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September 16, 2002

Homecoming 2002 comes to Emory

By Michael Terrazas

Emory’s 2002 Alumni Weekend kicks off this week, with a full slate of activities from all across campus to welcome back former University students to their old haunts.

“Welcome Back” is the simple yet appropriate theme of this year’s event, which begins Thursday, Sept. 19, with Emory’s Sports Hall of Fame banquet and ends Sunday with faith-related brunches and an afternoon piano concert by Will Ransom.

As always, the weekend will center around Saturday (Sept. 21) when the Association of Emory Alumni (AEA) bestows upon three graduates the Emory Medal, the highest honor awarded to alumni by the University.

This year’s ceremony will be held Saturday at 11:30 a.m. in Miller-Ward Alumni House and will be followed by a picnic luncheon on the Miller-Ward grounds. Being honored with 2002 Emory Medals are:

Ralph Holland ‘47BBA. Holland, retired as major general from the Air Force since 1975, was first nominated by President Lyndon Johnson to serve as brigadier general in 1968. While serving as commander at Warner Robins Air Force Base, Holland helped resolve a hostage crisis at the base. He now lives in San Antonio.

William Kelso ‘71PhD. In 1996 Kelso, an archaelogist, discovered Virginia’s James Fort, the first permanent English settlement in North America. The discovery culminated a 30-year career for Kelso, who served as director of archaelogy for the Association for the Preservation of Virginia Antiquities and lives in Jamestown, Va.

Venable Lawson ‘50G. Former professor and director of Emory’s Library School, Lawson was named to Who’s Who in America in 1989, and he is an honorary member of the Southeastern Library Association. Lawson, who lives in Atlanta, spent 23 years at Emory, beginning in 1965 and retiring in 1988.

“In addition to the Emory Medal ceremony, this year’s Alumni Homecoming Weekend will begin on Thursday with Bacchanal, an extraordinary event benefitting the Carlos Museum,” said Bob Pennington, vice president for alumni affairs and special development programs—and a four-time Emory alumnus ('74Ox, '76C, '81MBA, '81L) himself.

“[Bacchanal] will be held in the museum and will feature wonderful food, cocktails, music and an opportunity to become familiar with the museum and its new Ancient American galleries,” Pennington continued. “The event will be open to all alumni—especially our young alumni.”

Allison Dykes, executive director for program and budget, said AEA is working more with affinity-type organizations on campus to provide returning alumni with a feel for the current state of activities with which they might have been involved in their student days. Theater Emory, for example, is hoping alumni attend its Brave New Works events over the weekend, as well as a panel discussion with theater alumni on how their lives and careers progressed after graduation.

Also standing out on this year’s schedule are guided tours of Emory’s impressive new facilities, including the Math & Science Building, the Schwartz Center for Performing Arts, the renovated Kappa Alpha House and others. And, of course, each of Emory’s schools has planned events catering specifically to its own alumni.

For a complete, downloadable schedule of Alumni Weekend activities, as well as reunion activities (classes of 1952, '77, '92, '97 and 2001 will hold reunions), visit the AEA website at