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Winter, 1991 Volume 36 Number
. Newsmagazine for Alumni, Parents and Friends
Distinguished alumni awards go to 'treasured'
music teacher and a Fortune 500 businesswoman
Two outstanding Chowan College
alumnae were honored with the college's
highest awards October 5 during the
annual Chowan homecoming alumni
meeting. Before a standing room only
crowd, the 1991 Distinguished Alumni
Awards were presented to Suzanne S.
Clifton, of Cary, N.C. and Louise
Lassiter of Strickland, of Woodland,
In making the presentations. President
Jerry F. Jackson stated "These two
alumnae have reached the height of
success in life by distinguishing them
selves as leaders of their communities,
by achieving excellence and making
lasting contributions through their lives
Suzanne S. Clifton, class of 1964, is
the president of Executive Temporaries,
Inc. in Cary, one of the 500 fastest
growing privately owned businesses in
the United States, according to Inc. 500
Magazine. From Roanoke Rapids,
N.C., she attended Chowan during the
1960's because of an exchange program
available in her hometown. She
graduated with the associate of arts in
elementary education and remembers her
days at Chowan as "very influential" in
her later success as a business executive
in the Research Triangle area of North
As a supporter of Chowan College,
Suzanne currently serves as chairperson
of the board of visitors. She is a leading
contributor each year to the college's
annual fund. A member of the alumni
association, she visits the college often.
She states she "is highly in favor of the
four-year transition." ’The Suzanne S.
Clifton Endowed Scholarship in
business has also been initiated at the
Literally a self-made executive,
Clifton got into her own private
business at the urging of her husband in
1984. Since that time, she has
developed a small office providing
personnel for business and industry into
a thriving human resource business
placing over 285 temporaries in
positions throughout North Carolina.
She staffs two growing office locations
with fourteen permanent employees and
runs a "tight ship," training most of her
Dr. Jackson stated that Clifton is an
inspiration to others in that she
overcame breast cancer because of early
detection. She emphasizes excellent
training as a reason for the success of
her company, which has a training
center to give one-on-one tutorials on
different computer programs and
systems to the temporaries.
"I never stop with just enough. I
always want to do more," says this
highly motivated woman who has
launched many careers and influenced
many young women as they prepare to
enter the workforce. A perfectionist, she
encourages young people to try hard for
what they want
She is also the recipient of an award
for outstanding contribution to the
economy of North Carolina by the
North Carolina Chapter of National
Association of Women Business
Owners; is listed in Who's Who in
American Executives, Who's Who in
the South; and Outstanding Young
Women in America.
She is married to Larry Clifton and
has two sons. Brooks and Matt Savage.
Louise Lassiter Strickland, class of
1936, was presented the Distinguished
Alumni Award for her years of service
and contributions through music. She
has used her twin talents of music and
teaching to bring happiness to people of
all ages in the Roanoke-Chowan area of
Strickland recalls that through the
sacrifice of her parents, Joe E. and Birdie
Futfell Lassiter, she was able to attend
Chowan in 1932. Her Chowan roots go
way back because her mother. Birdie,
attended Chowan and her aunt Vergie
Mae Futrell graduated from Chowan in
1909. At Chowan, Strickland studied
piano for four years and graduated in
1936 with a well-rounded education that
included a piano diploma, public school
music diploma and a bachelor of arts
degree in history and English. She
returned to Chowan to study piano with
Carole Nicholson, professor of music.
Louise Lassiter Strickland
When she retired in 1983, she had
completed twenty years as music teacher
and choir director at Murfreesboro High
School. But, she wasn't ready for the
rocking chair because even today she is
still the organist at the Methodist
Church in her hometown of Woodland.
She also goes to a nearby nursing home
weekly to conduct Sunday School
lessons for residents there and assists in
playing music at the funeral home in
Stricldand has been heard to say many
times that she receives a lot more than
Suzanne S. Clifton
she gives when she sees the men and
women tapping their feet as she plays.
According to her, it gives her a good
feeling to know that she has made
someone's life a little bit brighter.
She always enjoys seeing former
students and on any trip downtown can
usually greet several of them within a
few moments time. Her service to
others is recognized by the plaques
which hang on the walls in her home.
It has been said of Louise Sffickland
that "she loves everyone - that's why so
many people love her."
Harden Chapel will be 'quiet place for meditation'
Students, faculty and staff members
will soon have a quiet place to go for
comfort and reassurance when the con
struction of Harden Chapel is completed
early next year.
A chapel on the campus of Chowan
has long been a dream at the College,
and it is now a dream made reality by
Ach Harden, professor of math in the
department of math and science.
"1 conceived of the chapel as re
maining an informal area that is warm,
peaceful, friendly, comforting and
reassuring," states ftofessor Harden who
asked that it be dedicated Harden Chapel
in memory of his wife Mary Carus
Harden, who died in 1985.
"One of my reasons for presenting a
gift to the college for a chapel is that I
thought a church-supported school
should have a cfiapel as a place for any
of the college family to use for private
meditation and prayer."
Harden Chapel will be located
downstairs below Thomas Cafeteria.
The design for the chapel was recently
completed by David Parker, chairman of
the division of art. Plans are for Doug
Eubank, professor of art, to make the
stained glass across the back of the
"Every church-related institution needs
a chapel," said FYesident Jerry Jackson.
"I am pleased that Professor Harden has
seen the need at Chowan to provide a
quiet place where students, faculty and
staff can meet, pray or just meditate.
This facility will add a spiritual
dimension to the campus."
The chapel, which will be open 24
hours a day, will be ecumenical in
nature. The campus minister will be
responsible for programs held there.
Inspirational quotations will hang inside
the chapel, which is modem in design
combining functional and traditional
A dedication for the chapel is planned
for February, 1992 when consuiiction is
Professor Harden returned this
semester on a part-time basis following
his official retirement at the end of last
year. He completed undergraduate studies
at Williams College, received the
T.M.A. from N.C. State University
after he retired from the Army, and
began his second career teaching at
Chowan almost 22 years ago. The
professor is a sportsman who enjoys
hunting and fishing and likes to spend
summers "up north" in New Hampshire
at his home there. He has two daughters
who live in Vermont and one son who
resides in Montana.