. The Center features a permanent collection of original art and early 19th century furniture. Consisting of almost 90 original works of art and more than seven noteworthy pieces of furniture, the Center represents Jenkins’ talent as a collector.

Jenkins has also provided furniture and furnishings for the enhancement of the Camp President’s Home, including Cartier china, hand wrought Old Newberry Crafters silver flatware and Baccarat crystal.

Jenkins has close ties to Chowan University. The Olivia Benthall Jenkins dormitory is named for his grandmother who attended the Chowan Baptist Female Institute (Chowan University). She was also a recipient of the Distinguished Alumni Award. His uncles Charles H. Jenkins and Herbert Jenkins both served on the Board of Trustees as did his cousin, Herbert Jenkins, Jr.