Davidson Alumni, Students Garner National Philanthropy Day Honors

National Philanthropy Day Nov. 15 provided a moment of gratitude for time, talent and treasure, as the Association of Fundraising Professionals-Charlotte gathered to honor nine award recipients.

Four of the nine honorees are Davidsonians, exemplars of Davidson's primary purpose, "to assist students in developing humane instincts and disciplined and creative minds for lives of leadership and service."

Boris Henderson '01, Outstanding Emerging Philanthropist

Boris Henderson grew up in one of the first Habitat for Humanity houses in Charlotte. Before that, he lived in a home with no indoor plumbing in one of Charlotte's most dangerous neighborhoods and failed the first grade. Today, in addition to his longstanding support of Davidson, Henderson has served on the board for Communities in Schools, is on the board of members for the Johnston YMCA, serves on the finance committee at Aldersgate Retirement Community, and is immediate past board chair of the Charlotte Chapter of Habitat for Humanity.

"Many incredible people and organizations are the reasons I overcame incredible odds," Henderson said. "They selflessly poured love, much needed encouragement, extraordinary resources and hope into my life along the way. They left an indelible mark on my life.... Ed Crutchfield (Former First Union CEO, Davidson class of '63) has been much more than a mentor since my sophomore year at Davidson, and his only requirement of our special relationship has always been to give back and pay it forward."

Davidson Refugee Support, Outstanding Student Philanthropist

Davidson Refugee Support is a student group that works with the Charlotte-area groups Refugee Support Services and Galilee Ministries of East Charlotte.

"This group of Davidson College students has contributed to this community feeling safe. Once a refugee feels safe, they can learn, and as they learn they feel at home," wrote Rachel Humphries, executive director of Refugee Support Services, in a letter of support.

"The biggest reward, for me personally, has been our higher education program in which we have been able to bring students from the Middle East to study at Davidson College," said Anmar Jerjees '18, who accepted the award on behalf of the student group.

Jerjees is an Iraqi refugee whose family lives in Charlotte.

"My family has always stressed the meaning and importance of giving back to the community as a form of giving back," Jerjees said. "My family and I have been blessed with many opportunities and chances in the past, and I feel as if it is my duty to pass it on. "

Larry Dagenhart '53, Outstanding Volunteer Fundraiser

Larry Dagenhart's citation noted his five decades of "inspiration to classmates, neighbors, friends, colleagues and community leaders.... With deep humanity, firm dedication and an abiding sense of responsibility, Larry has consistently distinguished himself as one of Charlotte's most generous and successful volunteer fundraisers."

Dagenhart credited law partner and fellow Wildcat William F. Mullis '33 with encouraging him toward a professional life based on "cohesive" community outreach in Charlotte. He passes that on today.

"I spend a lot of time with the young people in the firm and talk to them about doing pro bono work in the community," Dagenhart said. "The legal profession is a service profession, and you're supposed to be serving others."

Nancy A. and J. Mason Wallace '42, posthumously

"Nancy and Mason Wallace were loyal supporters of and generous contributors to the Mint Museum for years, and Nancy's estate left the museum the second-largest bequest in its history," the Wallace citation noted. "They were married for almost 60 years and enjoyed nothing more than giving back to where they loved and lived."


  • November 16, 2017