October 27, 2004

Contact: Todd Cohen, University Relations, (785) 864-8858.

Statement by Chancellor Hemenway on death of First Lady Meredith Docking

LAWRENCE -- University of Kansas Chancellor Robert Hemenway issued the following statement today in response to the death of Meredith Docking, a KU graduate and benefactor and wife of former Kansas Governor Robert Docking:

"Meredith Docking was a charming, delightful person, and a generous supporter of her alma mater. On behalf of the whole university community - students, faculty, alumni and friends of KU -- I extend my deepest sympathy and condolences to the Docking family. Meredith Docking's gifts to the university - as a volunteer, a donor and an inspiration -- were felt throughout the campus. The faculty award she created is one of many examples of a legacy of loyalty that will continue to make a deep and lasting impact on the university she loved."

Meredith Docking graduated from KU with a business degree in 1947. She was a member of Chi Omega Sorority at KU, where she met her future husband, Robert Docking, a 1948 KU graduate. He was elected to the first of four consecutive two-year terms as Kansas governor in 1966. As first lady, Meredith Docking held honorary positions on many boards and traveled throughout the state to meet with citizens and support her husband's campaigns.

A longtime supporter of KU, Meredith Docking was a member of the KU Alumni Association and the Outlook Society, which honors donors of $500,000 or more through the Chancellors Club, KU Endowment's major-donor organization. She donated $1 million to KU in 1999 to create the Docking Faculty Scholars Award to honor and keep exceptional teachers and scholars at KU. Recipients, always assistant or associate-level faculty members, receive a salary stipend for three-year fellowships.

Docking also was a reader for KU's Kansas Audio-Reader Network for two years and donated three "Meredith Docking Rose" bushes to the Audio-Reader Garden, located next to the Baehr Audio-Reader Center at KU.

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