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Alumni of the Year Awards

Covenant College is pleased to announce the 2012 alumni of the year award recipients. The awards were presented at the Scots Celebration Dinner in the Great Hall on October 5, 2012, at the beginning of homecoming.


“Our yearly alumni awards are special because they give Covenant’s alumni the opportunity to recognize specific alums for their work for the kingdom of Christ,” said Marshall Rowe ’87, director of alumni relations. “Each year alumni nominate fellow alumni. Those nominees are submitted to the alumni executive committee, who makes the final decision on each year’s winners.”


Alumni of the Year: David ’62 & Eleanor Rowen Fiol ’63


David and Eleanor Fiol have served as missionaries to India for forty-eight years. Affiliated with Mission to the World, they have been influential in the ongoing work of Presbyterian Theological Seminary, Bhogpur Children’s Home, and Grace Academy, a day/boarding school that David founded to facilitate Christ-centered education for the children of national missionaries. "We are proud to have the Fiols as members of the alumni family," said Marshall Rowe '87. "It is hard to quantify what their forty-eight years of ministry in both higher education and education in general in India mean for the Kingdom and more specifically for the people of India. They continue to carry on what the Fiol family is all about when it comes to missions and what the Lord has been doing through the Fiol family for so many years."


Grace Academy has an enrollment of about 1,000 students now, and David has worked hard to improve the education of students at both the academy and at Bhogpur Children’s Home. Eleanor has developed a Bible study program that is being used by their church and others.  The Fiols are actively involved in the life of their local church.



Young Alumnus of the Year: Sheldon Grizzle ’03


An entrepreneur, Sheldon Grizzle recently worked for CreateHere, a non-profit organization advancing the arts, economic, and cultural development of the city of Chattanooga. As part of his responsibilities, he managed SpringBoard, a business-planning program for Chattanooga entrepreneurs; the 48 Hour Launch, a business start-up summit; and the SpringBoard Peer Roundtable, a monthly meeting for CEOs to share experiences and insights to improve business performance in the city. The success of his work inspired him to found the Company Lab, a resource for Chattanooga’s entrepreneurial community. Sheldon has also been a key figure in the founding of the Chattanooga Football Club and Blank Slate Ventures.


“By helping others succeed,” said Krue Brock ’92, “he’s been instrumental in helping shape the vision of how entrepreneurship can help Chattanooga thrive and how entrepreneurship itself can thrive in Chattanooga.”



Alumna Volunteer of the Year: Sarah Jane Creech ’07


Sarah Jane Creech ’07 has served as a member of Covenant’s young alumni board for two years and truly exemplifies what it means to pray, represent, and give to Covenant. “Sarah Jane has worked tirelessly and with great dedication to introduce and endear prospective students to Covenant College,” said Matthew Bryant ’00, chief enrollment officer. “We count her as a faithful partner in finding the best students for Covenant.”


The assistant director of student ministries at Orangewood Presbyterian Church in Orlando, Sarah Jane has provided youth ministry internships for dozens of Covenant students. She helps recruit students to Covenant by being a representative at college fairs and by traveling with prospective students to visit Covenant.