The world of higher education suffered a great loss this past weekend as Dr. Freddye Turner Davy, Director of the Honors Program at Hampton University and longtime NCHC member, passed on Saturday, June 2nd, 2012.
Dr. Davy was an educator of students for over fifty-eight years. She spent the first thirty-four of those years as a public school teacher in Arkansas, Washington, D.C., and Maryland. Along the way, she received degrees from Philander Smith College, the University of Maryland, and Vanderbilt University.
After her career in public schools, she spent seven years at Benedict College in Columbia, South Carolina, and served as a visiting lecturer at the University of Nigeria before becoming Director of the Hampton University Honors College in 1994, a position that she continued to hold until her passing. At Hampton, she was an integral part of developing the honors curriculum, initiating honors seminars, and developing the various rituals for induction and graduation.
Dr. Davy’s influence was significant well beyond her campus positions. She was the founder and executive director of the National W. E. B. Du Bois Honor Society, was co-founder of the National Association of African American Honors Programs, and held elected positions in the Virginia Collegiate Honors Council, the Southern Regional Honors Council, and the National Collegiate Honors Council. Honors professionals from within NCHC recognize Dr. Davy as “a powerful NCHC force for a number of years.”
Many educators benefited from Dr. Davy’s wisdom and the clarity of her words and ideas and appreciated the scope of her influence. Dr. Davy was frequently a voice of reason in conflict. Without posturing or pontificating, she was able to bring out the best in her colleagues and lead them away from the shoals of conflict as a voice for inclusion, reason, and transparency.
Dr. Davy’s presence, intellect, contributions, and spirit will be sorely missed in the honors community.
More about Dr. Davy is available on the Hampton University website.