WPU Unveils Newly Renovated Main Lobby

Aug 23, 2019

On August 15, 2019, WPU unveiled Main Lobby to attending alumni, faculty & staff, Trustees and friends in celebration of the newly completed renovations in time to kick off the 2019-20 school year. These renovations are apart of the Distinctive Identity theme of WPU’s Believe in Peace Strategic Plan and were completed in an effort to best and boldly communicate the superior Peace experience.

The renovations consist of creating an interactive display highlighting profiles of campus leaders and a full Peace history timeline, installing the official William Peace University Seal, constructing a wall art piece that doubles as a physical campus timeline, and executing overall facilities-centric improvements in the space. Amongst these overall improvements included the creation of an Art Gallery in the hallway adjacent to the lobby including the photography of Jacob Warren, and at its center, an expansive line drawing of Main and the surrounding buildings by Jerry Miller, husband of alumna Jean Castleberry Miller ’55.

“When people come to Main now, with all of these renovations, I want them to inspire curiosity. Curiosity and pride. I want people to say, ‘Wow! This is quite the institution. What else have they done?’. I want to make a fantastic first impression.” 

Nonnie Peace Dillehay ’76

Pictured: President Ralph, Nonnie Dillehay, Vice President of University Advancement Jodi Stamey, Barry Dillehay.

The updated space made its debut last Thursday at the WPU Main Lobby Dedication Event, featuring a presentation and dedication of the space followed by a light cocktail hour in Main Lobby.

The reception honored all of the hard work and dedication from our Peace community that made this space possible, specifically recognizing Barry and Yvonne “Nonnie” Peace Dillehay ‘76 whose generous contribution supported the renovation efforts. The Dillehay’s, longtime advocates and loyal supporters of Peace, were asked to be a part of the revitalization efforts in 2017 by President Ralph and Vice President for University Advancement, Jodi Stamey. They leaped at the opportunity and worked with campus leadership to discuss the new vision for the space and the impact that these changes would have on campus.

“When people come to Main now, with all of these renovations, I want them to inspire curiosity. Curiosity and pride. I want people to say, ‘Wow! This [William Peace University] is quite the institution. What else have they done?’” states Dillehay, “I want to make a fantastic first impression.”

Nonnie and Barry Dillehay have been dedicated supporters of Peace since Nonnie attended Peace in 1976 and fell in love with the College. Her time on campus allowed her to not only explore her namesake, with her being a descendant of William Peace but to form her own relationship with the school. Old Main has always had a special place in Dillehay’s heart, and when her husband, Barry, saw her passion for the project he pushed them to get involved.

“Barry was actually the more vocal of the two of us about doing this project if you can believe that!” laughed Dillehay. “He knows how much this place means to me, and he knew how important this project was. He has a close relationship with his own alma mater, formerly Atlantic Christian and now Barton College, and is currently serving on their Board of Trustees. Honestly, he said that this was a chance of a lifetime here at Peace and we couldn’t miss out.” (In the upcoming WPU “I” Report: Innovation, Immersion, and Inclusion, you can read more about Nonnie and Barry Dillehay’s involvement with Peace and the doors that their support have opened.)

These renovations are amongst the projects being tackled in accordance with the University’s strategic goals for the 2019 – 2020 school year, many of which are well already underway. The upcoming “I Report” highlights the influence that WPU has had on the community and explores the impact our University has had in the past year – something that we are incredibly proud to share.

To learn more about how your support is opening doors here at Peace please visit peace.edu/give today.

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