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The title (rf president rests comfortably oa the dioulders
of Bruce Ezell Whitaker, Chowan’s chief administrator
since May, 1957.
Beginning in high school. Dr. Whitaker has responded
on many occasions to the call from his peers to lend his
leadership skills as president.
On Oct. 25, he blended two of his titles of president, one
from the past and his present position at Chowan, when he
returned “home” to preside at a reunion of the 1940
Mooresboro High School graduating class, of which he
was president and valedictorian.
Approximately 30 members of the 44-member 1940
Mooresboro High School graduating class were present
for the meeting at Hanna’s Cafeteria in Shelby.
Class Photographs Distributed
Each returning alumnus was asked to share items that
related either to the school or his activities since gradua
tion. Dr. Whitaker brought a copy of the senior class
photograph among other personal materials for each
He said he enjoyed “reminiscing about my high school
days at Mooresboro and renewing friendships and learn
ing what my former classmates have been doing.” The
last reunion he attended was 21 years ago.
Mooresboro High School no longer exists, as it was con
solidated into Crest High School more than 20 years ago.
After leaving Mooresboro High, Dr. Whitaker gained
the bachelor of arts degree from Wake Forest College
where he served as president of the Euzelia Literary
Society; and master erf theology and doctor of philosophy
degrees from Southern Baptist Theological Seminary in
Louisville, Ky. He did additional graduate studies at
George Peabody School of Teachers.
A Cleveland County native, Whitaker came to Chowan
in 1957 from the position of executive secretary of the Stu
dent Department of the North Carolina Baptist State Con
vention. He had previously taught in three colleges and
served as a Baptist minister.
Dr. Whitaker has applied his leadership to guide
Chowan’s growth in all areas and to serve many com
munity, church and educational groups.
Chowan’s enrollment has climbed frcMn under 300 to
more than 350. More than $20 million has been added to the
college’s assets. For the past 28 years, Chowan has
operated in the black. Thirteen major buildings have been
added, including the $2.75 million gymnasium and
physical education facility, Helms Center, and a new
graphic communications building, Homer Center. In
May, 1987, he will celebrate his 30th year as president.
Serves Other Organizations
Whitaker has also found time to serve as president of
five educational organizations, including the National
Council of Independent Junior Colleges, and Association
of Southern Baptist Colleges and Schools. From 1976-82, he
was a member of the Board of Directors of the American
Association of Community and Junior Colleges. He is a
member of the American Council on Education’s Board of
Directors, Class of 1988. He is one of 18 national institu
tional representatives and the only one from an indepen
dent two-year college on the Board of Directors.
His community service includes president of the Mur
freesboro Rotary Qub, director of the North Carolina
Family Life Council, president of the Chowanoke Area
Development Association, and president of the North
Carolina Literary and Historical Association. He has also
been active in the North Carolina Christmas Seal Cam
paign and is a member of Murfreesboro Baptist Church.
Interested in Mental Health
One of his most important contributions has been to
mental health efforts in North Carolina. He is a past chair
man and current member of the North Carolina Commis
sion for Mental Health, Mental Retardation, and
Substance Abuse Services. He is chairman of the Commis
sion’s Mental Health Committee.
The Whitaker School at Butner for emotionally disturb
ed youth was named in Dr. Whitaker’s honor on June 30,
1982. He was lauded by Gov. Jim Hunt for his dedication to
better the mental health, as well as total well-being, of
North Carolina young people.
Whitaker was also honored as “Boss of the Year” by the
Murfreesboro and North Carolina Jaycees, 1971-72. He is
listed in Who’s Who in America.”
He is married to the former Esther Adams of Conover,
who is a professor in the Department of Religion and
Philosophy. They have two sons.
Put The Future First.
You understand just how imjxjrtant education is to the economic vitality
and quality of life in North Carolina.
And you know the important role independent colleges and universities
play in our system of higher education.
On November 4, help Chowan
build a brighter future.
Vote FOR Constitutional Amendment ^1.
The amendment will allow North Carolina’s
nonprofit independent colleges and universities
to use tax-exempt fmancing to build and renovate
facilities - like libraries, research centers,
classrooms, health centers. This kind of financing
means lower interest rates, which will help these
colleges keep their costs lower and ensure they will
be here for future generations - for North Carolina.
All funds raised through tax-exempt financing
will be repaid by the colleges themselves. As a
safeguard, the State Treasurer will permit this
fmancing only for colleges that fully back it up.
The state - and North Carolina taxpayers - will
never pay a cent.
VOTE FOR AMENDMENT #1
For the Future - For North Carolina
Authorized by NC Friends of Higher Education.
Honorary Cluurpersons: Hon. HaiiMi Boyks, Sen. Jim BroyhUI,
Hen. Harvey Gantl« Mrs. Margaret Harper, Li. Gov. Bob Jordan,
Gov. Jim Martin* Hon. Liston Ramsey, Hon. Terr}' Sanford.
The Chowanian, October, 1986—PAGE 5