Honorary Doctorate of Humanities degrees were conferred upon two significant benefactors of Lees-McRae College and current members of the College’s Board of Trustees, Dr. Edward E. Hood, Jr. and Dr. R. Edwin Shelton.
“The Honorary doctorate degree is the highest honor bestowed at Lees McRae College; a degree that is given in honor and recognition of distinguished service and dedication to higher education. Both Ed Hood and Ed Shelton have exemplified what true servant leadership looks like through their commitment to the College,” said Mr. Thomas H. Brigham, Jr., Chair of the Lees-McRae College Board of Trustees. “Because they have been so willing to give their time, talent, and treasures so generously, Lees- McRae is a better and stronger institution today. These gentlemen and their lovely wives are a true gift to Lees-McRae College, and we are so much better because of them.”
Dr. Edward E. Hood, Jr., received Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees in nuclear engineering from North Carolina State University. Mr. Hood served in the military as a United States Air Force officer from 1952 to 1956. He began his professional career working for the Garrett Corporation from 1956 to 1957. He joined General Electric Company in 1957 where he held several positions including vice president, group vice president, senior vice president and sector executive, vice chairman and executive officer, and member of the board of directors.
Dr. Hood was a trustee of Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute from 1980 to 1995 and a trustee of North Carolina State University from 1996 to 2004. He is a member of the National Academy of Engineering. Dr. Hood and his wife, Kay Transou Hood, reside in North Palm Beach, FL and Banner Elk.
Dr. R. Edwin “Ed” Shelton is co-owner of Shelton Vineyards, Inc., and a partner in The Shelton Companies, a private investment company located in Dobson, NC. He is an alumnus of Lees-McRae College, class of 1960, and an honorary alumnus of the class of 1995. In 2009, he and his wife, Dotti, were honored with the Founder’s Medal of Lees-McRae College. They reside in Dobson and Banner Elk.�
Dr. Shelton is an entrepreneur in every sense of the word. He and his brother, Charlie, co-founded companies including The Shelton Companies of Charlotte, Shelco, Inc., Fortis Homes, King Sash, Carolinas’ Distribution Services, and most recently, Shelton Vineyards in Dobson, NC. The award-winning Shelton Vineyards, opened in 1999, is the largest family-owned estate winery in North Carolina. Dr. Shelton was also inducted into the North Carolina Business Hall of Fame in 2007.
Dr. Shelton has served on The North Carolina Economic Development Board, North Carolina Citizens for Business and Industry, Board of Visitors for the Babcock School of Management at Wake Forest, Board of Trustees at Queens University and the Board of Directors of the Charlotte Chamber of Commerce, among others.