Honoring the Honor Class


Class of 1966
Where Are They Now?

Ann West-Sampson | Rodney & Elizabeth (Bettie Davis) Thomas | Barry Black | Bryan Akil Marshall
Edna Thomas-Taylor | Dianne Hampton-Bookhardt | Joan Justiss Tynes | Marian Pelote | Mary Harris-Caleb
Melodie Thomas Mayberry-Stewart | Pearl Wise | Rockefeller Ludwig Twyman | Wayman Wendell Cheatham

Ann West-Sampson

  • Attended Oakwood University
  • Office Manager at Glendale Adventist Medical Center, Glendale, CA
  • Wife of the late James “Jimmie” Sampson, PFA CO ‘65
  • (2) Children: James Colon and Stacey Sampson – both PFA graduates

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Rodney and Elizabeth (Bette Davis) Thomas

  • They met and were “senior year sweethearts” at Pine Forge in 1966
  • After graduation their paths parted as she attended Oakwood University and he attended Ohio State.
  • After being drafted into military service and serving as a 4 year Air Force Viet Nam Veteran, Rod finished his education at Ohio State, earning a degree in electrical engineering.
  • What a difference 50 years make!
  • He worked for First Energy/Ohio Edison for 37 years
  • He served as Chair of the Elyria City Community Parent Council Committee
  • While doing this, Rod raised his four children by himself
  • Elizabeth Davis-Thomas attended Oakwood University and Andrew’s University, majoring in English and Music.
  • She obtained her Master’s degree from the University of Georgia in journalism.
  • She taught English and Music on the elementary level
  • She opened The Academy of Piano Performance in Decatur, GA which she operated for 18 years
  • She is now on her third career, as a court reporter for the Chief Judge of the State Court of Dekalb County, GA
  • Their paths crossed again on these hallowed grounds a few years ago, during Alumni weekend and as God would have it, their picked up exactly where they left off.
  • Rod and Elizabeth were (finally) married December 27, 2015
  • Their blended family includes 6 adult children and 8 grandchildren
  • God truly restores!

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Barry Black

  • Earned two (2) doctorates
  • Also received seven (7) honorary doctorates.
  • Written three books:  From the Hood to the Hill, The Blessing of Adversity, and No Need to Fear.
  • Only African-American Admiral in the history of the United States Navy Chaplain Corps.
  • Only African-American to serve as the chaplain for the United States Senate, a position he has held for 13 years.
  • Worldwide renowned “Awesome!” preacher and speaker
  • Wife, Brenda, (3) Sons – Barry, Jr., Brendan, and Bradford

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Bryan Akil Marshall

  • Class President
  • A nationally known leader and innovator in arts, education, culturally responsive teaching and social-emotional learning.
  • Published author. His book “Winning In America: The High 5 Model for American Education.
  • Professional Football Player
  • First “Strength Coach” in the NBA with the Cleveland Cavaliers
  • First African-American to have an exercise show on TV in America
  • (6) “Marvelous, Talented, and Smart children ranging in ages 14-16
  • Bryan, Jr. and Byran attended PF in their junior and senior years.

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Edna Thomas-Taylor

  • Graduate of the University of South Florida
  • Served 19 years as a United States Congressional Aide – first African-American Seventh-day Adventist to do so.
  • CEO, COO, of major corporations and Director of multi-million dollar Youth Programs for many years.
  • Chaplain, Counselor, Renown Speaker, Entrepreneur, Business Owner
  • A member of the Delta Sigma Theta National Sorority
  • Three Fabulous children – Junia (Ju-nah), Jamila and Jamaal – all attendees/graduate of Pine Forge.

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Dianne Hampton-Bookhardt

  • Attended Andrews University, graduating from Oakwood University
  • Assistant to the College Chaplain and Registrar for several years
  • Served 33 years as Legal Assistant in the Office of the State Attorney, 9th Judicial Circuit, Orange County, FL
  • Retired in 2013 and currently enjoying church and family activities

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Joan Justiss-Tynes

  • 36-year Certified Teaching Career in the State of Michigan
  • Who’s Who Among America’s Teachers
  • Teacher of the Year Award
  • Michigan Curriculum Advisory Committee
  • Lead Teacher and Acting Principal
  • Her mother – Mrs. Mae Justiss was a former teacher at Pine Forge and her father a minister.
  • She is married to Russell Tynes, who is in attendance (today).

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Marian Pelote

  • Stellar career as a Licensed Practical Nurse in the School System for the city of Savannah, GA – Chatham County Board of Education.
  • Awarded the distinction of “Nurse of the Century”
  • President of the Ramah SDA Jr. Academy Alumni Association for 28 years. Advisor to the “Alpha Bears” sponsored by the Alpha Phi Alpha National Fraternity.
  • Retired, working part-time as Assistant to the Lead Nurse for the Savannah/Chatham Board of Education
  • Her son, is a Pine Forge graduate of the class of 1998.

