Published on May 15, 2012 by Philip Poole  

Five Samford University graduates will receive 2012 alumni honors during homecoming festivities Oct. 12-13. 

Alumni of the year include: 

Kerry Gossett '73, owner of Anesthesia Resources Management LLC in Birmingham. Gossett also is a 1982 graduate of the nurse anesthesia program. He is a member of the Ida V. Moffett School of Nursing advisory board and has been instrumental in fundraising for several nursing school projects. Most recently, he led an effort to raise funds for the simulation center operating room to be named for former nurse anesthesia program director Lonnie W. Funderburg and his wife, Mary. 

James Huskey '69, a career diplomat with the U.S. State Department and now based in Washington, D.C. Huskey, who received a Samford degree in history, served embassies in China, Liberia and Lebanon. He was a top U.S. official during the Tiananmen Square uprisings in 1989 and in Beirut when the U.S. embassy there was bombed in 1983. He earned a doctorate in history from the University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill.

MaryAnn Buffington Moon '76, a teacher at Huntsville (Ala.) High School. She was named the secondary teacher of the year in 2009-10 by the Alabama state Parent-Teacher Association. Moon and her husband, Rick, have supported scholarships and other projects at Samford and are active members of the Bulldog Club. Moon earned her Samford degree in history and has a master's degree from Alabama A & M University. 

Rickie D. Moon '77, an environmental scientist for Teledyne Brown Engineering in Huntsville, Ala. Moon earned undergraduate degrees in mathematics and chemistry and the master of science in environmental management in 1997. He and his wife, MaryAnn, are active volunteers with both the Samford Alumni and Parent Associations and have hosted numerous Samford events in their home. 

The Moons will be the fifth alumni couple to be honored.

Alumnus of the year is the highest honor the university and Samford Alumni Association bestow on graduates, according to David B. Goodwin, Samford's director of alumni programs. Nominees must have completed a Samford degree at least 10 years prior to selection and must be supportive of the university with advocacy, involvement and contributions.

Robert Patrick Devereux '05, will be honored as Outstanding Young Alumnus. Devereux is vice president for clinical operations and pharmacist with FMS Pharmacy in Bessemer, Ala. He is a preceptor for Samford's McWhorter School of Pharmacy and directs the FMS community pharmacy residency program. He recently received the 2012 Pharmacy Today One-to-One Patient Counseling Recognition from the American Pharmacists Association. 

The Outstanding Young Alumnus award began in 2009 as a way to recognize younger Samford graduates who already are making an impact in their fields and in their support of Samford, Goodwin said. 

All five honorees will be recognized at the annual homecoming gala on Oct. 12 and at other events throughout the weekend. Full profiles of each will be featured in the fall issue of Seasons magazine.


Samford is a leading Christian university offering undergraduate programs grounded in the liberal arts with an array of nationally recognized graduate and professional schools. Founded in 1841, Samford is the 87th-oldest institution of higher learning in the United States. Samford enrolls 5,791 students from 49 states, Puerto Rico and 16 countries in its 10 academic schools: arts, arts and sciences, business, divinity, education, health professions, law, nursing, pharmacy and public health. Samford fields 17 athletic teams that compete in the tradition-rich Southern Conference and ranks 6th nationally for its Graduation Success Rate among all NCAA Division I schools.