58 The History of Wake Forest
Robert A. Browne (Biology) received three grants totaling almost $100,000 from
the Fulbright Program, the Whitehall Foundation, and the National Geographic
Society to study the important role of brine shrimp evolution in aquaculture, or
water farming. He conducted his research at the University of Ghent, Belgium. His
departmental colleague, Raymond Kuhn, received a five-year, $883,138 MERIT award
from the National Institutes of Health to investigate Chagas disease, a tropical disease
prevalent in Central and South America caused by a single-celled parasite that can
devastate the heart muscle, the esophagus, and the large intestine.
Stan Thomas in the Mathematics and Computer Science Department was one of
ten educators in the United States chosen to receive a ten-week summer fellowship to
conduct research at the Kennedy Space Center in Merritt Island, Florida.
On July 31, 1986, Governor Jim Martin appointed former Law Professor Rhoda
Billings to replace retiring North Carolina Chief Justice Joseph Branch. Billings had
been appointed Associate Justice by Martin in the previous year. On November 4,
however, she lost the election to serve out the remaining four years of Branch’s eight-
year term and returned to teaching law at the University in January 1987.
Internally, Dean of the College Tom Mullen reported that 80 percent of the full-
time faculty was tenured, as compared with 60 to 65 percent at most universities. He
attributed the difference to “different tenure practices” at other institutions. Con-
cerned about workload, President Hearn wrote to Provost Wilson on February 3,
asking him to find a way to compensate department chairs.
Bynum Shaw (’51, English) became the first recipient of the Jon Reinhardt Award
for Distinguished Teaching. Professor of German and Russian William Hamilton led
thirty-five students and others interested in Russia and the Russian language on a
tour of the Soviet Union over spring break, the third since 1985.
On November 20, the Z. Smith Reynolds Library announced the acquisition of
its millionth volume. The Museum of Man moved to a space behind the German
House at the start of the spring semester and officially opened on May 18, 1987. Since
moving out of Reynolda Village, it had been without a home for eighteen months,
with its artifacts stored in the basement of Tribble Hall and other buildings.
Administration and Staff
Russell Brantley retired on January 1, 1987. He came to Wake Forest College from
the Durham Morning Herald in 1953 and had been the institution’s primary spokes-
person for thirty-four years. He was known for being frank and factual and not
shy in voicing his opinions, even if they were unpopular or controversial. For these
qualities and his keen ability to delineate and address the University’s major con-
cerns, Brantley was not only valued but beloved. Although stepping out of his daily
role in the News Bureau, he agreed to stay as a consultant to the President, a role he
first filled in the Scales administration. Sandra Connor, Assistant Director of Devel-
opment, became Director of Public Information and Assistant to the President on
The year also saw promotions. On January 1, University Counsel Leon H. Cor-
bett Jr. (’59, JD ’61) became Vice President for Legal Affairs while retaining the
title and functions of Secretary to the University. Robert T. Baker was promoted to