2010 Archives

SMU Plans Centennial Celebration and Establishes Founders’ Day

Dallas Hall Came First

Dallas Hall at SMU under construction
Construction of Dallas Hall began in 1912. The first building on the SMU campus, it was designed by the architectural firm Shepley,  Rutan & Coolidge. The building's architectural style was particularly influenced by Thomas Jefferson’s interpretation of the Roman Pantheon.
Dallas Hall at Southern Methodist University

December 27, 2010

DALLAS (SMU) — SMU’s Board of Trustees has passed a resolution establishing the Second Century Celebration to commemorate the 100th anniversary of the University’s founding and opening. January 1, 2011 was designated as the start of the celebration period, running through 2015. SMU was founded in 1911 and opened in 1915.

At its Dec. 3 meeting, the Board of Trustees also established SMU Founders’ Day, designated as the third Friday in April each year in recognition of the visionary institutions, organizations and individuals that founded the University on April 17, 1911. Founders’ Day in 2011 will be celebrated on April 15.

Founders’ Day each spring will include Inside SMU, featuring a day of classes by SMU faculty for alumni, parents and friends Historical exhibits that chronicle the century of SMU’s development and contributions to Dallas and society will be displayed on campus throughout the celebration years. Reunion classes will celebrate the centennial decades during Homecoming weekends. Other plans call for a commemorative picture book. Other activities, such as academic symposia, will be planned by committees involving SMU trustees and members of the campus community. The Second Century University Committee is being chaired by Paul Ludden, provost, and Brad Cheves, vice president for development and external affairs. Its members are:

School and Academic Representatives

  • Roger Kerin, Cox School of Business
  • Jim Hopkins, Dedman College
  • Lackland Bloom, Dedman School of Law
  • David Matula, Lyle School of Engineering
  • Carolyn Barta, Meadows School of the Arts
  • William Jennings Bryan III, Perkins School of Theology
  • Lynn Jacobs, Annette Caldwell Simmons School of Education and Human Development
  • Amy Carver, Central University Libraries
  • John Hall, Registrar

Library/Archives Representatives

  • Russell Martin, Central University Libraries
  • Joan Gosnell, Central University Libraries

Faculty Senate Representative

  • Linda Eads

Staff Association Representative

  • Gretchen Voight 

Student Representatives

  • Derek Hubbard, Student Union
  • Elise McDonald, Program Council
  • Jake Torres, Student Senate
  • Andrew Conwell, Student Foundation 

Athletics Representatives

  • Brad Sutton

Business and Finance Representatives

  • Julie Wiksten
  • Philip Jabour

Development and External Affairs Representatives

  • Dana Wilcox Ayres
  • Robert Bucker
  • Martha Coniglio
  • Pam Conlin
  • Patti LaSalle
  • Stacey Paddock
  • Andrew Snow
  • Mitch Whitten

Student Affairs Representatives

  • Judith Banes
  • Dawn Norris
  • Richard Owens

Trustees Carl Sewell and Ruth Altshuler are co-chairing the volunteer planning committee.

“SMU’s founding arose from a vision of excellence in education shared by leaders of Dallas and what is now The United Methodist Church,” said SMU President R. Gerald Turner. “A century of distinguished academic programs has contributed far beyond this community and region. Celebrating this milestone honors the scholars, leaders and others who have shaped SMU. It also enables us to focus on current achievements and the potential for even greater impact in SMU’s Second Century.”

More information about the Second Century Celebration is available online.



A nationally ranked private university located in the heart of Dallas, SMU is building on the vision of its founders, who imagined a distinguished center of learning emerging from the spirit of the city. Today, nearly 11,000 students benefit from the national opportunities and international reach provided by the quality of SMU’s


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