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Southern Miss News Briefs PDF Print E-mail
Thursday, February 26, 2009
Contact David Tisdale - 601.266.4499   

This briefs package highlights timely news and events from The University of Southern Mississippi. For more information on any of the stories below or for assistance in arranging interviews, contact the Department of Marketing and Public Relations at 601.266.4491.

• Brazilian Pianist to Perform at Southern Miss
• Ledford new Science and Technology Associate Dean for Gulf Coast
• DuBard School Hosts Visitors from Wintzell’s

Brazilian Pianist to Perform at Southern Miss

HATTIESBURG, Miss. -- The School of Music at the University of Southern Mississippi presents guest artist Alessandra Feris in recital at 6 p.m. March 6 at Marsh Auditorium on the Hattiesburg campus. 

Dr. Feris, who earned her doctorate at Florida State University, has been a member of the piano faculty at the Mississippi Gulf Coast Community College in Gautier since 2008.  Her program at Southern Miss will include Debussy’s “Images” for Piano, Book II; Kodály’s Dances of Marosszék and Brahms’ Piano Sonata No. 3 in F minor, Opus 5.

A native of Brazil, Dr. Feris has achieved top prizes in competitions at national and international levels as well as prestigious awards and scholarships from several institutions. She has extensive performance experience and has appeared as a soloist and collaborative pianist in the United States and many countries in South America and Europe.

Admission is free and open to the public. For more information, contact the School of Music at 601.266.5543 or online, visit

Ledford Named Science and Technology Associate Dean at Gulf Coast

– Dr. Dale Ledford has been named associate dean of the College of Science and Technology for The University of Southern Mississippi Gulf Coast. Ledford has been with the university since 2003.

As associate dean for the college’s Gulf Coast operations, Ledford is responsible for oversight of its various departments and faculty. Working closely with the dean and department chairs of the college, Ledford ensures that the mission of the departments, the college and the university is upheld and maintained.

He also works with the dean and department chairs to ensure the university offers programs that meet the needs of students and are held to the highest standards.

“The College of Science and Technology is pleased to have Dr. Ledford serve in this role,” said Dr. Rex Gandy, dean of the College of Science and Technology. “He brings a wealth of experience and expertise to the position.”

Dr. Dale Ledford

DuBard School Hosts Visitors from Wintzell’s

HATTIESBURG, Miss. -- Students and staff at the University of Southern Mississippi DuBard School for Language Disorders recently welcomed two visitors who have helped the school continue to provide the gift of communication to young people.

Bob Omainsky, president of Wintzell’s Oyster House, from Mobile, Ala., and Bob Donlon, general counsel from Palm Beach, Fla., visited the DuBard School recently to see firsthand how the company’s financial support helps give children the gift of language.

“At Wintzell’s, we believe in being an active member of our community. We are excited to be a partner with the DuBard School and seeing the smiles on these students’ faces, makes us work harder every day” said Omainsky after touring the school. 

Since its founding in Mobile, Ala., more than 70 years ago, Wintzell’s Oyster House has been a generous supporter of the communities in which their restaurants are located. To continue that tradition of support in the Pine Belt area, Wintzell’s Oyster House in Hattiesburg has selected the Southern Miss DuBard School for Language Disorders as a local beneficiary of its philanthropic efforts.

One such effort is Wintzell’s donation of 10 percent of proceeds of sales from the first Tuesday of each month to the DuBard School, with the next effort scheduled for March 3.

“I am glad they share their money with our school. Being here helps me with listening and helps me speak,” said O.C. Lee IV, 13, of Hattiesburg who has attended the Dubard School since age six.

Lee, who was born with a severe hearing impairment and underwent cochlear implant surgery as a young child has learned the important tools for connecting with others – speaking, listening, reading and writing with the help of the staff at the school. 

Pursuing the school’s mission of giving the gift of oral and written language to young people like Lee requires many supportive partnerships, said Dr. Maureen Martin, DuBard School director. 

“We are delighted and honored that Wintzell’s Oyster House has chosen to support the Southern Miss DuBard School,” Martin said.  “Their compassion and generosity will certainly have a positive impact on many children and their families,”

For more information, online visit or

About The University of Southern Mississippi
The University of Southern Mississippi, founded in 1910, is a comprehensive doctoral and research-extensive university fulfilling its mission of being a leading university in engaging and empowering individuals to transform lives and communities.  In a tradition of leadership for student development, Southern Miss is educating a 21st century work force providing intellectual capital, cultural enrichment and innovation to Mississippi and the world.  Southern Miss is located in Hattiesburg, Miss., with an additional campus and teaching and research sites on the Mississippi Gulf Coast; further information is found at

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