Centenary observes annual Founders' Day
SHREVEPORT, LA — Centenary College observed its annual Founders' Day on Thursday, February 18, handing out service pins and special awards and convening for President David Rowe's final "State of the College" address in Brown Chapel. Dr. Rowe will leave Centenary in June for Lake Highlands Preparatory School in Orlando, Florida.
Dr. Rowe took a highly personal approach to his "State of the College" address, stressing that the College's strength and resilience flows from its people, who provide the institution with "care, responsibility, pride, wisdom, morality, curiosity, creativity, confidence, and love." Citing the current fiscal crisis in the state of Louisiana and noting the intense competition that Centenary faces in the national higher education landscape, Dr. Rowe asserted, "Our threats are great. Our strengths are greater."
Immediately prior to the convocation, faculty and staff were recognized for sustained service to the College during the traditional Morning Call gathering in the Whited Room in Bynum Commons. 2015-2016 Student Government President Raquel Candal rang the bell to open the ceremony, and Dr. Rowe presented service pins to the following members of the Centenary community:
Mr. Aaron Allien, Information Technology
Dr. Joshua Lawrence, Associate Professor of Chemistry
Mr. Alan Berry, Marjorie Lyons Playhouse shop Foreman
Ms. D'An Gates, Sodexo
Mrs. Theresa Rinaudo, Administrative Assistant for Athletics
Dr. Michelle Wolkomir, Professor of Sociology
Mr. David Williams, Manager of Advancement Services
Dr. David Otto, Professor of Religious Studies
Dr. George Newtown, Professor of English
Mrs. Lynette Viskozki, Director of Financial Aid
Mrs. Patty Roberts, Editor and Advancement Writer
Mr. Michael Gideon, Facilities
Dr. Harold Christensen, Professor of Economics
Dr. Beth Leuck, Professor of Biology
Dr. Ed Leuck, Professor of Biology
Dr. Sam Shepherd, Professor of History
The Charleton Lyons Summer Research Award, President's Excellence Award, and Outstanding Teacher Award were also presented during Morning Call.
The Lyons Summer Research Award was presented to Dr. Lisa Nicoletti, allowing her to build on research begun under a previous Lyons Award. Nicoletti will travel to the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum to continue her research into the photographs of Otto Frank, father of Anne Frank.
Dr. Karen Soul, Vice Provost for Academic Affairs, received the 2016 President's Excellence Award for her dedicated service to the College. In his remarks during the ceremony, President Rowe noted that the Centenary community has come to rely on Soul's "professionalism, her knowledge of the intersecting pieces of Centenary, her steadiness, her organization, her empathy, and her wisdom multiple times daily."
Don Hooper, Professor of Theatre, was chosen from a field of 14 nominees as the 2016 Outstanding Teacher. One nomination mentioned that Hooper’s passion for his art is "too big to ignore," and another praised his tireless energy in recruiting new students and his dedication to the student experience.