CHAPEL HILL— The State Awards are designed to recognize those who have done the most for high school athletics in the state rather than a single accomplishment or having an outstanding win-loss record. The awards are named in memory or honor of outstanding individuals in each category, seven of whom are in the NCHSAA Hall of Fame.
2022 Winner Information
DORIS HOWARD FEMALE COACH OF THE YEAR – Joan Mabe, Chapel Hill High School
After an All-American career in cross country, indoor and outdoor track at UNC, Joan Nesbitt Mabe became a distance coach for men and women at UNC-Chapel Hill coaching numerous ACC Champions and NCAA All-Americans. She returned to coaching after a short break while raising a family, she returned to coaching at the high school ranks at Chapel Hill High School, coaching both cross country and track for men and women’s teams at the school. She is credited with helping hundreds of students to catch the “running bug.”
An Olympian herself, in 1996, she realized that she could make a huge impact in the lives of students in the high school level, believing she could make a bigger difference in students’ lives while they were in high school. In almost 10 years leading the programs at Chapel Hill High, Coach Mabe has trained teams to seven team State Championships, three each in men’s and women’s cross country, and another in women’s indoor track. She has also helped many individuals to the top spot in distance disciplines.
HARVEY REID MALE COACH OF THE YEAR – Ronald Vincent, J.H. Rose High School
Ronald Vincent has been a Pitt County resident his entire life, attending Pitt County Schools and graduating from Rose High School in 1965 where he played football and baseball. He then attended East Carolina University from 1965-1969 and played football for the Pirates in 1966 and 1967. This year he began his 53rd year of coaching baseball for Pitt County Schools.
Coach Vincent has also coached football over 30 years at Rose High School and Farmville Central High School and has also coached basketball and wrestling. He taught at Farmville Central High School from 1969-1973 and Rose High School from 1973-2009. He holds the most wins for a high school baseball coach in North Carolina history with 985 wins which includes 7 state championships in baseball (1975, 1997, 1999, 2003, 2004, 2008 and 2021). Vincent was also an assistant football coach on 5 state championship teams (1975, 2003, 2004, 2005, 2006). Each summer he enjoys hosting many baseball camps for the City of Greenville and has done so for over 40 years. He has been on the Greenville Babe Ruth Board of Directors since 1977 and has served as the District Commissioner for Boy Scouts.
DAVE HARRIS ATHLETIC DIRECTOR OF THE YEAR – Colin Fegeley, Green Level High School
Colin Fegeley, CMAA, M.Ed received his Bachelor’s Degree in History from North Carolina State University and his Master’s Degree in Education from the University of Pennsylvania. He began his professional career in 2007 as an English Teacher and Football Coach at Olney High School in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. In 2009, he returned to North Carolina to continue his teaching and coaching career. Prior to being named the 1st Athletic Director at Green Level High School, Fegeley served as Athletic Director at Green Hope High School from 2014-2019. During his tenure at Green Hope, he helped guide the athletic program 9 consecutive NCHSAA 4A Wells Fargo Cups and was part of 17 state championships.
Fegeley is a member of the National Interscholastic Athletic Administrators Association and serves as vice president on North Carolina Athletic Directors Association (NCADA) Board of Directors. He earned his Certified Master Athletic Administrator (CMAA) designation in January 2020. He was named the 2022 NCADA Athletic Director of the Year. When not at work, Colin enjoys traveling, boating, and spending time with family, especially his wife Michelle and two boys, Jackson and Corbin.
BOB DEATON PRINCIPAL OF THE YEAR – Jason Suggs, St. Pauls High School
Jason Suggs is the principal of St. Pauls High School and has served as principal since 2015. He is an alumnus of the school and has been pleased to preside over seven years of academic and athletic growth at the school. Even with the cloud of COVID altering high school athletics, St. Pauls High has been deep in the playoffs in many sports. The Bulldogs made Regional appearances in boys and girls basketball and the school’s first appearance in the state title game in football.
Suggs praised the string of athletic successes and said it displays the hard work and dedication of the faculty, staff, and students. Prior to being named principal of St. Pauls High, he served as the Public Schools of Robeson County District Athletic Director, principal of Fairmont High and assistant principal and teacher at Lumberton High.
