UM Pharmacy Student Accepts Internship at Mayo Clinic

Anna Crider hopes to use experience to move into critical-care role

Anna Crider, a UM senior and first-year pharmacy student, has accepted an offer to intern this summer at the Mayo Clinic in its clinical pharmacy department in Rochester, Minnesota. Photo by UM School of Pharmacy.

OXFORD, Miss. – Anna Crider, a first-year pharmacy student at the University of Mississippi, has accepted a pharmacy inpatient internship through the Mayo Clinic School of Health Sciences in Rochester, Minnesota.

Mayo Clinic and St. Mary’s Hospital in Rochester partner to give interns exposure to clinical pharmacy while they gain a better understanding of the pharmacist’s role and intervention in the hospital setting.

“The coursework and the rigor of it at our pharmacy school have really made me confident in my ability to say ‘Yes, I can compete on a national level across all pharmacy schools,'” said Crider, a native of Brentwood, Tennessee.

During the 10-week internship, Crider will spend time collecting medical histories of patients and work under pharmacists in the central dispensing unit.

Crider’s academic and thesis adviser, Erin Holmes, credits this internship offer to the extensive education at the UM School of Pharmacy.

“The Mayo Clinic pharmacy internship is, without question, one of the most prestigious summer internship programs in the country,” Holmes said. “For one of our students to be selected for this internship validates the high standards expected in our program and quality of our training.

“Anna is truly deserving of this opportunity, as she is extremely bright, very hardworking, has a passion for learning and is always seeking ways to grow professionally.”

Crider is a member of the Sally McDonnell Barksdale Honors College, where she is working on her thesis, “Mississippi Pharmacists’ Perceptions and Knowledge of ADHD in Children.”

Aside from her role as a first-year pharmacy student, Crider works as a pharmacy technician in the Oxford community. She is also active in community service organizations such as Relay for Life and RebelTHON.

A senior, Crider is on track to graduate with a bachelor’s degree in pharmaceutical sciences in May. She plans to pursue a critical-care pharmacy role in a clinical setting after completing her residency.

“I hope to be able to serve patients and be an advocate for them in their time of need,” she said.

For more information on the UM School of Pharmacy, call 662-915-7267 or visit http://pharmacy.olemiss.edu/.

UM Alumnus Endows Business Scholarship

Man who helped launch Orville Redenbacher hopes to help mentor Ole Miss marketing students

Lyt Harris, pictured here on vacation at the Baltic Sea port of Warnemunde, Germany, has pledged to increase his scholarship endowment for the UM School of Business Administration to $100,000. Submitted photo

OXFORD, Miss. – Years ago, after spotting the potential for great success in a small-town popcorn grower, University of Mississippi alumnus Lyt Harris helped make Orville Redenbacher a national sensation.

Recognizing the same potential in business students, Harris of Houston, Texas, has established endowments at Ole Miss and three other universities that he trusts will help his scholarship recipients achieve success.

“I’m just looking forward to getting the endowed scholarship program moving forward at Ole Miss and especially hearing from, and hopefully meeting, some of the students who receive the scholarships,” said Harris, a native of Baton Rouge, Louisiana, and 1962 graduate of the UM School of Business Administration.

Harris established his UM endowment in August 2016 with a $27,000 gift. He recently pledged to increase the endowment to $100,000, allowing the business school to award scholarships from it in perpetuity.

This gift designates Harris as a charter member of the 1917 Order, created this year and named for the year the business school was founded. The order recognizes generous donors who thoughtfully provide for the school through major giving.

About 10 years ago, Harris funded a similar scholarship program at Northwood University in Michigan, an all-business education university, where he received an honorary Doctor of Laws degree and served on the board of trustees. He and his late wife, Venita, contributed to the fund regularly.

“Really, that was such a good program and I received such good feedback from the students selected for the scholarship that I thought, ‘Why not set up a similar scholarship at the University of Colorado, where Venita went to school, and also at Ole Miss and LSU, where I went to school?'” Harris said.

“Shortly after the fund was established at Colorado, I met my student and became good friends with him. He was very appreciative. It wasn’t the amount of money he received; he was just so amazed that he was selected for the award out of a number of students in the economics department who could have received it.”

