Indiana State University Newsroom

Commencement speaker is alumnus, newspaper publisher
Student speaker, medal recipients to be honored

December 8, 2008

TERRE HAUTE -- The student commencement speaker, Hines and President's medal recipients will be honored as part of winter commencement ceremonies beginning at 2 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 13 in Indiana State University's Hulman Center.

Indiana State alumna, newspaper publisher and former state representative Carolene Mays will address the graduates.

Approximately 623 undergraduate degree candidates and 312 advanced degree candidates are eligible to participate.

Carolene Mays
Commencement Speaker

Mays is publisher and president of the nation's fourth oldest African-American newspaper, the "Indianapolis Recorder," and the recently acquired "Indiana Minority Business Magazine."

Her commitment to service and community advocacy led her to run for the State House in 2002. She served three terms as state representative in District 94 on the northwest side of Indianapolis. In the Legislature she served on the Ways and Means Committee, Public Health Committee and as vice-chairman of the Small Business and Economic Development Committee. Nationally, she served on committees with the National Black Caucus of State Legislators, National Conference of State Legislators, and Women in Government.

Mays' service as state representative was the direct result of her desire to be active in her community. She has served on numerous boards and committees and is founder and director of the Community Resource and Health Fair held at Lafayette Square Mall. Mays is co-founder of the nationwide African American News and Information Consortium.

Since 1998, Mays has been a catalyst for change, redesign and growth of the Recorder. A refocused charge to highlight motivational and educational news has appealed to old and new readers of the paper, increasing its readership dramatically to nearly 100,000. The Recorder is now ranked among the top Black newspapers nationwide.

She also co-hosts a weekly television news segment, "Community Link", on central Indiana's CBS affiliate, WISH-TV Channel 8 which highlights news from the Indianapolis Recorder newspaper; and co-host of the "Recorder On Air Report Television Show" (ROAR) on central Indiana cable networks and WDNI-TV Channel 65.

Mays, who earned a bachelor of science degree in management from Indiana State in 1985, was featured by Indianapolis Monthly Magazine in August 2007 as one of "Indy's Most Powerful". In November 2007, she was honored by the Indianapolis Business Journal as one of "Indiana's Most Influential Women". She has also been honored in the Ben Davis High School Hall of Fame and as an ISU Distinguished Alumna. She was also listed by Roll Call, a Washington D.C. publication as a Rising Star in Indiana Politics.

Jeff Brown
Student Speaker

A native of Indianapolis, Brown has been active on campus as well as the Terre Haute and Indianapolis communities. Active in Indiana State's Student Government Association, he has served a senator, Chief of Staff and Vice President. He was also active in Indiana State's chapter of the NAACP, serving as its president in 2005 and the Black Student Union. He served as president of the Student African American Brotherhood chapter at Indiana State.

Brown, who will graduate with a bachelor's degree in English, was a member of the planning committee for the Black Leadership Conference, a resident assistant mentoring 45 freshmen students, and active with the African American Cultural Center, Ebony Majestic Choir and the National Society of Collegiate Scholars.

Since 2007 he has served as associate minister of the Faith Tabernacle Praise and Word Center in Indianapolis. He has volunteered at the Ryves Hall Youth Center, Lighthouse Mission, Race for the Cure, March of Dimes and Indiana Black Expo.

Matt Lindley
President's Medal for Leadership, Scholarship and Service

Lindley, a music education major from Paris, Ill., is heavily involved with Indiana State's band program.

He has served as a student instructor for the Marching Sycamores, a member of Sycamore Athletic Band Council, drum major for the Marching Sycamores for three years and section leader and student conductor with the Basketball Band.

He is a member of Phi Mu Alpha Sinfonia and received the Phi Mu Alpha Man of Music Award and the Gary Gartin Memorial Award, given to the outstanding member of marching band.

He has volunteered multiple times with Special Olympics, served as a volunteer coach with the Paris Youth Basketball League and volunteered with Relay for Life. Lindley has played with the Paris Community Band and taught music to students in local schools.

Rachel Haun, Rockville
Kristin Chaney, Linton
Hines Memorial Medalists

The student or students graduating with the highest honors classification cumulative grade point average on at least 124 semester hours with grades earned in all courses taken at ISU will receive the Hines Memorial Medal. Two students will receive the medal during December commencement.

A communications major with an emphasis in public relations, Rachel Haun has made the Dean's List throughout her college career. Last summer as a Focus Indiana scholarship recipient, she worked as a community affairs intern at WTHR in Indianapolis. Haun, who resides in Rockville, plans on pursuing a career as a public relations practitioner in the Indianapolis area.

A native of Linton, Kristin Chaney is an elementary education major. She has served as a mentor for one year with College Mentors for Kids and was a member of the Society of Collegiate Scholars, Golden Key International Honor Society and Alpha Lambda Delta. A high honors collegiate scholar, she has been a recipient of the Sycamore Scholars, James Brown and Caleb Mills scholarships. Chaney plans on pursuing a career as an elementary school teacher in the Wabash Valley.

Media contact and writer: Paula Meyer, ISU Communications & Marketing, (812) 237-3783 or