ROCK HILL, S.C. - To commemorate its start 100 years ago, the Rock Hill Coca-Cola Bottling Company has established an endowment at Winthrop University in memory of its founders, Mark and Mayme Mauldin.
The $150,000 endowment, which was announced April 1 during a special centennial gala hosted by Rock Hill Coca-Cola, acknowledges and honors the Mauldins’ long-standing commitment to education and to York County. The Mark and Mayme Mauldin Fellowship for Excellence in Special Education will support outstanding teachers in York County who are pursing additional certification in special education.
During the evening’s program, Rock Hill Coca Cola’s president Fred Faircloth told the story of the Mauldin family, including how his grandparents Mark and Mayme Mauldin had come to Rock Hill "sight unseen" to take over the fledgling bottling company and build it into the regional enterprise that it has become.
"York County has been very good to us," he said, "and this scholarship at Winthrop is our way of expressing appreciation to the citizens of York County for a century of support."
Winthrop officials are pleased to offer the support. "The Mauldin Fellowship has the potential help hundreds of York County students in the years to come," said Patricia Graham, dean of Winthrop’s Richard W. Riley College of Education. "Receiving additional coursework in special education aids teachers in being more effective with learners in every classroom setting."
The first fellowship will be awarded this fall. Karl Folkens, chair of the Winthrop Board of Trustees, and Carlos Evans, president of the Winthrop Foundation, accepted the gift and expressed the university’s appreciation for the role that Rock Hill Coca Cola Bottling Company has played over many years.
Rock Hill Coca-Cola has a long history of partnering with Winthrop to support athletics, academics and nearly every other facet of Winthrop life. Last fall, the university named its athletics academic resource center, housed in the Winthrop Coliseum, in honor of Rock Hill Coca-Cola. The naming acknowledged a significant long-term contribution that will, in part, fund an endowment for athletics scholarships.
Rock Hill Coca-Cola contributes regularly to the Winthrop Annual Fund and Friends of the Library and was a major supporter of Winthrop’s first capital campaign.