October 20, 2006

Good Morning:

Since Katrina Tulane University students, faculty and staff have assumed a greater role as community leaders. This was evident in a number of high-profile ways this week.

On Monday, Tulane architecture students unveiled the first of four homes they are designing and building for low-to-moderate income residents in post-Katrina New Orleans. You can read more about this inspiring story at

On Tuesday, I was in Chicago for the "Campus Compact Visioning Summit," where Tulane was honored with several national awards. We were one of only three universities in the nation to win the President's Higher Education Community Service Award For Excellence in Hurricane Relief Service, one of 10 finalists for the President's Higher Education Community Service Award For Excellence in General Community Service and we were designated as a Program with Distinction for General Community Service.

At the same summit, Sonia Schwartz, the chair of the Community Action Council of University Students (CACTUS) received the Howard R. Swearer Student Humanitarian Award. Sonia was honored for organizing more than 2,000 Tulane students, as well as more than 800 volunteers from other universities around the country, to work during their winter and spring breaks with New Orleans neighborhood associations to repopulate and rebuild the city.

We also learned this week that Sharon Courtney, our assistant vice president for Government Affairs, was named as a Role Model by the Young Leadership Council. Sharon was designated for this honor for her instrumental role in helping secure funds to advance higher education in the New Orleans area post-Katrina.

And finally, we learned that Yvette Jones, chief operating officer and senior vice president for external affairs and Karen DeSalvo, associate professor and chief of general internal medicine and geriatrics, were selected by New Orleans CityBusiness as "Women of the Year." Both were chosen for their critical role in the continued recovery of Tulane and the health care industry of New Orleans.

While extremely worthy of individual praise, the Tulanians honored this week are really representatives of the whole Tulane community that, day after day, is a major force in the recovery of our city. Please join me in congratulating our colleagues and the many unsung heroes of our recovery.

Have a great weekend,


Office of the President Emeritus, 1555 Poydras St, Suite 700, New Orleans, LA 70112 504-274-3638