3 alumni earn Power 100 awards

In Main Alumni Post, News by KHarrington

Nigel Alson

Leon Gatewood


SALISBURY – During a star-studded event, three Livingstone College alumni, including the current president, were honored among the Black Business Ink Power 100.

Livingstone President Dr. Anthony J. Davis; Livingstone College Board of Trustee member Nigel Alston; and Class of 1980’s Leon Gatewood, representing his nonprofit organization, each received the Power 100 Award on June 8 at the Steven Tanger Center for the Performing Arts in Greensboro.

The Power 100 list was comprised of honorees from 28 cities and towns throughout the state and included 90 individuals and 10 organizations. The honorees, selected based on nominations, were chosen because of their leadership and impact inside their organization, community or both, said Richard Williams, founder, publisher and chairman of Black Business Ink.

The event was in celebration of the 20th anniversary of Black Business Ink, a magazine dedicated to African-American businesses across the state.

Davis, the 13th president of Livingstone College, is the first alumnus in 25 years to lead the historically black college in Salisbury. Prior to his election as president, he served as senior vice president and chief operating officer of Livingstone, leading the college through the pandemic with extensive and efficient protocols that led the college to reopen before some of its peer institutions.

Davis is a foster care survivor and has designated Livingstone as the Center for Aging Out, offering educational opportunities for foster care students interested in attending college.

“Livingstone College has supported Black Business Ink since its inception as a premier medium of communications for black entrepreneurs and businesses, and we congratulate Richard Williams for his consistent professionalism in delivering a quality magazine each month,” said Davis. “We are also excited about his new publication, HBCU Matters, which lends voice to the powerful influence of historically black colleges in the nation.”

Alston is a motivational speaker, Dale Carnegie trainer, meeting facilitator, retreat leader and columnist. He serves as the executive director of the North Carolina Black Repertory Company, producers of the National Black Theatre Festival in Winston-Salem.

In 2002, he received the Emory O. Jackson Best Column writing award from the National Newspaper Publishers Association for his column written on September 11, 2001: Today, I Cried.

Gatewood is the founder and CEO of HOLLA! (Helping Our Loved ones Learn and Achieve) of Anson County, NC. The organization is a grassroots organization founded in 2005 in Anson County to address low achievement among black males in its local school system.

Its vision was inspired by the story of the mighty Maasai Tribe of East Africa. The elders of the tribe are known for asking themselves at the start of each day, “And how are the children?” Services include mentoring/tutoring, a tennis program, annual summer camps, youth advocacy and theater arts.

The State of Black North Carolina Conference was first held in 2003 in Winston-Salem and is usually a two or three-day event. This year, the conference was fused into the one-day Power 100 20th Anniversary Awards Ceremony.

Among the honorees were Gene A. Woods, president and CEO of Atrium Health; Billy Williams, vice president of Food Lion LLC; Fred Whitfield, COO of the Charlotte Hornets; Dr. Harold Martin, chancellor of A&T State University; Dr. Elwood Robinson, chancellor of Winston-Salem State University; the Hon. Henry Frye, retired Chief Justice of the N.C. Supreme Court, and his wife Shirley Frye, High Point University Board of Trustees; and various judges, pastors and business leaders.