Four Inducted into West Liberty University Wall of Honor





WEST LIBERTY — West Liberty University was unable to enjoy its usual Homecoming Weekend due to the pandemic, but that didn’t stop the Alumni Association from selecting four leaders whose names will be added to its Wall of Honor.

“We are disappointed that our in-person Wall of Honor ceremony and dinner was postponed along with all Homecoming activities due to safety concerns but we know our alumni understand. We hope to have an alumni event in the spring at which time we will recognize the inductees formally,” said Executive Director of Alumni Ron Witt.

The four selected as the 2020 Wall of Honor inductees are:

* Dr. Gerald R. Crabtree, Woodside, Ca., a medical doctor and renowned professor

* Carol Spadafore Frum, Wheeling, W.Va., a dental hygienist and educator

* Barbara J. Laifer, Nashville, Tenn., an entertainer and educator

* Dr. Aaron J. “A.J.” Monseau, Morgantown, W.Va., a physician and educator

Gerald Crabtree grew up outside of Wellsburg, W.Va. and graduated from West Liberty in 1968. He then went on to earn his medical degree from Temple Medical School in Philadelphia. Crabtree completed his residency at Dartmouth College in 1985 and shortly thereafter, joined the faculty of Stanford Medical School.

He was named the David Korn Professor in 2008 and was named Faculty Mentor of the Year that same year.

Crabtree teaches and directs a laboratory investigating fundamental mechanisms underlying cancer and human neurodevelopment.

His scientific accomplishments include discoveries related to the coding capacity of the human genome, the molecules involved in the immune response and the development of the nervous system.

Based on work in his Stanford laboratory, he cofounded three companies and is on the board of several charitable foundations.

He received the Javits Neuroscience Investigator Award from the National Institutes of Health in 2013. He is a member of the National Academy of Sciences, the Howard Hughes Medical Institute and a Fellow of the American Society for the Advancement of Science.

Carol Spadafore Frum graduated from WLU’s Sarah Whitaker Glass School of Dental Hygiene in 1960. She was employed as a hygienist in various dental practices for 16 years before returning to the Hilltop. She then joined the Dental Hygiene Department as an adjunct clinical laboratory assistant in 1975.

In 1980, she was appointed a full-time course instructor and the clinical supervisor, a position she held for 16 years. She then went on to earn a master’s degree from West Virginia University in 1983.

As a WLU associate professor, she served as the program director for six years. Frum was a Northeast Regional Examining Board evaluator for the clinical dental hygiene licensure process. On her retirement, she received the designation of associate professor emeritus for her service to West Liberty.

She is a past member and chairperson of the WLU Alumni Association Board of Directors and she continues to support the university and the dental hygiene program through an annually awarded scholarship.

She is married to alumnus James Frum, who was inducted into the Wall of Honor in 2000 and they have three adult children and three grandchildren.

A native of Wheeling, Barbara “Barb” Laifer is a 1975 graduate of West Liberty with a bachelor’s degree in music, speech and theatre with a minor in speech therapy. She earned a master’s in vocal performance from Austin Peay State University and a master’s of education in speech-language pathology from Tennessee State University.

Laifer has performed on stages from Wheeling to Europe and toured nationally as part of the New Seekers pop group. She has been a featured soloist in diverse musical styles including Mendelssohn Choir directed by Dr. Robert Page, Nashville Symphony Chorus, Nashville Opera, and “For Me and My Gal” musical at Opryland that brought her to Nashville in 1983.

She also founded and was soloist for Barbara Laifer and Ye Olde Carolers in Wheeling and Nashville.

As a teacher, her students were consistently recognized for excellence, including selection to sing at Carnegie Hall, and with a letter of recognition from former First Lady Michelle Obama. Her therapy work ranged from children to military veterans.

Laifer has supported WLU in a variety of ways and initiated the Vernon D. “Mike” Riemer Scholarship Fund to honor WLU’s now deceased speech professor. In her spare time, she volunteers with several Nashville organizations, rescues animals and pursues sports.

Dr. Aaron Joel “A.J.” Monseau grew up in West Liberty and was frequently on campus as his father Vince was long-time professor and coach and his mother an administrative secretary at Elbin Library.

After completing his bachelor’s as an Elbin Scholar at West Liberty with a double major in biology and chemistry in 2003, Monseau earned his medical degree at West Virginia University. He completed his residency in Emergency Medicine followed by a Primary Care Sports Medicine Fellowship at the University of Michigan.

He is certified in both fields and currently serves at WVU as associate professor in emergency medicine, Head Team Physician and Medical Director for Athletics, and Fellowship Director of Primary Care Sports Medicine (a program he founded).

Monseau wrestled and ran cross country on the hilltop where he was an NCAA Division II Wrestling All-American, a 4-time NWCA Scholar All-American, 2-time team captain and NCAA Post-Graduate scholarship recipient. While at West Liberty, he also led the Fellowship of Christian Athletes.

In addition to clinical and administrative duties, Monseau is involved in research and has been published in numerous journals and texts as well as leadership, speaking, and moderating positions in national organizations and committees. He served as team physician for USA Wrestling for national and international competitions including the 2016 Rio Olympics. In 2017, the WVSSAC appointed him to their Sports Medicine Committee.

With other WLU wrestling alums, he established the Wrestling Legacy Gift to support the WLU wrestling program in 2018. He continues to work in community health efforts and youth sports in Morgantown where he resides with his wife Chandra and their four children.For more information, please visit westliberty.edu/alumni or call 304.336.8888.


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