Grambling State University in Louisiana has announced that it is naming its new 157-acre west campus in honor of Ralph Waldo Emerson Jones. Jones was inaugurated as Grambling’s second president in 1936 after serving for 10 years as dean, professor of mathematics, director of the band, and coach of the baseball team. He served as Grambling’s president for 41 years, retiring in 1977.
Jones was the grandson of slaves. His father was the first dean of Southern University, the historically Black educational institution in Baton Rouge. Jones was a graduate of Southern University and held a master’s degree from Columbia University.
Jones died in 1982 at the age of 76.