Dr. Doug Hawkins Shares View
of University History in New Book
Dr. R. Douglas Hawkins’ name is known to just about anyone who’s walked inside Veterans Memorial Stadium. That’s
because his name is on the press box tower.
Now his name can be found on the cover of the newest history about the institution.
“Turning Points” highlights the life of the University since its inception in 1887 as State Normal School and charts its
progress with stunning supporting photography – some reaching back more than 100 years.
“Because of my exposure – served on the board for 34 years and been a resident of Troy for 54 years -- I’ve seen the
University from a lot of different angles,” Dr. Hawkins said.
In fact, Dr. Hawkins is president pro-tempore emeritus of the University’s Board of Trustees, and he’s personally
known the last four presidents or chancellors. His mother taught with Charles Bunyan Smith, a down-the-street
neighbor, the first and only alumnus to serve as president. He was appointed a trustee in 1980 and served with Dr.
Ralph Wyatt Adams for nine years and led the push for Dr. Jack Hawkins Jr. to be named chancellor.
“I just felt like I owed it to others to put some of this stuff down in writing,” he said. “I had some things like my
wife’s mother’s yearbook from State Normal School that I thought would be good to share.”
From original documents in the basement of the Pike County Courthouse and the University Archives, the six-month
project turned into a two-and-a-half year odyssey.
“The most difficult thing about it was making sure it was right,” Dr. Hawkins, a veterinarian, admitted. “It was
challenging working in a room that was really just a bunch of stuff stacked up. It was easy to get sidetracked.”
Yet with the challenges, he’s drawn a great reward from the exercise.
“What’s great is the fact that everybody wants me to sign the book. That may not mean much to a lot of people, but
it means a whole lot to me,” he said. “It’s the accumulation of a lot of friends over the years and it’s very rewarding
that they wanted a copy of the book.”
“Turning Points” is available in the Barnes & Noble University Bookstore on the Troy Campus, Jean’s Flowers in
Troy, Troy Antiques and Pike Animal Clinic in Troy.
By Clif Lusk