Fred Webb honored with creation of scholarship endowment

Date posted: July 29, 2010

Photo available on request, please contact Terri Leith, 919-513-3119 or terri_leith@ncsu.edu

Media contact: Benny Suggs, N.C. State University Alumni Association Executive Director, 919-515-3375 or benny_suggs@ncsu.edu; Keith Oakley, Executive Director for College Advancement, College of Agriculture and Life Sciences, N. C. State University, 919-515-9262 or keith_oakley@ncsu.edu

The family of the late J. Fred Webb Jr., a well-known Greenville businessman, has established an endowment at North Carolina State University that will provide scholarships for students who are studying in a traditional agricultural department in N.C. State’s College of Agriculture and Life Sciences.

The James Fred Webb Jr.-John T. Caldwell Alumni Scholarship Endowment will provide scholarships for the Alumni Caldwell Fellows Program at N.C. State. Webb’s wife, Nell, along with his children and grandchildren, attended a luncheon July 14 with university representatives prior to a ceremony creating the endowment.

Among those attending the luncheon were N.C. State Chancellor Randy Woodson; Dr. Barbara Kirby, College of Agriculture and Life Sciences associate director and director of the N.C. State Agricultural Institute; N.C. State Alumni Association Executive Director Benny Suggs; Lawrence Davenport, chairman of the N.C. State Board of Trustees; former N.C. State trustee Bob Mattocks; Bonner Gaylord, Raleigh city councilman and Webb’s grandson; and Lloyd Horton, close friend of the Webb family.

Another special guest was Caroline Yopp, a rising sophomore in agricultural education and communications from Dunn, who is the first recipient of the new Webb-Caldwell scholarship.

“I feel so blessed to have this opportunity,” Yopp said. “They wanted [a scholarship recipient] with an interest or background in agriculture. It’s a great way to live and grow up.”

“We’re very grateful to the family for this endowment, part of the Caldwell Scholars program, which is the original and oldest merit program at N.C. State,” said Chancellor Woodson. “Named for former Chancellor John T. Caldwell, someone who meant so much to this institution, the Caldwell Scholars were created to honor his legacy and carry out his spirit and ideals.”

Webb, an Edgecombe County native, was a 1939 N.C. State graduate with a degree in agriculture. After service in World War II, he began his career in the grain business and soon launched an agricultural commodity merchant company, Fred Webb Inc., in Greenville. The company, with subsidiaries in cotton and agricultural land businesses, became the largest private grain dealer on the east coast, with more than 50 locations in North Carolina, Virginia and Maryland. His company twice was honored as one of North Carolina’s Top 100 Companies. Webb was the charter president of the N.C. Grain Dealers Association and served on the board of the National Grain Dealers Association.

“N.C. State University prepared my dad for the business world, and he had a deep appreciation for that,” said Dr. Rick Webb of Greenville, whose son, Tom, is a current N.C. State student in agricultural and resource economics. “It is an honor for our family to be here… My dad’s love for N.C. State had no bounds.”

Written by: Terri Leith, 919-513-3119 or terri_leith@ncsu.edu

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