After completing graduate school at Louisiana State University in 1963, Harris rose through the ranks of Scott Paper Co., where he became project manager for the first disposable diapers, which he took from test market to national distribution. Later, he joined a large division of Hunt Wesson Foods as director of marketing.

On a business trip to Chicago, Harris and his colleagues visited Marshall Fields department store, where they spotted a Mason jar of popcorn labeled “with a picture of a funny little man with a bowtie,” he said, adding that a manager told them the product had become a best-seller in the store.

Intrigued, Harris conducted an extensive laboratory test at Hunt Wesson and found the product to be all that Redenbacher claimed and more.

“So we went and contacted Orville in person and said, ‘You’ve come up with this strain of corn that everybody likes, and we’re marketing experts,'” Harris recalled. “‘If we get together, we can do some great things and probably make you the Colonel Sanders of the popcorn business.’ That’s exactly what we ended up doing.”

Today, Orville Redenbacher’s popcorn is the nation’s No. 1-selling brand.

“If he’d never met us and we’d never met him, it probably would have never happened. He wasn’t a marketing person at all. He was just having fun with it and didn’t realize its potential.”

After Hunt Wesson, Harris worked several years as a senior executive in the banking and finance industry before moving to Houston in 1982 to become president and eventually CEO of Southwest Management and Marketing Co. There, he met his wife in 1984 at an art exhibition; both were avid collectors.

Harris sold his company and retired in 2004. He serves as managing partner of the Harris Investment Partnership, specializing in venture capital investments including specialty foods, residential real estate, drug and alcohol rehabilitation centers and other projects.

Always active in civic and charitable activities, Harris has served on the boards of a number of nonprofit organizations, including The Kidney Foundation, Junior Achievement, Boy Scouts of America, Big Brothers/Big Sisters and St. Luke’s United Methodist Church. During his business career, he was listed in Who’s Who in America, Who’s Who in Finance and Industry and Who’s Who in the South and Southwest.

He has served as a mentor for MBA students at the Ole Miss business school and was named an Otho Smith Fellow in 2008. He is also a mentor for middle and high school students in the Spring Branch Independent School District in Houston.

At Ole Miss, he was a member of the University Players theater company, Delta Sigma Pi business fraternity and Sigma Alpha Epsilon social fraternity.

“I enjoyed the whole college experience and being in such a beautiful setting as the university and the Oxford area,” he said. “It was a great environment for learning and for going to school and enjoying a large variety of activities. Hopefully, setting up the scholarship program will allow me to come back to the campus more often for things connected with it.”

The Lyttleton T. Harris IV Endowed Scholarship is available to full-time students in the School of Business Administration who are marketing majors and have a minimum 3.0 grade-point average.

“Mr. Harris’s generous gifts encompass the scope of work we do here by meeting the financial needs of students who want to pursue an education in business,” said Ken Cyree, UM business dean. “We are especially pleased that this gift will be part of the 1917 Order, which is part of the 100-year celebration of the founding of the School of Business, and will allow for the expansion of our success during the next 100 years.”

The Lyttleton T. Harris IV Endowed Scholarship is open to gifts from individuals and organizations. To contribute, send checks with the endowment name noted in the memo line to the University of Mississippi Foundation, 406 University Ave., University, MS 38655; visit http://www.umfoundation.com/makeagift; or contact Tim Noss at 662-915-5932 or tlnoss@olemiss.edu.

UM Pharmacy Administrator Named APhA Fellow

Award honors service to the pharmacy profession

Leigh Ann Ross

OXFORD, Miss. – Leigh Ann Ross, associate dean for clinical affairs at the University of Mississippi School of Pharmacy, is being named a 2017 fellow by the American Pharmacists Association this weekend.

The designation honors those with a history of exemplary service and achievement in the pharmacy profession for at least 10 years. Ross will receive the award Saturday (March 25) at the APhA annual meeting in San Francisco.

Ross is also a professor of pharmacy practice and research professor in the Research Institute of Pharmaceutical Sciences at the pharmacy school. She earned both her bachelor’s degree and Pharm.D. from Ole Miss and completed a primary care pharmacy residency at the UM Medical Center in Jackson.

“The School of Pharmacy is very proud to call Dr. Ross one of its leaders,” said David D. Allen, UM pharmacy dean. “She has served the profession and the school extremely well for many years, and I applaud her on this honor.”

