The World Needs Visionaries
See you in Charleston; Claflin Hosts Alumni Convention in Holy City

The Greater SC Coastal Alumni Chapters of Claflin University (which consists of Berkeley, Charleston, Colleton & Dorchester counties) will host the 45th Claflin University International Alumni Convention on April 25-28, in North Charleston, S.C. This year's planning committee is pleased to welcome attendees to Charleston, the "birthplace" of Claflin University, where the theme for the Convention is "Visionaries: From the Lowcountry to a Hilltop High." Click here to watch a video that will welcome you to Charleston for the Convention!
Claflin to Honor Blackbaud President and Retired Circuit Judge/Board of Trustee Member at Annual Alumni Convention Corporate Breakfast

Tim Hill, president and general manager of Blackbaud's Higher Education Business Unit will be the keynote speaker for the 45th Annual Claflin University International Alumni Association Convention's Corporate Breakfast on Friday, April 26, at 8 a.m. The breakfast will take place at the North Charleston Marriott Hotel.

Hill joined Blackbaud in October 2016 as president and general manager of the Higher Education Business Unit. He is a visionary, award winning global marketing, sales and operations executive with over 25 years of executive experience at high growth technology companies. He has led worldwide sales, marketing and operations organizations at leading technology companies including Blackboard, SAGA Software (Software AG), Iomega Corporation and Gates Energy Products. With more than two decades of success in sales/marketing strategy and brand development, Hill has been named one of the "Top 10 U.S. Marketers" by Crain's Business Marketing; "Top 100 Executives" by Advertising Age and won "Product Launch of the Year" from Marketing Computers (for the Iomega zip drive).

Hill served as a senior executive at edtech leader Blackboard for over eight years, most recently as president, Global Marketing. Prior to this, he was president of the Professional Education business unit (ProEd) focused on government, corporate, for-profit education and association market verticals. Under Tim's leadership, ProEd tripled new sales in his five years at the helm while doubling the number of clients.
Prior to joining Blackboard, he served as principal of Hill Partners, a consulting firm specializing in edtech branding and channel marketing. Before founding Hill Partners, he served as senior vice president of Worldwide Marketing and International Sales at SAGA Software (Software AG Americas.)

During the breakfast, Claflin University will also honor retired circuit judge and former Board of Trustee member, The Honorable Richard Fields. Fields became the first black attorney to run a law office in Charleston since Reconstruction. In 1969 he became a municipal judge, a position he held until becoming a Family Court judge in 1975. In 1980 he was elected a circuit judge, and served until his retirement from the bench in 1992. He has also been active in civic and business affairs, helping to establish Liberty National Bank in 1980.

Political officials scheduled to attend the breakfast are: The Honorable John J. Tecklenburg, mayor of the City of Charleston; Kenny Skipper, North Charleston City Council District 9 and Mayor Pro Tem; Representative David J. Mack III, Charleston District 9; and Representative Joseph H. Jefferson Jr., Berkeley District 102.
Men of Color Symposium Empowers Young Men to Succeed

Claflin University hosted its Men of Color Symposium on April 18, themed "Empowering Males with the Formula for Success." The event was geared specifically towards young men of color and how they can be a leader or entrepreneur and survive in America. 

Students from Claflin and South Carolina State University's Men 100 and Call Me MISTER groups were in attendance, as well as  students from Manning, Marion and Westwood high schools.

Special guest presenters included Dr. Chezare Warren, assistant professor at Michigan State University; Special Agent Gerod King, public information officer and recruiter for the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives; Mr. Cecil Williams, director of historic preservation at Claflin University; Dr. Eric Brown, associate vice president for student affairs at SC Technical College System, Dr. Rashad Anderson, assistant professor of teacher education at South Carolina State University; and Mr. D'metrius Dew, founder of The PENS Program. 

Dr. Warren, who served as the keynote speaker for the symposium, has authored two books on the subject of the quality of young black men and boys' schooling experiences. His presentation centered around black males and freedom.  "When I think about advancing black male achievement, and achievement of men of color, that work is centered on visioning, dreaming and loving, and freedom doesn't come easy. In fact, it doesn't come at all without some sort of audacious imagination that counters our present suffering," Warren said.

Warren went on to speak on what needs to be done in order to really help black men become "free." "While we're here together, part of our work in building and battling together is in community and political solidarity with those who've demonstrated a commitment to everybody's liberation."

"I hope the students got perspective today on the possibilities for their lives and what they can become," Warren said at the end of the program. "I'm always excited to contribute and lend whatever expertise or experience I have to help others envision themselves in ways they may not otherwise."
Student Spotlight - Stephon Boykin
Stephon Boykin, a junior history and African American studies major, was awarded a 2019 Library Preservation Internship with the Library of Congress by the HBCU Library Alliance. Out of 26 students representing 15 HBCUs,  Boykin was chosen for one of the seven available internships.
The Winterthur/University of Delaware Program in Art Conservation, in partnership with the HBCU Library Alliance, has received a second round of funding to coordinate seven fully-funded, eight-week summer internships in library and archives preservation in 2019 at seven nationally recognized library preservation/conservation laboratories. 

