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Cumberland University names new Trustees

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Cumberland University has named three new members to its board of trust - André L. Churchwell, M.D., the senior associate dean for diversity affairs at Vanderbilt University Medical School; Michael Spalding, M.D., a retired urologist and the current president of Equal Chance for Education; and Wayne Starks, a CU alumnus and owner of MedPro Staffing and B/V Investments.

"These additions to the board of trust strengthen our commitment to providing a quality education to Cumberland students," Bob McDonald, chairman of the CU Board of Trust and president/CEO of CedarStone Bank, said. "The experiences and insight these three gentlemen bring to the board will be invaluable, and I look forward to serving with them."

"We are pleased to welcome our new trustees to Cumberland," CU President Dr. Harvill Eaton added.

"Their professional careers and actions as community leaders have shown their understanding of the game-changing role that higher education has on lives, and we are honored to have them join our board."

Churchwell is a professor of medicine (cardiology), professor of radiology and radiological sciences, professor of biomedical engineering and senior associate dean for diversity affairs at Vanderbilt University School of Medicine. He was named the 2005 Walter R. Murray Jr. Distinguished Alumnus by the Association of Vanderbilt Black Alumni. The award recognizes lifetime achievements in personal, professional and community arenas.

Churchwell graduated from the Vanderbilt School of Engineering magna cum laude in 1975. He won the Biomedical Engineering Student Program Award that same year. He received his medical degree from Harvard Medical School in 1979 and later completed his internship, residency and cardiology fellowship at Emory University School of Medicine and affiliated hospitals in Atlanta. In addition, he was the first African-American chief medical resident at Grady Memorial Hospital.

A resident of Brentwood, Churchwell is married to Doreatha Henderson Churchwell, a nurse educator at Vanderbilt University Medical Center. They have two children, Crystal A. Churchwell and André L. Churchwell Jr.

Spalding is a retired surgeon and founder and president of Equal Chance for Education, a non-profit organization that serves college-bound students with excellent academic skills and financial need. The organization has supported scholars attending institutions across the Middle Tennessee region, including Cumberland University.

Spalding earned his medical degree from the University of Virginia and has served as chief of staff at Lebanon's University Medical Center. In 2014, he was a recipient of the Gail Kerr Hercules Award, an award created in memory of the late Gail Kerr that recognizes human relations leaders in Nashville. He also serves on a number of boards, including the Kidney Foundation of Middle Tennessee and the American Urological Association. He and his wife, Mary, are residents of Nashville.

A 1967 graduate of Cumberland, Starks is a native of White House. He is an active member of the Columbus, Ga. community - where he makes his home - and involved in several businesses ranging from real estate management to medical staffing. He has also served as a board member of the Columbus Chamber of Commerce. He and his wife have four children, seven grandchildren.

According to a statement issued by CU, the new board members have completed a trustee orientation and will commence their duties immediately.

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