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Dillard's Athletic Director, Kiki Barnes, named GCAC AD of the Year PDF Print E-mail
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(New Orleans, La.)  The Gulf Coast Athletic Conference announced that Kiki Baker Barnes is the 2013-14 GCAC Athletics Director of the Year.  Barnes recently completed her eighth year in the position at Dillard University, and she also serves as GCAC President.  She first won the award back in 2010-11.

“I believe in not being afraid to fail, not worrying about what other people have to say, doing your best, working hard, having integrity,” said Barnes.

Her immediate boss seems to have noticed the hard work, long hours and tireless dedication Barnes has put forth, especially this year as it proved to be her first year as the full time athletic director.

“As President of the GCAC, she took the lead in the hiring of our new commissioner,” said Dillard University President Dr. Walter M. Kimbrough.  “They have formed a great team that helped produce a fantastic basketball tournament.  Her leadership has been also noted by the chair of the council of presidents.”

Some of her important achievements throughout the academic calendar year include:

-Wrote a grant to help fund the DUFIT Summer Fitness Camp

-Led and completed facility renovation of athletics weight room, which included installing a new floor and purchasing new weight and training equipment

-Had student-athletes create a Live 5 hand gesture that was featured at 2014 NAIA National Convention

-Dillard University athletics received Five Star Champions of Character Award for the 6th year in a row

-For the 2nd year in a row, Dillard University won conference student of character award (2013-Jonquil Griffin; 2014 Amber Tramel) as well as conference coach of character award (2014-Bobby Williams)

-Men’s 4x4 meter relay team finished 3rd in the nation at the NAIA National Outdoor Track & Field Meet

-2014 GCAC Men’s Track Champions

-2014 GCAC Women’s Track and Cross Country teams both 1st runner-up

-Named to Gambit’s Top 40 under 40 list of New Orleans young professionals who are making a difference in the community

“Mrs. Barnes has been a pioneer in athletics as a coach, athletic director and conference president,” said Steven Martin, GCAC Commissioner.  “Her vision and tireless work has been a catalyst in developing the strategic plan for the growth of athletics at Dillard University and the GCAC.”

Barnes is close to finishing her Ph.D. in Higher Education Administration from the University of New Orleans.  Her anticipated graduation date is December 2014.

When asked about how she was able to become so successful at such a young age, Barnes responded confidently.

“I try to use the talents that God has blessed me with and I try to be a visionary leader.  I am grateful for his blessings and will continue to try to affect positive change in my career and community.”

Physics Professor Abdalla Darwish Named Presidential Professor PDF Print E-mail
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Picture clipping 2Dr. Abdalla Darwish, a professor of physics, was recently named Dillard University’s first Presidential Professor.  The award is a non-renewable four-year appointment that recognizes and honors outstanding faculty scholars who have records of significant and sustained research, creative artistic work, or a history of securing grant/external funding, and who have achieved national or international reputation by virtue of accomplishments in their fields.

Darwish obtained his BS in Nuclear Engineering from University of Alexandria, MS in Solid State Physics and PhD in optics and laser physics from the University of Alabama in Tuscaloosa. He has been a Dillard University faculty member for sixteen years and has  served the university in numerous administrative roles, including chair of the physics department, chair of the School of STEM, interim dean of the College of Arts and Sciences, and Associate Vice President for Academic Affairs.  

Darwish is an expert in thin film fabrication using the Pulse Laser Deposition technique and ion implantation. He has authored over 80 publications in the areas of nonlinear optical materials, magnetic resonance, waveguides, thin film fabrication and optical sensors.  Over the course of his tenure at Dillard, Darwish has been able to secure over $13 million in grant funds as a PI or CoPI to establish many programs and research enterprises in physics and the School of STEM such as the summer bridge program, LA-LAMP, GAELA, TESSE, GAMP, AGAP, NASA- LA SPACE consortium, NASA-NORC for STEM retention, and PLD of materials. These projects were funded by research grants from the Air Force Office of Scientific research, Air Force, Navy, Army, NASA, NSF, NASA EPSCoR and most recently HBCUs as leaders and teachers in STEM from the University of Pennsylvania.  Darwish has also received multiple Louisiana Board of Regents grants.  

Darwish has established a multi-million dollar state-of-the-art laser ablation lab on the Dillard University campus. Earlier this year he filed for patent on his new invention of double laser ablation, and he is in the process of filing his second patent. According to the Composites B Engineering journal, his most recent publication about the invention of double laser ablation was downloaded over 296 times in just three months. This critical paper springs lots of scientific interactions and collaboration internationally through many countries: Japan, Malaysia, England, and China which changes the way the pulse laser deposition is done around the world.

