A Message from the Chair
Janine Smith '84, MA '86

Good Afternoon Alumni!

It is truly an exciting fall semester at our alma mater. Over 1100 students are currently enrolled! The excitement of these young Fiskites was evident as they participated in campus activities during their first week. The anticipated continued growth in enrollment is underscored by the progress being made in the construction of the new residence hall that is expected to open in 2024.

The appointment of Dr. Agenia Walker Clark as the 18th president of Fisk has been met with great enthusiasm.  Dr. Clark brings a bold new leadership perspective to the university, along with fundraising and branding skills. We wish her well and will lend our support as she leads Fisk into the future.

The General Alumni Association University (GAAFU) continues to be vibrant and active, with local constituent associations engaged in various activities supporting the university and its students. We are grateful to the many alumni who contributed over $82,000 to assist students who were facing difficulties in bringing their financial accounts current for the fall semester.

Many alumni returned for Jubilee Day on October 6. Alumni were inspired by State Representative and Fisk alumnus Justin Jones ’17, who delivered a powerful convocation address followed by the pilgrimage to four of the original Jubilee Singers’ gravesites. And continuing the Jubilee Day celebration, Fisk Jubilee Singers Alumni delivered an awesome musical event, sending us on a trip down memory lane.

GAAFU held its 2023 Biennial Convention on October 7 to share updates from the regional constituent associations and committees, vote on changes to the bylaws, and elect new board members. I want to extend thanks to the outgoing elected Fisk Alumni Association officers Beverly Hill Dixon (Vice Chair), Anthony Murphy (Parliamentarian), Rob Wiley (Treasurer), and Jae West (Secretary).  Additionally, Deborah Mitchell Curry and Milton Sloan conclude their terms as Eastern Region Chair and Vice Chairs, respectively. These officers shepherded us through some difficult times, which required some innovative solutions. Congratulations to the new Fisk Alumni Association officers Sam Williams (Chair), Greg Johnson (Vice Chair), Carita Harrison Reaves (Treasurer), and Jae West (Secretary) who I stand ready to support. 

The attendees at the biennial were also treated to remarks by Trustee Roland Parrish, benefactor of the university’s new Parrish Center for Career Planning and Development; Dr. Robert Carr, University Provost; and our new President, Dr. Clark. 

An election for a new alumni trustee will be held near the end of the year to replace Trustee Lela Wingard Hughes, who has represented alumni well for two terms. All GAAFU-paid members will be allowed to vote via a ballot.

The gold and blue athletes have proven to be strong contenders in volleyball, women's and men’s basketball, gymnastics, and more. I hope you check out the athletics schedules on the university website and support our teams if they compete in your local area.

And finally, anticipation is also building for the 2023 homecoming activities. Please review the Fisk Homecoming Schedule  that includes the Alumni Events with active purchase/registration links.

Truly, it is an exciting time at Fisk. I look forward to seeing you on campus.


Fisk Forever!

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