I begin this month’s column with exciting news about one of our own. Professor Ray Huff, FAIA, associate professor and director of the Clemson Architecture Center in Charleston, has been newly elected as a Fellow of the American Institute of Architects.
The AIA states “The AIA Fellowship program was developed to elevate those architects who have made a significant contribution to architecture and society and who have achieved a standard of excellence in the profession. Election to fellowship not only recognizes the achievements of the architect as an individual, but also honors before the public and the profession a model architect who has made a significant contribution to architecture and society on a national level.”
Ray joins fellow School of Architecture faculty members David Allison, Jim Barker, Lynn Craig and Kate Schwennsen as recipients of this prestigious peer-reviewed recognition of excellence. Ray will receive his fellowship medal at the AIA convention in Atlanta in May. Please join me in congratulating this outstanding architect and educator.
Another shoutout to a very special friend and supporter of our School of the Arts – Mike Gill. Mike has just been tapped by Maryland Governor Larry Hogan to serve as secretary of the state’s Department of Business and Economic Development. Congratulations, Mike! I’m sure you will hit a home run in your new role, as you have in so many others. Through his support of the Brooks Center for the Performing Arts, Mike has stepped up to the plate in a way that has made an important difference in the lives of many Clemson students. Mike also serves on the College of Architecture, Arts and Humanities Capital Campaign Committee.
In today’s economic climate, the role of private giving has become crucial to the health of our university. As we race toward the completion of our $1B Capital Campaign, every gift, from a $50 unrestricted gift to an endowed professorship or named building, is appreciated and needed to keep our upward momentum as a Top-20 public university. We are grateful for every gift and on behalf of our students, faculty and staff I want to express my sincere gratitude for your philanthropy. Private donations truly make a difference in the quality of a Clemson education.
Finally, I’d like to take a moment to thank all in CAAH who have played a part in elevating and facilitating conversations about race and diversity at Clemson. As you see in the story above, the yearlong series “Race and the University” continues throughout the spring. The series was very successful last fall, but this semester it seems to have taken on a life of its own with organic and widespread support, collaboration and participation across the Clemson campus and wider Clemson community. Special thanks to Professors Rhondda Thomas and Diane Perpich for their leadership roles in Race and the University. They have worked tirelessly, and behind the scenes, for months. Well done! It is an exciting time to be at Clemson.
I will close by saying how much fun it was to catch up with alumni recently as I visited Dallas, New York and the District of Columbia. It was wonderful to see you – and to see you thriving!
With best wishes from campus,
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