Edward Hughes Nicholson '54
(Year Awarded 2004)
Edward Hughes Nicholson has made an indelible mark on Davidson since he first arrived on campus in the fall of 1950. Not only did Ed complete a major in business and a minor in history, but he also managed to amass an incredible record of achievement in extracurricular activities. He was on the college swim team, part of the male chorus, served on the staff of Quips and Cranks, was the Davidsonian business manager, remained active with the Methodist student group, and was a member of Phi Delta Theta fraternity.
After graduation Ed joined the United States Army, where his military service of two years included a tour of duty in Korea. He also married Nancy Whitenack in 1954, and they will celebrate their golden anniversary later this year. In 1959, Ed and his family moved to Roanoke, Virginia, and have called that area home ever since. Ed’s career has been as a stock broker and investment consultant; if as Tolstoy has written, however, “The vocation of every man and woman is to serve other people,” then Ed’s true calling has been his church, his family and his community. He has been an active member of South Roanoke Methodist Church, including having been named president of their men’s group and as chair of that congregation’s Commission on Christian Social Concerns. In addition, he has volunteered with the Roanoke Republican Party and Cub Scouts, as well as held membership in the Squires Club.
Ed’s “vocation” has certainly also included Davidson College. Not only has he been a member of the Alumni Association Board, but he was an Annual Fund Class Agent and member of the leadership team for the Campaign for Davidson. In addition, he has been a loyal attendee and participant in numerous chapter events and reunion efforts. Incredible as all that may seem, it pales in comparison to the fact that, after acting as secretary and treasurer, Ed served an incredible 18 years as president of the Roanoke Alumni Chapter. He also entrusted to alma mater the education of his son, Edward Hughes Nicholson, Jr., Davidson College Class of 1979.
Because your life has provided a remarkable example of unselfish service to others, because you have devoted such effort to your church and your community, and because you have shared with this institution your talents and your energy and even your flesh and blood, the Davidson College Alumni Association honors you, Edward Hughes Nicholson, with the Alumni Service Award on the occasion of the Class of 1954’s 50th Reunion, April 24, 2004.