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Winners were chosen from all four TCC campuses

HAMPTON ROADS, Va. (Dec. 5, 2012) Five Tidewater Community College faculty and staff members were honored as Virginia Community College Association (VCCA) Showcase Award winners at the annual conference held at The Homestead Resort in Hot Springs, Va.

Honorees were chosen by their peers for significant contributions to education and the college, and for their commitment to professional and personal development. The VCCA is the professional organization for Virginia’s community college employees.

Okema Bowers, human resource manager/employee training and development at the Norfolk Campus, provides training and support for staff members. Called to empower and encourage people, Bowers focuses on elevating employees to reach their full potential.

Margaret Dutton, administrative and office specialist III, now retired, was known as the heartbeat of the Chesapeake Campus for her work ethic and genuine demeanor. Dutton served in leadership roles in community service activities, including the Combined Virginia Campaign, American Heart Association Heartwalk, Relay for Life and Paint Your Heart Out.

Gary Noah, professor of Information Systems Technology at the Virginia Beach Campus, established the Computers for Student Success Program that provides refurbished computers to students in need. The program has provided more than 2,000 computers to deserving students.

Thomas Stout, associate professor and program head of Electromechanical Controls/Mechatronics at the Chesapeake Campus, created several certificates in renewable energy, marine mechanical, fiber optics and data cabling. Given the need for additional classroom space at the Chesapeake Campus, Stout was instrumental in the installation of 30,000 square feet of modular space with furniture and equipment.

Barbara Vinson-Ratliff, public services supervisor at the Portsmouth Campus, was recognized for exemplary service to the college. Vinson-Ratliff received the TCC Appreciation for Exemplary Leadership and Service Award, the Commonwealth of Virginia Service Award and the TCC Service Award.

Vickie Rogers, academic advisor and faculty member at the Virginia Beach Campus, was recognized for 15 years of exceptional service in academic advising and teaching business and student development courses. Rogers enjoys working with a diverse student population, including international/ESL, displaced workers using grant programs and those with disabilities.


Tidewater Community College - the largest provider of higher education and Workforce Solutions services in Hampton Roads - served more than 46,000 students in 2010-11. The 16th highest associate-degree producer in the nation, TCC offers more than 150 programs including business administration, culinary arts, general studies, modeling and simulation, network security, nursing, and automotive technology. Among the fastest-growing two-year institutions in the United States, TCC was founded in 1968 as a part of the Virginia Community College System. The college serves the South Hampton Roads region with campuses in Chesapeake, Norfolk, Portsmouth and Virginia Beach as well as the TCC Jeanne and George Roper Performing Arts Center in Norfolk’s theater district, the Visual Arts Center in Olde Towne Portsmouth, the Regional Automotive Center in Chesapeake, and the Regional Health Professions Center and the Advanced Technology Center in Virginia Beach, as well as the Regional Workforce Solutions Center in Suffolk. Forty-five percent of the region’s residents attending a college or university in Virginia last fall were enrolled at TCC. For more information, visit