Ross previously served as the director of the university’s Pharmaceutical Care Services from 2000 to 2008, during which time the pharmaceutical care clinics won a Best Practice Award from the American Society of Health-System Pharmacists. She went on to be the chair of the school’s Department of Pharmacy Practice from 2008 to 2016.

Besides her service to the school, Ross is director of the Community-Based Research Program which implements direct patient care services in community pharmacies and clinics in the Mississippi Delta. She served as a policy adviser to U.S. Sen. Thad Cochran on health care, labor, housing and economic development after completing a two-year congressional fellowship.

She also has held leadership positions in many state and national pharmacy organizations.

“It is truly an honor to be recognized by APhA as a fellow,” Ross said. “I’m most appreciative of the mentorship that has been provided and the friendships that have been developed through my involvement in APhA. I look forward to many more years of service in APhA and pharmacy.”

Nominations Sought for Annual Frist Awards

UM honor recognizes outstanding service to students

Brandi Hephner LaBanc, UM vice chancellor for student affairs, presents Brett Cantrell, assistant professor of accountancy, with his Frist Award at the 2016 Commencement. Photo by Thomas Graning/Ole Miss Communications

OXFORD, Miss. – Being away from home and their familiar support systems, college students often encounter difficulties, but at the University of Mississippi, faculty and staff members often step in to lend a helping hand or simply provide advice and encouragement.

These efforts often go unacknowledged, other than the students’ gratitude and success. But students, parents, alumni, faculty and staff can formally recognize those who have truly “gone the extra mile” to help students by nominating them for the Thomas Frist Student Service Award.

“This university is composed of so many faculty and staff who go above and beyond to help students,” said Anne McCauley, UM assistant director of sustainability who won the honor in 2015. “Each student could probably name at least one person who has made a real impact on his or her life, and we hope to capture everyone’s attention about the nomination process to encourage students to nominate that person, whether it be an office, custodial, support staff, counselor, student organization adviser, mentor, coordinator or faculty member.”

Students, alumni, friends, faculty and staff can submit nominations for the annual awards online through April 3. Any full-time faculty or staff member, except previous winners, is eligible for the award, which includes a $1,000 prize and a plaque.

Written and submitted by individuals, nominations can be entered at http://www.olemiss.edu/frist_award/. Past nominations also may be considered.

Nominations should not focus on classroom teaching or tutoring efforts. Letters that cite only teaching-related activities may not be considered for the award.

The Elsie M. Hood Outstanding Teaching Award, announced at the annual Honors Day convocation, recognizes excellence in that area.

The nomination narrative should differentiate between obligation and service by citing specific examples in which the person being nominated has gone beyond the call of duty to help a student or group of students.

“Many of our faculty and staff go above and beyond the call of duty to demonstrate their commitment to students,” Chancellor Jeffrey Vitter said. “It is a privilege to honor two such individuals each year who provide such an example for us all.”

All nominees are notified that they have been so honored, and a campus committee appointed by the chancellor chooses the winners. Awards are to be presented May 13 at UM’s spring Commencement.

The 2015 Frist winners were Brett Cantrell, assistant professor of accountancy, and Lindsey Bartlett Mosvick, assistant director of the Office of Violence Prevention in the University Counseling Center

Previous recipients include current faculty members Aileen Ajootian, Luca Bombelli, Don Cole, Charles Eagles, Ellen Meacham, Terry Panhorst, Ken Sufka and Eric Weber; and current staff members Thelma Curry, Carol Forsythe, Dewey Knight, Ginger Patterson, Valeria Ross, Amy Saxton, Marc Showalter and Linda Spargo.

The Frist Student Service Awards were established with a $50,000 gift from the late Dr. Thomas F. Frist of Nashville, a 1930 UM graduate.

For more information or to submit a nomination, visit http://www.olemiss.edu/frist_award/.

UM Students to Present Research at Capitol for Posters in the Rotunda

Four University of Mississippi students are among undergraduates from all eight of the state’s public universities who will share their research and creative activities on topics ranging from health care to cultural heritage to environmental issues with legislators and state leaders at Posters in the Rotunda.

The event is set for 7:30-9:30 a.m. Thursday (March 23) in the rotunda of the state Capitol. The students will show how their research addresses some of Mississippi’s most pressing problems.

