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List of governors of Mississippi

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Governor of Mississippi
Coat of arms of Mississippi.svg
Arms of the state of Mississippi
Phil Bryant

since January 10, 2012
ResidenceMississippi Governor's Mansion
Term lengthFour years, renewable once
Inaugural holderDavid Holmes
FormationConstitution of Mississippi
SuccessionEvery four years, unless reelected
DeputyLieutenant Governor of Mississippi
Salary$122,160 (2013)[1]
WebsiteOfficial website

The governor of Mississippi is the head of the executive branch of Mississippi's state government[2] and the commander-in-chief of the state's military forces.[2] The Governor has a duty to enforce state laws,[3] and the power to either approve or veto bills passed by the Mississippi Legislature,[4] to convene the legislature at any time,[5] and, except in cases of treason or impeachment, to grant pardons and reprieves.[6]

To be elected governor, a person must be at least 30 years old, and must have been a citizen of the United States for twenty years and a resident of Mississippi for at least five years at the time of inauguration.[7] The Constitution of Mississippi, ratified in 1890, calls for a four-year term for the governor. He or she may be reelected once (prior to a 1987 amendment to the state Constitution, governors were limited to one term).[2][8] The original Constitution of 1817 had only a two-year term for governor; this was expanded to four years in the 1868 Constitution.[9] The lieutenant governor is elected at the same time as the governor and serves as president of the Mississippi Senate.[10] When the office of governor becomes vacant for any reason, the lieutenant governor becomes governor for the remainder of the term.[11]

The governor of Mississippi is also appoints the members of the Institutions of Higher Learning Board of Trustees.

