TUSCALOOSA, Ala. — In honor of Marilyn Williams Elmore and her husband John Durr Elmore, The University of Alabama Board of Trustees recently approved the establishment of The Marilyn Williams Elmore and John Durr Elmore Endowed Professorship in the College of Arts and Sciences.
The professorship, which is funded by the couple’s estate gift in excess of $300,000, provides stipends to recruit nationally and internationally distinguished teacher-scholars as well as to ensure the retention of mid-career faculty whose teaching and research skills are fully developed.
The first three Elmore professorships were awarded Nov. 10 to Dr. Kim Caldwell, professor of biological sciences; Cornelius Carter, professor and director of dance; and Dr. Richard Fording, professor of political science.
The professors represent each of the College’s three divisions, and each will receive $5,000 annually for three years to support their research.
“This gift helps to enhance and perpetuate the quality of our faculty and their research,” said Dr. Robert Olin, dean of the College of Arts and Sciences. “We are honored by the Elmores’ generosity and are grateful to have such wonderful alumni who seek to give back to their alma mater.”
Caldwell plans to use her funds to study Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s disease in her research laboratory; Fording says his stipend will be used to research and write a book on the political mobilization that culminated in the election of Donald Trump; and Carter expects to use the award to cover the travel costs required to build national and international relationships with various dance companies and institutions.
Marilyn Williams Elmore, a 1944 UA alumna, participated in and contributed to many civic organizations throughout her life. She served as a board member and then president of the Children’s Aid Society. She was also a member of the Jefferson County Medical Auxiliary, the Junior League of Birmingham, the Birmingham Botanical Society, the Grapevine and Dirt Daubers Garden Clubs and the Highland Book Club.
She volunteered for the Birmingham Symphonic Society and the United Way. And, in her later years, she served on the Leadership Board of the College of Arts and Sciences and the board of the Linly Heflin Unit.
John Durr Elmore, a 1943 UA alumnus, was a private practitioner of psychiatry at the Frank Kay Clinic from 1951 until his retirement in 1989.
He served on the part-time faculty of the department of psychiatry at The University of Alabama, Birmingham until 1972, and during his long career in medicine, he was on the staffs of the Carraway Methodist Hospital, the Baptist Medical Center Montclair, the Brookwood Medical Center, St. Vincent’s Hospital and the Children’s Hospital.
He was a member of the American Medical Association, the American Psychiatric Association, the Southern Psychiatric Association, the Medical Association of the State of Alabama and the Jefferson County Medical Society. He also served as president of the Alabama District Branch of the American Psychiatric Association.
Marilyn Elmore died Jan. 30, 2005, and she was followed by her husband Feb. 21, 2014.
The University of Alabama, the state’s oldest and largest public institution of higher education, is a student-centered research university that draws the best and brightest to an academic community committed to providing a premier undergraduate and graduate education. UA is dedicated to achieving excellence in scholarship, collaboration and intellectual engagement; providing public outreach and service to the state of Alabama and the nation; and nurturing a campus environment that fosters collegiality, respect and inclusivity.