St. Aug’s New Interim Pres. Is No Stranger

On March 19, the Saint Augustine’s University Board of Trustees of introduced the interim President during a press conference and Town Hall Meeting with alumni. 

Dr. Gaddis Faulcon said he is “ready and has been prepared by Saint Augustine’s University and NC State University to accept this role.” He added, “I am ready for this window of opportunity.” 

Dr. Faulcon shared that his vision for the University going forward is “student-centered.” He is focused on the mission of the University acknowledging that the goal is to prepare students and give them the opportunity to reach their full potential.

He concluded that he plans to foster an environment of team work where all those committed to the University will function with “one heartbeat” in the tradition of Bear Bryant.

Board of Trustees Chairman Hilton Smith said, “We are pleased that Dr. Gaddis Faulcon, our 1974 alumnus, has agreed to lead our transition team. He brings the passion and previous experience serving in this pivotal role.”  

Faulcon recently served as Vice President of Enrollment Management at Saint Augustine’s University. He also led Shaw University as its interim president from 2014 to 2015. 

Faulcon, who joined the faculty at Shaw in 1998, has 30 years of experience in higher education and has previously served in several administrative roles. In addition to his roles at Saint Augustine’s and Shaw University, he served as acting executive director for Northeastern North Carolina Tomorrow, Inc. at Elizabeth City State University.  

Faulcon earned a B.S. degree in health and physical education from Saint Augustine’s; an M.R.R/M.P.A. in recreation resources management and public administration; and an Ed.D. in higher education and public administration both from North Carolina State University. 

“I am truly honored to be asked to lead my alma mater at this crucial time in our 152-year history and look forward to working with all those who are committed to writing our next great chapter together,” Faulcon said. 

At the same meeting, new board members were elected.  Those members are Dr. Frankie Jones, Marley Bollinger, and Dr. John Larkins.  Chairman Smith announced, “I am pleased to welcome our three newest members to our Board of Trustees. They have unique and diverse experiences in both the private and public sectors that make them an asset to the Board and the University as a whole.” 

Dr. Jones is President and CEO of Phoenix One Enterprise and Phoenix One Farms, Inc. headquartered in Alamance County, North Carolina.  Dr. Jones is responsible for the firm’s operations in the areas of corporate social responsibility, strategic philanthropy, labor relations, crisis management, and marketing and community relations.  Dr. Jones serves on various boards including Duke Energy Corporate Advisory Board, High Point University Board of Visitors, and Wake Forest University School of Divinity Board. He has provided consulting services to corporations, institutions, and nonprofit organizations including Rooms To Go Inc., General Motors, FDIC, Michelin North America, Sara Lee, Sprint, Lowes Companies Inc, Freddie Mac, Food Lion Inc, The American Legion, Wake Forest Medical School, the National American Red Cross, and the CIA. Dr. Jones is a retired United States Air Force Colonel. He served as commander of 436th Headquarters Support Squadron, Dover AFB, commander of the 3400th Technical Training Group- Keesler AFB, the largest and most diversified technical training organization in the Department of Defense where he was responsible for the annual personnel training requirements of 11,000 men and women. Dr. Jones holds a B.S. degree, two M.S. degrees, and a Ph.D. from his studies and NC A&T State University, Tuskegee University, Wayne State University, Shaw University, Virginia University – Lynchburg, and Oxford Graduate School. He recently completed the Director’s Finance Program at the Tuck School of Business at Dartmouth College. 

Tucker Headlines ECSU Jazz Festival

Some of the most innovative jazz coming out of the contemporary music scene today is about to make its mark at Elizabeth City State University on Tuesday, April 9, for the annual Jazz Festival.

ECSU’s Department of Visual and Performing Arts will present the Jazz Festival 2019 featuring “An Evening with Shana Tucker.” The event also features the ECSU/Northeastern High School Honor Jazz Band, and The ECSU String Ensemble.

Tucker is described as a “lyrical storyteller, soulful cellist, dynamic singer-songwriter.” Her unique genre of music, “ChamberSoul,” weaves together jazz, roots folk, acoustic pop and R&B.

“I’m intrinsically drawn to acoustic instruments because of their resonance, warmth, and intimacy,” says Tucker. “ChamberSoul brings musicians and audience close, and makes the music tangible, no matter how large or small the room is.”

Performing with Tucker are members of The Shana Tucker Quartet: Elizabeth City native and NCCU percussion instructor Thomas Taylor on the drums, Federico Pena on the piano, and Romeir Mendez on the bass.

Tucker is an accomplished teaching artist as well, and will hold a clinic at ECSU. She incorporates community engagement, workshops, and teaching residencies into her touring schedule.

Working with everyone from college students to pre-K children, she is a North Carolina A+ Schools Apprentice Fellow, and has been a teaching artist with Wolf Trap Institute for Early Learning Through the Arts since 2015.

She has also been a teaching artist with United Arts Council of Raleigh/Wake County and The Smith Center for Performing Arts in Las Vegas.

The morning of April 9, Tucker will also hold a free Jazz Appreciation Clinic for regional K–12 students. The theme of the clinic is “The Use of the Cello and Other Stringed Instruments in Jazz.”

The clinic will be held at 10 a.m. in the ECSU Fine Arts Building.

The Jazz Festival 2019 is a free concert open to the public. It happens April 9, 7:30 p.m., in the Robinson Auditorium of the ECSU Fine Arts Center. 