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Mary Harris-Caleb

  • Obtained her Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees in elementary education in the state of New York
  • Forty four (44) years as an elementary school teacher in New York and Florida
  • Recipient of two (2) Teacher of the Year Awards
  • In the Hernando County Florida school system, Mary, has put on yearly Black History Month plays with her elementary students – mainly Caucasian children – depicting America of the 20s through 60s.
  • Her plays were critically recognized for its authentic depiction from the ‘dress to dialogue’ – of this era.
  • She was asked to present it at The Tampa Theatre in the Uptown District of downtown Tampa, Florida. The Tampa Theater is a historic U.S. Theater and City landmark.
  • Mary’s has had a remarkable journey that lead her from Winston-Salem, NC to Pine Forge Academy, New York City, Florida, and beyond.
  • She and her husband of 42 years, Reynold Caleb (deceased) were the proud parents of seven (7) talented, all highly educated daughters.
  • Five daughters attended and graduated from Pine Forge.

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Melodie Thomas Mayberry-Stewart

  • First black female to receive a PhD with a specialty in Information Systems Management from the Peter F. Drucker School of Executive Management at Claremont Graduate University.
  • Served as an Instructor at the IBM Advanced Technical Education Center in Los Angeles
  • First black female to serve as IBM systems engineer.
  • Pioneered the development of electronic medical records and other major technology “Firsts” in the health care industry
  • Appointed by then Governor Eliot Spitzer to serve as New York State’s top technology advisor and was a member of the Governor’s cabinet as the State’s first African American and female CIO (Chief Information Officer) and Director of the office for Technology.
  • Her son, George Julian Mayberry, is the love of her life!

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Pearl Wise

  • Pearl is a four-year graduate of Pine Forge.
  • After graduation she attended Oakwood University and has since resided in the city of Huntsville, AL
  • Her years at Pine Forge were “life-saving”
  • Her aunt, Mrs. McGrew, served as the Dean of Kimbrough Hall
  • Her campus ‘moms and dads’ gave her the love that corralled her restless childhood which enabled her to navigate life.
  • Pearl has three children and four grandchildren.
  • Pearl rejoices that she was fortunate to be educated at Pine Forge and grateful for the Christian principles instilled in her during these fragile childhood years.
  • Using her life story as a reference, she now mentors and encourage others – young and old – to accept Jesus as their Lord and Savior and the enjoy the life He has prepared for them

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Rockefeller Ludwig Twyman

  • Valedictorian of the Class of 1966!
  • Valedictorian of his class at La Sierra University in California and Received the Ford Foundation Fellowship to study music history at Indiana University
  • Student of the Year, his freshman year at Pine Forge
  • President of Pine Forge’s United Student movement his senior year
  • President of “Rocky’s PR Miracles” a public relations company
  • He has worked with CBS Sixty Minutes and correspondent Mike Wallace, and nationally syndicated radio host, Tom Joyner
  • He is an accomplished musician
  • For 10 years he directed the Capitol Hill Chorale – (SDA Church, Washington, DC, Whitley Phipps, Pastor) that sang for the tribute to Nelson Mandela and Princess Dianna of the Royal British family.
  • By the way, he is still a bachelor and looking for that perfect Adventist Queen!!
  • He hopes in the future to use his media skills to increase the financial base of Pine Forge.

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Wayman Wendell Cheatham, MD, FACE

  • Board Certified in endocrinology and metabolism is Director of Research Administration and External Research Affairs
  • Leader for Biological Surety, Research Integrity and Ethics and Special Assistant to the Surgeon General of the US Navy for Clinical Investigation Programs.
  • Cheatham recently completed a one year term as the Executive Secretary of the Armed Services Biomedical Research, Evaluation and Management (ASBREM) Community of Interest for Department of Defense components that oversee, fund or execute medical research.
  • After active duty was completed in 1985, Dr. Cheatham operated a private practice in Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism in the Washington, DC suburbs.
  • Currently, he serves as Chief of Endocrinology and Metabolism and Director of the Endocrinology and Metabolism training at Howard University, Washington, DC
  • He has served as Director of Medical Affairs for a multinational pharmaceutical company; Executive Vice President for Research, Development and Regulatory Affairs for one of the World’s largest pharmaceutical companies.
  • Cheatham is widely published in prominent research journals, including the Annals of the New York Academy of Sciences.
  • Dr. Cheatham was Vice President of Pine Forge Class of 1966.

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* The above is not a complete listing of the class.