LRU News

Diverse and Experienced Group Named as Newest Members of the LRU Board of Trustees

Fri Aug 23 2013

HICKORY, N.C. — Lenoir-Rhyne University is pleased to announce the newest members of the Board of Trustees.

George A. Moretz has retired from day-to-day activities but currently serves as  chairman of the board and secretary of Carolina Mills, Inc. and as president of the Moretz Family Foundation. He graduated from N.C. State with a Textile Management degree in 1964. Thisisn’t his first time on L-R’s board of trustees – Moretz has already spent 18 years on the board beginning in 1993. As president of his family foundation, he has been a major supporter of L-R’s capital campaigns over the years including the current one – and he’s supported scholarship and professorship funds at the university.

Moretz has a long history of being active in his community. He was a leader of L-R’s Piedmont Educational Foundation and was a charter member of the Business Council. He has also served on boards including: the Piedmont Council BSA, Catawba Valley Community Foundation, Sipe’s Orchard Home, Chamber of Commerce, United Way, Frye Regional Medical Center, Newton-Conover Rotary Club, YMCA of Catawba Valley, the Hickory Board of Wachovia, the Greater Hickory Cooperative Christian Ministry and the Catawba Science Center. He and his wife, Carolyn, are members of Holy Trinity Lutheran Church in Hickory. They have three adult children.

C. Cliff Ritchie ’76 is the great-grandson of Cheerwine’s Founder, L.D. Peeler, and serves as president and chief executive officer of Cheerwine Bottling and Carolina Beverage Corporation in Salisbury, N.C. For years Cheerwine was only available in and around its home state, but now is available throughout the Southeast. The recent growth has put Cheerwine closer to its goal of nationwide distribution in time for the company’s 100th anniversary in 2017.

Ritchie graduated from Lenoir-Rhyne with a degree in business administration. His community involvement includes serving on boards such as: L-R’s Board of Visitors, American Beverage Association, N.C. Beverage Association (president), Wachovia Bank, Rowan County United Way, Rowan Friends of Scouting Campaign (chair), Rowan Little League (president), Salisbury Foundation of the Carolinas and Rowan Rotary Club. Ritchie is also a member of the L-R President’s and Founders Societies and a PEF supporter.

In 2010 Ritchie was inducted into the World Beverage Hall of Fame. He and his wife, Amy, are members of St. John’s Lutheran Church in Salisbury. They have three children.

Sybil Baird Stewart ’58, studied math and French at Lenoir-Rhyne and went on to teach math at Fred T. Foard and Newton-Conover high schools in Catawba County just down the road from her alma matter. After she retired from the school system Stewart got her real estate license and sold property for Jim Isenhower in Newton, N.C. Then shebought the Smart Shoppe in Conover, NC and ran the ladies dress store for eight years.

For more than 30 years Stewart has served area churches as a substitute pianist and organist. She’s also a long-time supporter of Baptist Children’s Homes of North Carolina. And she’s a member of the Catawba County Board of Planning and Development.

Her volunteer work includes serving on L-R’s Board of Visitors, L-R’s Capital Campaign – Event Logistics Committee, and N.C. Baptist Children’s Homes Board (chair). A longtime supporter of Catawba Valley Medical Center, she serves on the Catawba Medical FoundationBoard, which raises money to support CVMC, and is a member of Women in Philanthropy, a giving group affiliated with the Foundation. She is a member of the L-R President’s and Founders societies.

Stewart is the widow of former Catawba County Commissioner David L. Stewart. The couple was married for 56 years.

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