The event provides opportunities for legislators to visit with students from their districts, allows students to network with one other as they learn about work on other campuses, and showcases cutting-edge research conducted by undergraduates that benefits the entire state and its residents.

“Posters in the Rotunda epitomizes both the diversity and high quality of the scholarship being done by students and their faculty mentors,” said Marie Danforth, chair of the steering committee for the Drapeau Center for Undergraduate Research at the University of Southern Mississippi and coordinator of the event.

“This year, we’ve been able to expand the event to include more undergraduates from each university. Two students representing Mississippi INBRE, a statewide program focusing on biomedical research, are also participating.”

Ole Miss students participating in the event are:

  • Jarett Bell, presenting “Evaluating the Land Use Land Cover Change in the Coastal Watersheds of Mississippi”
  • Nathaniel Greene, “Giving Wings But Keeping Them Clipped: The Relationship Between Overprotective Parenting and Student Psychological Well-Being During the Transition to College”
  • Heather Poole, “Improving Health of Rural Mississippians through Farmers’ Markets”
  • Sarah Sutton, “Spectroscopic and Computational Study of Chlorine Dioxide/Water Interactions”

Modeled after the Posters on the Hill event in which students from across the country share their work in the U.S. Capitol in Washington, D.C., the Posters in the Rotunda event is similar to ones in 17 other states.

“I am so pleased that the Posters in the Rotunda event has been expanded to include even more students for its second year,” said Glenn Boyce, commissioner of higher education. “This is an excellent program that highlights the value of undergraduate research and the impact university research has on solving Mississippi’s most pressing problems.

“Participating in undergraduate research projects provides a great experience for the students, strengthening their academic, leadership and presentation skills and preparing them for research on the graduate level.”

More information on the Posters in the Rotunda event is available at http://postersintherotundams.org.

Susan Duncan Named UM Law School Dean

Experienced leader and administrator brings entrepreneurial approach

Susan Duncan

OXFORD, Miss. – After a national search, Susan Duncan has been chosen as the new dean of the University of Mississippi School of Law. She is scheduled to join the university Aug. 1, pending approval by the Board of Trustees of State Institutions of Higher Education.

“I am thrilled and deeply honored to be joining a law school with such a rich tradition and positive momentum,” Duncan said. “I look forward to being part of the Ole Miss family and am excited to help take the law school to new heights.”

Duncan joins UM from the University of Louisville Brandeis School of Law, where she served as interim dean from 2012 to 2017 and on the faculty since 1997. The Louisville, Kentucky, native is widely recognized in the field for her entrepreneurial approach, ability to connect to various aspects of the practice of law, deep understanding of national trends and opportunities, energetic fundraising and commitment to working across campus.

“We are extremely pleased to have such an accomplished scholar and practitioner to lead the law school,” Chancellor Jeffrey Vitter said. “Ms. Duncan is well-respected by students and faculty alike and has a proven track record of successful leadership, particularly in the area of fundraising. She will be instrumental in guiding our law school to higher rankings and a greater role in Mississippi.”

Duncan has received numerous honors and recognitions. The Kentucky Bar Association presented her with the 2016 President’s Special Service Award, and in 2014, the Louis D. Brandeis School of Law Alumni Council presented her with the Distinguished Alumni Award.

Also in 2014, Duncan was named one of the top 20 people to know in the field of education by Business First. In 2010, the Louisville Bar Association presented her its Distinguished Service Award.

Debbie Bell, who has served as interim dean at UM for two years, will continue in that role until July 31.

“We are grateful to Debbie Bell for her outstanding leadership of the law school for the past two years,” said Noel Wilkin, interim provost and executive vice chancellor. “She was able to galvanize our commitment to law education and guide our school through a challenging period of transition. She did this with determination, professionalism, confidence and an unwavering commitment to law education.”

Duncan holds a J.D. from the Brandeis School of Law and a bachelor’s degree from Miami University in Oxford, Ohio. She has lectured internationally, including at the University of Montpellier, France, University KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa, Johannes Gutenberg University, in Mainz, Germany, at the University of Leeds, England, and the University of Turku, Finland.

Besides numerous scholarly presentations, she has authored or co-authored dozens of publications on a variety of legal topics.

