Letter to the editor: FAU turning 50




The UP story headlined “Cakes and lies” is based on an error of fact. When I was interviewed by Gideon Grudo, I told him that although FAU was established in 1961 via a funding bill that passed the Florida Legislature, that year was not inscribed on the University seal until the presidency of Dr. Anthony Catanese.

Further investigation on my part revealed that the University’s first graphic image, a logo showing a horizontal view of the state of Florida, included the year 1961. That meant that the University’s original administrators recognized 1961 as the founding year. (Gallery Here) I advised Mr. Grudo of this by voicemail and email, but the inaccuracy still appeared in his story.


The story also presented the fundraising aspect of the 50th anniversary gala in a negative light.

This is unfortunate, as the event is being hosted to raise money for student scholarships, which, in my opinion, is the highest and best purpose such an event could serve.


Lynn K. Laurenti ‘66

Co-Chair, FAU 50th Anniversary Committee


Indeed, in the story “Cake and lies,” I wrote, “In the 1990s, under FAU President Anthony Catanese, the year 1961 was added to FAU’s seal.”

That is not true, as Ms. Laurenti has shown me — the year 1961 has always been on FAU’s seal.

After we spoke about this correction, Laurenti sent me another e-mail. Part of it read: “To the best of my knowledge, the only two ‘birthdays’ that have been celebrated in the history of the University were in 2004 – to mark 40 years from the day the doors opened in [1964] – and now in 2011 to mark 50 years from passage of the initial funding bill that established FAU.”

Having made mention of the correction, I don’t see the subject of the story changing. And I don’t see how 1961 was “acknowledged as our founding year from the very beginning.

“If FAU has celebrated only two anniversaries, seven years apart, the point remains. FAU has yet to decide how old it is. I guess the best I can do is wait until 2014 and see what is celebrated — if anything at all.

I would like to thank Ms. Laurenti for her letter and input. If you have any thoughts or comments about the UP, don’t hesitate to e-mail us at [email protected]

Gideon Grudo