Southeastern honors former President Clausen for lifetime achievement


Monday, April 30, 2018 Sally Clausen
by: Tonya Lowentritt 

     HAMMOND – Former Southeastern Louisiana University President and life-long educator Sally Clausen will be honored with a Southeastern Lifetime Achievement Award as part of the university’s commencement ceremonies at 10 a.m. on Saturday, May 12, at the University Center.
     That morning the university will confer more than 1,000 degrees on students who are graduating with bachelor’s, master’s and doctoral degrees.
     Recognized as one of the nation’s most dynamic and effective leaders in education, Clausen began her career as a classroom teacher and has been a constant champion of education and student success. She served as the 12th and first female president of Southeastern from 1995 until her appointment in 2001 as head of the University of Louisiana System.
     “Dr. Clausen’s accomplishments during her tenure at Southeastern are numerous,” said Southeastern President John L. Crain. “She was particularly effective in her work with legislators and other elected officials, advocating on behalf of Southeastern and its students, obtaining $80 million in state capital outlay funds for campus improvements, as well as achieving a 51 percent increase in state appropriations and a 23 percent increase in faculty salaries. She led the university through one of its first comprehensive strategic planning processes, ultimately leading to, among other achievements, a large increase in private funding and a 68 percent boost in African-American enrollment”
     Prior to coming to Southeastern, Clausen served four years as Louisiana’s Commissioner of Higher Education, a role she reprised in 2008, making her the only person to serve as Louisiana’s Higher Education Commissioner twice. She also served as Louisiana’s Secretary of Education from 1992 to 1995.
     Her many honors include induction into the Louisiana Center for Women and Government Hall of Fame in 1998 and receiving the “Thinking Outside the Box” Award from U.S. Senator Mary Landrieu of Louisiana in 2000. She was also inducted into the Louisiana Political Museum and Hall of Fame in Winnfield in 2007.
     During her career, Clausen held leadership roles with numerous professional education organizations including serving as Vice Chair of the National Association of University System Heads, Executive Committee Member of the Board of Directors of the American Association of State Colleges and Universities, and member of the Southern Regional Education Board. She also served as the executive director of the Ingram Center for Public Trusteeship and Governance, an affiliate of the American Association of Governing Boards of Universities and Colleges.
     Clausen received a bachelor’s, master’s and doctorate in education in 1967, 1971, and 1980, respectively, from Louisiana State University. She was inducted into the LSU Alumni Hall of Distinction in 2004.

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