The college introduced women's basketball to the line up of intercollegiate athletics.
John Lee Pratt, a long-time General Motors executive who attended R-MC for one year
in 1899-1900, bequeathed $2.4 million to the college -- the largest gift by a single
donor to that date. CIA Director (and later U.S. President) George W. Bush addressed
the audience at R-MC's commencement exercises May 30.
The college embarked on the five-year, $7.17 million "Challenge Campaign." Dr. Alan
J. Chenery, Sr., donated most of the funds to construct a modern press box at Day
Dr. Ladell Payne was brought from California to be the college's 13th president.
The National Science Foundation awarded R-MC a grant of $250,000 to upgrade computer
use at the college. Washington and Franklin Hall, Old Chapel, and Pace Hall were
named state and national historic landmarks.
The college's endowment exceeded $10 million and Estes Dining Hall opened. The college
formed a Board of Associates to serve as ambassadors for the college and consult
with the Board of Trustees.
The Bassett Internship Program began modestly. (It now extends to every academic
department.) A new Honors Program was established. Estes Dining Hall was dedicated
in May, and 29 women became pledges of Phi Mu, the college's first sorority.
Gail Gugel became the college's first female student government president. The capital
campaign, "Our Heritage, Our Future" was kicked off. The goal was set at $15 million.
The college received a gift of $1.056 million from the Gerard B. Lambert Memorial
Foundation to restore Washington and Franklin Hall. (The foundation belonged to
Mrs. Paul Mellon, granddaughter of Jordan Wheat Lambert, class of 1871, who had
spearheaded the fundraising to build the building.)
The college established a study abroad program with sites in France and Spain.
Washington and Franklin Hall reopened after 30 years, and the college completed
its $15 million campaign, "Our Heritage, Our Future." The endowment exceeded $20
The McGraw-Page Library was dedicated, with author Tom Wolfe as the speaker. A holiday
fire destroyed the 100-year-old Sigma Alpha Epsilon fraternity house. There were
no injuries since most students were gone for the Christmas holiday.
After years of playing a split-division athletic program, R-MC sports were united
in the NCAA Division III. The Society of Alumni marked its 150th anniversary.
Nearly 800 students, faculty, and staff received immunizations against measles when
two cases were confirmed on campus.
Randolph-Macon defeated Hampden-Sydney College 17-10 in the two colleges' 100th
anniversary football game on Day Field. Beverley E. Dalton of Altavista, Va., became
the first female chair of the Board of Trustees. Three students placed second in
a national robot-building contest, behind a group of professional Ph.Ds.
The college offered new majors in environmental studies, international relations,
and international studies. The endowment exceeded $30 million.
The Hugh Stephens Baseball Field was dedicated; new townhouse apartments were opened,
and the Carnegie Foundation again rated R-MC as a Baccalaureate College I, placing
it among the most elite colleges in the nation. A women's studies major was added,
and the Butler Language Laboratory opened.
The college launched a $41.5 million campaign, "Shared Values - One Vision," with
Olympic gold medal winner Cathy Rigby as guest speaker.
The college became affiliated with the Agora Excavation in Athens, Greece; dormitories
and offices were wired for the Internet; and the college created its first World
Wide Web home page. The Yellow Jackets women's basketball team competed in the "Sweet
16" tournament of the NCAA Division III. The college's first Athletic Hall of Fame
was created. A 10-week, summer undergraduate research program was established and
an accounting major was approved.
Dr. Roger Martin came to Randolph-Macon as the college's 14th president. Renovation
of Pace Hall into a center for the arts began with a $1 million gift from Mr. and
Mrs. William Armistead. An endowment fund of more than $500,000 was created in honor
of retiring R-MC President Ladell Payne and Presidential Associate Jean Payne. The
college's total endowment reached $50 million.
Roxane Gilmore, a member of the R-MC faculty, added "First Lady of Virginia" to
her title when her husband, James Gilmore, was elected governor of the state. The
college held its first presidential inauguration in 18 years with the installation
of Roger Martin as the 14th president. The Brock Center
for recreation and fitness was dedicated. Joan and Macon Brock '64 provided
the signature gift for the facility.
Ten-year-old Greg Smith matriculated as the college's youngest-ever freshman, attracting
worldwide attention. A new strategic plan identified five goals for the college's
The college celebrated the conclusion of the "Shared Values - One Vision" campaign,
in which $51 million, $10 million more than the goal, was raised for capital projects,
endowment, scholarships, faculty professional development, professorships, and the