(August 18, 2009)

Contact: Rick DelaHaya, Centenary News Services, 318.869.5073

Convocation Introduces New President, Honors Student With National Recognition

Chick-fil-A Founder and CEO S. Truett Cathy to award 25,000th milestone scholarship to Centenary student and speak at Convocation


S. Truett Cathy
S. Truett Cathy

SHREVEPORT, La.—Students, faculty and staff will hear from the leaders of two major organizations during the annual President's Convocation when the College will be introduced to the new president, Dr. B. David Rowe, and hear from respected business leader, S. Truett Cathy, Founder and CEO of Chick-fil-A Inc.

Scholarship Award

The traditional all-campus gathering takes place Tuesday, Aug. 25 beginning at 11 a.m. in Centenary's Brown Chapel, and is open to all members of the community. The convocation launches the new academic year and offers special recognition to the incoming students and the 2010 graduating class at Centenary.

This will be the first opportunity for the Centenary community to be officially introduced to Dr. B. David Rowe, Centenary's new president, who took office Aug. 1. Prior to his duties as President, Dr. Rowe was the Vice President for Advancement at LaGrange College in Georgia.

Jamie Dyche
Jamie Dyche

Also speaking at this year's event will be S. Truett Cathy, Founder and CEO of Chick-fil-A Inc., a business that he and his brother, Ben, started in 1946 when they opened an Atlanta diner known as The Dwarf Grill (later renamed The Dwarf House). Through the years, that restaurant prospered and led Cathy to further the success of his business. In 1967, Cathy founded and opened the first Chick-fil-A restaurant in Atlanta's Greenbriar Shopping Center. Today, Chick-fil-A is the second-largest quick-service chicken restaurant chain in the United States based on annual sales.

Prior to the Convocation, Cathy will be at the Bossier City Chick-fil-A restaurant to honor Centenary freshman Jamie Dyche as Chick-fil-A's 25,000th Leadership Scholarship recipient. Bossier City restaurant operator, John Roden; Centenary College President, Dr. Rowe; Bossier City Mayor, Lorenz "Lo" Walker; and Parkway High School Principal Joe Huffman will also attend the milestone presentation. The event is scheduled to take place at 9:30 a.m. at the Bossier City restaurant located at 2601 Beene Blvd. near I-220 and Airline Drive.

Dyche received the scholarship through the national program, which, since 1973, has awarded $25 million in scholarship money to restaurant team members who have demonstrated excellence in the areas of work, education, and community and leadership development. In Louisiana alone, Chick-fil-A has awarded the $1,000 Leadership Scholarship to nearly 500 restaurant team members.

Dyche has worked with Roden since he first opened his Bossier City Chick-fil-A franchisee location in June 2007. "Jamie exemplifies the qualities of an exceptional team member with strong leadership skills, great customer service, and a winning attitude," said Roden. "It's a pleasure to reward those efforts with one of our scholarships and she is very deserving of the additional attention for being the 25,000th recipient."

Along with the Chick-fil-A award, she has received Centenary College's Trustee's Scholarship and Centenary Academic Award. She plans to pursue a major in education and a minor in music with the intent to earn her master's and become an elementary school teacher.

About Centenary College of Louisiana

Centenary College is a private, four-year arts and sciences college affiliated with the United Methodist Church. Founded in 1825, it is the oldest chartered liberal arts college west of the Mississippi River and is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools. Centenary is one of 16 colleges and universities constituting the Associated Colleges of the South and is regularly rated as one of the top colleges in the South. In 2008 Centenary College celebrated 100 years in Shreveport and Bossier City.