Pearl River Foundation Board welcomes two members and new chair

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Submitted by loneill on July 19, 2022 – 2:25pm

The Pearl River Community College Development Foundation Inc. Board of Directors is set for the 2022-23 school year.

Blaine LaFontaine and Traci Comesana-Spence are joining the board and Mrs. Glenda Floyde Robbins has been named the new Board Chair.

John Clearman served as Board Chair for 2020-2022. 

Delana Harris presents outgoing Board Chair, John Clearman, with a gift of appreciation.
Delana Harris presents outgoing Board Chair, John Clearman, with a gift of appreciation.

The Development Foundation is a clearinghouse for all private funds to Pearl River Community College and is responsible for coordinating all fundraising endeavors and solicitation efforts whether through written, personal, or telephone contact. The Board of Directors approves the use of unrestricted donations to fund priority goals on campus as recommended by the PRCC Administration.  

“The Board of Directors for the Foundation is comprised of business professionals, educators, and community leaders from across our six-county district,” said Executive Director of Development Foundation/Alumni Association, Delana Harris. “They each provide leadership and experience that is valuable to our Foundation and College.   

“The Board is comprised of alumni that have a special passion for ensuring the continual growth for PRCC through scholarship support for the next generation of Wildcats. I am grateful for the guidance and mentoring that each of these members provide.”  

Glenda Floyde Robbins
Glenda Floyde Robbins

Robbins attended PRCC from 1963-1965 and then transferred to The University of Southern Mississippi where she earned a degree in elementary education in 1967 and a master’s degree in 1976.

She taught at Bassfield, Columbia Academy, and the Jefferson Davis Vocational School before retiring in 2006.

She met her husband, the late Donald K. Robbins, at PRCC and enjoyed 47 years of marriage. The family includes their son, Dr. Brett Robbins, his wife Tisha, and two grandsons, Sterling and Saxon. She established the Donald K. Robbins Scholarship in her husband’s honor.   

She has been a member of the Development Foundation board for several years and has been active with the Marion / Jeff Davis Alumni Chapter. Robbins was selected as the 2018 Alumnus of the Year for PRCC.  

NEW BOARD OF DIRECTORS MEMBERS

Blaine LaFontaine
Blaine LaFontaine

LaFontaine is COO/Port Director of Hancock County Port & Harbor Commission and a resident of Kiln.

He is a former councilman for the City of Diamondhead, former President of Hancock County Board of Supervisors, and past Economic Development Director for Pearl River County. He is a graduate of Leadership Hancock County, Gulf Coast Business Council Master’s Program and Leadership Mississippi.

He is a graduate of The University of Southern Mississippi where he obtained his Bachelor of Science in Industrial Engineering Technology and Master of Science in Economic Development.

He has also received recognition as a recipient of the Gulf Coast Chambers Top 10 under 40 award, Mississippi Economic Council’s Top 50 Under 40 award and serves on the MS Gulf Coast Regional Tourism board. The Hancock County Port and Harbor Commission recently appointed Blaine LaFontaine as CEO/Executive Director, effective Jan. 1, 2023.  

Traci Comesana-Spence
Traci Comesana-Spence

Comesana-Spence is an alumnus of PRCC, both as a student as well as an employee. She graduated with her associate’s degree in May 2005, going on to graduate from Louisiana State University in Business Marketing.

She found her way back to PRCC after her daughter was born in 2015 to work as the Alumni Coordinator in the Development Foundation. She believes in what the foundation stands for and loves being part of an organization that helps students further their education.

Comesana-Spence is married to her high school sweetheart, Josh, and they have two beautiful children, Journi and Asher, and an adorable fur babe, Nola.

She believes that life is full of opportunities for growth and never-ending learning and that she possibly grew even more as an employee at The River than she did as a student. That growth led her to challenge herself to start her own business in Real Estate, leaving the college as an employee in November 2021. She is now a full-time Realtor.   

HOW TO START A SCHOLARSHIP FUND 

Anyone interested in starting a scholarship fund can start the process through an online form at prcc.edu/alumni/scholarship.  The scholarship can be named and have specific criteria for the eligibility of students for the award.  

The Development Foundation also accepts donations to help fund programs and scholarships, including the Market and Station which assists students with professional clothing and food needs.   

Questions about the process can be directed to Harris at dharris@prcc.edu

For the latest news on Pearl River Community College, visit PRCC.edu and follow us on Twitter (@PRCC_Wildcats), Instagram (PRCCWILDCATS), and Facebook (@PRCCMKTG).