June 18, 2024

Wittenberg named its faculty, student and staff Women of the Year on April 1st, 2014. The recipients were Dr. Cynthia Richards, senior McKenzie Hopkins, and Associate Athletic Director Joni Williamson.
Women were nominated by their peers on campus and recipients were selected by a committee according to Director of Greek Life Carol Preston, who opened the event alongside Casey Gill, Interim Dean of Students.
Richards, who is also the English Department Chair on campus, said that it was the most stunned and honored she ever felt.
“Three points come to mind: feeling strong, feeling confident and strong. It’s normal for women to question themselves in that regard; for them [the selection committee and students] to be so sure that I embody those qualities is a huge gift,” said Richards.
Richards is known for her incorporation of women’s history and literature in the classroom that captures the interest of both male and female students. Her most recent publication, Approaches to Teaching Behn’s Oroonoko, was published last year.
Richards also stated that the other candidates were more than deserving.
Hopkins, a Business Marketing major, is known by her peers for passion in empowering women in and around Wittenberg’s campus.
Williamson, the former Assistant Swim Coach, is a favorite among students and pushed the switch from traditional paper logs to a new electronic scanning system for study tables at the Thomas Library, just one of her accomplishments.
The ceremony took place in Founders Pub with refreshments offered to guests that included both male and female students, as well as administration, faculty and staff.
Hopkins and Williamson could not be reached for comment.

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