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Good Afternoon. My name is Julia Aubrey, and it is my great privilege to welcome you to the Ford Center for the Performing Arts. For your safety I would like to call your attention to the emergency exits from this building. Please take a moment to locate the exit nearest your seat. Should an emergency arise, please stay calm and move in an orderly fashion to the nearest exit. State law and university policy prohibits smoking in this and any buildings on campus. Please turn off all pagers and cell phones at this time. To begin this important occasion, I would like to introduce the University of Mississippi Faculty Jazz Septet that will perform one of Dr. Vitter's favorite tunes, Clarinet Marmelade by Larry Shields and H. W. Ragas. Thank you for your talent and expertise, gentlemen. That's a toe tapping way to start, isn't it? And now the Provost and Executive Vice Chancellor of the University of Mississippi, Dr. Morris Stocks. Good afternoon, and welcome to the ceremony of investiture of Jeffrey S. Vitter, Seventeenth Chancellor of The University of Mississippi. I present to you the College and Schools of the University of Mississippi in order of their founding led by our faculty and staff marshals. The College of Liberal Arts, founded in 1848, led by Dean Lee Cohen The University of Mississippi Libraries, founded in 1848, led by Professor Cecilia Botero The School of Law, founded in 1854, led by Dean Debbie Bell The School of Engineering, founded in 1900, led by Dean Alex Cheng The School of Education, founded in 1903, led by Dean David Rock The School of Medicine, founded in 1908, led by Vice Dean Loretta Jackson The School of Pharmacy, founded in 1908, led by Associate Dean David Gregory The School of Business Administration, founded in 1917, led by Dean Ken Cyree The Graduate School, founded in 1927, led by Dean Christy Wyandt The School of Nursing, founded in 1948, led by Dean Kim Hoover The School of Health Related Professions, founded in 1971, led by Dean Jessica Bailey The School of Dentistry, founded in 1975, led by Dean David Felton The Patterson School of Accountancy, founded in 1979, led by Dean Mark Wilder The Sally McDonnell Barksdale Honors College, founded in 1997, led by Dean Douglass Sullivan-Gonzalez The School of Applied Sciences, founded in 2001, led by Dean Velmer Burton The School of Graduate Studies in the Health Sciences, founded in 2001, led by Dean Joey Granger The Meek School of Journalism and New Media, founded in 2009, led by Dean Will Norton The General Studies Program, founded in 2011, led by Dean Tony Ammeter and The Bower School of Population Health, founded in 2016, led by Dean Bettina Beech. We are honored to have the official delegates of universities and colleges, learned societies educational, and professional associations with us today. I will announce the Universities and organizations represented in the order of founding: Yale University 1701 The University of Pennsylvania 1740 Princeton University 1746 Washington & Lee University 1749 The University of North Carolina 1789 Williams College 1793 The University of Louisville 1798 The University of Virginia 1819 Indiana University 1820 Amherst College 1821 The University of Alabama System 1831 Mercer University 1833 Tulane University 1834 Duke University 1838 The University of Notre Dame 1842 The University at Buffalo 1846 The University of the South-Sewanee 1857 Averett University 1859 Swarthmore College 1864 The University of Kansas 1865 The University of Kentucky 1865 Carleton College 1866 Purdue University 1869 Tougaloo College 1869 Alcorn State University 1871 Blue Mountain College 1873 Vanderbilt University 1873 Texas A&M University 1876 Jackson State University 1877 Champlain College 1878 Mississippi State University 1878 The American Historical Association 1884 Mississippi University for Women 1884 Ouachita Baptist University 1886 Clark University 1887 Clemson University 1889 Millsaps College 1890 California Institute of Technology 1891 Stanford University 1891 Adelphi University 1896 William Carey University 1906 Kent State University 1910 The University of Southern Mississippi 1910 Southern Methodist University 1911 Georgia State University 1913 Tennessee Technological University 1915 Texas Tech University 1923 Delta State University 1924 Sarah Lawrence College 1926 Northwest Mississippi Community College 1928 Mississippi Valley State University 1950 Palm Beach Atlantic University 1968 Western Michigan University 1972 The Houston Ministry of Science and Technology from the Republic of China 1984 and The University of North Georgia 2013 Please join me in welcoming the faculty of the University of Mississippi, official delegates of universities and colleges, learned societies, and professional associations. Faculty and delegates, you may be seated. I will now announce the platform party. Please hold your applause until everyone in the platform party has been introduced. The Chair of the Senate of the Faculty of the University of Mississippi, Dr. Brice Noonan, bearing the Mace. The Honorable Thad Cochran, United States Senator The Honorable Roger Wicker, United States Senator The Honorable Tate Reeves, Lieutenant Governor of the State of Mississippi The Honorable Philip Gunn, Speaker of the Mississippi House of Representatives The Honorable Gregg Harper, United States Representative for the 3rd Congressional District of Mississippi The Honorable Trent Kelly, United States Representative for the 1st Congressional District of Mississippi The Honorable George "Pat" Patterson, Mayor of the City of Oxford The Honorable Jeff Busby, Vice- President of the Board of Supervisors for Lafayette County Dr. Glenn Boyce, Commissioner of Higher Education for the State of Mississippi Dr. Doug Rouse, President of the Board of Trustees of the Institutions of Higher Learning for the State of Mississippi Mr. C. D. Smith Jr., Vice President of the Board of Trustees of the Institutions of Higher Learning for the State of Mississippi Ms. Rose Flenorl, Chair of the University of Mississippi Foundation Board of Directors Dr. Hal Moore, President of the University of Mississippi Alumni Association Ms. Gazel Giles, President of the University of Mississippi Staff Council Dr. LouAnn Woodward, Vice Chancellor for Health Affairs and Dean of the School of Medicine Mr. Austin Powell, 2016-2017 Associated Student Body President of the University of Mississippi The Reverend Joe Tonos, Pastor of St. John the Evangelist Catholic Church From the Board of Trustees of State Institutions of Higher Learning for the State of Mississippi, we welcome: Mr. Tom Duff, Dr. Ford Dye, Mr. Shane Hooper, and Mr. Alan Perry Thank you, members of the IHL Board of Trustees. I will now introduce other members of our platform party from the University of Mississippi. Dr. Alice Clark, Vice Chancellor for University Relations Mr. Larry Sparks, Vice Chancellor for Administration and Finance Dr. Brandi Hephner LaBanc, Vice Chancellor for Student Affairs Dr. Josh Gladden, Vice Chancellor for Research and Sponsored Programs Mr. Ross Bjork, Vice Chancellor for Intercollegiate Athletics Dr. Ralph Didlake, Associate Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs, University of Mississippi Medical Center Dr. Charles O'Mara, Associate Vice Chancellor for Clinical Affairs, University of Mississippi Medical Center Dr. Richard Summers, Associate Vice Chancellor for Research, University of Mississippi Medical Center Dr. Noel Wilkin, Senior Associate Provost Dr. Don Cole, Assistant Provost and Assistant to the Chancellor for Multicultural Affairs Mr. Wendell Weakley, President and CEO of the University of Mississippi Foundation Mr. Lee Tyner, University of Mississippi General Counsel Mr. Perry Sansing, Associate General Counsel and Special Assistant to the Chancellor for Governmental Affairs Mr. Jon Scott, Director of Public Relations Ms. Sue Keiser, Chief of Staff to the Chancellor Mr. Kirk Purdom, Executive Director of Alumni Affairs Dr. Nosa Egiebor, Senior International Officer Please join me in welcoming these members of our platform party. It is my pleasure to introduce the 14th Chancellor of the University of Mississippi and President of Southern Methodist University, Dr. R. Gerald Turner. It is also my great pleasure to introduce the 15th Chancellor of the University of Mississippi, Dr. Robert C. Khayat. Ladies and Gentlemen, please rise and join me in welcoming the 17th Chancellor of the University of Mississippi, Dr. Jeffrey S. Vitter. Please remain standing for the presentation of colors by the University of Mississippi Army, Navy, and Air Force ROTC Units, followed by the singing of the National Anthem by the University of Mississippi Concert Singers Thank you, you may be seated. It is now my privilege to introduce our special guests, beginning with Chancellor Vitter's family. I will ask each of you to stand and remain standing so that we can recognize you. Please welcome our first lady, Mrs. Sharon Vitter; Chancellor and Mrs. Vitter's daughter, Dr. Jillian Vitter; son, Captain Scott Vitter and daughter, Ms. Audrey Vitter. Also, we are pleased to welcome the Chancellor's brother, Professor Al Vitter III, and his wife, Alison; the Chancellor's sister, Ms. Tootie Jackoniski, and her husband, Jim; brother, Mark Vitter, and his wife, Mary; brother, Senator David Vitter, and his wife, Wendy; Mrs. Vitter's sister, Ms. Kathy Steele, and her husband, Steve; and Mrs. Vitter's brother, Mr. Jerry Weaver. We are also pleased to have Dr. Linda Keena and Mr. Morgan Freeman, special friend of the Vitters and our university. Please join me in welcoming the Vitter family. Thank you. I will introduce other special guests in the audience at this time. I'll ask each of you to stand and remain standing so that we may recognize you. Please welcome The Honorable Lynn Fitch, Treasurer of the State of Mississippi The Honorable Delbert Hosemann, Secretary of State for the State of Mississippi, who also serves as our delegate for the University of Notre Dame The Honorable Jim Beckett, a member of the Mississippi House Representatives The Honorable Mark Baker, member of the Mississippi House of Representatives The Honorable Terry Burton, Senator from the State of Mississippi The Honorable Josh Harkins, Senator from the State of Mississippi The Honorable Briggs Hopson, Senator of the State of Mississippi The Honorable Jay Hughes, House of Representatives for the State of Mississippi The Honorable Nolan Mettatal, House of Representatives for the State of Mississippi The Honorable Gray Tollison, Senator from the State of Mississippi The Honorable Ronnie Musgrove, the 63rd Governor of the State of Mississippi and Former Ambassador to Portugal, Mr.John Palmer. Please recognize these special guests. We are pleased to have several presidents from our IHL sister institutions. I will ask you to stand and allow us to recognize you. Dr. Rodney Bennett, President of the University of Southern Mississippi Dr. William Bynum, President of Mississippi Valley State University Dr. Mark Keenum, President of Mississippi State University Dr. Bill Laforge, President of Delta State University And Dr. Al Rankins, President of Alcorn State University Thank you president for being with us today. Presidents, thank you, and you may be seated. We thank all of you for making the time to join us today for this very special moment in the history of the University of Mississippi. And we especially appreciate our current and retired faculty and staff, our alumni, and our students who are participating today. Thank you. It's my pleasure now to introduce our special speakers. It's an honor to introduce Senator Thad Cochran. Senator Cochran is the third-most-senior active serving member of Congress. He was elected to the U.S. Senate in 1978. He is currently serving as Chairman of the Senate Appropriations Committee and has held many other important leadership positions in the Senate during his lengthy service. Senator Cochran is a strong advocate for Mississippi in every way. Please join me in welcoming Senator Cochran. Thank you very much. I appreciate being invited to be a part of this event today. It's quite and honor. Thank you for joining, inviting me to join you in celebrating the investiture, first of all, of Dr. Jeff Vitter, the chancellor of the university. Ole miss continues to grow and prosper, producing leaders who have helped shape it in the world class university it is today. I'm confident that Dr. Vitter will lead us to new heights. In his discipline of computer science, Chancellor Bitter has worked to understand how to use modern technology to better understand large amounts of data and to discover new solutions to very difficult problems. Technology has produced advances that are increasingly important in our efforts to maintain our national security, strengthen our economy, and improve people's lives. Dr. Vitter is committed to ensuring that Ole Miss will be able to help meet our state's challenges in the future. I'm proud of the universities work with state, local, and federal officials to help build national research capacity to serve as successful incubators for American innovation. I look forward to working with Chancellor Vitter to build on these successes. It is my pleasure to offer my congratulations to Dr. Vitter on his investiture as chancellor of the University of Mississippi. I look forward to seeing Ole Miss prosper and grow under his leadership. Thank You. Thank you, Senator Cochran It is also my pleasure to introduce Senator Roger Wicker. Senator Wicker has represented Mississippi in the U.S. Senate since 2007 and began his service in Congress representing Mississippi's First Congressional District in 1994. He holds many prominent positions in the Senate and is a champion for health, growth, and national security. Please join me in welcoming Senator Wicker Dr. and Mrs. Vitter, members of the Ole Miss family, and friends of Higher Learning, in case you missed it, we Americans got a new president elect this week. Today the University of Mississippi official gets a new chancellor. We've had 12 US presidents during my short lifetime, and only 5 chancellors, so this sort of occasion doesn't happen very often. This is historic. Jeffery Vitter takes the reins today with a lot of goodwill and a lot of history behind it. And all the things I have seen, and the places we have been during the past six and a half decades while I have been watching. During the years of chancellor J.D. Williams, William Faulkner won the Nobel Prize. Dr. James Hardy, of the University of Mississippi Medical Center, performed the first human lung transplant and the Rebels got a new head coach named John Howard