College to honor outstanding alumni at Homecoming

Oct. 3, 2014

Ternisha Miles Jones
Ternisha Miles Jones

LaGrange College will celebrate the accomplishments of outstanding alumni during Homecoming activities Oct. 17-19.

This year’s Shackelford Alumni Achievement Award winners are Diane Kilpatrick Brunet-Garcia ’80 of Jacksonville, Fla.; Porter Pierpont Morgan ’62 of Hilton Head, S.C.; Joseph “Joe” Louis Bell ’99 of Atlanta; and Bobbie Harris Burkes ’71 of Fairburn.

The inaugural Outstanding Young Alumnus Award will be presented to Ternisha Miles Jones ’03 of Troy, Ala.

On Oct. 17, the honorees will be featured in a forum in Lewis Library’s Corn Auditorium, where they will discuss the impact the college has had on their lives. They will receive their awards at a luncheon following the forum.

Brunet-Garcia earned a Bachelor of Arts in English and Speech, Communications and Theatre from LaGrange College in 1980.


Before coming to LaGrange, she was appointed to the U.S. Naval Academy at Annapolis, Md.

She is co-owner and vice president of Brunet-Garcia Advertising Inc., based in Jacksonville, Fla., and Washington, D.C.  Founded in 2003, the firm offers multilingual, multicultural marketing, advertising and public relations services to public and private sector customers around the world.

With more than 20 years experience in all facets of marketing, advertising and public relations, Brunet-Garcia is responsible for the overall administration of the agency and oversees client relationships. Prior to forming her own firm, she held management positions for both advertising agencies and corporations, as well as serving as an independent communications consultant.

Some of her clients have included The John Harland Company, Kimberly-Clark, Coca-Cola, The Network of City Business Journals, Sprint, Time-Warner Cable, Dave & Buster’s, The Weather Channel, The Golf Channel and Walt Disney World Resorts.

Brunet-Garcia Advertising has been recognized with many industry honors, including 11 national Addy awards, numerous American Graphic Design and Telly awards, and six regional Emmys.

She is immediate past chair of the Cultural Council of Greater Jacksonville, and serves on the boards of the Friends of Hemming Park, the First Coast Hispanic Chamber of Commerce, the World Affairs Council and the Jacksonville Public Library Foundation.

Married to Jorge Brunet-Garcia, they are the parents of Joash Brunet and Justin Brunet. They recently celebrated the arrival of their first grandchild, Sadie Maria.

Porter Pierpont Morgan
Porter Pierpont Morgan

Morgan studied at Duke University before transferring to LaGrange College, where he earned a Bachelor of Science in Political Science and History in 1962. He did his post-graduate work at Candler Theology School at Emory University.

He served as assistant pastor at Northside United Methodist Church in Atlanta and as senior pastor at St. Luke’s Methodist Church in Mableton.

Following a career change, he worked as a financial planning consultant with Thomson and McKinnon in Atlanta. He then moved to New York City, where he worked at Dean Witter Reynolds (now Morgan Stanley). He rose to the position of senior vice president in charge of mutual funds, insurance and annuities, retirement plans, financial planning and general marketing programs.

From there, he went to the American Stock Exchange, working as an executive vice president responsible for listed companies, relationships with investment banking/brokerage firms and the institutional trading community. He also was in charge of the Exchange’s international activities.

Morgan moved to Boston to become senior vice president responsible for corporate marketing functions, corporate communications, new product development and other sales and marketing activities for Liberty Financial Companies. He also worked as president and CEO of one of Liberty’s subsidiaries.

He has served as president of National Mutual Fund Managers Association in New York City; a member of the Economic Development Commission of Oakland, N.J.; and chairman of the board of the Center for Creative Living, a family counseling practice based in local churches in New Jersey.

On Hilton Head, he has been a board member for Wexford Plantation Property Owners Association, Wexford Charitable Foundation and the Coastal Discovery Museum.

Morgan is a member of St. Andrew by the Sea United Methodist Church in Hilton Head. He is married to Marian K. Morgan and they have four children: Porter P. Morgan Jr., Laura E. Morgan, Neal T. Morgan and Ryan C. Morgan.

Joseph “Joe” Louis Bell

Bell earned a bachelor’s degree in psychology from LaGrange College in 1999 and a master’s degree in applied cognition and development at the University of Georgia.

He is president of Resolution Technologies Inc., a full-service information technology staffing firm. He oversees all sales, recruiting, operations and marketing functions for the company.

Bell began his career as an account manager at Insight Global before becoming vice president for business development at Internal Data Resources.

Resolution Technologies Inc. has twice received the Pacesetter Award from the Atlanta Business Chronicle, and the publication has ranked it No. 2 out of the Top 50 fastest growing companies in metro Atlanta for 2009-2012. In 2014, the firm was named a Bulldog 100 winner, recognizing it as one of the fastest growing companies owned by a UGA graduate.

Bell volunteers with the American Red Cross and works with Hire Heroes, an initiative that helps unemployed veterans find jobs. He is a member of Peachtree Presbyterian Church.

He is married to Blair Bell, and they are expecting their first child in December.

Bobbie Harris Burkes
Bobbie Harris Burkes

Burkes earned her bachelor’s degree in physical education from LaGrange College and a master’s in administration from Troy State University.

While at LaGrange, Burkes was a member of the Association of Black Collegians. She was one of the first six African-Americans to enroll at LaGrange College in 1967.

She taught and coached basketball, gymnastics, track and golf for 41 years, mostly at DeKalb County Chapel Hill Middle School. Burkes was named Teacher of the Year in 2011 for Chapel Hill Middle School.

During her teaching career, she taught at the elementary, middle, high school and collegiate levels before retiring in 2013. She also was assistant golf coach at Spelman College until athletics were discontinued at the school.

Burkes is a certified water instructor, and teaches first aid.

This year, she tied for first place in the DeKalb County city golf tournament. She and her husband, Willie, are the only African-American golf rules officials for the State of Georgia and have served for the last 10 years.  They help make and enforce the rules of golf for all pro and amateur golf tournaments in Georgia.

The Burkes have their own company, Golf Made Easy, providing golf lessons to inner-city youth.

Jones earned her bachelor’s in political science from LaGrange College in 2003 and a master’s in international relations from Troy University. She was awarded a law degree with honors from North Carolina Central University School of Law, where she was executive editor of the NCCU Law Review.

She worked as assistant district attorney for the Second Judicial Circuit of Alabama before being named an assistant attorney general and prosecuting attorney assigned to the Criminal Trials Division. She is responsible for prosecuting violent criminal cases throughout Alabama’s 67 counties.

As a captain with the Alabama Army National Guard, Jones serves as a judge advocate, representing its commanders and soldiers.

She is a member of the Leadership Pike Class of 2014. In 2009, she received the Outstanding Achievement Award from the Troy United Women’s League.

She is active in her community and currently serves as president of the Troy Kiwanis Club and is a member of the Pike County Chamber of Commerce’s Leadership Pike Alumni Committee. She is a member of First Missionary Baptist Church.

Jones in married to Phillip Jones, running backs coach at Charles Henderson High School in Troy, Ala. They are the parents of one son, JaCobian (Cobi) Jones.

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