four people with their hand raised
Beaufort County Clerk of Court Marty Paramore swears in new trustees Elizabeth Bowen, Natalie Wayne, Tina Eakes, and Julius Walker Jr.

Beaufort CCC Board of Trustees Expands to Seventeen Members

Four new members joined the Beaufort County Community College Board of Trustees on February 13. Three trustees were added to the board to expand representation to more counties in the college’s service area due to new legislation. Tina Eakes and Natalie Wayne will represent Hyde County, and Julius Walker, Jr., increases representation for Washington County. Elizabeth Bowen joined as the new Student Government Association (SGA) representative, an ex officio, non-voting member. As a result, the Beaufort CCC Board of Trustees now stands at 17 members.

The North Carolina budget passed by the General Assembly on September 22, 2023, included language that expanded local college board representation to any county that provides plant funds to the local community college. In the case of Beaufort CCC, Hyde County donates use of the Hyde Davis Center in Engelhard and Washington County donates use of Washington County Center in Roper, granting them to two representatives each. In the case of Washington County, Linda West will continue to serve in an existing, dedicated Washington County position that came about when the college consolidated post-secondary services for the county.

Tina Eakes has worked as an insurance agent for the North Carolina Farm Bureau at the Hyde County office since 1996. The Fairfield resident attended Mattamuskeet High School, and her son Payton is a recent graduate of Beaufort CCC’s Inner Banks Fire Academy, while her son Cruz is a graduate of East Carolina University.

Natalie Berry Wayne is the Hyde County Cooperative Extension Director. The Engelhard resident has worked at the Cooperative Extension since 2004 before which she worked as a physical education teacher at Mattamuskeet Elementary for two years. She earned a master’s degree from North Carolina State University. She is the wife of Robert Wayne and the mother of two children, Brayden and Lear. She has collaborated with Beaufort CCC’s Hyde-Davis Center through partnerships with Hyde County 4-H agriculture and family consumers sciences programming.

Julius Walker, Jr., retired as the superintendent of Washington County Schools in 2009. The Roper resident served as an interim superintendent for Bertie County Schools, twice for Hertford County Schools, and once for Washington County Schools. He started as a teacher for Washington County Schools in 1967. Throughout his career, he also worked as a teacher-coach, elementary school principal, middle school principal, high school principal, and assistant superintendent. He holds a Master of Art from North Carolina Central University. He was honored as North Carolina Outstanding Educator by Gov. Roy Cooper in 2020 and serves on the Washington County Board of Commissioners spearheading construction of a new K-12 school. Many students from Washington County Schools either attend Beaufort CCC after graduation or through the Washington County Early College High School. He is the husband of Katie Walker; the father of Shawn Walker, Sr., and Kendra Walker Powell; and the grandfather of Mackenzie Powell, Ian Powell, and Shawn Walker, Jr.

Elizabeth Bowen is a Washington resident and a dual-enrolled student at Beaufort County Early College High School. She volunteers with the Prom Committee, Sound Rivers, and Ark with a Spark. She is the Student Government Association president and Gamma Beta Phi vice president. She is the daughter of Stephanie Alligood. She plans to earn her bachelor’s degree in business at East Carolina University.

Beaufort CCC president Dr. Dave Loope stated that “we are indeed pleased to welcome these representatives from Hyde and Washington Counties to our board of trustees. Their presence will certainly enable the college to better serve the citizens of our entire service region.”