For Immediate Release
March 08, 2011
Contact Information

Joyce R. Forchion
(305) 626-3624


(BLACK PR WIRE) – MIAMI GARDENS, FL [MARCH 4, 2011] – A new era of leadership has emerged at Florida Memorial University as the campus family prepares to celebrate this year’s annual Founders’ Day Convocation with the theme “Building Upon A Legacy: From Good to Great.” The occasion takes place on Thursday, March 17, 2011 at 10:30 a.m. in the A. Chester Robinson Athletic Center on campus (15800 NW 42nd Avenue, Miami Gardens, FL 33054). Dr. Henry Lewis III, the University’s new president, will deliver the keynote address and share the goals and objectives outlined in “Vision 2020,” a comprehensive ten-year plan he proposed to make the institution a “World Class University.” Dr. Makola M. Abdullah, Florida Memorial University’s new provost and vice president for academic affairs, will preside.

“We are expecting all Miami Gardens residents and supporters of Florida Memorial to attend this year’s Convocation in support of Dr. Lewis’ message of inclusion and teamwork,” stated Dr. Barbara J. Edwards, chair of the Founders’ Day Convocation Committee. “Dr. Lewis realizes that in order for the University to move to the next level, we need participation and investment from the community to achieve many of our goals. We will sustain our commitment to educate students while strengthening our role as a community resource and partner,” she continued.

The Founders’ Day Convocation has celebrated the University’s pioneers and their achievements dating back to the institution’s origins in Live Oak, Florida in 1879. Convocation also serves as an opportunity for the University’s administrators to acknowledge notable volunteers who have upheld the motto of service and exemplified the qualities of the school’s founders. Slated to receive awards are alumnus and philanthropist Daniel McNeill, Baptist Convention representative Dora McGregor, and former Miami-Dade County Commissioner Betty T. Ferguson. 

The Founders’ Day Convocation ceremony is a free event that commemorates the University’s heritage and pays homage to the school’s history-making accomplishments. For more information about Dr. Henry Lewis III, this year’s keynote speaker, or the Convocation program, please contact the Office of Public Affairs at (305) 626-3624.

About Florida Memorial University:

Located in the City of Miami Gardens, Florida Memorial University is a private, historically Black institution offering 42 undergraduate degree programs and 4 graduate degree programs to a culturally diverse student body. Since its inception in 1879, the University has upheld a commitment to providing a solid foundation for thousands of young people and opening doors to educational opportunities that may have otherwise been closed to them. As South Florida’s only historically Black University, it is widely recognized for being the birthplace of the Negro National Anthem, “Lift Ev’ry Voice and Sing” and the home of Barrington Irving, Jr., the first and youngest pilot of African descent to fly solo around the world. For more information, please contact the Office of Public Affairs at (305) 626-3624 or visit