Exercises Scheduled for Sunday, May 11, at 1:30 p.m.

WILSON, N.C. — Anita Brown-Graham, Director of the Institute for Emerging Issues, will be the featured speaker at the 112th annual commencement exercises of Barton College scheduled for Sunday, May 11, on center campus at 1:30 p.m. Wilson Gymnasium is the rain site. Dr. Norval C. Kneten will preside over his eleventh commencement program as president of Barton College. Dr. Gary Daynes, provost and vice president for academic affairs, will present the graduating class of 258 seniors.

Participating in this year’s commencement ceremony will be students who completed their baccalaureate degree requirements in December 2013 and May 2014, as well as candidates who expect to fulfill requirements over the summer.

The three highest honors presented to Barton students: the Coggins Cup, the Hilley Cup, and the Hemby Leadership Cup, will be awarded. The Coggins Cup is presented annually to the student voted best all-around by the Barton faculty and staff. The Hilley Cup is presented annually to the graduating senior with the highest cumulative grade point average. The Hemby Leadership Cup is presented to the graduating senior, who in the estimation of the college community (including students, faculty and staff) has demonstrated outstanding leadership throughout a career at Barton College.

The Lincoln Financial Faculty Member of the Year awards will also be presented. The awards, given annually to two faculty members, include a cash stipend for international study.

Brenda Hobbs Whaley, class of 1998, president of the Barton College Alumni Association and its Alumni Board, will bring greetings to graduating seniors on behalf of the Alumni Association.

Barton’s Commencement Day program will begin with the baccalaureate service Sunday morning at 11 a.m. in Howard Chapel. The Reverend Jamie C. Eubanks, chaplain of the college, will officiate at the service, and the Reverend Bill Moore, minister of Bedford Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) in Bedford, Va., and father of graduating senior Rachel Moore, will deliver the baccalaureate sermon.

Lunch will be served in the Hamlin Student Center Dining Hall from 11:30 a.m. – 1 p.m. at no charge for seniors and $5.00 each for family members and guests.

The Commencement festivities will include a picnic for graduating seniors and their families on Saturday morning, May 10, at 11:30 a.m., hosted by Dr. and Mrs. Norval C. Kneten at the Barton-Graves House.

The pinning ceremony for the graduates of the School of Nursing will be held in Howard Chapel on the Barton College campus earlier on Saturday morning, May 10, at 10 a.m.

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About the speaker —

Anita Brown-Graham joined the Institute for Emerging Issues (IEI) as director in January 2007. The Institute for Emerging Issues, which is part of North Carolina State University, brings people together around complex issues in pursuit of a single goal: to ensure North Carolina’s future competitiveness. IEI engages people from all regions, all sectors, and all points of view to facilitate consensus and encourage action.

Under Brown-Graham’s leadership, IEI has worked to bring diverse groups together around emerging issues in the fields of health, education, environments and the economy. During her tenure as Director, IEI’s annual Emerging Issues Forum has brought experts to NC to discuss complex topics such as Teachers and the Great Economic Debate, Changing Landscapes: Building the Good Growth State, and Heathcare Innovations.  In addition to the Forum, IEI works across the state to convene thousands each year in meaningful conversations that facilitate action at the community level.

Before joining IEI, Brown-Graham served as a Professor of Law and Government at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill School of Government, where for 12 years she provided significant training for state and local officials and wrote books and articles focused on developing the economic base of distressed communities. Prior to that, she served as a law clerk in the eastern district of California and as business litigation counsel in a law firm in Sacramento, Calif.

She earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in Criminal Justice and completed additional graduate studies in criminal justice at Louisiana State University. Her Juris Doctor degree was completed at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

The Triangle Business Journal recently named her to the list of Women in Business for 2014. In 2013, Brown-Graham was honored as a White House Champion of Change.

Brown-Graham is active on various national and state boards and committees. In 2010, the Kenan Institute for Engineering, Technology and Science awarded her a three year fellowship for a global comparative study on the role of higher education in driving innovation-based economies. In 2005, Brown-Graham earned an Eisenhower Fellowship, awarded by the Eisenhower Foundation in recognition of leadership impacts, to travel to South Africa for a comparative examination of issues of race and class. In 2004, she served as an American Marshall Fellow in Europe. Among a variety of additional honors and recognitions, Brown-Graham was awarded The Order of the Long Leaf Pine in 2001.

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