In 2008, Sallie Shuping-Russell ’77 pledged a gift to the College of Arts and Sciences to establish a distinguished professorship in honor of her mother, Margaret R. Shuping ’44.  Shuping-Russell’s gift of $666,000, combined with a 2013 match from the North Carolina Distinguished Professors Endowment Trust Fund, has created a $1 million endowed professorship to bring outstanding faculty to UNC’s creative writing program.

Margaret R. Shuping (1923-2000) graduated from Carolina in 1944 with a bachelor’s degree in journalism. At the time, journalism was an emerging career choice, and Shuping was one of the pioneering women who pursued it.  After working briefly for the Greensboro Daily News, Margaret married Hampton Shuping (B.A. ’47) and became a full-time homemaker and civic volunteer.

“Mama loved Carolina,” said Shuping-Russell.  “She believed in taking the high road but also felt strongly about standing up for yourself and others, even if they were unpopular positions.  She was pretty spectacular.”

Shuping-Russell, one of Margaret and Hampton’s five children, earned a bachelor’s degree in English and political science from Carolina in 1977 and a master’s in business administration from Columbia University in 1983.  She is the managing director of BlackRock investment firm in New York, N.Y., and has served on the University’s Board of Trustees since 2007.  Shuping-Russell has also served on the Arts and Sciences Foundation Board of Directors.

Even though she has spent her career financing new technologies, Shuping-Russell believes it is crucial that our literary capacity remain apace of rapidly expanding scientific discovery.  The professorship that honors her mother recognizes the love of literature that Margaret shared with her children.

“Today we spend so much time surrounded by technology,” Shuping-Russell said. “The professorship reflects my firm belief that literature conveys the human condition and promotes humanness in a way that technology cannot.”

Portions taken from a new professorships article published in the fall 2013 issue of Carolina Arts and Sciences.

The Margaret R. Shuping Distinguished Fellow

2013 – Present:  Stephanie Griest