Inspiration. Service. Community. Achievement. These are the common themes woven through the life stories of the 2023 Longwood Alumni Award winners. The awards annually honor Longwood graduates and friends for their outstanding achievements and service to others. Selected by the Alumni Board, recipients inspire the world around them through their professional and philanthropic achievements, their contributions to their communities as citizen leaders and their loyalty to Longwood.

From an early age, Diane Bottoms Boxley knew she wanted to go to college, even though her family did not have the means to send her. “I like learning things, and nobody was going to stop me from going to college is the way I looked at it,” she said.

Boxley worked summer jobs and saved her money. With that savings, along with scholarships and loans, she put herself through college, graduating with a degree in mathematics.

“As soon as I was able to afford it, I wanted to give back to Longwood to help other people who were in a similar situation,” she said. “I felt it was important for young people who wanted to go to college that they had some help if they couldn’t afford it.”

Boxley is among Longwood’s most loyal donors, having contributed to the alma mater consecutively for over 40 years. Her notable gifts include the naming of the Boxley Room in the Maugans Alumni Center and establishing the Diane Bottoms Boxley Scholarship, as well as the P. Seddon Boxley III Scholarship, named for her late husband.

“She is not only a consistent giver, she is a generous giver,” said Chris Neal ’05, former assistant vice president for leadership and planned giving.

Boxley, now retired from a lengthy career as an actuary, previously served on the Alumni Association Board, including one term as president, and then on the university’s Foundation Board.

“The growth of Longwood over the past 50 years since I graduated is good for the school,” she said. “The changes since I was there, especially Brock Commons, are wonderful. The campus looks fabulous.”

The Lifetime Loyalty Award honors alumni who volunteer service through active participation in alumni or university affairs, who provide faithful and continued support in expanding the influence and prestige of Longwood, and who have a history of philanthropic giving.

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