Campus: CSU Stanislaus -- November 12, 2001

Florida State University Names CSU Stanislaus President, Dr. Marvalene Hughes, Its "Distinguished Educator" For 2001

Dr. Marvalene Hughes, now serving in her eighth year as President of California State University, Stanislaus, will be honored as the Distinguished Educator for 2001 by her alma mater, Florida State University.

The award will be bestowed at Florida State's Annual Homecoming on Saturday, November 10. The distinction is particularly poignant for Hughes, who was the first African-American to earn a Ph.D. from Florida State.

"This award is weighted with tremendous meaning for me, far beyond any personal validation," Hughes said. "I hope this is indicative to people who aspire for excellence and value public service that their efforts can make a difference."

This is the second alumna award for President Hughes. In 1996, she was named Alumna of the Year by the National Alumni Association of Tuskegee University, where she earned a bachelor's degree in English and history and a master's degree in counseling psychology and administration.Senator Dick Monteith awarded her the honor of "Woman of the Year" in the California State Senate for the year 2001.

Although she has been the recipient of many professional and community service awards at the state, national, and international levels, she remains very humble, citing her public service mission as a driving force. When asked to what she attributes the awards, she responded, "One of my greatest gifts as a professional has been in knowing how to carefully choose winners to be on my team and who have a shared vision for an important public mission. Together, when we are able to make our collective dreams a reality, it is rewarding for all of us."

While a graduate student at Columbia University in New York, where she received a full scholarship, Dr. Hughes showed a penchant for achieving "firsts" in her field. She conducted research that led to the first Head Start program in the nation. The following year, she was appointed as Director of Education for the first Job Corps center for women.

She later served as the first African-American national president of the Association of University and College Counseling Centers, and in 1986 she was elected as President of the American College Personnel Association, an organization of more than 9,000 members. In 1994, she became the first female and African-American president of CSU Stanislaus.

Since coming to CSU Stanislaus, President Hughes and her team have introduced and implemented key initiatives that have advanced the University's reputation as one of the finest universities in the country. CSU Stanislaus received its first national ranking under her leadership in 1995 and has enjoyed six consecutive rankings. This year U.S. News & World Report magazine ranked the University in the Top 10 in the West for schools offering bachelor's and master's degrees.

Her reputation as a higher education expert and visionary has led to involvement and leadership roles in a number of important programs at the international, national, and state levels. Her career reveals a deep commitment to academic excellence, community service, and partnerships with the public and private sectors.

Always on the side of expanding public educational opportunities, she worked with the Clinton administration to inaugurate the federal initiative, "High Hopes for College American Youths."

As national president of women presidents, she recently led a delegation of 24 women presidents and chancellors to spend a day with the New York Times to discuss with the senior managers and senior editor the unique contributions of women as leaders in higher education, with specific emphasis on public higher education institutions. Presently, she is writing a book about women presidents as leaders of public higher education institutions.

President Hughes has conducted research and authored or co-authored numerous chapters and refereed articles related to education, managing organizations, human behavior, and diversity. She was the keynote presenter at the International Women's Conference held at the Great Hall of the People of the Republic of China on Tianenmen Square. Dr. Hughes has also given keynote addresses throughout the United States as well as in Austria, Portugal, South Africa, Costa Rica, Russia, Lithuania, China, Bermuda, Jordan, the Emirates, and Ethiopia.

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