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Introducing the New Honorary Alumni Association Inductees and Celebrating our Alumni of the Year and David L. Hood Jr. Award for Volunteer Service

Thanks to the remarkable contributions of numerous individuals within our Country Day community, both large and small, we stand as a beacon of educational excellence. Since its inception alongside our school’s 40th anniversary in 1981, the Honorary Alumni Association has served as a meaningful tribute to the parents, trustees, faculty, staff, and friends whose outstanding service and generous support have left an indelible mark. Each year, we gather for a dinner to welcome new inductees into this esteemed association. Additionally, we take this opportunity to acknowledge the Alumni of the Year and present the David L. Hood Jr. Award for Volunteer Service.

This year's event, held on February 22, 2024, was a celebration of four remarkable individuals whose dedication has greatly enriched our students' lives, advanced our mission, and strengthened our community, perpetuating the essence of Country Day's ethos in both life and learning.

  • Verl PurdyHonorary Alumnus
  • Robin RigginsHonorary Alumna
  • Anand Shah, M.D. ’98Alumnus of the Year
  • Wes ’90 and Anjie WatersDavid L. Hood Jr. Award for Volunteer Service



View Photos from the Event

Honorary Alumnus for Philanthropy: Verl Purdy

For many years, Verl Purdy has demonstrated an unwavering commitment to supporting excellence in education. Verl’s generosity continues to empower generations of Country Day students who benefit from the innovative programming offered in the Purdy Center for Science and Mathematics, which opened in 2018. Designed to drive innovative instruction and research, the Purdy Center allows students to conduct primary research onsite. As a nationally recognized philanthropist, Verl has served Country Day in some capacity for over 40 years. Verl has been a Board of Visitors member since 2010, serving as the longest-tenured Chair from 2020-2023. Beyond Country Day, Verl served as chairman of the Board for the West Virginia University Foundation and co-chaired a national campaign for the university that raised over $1.2 billion.

From modest means, Verl worked hard to become a successful business leader, founding or co-founding Agdata, MedData, and Cadrillion Capital.

In honoring him, E. Gordon Gee, president of West Virginia University, said, “Verl Purdy is someone who has a magic touch. The most important thing is that he wants to make a difference. He wants young people to thrive.”



Honorary Alumnus for Faculty and Staff: Robin Riggins

For more than 35 years, Robin Riggins has brought her love for children, upbeat personality, warm demeanor, listening ear, attention to detail, and so much more to make Country Day the welcoming community it is. As associate director of Admissions, she makes everyone feel important and valued—whether meeting a family for the first time or visiting with students about to graduate. A true professional, Robin puts her heart and soul into everything she does—usually with a kind word and a big smile. At a minimum, Robin has touched at least 5,000 families as they navigate what can be, for some, a daunting admissions process. For over 30 years, Robin has continued to manage Admissions' official testing sessions, and under her leadership, her team has tested at least 125 children annually (3,750 in total, but who is counting?). Her warmth and thoughtfulness in choosing proctors to shepherd children through the morning make even a weekend testing day palatable.

The impact Robin makes on our community is evidenced by the families who come to visit long after their admissions process concludes. Notes of gratitude from all generations, photos throughout the decades, and Country Day mementos cover the shelves and walls of Robin’s office.

“Elegance, compassion, and thoughtfulness, those are the words that describe my dear friend for the past 25 years,” said Brian Wise, director of Diversity Planning at fellow Honorary Alumni Association inductee. “When I think about who epitomizes love and community at Charlotte Country Day School, it’s Robin Riggins.”


David L. Hood Jr. Award for Volunteer Service

This award recognizes volunteers, Wes ’90 and Anjie Waters, who have given exemplary service to Country Day, demonstrating an active belief in the school and its mission, tireless energy, positive determination, and a heartfelt commitment to the betterment of our students’ experiences and opportunities.

Love for Country Day runs deep for Wes and Anjie Waters. For nearly 15 years as parents and supporters, the Waters have been quietly and humbly setting an example for others and making a difference through their volunteer service. Together, they have supported the Boosters Club through ticket and merchandise sales. Anjie has served in several of the Parents’ Association’s most important leadership roles, including as chair of the Projects Board, Big Saturday, and the Upper School Board. Wes has spent years serving on Country Day Fund committees, including many leadership roles such as chair of the Leadership and Upper School Divisions and parent grade level representative. As Leadership Chair, Wes was responsible for recruiting and leading volunteers to raise at least half of the Country Day Fund's annual goal.

Board Trustees Chairman Bill Zimmern, said, “Through their leadership in the Parents’ Association and the Country Day Fund among many other roles, they have given their all to make Country Day better.”