February 13, 2012

GSU Mourns the Passing of Honorary Alumnus Whitney Houston

GRAMBLING, LA – It seems as though it was only yesterday when Whitney Houston graced Grambling State University’s commencement stage in the summer of 1988 to receive one of the university’s highest honors, the honorary Doctor of Humane Letters. The Grambling State University Family, like others across the world, was saddened to hear the news of a fallen alumnus. Our sincerest sympathy is extended to the Houston family.

Ms. Houston was the most awarded female artist of all time, according to the Guinness World Records. She received 2 Emmy Awards, 6 Grammy Awards, 30 Billboard Music Awards, 22 American Music Awards, among a total of 415 career awards as of 2010. She held the all-time record for the most American Music Awards of any single artist and shared the record with Michael Jackson for the most AMAs ever won in a single year with 8 wins in 1994. In November 2010, Billboard released its “Top 50 R&B/Hip-Hop Artists of the Past 25 Years” list and ranked Houston at number three who not only went on to earn eight No. 1 singles on the R&B Hip-Hop Songs chart, but also landed five No. 1s on the R&B/Hip-Hop Albums. Although she released relatively few albums, she was ranked as the fourth best-selling female artist in the United States by the Recording Industry Association of America, with 55 million certified albums sold in the US alone. Ms. Houston was the first artist to be given a BET Lifetime Achievement Award.

Grambling State University President, Dr. Frank Pogue states, “Whitney Houston was the most naturally gifted singer I have ever heard. The fact that she was selected to receive an Honorary Doctorate, the most prestigious degree a university can confer, is a clear indication that Grambling has always recognized excellence. The fact that she willingly accepted the award confirms her respect for the academic quality for which Grambling is widely known. Her contributions in music will live forever.”

“The life of an entertainer is difficult and very demanding”, says Dr. Larry J. Pannell, GSU Acting Head of the Department of Music and Director of the GSU Tiger Marching Band. “The rigorous pressure of trying to stay on top makes it tougher. As a whole, when you look at her life, Whitney serves as an inspiration to all musicians who are striving to be the best that they can be by emulating her. It’s a sad day for the world and for the world of music. The music will live on and her spirit will live on through her music,” Pannell said.

“I was really saddened to hear of the loss of Whitney Houston,” states University Photographer Glenn Lewis. “She was a great singer and entertainer. Her 1987 Bayou Classic concert was simply superb. Seems like it was not that long ago (summer of 1988) when she walked across the T.H. Harris Auditorium stage and President Joseph Johnson awarded her the honorary doctorate,” Lewis commented.

Ms. Whitney Houston’s passing is a great loss to the world of music, her fans, family and the Grambling State University family. Her voice is forever etched in our memories.

NOTE: Photos of Ms. Whitney Houston receiving honorary degree and Bayou Classic performance.

Whitney Houston Honored
Whitney Houston Congratulated by GSU Pres. Johnson
Summer Graduation 1988 - Whitney Houston Honarary Degree
Whitney Houston performs at Bayou Classic Concert

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Media Contact:
Debra Johnson
318-533-5337
mediarelations@gram.edu

 

February 8, 2012

GSU Lyceum Series Speaker, Dr. Henry Louis Gates, Jr., Postponed

Due to circumstances beyond Grambling State University’s control, the February 9, 2012 appearance of Dr. Henry Louis Gates, Jr. at Grambling State University has been postponed. Arrangements are being made for his appearance at a later date.

Grambling State University would like to express its appreciation for all the interest shown in this Lyceum event.

The University’s next speaker in the Lyceum Series will be renowned poet Nikki Giovanni on March 15, 2012 at 6:00 p.m. in the T. H. Harris Auditorium.

-Lyceum Committee

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Media Contact:
Debra Johnson
318-533-5337
mediarelations@gram.edu

 

February 2, 2012

GSU Completes Search for Athletic Director

GRAMBLING, LA – After interviewing seven finalists recommended by a search committee, President Frank G. Pogue announced this week that Dr. Percy “Chico” Caldwell will assume the position of Athletic Director at Grambling State University, pending approval by the University of Louisiana System Board of Supervisors. More than 50 applications were received. Search Committee members were: Ms. Lynsey Carrier, Coach James Cooper, Dr. Birdex Copeland, Dr. Willie Daniel, Coach Bertram Lovell, Coach Donnita Rogers, Dr. Joyce Montgomery Scott and Coach Doug Williams.

“One of the difficult decisions was narrowing this extensive highly qualified pool of candidates to one individual,” says Dr. Pogue. “Dr. Caldwell’s experience and professional preparation will empower Grambling athletics to rise to the next level of excellence and bridge the gap between Grambling’s historic achievements and success in athletics and the academic mission of the University. He will bring significant strength to the athletic administration including planning, research, marketing and financial management.”

Dr. Caldwell, a former student athlete, received his doctorate from Iowa State University and earned certification as an Administrator Evaluator. He received a master’s degree in Health, Fitness and Recreation from the University of Alabama and a bachelor’s degree in Sociology/Psychology from Miles College in Birmingham, Alabama.

Dr. Caldwell has held several athletic positions over the course of his career. He was inducted into the Basketball Hall of Fame in 1989, named Coach of the Year in 1990 and Athletic Director of the Year in 1991 for the West Virginia Conference. He also served in the United States Army, Military Police Corps.

“To be afforded the employment opportunity at Grambling State University, a great academic institution with its rich athletic history drawing national attention, is special and very exciting. The rich athletic history separates Grambling State University from any other university. The stage is already set. My job will be to start from here assisting Dr. Pogue and his administration to continue to operationalize the mission and vision at GSU,” says Dr. Caldwell. “To be working with Dr. Frank Pogue and the GSU athletics staff will be an amazing opportunity. I am excited to get started,” he said.

Arrangements are underway for a press conference on Wednesday morning, February 15, at 10:00 in the Black and Gold Room of Favrot Student Union to formally introduce Dr. Caldwell to the Grambling Tiger world.

Grambling State University has 15 sports program: men’s football, basketball, baseball, cross country, track and field/outdoor; women’s basketball, bowling, track and field indoor/outdoor, cross country, tennis, soccer, softball and volleyball.

NOTE: Photo of Dr. Percy “Chico” Caldwell

Photo of Dr. Percy 'Chico' Caldwell

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Media Contact:
Debra Johnson
318-533-5337
mediarelations@gram.edu

 

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