Interns will receive a cost-of-living stipend, funds for travel, and assistance arranging travel and housing accommodations. Summer internships will take place between June 1 and August 15, 2019, with exact dates to be decided
upon by the intern and their host site.
Student Spotlight - Eric Favor Jr.
Under his platform "Cultivate A New Vision," Eric Favor Jr., Claflin University's 16th Mister Claflin, started the initiative,  Cultivating The Community. An initiative centered around community service, philanthropy, and environmental awareness, Favor said he wanted to leave something for his successor and for the university to use not only to help better the environment, but for students to use as an avenue for  community service. On April  4,  2019,  Favor adopted a highway. "I'm so elated to be able to give something back to the place that has given me so many  opportunities," he said. On April 13, Favor and other Claflin students, went out to to the highway and cleaned debris from the area. 
Countdown to 2019 Commencement Week Activities

Click here  for an outline of all activities for Graduation Week (May 6-11) including a schedule of events, speakers, hotels, directions, and more.
Alumni News
Rev. Calvin Alston Jr., '79, has been appointed to serve as the Shawnee Valley District superintendent. This appointment is effective July 1, 2019. Alston has served the last seven years as pastor of Christ United Methodist Church, a multicultural and multiracial congregation on the East Side of Columbus. For nine years, he was senior pastor of New Vision Church in Cincinnati. Ordained in the South Carolina Annual Conference, Alston served the North Orangeburg Church and a four-point charge in Ehrhardt, South Carolina. A United States Navy veteran, he has served The United Methodist Church on the local, district, annual, jurisdictional and general church levels. In the South Carolina Conference, he chaired the Board of Congregational Development, served as vice chairman of the conference credit union and was treasurer of Black Methodists for Church Renewal. In the West Ohio Conference, he was BMCR vice chairman.

Pamela Nash Davenport, '79, was recently featured on University of South Carolina's College of Information and Communications' websiteDavenport is a network consultant for the Library of Congress' National Library Service for the Blind and Physically Handicapped. In the spotlight, Davenport credits Claflin with her career choice. " During undergraduate studies, I attended Claflin University and had a work-study job in the library. A group of Claflin librarians felt it was their appointed duty to recruit librarians of color who could one day take their place. Thus, I  was anointed by those librarians. So, with their encouragement and blessings,  I pursued my library career. At first I ran away from it, and after college, my very first real job was in a public library. I am pleased to say that a few of them got to see that I followed the path and became a librarian - they were so proud. I also have to admit that in keeping with that tradition, I too have made several librarians along the way."

Dr. Lucile Stephens Richardson, '69, curriculum consultant, author, writer, and minister, was featured on "Supernatural Woman" Facebook page.  "Supernatural Woman" is designed to inspire, empower and promote growth for women through Christ from the inside out. Dr. Richardson  has provided educational consulting in public and private schools, universities, and organizations in the USA, China, Hong Kong, Papua New Guinea, The Philippines, South Africa, Australia, and The Bahamas. Dr. Richardson became the first black full-time professor at BIOLA University in California where she became the head of their Education Division. She was also recognized as Who's Who among America's Outstanding University Professors.

The Orangeburg County Alumni Chapter of CUIAA will have its annual Alumni and Friends breakfast on Saturday, May 18, at 9 a.m., in the Jonas T. Kennedy Health and Wellness Complex. The speaker for the occasion will be President Henry N. Tisdale. Tickets for the event are $25 and can be secured by calling (803) 920-4503 or (803) 533-1828.
Panther Pride
Goins Picks Up Third CIAA Defensive Player of the Week Honor

Claflin University freshman catcher Marion Goins  has been selected as the CIAA Defensive Player of the Week. The weekly honors were announced by the league office on Monday, April 22.
Goins finished the week with 10 putouts and two assists with no errors and no stolen bases allowed. The first-year player finished with a 1.000 fielding percentage while also contributing two RBI and two hits, including her first career collegiate home run to help the Panthers finish the regular season undefeated in the CIAA at 18-0. 
Claflin closed out its 2019 regular season on Tuesday, April 23, with a double header loss to Augusta University.  The Lady Panthers will now turn their attention to the CIAA post-season tournament scheduled for April 29-May 1, in Salem, Va.

Claflin Softball Falls to Augusta Final Regular Season Game

The Claflin University softball team closed out its 2019 regular season with a doubleheader loss to Augusta University, Tuesday, April 23, at the Adden Street Field in Orangeburg. The Lady Panthers fell to the Jaguars 8-0 in game one and 4-0 in game two. MORE
April 24, 2019
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@Claflin is published by the Office of Communications & Marketing 
President: Dr. Henry N. Tisdale, '65
Vice President for Institutional Advancement: Rev. Dr. Whittaker V. Middleton, '73
Assistant Vice President for Communications & Marketing: George Johnson Jr.
Public Relations Director: J. Craig Cotton
Public Relations/Social Media Coordinator: Charnita Mack
Web Communications Manager: Colin Myers, '07
Sports Information Director: Romanda Noble-Watson
Photographers: Cecil Williams, '60, Geoff Henderson and Colin Myers, '07