At the University of Louisville, Duncan was well-respected as a caring, committed leader as well as an accomplished fundraiser, dramatically increasing donations from Brandeis alumni and overcoming budgetary challenges that preceded her. In 2016, her fundraising efforts were recognized with the William J. Rothwell Faculty Award from the Office of Advancement.

“In addition to her accomplishments as an academic, she has a proven ability to work with law faculty, staff, students and alumni to accomplish shared goals,” Wilkin said. “This ability is more important than ever, given the current issues faced by law schools, and we expect Ms. Duncan will help our school achieve new and unprecedented success.”

Donors Underwrite Southern Foodways Alliance’s ‘Gravy’

Major gift will allow UM center to continue telling stories of the region through its food

Brook and Pam Smith at Castle & Key Distillery, where the couple are partners, outside Frankfort, Kentucky. Photo by Steven Freeman

OXFORD, Miss. – Knowing the unifying qualities of food, Brook and Pam Smith of Louisville, Kentucky, have pledged $1 million to support “Gravy,” a podcast produced by the Southern Foodways Alliance at the University of Mississippi.

“Folks in different places appreciate when someone from one cultural segment takes the time to dine with others from a different cultural segment,” Brook Smith said. “It’s a show of respect and appreciation for a culture that may be different from their own, and that’s what we seem to be missing in our country today.”

Whenever the Smiths travel, they try to meet members of the Southern Foodways Alliance along the way. A member-supported nonprofit institute of the UM Center for the Study of Southern Culture, the SFA sponsors scholarships, mentors students, stages symposia, collects and shares oral histories, and produces and publishes books, podcasts and films.

On a recent trip to visit Pam’s family in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina, the Smiths detoured to Hemingway, South Carolina, where Scott’s Bar-B-Q, praised by The New York Times, attracts customers from hundreds of miles away.

“My whole life has been barbecue,” said pitmaster Rodney Scott, who just opened his own barbecue restaurant in nearby Charleston, South Carolina. “I grew up doing it, hanging around it and hanging around other people that do it. And there’s just no other way to bring people in quicker. It’s like a beacon sign; it just draws them right in there.”

That spirit drew in the Smiths. So did the storytelling work of the SFA.

“‘Gravy,’ which was awarded publication of the year in 2015 by the prestigious James Beard Foundation, shares stories of the changing American South through the foods we eat,” said John T. Edge, SFA director. “‘Gravy’ showcases a South that is constantly evolving.

“We use food as a means to complicate stereotypes, document new dynamics and give voice to the often unsung folk who grow, cook and serve our daily meals.”

Edge is grateful for the Smiths’ generous gift.

“This sort of long-term commitment offers funding stability so that the SFA can take risks to tell stories in new and bold ways,” Edge said. “At a moment when ‘Gravy’ recently delivered its 1 millionth download, Brook and Pam have invested deeply in our most scalable and sharable effort.

“They are long-time members of the organization who know and respect the role that food plays in the cultural life of our nation.”

Smith found success in the surety bonding business. He’s also a wine and distillery owner as well as a philanthropist with an interest in organizations that focus on improving life for young people and those like the SFA, which inspires communities to invest in their culinary customs and, in so doing, establishes lasting, cross-cultural relationships.

Smith also has an ongoing commitment to Appalachian Kentucky and recently established a private philanthropic fund focused on economic development in the region that includes an interest in development driven by local mountain food traditions and small-scale farming.

He and Pam have three sons: Reed, 21; Mac, 18; and Grayson, 16.

Before establishing the Smith Family Gravy Boat Fund, the Smiths donated $250,000 in 2014 to support the SFA’s Smith Symposium Fellows program, which invites individuals whose work promises a positive impact on the South to be guests at the SFA’s fall symposium.

Brook Smith trusts his gift will boost operating funds, enabling the organization to better document, study and explore the diverse food cultures of the American South.

“Food starts conversations,” he said “You get into who makes it and where the products come from. It’s an ice breaker.

“People talk about the weather, but talking about barbecue is a lot more interesting.”

Private gifts are crucial to the university’s well-being and especially to programs such as the SFA, which depend on donor support to operate, UM Chancellor Jeffrey Vitter said.

“We are tremendously grateful to receive generous donations, especially from such passionate supporters as the Smiths,” Vitter said. “It speaks to the impact of our university programs, not just in the state, but across the country and around the world.

