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DSU President Ennis sets Day of Service for tornado victims in Rolling Fork

By February 9, 2024President
DSU students, faculty and staff will return to Rolling Fork during Inauguration Week to assist in the continuing disaster cleanup.

CLEVELAND, Miss. — As part of the events surrounding his inauguration as Delta State University’s 9thpresident, Dr. Dan Ennis has organized a Day of Service in Rolling Fork to take place on Friday, February 23. It is customary at many universities to adopt a community project around a new president’s inauguration, and Dr. Ennis determined that Rolling Fork would be an ideal location for such a project. Dr. Ennis began his duties at Delta State on June 1, 2023, and he will be officially inaugurated on Saturday, February 24.

First Lady of Delta State University Jen Ennis has been involved in the organization of the week’s events and said that Dr. Ennis developed empathy for the citizens of Rolling Fork even before he was named DSU’s president by the Board of Trustees of the Mississippi Institutions of Higher Learning.

She said, “Throughout the interview process, Dan set his news feeds to share highlights from the Delta and through those news sources, he heard about the devastating tornado that hit Rolling Fork even before he received the call from the IHL that he had been named as president. He immediately became concerned about the impact on DSU students who were from Rolling Fork and began contemplating how he could help.”

Britt Williamson, president and chairman of Rolling Fork Rising said, “We are very thankful for the students from DSU coming to help us here in Rolling Fork. Seeing young men and women volunteering and giving of their time to help us in our recovery is a great encouragement to everyone in town.”

A group of 50 DSU students, faculty and staff will spend the day cleaning up trash, painting newly built houses and helping with the numerous other tasks that linger in the wake of the tornado. Susan Perry, Director of Marketing at the Bank of Anguilla in Rolling Fork, is coordinating community outreach and directing the volunteers to the projects that need them the most.

A complete schedule of inauguration week events along with travel and accommodations information can be found on the President’s Office page of the DSU website. Information on assisting with disaster recovery in Rolling Fork can be found on Rolling Fork Rising’s website.