Vaught who would go on to recruit a red headed Delta quarterback with good genes. During the time of Chancellor Porter L. Fortune when I studied here, Neal Armstrong stepped foot on the moon, Ole Miss acquired Rowan Oak and hired Willie Morris as writer in residence. The separate School of Accountancy was established, nationally renowned I might add, and the University of Mississippi welcomed its first dental students. It was also during the era of Dr. Fortune when Ole Miss became the sole provider of marijuana to the federal government for research purposes, whose idea was that? Turns out we were so good at growing that particular natural product that it lead to the Thad Cochran Natural Products Research Center during the Gerald Turner years. Also during Chancellor Turner's time the Berlin Wall fell, Vaught Hemmingway finally got stadium lights and Chancellor Turner decreed, no more modern architecture on this campus. Thank you Dr. Turner. About the time Chancellor Turner was turning things over to Robert Khayat, Ole Miss alumni Jim Barksdale and a group of the enterprising geeks figured out a way to make Al Gore's invention work for the average man and woman and we all learned to surf the web. During Dr. Khayat's time innovation thrived with UMMC's telehealth programs helping more than a half million Mississippians live longer and healthier. We added the Honors College, Croft Institute, Phi Beta Kappa. During Dan Jones administration, health advances continued. Ole Miss researches lead the fight against malaria and overall enrollment topped 20,000 and I have only scratched the surface. Chancellor Vitter has an impressive record upon which to build. His job is straightforward. Keep this historic university a place where Faulkner and Welty and Willie Morris and coexist with cutting edge technology. Where 21st century information and new media still remember subject and verb agreement. Where that special place that special idea, known as Ole Miss continues to lead the way for our state, our nation, and our planet. And oh a couple of national championships would also be nice. But know this Dr. Vitter, hundreds of thousands of alumni, students, faculty, staff and friends are counting on you and wishing you the best. Thank you, Senator Wicker It is now my pleasure to introduce Lieutenant Governor Tate Reeves, who has earned a reputation as a strong leader with a long-term vision for the state of Mississippi. Lt. Governor Reeves is past chairman of the Republican Lieutenant Governors Association. He was named one of the top 40 politicians under 40 by The Washington Post. Included among the national awards he has received is the State Legislative Achievement Award from the U.S. Chamber Institute for Legal Reform for the passage of the Attorney General "Sunshine Act." Please join me in welcoming Lt. Governor Tate Reeves. Thank you. It is truly my honor and privilege on behalf of the nearly three million Mississippians that I am blessed to represent, to congratulate Dr. Vitter on his formal inauguration as chancellor of the University of Mississippi, our states first university and one of 8 great public universities in our great state. Just this past Sunday, on November 6, Ole Miss marked a major milestone in its celebrated history for it was on November 6, 1848 168 years ago that this university began it's first session with a faculty of only 4 and an enrollment of just 80 students. This fall this great American university hit an all time record for its enrollment with 24,250 students attending classes at all of its campuses. Enrollment has steadily grown in recent years. In fact, in just the past ten years the number of students attending Ole Miss has climbed by nearly forty percent. But enrollment is not the only aspect of Ole Miss that is expanding. The universities commitment to research has never been stronger. Earlier this year Ole Miss was included among the elite group of R1 doctoral universities for highest research activity. This designation by the Carnegie classification of institutions of higher education is the definitive list for the top doctoral research universities in the United States. The University of Mississippi is the only Mississippi university amend these 115 institutions on this prestigious list that includes Harvard, MIT, Johns Hopkins, and others. These are just some of the many great strides made by Ole Miss and I have all the confidence in the world that Chancellor Vitter will build on the success this university has had in enrollment, in expanding its efforts to create a more diverse and inclusive campus, and increasing its commitment to research and academic achievement. When Ole Miss does better we all do better. Welcome, Chancellor Vitter, and I look forward to working with you during what I know will be a successful tenure at the University of Mississippi. Thank you. It is now my pleasure to introduce Speaker of the House Philip Gunn. Speaker Gunn began serving in the Mississippi Legislature in 2004. On January 3, 2012, he became the 61st Speaker of the House of Representatives in Mississippi. He has served on the Executive Committee of the Mississippi Republican Party and has served as Chairman of the Republican House Conference since it was formed in 2006. Under Speaker Gunn's leadership, the House of Representatives has focused on education reform, economic development, and government efficiency. Please join me in welcoming Speaker Gunn. Good afternoon it is indeed a pleasure for me to be here with you today. I am excited about this, this is the first time I've ever had to do this Dr. Vitter. I appreciate your invitation. It is indeed a pleasure for me to be here to officially welcome Dr. Vitter as the 17th chancellor of this university. I am a graduate of this institution and I know those who come here love this university. They believe in this university. They believe this university not only impacts Mississippi but impacts the world. They want to see this university succeed. They want to see it thrive. They are not just proud of the university they are passionate about it. This university impacts our state in ways that cannot be overstated. Currently the University of Mississippi and the University of Mississippi Medical Center combined to provide 27,000 jobs to the state of Mississippi. That is an economic impact of 2.8 billion dollars and over 157 million dollars in tax revenue each year. These numbers are impressive and we are very grateful for them. But the real value of this university in my opinion is that it changes the lives of students that is why those who graduate from this institution are so passionate about it. This can be seen in the fact that Ole Miss continues to remain student focused and continues to invest in the future of its students. A prime example is the construction of the science technology engineering mathematics building which Ole Miss is putting into action as we speak. This demonstration commitment to the students and will serve as the crown jewel of the university's science district which will be completed in the next few years. This state of the art facility is just one reason why buildings like this are needed here because this university is recruiting some of the best and brightest students in the world. We have students from all 50 states and over 90 countries around the world. The ACT scores for this university for the incoming freshmen class this fall was an average of 25.2. That is the highest ever in this history of this university. These rising test scores and demands of the academy show why Ole Miss has produced over 25 Rhodes Scholars, more than any other college in the state. This places it among the nation's lead institutions. In fact in the last few days we have learned that Austin Powell, this young man is sitting at the end of the row over here who is the president of the Associate Student Body and a native of North Mississippi and one of the speakers for today's program has been named as a Rhodes Scholar finalist. Congratulations Austin. These achievements and others like these demonstrate why this university needs a leader who will continue on this path, and who will take this university to the next level. I'm here to tell you that Dr. Vitter is that leader. His list of qualifications are highly impressive. He has either worked for or attended the following universities. The University of Kansas, Texas A&M, Perdue, Brown, Notre Dame, Stanford, clearly these qualifications have prepared him for the task of leading this university's diverse group of students. But there is more to Dr. Vitter than just his qualifications. I've known him for about a year now. And in that year I have found him to be a man of passion for learning. He's a man for passion for the academy. He is talked of his passion for learning. He is talked of his passion for retaining and recruiting the best faculty in the world. He is talked of his passion for advancing this university on the international stage. But most importantly he has talked of his passion for transforming students. He wants to see them mature, he wants to see them succeed, and he wants to see them have the skills that they need to transform our world. I have found him to be a man of character and integrity and he will serve our students and this university well. We are indeed fortunate to have someone of his caliber to lead this university. Under his leadership the future of this university and of the state is very bright. Having gotten to know him for this last year I can say without a doubt, Dr. Vitter, you are an Ole Miss Rebel. Thank you. Thank you, Speaker Gunn The University of Mississippi is fortunate to be located in Oxford, one of the most picturesque and culturally diverse communities in America. For more than a century and a half, we have shared our resources and our history. Representing the city of Oxford and the LOU community today is our esteemed mayor, The Honorable George "Pat" Patterson Good afternoon on behalf of the Board of Alderman Lafayette board of supervisors and everyone in the LOU community we would like to add our welcome to the celebration investiture of the Chancellor Jeffery Vitter. As I have said many times, in many places, and what could have been a very difficult transition, Chancellor and Mrs. Vitter came to Oxford bleeding red and blue. On his first day of work, won the Sugar Bowl, and the next week I looked up and there was Sharon Vitter at the community museum depot's fundraiser in line with that gracious smile and introducing herself to everyone inside. But beyond that, we celebrated a partnership between the university and the community and now enters its 169th and 17th chancellor. Jake Thompson, John Stockard and James Martin were prominent early citizens who had recently named their young community Oxford after the great university's name. They were champions of education and were determined that the state university would be located here. One can only wonder what people would say if they could ride their horses down University Avenue today looking for little null in which to build their Lyceum. As the smallest division one host community in the United States we share everything: victories, defeats, beautiful spring days, autumn afternoons, ice storms, tornado warnings, and even our fire department. Our efforts train unison far more than they are not and Chancellor Vitter has made it clear and certain that he will continue the full partnership between the University and the community that makes this such a unique place in the world and the envy of every other town gown relationship in the nation. As our tourism efforts most proudly proclaim, Oxford, Ole Miss, visit once and you'll always want to come back. We are pleased that the Vitter family is here and we look forward to Chancellor Vitter's leadership many, many years to come. Thank you, God bless you, and God bless this great institution. Thank you, Mayor The University of Mississippi is part of a system of outstanding universities in our state which is governed by the Board of Trustees of State Institutions of Higher Learning. Here to bring greetings on behalf of our sister institutions and the Board of Trustees is Mr. C. D. Smith, Vice President of the IHL Board of Trustees. It is my pleasure to bring greeting on behalf o the board of trustees of the state Institutions of Higher Learning. The University of Mississippi is a special place. It has a rich and storied history but today we celebrate the dawning of a new chapter and a future that will be even brighter because of the leadership of Jeff Vitter, the leadership he will bring to the university. The University of Mississippi has educated generations of Mississippians and fostered research that has lead to discoveries that have not only transformed our lives but have impacted our regions, nation, and the world. This university is an essential part of the fabric of our state. Many of the state's leaders, past and present, have walked these hallowed halls. The leaders who have occupied the chancellor's office have left an indelible mark on the university and the state of Mississippi. Dr. Vitter will now lend his considerable skills and superb leadership abilities to shaping the University of Mississippi and the state. The Board of Trustees has great confidence in Dr. Vitter. We look forward to the achievements the institution will enjoy during his tenure and the legacy he will leave. Thank you, Mr. Smith Here to bring greetings on behalf of the University of Mississippi Foundation is Ms. Rose Flenorl, Manager of Social Responsibility at FedEx and Chair of the University of Mississippi Foundation Board of Directors. When I was a student at Ole Miss I attended an alumni association meeting. Then our Chancellor Porter L. Fortune, was to give greetings and remarks and told the following story about an Ole Miss Alumni who had been away from campus for a very long time because of his work. He came to Memphis for business and he decided he'd drive to campus just to see what had changed. He loved what he saw, then he noticed there was gonna be a football game on Saturday. So he found the ticket office and went to the desk and said "I'd like to purchase a ticket to the game". The young behind the counter said "I'm sorry sir this is sold out; it's been sold out for a long time". Alumni was disappointed but he left but then he remembered, although he had been away he had arranged for a 5 million gift to the University of Mississippi, and he received a gold card as part of the donation. So he went back and said "Excuse me young man, I don't mean to bother you but does the gold card make any difference. The young man recognized the significance of the gold card and he said "Sir you