Thank you Dillard University Alumni – YOU DID IT! PDF Print E-mail
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4th-of-july-thxThe faculty, staff and students of Dillard University would like to thank the greatest alumni family in the world for their support this past year!

Through your passion and dedication, our alumni participation rate was doubled from last year to this year! For the first time in nearly a decade, we can boast a 10% alumni participation rate (and rising.)

Our committed National Alumni Leadership, local chapter presidents and alumni from coast to coast and beyond, answered the call and made an amazing push in the final 48 hours to achieve this goal. Thank you #BleuPrideRising

Dillard Alum presents "The Love of a Family" stage play by Shar Sams during Essence Festival Weekend PDF Print E-mail
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unnamed-1NEW ORLEANS - Shar's Enterprise Corporation presents the stage play "The Love of a Family" during the Essence Music Festival at the Marriott Hotel at the Convention Center, 859 Convention Center Blvd. on 3:00 P.M. on July 4, 5, and 6, 2014.  Directed, written and produced by Dillard University Alum Shar Sams; a twenty-three year veteran educator who has worked in all areas of the educational arena.

"The Love of a Family" features guest speakers Mary-Pat Hector, National Youth Director for National Action Network Civil Rights Organization; Overseer Ray Neal, Faith Memorial Church of the United Churches of God & Christ in Morrow, Georgia; and Praises Dancers from Greater St. Stephen Full Gospel Baptist Church, New Orleans.

"The Love of a Family" talks about the importance of loving your children. Based on a family of four; a mother, father, and a set of twins; a daughter and a son; the play takes an in depth view concerning the tribulation of parents undergoing a divorce while trying to maintain a relationship with their children.

While the children think they have the perfect family and the "most terrific" parents in the world, they are totally naive of the turmoil taking place behind closed doors with mom and dad.  After 25 years of marriage, mom and dad have decided to divorce but are unsure of how to break the news to their children.  They don't want their pending separation and divorce to have an adverse effect on their honor roll children in a negative way.

The problem is that both parents love their children unconditionally and they both want custody and despise having to separate them because of the divorce.  Therefore, both parents mutually agreed to let the twin siblings live with their mother and have visitation rights with their father. The play dialogues about the different affects a divorce can have on each child and how family issues can extend into a child's classroom, personal friendships and relationships outside of the home. Even, if the children are raised in the same household and by the same parents.  The message to remember is never forget that your sons and daughters are the future doctors, lawyers, teachers and leaders of the world.

Will the parents reconcile for the sake of their children? How will the children handle the divorce? How will the children react to their parents after finding out their parents are divorcing? Will both children mutually agree to live with the mother? Will the divorce affect the children's daily, personal, school or religious life?

"If you are looking for great entertainment, inspiration, motivation, great gospel music and a strong message that pertains to issues families face, throughout America on a daily basis? If you're wondering what really goes on behind closed doors in a classroom setting! What goes on in the mind of the so-called "At-Risk Child?" If you're wondering how a divorce can affect the entire family?  Then it's a must that your entire family see "The Love of a Family!"

July 5, 2014 has been designated as Red & White Day for the Delta Sigma Theta Sorority Inc.  There will also be outstanding, Comedians, Poetess, Dancers, Speakers and more.  Tickets are available via the web at  

A portion of the proceeds will go to Dillard University New Orleans, and Delta Sigma Theta Sorority Incorporated Scholarship Fund.

Click here for Ticket Information

Dillard University Names Alumnus Michael Jones, Board Chair and Announces New Trustees PDF Print E-mail
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Untitled(New Orleans) – Longtime Board member and Dillard alumna Joyce Roché, ’71, turned over the reigns of the Dillard University Board of Trustees to fellow alumnus Michael Jones,’82, effective May 9, 2014.  Roché, who has served on the board for nearly 30 years and as chairperson since 2005, led the university through one of its most challenging decades in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina. Under her leadership, Dillard restored its campus facilities, including the construction of two new buildings - the Professional Schools and Sciences Building and a Student Union, Recreation, Health and Wellness Center.

“It has been an honor and a privilege to serve my alma mater and to lead its reconstruction efforts,” Roché said. “Even in the darkest hour, I never gave up hope that Dillard would be back stronger than ever, ”she added. “We are forging forward and I am confident that the newly appointed chair will continue moving the University to higher levels,” Roché said.

