The Golden LEAF Foundation Announces Departure of Senior Vice President Dr. Mark Sorrells

The Golden LEAF Foundation Announces Departure of Senior Vice President Dr. Mark Sorrells

17-Year Foundation Veteran to Join Fayetteville Technical Community College

December 6, 2018

CONTACT: Jenny Tinklepaugh
252.442.7474 ext 226
[email protected]

Rocky Mount, NC – The Golden LEAF Foundation Board of Directors and President Dan Gerlach announced today that Dr. Mark A. Sorrells, Senior Vice President of the Foundation and its longest serving staff member, will leave Golden LEAF at the end of December to join Fayetteville Technical Community College as Senior Vice President of Academic and Student Services.

“Dr. Sorrells has been a great asset for Golden LEAF for many years. His leadership, thoughtful evaluation, and oversight of grant performance set a high bar for stewardship of the funds entrusted to us,” said Golden LEAF Board Chairman Randy Isenhower. “As a native son of rural North Carolina, he has a great passion for the people and welfare of our rural communities. We wish him all the best as he brings that passion, and his considerable talents, to Fayetteville Tech.”

Dr. Sorrells joined the Foundation in May 2001 as Vice President of Programs and was promoted to Senior Vice President in 2004. He holds Bachelor and Master of Business Administration degrees from the University of Tennessee-Knoxville and earned his Doctor of Education from East Carolina University in May 2018.

“Mark has led Golden LEAF’s path breaking efforts in fields as diverse as biotechnology, aerospace, digital learning, advanced manufacturing, and STEM education,” said Dan Gerlach, Foundation President. “His creativity, attention to detail, and commitment to mission have been personally inspiring to me in the ten years I have worked with him. I will miss Mark as a friend and colleague, but am delighted that he will join an excellent institution of higher education with a great leader, Fayetteville Tech President Dr. Larry Keen.”

Gerlach and past Foundation President Valeria Lee presented Sorrells with the Order of the Long Leaf Pine on behalf of Governor Roy Cooper. The Order is presented to residents who have provided exemplary service to NC.

Gerlach also announced that long-time Vice President of Programs/Staff Attorney Ted Lord will be promoted to Senior Vice President, effective immediately. A staff reorganization plan approved by the Board today will disperse duties across existing staff, and not require any new hires.

“While Mark’s departure is challenging, the Board and I are confident that Ted and his leadership abilities will allow us to keep moving forward seamlessly as we continue to help the state recover from recent natural disasters and look towards 20 years of service to rural North Carolina in 2019. We are always searching for ways to work more efficiently, and this revised structure will allow us to do exactly that,” said Gerlach.

About the Golden LEAF Foundation

The Golden LEAF Foundation is a nonprofit organization established in 1999 to receive a portion of North Carolina’s funding received from the 1998 Master Settlement Agreement with cigarette manufacturers. For almost 20 years, Golden LEAF has worked to increase economic opportunity in North Carolina’s rural and tobacco-dependent communities through leadership in grantsmaking, collaboration, innovation, and stewardship as an independent and perpetual foundation.

The Foundation has provided lasting impact to tobacco-dependent, economically distressed and rural areas of the state by helping create 63,000 jobs, over half a billion dollars in new payrolls and more than 68,000 workers trained or retrained for higher wages.

To learn more about the Golden LEAF Foundation, visit or call 888.684.8404.

Dr. Mark A. Sorrells
Link to photo of Dr. Mark A. Sorrells
Ted Lord
Link to photo of Ted Lord










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