I have served one term as Governor, one term as Chairman and two three-year terms as the Secretary of the Southeastern Section. One of the things I noticed about our Section was the support we received from our senior members. I have in mind such people as Professor Trevor Evans of Emory University and Professor Wyman Williams of South Carolina. They were always present and always willing to help. Another thing was what I had to do, as Secretary, with reference to the programs. Many times the deadline would approach and I would not have received enough titles for contributed papers. I would have to make a few telephone calls and then they would come in. The third and possibly the best part of our programs were the invited addresses given by people in and out of our Section. They were always good and very strong.
Back in the seventies, our business meetings were always very dull. While I was Chairman of the Section, this was not true for my business meeting, When our Nomination Committee report was given, Professor Evans objected to the person who had been nominated as Section Lecturer. He said this person had not given our Section enough support. He made a substitute nomination and it passed.
At another business meeting, I made a substitute motion for the Meeting Sites Committee. This substitute motion passed. These things made at least two business meetings more interesting and our Section stronger.
We have had the Section meeting at Wake Forest several times. I remember when we used to have banquets. I decided that we would not have a banquet at one meeting and I so moved. I then had a telephone call from another member in another state. He wanted to know if I knew what I was doing. I told him that we would have the banquet and that all members of the Southeastern Section were invited. Everything went just fine.
I was chairman of the Nominating Committee one year. The Committee met and our report was ready. But, I never had a chance to give the report. Dr. Alfred Brauer from Chapel Hill and I were to drive to the meeting. On our way, we ran into a very large snowstorm and could not continue. I had to give the report by telephone.
Finally, I will always appreciate the support given to me by my colleagues at Wake Forest. They always attended our Section meetings in large numbers. On several occasions, all of the department members would attend. This made me feel very good. Professor Waddill is one of those people. He followed me as chairman of mathematics at Wake Forest and is now serving as Secretary of our Section. I was very pleased when he agreed to take this job.
My greatest honor in the Section was when I was chosen to receive the Meritorious Service Award from the Mathematical Association of America. This was the second time that this award was given, and I followed my good friend, John Neff.