SU observes the passing of former administrator Dr. Elton C. Harrison
- Monday, September 22, 2014
Longtime Southern University administrator and ardent University
supporter Elton C. Harrison died September 20, 2014. He was 97 and a
resident of Baton Rouge.
Funeral arrangements are listed below.
Harrison served as vice president of Academic Affairs and was a former member of the Southern University Board of Supervisors.
Harrison, born in Tylertown, Mississippi, was a 1938 technology graduate of Southern. He earned a master's degree from Fisk University in Nashville, Tennessee, and a Ph.D. from Ohio State University.
He was a math teacher at Fort Valley State University before coming to Southern.
According to author Everett D. Gibson in his book A Portrait of Southern University, Harrison was "noted for building strong departments, especially in the College of Sciences, including the departments of mathematics, chemistry, physics, computer science and biology."
He also helped to develop Southern's College of Engineering.
After retiring from Southern in 1974, Harrison moved to Dillard University in New Orleans, where he served as vice president, dean of the university, and dean of the graduate school.
In his retirement years, Harrison was noted for his attendance at SU football games, campus events, and Board of Supervisors meetings.
Acting Southern University chancellor Flandus McClinton called Harrison "an extraordinary educator who was able to envision the larger role that education played in the development of the African-American community."
"Dr. Harrison was dedicated to Southern University and was always willing to make suggestions that would improve how educators communicated to students. That interchange was at the heart of what made Dr. Harrison so special," McClinton said. "He will be missed."
Harrison received numerous grants, awards and fellowships, including the Ford Foundation Fellowship to study at Harvard University. He was presented the Outstanding Education Award (Alpha Psi Award) from Southern, and was honored by Baton Rouge television station WAFB-TV Channel 9 with the Volunteer Baton Rouge award. The main street on the SU Baton Rouge campus is named in his honor.
SU System President Ronald Mason Jr., said, "The Southern University System mourns the loss of former Vice President and Board Member Dr. E. C. Harrison. He was a life-long educator and a strong and gracious supporter of the Jaguar Nation."
"His impact in the field of higher education was far reaching and transforming. Dr. Harrison was a visionary who recognized the importance of innovation and research as integral to academic excellence," he said. "His leadership marked years of growth and accomplishments for Southern University and other universities he served. He was a dedicated and loyal friend to SU and to his community. I am honored to have known this remarkable man. He will be sorely missed."
Harrison is the father of one son, Elton C. Harrison III.
Thursday, September 25
Viewing 1 p.m. - 5 p.m. Hall Davis and Son Funeral Service 9348 Scenic Highway Baton Rouge, LA 70807
Friday, September 26
Viewing 9 a.m. Camphor United Methodist Church 8742 Scenic Highway Baton Rouge, LA 70807
Community Tribute 11 a.m. Camphor United Methodist Church
Memorial Rituals 12:10 p.m Kappa Alpha Psi Fraternity, Incorporated 12:30 p.m. Alpha Xi Boule' Camphor United Methodist Church