BRISTOL, Tenn., Aug. 1, 2020 — King University is pleased to announce the recipients of the 2020 Algernon Sydney Sullivan Award.
First presented in 1890 and awarded annually by more than 70 colleges and universities throughout the South, the award honors one graduating student and one community member for their high standards of character, integrity, and service, and for their commitment to creating positive change in their communities. This year’s awards were presented during King’s commencement ceremony on Saturday, Aug. 1.
Scholar Tristen Luu is graduating from King University with a degree in biology, with plans to pursue medical training and eventually teach medicine in an educational setting. A native of Amarillo, Texas, Luu began working with The Word at Work international mission in Amarillo at a young age, later serving with the mission in Belize. He continued his interest in missions with a University trip to Kenya and by volunteering at several medically oriented organizations, including the Remote Area Medical (RAM) Clinic.
A resident assistant for several years, Luu served as president of King’s Fellowship of Christian Athletes, a leader of Young Life at King, and he conducted informal Bible studies for fellow students. In addition, Luu volunteered as a youth volleyball coach and served as a tutor for anatomy and physiology students at King. He was awarded the Student Leadership Award by King University in 2018 for his dedication to, and sacrifices for, the sake of others.
“This award recognizes the actions of those who place service to others above themselves, and that describes Tristen perfectly,” said Brian Alderman, chaplain and associate professor of Bible and Religion at King. “For many years he has showed a strong desire to help edify the strength and health of others, a calling that he has continued to follow here at King, and one we believe will lead him on to increasingly greater accomplishments. We’re proud to see his efforts recognized in this wonderful way.”
Community member Steve Playl, Sr. has lived in and served the Bristol community for 33 years. He served as the senior chaplain at Bristol Regional Medical Center for 20 years and previously pastored Woodlawn Baptist Church for many years. Playl writes a weekly human interest column that appears in the Bristol Herald Courier, as well as newspapers in Kentucky and throughout Tennessee. He serves on numerous boards and committees in the Tri-Cities region, including the board of directors for the Bristol YMCA, the Bristol Regional Medical Center Ethics Committee, and the Ballad Health Cancer Awareness Board. Playl was also asked to serve as one of seven members of a strategic prayer force in Northeast Tennessee for Gov. Bill Lee.
“Steve has served numerous organizations throughout the Tri-Cities and Tennessee, and been a longtime supporter of King,” Alderman said. “He has served on the King University School of Nursing Advisory Board, taught as an adjunct professor at multiple King locations for nearly a decade and a half, and maintained a steadfast commitment to his faith and family. His actions in the King community and beyond exemplify the standards of this award, and we are grateful for his dedication.”
For more information about the Algernon Sydney Sullivan Award, visit https://sullivanfdn.org/awards.
King University is a Presbyterian-affiliated, doctoral-level comprehensive university. Founded in 1867 as King College, the University offers more than 90 majors, minors, pre-professional degrees and concentrations in fields such as business, nursing, law, medical and health sciences, pharmacy, education, and humanities. Graduate programs are offered in business administration, education, and nursing. A number of research, off-campus learning opportunities, and travel destinations are also available. King University is a NCAA Division II and a Conference Carolinas member with 25 varsity sports. For more information about King University, visit www.king.edu. King University does not discriminate against academically qualified students of any race, color, national or ethnic origin, sex, age, or disability. King University is certified by SCHEV to operate in Virginia. King’s primary location in Virginia is Southwest Virginia Community College, 724 Community College Rd, Cedar Bluff, VA 24609.