We took a hiatus awarding this honor during the pandemic because celebrations for achievements like this should definitely be held in person! As soon as the criteria for the next alumni award nominee are announced we will post it here. We can't wait to see who our next President's Alumni Award recipient will be!
Read more about the award and our past award winners below.
The President's Alumni Award is bestowed on an accomplished graduate from SCGSAH who has shown a commitment to the arts and artistic achievement while embodying the school's key values. This includes continuing to cultivate a personal responsibility for intellectual growth, maintaining a keen intellectual curiosity about the world, and evolving positively as a thinker and artist, while also contributing in positive ways to the community.
- 2019 - Brandon Michael Hall, Drama
Brandon Michael Hall received the 2019 President's Alumni Award for his commitment to the arts and artistic achievement. At the Artist's In Bloom event Brandon shared how it only takes one degree for water to turn from boiling to steam, and steam can power a locomotive. "They gave me one chance to follow my dream. I came to this school, and I worked hard, and I did it. And I'm still doing it...This school gives these kids the one degree to follow their dreams."
- 2018 - Temnete Sebhatu, Creative Writing
Temnete Sebhatu attended the Governor’s School for Creative Writing and graduated in 2007. She was selected for her achievements during her career with Apple as well as her work with The One Love Foundation, helping educate young people about toxic relationships. Her work for Apple and The One Love Foundation has been awarded at the One Show, D&AD and the Clios. Her work for Conservation International premiered at the 2015 UN Climate Change Conference in Paris. In 2017, she was featured in Business Insider’s “30 Most Creative People In Advertising Under 30.”
- 2017 - Barry Brannum, Dance
Brannum attended Richland Northeast High School before getting accepted into the Governor's School's residential high school dance program. "This was my first foray into modern and contemporary dance. I was able to hone my commitments to classical and modern techniques, while experimenting in choreography," said Brannum, who contributed an original piece to each dance department showcase while in attendance.
After graduating in 2009, Brannum attended Princeton University, receiving an honors degree in English and a certificate in Dance. He was an active member and officer in the Princeton University Ballet and FUSE, an experimental dance collective. Brannon was awarded the department's Outstanding Thesis Award in 2013.
Currently, Brannum is a PhD student in UCLA's World Arts and Cultures/Dance Department where his work investigates representations of African-American respectability politics in the realm straddling popular culture and concert dance. He is also a teaching associate for the department and a dance instructor at the UCLA Performing Arts Summer Institute. "I'm fortunate enough to have continued spending almost equal time in both the studio and the classroom," said Brannum.
- 2016 - Rachel Inman, Visual Arts and Uchechi Kalu, Creative Writing
Rachel Inman is a Greenville native and graduated in 2007 from the Governor's School where she studied visual arts. She attended Carnegie Mellon University School of Design and, over the last 9 years, she has developed a unique focus on designing digital experiences that both delight and educate viewers and users around the globe. As an Interaction Designer at Google, Rachel has designed and created business apps, new tools for Google Earth Engine, Earth Outreach, Global Fishing Watch, and is currently the lead designer for Project Sunroof.
Uchechi Kalu, from Orangeburg is a 2010 graduate of the Governor's School Creative Writing Department. She then attended Princeton University during which time she traveled and studied in Jordan, Morocco, Egypt, Israel and Palestine. Since graduation, Uchechi has used her intellect and training as an artist to be a social activist for under served populations in China and throughout the world. Currently, Uchechi lives in Beijing and is a member of an arts collective called TransMigrant Flow which works to create workshops and creative events for foreigners in her area
- 2015 - Nichole Bahaire, Drama and Maggie Gould, Music
Actress Nicole Beharie, from Orangeburg, is a 2003 graduate of the Governor's School who went on to graduate from the Julliard School's Drama Division in 2007. At the time she received this award Beharie's most recent roles included Abbie Mills on the Fox television series Sleepy Hollow and Jackie Robinson's wife, Rachel, in the film 42.
Violinist Maggie Gould is a Greenville native and 2008 Governor's School graduate. Since graduating from the music program at Northwestern University in 2012, Gould claims an impressive professional resume, including gigs with Stevie Wonder in Madison Square Garden and NBC's Late Night with Jimmy Fallon alongside Elvis Costello and The Roots.
- 2014 - Patina Miller, Drama
This Tony Award-winning actress was born in Pageland, South Carolina. She graduated from the SCGSAH Drama department in 2002 and in 2006 graduated with a degree in musical theatre from Carnegie Mellon University.
