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Concord University Mourns Loss Of Dr. Grindstaff

CONTACT: Sarah Dalton
Concord University
Office of Advancement
PO Box 1000, Athens, WV 24712
(304) 384-6312,


Dr. Charles Curtis Grindstaff
ATHENS, W.Va. – Concord University is mourning the loss of Dr. Charles Curtis Grindstaff, associate professor of education. Dr. Grindstaff passed away unexpectedly Friday Dec. 2.

A highly respected educator and community servant on the Concord campus and throughout southern West Virginia and southwest Virginia, Dr. Grindstaff joined the Concord University Faculty in 2008 after 39 years of service as both a teacher and administrator in the public schools. His experience spanned all grade levels, which included positions as a principal of the elementary school, middle school, high school, and career and technical school, as well as, a supervisor at the district level.

Dr. Grindstaff applied his understanding of administration as an instructor in Concord’s Educational Leadership Master’s program. In addition, he taught undergraduate courses in assessment for the Teacher Preparation program.

“The entire Concord University community is deeply saddened by the loss of Dr. Grindstaff,” Concord University President Dr. Gregory F. Aloia said. “He was admired and respected for his outstanding abilities as an educator and his exceptional character and friendship. He adhered to the highest standards in the classroom, and he had a gift for connecting with students that encouraged them in their studies and challenged them to reach for excellence.”

“He was a well respected and loved faculty member whose impression on students, faculty and staff was that of a servant-leader,” Concord University Interim Vice President and Academic Dean Dr. Kendra Boggess said. “He was humble. He always tried his very best to take care of student needs and they are just heartbroken about what has happened as are all of us at Concord.”

“Dr. Grindstaff was an asset to the Teacher Education Program at Concord. He brought a wealth of experience and expertise to our undergraduate and graduate students, and was a role model for all of us. He will be sorely missed,” Dr. Kathryn L. Liptak, chair of Concord’s Division of Education and Human Performance and director of Teacher Education, said.

A resident of Tazewell, Va., Dr. Grindstaff was born Sept. 3, 1947 in Bluefield, W.Va. He was a son of the late Clemon Basil Grindstaff and Betty Frances Kern Grindstaff. He grew up in Bishop, Va. and graduated from Tazewell High School, East Tennessee State University, Radford University and NOVA University.

Dr. Grindstaff began his career in education in 1969. Prior to joining the faculty at Concord, he worked for Tazewell County Public Schools and Horry County, S.C. Schools. For more than 15 years he served the Town of Tazewell as councilman and mayor, a position he held at the time of his death. He performed in local theater and was an avid sportsman and musician.

Dr. Grindstaff was a nationally certified evaluator for AdvancEd, and served as the Chair on numerous Quality Assurance Review Team visits to schools within the state of Virginia.
While at Concord University, he served on the Strategic Planning and the Human Resources Advisory Committees.

Along with Dr. Anita Reynolds and Dr. Terry Mullins, he made presentations at state, national, and international conferences, showcasing their 21st Century innovative online team-teaching approach for Educational Psychology, Assessment and Technology (EPAT). Dr. Grindstaff and his two colleagues received the Excellence in Teaching Award at Concord University for their work on EPAT. In addition, he was honored by the Student Government Association with the Friedl Award in May, 2011.

In addition to his parents, he was preceded in death by two brothers, Robert Grindstaff and Dennis Grindstaff.

He is survived by his wife, Suzanne Grindstaff; two daughters, Christina Mitchell of Colorado and Heather Johnson and husband, Curtis of Tazewell, Va.; one son, Andy Grindstaff of Charlottesville, Va.; three grandchildren, Ashley McCane of Ohio, Dana Grindstaff of Tazewell, Va., and Ally Mitchell of Hillsborough, N.C.; one sister, Mary Grindstaff of Pittsboro, N.C.; two brothers, Phil Grindstaff of Roanoke, Va. and Todd Grindstaff and wife, Cathy of Greensboro, N.C.; beloved nieces and nephews, Carrie Harwood and husband, Cary, Autumn Daniel and husband, Adam, Lee Grindstaff, Kurt Grindstaff, Anna Grindstaff, Bailey Boyd, and Randi Bratton; sister-in-law, Libby Boyd and husband, Joe; father and mother-in-law, Fred and Iris Williams.

The family will receive friends from 5 p.m. - 7: 30 p.m., Tuesday, Dec. 6, 2011 at Peery & St. Clair Funeral Home in Tazewell, Va. where a memorial service will be conducted at 7:30 p.m. with Pastor Steve Branch and the Reverend Russell Hatfield officiating.