Ouachita Baptist University bade farewell to 13 retiring faculty members during spring commencement services May 12, the final campus-wide event of the academic year.
The 13 faculty members served at Ouachita for a combined total of 339 years. Along with four staff members who also are retiring, the group served at the university a total of 410 years, averaging more than 24 years each.
“Friends, thank you for your service. You have made us a better university,” said Ouachita President Rex M. Horne, Jr. “We will not forget your sacrifice and toil at Ouachita across the years. You have done well.”
Two faculty members completed more than 40 years of service each: Glenn Good with 43 years of service and Tona Wright with 41 years of service. Three others served more than 30 years each: Dr. Richard Mills, 39 years; Russell Hodges, 34 years; and Eddie Ary, 32 years.
Several of the retiring faculty members served as honorary marshals during the commencement ceremony. All of the retirees previously were honored with a retirement reception.
Ten full-time faculty members retiring with more than 15 years of service each were honored by the Ouachita Board of Trustees as emeriti faculty. They include:
Glenn Good, professor emeritus of physics, 43 years of service. Good, who holds degrees from Louisiana Polytechnic Institute, served as the Charles S. and Elma Grey Goodwin Holt Professor of Physics.
Tona Wright, professor emerita of kinesiology and leisure studies, 41 years of service. A graduate of Henderson State University and Oklahoma State University, she also coached women’s volleyball at Ouachita for 24 years and women’s tennis for 21 years.
Dr. Richard Mills, professor emeritus of sociology, 39 years of service. Mills holds both bachelor’s and master’s degrees from Ouachita as well as a doctorate in education from East Texas State University.
Russell Hodges, associate professor emeritus of music and music librarian, 34 years of service. Hodges holds degrees from Oklahoma Baptist University, the University of Oklahoma and the University of North Texas.
Eddie Ary, associate professor emeritus of finance, 32 years of service. Ary is a graduate of Southeastern Oklahoma State University and Oklahoma State University.
Nona Anderson, professor emerita of modern languages. 24 years of service. Anderson is a graduate of the University of Central Arkansas and Henderson State University.
Dr. Sim Flora, professor emeritus of music, 22 years of service. Flora, who holds a master’s degree from Ouachita, also is a graduate of Southern Illinois University and the University of Oklahoma.
Dr. Stephen Garner, assistant professor emeritus of music, 22 years of service. Garner holds degrees from William Carey College and Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary.
Dr. Irene Trofimova, professor emerita of modern languages, 21 years of service. She is a graduate of Leningrad State Teachers’ Training University, Alma Ata Teachers’ Training University and University of Philosophy, Alma Ata.
Shirley Dumais, assistant professor emerita and circulation/reference librarian, 17 years of service. She holds degrees from Baylor University, West Texas A&M and Texas Woman’s University.
In addition to the emeriti faculty, other retiring faculty members are: Rosemary Flora, lecturer in English, 19 years of service; Lindsay Van Sicklen, assistant professor and periodicals librarian, 13 years of service; and Dr. Jan Duncan, professor of modern languages, 12 years of service.
Retiring staff members include: Cindy Goodman, administrative assistant for special programs, 22 years of service; Jan Bass, public schools coordinator for the Ben M. Elrod Center for Family and Community, 17 years of service; Claire Gibson, assistant registrar, 17 years of service; and Eugene Pate, facilities services grounds crew, 15 years of service.
By Trennis Henderson, OBU Vice President for Communications