UA In the News — June 14

UA names first chief diversity officer
Tuscaloosa News – June 13
A former Purdue University official will be the first chief diversity officer at the University of Alabama. The university announced G. Christine Taylor as the new vice president and associate provost for diversity, equity and inclusion on Tuesday. Taylor will start Aug. 1, pending approval by the University of Alabama System board of trustees. “This role is critical to supporting the University’s strategic goal for an inclusive and diverse community,” Provost Kevin Whitaker said in comments released by UA. “We believe Dr. Taylor will provide the leadership, vision and oversight necessary to enhance our already strong commitment to diversity, equity and inclusiveness.”
Birmingham Business Journal – June 13
UA researchers look to python blood for clues in treating diabetes
Fox 6 (Birmingham) – June 13
There could be a slithery solution to treating Diabetes. A professor at the Capstone wants to find out just how it could work. Dr. Stephen Secor along with students are studying Burmese pythons to see how the snake’s blood could help people with diabetes. The snake’s organs grow tremendously while they are eating and they shrink back to regular size after digestion. This growth, and then subsequent repair of organs such as the pancreas could help with diabetes treatments. A $2.5 million grant from the National Institutes of Health is finding that python study on diabetes at UA.

Tuscaloosa officials break ground on bigger business incubator center
Fox 6 (Birmingham) – June 13
Supporters call The Edge a business incubator. Now more than five years old, this baby outgrew its current location and is moving to a bigger location. Officials with the City of Tuscaloosa, the University of Alabama, and the Chamber of Commerce of West Alabama broke ground on the new $11 million Edge facility Monday.

Ha Ha Clinton-Dix gets a summer job – June 13
When the Green Bay Packers break for the summer after Thursday’s final day of mandatory minicamp, free safety Ha Ha Clinton-Dix will still be working – at his summer job. On June 2, the former Alabama All-American started an unpaid internship with Brown County (Wisconsin) Circuit Court Judge Don Zuidmulder. He hopes to work with Zuidmulder for 180 hours this summer to earn six credits toward his undergraduate degree at the University of Alabama. Clinton-Dix is a criminal-justice major and will lose his nickname while at work.

UA political science professor comments on Attorney General’s testimony
WVUA (Live interview) – June 13
Joining me now is assistant professor of Political Science at The University of Alabama Dr. Allen Linken. What’s your initial take on Attorney General Sessions’ performance? Sure, I think the first really significant thing is that it was under oath. So, last week Director Comey testified under oath. There’s this feeling that somebody who swore an oath would tell the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth. Then it was a bunch of people telling a story that wasn’t under oath. So now you have sort of contestable stories under oath.

7 reasons property buyers use LLCs, from legit to not – June 13
The use of a limited liability company in a real estate transaction doesn’t mean the deal is suspicious, or even all that unusual. But it means at least one party to the property deal took a step that helps shield their identity from public view, according to experts in corporate law, real estate transactions and financial fraud … Susan Pace Hamill, a law professor at the University of Alabama who studies the evolution of limited liability companies in the U.S., noted that property transactions in this country have historically been quasi-public in nature. Deeds and other records are public documents, providing a level of disclosure about the property’s history, value and ownership, for a variety of reasons in the public interest.

Bigger than us: Volunteers complete River of Life projects
Jackson Progress-Argus – June 13
Dozens of volunteers last week completed more than half a dozen home improvement and repair projects as part of the 14th annual River of Life event. Organized by members of Stark United Methodist Church .… Ryan Ware, who attends the University of Alabama, has been volunteering with River of Life for five years. She first heard about it at her home church in Newnan. “It’s a great experience,” she said. “The work we’re doing is bigger than us.”

Tapping Their Potential
School News Network – June 13
Meet the League of Everyday Guys Inspiring Our Neighbors (not to be confused with the comic book-series turned-movie “The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen”). Somehow, though, this league – made up of Caledonia High School and middle school students – make “everyday” seem quite extraordinary … Caledonia graduate Collin Green, now a junior at the University of Alabama, started the program as a high school junior with help from Duncan Lake Middle School counselor Phyllis Powers-Fata.

Some anti-drought programs face cuts
Capitol Weekly (California) – June 13
For the past 5 years, parched Californians suffered through the state’s worst drought. Wildfires, reduced crop production, environmental damage, cities running dry – all were part of the misery. But with the drought now broken by an unprecedented wet season and snow pack, it’s possible to look back and see the positives develop, especially when it comes to the state budget. (Ed’s Note: Jessica Duncan is a Capitol Weekly intern from the University of Alabama.)
More than 80 local students receive degrees from Alabama
Decatur Daily – June 13
More than 80 local students received degrees from the University of Alabama during spring commencement.

Tuscaloosa County alumni association hosts wine tasting
WVUA (Tuscaloosa) – June 13
The Tuscaloosa County Chapter of the National Alumni Association of The University of Alabama held its annual membership wine tasting. The event with wine and food donated by local businesses, was held at Spirit’s Wine Cellar in Northport. The goal was to raise money for scholarships for Tuscaloosa County students to attend The University of Alabama.

UA students, local orgs find way to give fallen trees new life
Crimson White – June 14
William MacGavin has been woodworking since he was 11 years old. Over the years he’s salvaged wood from Christmas trees left on the curb, trees downed in storms or trees cut down by a city to make didgeridoos and other projects. So when he saw a construction crew taking down some oaks, pines and magnolias near North Lawn Hall while it was being constructed, he asked where they were taking the wood.  “They said ‘Oh we’re just hauling this off somewhere. It’s either going to be mulched or just probably taken to the dump to rot’ and that really bothered me,” MacGavin said.  “I’m a woodworker, so I was like ‘That is some quality logs right there and it be great if the University could recycle those.’”  MacGavin, who recently graduated from UA with a degree in architectural engineering, was also president of the Green Building Council. He and other members began brainstorming ideas about how to save the wood from trees that are taken down or fall down on campus.

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.