Dr. Clea Parker was selected as the President of Southeastern Louisiana University in 1968, and served his alma mater ('48) for over twelve years. During his tenure as president, Dr. Parker presided over some of the most prosperous years in the history of the University. Southeastern had several new facilities open during his presidency, including the Humanities Building, the Teacher Education Center, the Health & Physical Education Building, the Athletic Building. Dr. Parker also oversaw the construction begin on the new University Center.
Dr. Parker experienced Southeastern's enrollment grow over 40% during his twelve years as president. One of his major goals was to improve the faculty as the number of teachers holding the Ph.D. increased substantially during his tenure. A hallmark of the Parker administration was increased student involvement in the University, as he was the first Southeastern president to name students to important committees. In short, Dr. Parker changed Southeastern Louisiana College to Southeastern Louisiana University significantly during the years of his stewardship.
In addition, Dr. Parker's wife, Mrs. Peggy Parker, was Southeastern's "First Lady" during the twelve years that Dr. Parker spent as president of the University. Her continual support of her husband only strengthened his tenure. They also had the experience of having young children live in the President's residence and grow up with the Southeastern campus as their home.