Faculty recognized at annual endowment ceremony

Published: October 21, 2022

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More than 40 Auburn faculty members were recognized on Oct. 13 as the university’s newly appointed or reappointed endowed chairs, professors and eminent scholars in a ceremony at the Jay and Susie Gogue Performing Arts Center.

Hosted by the Office of the Provost, the event recognized individual faculty members for their accomplishments and contributions to the university’s mission. Each honoree was presented with a commemorative medallion inscribed with their endowed title. In addition to faculty from every college, the ceremony also recognized the university’s five new Alumni Professors and this year’s Shug Jordan Professor of Writing.

Recognizing the importance of endowed positions to advancing Auburn faculty, Board of Trustees President Pro Tempore Bob Dumas offered remarks about the impact of endowments to support faculty excellence and the alumni and donors who established these endowments.

Among the faculty celebrated, the ceremony recognized several new endowments created this year, including the inaugural Emmett F. Thompson Endowed Deanship in the College of Forestry, Wildlife and Environment. Named for the former dean, Thompson helped establish the School of Forestry in 1984, serving as its founding dean until 1998. The deanship was presented to Janaki Alavalapati.

The ceremony also recognized the inaugural Jay and Susie Gogue Endowed Directorship in the EAGLES Program, held by Betty Patten, EAGLES program director and assistant clinical professor. The directorship honors the legacy of former Auburn President Jay Gogue and his wife, Susie, and was awarded to Patten earlier this year. As the program’s founding director, Patten is an assistant clinical professor of special education and was recognized for her leadership and vision to create inclusive opportunities for these students.