Indiana University will give it highest alumni award to three people in November, including one who was famous before he became a Hoosier.
Rock and Roll Hall of Fame member Booker T. Jones will be among those receiving IU’s Distinguished Alumni Service Award at a ceremony in Bloomington November 15th. Jones received his Bachelor‘s degree in music education from IU in 1967, five years after his group Booker T. and the MG’s had their biggest hit song, the instrumental “Green Onions.”
The MG’s were the house band for the legendary soul label Stax Records in Jones‘s hometown of Memphis, Tennessee and played on the hit songs for many artists. Jones received an honorary doctorate from IU in 2012.
Also honored this year is former U.S. Education Secretary Rod Paige. Paige received his Masters degree in physical education from IU in 1962 and his doctorate in P.E. in 1970. He was the school superintendent for Houston Public Schools when he became the first African-American Education Secretary.
Paige served the first term of George W. Bush‘s presidency from 2001 until 2005.
The third honoree is Shirley Schlanger Abrahamson, who in 1976 became the first woman to be named to Wisconsin’s high court. Abrahamson has been Chief Justice since 1996 and is the longest-serving justice in the court‘s history.
Abrahamson graduated first in her class from the IU School of Law in 1956.