The $27 million project producing Columbus State University’s new home for its College of Education and Health Professions will be named for the former CSU president who started the institution’s expansion explosion resulting in $112 million being invested into downtown.
The University System of Georgia Board of Regents on Wednesday approved CSU’s request to name its newest building after Frank Brown, who served as the institution’s president for 20 years before retiring in 2008. Faculty and staff are expected to begin moving into Frank D. Brown Hall in December, and classes are scheduled to start there Jan. 9.
CSU’s current president, Chris Markwood, noted the building on the site of the former Ledger-Enquirer property at the southwest corner of 12th Street and Broadway is at the “front door” of CSU’s downtown presence.
“It is very fitting that it bear the name of Dr. Brown, who was so instrumental in the development of CSU’s RiverPark campus and in the revitalization of downtown Columbus,” Markwood said in a news release. “We are delighted that Dr. Brown allowed us to add his name to this structure as a tribute to his legacy and the power of partnerships. The proposal had broad support among our supporters and with the Regents.”
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Brown said the honor is humbling.
“When Dr. Markwood approached me about this idea, I accepted on the condition that we create a tangible reminder on the site that the RiverPark campus -- like so many other developments in Columbus -- is the result of partnerships and the collective work of a large number of people, a team of which I was privileged to be a part,” Brown said in the release.
Under his leadership, CSU raised $100 million in private money by 2005 in a capital campaign that included development of the RiverPark Campus, which comprises the Schwob School of Music and the departments of art, theatre, communication and history. Now, Frank D. Brown Hall, also completely funded with private money, will be added to the mix.
“I am thrilled that Dr. Brown's name will be associated with our college,” Deirdre Greer, dean of CSU’s College of Education and Health Professions, said in the release. “Dr. Brown was the president when I started at CSU, so I know about the great work he did here. I think in many ways, the work that the College of Education and Health Professions is doing parallels the work that Dr. Brown did. For example, we are working with our many community partners to support the growth and development of health care and education in the region, which will attract and promote families and businesses to Columbus. Columbus State University has had a significant impact on this city, much of which can be attributed to the work done by Dr. Brown, and the College of Education and Health Professions plans to do our part to continue that work.”