“The Smiths’ gift will ensure that many more people will be enriched by the SFA for years to come. These kinds of contributions are a vital part of our university’s sustained growth, reach, impact and success.”

Individuals and organizations can make gifts to support the Southern Foodways Alliance or the Center for the Study of Southern Culture by mailing a check with the endowment noted to the University of Mississippi Foundation, 406 University Ave., Oxford, MS 38655; visiting http://www.umfoundation.com/makeagift or contacting Nikki Neely Davis, development officer for the CSSC at 662-915-6678 or nlneely@olemiss.edu.

Download “Gravy” for free from the iTunes store and the SFA website. For more information, visit http://www.southernfoodways.org and follow on Twitter @Potlikker.

Dennis Moore Named as Silver Em Honoree

Annual award is most prestigious journalism honor given by UM

Dennis Moore

OXFORD, Miss. – Dennis Moore, whose career in journalism has led him back to Jackson as co-editor of Mississippi Today, has been tapped as this year’s Samuel Talbert Silver Em recipient by the Meek School of Journalism and New Media at the University of Mississippi.

The award, named for an early department chairman and leader in journalism education, is the most prestigious journalism honor the university bestows. Moore is the 58th honoree in the recognition limited to native Mississippians or journalists who have spent a significant part of their careers in the state. Selection is based on careers exemplifying the highest ideals of American journalism.

“Dennis’ career is an expression of the quality of his performance as an undergraduate at Ole Miss,” said Will Norton, dean of the university’s Meek School of Journalism and New Media. “He has performed at an exceptional level of excellence.”

Moore began his reporting career after graduation at The Clarion-Ledger, but his experience started earlier at The Germantown News in Germantown, Tennessee.

“I made a blind call to the editor and asked if I could work there,” Moore said. “She said I was welcome to drop in on production nights, but they could not pay.”

He went, worked and learned. More experience was gained through an internship with Southern Living magazine.

In Jackson, Moore, a movie fan, was allowed an extra assignment to write one review per week. When the city landed the International Ballet Competition, he was assigned to provide coverage, gaining more exposure and experience to writing about the arts and entertainment.

His success took him to The Orlando Sentinel to direct its arts coverage and edit the newspaper’s award-winning Sunday magazine, Florida.

USA Today was next, and Moore advanced to managing editor of the Life section. In that role, he traveled and routinely met with celebrities, including forming a real admiration for Steven Spielberg and being nervous before talking with Mick Jagger. He was also pleased when John Grisham reported that his mother had appreciated a story Moore had written about the author.

Moore lists his interview with Octavia Spencer, who won an Oscar for her work in “The Help” as his favorite actor interview.

An abrupt change came when Moore became breaking news editor for USA Today. In that role, he guided the coverage of Ebola in Africa and the United States, the violence and protests in Ferguson, Missouri, the trial of a Boston Marathon bomber and the 50th anniversary of “Bloody Sunday” at the Edmund Pettis Bridge in Selma, Alabama.

Moore was with USA Today during the development of its internet presence. In his newest position, he joined Fred Anklam, also a USA Today veteran, previous Silver Em recipient and Ole Miss graduate, in launching an all-digital news service based in the state capital and devoted to nonpartisan reporting on Mississippi issues.

Mississippi Today is “true startup from creating a website to hiring reporters to introducing the new concept to readers,” More said. The online publication has seed grants from several national foundations with the purpose of informing the public about education, health, economic growth and culture.

The Silver Em presentation will take place during the Best of Meek dinner April 5 in the ballroom of the Inn at Ole Miss. For more information, contact the Meek School at meekschool@olemiss.edu.

Celebrate the Written Word at the Oxford Conference for the Book

Three-day event set for March 29-31

OXFORD, Miss. – For those who relish getting lost in a good story, the 24th annual Oxford Conference for the Book is an opportunity to gather with authors, editors and scholars.

On March 29-31, the conference at the University of Mississippi, which is free and open to the public, includes readings, panel discussions and lectures by award-winning writers and first-time novelists.

“Oxford is an incredible community for writers and readers alike,” said James G. Thomas Jr., conference director. “I’m happy that the Center for the Study of Southern Culture and Square Books continue to partner to bring this diversity of ideas and wealth of talent to the community. There’s certainly something for everyone this year.”

