LEONARDTOWN, Md. – The College of Southern Maryland (CSM) Foundation was joined by faculty, staff, and honored guests this spring at the Leonardtown Campus, to honor supporters with engraved bricks laid in remembrance of loved ones, and in celebration of colleagues and friends of the CSM community who serve as the college’s champions. Purchased through the CSM Foundation, proceeds from the sale of the bricks go toward the student success fund.
“We are here to acknowledge and honor the individuals within the community who have made a difference in the lives of so many,” said CSM President Dr. Maureen Murphy in introducing those receiving honorary bricks.
Bricks were placed in honor of:
- Kenneth “Kee” Abell, Sonja Cox and Dr. John Roache, generously donated by Dr. Murphy in honor of their leadership and dedication to the Board of Trustees.
- Captain Theodore L. Harwood, II, an emeritus member of the Board of Trustees, generously donated by Dr. Murphy.
- Master Chief Frank Ragin, Jr., laid to commemorate his retirement from the United States Navy after 27 years of service.
- Laticia Ragin, CSM’s Veteran Affairs Coordinator, to commemorate her service to Southern Maryland Veterans. Under her leadership, CSM has been recognized as a top post-secondary school for veterans and their spouses.
- Larry and Janice Walthour, generously donated by George and Dorothea Smith. Janice T. Walthour, a life-long resident of St. Mary’s County, served on the CSM Board of Trustees from 2007 to 2016. As a CSM trustee, she served on several committees and participated in numerous college functions, including the dedication of the Wellness Center on the St. Mary’s campus. For more than 36 years, Larry Walthour has supported her volunteerism and activism in their community.
Murphy, pictured left with her husband, then turned the program over to CSM Foundation Chair Kim Rosenfield, who surprised the president by announcing that the CSM Foundation had laid a brick in her honor.
“During her time at CSM, Dr. Murphy has repeatedly proved herself as a dynamic problem-solver and forward-thinker with a deep commitment to equity in education and to executing the mission of community colleges,” she said. “Dr. Murphy, we would like to say thank you for all that you have done for CSM and the Foundation.”
Rosenfield closed the ceremony by holding a moment of silence and laying a brick in memory of Doris Higgs Dearstine, donated by Beverly Dearstine-Russell. Doris was a lifelong St. Mary’s resident and a CSM student, taking courses under a JTN program, which is now the workforce development training program. Her education led to a position with the Department of Defense at Pax River, where she worked for over 20 years and helped service members with their tuition assistance, many of whom were students at CSM. Her experience led her children to CSM as well. Doris was a kind and gentle soul who put others over self and firmly believed in the value of community college.
An honorary brick is a lasting celebration of those who had a special connection to CSM or the Southern Maryland community. For a $100 donation, a personally engraved brick can celebrate a birthday, anniversary, retirement, special occasion, or remember a loved one. Since its inception in 1989, the brick program has recognized over 400 individuals in the walkways of the La Plata, Leonardtown, and Prince Frederick campuses. For more information, please visit https://www.csmd.edu/foundation/ways-to-give/brick-recognition/index.html or call 301-934-7599.
View photographs from the brick laying ceremony at https://csmphoto.zenfolio.com/p485292066.