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William & Mary names 2012 Prentis Award recipient

  • 2012 Prentis Awardee
    2012 Prentis Awardee  Marc B. Sharp, president of Greensprings Plantation, Inc., is the 2012 recipient of William & Mary's Prentis Award.  Photo by Stephen Salpukas
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Marc B. Sharp will receive the College of William & Mary’s 2012 Prentis Award.  Sharp is president of Greensprings Plantation, Inc., part of the Bush Companies. William & Mary President Taylor Reveley will present the award at a reception honoring Sharp May 9.

The Prentis Award is given annually to a community member whose civic involvement benefits the community and the College.  It is named in honor of the Williamsburg family whose 18th century shop on Duke of Gloucester Street was a central part of the colonial community.  Members of the Prentis family have been friends of the College and the community since 1720 when the store was first established in Williamsburg.

“Marc Sharp is a marvelous recipient of the Prentis Award,” said Reveley. “He is committed to helping his community in quiet but significant ways, and he seeks to have no spotlight shown on the good he does. This is quite wonderful.  William & Mary is very pleased to have Marc join the ranks of our Prentis Award recipients.”   

In the greater Williamsburg community, Sharp is known for his work with Sentara Healthcare where he currently serves as chairman of the board of directors. He chaired the three-person Williamsburg Community Hospital negotiating committee that resulted in the hospital’s full merger and affiliation with Sentara Healthcare. This merger led the way for the construction of a new $200 million hospital and the creation of a $100 million independent community health foundation. Sharp also chaired the community committee that decided on the disposition of the old hospital property, which resulted in the transfer of that property to the College of William & Mary and development of the School of Education complex. 

“My wife and children have been in lockstep with me in believing that we owe back to our community for the good things we enjoy and also to make our world a better place by correcting problems we encounter,” Sharp said. “So much of what I believe in is a result of my unknowing mentors, and family. The recognition of the Prentis Award seems like something for which I should acknowledge many others.”

Sharp has also been generous with his time in working on the board of directors for multiple organizations, including: Child Development Resources, where he has served more than 18 years including terms as vice chairman and chairman; Housing Partnerships, Inc., where he is a multi-term member of the board and is currently treasurer with prior service as chairman; the Williamsburg Community Foundation, where he served as treasurer and vice chairman and the Williamsburg–James City County Education Foundation, where he is a  founding member, treasurer and past vice chair. He has also been a member of the board for the United Way of Greater Williamsburg, where he served eight years – including terms as treasurer and finance committee chair.

Sharp has been with the Bush Companies for 26 years. Currently, in addition to being president of Greensprings Plantation, Inc., he is manager/co-owner of the Plantation Group, LLC; and a vice president of Bush Development Corporation, where he previously served as president for 23 years, and Bush Construction Corporation. The Bush Companies specialize in multi-family residential housing in a market from Baltimore to Norfolk.

He attended the University of Virginia where he received a Bachelor of Science degree in commerce with distinction and a Master of Science degree in accounting from UVA’s McIntire School of Commerce. His college years were interrupted for five years of service in the U.S. Army including two years in Vietnam, 1970-71, as a helicopter pilot in an AH-1G Cobra attack helicopter company - D Troop, 1st of 1st Armored Cavalry.  He achieved the rank of chief warrant officer and was awarded two Bronze Stars and 11 Air Medals for his service.

Prior to his time with the Bush Companies, Sharp worked as a certified public accountant for KPMG (Peat Marwick), a national accounting firm, with duties including acting as senior audit manager and later senior tax manager in their Norfolk office for nine years and heading the “Private Business Advisory Services” practice area during its first two years.

He and his wife, Wilma – a retired school teacher, have been residents of James City County for more than 20 years. They have five children. Their daughter, Marcia Sharp McKinley ’04, received the College’s Sullivan Award for community involvement in her senior year and also won Governor Warner’s youth volunteer of the year award. 

“I have come to truly appreciate the wonderful community in which we live,” Sharp said. “Having both the College and Colonial Williamsburg makes living here almost a dream come true.”

The 2011 Prentis Award was awarded to Williamsburg Mayor and William & Mary Emeritus Professor of Economics Clyde Haulman.