2007 Distinguished Alumni | Louisiana College

2007 Distinguished Alumni

Rick W. Byargeon, Ph.D.

Distinguished as a scholar,  pastor, educator, author, and lecturer, Dr. Rick W. Byargeon has touched countless lives in fulfilling the mission for which God called him.

Rick graduated from Louisiana College in 1980 with a major in Religion and a minor in Sociology.  Dr. Byargeon went on to earn his master=s and doctorate degrees from Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary in 1984 and 1991 respectively.     He has pastored numerous churches since graduating from Louisiana College, both full-time and interim.  Currently,  Rick is pastor of Temple Baptist Church in Ruston, Louisiana.  In addition, he has spent almost twenty years teaching in Baptist institutions.  He taught at Southwestern Seminary, New Orleans Seminary, Oklahoma Baptist University and Louisiana College.  He also served as a Visiting Lecturer to the Baptist seminary in Singapore on two different occasions. 

Dr. Byargeon is widely recognized as an Old Testament and Hebrew scholar and has published multiple professional pieces, too numerous to list, but all scholarly and profoundly important to his field.

Dr. Byargeon has also distinguished himself as an administrator while serving as Vice President of Institutional Advancement at Louisiana College where he worked tirelessly in reuniting our alumni and structuring the Centennial Campaign.

Rick is married to Jonann Weeks, also an alumni.  They have one child, John William Byargeon

Louisiana College and the Alumni Association proudly issue this citation and honor Dr. Rick W. Byargeon as Distinguished Alumnus in the year 2007.


Byron McGee

Byron L. McGee graduated from Louisiana College in 1979 with a bachelor of arts  degree in Communications.    Since graduation,  Byron has touched the lives of countless Louisiana College students and alumni  from around our state and nation.     Byron currently serves as Director of Enrollment Management at Louisiana College.   In this capacity, he is responsible for all of the Admissions and Financial Aide activities for the institution.   Most alumni know Byron and have known him over the past 25  years as the Director of Alumni Affairs.

Byron has served his alma mater in both positions  faithfully and efficiently. All who know Byron know of his love for Louisiana College.  During his decades of service to Louisiana College, Byron has seen many changes and transitions and has remained true to Louisiana College and supported and promoted her to all who would listen.  He has truly been an outspoken friend of Louisiana College and a Distinguished Alumnus in every sense of the word.

Byron is married to Cay Cowley, also a Louisiana College alumnus.  Byron and Cay have three children, Haley McGee Blackmon, Byron II, and Walt, along with three grandchildren, Mallory, Molly, and Bodie Blackmon.

A vital part of Byron's life is his work in First Baptist Church of Pineville where he teaches Sunday School and has served as a deacon.

Louisiana College and the Alumni Association proudly issue this citation and honor Byron L. McGee as Distinguished Alumnus in the year 2007.


Dr. Carolyn Spears

Distinguished as an educator, administrator, and community leader, Dr. Carolyn Spears has shared her deep and abiding faith with everyone with whom she comes into contact.  She is an icon of Christian higher education.

Carolyn graduated from Louisiana College in 1962 with a B.S. in Health and Physical Education.  She later got her Master's degree from Northwestern State University in Natchitoches, Louisiana, and her Ed.D. from Louisiana State University in Baton Rouge.

In her 30 years as a health and physical education professor at Louisiana College. Dr. Spears has brought distinction to the institution and shared her tremendous character and reputation with students, friends, and strangers alike. She has literally taught generations of young people at Louisiana College and each one would say that she is an individual who has left them better off than they were before they met her. 

Dr. Spears has worked tirelessly promoting good health and well-being in the community.  While doing this she has consistently brought all of the positive aspects of Louisiana College forward with conviction, sincerity, and passion.  Without question she is one of Louisiana College=s greatest cheerleaders and supporters.

Dr. Spears is married to Allen Ray Spears, a 1963 alumnus of Louisiana College.  They have three children, Duane, Denise, and Dione, and four grandchildren.

Dr. Spears has served on numerous professional boards in the community as well as being United Way Campaign Leader for Louisiana College for a number of years.

For these reasons and many more, Louisiana College and the Alumni Association issue this citation and honor Dr. Carolyn Spears as a Distinguished Alumna in the year 2007.


Tommy Smith

Distinguished as an educator, athlete, administrator, and community leader, Tommy G. Smith has influenced the lives of students and individuals through the Central Louisiana area since graduating from Louisiana College in 1953.  Tommy Smith went on to get his Master's degree +30 at Northwestern State University in 1972.  Throughout his working career, Tommy  has been passionately dedicated to public education in Rapides Parish. 

Tommy Smith has worked with students in our area as a coach, a principal, an administrator for the Rapides Parish School Board, and as a consultant to childhood development programs at various colleges and universities.  While Director of Secondary Education for the school board, Tommy implemented two nationally recognized alternative education programs.  After more than 40 years of service in the school system, Tommy became Director of the Louisiana Youth Academy Boot Camp where the students have excelled under his guidance.

A vital part of Tommy's life is his commitment and dedication to his church where he has served for more than four decades holding positions such as Chairman of Deacons, Director of Sunday School, member of the church choir, and past budget and finance chairman.

Tommy is a member of the Louisiana College Sports Hall of Fame, has been president of the Louisiana College Central Louisiana Alumni Association, and has been a Louisiana College advisor for SACS, in additiontion to numerous other awards and honors garnered throughout his career.

Tommy Smith is married to the former Katie Sowell, Class of >54.

Louisiana College and the Alumni Association issue this citation and honor Tommy G. Smith as a Distinguished Alumnus in the year of 2007.


Dr. Paul Lionel Crowell

Distinguished for his leadership in the Southern Baptist Convention and the Louisiana Baptist Convention as well as for his pastorate of numerous churches,  and  for  his commitment to his community and to his family, Louisiana College is proud to name Dr. Paul Lionel Crowell a Distinguished Alumnus for the year2007.

Dr. Crowell graduated from Louisiana College in 1955  with a major in Religion.   He  went on to earn his master's and doctorate degrees from New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary where he received a Master of Divinity in 1958 and a Doctor of Ministry degree in 1974.     Dr. Crowell  has pastored numerous Southern Baptist churches throughout our state and nation since graduating from Louisiana College.  He has served as  pastor of Kitzingen Baptist Church in Kitzengen, Germany on two separate occasions. 

Dr. Crowell has held a number of leadership positions in the Louisiana Baptist Convention and the Southern Baptist Convention.  He has also served on the boards of Louisiana College and East Texas Baptist College.   Dr. Crowell has distinguished himself by growing each of the churches in which he has served as pastor and by promoting mission service from the membership in his churches. Dr. Paul Lionel Crowell has also distinguished himself as an untiring civic leader serving his Lord in a multitude of capacities in the communities where he has lived. Dr. Crowell is married to Mary Alice Turner, a 1954 graduate of Louisiana College.  They are the devoted parents of two daughters, Deborah Lynn Crowell Fleming and Lola Ione Crowell Black, and are the loving grandparents of seven.

For these reasons, Louisiana College and the Alumni Association proudly issue this citation and honor Dr. Paul Lionel Crowell as Distinguished Alumnus in the year 2007.