know what, I'm gonna make some phone calls and we are gonna find you a ticket." And he did. The alumni left but then he thought "I don't know what time the game starts". So he went back, "Excuse me one more time, young man, what time does the game start Saturday?" And the young man replied, "What time would you like the game to start?" "What time would you like the game to start?" To the Chancellor, Mrs. Vitter, special guest, administratives, faculty- staff, students, alumni and friends of our great university, greetings. If he had not visited the university in a long time, I understand the pride Chancellor Fortune's alumni must have felt as he toured our beautiful campus. Having enrolled at the University of Mississippi in the mid 1970's and subsequently having the opportunities to serve in a number of leadership positions, I've been a witness to the university's amazing metamorphosis, thanks to our faculty- staff, and administration. Many whom I have come to know personally and I hold in the highest regard for almost 4 decades I've had a front row seat as our leaders have helped Ole Miss grow, record enrollment and a record endowment. I've had a front row seat as we have become one of America's great public institutions of higher learning and recently one of the nation's top research institutions. According to Warren Bennis Leadership is the capacity to translate vision into reality. "Leadership is the capacity to translate vision into reality." Dr. Vitter, you are an academic visionary. We know that. We want to see the University of Mississippi transition from great to greater. Through our transformational power of education and through community outreach we are confident you are absolutely positively the right leader to make your vision a reality for our institution and we congratulate you on this historic day, your investiture as the 17th Chancellor of the University of Mississippi. As chair of the University of Mississippi foundation board of directors, I would be remised if I didn't mention that while our chancellor's play perhaps the most important role in moving our university toward higher levels of excellence they do not stand alone. They do not stand alone. Their accomplishments and achievements are supported by increasing numbers of loyal alumni and friends who give back to the university they love, in the form of endowments, scholarships and planned gifts. And we accept and appreciate any gift of any size. To say, um and to quote my minister of my small town of Clarksdale Mississippi, "Give as the lord as blessed you". Even as a student I knew the true punch line to the Chancellor Fortune story was the important need for private funds to make Ole Miss a great public university. I quote Margret Thatcher "No-one would remember the Good Samaritan if he'd only had good intentions; he had money too. I have witnessed time and time again the transformative power of private giving. I have seen first-hand how the financial support of generous donors changes the life's of Ole Miss students, while bolstering outstanding work from our faculty and our staff. I quote Rosa Parks " Each person must live their life as a model for others". Each person must live their life as a model for others. Under the leadership of Dr. Jeff Vitter, the onus is on all of us to be the models of excellence. It is our duty to give to our students. Our students are the life blood of our university. Give them an academic experience that is superior. We do this through mentorship. We do it through caring. We do it through compassion and we model excellence in the way we give back to the university we love, Ole Miss. We give our time we give our resources we give our hearts, to this university. Thank you Chancellor Vitter, for your great vision for our flagship university an institution of higher learning that transforms lives, communities and ultimately our world, for the better. Please know that on behalf of the University of Mississippi foundation, we pledge to support you throughout your tenure as our chancellor, as our leader. Lead on Chancellor Vitter, lead on. Thank you. Thank you, Ms. Flenorl. The University of Mississippi is proud of its outstanding faculty. One such faculty member is Dr. Brice Noonan, Associate Professor of Biology. In addition to his teaching, research and service responsibilities, Professor Noonan currently serves as the Chair of the Senate of the Faculty. I now ask Dr. Noonan come forward and bring greetings on behalf of the Faculty of the University. No pockets in these, got to keep it in the sleeve. Ok. It's a great honor and pleasure to welcome you, Chancellor Vitter to this university. On behalf of the faculty I extend to you the warmest of welcomes as you assume this most challenging leadership role. We the faculty pledge to you that we will continue in our dedication to both research and creative pursuits with a commitment to serving the university, the state of Mississippi, and the world. Chancellor Vitter, I have the honor of presenting you the mace. We in the faculty understand the mace to be a symbol of the covenant between you ad the chancellor ad we as scholars and teachers of this institution. In this way, we acknowledge your leadership and offer you our loyalty as you hold before us the claim of our higher calling: to love and cherish teaching and learning , research, scholarship, and service to others and to share in the spirit of intellectual discovery with all who join us here. On behalf of the Mississippi faculty I present the mace to you, Chancellor Vitter Thank you, Dr. Noonan I now introduce the current president of the University of Mississippi Alumni Association, Dr. Hal Moore, a 1976 graduate of our university with a Doctor of Medicine degree. Dr. Moore. Thank you Dr. Stocks. It is my honor and pleasure to greet you today on behalf of the Alumni Association. As president of the Alumni Association it has been my privilege to come to know Dr. Jeff Vitter. His academic credentials are amazing and well known and his unassuming friendliness, thoughtfulness and humor will delight the Ole Miss family. We also welcome Sharon, whose graciousness and university involvement has impressed us all. Today we celebrate the power of higher education to transform lives, especially of our students. I am confident that under Dr. Vitter's leadership our students will not only be prepared for a career but more importantly for life. William Faulkner said, " Never be afraid to raise your voice for honesty, and truth and compassion against injustice." Dr. Vitter understands this as we have already seen through his conversations, engagement and actions concerning the university's past, that will certainly help insure a bright unburdened and boundless future. He will be a superb mentor and model as lives are truly transformed at Ole Miss. Chancellor, the Alumni Association officers and staff look forward to working with you for years to come continuing a strong and effective relationship with your office. We look forward to being an integral component of your administration as the university is enriched and lives are transformed for the good of all. Chancellor Vitter, on behalf of the university's alumni let me say how proud we are to welcome you to the Ole Miss family. It is now my honor to present you with the official crest of the University of Mississippi. An emblem composed of the columns of the lyceum together with the opening date of our university. An emblem that reminds us of the rich tradition that is ours as we enter an exciting and promising future. Inscribed on the base of the crest is our motto, On behalf of knowledge and wisdom. Chancellor, we are confident that you will lead us with knowledge and wisdom. We enthusiastically embrace this next chapter of the university's history. May god continue to bless you and your family. May god continue to bless the University of Mississippi. Thank you. One very important segment of the University community is our dedicated and hard working staff. Bringing greetings today on behalf of our staff is Ms. Gazel Giles, President of the Staff Council. On this wonderful occasion, it is my pleasure as president of the Staff Council to offer greetings from the staff members of the University of Mississippi. On a daily basis, our staff members perform a wide variety of jobs to ensure that students, faculty, and other staff members enjoy an environment that is conducive to moving the University safely and comfortably into the future. We each seek to make a difference in the lives of those fellow Rebels whom we encounter each day. On behalf of staff council we embrace your theme, Chancellor Vitter, the power of higher education to transform lives, community, and world. Dr. Vitter has inspired me to believe that higher education means having the passion and motivation to continue learning beyond the bare minimum. We celebrate this day because of Dr. Vitter's' commitment to making a difference that will endure into the future and his recognition of the work that we do. Thank you for your leadership. As president of the staff council, I speak on behalf of all staff members in letting you know that we are ready to join you on the journey into the future of the University of Mississippi. Chancellor Vitter, I have the honor of presenting you the key of the University of Mississippi. The Key is a symbol of stewardship and reminds us all of our duties to show the continued goodwill of our university community, our beautiful campus, and our human and material resources. I pledge to you the support of the staff as we work together to achieve the goals of this great university. Thank you. Thank you, Ms. Giles. The University of Mississippi is also very proud of its outstanding Medical Center. Please welcome Dr. LouAnn Woodward, Vice Chancellor for Health Affairs and Dean of the School of Medicine. Good afternoon. I am delighted to be here today to formally congratulate our new chancellor and his family on this day of investiture. I want to extend my personal congratulations and greetings and greetings and congratulations on behalf of the faculty, staff, and students of the medical center. Chancellor Vitter, I have the honor of presenting you this gift on behalf of the medical center. This work is a stylized rendition of the computer model of the human cardio vascular system developed by Dr. Arthur C. Guyton. Chairman of the Department of Physiology and Biophysics from 1955 to 1989, Guyton was then and is still today considered one of the world's leading physiologists. His model represents the complex integrated computer analysis of the numerous factors involved in overall circulatory control. Revolutionary when he and his colleagues published it in 1972, the model represented what are now the accepted modern concepts concerning the physiology of the human circulatory system. This is very special to us at the medical center and it is my hope that it will also be special to you and speak to your love and passion for computer science. We at the medical center are committed to quality education, transformational scientific discovery, and extraordinary clinical care for all Mississippians. The work that is represented here in this drawing characterizes what is best in our history, what we stand for today, and our vision for the future. We know that you are also committed to this work as you join us as our new leader on the journey to a healthier Mississippi. Congratulations and welcome, Chancellor Vitter. Thank you, Dr. Woodward, for your leadership of our fine Medical Center. Our university exists to provide quality education to students. We are very proud of our students, one of whom is Mr. Austin Powell, the 2016-2017 Associated Student Body President. Mr. Austin Powell, please speak to us. Good evening. On behalf of the Associated Student Body I bring you greetings as we celebrate the investiture of our 17th chancellor, Dr. Jeffrey S. Vitter. Dr. Vitter, you've been here a little bit under a year and already you have a love and a dedication to the university and its creed. Your dedication is extremely evident to myself and other students and through your Flagship Forums, the town halls, and the engagement with other student groups you have show that you are committed to living out the creed in your daily life. Being Associated Student Body president, I'm fortunate to work with the Chancellor. And speaking from personal experience it's been a privilege to get to know you. To be the chancellor at any university can be challenging but to be the chancellor at a place like the University of Mississippi, a place that is known to call the fond memories to the hearts of all those who've encountered it, it can be both rewarding and difficult. When issues arise both on the campus and in the nation it seems as if all eyes are on the University of Mississippi. And Dr. Vitter, you cam to this position with such tact and dedication, the leadership and the temperance you displayed, coupled with your determination and your ability to listen to not only students but faculty members and other staff members as well, it's inspiring. And because of these qualities you've demonstrated there has been an impact on the way that I and many other students look at our university, our history, and our legacy. Your influence has shown the students our broader campus community, the power of higher education to transform lives, the communities, and the world. Chancellor Vitter, I have the honor of presenting to you the University of Mississippi creed. The creed is tat the heart of the Ole Miss community and serves as a reminder of our values. During your time at the university so far you've taken steps to ensure that the creed is being lived out by every student every day. The creed reads "the University of Mississippi is a community of learning dedicated to nurturing excellence and intellectual inquiry in an open and divers environment. I believe, as a voluntary member of this community, I believe in respect for the dignity of each person, I believe in fairness and civility, I believe in personal and professional integrity, I believe in academic honesty, I believe in academic freedom. I believe in being good stewardship of our resources." Dr. Vitter, I know that you will uphold these values and you will encourage others to follow your example. We present this gift to you, Chancellor Vitter. Thank you, Austin, I now invite Father Joe Tonos, Pastor of St. John the Evangelist Catholic Church, forward for the Prayer of Installation. I'll have to lower this even more. Thank you, Chancellor Vitter, and thank you for the opportunity to offer this prayer. The Cubs won, Trump is president, and the University of Mississippi has a Catholic