Catawba Valley Community College Trustee Board Chairman Charles R. Preston was recently named to The Order of the Long Leaf Pine by Gov. Pat McCrory.
Considered among the highest honors the Governor can confer, the award recognizes citizens for their exemplary service and outstanding contribution to North Carolina.
Other recipients have included Andy Griffith, Bill Friday, Reverend Billy Graham and Michael Jordan.
Rep. Mitchell Setzer presented the award to Preston for his extensive public service to the citizens of Catawba County and North Carolina. The private ceremony took place at Preston’s home in Conover with his family.
Preston served in the North Carolina House of Representatives from 1993 to 1994 where he was a member of the Agriculture Committee, Finance Committee and the Committee on Education.
He has held a variety of community leadership positions, including vice chairman of the Catawba County Chamber of Commerce Governmental Affairs Committee, member of the Travel and Tourism Board for the Hickory Metro Center, executive committee for the Piedmont Council of the Boy Scouts of America, trustee for Catawba Memorial Hospital, commissioner on the North Carolina Wildlife Resources Commission, and as chairman of the Board of Elections for Catawba County.
Currently he serves as chairman of the Tax Board of Equalization and Review for Catawba County. He is chairman of the Board of Trustees for Catawba Valley Community College and was a trustee for 10 years before becoming chair.
A native of Columbus, Ga., Preston attended South Georgia College and Georgia State College. He was a member of the US Air Force and served in the National Guard Reserve. He pursued a number of successful business ventures in food service and outdoor signs.
He and his wife Carol have three adult children and live in Conover.