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Site Highlights NC State Student Leaders’ Legacies

CHASS has a long history of fostering student leadership. That legacy is chronicled in a  website created by NC State Libraries. The site, developed for the Student Leadership Initiative, uses oral histories, documents, photos and videos to share the experiences of some of the university’s top former student leaders.

Visitors to the site will find a treasure trove of stories that tell the history of the university in the context of world events and influences. Here’s a sampling:

Eric Moore (Communication) was the first African American elected to NC State’s student government. He served as president of the Student Senate in 1969. Moore describes what campus life was like for black students in the late 1960s. Moore is co-founder and Chief Development Officer at Rashmoor Media, LLC,  and a managing partner for the Onnidan Group. He taught communications at Fayetteville State University for 21 years.

Brooks Raiford (Political Science), student senate president (1988-1990) and student body president in 1990, was in a leadership position during a tumultuous time in NC State’s history as controversy about improprieties in the basketball program resulted in the firing of Jim Valvano. Raiford, who serves as president of the CHASS advisory board, is president and CEO of the North Carolina Technology Association.

Harold Pettigrew (Political Science), student body president in 2000-2001, is currently managing director at Business Global Solutions in Washington, DC. He credits his experiences of representing the student body before the NC State University Board of Trustees as key to his career preparation.  Pettigrew helped create the Wolfpack Student Initiative (later retitled Stafford Student Leadership Endowment) to honor NC State students with an annual scholarship based on demonstrated financial need and leadership in student organizations.

Tony Caravano (Criminology) served two terms as student body president (2003-2005). His legacy includes establishing the “Red Terror Transit”during home football games to safely transfer students to Carter-Finley Stadium free of charge and serving as a strong voice for students against tuition hikes.Caravano worked for NC State Senator Marc Basnight and as deputy state director for US Senator Kay Hagan before becoming vice president of higher education sales for Strategic Initiatives.

During her presidency from 2010-2011, Kelly Hook (Political Science) implemented several programs including the “Distinguished Professor Lecture Series” that honors three student favorite professors and invites them to speak on campus. Hook also traveled to Washington, D.C., to discuss the importance of Pell grants with North Carolina legislators. Hook is currently public relations manager at Prezi in San Francisco.

The site also highlights CHASS faculty who served as mentors to outstanding student leaders. For example, former Gov. Jim Hunt, who served as student body president from 1957-1959, pays homage to the late Abraham Holtzman, professor of political science. Hunt says he developed his personal and political philosophies, including his opposition to segregation, in classes with Holtzman and others.

The Student Leadership Initiative site highlights more than 130 former student leaders and provides video interviews with over 30 who share memories of their experiences on campus. The project will add new profiles as research continues. Happy exploring!