chancellor. Tomorrow there will be a plague of locusts and frogs so you get ready with your god. I do appreciate this opportunity. Some of y'all just found out "What! How'd that happen?" Today is the feat day ion the Catholic calendar of St. Leo the Great. St. Leo was called the Great because in 452 and invader was coming to the city of Rome to sack it. He had already sacked all the outlying regions and all he needed to conquer was Rome. Pope Leo when before him and said "You have conquered the empire, do not conquer this city. Conquer your desires." And the attacker turned around and left Rome alone and his name was Attila the Hun. Chancellor Vitter, in this day and age, has a lot to conquer but he has mastered himself. He is polite, he is courteous, he's studios, he's ponderous, and he's faithful and I think whatever evaders, whatever Huns come your way I know you'll be strong. St. Leo the Great says "Mercy wishes thee to be merciful, righteousness to be righteous, that the creator may be seen in creature and the image of God may be reflected in the mirror of your human heart." I believe those are words that you definitely have lived by and I'm impressed that you continue to live by those. Ignatius of Loyal, the founder of the Jesuits, writes "Lord Jesus, teach me to be generous, teach me to serve you as you deserve, to give and not to count the costs, to fight and not to heed the wounds, to toil and not seek for rest, to labor and not seek reward, except that of know that I do Your will." And so now I pray that the blessing of Almighty God, the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit, descend upon you today, Chancellor Vitter, and every day of your life. And may God bless you and may He bless the University of Mississippi. Well, thank you Faculty Jazz Sextet and thank you Chancellor Vitter for selecting wonderful music for today's investiture. And now, we will have the administration of the Oath of Office and the presentation of the University Medallion. This will be conducted by Dr. Doug Rouse, President of the Board of Trustees of State Institutions of Higher Learning, and Dr. Glenn Boyce, Commissioner of Higher Education. Ladies and Gentlemen, Dr. Glenn Boyce. Good afternoon! It is a great pleasure to join you for this wonderful occasion. This is a special moment in the history of this great public university. It is particularly gratifying to be a part of the investiture of Jeffrey S. Vitter, a man with a wealth of experience in higher education who has a great vision for the future of this special university. Dr. Vitter understands how to bring the campus together and we have the expectations that his will transform his vision into reality. The University of Mississippi is a renowned university and Dr. Vitter understands what this means. He has served at some of the top universities in this nation, as previously mentioned. Brown University, Duke, Purdue, Texas A&M and the University of Kansas. He comes to us by way of the University of Kansas, where he served as provost, executive vice chancellor and Roy A. Roberts Distinguished Professor for more than five years. During his tenure at the University of Kansas, he helped transform the KU campus by initiating and co-leading the campus-wide development of the university's Strategic Plan: Bold Aspirations. The creation of the first-ever university-wide KU core curriculum, expansion of the Schools of Engineering and Business, the focus of research around four strategic initiatives and the growth of technology commercialization are all examples of how the university was enhanced during his tenure. These are just a few of the ways Dr. Vitter left his mark on the University of Kansas. Prior to joining KU, Dr. Vitter served on the faculty in the Department of Computer Science and Engineering at Texas A&M. He also served as provost and executive vice president for academics at A&M. A renowned computer scientist and academic leader, Dr. Vitter served as the Frederick L. Hovde Dean of the College of Science and professor of computer science at Purdue University. At Duke University, Dr. Vitter held a distinguished professorship as the Gilbert, Louis and Edward Lehrman Professor and served as chair of the Department of Computer Science in the College of Arts & Sciences. Before joining Duke, Dr. Vitter served on the faculty and in various leadership roles in the Department of Computer Science at Brown University. Dr. Vitter graduated in mathematics with highest honors from the University of Notre Dame in 1977. He holds a doctorate in computer science from Stanford University and an MBA from Duke University. A native of New Orleans, Dr. Vitter is a National Science Foundation Presidential Young Investigator, a Fulbright Scholar, and an IBM Faculty Development Awardee. Sometimes, Sharon, I wonder how he ever found time to propose. I want you to know, ladies and gentlemen, what a great privilege it's been to get to know Jeff and Sharon. And I want to talk to Sharon for just one moment. Sharon, you have already become an integral part of the fabric of the Ole Miss community, giving your time generously and demonstrating you commitment to the university through her tireless service. I want to thank you and express our gratitude for your efforts in supporting Jeff as he leads the university. And I assure you, all of us in here know that your role can never be appreciated enough. I also want to express a welcome to the Vitter children and all the extended family that are here. And you too, Steve. It's great to see you. It sure is. Working with Dr. Vitter during the past 10 months, there is no doubt that he understands the transformative power of higher education. He understands how higher education transforms the lives of the students, giving them the knowledge, skills, abilities and confidence to pursue their dreams. He understands how higher education can transform the trajectory of families, lifting them out of poverty and giving them a brighter future for generations and generations to come. He understands how a leading research university like the University of Mississippi can harness intellectual resources and make the breakthroughs that will transform the future of our state and the lives of our citizens. Dr. Vitter understands that the university and the State of Mississippi are intrinsically linked. The future of each depends on the actions and choices of both. These are challenging times in higher education, in our state and in our country. I am certain that Dr. Vitter is prepared well for the challenges of leading our great university. Higher education will enable us to meet the challenges we face as a state and nation. As our universities, including the University of Mississippi, thrive, the state of Mississippi will thrive. With Dr. Vitter at the helm and all of you here today, and all of those around the world who love and support this university, I have no doubt that the University of Mississippi is poised to reach heights never before seen. I look forward to working with Dr. Vitter as this next chapter in the university's history unfolds. Now, before the investiture, Dr. Vitter, would you please join me at the podium. Many individuals have placed their faith and trust in the Board of Trustees of the State Institutions of Higher Learning, myself as the Commissioner, and the many members of the Campus Search Advisory Committee to make the right decision in appointing you as the 17th Chancellor of the University of Mississippi. As the one selected for this role, you have the hopes and dreams of many on your shoulders: The alumni hope you preserve and protect their alma mater. The faculty and staff hope you will be mindful of their interests and keep teaching and learning at the heart of the university. The people of Mississippi trust that you will help the state to thrive and prosper. The people and leaders of the state trust that you will be a good steward of the university's resources, including natural, human and fiscal. Most of all and most importantly, the students hope that you will provide them with personalized learning opportunities and the intellectual development necessary to succeed in the global marketplace of the 21st century. The University of Mississippi has been placed in your trust and care. The members of the Board of Trustees and I are confident you will fulfill and surpass these expectations placed before you. Dr. Vitter, I charge you to preside with fairness, humility and strength, striving always for excellence, knowledge and truth. I charge you to maintain and celebrate a climate that encourages the search for truth, a passion for justice and an expansion of the limits of knowledge. I charge you to serve the university with good stewardship, to protect and defend the university and to build the university to heights never before seen. Dr. Vitter, do you accept this charge? Hell yeah, damn right. As an alumnus of this university I can accept that answer. Let me now ask Dr. Douglas Rouse, President of the Board of Trustees of the State Institutions of Higher Learning, to conduct the formal investiture. Dr. Vitter, the Board of Trustees of State Institutions of Higher Learning selected you to serve as the 17th Chancellor of the University of Mississippi. You now have the privilege and opportunity to provide strong leadership and wise counsel to this great institution. Dr. Vitter, this Chain of Office that Glenn is displaying symbolizes the authority with which the Board of Trustees acknowledges the confidence placed in you as the Chancellor of the University of Mississippi. The chain symbolizes the links that bind the president to the faculty, staff, students, alumni and friends of the university. By virtue of the power and authority vested in me as President of Mississippi's Board of Trustees of State Institutions of Higher Learning, I hereby install you, Jeffrey S. Vitter, as Chancellor of the University of Mississippi and invest you with all of the powers and authority of that office. It is my pleasure to now present you with the 17th Chancellor of the University of Mississippi, Dr. Jeffrey S. Vitter. Thank you Provost Stocks. Welcome, everyone! Sue, can we do this every month? This is kind of fun. I also thank the members of the Board of Trustees of the Institutions of Higher Learning, Commissioner Boyce, and my fellow IHL presidents and administrators for your support and your service. I am privileged to be your partner in building a vibrant Mississippi through higher education. I offer my appreciation as well to the Federal, state, and local officials who are with us today. Your counsel and support are crucial elements in the success of this flagship university, and we are honored by your presence. To the Ole Miss family thank you for so readily welcoming and embracing my family. From day one, I have relied upon members of our superb Senior Leadership Group who are with us today , the excellent University of Mississippi Medical Center Executive Cabinet , the two "wonder women" Sue Keiser and Kim Barnes. Kim, where are you? Kim is behind the door. And a host of talented faculty, staff, students, and alumni across our many campuses. I believe in the adage that we all stand upon the shoulders of those who came before. And though they are too numerous to name, I would like to acknowledge the many mentors, collaborators, and friends whose support has made it possible for me to stand before you today. I am especially grateful to the IHL board, and to my siblings, family, & friends who not only encouraged Sharon & me to return to the South, but to the best possible place in the South, right here at Ole Miss! I'm only sorry that my parents could not be here today. They were amazing, loving people who instilled in my five siblings and me a passion for education and the importance of using education to help people. Sharon and I are so proud to have our three kids here today: Jillian, Scott, and Audrey. We love them deeply. They are each wonderfully talented and accomplished. But we are most proud that they are kind and loving individuals who sincerely care about others. Of all the things I say today, none will be more heartfelt than the statement that I would not be here were it not for Sharon. For the past 34 years, Sharon has been my life partner, my chief advisor, my champion. Anyone who has met Sharon understands that she is the real reason I was hired. She is consistently patient. Well, she's usually patient. And always both loving and steadfast. Sharon, I am so blessed to have you in my life and to share this day. Higher education creates opportunity as well as the ideas and innovations that drive our economy and society forward. I chose to be an academic leader because I am so passionate about the power of higher education. There is nothing more important to the future of our society than higher education. It is the great enabler that helps people lift themselves above their circumstances and disadvantages. I join in Nelson Mandela's belief that "education is the most powerful weapon you can use to change the world." I was drawn to this extraordinary University of Mississippi because of its rich tradition of academic excellence, strong sense of community, Recognized history as an economic driver and thought leader, and good fortune to be located in the culinary mecca of Oxford . Success of this magnitude is the shared legacy left to us by the thousands of faculty, staff, students, alumni, government leaders, and friends who have invested their time, talents, and resources in the university. And the crown of this legacy is the visionary leadership of former chancellors Gerald Turner , Robert Khayat , and Dan Jones, and Morris Stocks as provost and interim chancellor. I offer my personal thanks to each of you for your vision and your role in creating and advancing this incomparable university. When I arrived at Ole Miss 314 days ago, not that I'm counting, we began a dialogue about greatness and the hallmarks of being a flagship university. What does it mean to be a great university? And what does it take for our flagship university to go to the next level of excellence, to go from great to greater? And what is so distinctive about our university, so intrinsic to our very being, that we should never change as we go forward? This vitally important conversation began in January with the Flagship Forum, a 100-day listening and learning tour that touched thousands of stakeholders, and continued through university-wide senior leadership retreats and a Town Hall meeting in August that generated over 550 ideas. They are on the web. I would like to briefly summarize this 10-month conversation and how it can fuel our imagination for a bright and exciting future. The