All Together One: The Spirit of JMU


By Taylor Hudson

A close-up photo of the All Together One plaque is on the JMU Commons.
The All Together One Award plaque on the Commons.  Picture by Evan White for JMU Technology and Design.

Please join us on April 15th to witness the ceremony and celebration as we honor the 2014 All Together One Award recipients:

  • S. Paige Hawkins
  • Dr. Debi Kipps-Vaughan
  • Dr. Reid Linn
  • Kevin Meaney
  • Dr. Robin Teske
  • Shelby Wiltz

The All Together One Award Ceremony will take place on Tuesday, April 15th, 2014 from 12pm to 1pm at the Commons (or Grafton-Stovall Theatre in case of inclement weater).

During President Rose’s inauguration address in 1999, the phrase “all together one” was born. “All together one” describes the atmosphere that JMU is well known for—an overwhelming sense of community. This sense of community is displayed all over campus—whether it is a random stranger holding a door, a professor staying on-campus beyond the typical work day to help a struggling student, or a housekeeper that greets every student with a smile. As a result, the All Together One Awards were created to recognize and thank the individuals who embody the spirit of community at JMU.

The All Together One awards are hosted and organized by JMU’s chapter of Omicron Delta Kappa, a National Leadership Honor Society. The first awards ceremony was held in the spring semester of 2000, and ODK has recognized superb members of the JMU community every year since.

Unlike other awards ceremonies held on campus, the All Together One Awards boast a unique difference: any one can nominate, and anyone can win. The nominators and awardees are not limited by any sort of organization, class, department or role on campus. “You can have anyone from a housekeeper or bus driver to an associate vice-president on the same stage. And that is really special,” says Dave Barnes, the University Unions director.

Student members of ODK are in charge of selecting the award winners. Each year, ODK receives countless nominations from every corner of the school, and it is their goal to select the people who best embody the spirit of JMU. To help their decision process, the selection committee looks at several aspects of the nominee and their contributions to JMU. Inspiration, community building, dedication to learning, a caring attitude, teamwork, and uniqueness are just a few of the qualities that are considered.

The committee aims for approximately five recipients each year; however, the number is flexible. The goal is quality, not quantity. In the past, anywhere from four to six people have received the award.

The awards recipients are recognized at a ceremony and receive a pin. They also are honored with a stone, on the Commons outside of D-Hall, engraved with their name to commemorate their contributions.

This year, the awards ceremony takes place on April 15, 2014 on the Commons at noon (rain location is Grafton-Stovall Theatre). The deadline for nominations is Friday, March 21, by 5 pm. So, keep an eye out or that one person who you believe truly embodies the spirit of JMU, and don’t hesitate to thank them for what they do by submitting their name for an All Together One award!

Send your nomination as an email attachment to  ODK considers the following criteria when evaluating nominations:

  1. Impact on the community
  2. Inspiring others
  3. An attitude of caring/humility/kindness
  4. A dedication to learning
  5. Committed to working together
  6. Unique contribution of nominee

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Published: Sunday, March 17, 2013

Last Updated: Wednesday, May 20, 2020

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