Board of Trustees member passes away

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R. Douglas Hawkins, member of the Troy University Board of Trustees, passed away Saturday, Sept. 5, in Montgomery, due to complications following open-heart surgery.

According to a press release from university relations, Hawkins was appointed to the Board of Trustees in 1980, serving as president pro tempore from 1995 until 2011. He was a charter member of the Troy Jaycees and a Rotarian for almost 55 years.

Doug Hawkins, as he was known, was a member of First Baptist Church, where he served as a deacon. Hawkins was founder of the Pi Kappa Phi Chapter at Troy University and was named Greek Man of the Year in 1969 and Honorary Alumnus of the Year in 1996.

In 2013, he wrote “Turning Points,” a history of Troy University. The tower at Veterans Memorial Stadium that houses the press box, the suites and the athletic training facilities bears his name. Hawkins also practiced veterinary medicine in Troy for 55 years.

Jack Hawkins, Jr., Chancellor of Troy University, praised Doug Hawkins for his Trojan pride and support.

“We stand on the shoulders of giants at Troy and foremost among these giants was Dr. Doug Hawkins,” Chancellor Hawkins said. “With his passing we have lost one of the best friends and most loyal supporters a University could have.

“Many of the major initiatives of the university over the last 35 years, from our first doctoral programs, to Division I athletics, to the internationalization of the University benefited from his vision and whole-hearted support. Most significantly, Dr. Doug was the driving force behind the creation of Greek system at Troy.”

“On a personal level, I have lost a valued colleague and friend,” Chancellor Hawkins said. “His support on the Board of Trustees was invaluable, and I always knew where I stood with Dr. Doug. He was a true Trojan.”

State Sen. Gerald Dial, who succeeded Doug Hawkins as President Pro Tempore on the Board of Trustees, praised Hawkins as a valuable colleague.

“Dr. Doug was the longest-serving Trustee in the history of our board and his influence was felt in all areas of the University,” Dial said. “No one loved Troy University more than Dr. Doug Hawkins. His passing leaves a huge leadership void on our board.”

Troy Mayor Jason Reeves also cited Doug Hawkins for his contributions to the city as well as the university.

“The Troy community has lost a dear friend and man who made immeasurable contributions to the betterment of the city he was proud to call home,” Reeves said.

“Through his devoted service to Troy University, in his 35 years as a trustee, he helped transform the University and the community into what we have become, impacting thousands of lives for the better. His legacy will be felt as long as Troy remains. Our thoughts and prayers go out to his devoted family along with gratitude for sharing him with all of us. He is simply irreplaceable.”

Flags will fly at half staff across Troy University and the city of Troy beginning Saturday, and the Trojans’ football team will wear special “Dr. Doug” helmet stickers for this evening’s game against N.C. State in Raleigh, North Carolina.

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