For more information contact the ECSU Office of Communications and Marketing at 252-335-8745.


Rye To Speak At NCCU Women’s Symposium

DURHAM—CNN commentator and attorney Angela Rye will be the featured keynote speaker at the 6th Annual Expo and Symposium hosted by North Carolina Central University’s (NCCU) Women’s Center. 

The symposium, titled “I’m Every Woman,” will be held at 7 p.m. on March 27, in B.N. Duke Auditorium on the university’s campus. Doors open at 6 p.m. for the free and public event. The symposium is held in partnership with the Rock The Lyceum lecture series and University College.

A Seattle native, Angela Rye is a prominent strategist who has offered commentary for several media outlets including CNN, BET, NBC, HBO, ABC and MSNBC. Her dialogue ranges from political campaigns to complex legislation and administration policies with national and international implications. 

She has become a voice of conviction on many pressing issues in the United States, including politics, race in America, criminal and social justice and other public policy issues.

In addition, Rye is the Principal and CEO of IMPACT Strategies, a political advocacy firm that seeks to encourage young professionals in three core areas: economic empowerment, civic engagement, and political involvement. She currently serves on the board of the Congressional Black Caucus Institute and is a senior advisor to the Government Technology and Services Coalition.

Along with Rye, the symposium will feature Shayla Hebron, network producer and owner of Beyond the Lens LLC, and Tracy Mosley, NCCU alumna and promotions director for Radio One.

Before the symposium, there will be a vendor expo and Project SAFE testing from 3 p.m. to 6 p.m. on Brant Street Plaza. Project SAFE is a peer education program aiming to reduce the incidence of HIV and other sexually transmitted infections among college students.

Milestone At Tuskegee With 1st Female President

Dr. Lily D. McNair will become Tuskegee University’s eighth president after being unanimously selected by its Board of Trustees. She will serve as the first female president of the institution in its 136-year history.

McNair currently is provost and senior vice president for academic affairs at Wagner College in New York City. She will begin her duties at Tuskegee on July 1, 2018.

“When we launched our presidential search last October, our goal was to identify someone who could champion both Tuskegee’s historic legacy and her place in the future of higher education,” said John E. Page, chair of Tuskegee’s Board of Trustees. “Our Board of Trustees is confident that Dr. McNair brings to Tuskegee the precise skill set required to ensure we continue thriving as one of the nation’s leading HBCUs.”

Since 2011, McNair has served as the second-ranking executive of Wagner College — a private college of 2,200 students located on New York City’s Staten Island. A clinical psychologist by training, Dr. McNair’s higher education career includes other academic, research and executive appointments at Spelman College, University of Georgia, the State University of New York at New Paltz, and Vassar College.

A native of New Jersey, Dr. McNair holds an undergraduate degree in psychology from Princeton University, and master’s and doctoral degrees in psychology from the State University of New York at Stony Brook.

Burt Rowe, a 1970 Tuskegee graduate, president of the Tuskegee National Alumni Association Inc., and search committee member, attested to McNair’s collaborative approach to engaging alumni, donors and other university stakeholders.

“I am honored and excited to welcome Dr. McNair to the Tuskegee family. She is a trusted and well-respected leader who understands Tuskegee’s unique heritage, culture and traditions,” Rowe said. “Deeply engaging and collaborative, she is committed to ensuring that all voices of the Tuskegee family will be heard, and I am confident that alumni will enjoy working with Dr. McNair to continue moving ‘the pride of the swift-growing South’ forward.”

Graduating senior Austin Turk, who represented students on the search committee and has worked closely with university administrators as Tuskegee’s current Student Government Association president, was equally encouraged by McNair’s credentials.

“I was very impressed with Dr. McNair’s enthusiasm for fostering student success,” Turk said. “She has demonstrated a strong commitment to mentoring many students and providing academic and professional guidance. I know that Tuskegee will benefit greatly from her leadership.”

McNair views both Tuskegee’s reputation and legacy as its foundation for continued success under her leadership.

“I am honored and humbled to be selected to serve as the eighth president of Tuskegee University,” she said. “The historic contributions of the university’s students, faculty and alumni are well known and valued throughout the nation. I very much look forward to building on the legacy of my predecessors so that Tuskegee University will ascend to even greater heights in the years to come.”

Wagner College President Richard Guarasci reflected on McNair’s appointment by saying, “I congratulate Lily for her selection, as well as for the intelligence, professionalism and grace that she has maintained throughout her seven years as provost.”

McNair’s appointment follows a six-month national presidential search that began on Oct. 18, 2017. During that time, and in partnership with the search firm Isaacson, Miller, the Presidential Search Committee conducted listening sessions with senior administrators, faculty, staff, students and alumni; administered a stakeholder survey to garner additional opinions about the requirements, qualifications and opportunities for the university’s eighth president; and evaluated more than a 150 prospective candidates, narrowing the field to a small group who were interviewed in person.

Since Tuskegee University’s founding in 1881, it has been under the leadership of seven presidents — the first of which was Booker T. Washington, who led the institution from 1881 to 1915. McNair will succeed Interim President Charlotte P. Morris, whose 35-year tenure with the university has included two terms as interim president — the most recent of which began on July 1, 2017.

Morris, who accepted the appointment as interim president on a temporary basis, will remain in service to the university during the fall semester as a member of the Brimmer College of Business and Information Science’s teaching faculty. She also will assist with the transition of leadership in the Office of the President.