ARTBA Foundation announces financial assistance to seven children of fallen highway workers

ARTBA Foundation announces financial assistance to seven children of fallen highway workers

WASHINGTON, D.C. — Seven children of highway workers who were killed or permanently disabled on the job will receive post-high school financial assistance for the 2022-23 school year from the American Road & Transportation Builders Association Foundation’s (ARTBA-TDF) “Lanford Family Highway Worker Memorial Scholarship” fund.

Now in its 23rd year, the scholarship program was established with a gift from two Roanoke, Virginia, highway contractors and their companies—Stan Lanford (1999 ARTBA chairman) of Lanford Brothers, and Jack Lanford (1991 ARTBA chairman), with Adams Construction Company. Over 100 highway workers are killed annually in roadway construction and maintenance accidents, and thousands more are seriously injured.

Scholarships have been given to students from 33 states to pursue undergraduate and graduate courses as well as technical training. To make a tax-deductible donation or to share the name of a new student who could be eligible for the program, contact Melanie Laird at 202.683.1029 or mlaird@artba.org.

The 2022 class includes:

Payton Alcon, Elon, NC
Payton’s father, David, was killed by a machine rollover in 2014 while working for Delta Contracting, Inc.  Payton will be a freshman studying nursing at Alamance Community College in Graham, North Carolina.

Willie Blevins, Athens, GA
Willie’s mother, Kathy Blevins, worked for the Gwinnett County Department of Transportation. She had just finished painting turn-lane lines when her vehicle was struck and she was killed in 2004. Willie recently graduated with his bachelor’s degree in mechanical engineering from the University of Georgia and will be pursuing post-graduate studies at the same university.


“The ARTBA scholarship is helping ensure I successfully complete my college degree. For those who have made donations to support the fund, I’m living proof that you are truly making a positive difference.”
—Willie Blevins
University of Georgia,
Mechanical Engineering Major

Amy McNeil Graves, Lumberton, Texas
Amy’s father, Jeffrey McNeil, was killed in 2005 while working for the Texas Department of Transportation. Amy recently graduated with her bachelor’s degree in nursing from Lamar State College and will be pursuing her master’s degree in nursing from the University of Texas, Arlington.

Katie Hutt, Cleveland, TN
Katie’s father, Chris, was struck and killed in 2006 by a passenger vehicle while installing signage for United Rentals in a highway work zone. Katie will be a sophomore studying architecture at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville.

Jenna Jares, West, Texas
Jenna’s father, Gregory Jares, was killed in 2001 while working for the Texas Department of Transportation special crews. Jenna is a senior studying occupational therapy at the University of Mary Hardin-Baylor in Belton.

Breana Jones, Gaston, SC
Breana’s father, Standra Jones, Sr., died in 2007 after being struck by a vehicle while at work for the South Carolina Department of Transportation. Breana will be entering her freshman year at Winthrop University studying graphic design.

Joann Jones, Bluffton, IN


“The ARTBA scholarship fund is so important to families like mine—my older brother Dallas earned his degree with the help of the program in 2012. The scholarship is now helping me achieve my dream of studying biology.”
—Joann Jones
Case Western Reserve University,
Biology Major

Joann’s father, Dale, was struck and killed in 2009 while working for the City of Anderson Street Department. Joann will be a junior studying biology at Case Western Reserve University in Cleveland, Ohio.

The Foundation is also pleased to share the recent academic achievements of four of the scholarship’s multi-year recipients:

Andrea Pair Winters, Spiro, OK
Andrea completed her Doctor of Pharmacy degree at Harding University’s College of Pharmacy.

Stan Jones Jr., Gaston, SC
Stan graduated with a master’s degree in landscape architecture from Clemson University.

Hadley Voudrie, Trussville, AL
Hadley graduated with a bachelor’s degree in elementary education from the University of Montevallo.

Carolyn Lillis, Philomath, OR


“My dad becoming permanently disabled changed my life in ways I never previously imagined. Fortunately, the ARTBA scholarship fund was there to help me. I am forever grateful to all of the people who have donated to the program and helped build a better educational future for students like me.”
—Carolyn Lillis
Oregon State University,
Physical Therapy Major


Carrie graduated with a bachelor’s degree in physical therapy from Oregon State University.

Established in 1985, the ARTBA Foundation is a 501(c) 3 tax-exempt entity designed to “promote research, education and public awareness” about the impacts of transportation investment.  It supports an array of initiatives, including educational scholarships, awards, management and education programs, roadway work zone safety training, special economic research and reports, a transportation project safety certificate, and an exhibition on transportation at the Smithsonian National Museum of American History.

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