Patina won a Tony Award for Best Actress in a Musical in 2013 for her performance in the revival of Pippin on Broadway. She went on to perform in The Kennedy Center's Honors Celebration of Shirley McClaine and appeared in her own PBS special, Live At Lincoln Center. Patina also portrayed Commander Paylor in The Hunger Games: Mockingjay Parts 1 and 2 and can be seen on CBS's Madam Secretary playing press coordinator Daisy Grant.
Learn more about Patina's Governor's School experience here.
- 2013 - Zachary Dellinger, Music
Recipient of the Yuri Bashmet President's Prize at the 2013 Lionel Tertis International Viola Competition, Zach Dellinger is redefining what it means to be a violist in the 21st century. His activities as a musician range from recording for television and film, speaking and performing at TED X San Diego, performing as chamber musician and soloist throughout the US, and conducting the award winning Los Angeles Children’s Chamber Orchestra at Carnegie Hall.
As a Chamber musician, Zach has recently finished recording the Tanev String Quartet No. 2 with the California String Quartet which was produced by award winning composer, John Powell. Zach has also appeared in concert with the Lyris Quartet and the Calidore Quartet.
As an orchestral musician, Zach acted as principal viola of the internationally acclaimed Colburn Orchestra from 2008-2011, the Santa Barbara Symphony from 2010-2011, and has also played with the Pittsburgh Symphony and Los Angeles Philharmonic Orchestra.
Zach believes strongly in the healing power of classical music and has committed himself to bringing the world's most exciting musicians together through the non-profit Street Symphony to perform for under-served communities on Skid Row, in the Los Angeles County Jail, and for Veterans suffering from PTSD.
- 2012 - Kelley Anderson, Music
Kelley received her degree in Recording Industry Management at Middle Tennessee University. In 2003, she established the Southern Girls Rock and Roll Camp (SGRRC) in Murfeesboro, Tennessee. This unique program supports a culture of positive self-esteem and collaboration among girls while building community through music. Kelley continues to lead this organization by promoting participation among girls ages 10-17, fundraising to support the program, and advocating for youth empowerment through the arts.
- 2011 - James Frank Tribble, Visual Arts
James Frank Tribble currently lives and works in New York. James received his BFA from The School of Visual Arts.
He has been exhibited and published nationally and internationally, including shows at The Shanghi Art Museum with Centre Pompidou, Houston Center for Photography and Host Gallery in London.
Learn more about Frank's collaborative work with his wife, Tracey Mancenido-Tribble, "Hurry Up & Wait".
- 2010 - Caleb Jones, Music
Cellist Caleb Vaughn-Jones has performed throughout North America, Asia, the West Indies and southern Africa as a soloist and chamber musician. He is constantly looking to bring lesser-known music to audiences as well as commission new works for the cello. After performing his original composition “Enigmatic Ambitions” after which the Baltimore Sun stated “[Vaughn-Jones] demonstrated again his exploratory grasp of the cello with an anything-but-classical approach to the classical repertoire.”
In 2016, Caleb toured the US with the Sphinx Virtuosi, which is comprised of some of the most gifted string players of African and Hispanic descent. The 20-city tour included a performance at the prestigious Carnegie Hall. Caleb was commissioned by the Sprezzatura Harp Duo to write music for 2 harps and cello, which was premiered at the 2016 National Conference of the American Harp Society in Atlanta, GA.
In 2011, Caleb went to South Africa to be involved in a music education project through the Eastern Cape Philharmonic and was appointed at the philharmonic’s principle cellist. He has since then gone on to instruct students at the South African National Youth Orchestra and produce award winning performances at the National Arts Festival in Grahamstown, South Africa.
He is also the Founder and Executive Producer of Regulus Sound Productions, which produces sound recordings for video game companies Conifer and Firaxis Games as well as album recordings for music artist of all genres. In 2010, Caleb performed as soloist with the Prague Filmharmonic in a recording for the video game Civilization V, which released in September 2010. In 2013, he produced recordings that featured the Nelson Mandela Metropolitan University Choir for the soundtrack for “Civilization V: Brave New World”. In 2016, he produced and composed music for the upcoming release of Civilization
Caleb is very devoted to music education and has worked with the Baltimore Symphony, Juilliard School, Boys and Girls Club of Greater Washington. In the summer of 2010, he served as the Assistant Artistic Director of the Juilliard International Jazz Camp.
Caleb was born in Charleston, South Carolina and holds degrees from the Peabody Institute of Johns Hopkins University and Lynn University’s Conservatory of Music. His cello teachers include Alan Stepansky (former assistant principal cello of NY Philharmonic), Dr. Robert Jesselson (professor at the University of South Carolina), and David Cole. He has studied chamber music with members of the Takács, Brentano, and Cleveland string quartets as well as received further mentoring from Carter Brey (principal cello of NY Philharmonic) and German cellist Alban Gerhardt.