Award Winners Announced at Commencement

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Publication Date: 5/14/2008


Annual awards were presented at the 159th Commencement Exercises of Rhodes College on May 10. Francesca Marites Davis, Brian Thomas Darrith and Professor Julia “Cookie” Ewing received the 2008 Algernon Sydney Sullivan Awards. The awards are presented annually to two graduating seniors (one male and one female) and one non-student who have given selflessly to others and the college.

Davis of Memphis, Tenn., graduated with a bachelor of arts degree in psychology. Darrith of St. Simons Island, Ga., graduated cum laude with a bachelor of science degree in neuroscience and was inducted into Phi Beta Kappa. Both Davis and Darrith were named to the Rhodes Hall of Fame. Julia “Cookie” Ewing is professor of theatre at Rhodes and has served the McCoy Theatre for more than 30 years.

The Distinguished Service Medal was presented to Dr. Charles Robinson ’65, founder of NanoDrop Technologies who established the Dr. Jack H. Taylor Fellowship in Physics and The Dr. Charles W. Robertson, Jr. Endowment for Student Research and Engagement in Physics at Rhodes. The medal expresses Rhodes’ appreciation and pays tribute to Robinson’s leadership, service and commitment to lifelong learning. 

Joan Elizabeth Campbell of Mobile, Ala., received the Peyton Nalle Rhodes Phi Beta Kappa Prize given to the graduating senior who exemplifies the highest qualities of scholarship. Campbell graduated magna cum laude with a bachelor of arts degree in French and music. In addition, Campbell was inducted into Phi Beta Kappa.

Dr. Benjamin L. Hooks, who has had an extensive career as an ordained minister, attorney, judge, and civil rights leader, received the Honorary Doctor of Humanities degree.