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‘#10,’ ‘First Dude’ and Cocoa move in to new Winthrop home

Comstock and her husband Larry pose with members of Winthrop’s Chapter of Pi Kappa Phi, who assisted with the family’s move-in.

Winthrop University’s tenth president officially made Rock Hill her home Friday, as she is set to take over as the head of the Rock Hill school July 1.

Jayne Marie Comstock, her husband Larry and chocolate lab Cocoa moved into the President’s Home with the assistance of volunteers from Winthrop’s chapter of the Pi Kappa Phi Fraternity.

It’s a welcome Comstock says has been indicative of the attention her family has received since first hearing she was chosen to lead the university in February.

“We’re just very enamored with Rock Hill,” Comstock said. “But the Winthrop community has filled us with so much warmth and welcoming spirit that it makes it humbling and overwhelming at the same time.”

Comstock says university staffers rearranged their schedules for the early Friday move-in, and the fraternity members made the welcome extra special.

The brought the new First Lady a dozen red roses.

“That was a nice surprise,” Comstock said. “They treated me like an honored dignitary…once I got to know them all I realized that they are exactly what we hope all of our Winthrop students will be. They’re fine, upstanding, polite, honorable men who were doing everything they could to make us feel at home.”

Comstock comes to Winthrop by way of the Washington-based American Council on Education and succeeds retiring president Anthony DiGiorgio.

Friday was a day her family had been looking forward to for some time.

“Once we had our campus visit, we started counting down the day for when it was time to move in and start the process,” Comstock recalled. “Each day, we would mark one off.”

Winthrop’s Board of Trustees officially approved Comstock’s five-year contract at its June 7 board meeting. Her contract runs through June 30, 2018.

“This formally brings to a conclusion Winthrop’s search for a tenth president and prepares us for a smooth start to the new fiscal year on July 1,” said Board Chair Dalton Floyd following the contract’s approval last week. “As a rolling contract, it follows the concept that has been in place at Winthrop for many years.”

Comstock will earn a state funded salary of $169,970 per year, including a supplement fro the Winthrop University Foundation. The contact also provides for $5,000 in moving expenses, a monthly car allowance, membership dues in sate and national professional educators’ organizations and reserved parking spots around campus.

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