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Thank you Alcorn family, friends

My husband’s tenure as Alcorn State University’s interim president came to an end on Jan. 10, and I would like to thank The Natchez Democrat for the coverage, the Alcorn State University family and the Natchez community for the support and encouragement that was given us from February 2010 until then.

There have been too many people to try to thank individually, but collectively, I would like to thank Dr. Hank Bounds and his staff at the Institutions of Higher Learning for having the confidence and insight in choosing us to lead the university during those difficult financial times. I would also like to thank the ASU faculty and staff, student body, alumni across this vast country and around the world for their calls, texts, letters, cards, verbal words, e-mails, Facebook messages and all forms of encouraging and congratulatory support, and friends of ASU who have no direct or definite connection, except their love, spiritual and financial support for the university, members of my sorority, Alpha Kappa Alpha and my husband’s fraternity, Alpha Phi Alpha who encouraged and supported us from day one.

We will always be grateful to all of you for whatever the part you played. You have no idea how much it is appreciated.

There is a very special person, Mrs. Karen Shedrick, who plans her work and works her plan. I know I would never have been successful or never would have participated in many of the activities in which I involved myself had it not been for her. The adjectives have not been formed that best describe her.

Karen, thank you is just not enough for your commitment and knowledge of your position. You are the best. I wish all the eight state universities had a Karen.

Thanks are in order to the Natchez community for attending and supporting the first “Natchez Day” that we hosted on the main campus. Hopefully that will not be your one and only visit. After all, we are the university for Southwest Mississippi (your university). If you need assistance in being informed of campus activities, I can do that.

The Edneys have left the positions that we had as interim president and first lady, but we have not left the heart and soul of the university, it’s students. We did not get the state bragging rights at the Capital City Classic, but we do have the bragging rights for a 10.4 percent increase in student enrollment for the fall of 2010 (that was during our tenure.) It was also the highest increase among the eight state-funded universities.

Natchez, remember your Southwest Mississippi university; support it.

I am in awe for words to the local media for the coverage you gave us from day one of the appointment by the IHL, and we wish for your continued support and coverage. Don’t let Southwest Mississippi forget that we are the jewel that can only be an asset to the area. Many ASU alumni, friends and families are subscribers to your newspaper.

Hopefully you will not forget that jewel that is in the southwest corner of the state — Alcorn State, a land grant university with much history and beauty. We need your continued coverage and support.

As stated earlier, we have left those positions at the university, but the desire and determination to keep the university a place where young minds can come to develop into productive citizens will always be our mission.

The continuation to foster activities that will be rewarding to those who attend is a must. During my stay at the university I saw faces that I met with a smile of confidence indicating that they must have come to the right place where there is consideration of the whole student.

I saw so much change in so many things during my short tenure, but the thing that impressed me the most was the fact that people were smiling and happy most of the time. I just wish a very big thanks to everyone.

Lillian Clark Edney is the former first lady of Alcorn.

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