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Lifting His Voice: A Legacy of Change

As part of its “Lift Every Voice” series, the Connecticut Post recently published an interview with Southern’s Director of Community Engagement James Barber, ‘64, M.S. ’79. The interview, “Finding his passion in sports in the 60s, James Barber crafts legacy of change at SCSU,” written by Quinton Hamilton, appeared in the June 15, 2021, edition of the paper.

For more than 50 years, James Barber, ‘64, M.S. ’79, has given dedicated service to Southern, its students, and the surrounding community. In 1971, Barber launched Southern’s first Summer Educational Opportunity Program (SEOP), which over time successfully opened the door to a college degree for scores of minority students. He also led the university’s affirmative action office in the 1970s, served as director of student supportive services for more than 20 years, and now helps to advance Southern’s mission as director of community engagement. He was recognized by the SCSU Alumni Association with its 2016 Distinguished Alumnus Award and was a successful Owls coach for almost 25 years, training numerous track champions and many All-Americans. His expertise also saw him coach both the men’s and women’s USA track teams at national and international championships.


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