Hendrix Magazine

Leigh Lassiter-Counts ’01

By Natalie Atkins
Assistant Editor

"Flag This!," Leigh’s sophomore intramural flag football team, didn’t quite tear up the competition on the field, though they "could have won the intramural championship in laughing," she says. The team may not have won a championship, but not many teams choreographed their own halftime show.

A decade later, Leigh, who by this time was working for the College’s Advancement Division, watched as Grove Gymnasium was torn down and replaced by a new Wellness and Athletics Center.

One of the strangest things she recalls as a staff member is the gym floor being carved into pieces for alumni during the "Goodbye Grove" celebrations.

"You think about all the games that have been played, all the stories that gym had seen, the blood, sweat and tears left out there by a generation of Warriors ... and there it was, sitting in six-inch square pieces in my office."

Grove gave way to a great new facility for current students, but as a former student athlete, she is "completely jealous" of the Wellness and Athletics Center.

Along with being a four-year letterman in intercollegiate tennis and championship intramural laugher and choreographer, Leigh was active in Campus Kitty, Social Committee, Student Athlete Advisory Council, Orientation, and the Volunteer Action Committee.

A Monticello native, Leigh graduated from Hendrix in 2001 with an interdisciplinary major she designed called "The History of Medicine." She was also awarded the President’s Medal, given to the student who best exemplifies the values of Hendrix.

After Hendrix, she earned a master’s degree in Higher Education Administration from the University of Arkansas. She worked as a fundraiser at the University of Texas Medical Branch in Galveston, Texas, before returning to Hendrix in 2005, where she has served as Major Gifts Officer, Associate Alumni Director, and Director of Annual Giving.

In her current role as Associate Director of Career Services and Internship Coordinator, Leigh works with current students looking for internships or post-graduate employment, coordinates employer site visits and identifies professionals for students to shadow in their career field of interest. She also runs the Friday Alumni Connection Time (F.A.C.T.) program, which invites alumni from different career areas to come to campus each Friday to meet one-on-one with students.

"This job is a perfect mix for me – combining my passion for helping students with my relationships and friendships built through my five years in the development and alumni offices," says Leigh. "[The students’] imagination, energy and ideas make every day an adventure."

Outside of work, Leigh recently ran a half-marathon. She enjoys her book club and attending Hendrix sporting events with her husband, Richard Counts ’01 and their daughter, Eliza Clare Counts, born on April 11, 2009.

Having spent nearly a decade of her life on campus, Leigh says Hendrix "has always felt like ‘home’ to me both as a student and now as a professional. [The college] is still holding true to the values that made me love it as a student – the faces and buildings may have changed, but the "feeling" of Hendrix is still the same."