University of Mississippi is indeed what Chancellor Robert Khayat prophesied in his investiture address 20 years ago, a great American public university. We are indeed a great public international research university. While great institutions share many things in common, none is more primary than the relentless drive to be ever greater. Greatness has many aspects, but on a university campus, it all starts with academic excellence. In a commencement speech here 15 years ago, Jim Barksdale quoted Stephen Covey and said, "the main thing is to keep the main thing the main thing." That's my best Jim Barksdale impersonation. And, at the University of Mississippi, the main thing is academic excellence. Like all great universities, we measure ourselves against standards and metrics related to national rankings and academic performance. We also stand out nationally with unique academic programs and learning experiences, such as the Sally McDonnell Barksdale Honors College, which I will attest is the absolute best in the nation, and the Croft Institute for International Studies, and the list goes on and on. Greatness through academic excellence includes research excellence. For the first time in our history, this past February, the University of Mississippi achieved the pinnacle: the Carnegie R1 highest research activity designation, attaining a stature afforded only the top 2.5% of universities nationwide. The value of a University of Mississippi degree continues to increase, as attested by a student body that has doubled in size over the last 20 years. We are the largest university in the state, with the largest freshman enrollment. We have the highest entering ACT average and the highest entering grade point average, as well as the highest retention rate. As Mississippi's flagship university, we also embrace our responsibility to address our state's most pressing issues, many of which have to do with the health of Mississippians. As the only academic medical center in our state, the University of Mississippi Medical Center receives over 1 million patient visits each year and is a national leader in telemedicine. We are the preeminent complement to local hospitals and sustainable community healthcare, and we provide the leading venue in the state for trauma, pediatrics, transplants, and telehealth. We also promote economic and community development through partnerships, community-engaged scholarship, innovation, and entrepreneurship. Underneath our persona as a great public international research university beats the heart of who we are. At our core, Ole Miss is a family. It is in our DNA to enable every student, from the least prepared to the most prepared, to succeed and thrive. Every Day, across all our campuses, we see the power of higher education transform lives, communities, and the world. We are bound to one another through our UM Creed that calls upon us to respect every individual, embrace fairness and civility, and commit to integrity and academic freedom. An Ole Miss Rebel is an innovator, a mentor, a teacher, a teammate, a caregiver, a champion for others, and a fiercely loyal family member. Ours is a large and extended family, including tens of thousands of alumni, for whom Frank Everett's words ring true, "the university gives a diploma and regretfully terminates tenure, but one never graduates from Ole Miss." You are likely to exchange a "Hotty Toddy" with a fellow Rebel any place in the world, just as I did in a large square in Venice, Italy, this past summer. Ole Miss alumni give back. Literally. This past year, philanthropic gifts from our alumni and friends shattered our all-time giving record. Without their selfless support, we would not be where we are, and we would not be in a position to dream of what can be. We are standing atop a peak in our history, and, from where we now stand, we can see higher peaks. In becoming what we are, we have created greater capacity for what can be. So the important conversation we must have now is not "What makes us great?" but rather, "How do we go from great to greater?" "How will we get to that next level of excellence?" It goes without saying that in seeking to become greater, we will sustain and advance the excellence we have already established. Using our strengths as a spring board, we will together create a roadmap into the future focusing upon the four themes that emerged from the Flagship Forum: academic excellence, building healthy and vibrant communities, athletics excellence, and the enabler of them all: people, places, and resources. We live in an increasingly complex world with many pressing problems. Imagine what we can do when we make a great learning environment even greater by expanding international presence on our campuses, and educating our students, tomorrow's leaders, to prosper in a global society. No one person or discipline has the full breadth of knowledge capable of solving any one of the world's grand challenges. As management expert Ken Blanchard notes, "none of us is as smart as all of us." Just imagine what we can do if we identify university-wide priorities where we can be international leaders in addressing the important challenges in our state and world. Imagine what we can do if we take our collective strengths, leverage them, exploit multidisciplinary synergies, and in the process come up with imaginative solutions to these grand challenges! Today I am excited to announce that we will soon call for ideas of high-impact multidisciplinary research initiatives called Flagship Constellations. Flagship Constellations will comprise clusters of faculty, staff, students, alumni, and partners to address compelling challenges where no one discipline has all the answers and only collaboration and deep insights from multiple points of view will discover solutions. We will establish joint degree programs across disciplines and campuses, engage in strategic growth of our graduate programs, and establish key partnerships revolving around innovation and entrepreneurship. Intersecting our disciplines will take several forms. As an example, imagine what we can do when we build upon the momentum from our CEO Technology Summit from August to establish an interdisciplinary program in data science and big data, which will inform and support discovery and decision making across the spectrum from health & medicine, to science & engineering, to the arts, humanities & social sciences. Imagine what we can do when we intersect the arts and sciences, humanities and technology to reveal the NEXUS where true innovation lies. Famous biographer and fellow New Orleanian Walter Isaacson made that very point at the CEO Technology Summit, using the iPhone as an example of innovative design thinking that has transformed how we communicate. I am pleased to announce today that to our immediate East we will develop a Cultural Gateway to draw together our arts and cultural programs, anchored by this wonderful Gertrude C. Ford Center for the Performing Arts, one of the gems of our campus. This space will create performance, experiential learning, and enrichment opportunities that will support our community, our academic mission, and our region. Our greatness is visible across every spectrum, from the academic classroom to athletics and service. Athletics excellence, long a hallmark of Ole Miss, has achieved even greater heights under the leadership of Vice Chancellor Ross Bjork and his talented team of coaches, staff, and student athletes. Athletics is our front porch to the university, and it has ignited the passions of thousands of people as we have had unprecedented success in recent years: from our student-athletes this past semester achieving their highest-ever GPA of over 3.0 to construction of premier venues and fan experiences, and to multiple team rankings in the top 25 and the gaudiest Sugar Bowl ring I've ever seen! Ole Miss athletics continues to rise! I am proud to announce today that we will soon launch an athletics endowment initiative. Imagine what we can do with an endowed resource base to provide the resources to sustain competitive excellence. A key part of our flagship mission is to build healthy and vibrant communities, a mandate that takes many forms. First and foremost, we have a responsibility to keep our communities, and all those that live in them, healthy. As the state's only academic medical center, we are uniquely positioned to lead healthcare strategy for the state. Imagine what we can do to improve the health of Mississippians with our new Bower School of Population Health and its Department of Data Science. Only the third of its kind in the country, the Bower School will transform healthcare practice in Mississippi and beyond. Imagine what we can do when each year we graduate a new cadre of students from our School of Education in our Mississippi Excellence in Teaching Program. These students are among the best and brightest anywhere, and they commit to stay in Mississippi to teach Mississippi children. Imagine their impact on future generations of Mississippians! As we all know, community needs in Mississippi are not limited to healthcare and education, and range from economic to environmental to policy. Imagine what we can do if we channel the talents of our university, the entire university, to partner with towns and cities, one at a time, to enhance every aspect of their community life? Imagine! This big idea surfaced in our university-wide leadership retreat and was appropriately dubbed "The Big Idea." As we move forward and further develop the Big Idea, we will be looking to all of you to identify resources and partnerships to support an integrated approach. And maybe you can even come up with a better name than "the Big Idea." Nothing we imagine will be possible without great people. As Jim Collins, the author of Good to Great, observes, "great vision without great people is irrelevant." At Ole Miss, our people are the comprehensive enabler for all that we might do in achieving excellence and building healthy & vibrant communities. Sharon and I came here because of the people, because of all of you. The audacious record of success that the University of Mississippi has achieved is because you imagined what could be and made it so. Recognizing that our greatest asset is our people, we will continue to invest in them, renew them, reward them, and appreciate them. Imagine what we can do when we increase the resources dedicated to their development. I am pleased today to announce that we will grow faculty excellence by creating new endowed professorships around the Flagship Constellations and by providing more opportunities for engaged scholarship and creative achievement. For our highly talented staff we will also establish an endowment specifically to support the development, retention, and engagement of our highly talented staff. I believe deeply that excellence and diversity go hand in hand. Diversity, whether it's ethnicity, gender, sexual orientation, nationality, culture, academic training, and scholarly discipline, diversity makes us stronger as a community. Diversity makes our ideas better, our approaches more effective, our results stronger, and our relationships deeper. I know from personal experience that when done in a principled way, we can and will focus upon hiring for excellence and, by so doing, simultaneously build diversity. They truly do go hand in hand. We will sustain an atmosphere that is welcoming and respectful of individuals and multiple viewpoints. We will model and actualize our UM Creed, and we will serve as a guide to the nation in learning from our past and creating a vibrant positive future. Noted poet Maya Angelou was right when she said, "People will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel." What we can be will require additional resources. Whether it be our new STEM Building on this campus, the expansion of translational science and clinical trial capabilities and a new Children's Hospital wing at our Medical Center in Jackson, or exciting new programs and venues, we must work hard to plan in a focused way, to garner resources around that vision, and to execute the plan. And I commit, with your help, to moving our endowment, which currently sits at $600 million, to over $1 billion. I believe our greatest calling in life is to make the lives of others better. And that is why I believe, more strongly than I ever have, that it is the mission of higher education to transform lives, communities, and the world. Ole Miss has transformed lives, including mine and, I know, many of yours. Just imagine what more we can do. As French novelist Marcel Proust so aptly observed, "The real voyage of discovery consists not in seeking new landscapes, but in having new eyes." We became a great American public university because you imagined we could be and made it happen, proving that composer Richard Wagner was right when he said that "imagination creates reality." Just imagine how far we can go and what we can do. Thank you again, all of you, for allowing Sharon and me to be a part of this tremendous family, for letting us realize our personal goals in a place of such amazing grace & beauty. We have lived in many places on our journey to arrive home here at the University of Mississippi. And we are so proud that we are Ole Miss Rebels! The next chapter in the life of this magnificent university sits squarely in all of our hands, waiting to be written and read by future generations. All of us will ultimately be defined by what we leave behind. It is our destiny as a flagship university to desire more, to give more, to be more and to leave more behind. It is our calling to transform lives, communities, and the world. Just imagine what we will do Just imagine. Thank you Thank you chancellor. Thank you for being our chancellor, for being a part of our family, and for that wonderful and inspirational address. Thank you. Well, you just sat down but I'm going to ask you to stand up again for the singing of the Alma Mater and remain standing until the conclusion of the choral benediction, sung by the University of Mississippi Concert Singers. The words of the Alma Mater are on the last page of your program. This brings a close to a glorious investiture ceremony. I invite our audience to remain in the hall until the faculty and delegates and the platform party have exited. Our sincere thanks to all who have joined us this afternoon to celebrate the beginning of a new chapter in the history of the University of Mississippi. We invite everyone to join us for a reception in the Circle immediately following this Investiture Ceremony. The audience may be seated. Will the platform party please recess, followed by the faculty and delegates?



