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UF alumni to get home on campus


© St. Petersburg Times,
published September 7, 2001

Today the University of Florida will hold a groundbreaking ceremony for its first real alumni facility. When completed sometime in 2002, it will be an imposing presence on the UF campus. The three-story, 61,000-square-foot building of burnished brick is designed in the tradition of the university's original architecture.

It will be named Emerson Alumni Hall, in honor of one of the school's biggest boosters and supporters, Bill Emerson, and his wife, Jane.

When Bill Emerson received the Distinguished Citizen Award from West Central Florida Council of the Boy Scouts a few years ago, he noted that he never was a Scout because he didn't have the money to buy a uniform. In one of his first jobs, he was a newsboy for the former newspaper the St. Petersburg Evening Independent.

Emerson went on to graduate from the University of Florida and go to work for Merrill Lynch. When he retired 40 years later, he was Merrill Lynch's senior vice president and national sales director. Emerson, who continues to serve as director of Merrill Lynch Trust Company, then put his energies to work for UF.

Emerson blitzed the state and the country, urging fellow grads to make generous donations to their alma mater, as he and and Jane have. He is past president of the University of Florida Foundation board of directors and was chairman of the Leadership Gifts Committee.

Today, UF president Charles E. Young is hosting a luncheon in Gainesville which will precede the groundbreaking ceremony for Emerson Alumni Hall.

Family and friends will be in Gainesville today for the ceremony. A group from the Tampa Bay area, headed by Bill Mills Jr. and former Merrill Lynch exec Hadley Heindel, have chartered a bus to the event.

Quick visit from Jane Seymour

Actor and artist Jane Seymour will be in the Tampa Bay area for a brief visit Sept. 21-23. Creativeworks Galleries Inc., owners of Galerie du Soleil, which opens Sept. 14 during the official opening of International Plaza, is bringing her to the area.

On Sept. 21, Seymour will be the guest of honor at a cocktail party at St. Petersburg's Renaissance Vinoy Resort which will benefit All Children's Hospital. For $75, in addition to meeting the Golden Globe- and Emmy-winning actor, guests at the cocktail party will receive a commemorative poster which Seymour will dedicate that evening. On Sept. 22-23, there will be "An Afternoon with Jane Seymour" at the gallery. On Sept. 23, fans can also see Seymour in the fountain area of Tampa's Old Hyde Park Village from noon to 4 p.m.

The actor, currently featured on the cover of Psychology Today magazine, lives in California with her family. She will be back in Florida in early October. On the 12th she will become the "godmother" of the new ship Golden Princess at the official naming ceremony in Fort Lauderdale.

Celebrating at Tiffany

Among the most impressive of the invitations for the parties to launch the new International Plaza shops is the one from Tiffany. In "Tiffany blue," tied with the ever-present, traditional white satin ribbon and printed in Tiffany & Co. lettering, the invitation is for a private party on Sept. 20.

Beth O. Canavan, executive vice president of Tiffany & Co., and Jonathan Brucker, director of the new store, are hosting the party. In honor of its coming to the Tampa Bay area, Tiffany is making contributions to All Children's Hospital, Lowry Park Zoo, Museum of Science and Industry and the Tampa Bay Performing Arts Center's group of sponsors known as the Producers.

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