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Hendrix Honors Two Faculty Members with Distinguished Professorships

CONWAY, Ark. (April 4, 2011) – Hendrix College will bestow two distinguished professorships at a special convocation Thursday, April 7, at 11:10 a.m. in Staples Auditorium.

Stephen W. Kerr will be installed as the Virginia A. McCormick Pittman Distinguished Professor of Economics and Business. A 1976 alumnus of Hendrix, Kerr joined the faculty in 1979, after completing his master’s from Southern Methodist University and receiving his CPA designation. His primary teaching interests are federal taxation and financial accounting. He served as chair of the Business and Economics Department from 1985 until 1998. From 1999 through 2002 and again in 2004, he served as area chair for social sciences. An avid fan of Warrior athletics, he currently serves as a faculty fellow to the men’s basketball team and as an usher and communion steward at First United Methodist Church.

The Virginia A. McCormick Pittman Distinguished Professorship was established in 1981 by Dr. Margaret Pittman, a 1923 Hendrix graduate, a research scientist who was the first woman to head a major research lab at the National Institutes of Health and who helped develop the vaccines for typhoid, cholera and whooping cough.

Dr. Lawrence K. Schmidt will be installed as the Harold and Lucy Cabe Distinguished Professor of Philosophy. Dr. Schmidt received his bachelor’s degree in philosophy from Reed College in 1972, a master’s degree in philosophy from the University of New Mexico in 1978, and a Ph.D. in philosophy from Duisburg University in Germany in 1983. He joined the Hendrix faculty in 1984. He has published numerous articles on Gadamer’s philosophical hermeneutics, as well as translating several of Gadamer’s essays. From 1989 to 2003 he organized the international hermeneutic conferences in Heidelberg, Germany.

The Harold and Lucy Cabe Distinguished Professorship was established in 1977 in recognition of the Cabe family’s long-time and generous support of Hendrix.

“Professors Kerr and Schmidt enjoy the esteem of their colleagues as well as the respect and affection of their students,” said Dr. Robert L. Entzminger, Provost and Dean of the College. “They are accorded this honor in recognition of their long and distinguished service to Hendrix.”

Hendrix, founded in 1876, is a selective, residential, undergraduate liberal arts college emphasizing experiential learning in a demanding yet supportive environment. The college is featured in the 2010 edition of the Princeton Review as one of the country’s best 371 colleges, was identified as the nation’s top “Up and Coming” liberal arts college for 2011 by U.S. News and World Report, and is ranked among 45 “Best Buy” colleges by the 2011 Fiske Guide to Colleges. Hendrix has been affiliated with the United Methodist Church since 1884. For more information, visit