Events will take place across the Ole Miss campus and in Oxford. The conference begins with a welcome luncheon at 11 a.m., sponsored by the Friends of the Library, in the Faulkner Room of the Department of Archives and Special Collections at the J.D. Williams Library, followed by a lecture by Jay Satterfield, special collections librarian at the Rauner Special Collections Library at Dartmouth College, at 11:30 a.m.

Lisa Lucas. Photo courtesy Beowulf Sheehan

Satterfield, who was in Oxford for the 2015 Faulkner Conference, said some of the ideas he first presented then have new relevance for writers trying to navigate the shifting landscape of today’s publishing world, and he is looking forward to exploring those ideas in a new context.

“I will discuss the skillful and timely marketing strategies Random House employed to re-establish the Faulkner brand, a brand that would later help to cement Faulkner’s place in the American literary canon,” Satterfield said.

Other panels on March 29 and 30 take place at the Overby Center for Southern Journalism and Politics, the University Museum and Southside Gallery. The closing day’s panels take place in the historic Lafayette County Courthouse.

Conference panels explore a wide range of topics, including nature writing, African-American cookbooks, the life and work of Harry Crews, working with an editor, literature as activism and the National Book Award. The full lineup and registration for social events is at https://oxfordconferenceforthebook.com/.

George Gibson, executive director at Grove Atlantic, reflects on the process between editor and author during his more than 40 years in the business during a panel at 1:15 p.m. March 29.

“I’m thrilled to be coming to the conference, as it brings together all the constituencies in the book world in a storied location in American letters,” Gibson said.

Lee Boudreaux

This year’s participants also include poets Ann Fisher-Wirth, Aimee Nezhukumatathil, Beth Ann Fennelly, Carolyn Hembree, Alison Pelegrin and Rodney Jones; memoirist J. Drew Lanham; biographers Carolyn J. Brown and Ted Geltner; documentary filmmaker Tom Thurman; American studies professor Sharon Monteith; art historian Beth Batton; UM English professor Annette Trefzer; Lisa Lucas, executive director of the National Book Foundation; foodways writer Toni Tipton-Martin; Lee Boudreaux, editorial director of Lee Boudreaux Books; journalist David Shirley; novelists Peter Heller, Beth Macy, Hari Kunzru and Michael Farris Smith; and comedian-writers Trae “The Liberal Redneck” Crowder, Drew Morgan and Corey Ryan Forrester.

On the evening of March 29, the gala opening-night cocktail reception and dinner begins at 6:30 p.m. at the historic Barksdale-Isom House, 1003 Jefferson Ave., with food provided by James Beard award-winning chef John Currence’s Main Event Catering.

The conference is parterning with the University Museum again this year to include a session paired with an art exhibition. On the afternoon of March 30, the museum will host a session with Carolyn J. Brown, who wrote painter Kate Freeman Clark’s biography, art historian Beth Batton, and co-curators of an upcoming exhibition on Freeman’s work, James G. Thomas Jr., associate director of publications at CSSC, and Annette Trefzer, UM associate professor of English.

George Gibson

An opening reception for the exhibition and book signing by Brown will follow the session.

As in years past, Thacker Mountain Radio will host a special Oxford Conference for the Book show at 6 p.m. March 30 at the Lyric Theater, 1006 Van Buren Ave., including conference authors and visiting musicians.

Two new special events are planned for this year. At 8 p.m. March 30, a screening of Tom Thurman’s documentary “Harry Crews: Guilty as Charged” is set for Lamar Hall, Room 129.

On the closing night, the conference brings the wellRED Comedy Tour to the Lyric Theatre. Earlier that day, Trae “The Liberal Redneck” Crowder, Drew Morgan and Corey Ryan Forrester will discuss their new book, “The Liberal Redneck Manifesto.”

The film screening and reading are free, but tickets are required for the comedy show.

The 2017 Children’s Book Festival, held in conjunction with the Oxford Conference for the Book, will be March 31 at the Gertrude C. Ford Center for Performing Arts, with more than 1,200 first-graders and fifth-graders from the schools of Lafayette County and Oxford in attendance. Chris Van Dusen, author of “If I Built a Car,” will present at 9 a.m. for the first-graders, and Chris Grabenstein, author of “Escape from Mr. Lemoncello’s Library,” will present at 10:30 a.m. for the fifth-graders.