Joyce Roché has been a trailblazer in the corporate world for 25 years, as Avon's first African-American female vice president; Chief Operating Officer of Carson Products Company, now part of L'Oreal; the former Chief Executive Officer of the national nonprofit Girls Incorporated; and a board member of five Fortune 500 companies.

Roché is the author of The Empress Has No Clothes: Conquering Self-Doubt to Embrace Success (Berrett-Koehler Publishers, 2013). In it she shares her life-long struggle with the impostor syndrome which can stifle one’s achievements and continued success. Learn more at

Dillard alumnus Michael D. Jones,’82, is a partner in the law firm of Kirkland and Ellis, LLP, in Washington, D.C. and has been a member of Dillard’s Board of Trustees since 2006. He has a national trial practice that has ranged from New York to Hawaii.  Jones serves as co-chair of the Board of Directors for the Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights Under Law (LCCRUL) and is a fellow in the American College of Trial Lawyers.  He has been recognized by the Legal Times as a “Champion of Justice” and Georgetown University with the outstanding alumni award.

Dillard names new Board Chair and Trustees…add one

Jones graduated cum laude from Georgetown University Law Center in 1985 where he also received the Thurgood Marshall Award.  He received his B.A. from Dillard University, in New Orleans, LA, graduating summa cum laude.   He is an adjunct professor of Trial Advocacy at Georgetown University in Washington, D.C. 

In addition, the University has recently appointed five new members to its Board of Trustees:  Kim M. Boyle, partner with Phelps Dunbar, LLP; CNN Legal Analyst Sunny Hostin; Charles Rice, president and CEO - Entergy New Orleans, Inc.; Carol A. Solomon, CEO – Peoples Health; and Matthew M. Wisdom, director and CEO - Turbo Squid, Inc.

“I am very excited and humbled to be appointed as Chair of Dillard’s Board,” Jones said. “I welcome the opportunity to serve in this new capacity and I welcome these stellar individuals who are joining the board of trustees,” he added. “With their appointment and the new administration, it is a very exciting time at Dillard.”

Kim M. Boyle, partner with Phelps Dunbar, LLP; practice areas include labor and employment, civil rights, constitutional law, commercial, tort, and general litigation. Boyle earned a juris doctorate from the University of Virginia School of Law and a bachelor’s degree in teaching from Princeton University.

Sunny Hostin, CNN legal analyst, is an attorney and multi-platform journalist. As legal analyst for CNN’s “American Morning,” she is known for her detailed analysis of high-profile trials and legal issues. Hostin earned an undergraduate degree in Communications from Binghamton University and her juris doctorate from Notre Dame Law School.

Charles Rice is president and CEO - Entergy New Orleans, Inc., a $750 million a year electric and gas utility. Rice holds a bachelor’s degree in business administration from Howard University, a juris doctorate from Loyola University’s School of Law and a master’s degree in business administration from Tulane University.

Carol A. Solomon, CEO – Peoples Health Network, has held leadership positions at other Louisiana-based healthcare organizations, serving as CEO for MedFirst Health Plans, and directing the development of a pilot managed care project at LSU Medical Center.

Matthew M. Wisdom, CEO, Director, and Chief Technology Officer of Turbo Squid, Inc.. He is also a founding partner and senior producer of 3Dvisual effects for Chimera Digital Imaging. Wisdom is a graduate of Brown University.

Other members of the Dillard University Board of Trustees include: Frank Mason, owner of FranGlo, Linden, NJ, who serves as vice chair of the board; Ronnie V. Burns, Sr., president and CEO-BMG Enterprises, New Orleans, LA, secretary; M. Cleland Powell, III, executive vice president, Iberiabank, New Orleans, LA, treasurer; Dr. Victoria H. Barbosa, dermatologist, Chicago, IL; The Honorable Ruth Carter, Detroit, MI; Bishop Cynthia Fierro Harvey, United Methodist Church, Baton Rouge, LA; Pamela Francois, Dillard University National Alumni Association, Gonzales, LA; Dathel C. Georges, New Orleans, LA; Orim Graves, CFA, executive director, National Association of Securities Professionals, Philadelphia, PA; Pres Kabacoff, president, Historic Restoration, Inc., New Orleans, LA; Dr. James E. Lyons, (retired) interim president (Dillard), Conyers, GA; and Walter M. Kimbrough, president-Dillard University.

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