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King University News :: Boatright and Roberts Receive 40 Under Forty Award

Kathi Boatright and Dr. Matt Roberts of King University were honored by the Business Journal of Tri-Cities Tennessee/Virginia during their annual 40 Under Forty award gala held on Oct. 4.  The Business Journal has been honoring the region’s top young business professionals each year since 1993. 

The 40 Under Forty award recipients are 39 years of age or younger, live and work in East Tennessee or Southwest Virginia, are involved in their communities and show the potential to be a leader in the business community during the next decade. 

“It’s an honor, and a surprise, to have been selected for the Business Journal’s 40 Under Forty,” commented Boatright. “I’m especially grateful to have been nominated by my colleagues for this award. I’m humbled by their belief in me and the work that I do.”

Kathi Boatright serves as grants coordinator for King University.  An integral member of King’s Development team, Boatright has been instrumental in securing grant funding for the University.  She received her Bachelor of Arts in Geography and Mass Communications cum laude in 2005 from Emory Henry College and her Master of Science in Geography summa cum laude in 2008 from The University of Southern Mississippi.

“I greatly appreciate being named as one of this year's recipients for The Business Journal’s 40 Under Forty award,” said Dr. Roberts. “As a native of the Tri-Cities, I am thrilled to be part of a group that is identified as having a positive impact on the economic well-being of our region.”

Currently, Dr. Roberts serves King University as chief academic officer and dean of Academic Affairs. Previously, Dr. Matt Roberts advised the School of Education’s Student Service Organization, provided leadership for King’s Quality Enhancement Plan, and served as associate dean of Teaching and Educational Development from 2010-2012.

Dr. Roberts is a 1997 graduate of East Tennessee State University.  He received his Master of Arts in Applied English Linguistics in 2000 from the University of Houston.  After teaching English as a second language, composition, and English literature in high schools and community colleges in Texas, he returned to Central Appalachia to pursue doctoral studies at Appalachian State University. In 2008, Matthew received his Ed.D. in Educational Leadership with concentrations in language and literacy education. His doctoral research involved collaboration with 10 elementary and middle schools promoting family literacy initiatives and oral history publications for underserved populations in the mountains of North Carolina.  In 2007, he was awarded ASU’s prestigious Cratis D. Williams Alumni Fellowship for his contributions to rural education in Western North Carolina.

Other King University recipients of the 40 Under Forty designation include LeAnn Hughes, vice president of marketing, market research, and special assistant to the president; Jim Donahue, vice president for business operations and chief financial officer; Matt Peltier, dean of Students; Micah Crews, associate vice president for enrollment management; Greg King, assistant vice president for enrollment management; and Sarah Clevinger, director of marketing and communications. 


King University is a Presbyterian, master's-level comprehensive university.  Founded in 1867 as King College, the University offers more than 90 majors, minors, pre-professional degrees and concentrations in fields such as business, nursing, law, medical and health sciences, pharmacy, education, and humanities.  Graduate programs are offered in business administration, education, and nursing.  A number of research, off-campus learning opportunities, and travel destinations are also available.  King University is a NCAA Division II and a Conference Carolinas member with 25 varsity athletic teams.  For more information about King University, visit  King University does not discriminate against academically qualified students of any race, color, national or ethnic origin, sex, age, or disability.  King University is certified by SCHEV to operate locations in Virginia.  For more information, contact the King University office at Southwest Virginia Community College, 309 College Road, Richlands, VA 24641.