Peter Heller. Photo courtesy John Burcham

The Lafayette County Literacy Council sponsors the first-grade program and the Junior Auxiliary of Oxford sponsors the fifth-grade program. All 1,200 children receive a copy of each book.

At noon March 31, the Lafayette County and Oxford Public Library will host a poetry talk and lunch with poet Alison Pelegrin. Both the lunch and talk are free, but reservations are appreciated.

The Oxford Conference for the Book is sponsored by the Center for the Study of Southern Culture, Square Books, University Museum, Lafayette County Literacy Council, J. D. Williams Library, Overby Center for Southern Journalism and Politics, John and Renée Grisham Visiting Writers Fund, Junior Auxiliary of Oxford, and the Lafayette County and Oxford Public Library.

The conference is partially funded by the university, a contribution from the R&B Feder Foundation for the Beaux Arts, grants from the Mississippi Humanities Council and the Mississippi Arts Commission, and promotional support from Visit Oxford.

Mississippi Educator Wins Teacher Travel Fellowship

Award presented by UM Mississippi Geographic Alliance

Steven R. White

OXFORD, Miss. – The Mississippi Geographic Alliance at the University of Mississippi has named Steven R. White as its 2017 Travel Fellow. White teaches Advanced World Geography and Honors World Geography at Pearl High School in Pearl.

White, a National Geographic Certified Educator and MGA teacher consultant, has held numerous education leadership positions in the state, including officer positions in the Mississippi Council for the Social Studies and the Mississippi Geographic Alliance. He was Rosa Scott High School’s Teacher of the Year 2012-13, the Mississippi Council for the Social Studies Teacher of the Year for 2003-04 and winner of the Jesse Palmer Award for Mississippi Social Studies Educator of the Year in 2015.

“We are thrilled that Steven is the 2017 MGA Travel Fellow,” said Carley Lovorn, assistant director of the Mississippi Geographic Alliance. “This is a very competitive fellowship, and Steven now joins a cohort of fellows who are dedicated to improving global awareness in the state.”

The MGA Travel Fellowship is awarded to Mississippi educators who are dedicated to bringing the world to Mississippi students and teachers. Students look to their teachers to help them understand the world, and yet Mississippi has the lowest number of passport holders and teacher salaries near the bottom in the country.

Mississippi’s top geography educators often cite a travel experience as integral to igniting their passion to teach others about our world. Fellowship recipients participate in educator-focused travel programs and then bring their experiences back to the state by sharing the education materials they create with all Mississippi teachers.

White will participate in the National Council for Geographic Education’s GeoCamp Iceland Institute. The institute is a graduate-level equivalent short course in geographic inquiry and field methods for educators who conduct professional development activities for teachers.

Participants will explore important geographic themes, including natural hazards and disaster prevention, human settlement and environmental adaptation, changing geopolitical spheres of influence, sense of place, and global environmental change.

“Years ago, as a high school student I dreamed of being able to travel to the Arctic Circle region to see the breathtaking views and natural wonders of Iceland,” White said. “In my upcoming trip I am excited about the awesome opportunity to hike to explore the amazing natural wonders that will challenge my teaching perspective and inspire my approach to creating classroom lessons about the human and physical geography of this amazing nation.”

White said he intends to share his research with students and colleagues.

“My goal is to create, engage and inspire students to become the effective global citizens of tomorrow,” he said.

In recent years, White has served on staff for the Pre-Service Geography Conference, a geography education conference for education students around the state. He also has served as a judge and scorekeeper for the state-level National Geographic Bee and is a three-time winner of educational and technology grants for enhancing classroom geography education.

He is past president and assistant director of the Mississippi Council for the Social Studies and team leader for public policy for the Mississippi Geographic Alliance. In 2013 he was one of eight in the nation to receive the Distinguished Teaching Award for K-12 educators at the National Conference on Geographic Education.

The Mississippi Geographic Alliance works to strengthen geographic literacy throughout the state. A member of the nationwide network of state alliances sponsored by the National Geographic Society, MGA uses workshops, online resources and other programs to help educators prepare students to embrace a diverse world, succeed in the global economy and steward the planet’s resources.

For more information visit http://www.mga.olemiss.edu or contact Lovorn at mclovorn@olemiss.edu or 662-915-3776.

For more information on the GeoCamp Iceland Institute, go to http://www.ncge.org/geocamp.