Since Mississippi became a U.S. state, it has had 64 governors, including 55 Democrats and 6 Republicans. Democrats dominated after retaking control of the state legislature; they passed a Constitution in 1890 that disfranchised most African Americans, excluding them from the political system for nearly 70 years, and made it a one-party state. The state's longest-serving governor was John M. Stone, who served two terms over ten years (his second term was extended to six years by a transitional provision in the 1890 Constitution).[12] The shortest-serving governor was James Whitfield, who served ​1 12 months from 1851 to 1852. The current governor is Republican Phil Bryant, who took office January 10, 2012. His second term will end on January 14, 2020.

Governors of the Territory of Mississippi (1798–1817)

Political parties

  Democratic-Republican   Federalist

# Governor Took office Left office Party
Winthrop Sargent.jpg
  Winthrop Sargent May 7, 1798 May 25, 1801 Federalist
William C C Claiborne rectangleLAState.jpg
  William C. C. Claiborne May 25, 1801 March 1, 1805 Democratic-Republican
Robert Williams (Mississippi Governor).jpg
  Robert Williams March 1, 1805 March 7, 1809 Democratic-Republican
  David Holmes March 7, 1809 December 10, 1817 Democratic-Republican

Governors of the U.S. state of Mississippi (1817–present)

Political parties

  No party/Provisional   Democratic-Republican   Democratic   Republican   Union Democratic   Whig

# Governor Took office Left office Party Lt. Governor Term Notes
  David Holmes December 10, 1817 January 5, 1820 Democratic-Republican   Duncan Stewart 1 [N 1]
  George Poindexter January 5, 1820 January 7, 1822 Democratic-Republican   James Patton 2
Walter Leake.jpg
  Walter Leake January 7, 1822 November 17, 1825 Democratic-Republican   David Dickson 3 [N 2]
  Gerard Brandon 4
Gerard Chittocque Brandon.jpg
  Gerard Brandon November 17, 1825 January 7, 1826 Democratic [N 3]
  David Holmes January 7, 1826 July 25, 1826 Democratic   Gerard Brandon 5 [N 4]
Gerard Chittocque Brandon.jpg
  Gerard Brandon July 25, 1826 January 9, 1832 Democratic
  Abram M. Scott 6
Abram M. Scott (Mississippi Governor).jpg
  Abram M. Scott January 9, 1832 July 12, 1833 National Republican Fountain Winston[N 5] 8 [N 2]
Charles Lynch - Gouverneur von Mississippi.jpg
  Charles Lynch July 12, 1833 November 20, 1833 National Republican [N 6]
Hiram G. Runnels (Mississippi Governor).jpg
  Hiram Runnels November 20, 1833 November 20, 1835 Democratic 9
Hon. John A. Quitman, Miss - NARA - 528341.jpg
  John A. Quitman December 3, 1835 January 7, 1836 Whig [N 6]
Charles Lynch - Gouverneur von Mississippi.jpg
  Charles Lynch January 7, 1836 January 8, 1838 Whig 10
Alexander G. McNutt.jpg
  Alexander G. McNutt January 8, 1838 January 10, 1842 Democratic 11
Tilghman M. Tucker (Mississippi Governor).jpg
  Tilghman Tucker January 10, 1842 January 10, 1844 Democratic 13
Hon. Brown - NARA - 528693.jpg
  Albert G. Brown January 10, 1844 January 10, 1848 Democratic 14
  Joseph W. Matthews January 10, 1848 January 10, 1850 Democratic 16
Hon. John A. Quitman, Miss - NARA - 528341.jpg
  John A. Quitman January 10, 1850 February 3, 1851 Democratic 17 [N 7]
John Isaac Guion (Mississippi Governor).jpg
  John Isaac Guion February 3, 1851 November 4, 1851 Democratic [N 8]
James whitfield Gov.jpg
  James Whitfield November 24, 1851 January 10, 1852 Democratic [N 9]
Henry S. Foote Brady 1849.jpg
  Henry S. Foote January 10, 1852 January 5, 1854 Union Democratic 18 [N 10]
John J. Pettus.jpg
  John J. Pettus January 5, 1854 January 10, 1854 Democratic [N 9]
John J. McRae portrait..jpg
  John J. McRae January 10, 1854 November 16, 1857 Democratic 19 [N 11]
William McWillie.jpg
  William McWillie November 16, 1857 November 21, 1859 Democratic 21
John J. Pettus.jpg
  John J. Pettus November 21, 1859 November 16, 1863 Democratic 22
Charles Clark.jpg
  Charles Clark November 16, 1863 May 22, 1865 Democratic 24 [N 12]
William L. Sharkey portrait..jpg
  William L. Sharkey June 13, 1865 October 16, 1865 Provisional [N 13][N 14]
  Benjamin G. Humphreys October 16, 1865 June 15, 1868 Democratic [N 15]
Gen. Adelbert Ames - NARA - 527085.jpg
  Adelbert Ames June 15, 1868 March 10, 1870 Military [N 13][N 16]
  James L. Alcorn March 10, 1870 November 30, 1871 Republican   Ridgley C. Powers 26 [N 17]
Ridgley Ceylon Powers.jpg
  Ridgley C. Powers November 30, 1871 January 4, 1874 Republican   Alexander K. Davis[N 18] [N 19]
Gen. Adelbert Ames - NARA - 527085.jpg
  Adelbert Ames January 4, 1874 March 29, 1876 Republican 27 [N 20]
John M. Stone (Mississippi Governor).jpg
  John M. Stone March 29, 1876 January 29, 1882 Democratic [N 21]
  William H. Sims 28
Governor Robert Lowry, Jan. 29, 1882 to Jan. 13, 1890 (14099807806).jpg
  Robert Lowry January 2, 1882 January 13, 1890 Democratic   G. D. Shands 29
John M. Stone (Mississippi Governor).jpg
  John M. Stone January 13, 1890 January 20, 1896 Democratic   M. M. Evans 31 [N 22]
  Anselm J. McLaurin January 20, 1896 January 16, 1900 Democratic   J. H. Jones 32
Andrew Longino.jpg
  Andrew H. Longino January 16, 1900 January 19, 1904 Democratic   James T. Harrison 33
James Kimble Vardaman.jpg
  James K. Vardaman January 19, 1904 January 21, 1908 Democratic   John Prentiss Carter 34
Edmond Noel.jpg
  Edmond Noel January 21, 1908 January 16, 1912 Democratic   Luther Manship 35
Earl Leroy Brewer.jpg
  Earl L. Brewer January 16, 1912 January 18, 1916 Democratic   Theodore G. Bilbo 36
Theodore Bilbo.jpg
  Theodore G. Bilbo January 18, 1916 January 18, 1920 Democratic   Lee M. Russell 37
Lee M. Russell.jpg
  Lee M. Russell January 18, 1920 January 18, 1924 Democratic   Homer H. Casteel 38
HL whitfield Gov.jpg
  Henry L. Whitfield January 22, 1924 March 18, 1927 Democratic   Dennis Murphree 39 [N 2]
Dennis Herron Murphree in 1927.jpg
  Dennis Murphree March 18, 1927 January 16, 1928 Democratic [N 19]
Theodore Bilbo.jpg
  Theodore G. Bilbo January 16, 1928 January 19, 1932 Democratic   Cayton B. Adam 40
Governor Martin S. Conner, Jan. 19, 1932 to Jan. 21, 1936 (14123298914).jpg
  Martin Sennet Conner January 19, 1932 January 21, 1936 Democratic   Dennis Murphree 41
Hugh L. White.jpg
  Hugh L. White January 21, 1936 January 16, 1940 Democratic   Jacob Buehler Snider 42
  Paul B. Johnson Sr. January 16, 1940 December 26, 1943 Democratic   Dennis Murphree 43 [N 2]
Dennis Herron Murphree in 1927.jpg
  Dennis Murphree December 26, 1943 January 18, 1944 Democratic [N 19]
Governor Thomas L. Bailey, Jan. 18, 1944 to Nov. 2, 1946 (13936315729).jpg
  Thomas L. Bailey January 18, 1944 November 2, 1946 Democratic   Fielding L. Wright 44 [N 2]
49/50[N 23]
Fielding L. Wright portrait.jpg
  Fielding L. Wright November 2, 1946 January 22, 1952 Democratic [N 24]
  Sam Lumpkin 45
Hugh L. White.jpg
  Hugh L. White January 22, 1952 January 17, 1956 Democratic   Carroll Gartin 46
Governor James P. Coleman, Jan. 17, 1956 to Jan. 19, 1960 (14143043313).jpg
  James P. Coleman January 17, 1956 January 19, 1960 Democratic 47
Former Gov. and Mrs. Ross Barnett at Paul Johnson's Inaugural Ball, Jan., '64..png
  Ross Barnett January 19, 1960 January 21, 1964 Democratic   Paul B. Johnson, Jr. 48
Paul B. Johnson Jr.jpg
  Paul B. Johnson Jr. January 21, 1964 January 16, 1968 Democratic   Carroll Gartin 49
Governor John Bell Williams, Jan. 16, 1968 to Jan. 18, 1972 (14122979895).jpg
  John Bell Williams January 16, 1968 January 18, 1972 Democratic   Charles L. Sullivan 50
Bill Waller official.jpg
  William Waller January 18, 1972 January 20, 1976 Democratic   William F. Winter 51
Cliff Finch.jpg
  Cliff Finch January 20, 1976 January 22, 1980 Democratic   Evelyn Gandy 52
William F. Winter.jpg
  William Winter January 22, 1980 January 10, 1984 Democratic   Brad Dye 53
William Allain.png
  William Allain January 10, 1984 January 12, 1988 Democratic 54
  Ray Mabus January 12, 1988 January 14, 1992 Democratic 55
Kirk Fordice.jpg
  Kirk Fordice January 14, 1992 January 11, 2000 Republican   Eddie Briggs 56
  Ronnie Musgrove 57
David Ronald Musgrove.jpg
  Ronnie Musgrove January 11, 2000 January 13, 2004 Democratic   Amy Tuck[N 25] 58
Haley Barbour by Gage Skidmore.jpg
  Haley Barbour January 13, 2004 January 10, 2012 Republican   59
  Phil Bryant 60
Dewey Phillip "Phil" Bryant , Mississippi Governor, LAGOP GOTVR Dec2016 137 (31470349421) (cropped).jpg
  Phil Bryant January 10, 2012 Incumbent Republican   Tate Reeves 61 [N 26]