BOB MCRAE SUPERINTENDENT OF THE YEAR – Cathy Moore, Wake County Public School System
Cathy Moore became the Wake County Public School System’s tenth superintendent when she took the position in May 2018. She leads the nation’s 15th largest school system overseeing programs for 160,000 students and 19,000 school employees. Moore was recently named the National Superintendent of the Year by Magnet Schools of America.
Moore was appointed to the Wake County Schools’ position as a Deputy Superintendent for Academic Advancement. She has served in numerous capacities within public schools, including time as an area superintendent, high school principal, and assistant principal. She began her career as a high school French teacher in the Nash-Rocky Mount Public School System. Moore currently serves on the Board of Directors for the NCHSAA.
TIM STEVENS MEDIA REPRESENTATIVE OF THE YEAR – J. Mike Blake, HighSchoolOT.com
J. Mike Blake is a graduate of Western Harnett High School and NC State University who has a long history of covering high school sports in the Triangle and much of the eastern half of the state. Blake currently contributes to HighSchoolOT.com after a ten year career with McClatchy that saw him rise to become the high school sports editor at The News & Observer and The Herald Sun.
Blake has won 14 NC Press Association Awards and is the only two-time winner of the NC Soccer Coaches Association’s Media Person of the Year Award. He currently teaches at Cardinal Gibbons High School, now in his fourth year teaching American literature and public speaking. He has also helped many students get hands-on experience covering sports for many of the school’s social media platforms. Blake has always been concerned about preserving history of schools’ athletic accomplishments, and telling the stories of the special communities from all across the state. He is the brains behind @RecordsWatchNC on Twitter and has been to 219 schools across the state to cover an event or during his playing career while at Western Harnett.
ELTON HAWLEY ATHLETIC TRAINER OF THE YEAR – Emily Gaddy, Orange High School
Emily Gaddy has served as an athletic trainer in NCHSAA member schools since 2011 when she served as an Outreach Athletic Trainer at Wheatmore High in association with High Point Orthopedics for a year. In 2012, she joined Orange High School as an athletic trainer and teacher and has served the students at Orange ever since. Gaddy is a product of Campbell University and UNC Greensboro and has served on the NCHSAA’s Sports Medicine Advisory Committee since 2020. She is also active in the NC Athletic Trainers’ Association, serving as Chair of the group’s Practice Settings Committee and as a member of the Secondary Schools Committee in 2017-2018.
For the last six years, Gaddy has been a member of the NCHSAA and NCATA’s joint EAP Review Committee. She has been active in the research community as well, working with studies to better understand the role of Rehabilitation in Concussion Management, Risk minimization teaching techniques and numerous other courses of study. Gaddy has been awarded the NCHSAA’s LifeSaver Citation in 2018 and the Orange County Schools Employee Excellence Award in 2016. She was the NCATA’s Athletic Trainer of the Year in 2018 and a finalist for Training and Conditioning’s Most Valuable Athletic Trainer in 2017.
DR. TIM TAFT MEDICAL PROFESSIONAL OF THE YEAR – Dr. Rick McBurney, Hudson Primary Care
Dr. Rick McBurney is the owner and CEO of Hudson Primary Care, serving approximately 3000 residents and seeing 25-35 patients per day, from infants to the elderly, in rural North Carolina. He has been a staple in the Western North Carolina medical community for many years, serving patients at Frye Regional Medical Center in Hickory, Caldwell Memorial Hospital, Watauga Regional Medical Center, Valdese Hospital and Catawba Valley Regional Medical Center. He is a former President of Caldwell County Medical Society and prior Chief of the Department of Family Medicine at UNC Caldwell Memorial Hospital.
McBurney has served as a physician since 1988, but has truly invested himself in the coverage of athletic events for many years. He has served as a member of the on-site Physicians at the NCHSAA State Wrestling Tournament since 2000, helping assess, stabilize, and treat injuries for participants for 22 years. He has also provided medical coverage for Wendy’s Meets, the NCHSAA State Cross Country Championship Meet, and has served at the Southeastern Division of the Footlocker 5K Cross Country Track Meet in Charlotte since 1995. In his spare time, he enjoys flying his own small plane, skiing, and teaching Bible Drill at his local church.