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Fowler Family Establishes Scholarship at Catawba College

February 15, 2005

Category: Academics, Alumni


Newton and Nancy Fowler of Concord and members of their family have made a gift to Catawba College to establish the Fowler Family Endowed Scholarship Fund.   The scholarship will be awarded annually to a student athlete who maintains a 2.75 grade point while majoring in teacher education.

Other members of the Fowler family who participated in establishing the scholarship include Dr. Ed Fowler and wife Christina Daugherty Fowler of Greenwood, S.C., both 1985 alumni of Catawba College, and Mark and Margaret Fowler Porter of Concord.

“My son and I both attended college on athletic scholarships and know what it means to a person to be able to have this kind of assistance,” explained Newton Fowler, the family patriarch who has served on the Catawba College Board of Trustees since 1996.   “Ed went to Catawba on an athletic and academic scholarship and played basketball for Coach Sam Moir.   And, he did quite well there.   He served as captain of the basketball team, was All-Conference, and in his junior and senior years was Academic All-American.   During his senior year, he was the recipient of both the Kirkland and Whitener awards, and in 2002, he was inducted into the Catawba College Sports Hall of Fame.

“Our family decided we wanted to do something long-lasting for Catawba which would impact the lives of future students,” Fowler continued. “It seemed appropriate that our gift would take the form of a scholarship.”

Catawba College Senior Vice President Tom Childress called the new scholarship “an investment in the lives of deserving young people.”   He lauded the Fowler family for their strong track record of support to Catawba through the years.

Newton and Nancy Fowler are active in Catawba’s Chiefs Club and have consistently supported the College in various capital efforts.   Fowler chaired the Campaign for Catawba between 1997 and 2002, which raised $59.6 million to use for infrastructure improvements, building upgrades and renovations, and new facilities upgrades.   The Fowler Athletic Office Complex in the Hayes Field House on campus is named in his honor. During the mid-1990s, he also spearheaded an effort to raise funds to upgrade the John Coble Training Room in the Abernethy Physical Education Center on campus.

Newton Fowler, a native of Mt. Airy, was employed for Philip Morris for 38 years before retiring in 1993 as general manager of Philip Morris’ Concord manufacturing center.   He holds both his bachelor’s and master’s degrees from the University of Richmond.   He received an honorary doctorate of humanitarian service degree from Catawba in 1995.   He has served on numerous boards, including the board of the N.C. School of Science and Mathematics, the UNC-Charlotte Board of Visitors, the N.C. Secretary of State’s Foundation for Good Business, all of which he has chaired, and the Cabarrus County Agricultural Fair Board.

A native of Arlington, Va., Nancy Fling Fowler earned her undergraduate degree in sociology from the University of Richmond, where she met her husband.   She was the first woman in Chesterfield County, Virginia to be nominated to run for a post on the school board and was a member of the James River Women’s Club of Richmond, also serving as its president.   She was a member of the founding committee of Hospice of Cabarrus County and served as a volunteer for Meals on Wheels in Cabarrus County for over 15 years.

The Fowlers’ daughter, Margaret Porter, holds a master’s degree in adaptive physical education and is a physical education teacher in the Cabarrus County Schools.   The Fowlers have four grandsons, two are children of Margaret and Mark Porter and two are children of Ed and Christina Fowler, and all of whom are following in the family footsteps as athletes.

Endowed scholarships at Catawba are established with gifts of $10,000 or more.