Other high offices held

This is a table of congressional, confederate, other governorships, and other federal offices held by governors. All representatives and senators mentioned represented Mississippi except where noted. * denotes those offices which the governor resigned to take.

Governor Gubernatorial term U.S. Congress Other offices held
House Senate
William C. C. Claiborne 1801–1805 (territorial) U.S. Representative from Tennessee, U.S. Senator from Louisiana, Governor of Orleans Territory, Governor of Louisiana
Robert Williams 1805–1809 (territorial) U.S. Representative from North Carolina
David Holmes (politician) 1809–1820
S U.S. Representative from Virginia
George Poindexter 1820–1822 H S Territorial Delegate, President pro tempore of the Senate
Walter Leake 1822–1825 S
John A. Quitman 1835–1836
Tilghman Tucker 1842–1844 H
Albert G. Brown 1844–1848 H S Confederate Senator
Henry S. Foote 1852–1854 S Confederate Representative from Tennessee
John J. McRae 1854–1857 H S Confederate Representative
William McWillie 1857–1859 H
Adelbert Ames 1868–1870
James L. Alcorn 1870–1871 S*
Anselm J. McLaurin 1896–1900 S
James K. Vardaman 1904–1908 S
Theodore G. Bilbo 1916–1920
Paul B. Johnson, Sr. 1940–1943 H
James P. Coleman 1956–1960 Fifth Circuit Court Judge
John Bell Williams 1968–1972 H
Ray Mabus 1988–1992 Ambassador to Saudi Arabia, United States Secretary of the Navy

Living former Governors of Mississippi

As of January 2018, there are four living former Mississippi governors, the oldest Governor of Mississippi being William Winter (served 1980–1984, born 1923). The most recent Governor of Mississippi to die was William Allain (served 1984–1988, born 1928) on December 2, 2013. The most recently serving governor of Mississippi to die was Kirk Fordice, (served 1992–2000), on September 7, 2004.

Governor Gubernatorial term Date of birth (and age)
William Winter 1980–1984 (1923-02-21) February 21, 1923 (age 96)
Ray Mabus 1988–1992 (1948-10-11) October 11, 1948 (age 70)
Ronnie Musgrove 2000–2004 (1956-07-29) July 29, 1956 (age 62)
Haley Barbour 2004–2012 (1947-10-22) October 22, 1947 (age 71)

See also


  1. ^ David Holmes was inaugurated as the first state governor on October 7, 1817, but Mississippi did not officially become a state until December 10, 1817.
  2. ^ a b c d e Died in office.
  3. ^ As lieutenant governor, filled term until next election.[citation needed]
  4. ^ Resigned due to illness.
  5. ^ The 1832 constitution abolished the office of lieutenant governor; the office was reinstated in 1868.
  6. ^ a b As president of the state senate, filled term until next election.[citation needed]
  7. ^ Resigned following an arrest for violating neutrality laws by assisting with the liberation of Cuba. He was found not guilty, but the political fallout led to his resignation.
  8. ^ As president of the senate, filled term until his senate term expired.
  9. ^ a b As president of the senate, filled unexpired term.
  10. ^ Resigned due to political tension over secession.
  11. ^ A constitutional amendment passed during McRae's second term moved the gubernatorial inauguration date from January to the prior November, shortening his term by two months. The date was restored to January in the 1868 constitution.[13]
  12. ^ Charles Clark's term effective ended when he was arrested by Union forces.
  13. ^ a b Appointed by President Andrew Johnson following the end of the American Civil War.
  14. ^ Resigned.
  15. ^ Forced to resign and physically removed from office by federal forces[citation needed] after his government failed to comply with Reconstruction.
  16. ^ Left office as Reconstruction ended.
  17. ^ Resigned to take an elected seat in the United States Senate; Alcorn's senate term began March 4, 1871 but he delayed taking it, preferring to continue as governor.
  18. ^ Impeached and removed from office.
  19. ^ a b c As lieutenant governor, filled unexpired term.
  20. ^ Impeached; made a deal with the legislature to resign, and all charges were dropped.
  21. ^ As president of the senate, filled unexpired term, and was later elected in his own right; since both the governor and lieutenant governor had been impeached, with the governor resigning and lieutenant governor being removed from office, Stone was next in line for governor.
  22. ^ The 1890 electoral term was extended to six years under the 1890 constitution in order to facilitate changes in the executive department.[12]
  23. ^ Mississippi numbers Wright as the 49th governor, 1946–48 (His predecessor Thomas L. Bailey's term, which Wright completed) and the 50th governor, 1948–52 (Wright's elected term)
  24. ^ As lieutenant governor, filled unexpired term, and was later elected in his own right.
  25. ^ Changed parties in 2002.
  26. ^ Bryant's second term expires on January 14, 2020; he is term limited.


  1. ^ "CSG Releases 2013 Governor Salaries". The Council of State Governments. June 25, 2013. Retrieved November 23, 2014.
  2. ^ a b c MS Const. art. V, § 116.
  3. ^ MS Const. art. V, § 123.
  4. ^ MS Const. art. IV, § 72.
  5. ^ MS Const. art. V, § 121.
  6. ^ MS Const. art. V, § 124.
  7. ^ MS Const. art. V, § 117.
  8. ^
  9. ^ MS Const. (1817) art. IV, § 1; MS Const. (1832) art. V, § 1; MS Const. (1868) art. V, § 1.
  10. ^ MS Const. art. V, § 128–129.
  11. ^ MS Const. art. V, § 131.
  12. ^ a b "John Marshall Stone Archived 2010-10-09 at the Wayback Machine." Mississippi History Now. Mississippi Historical Society. Retrieved September 5, 2009.
  13. ^ "John J. McRae Archived 2010-10-09 at the Wayback Machine." Mississippi History Now. Mississippi Historical Society. Retrieved September 5, 2009.
This page was last edited on 10 July 2019, at 15:08
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