UALR will honor Dr. B. Alan and Jean Sugg at the sixth annual Finale gala at 6:30 p.m. on Saturday, April 23, in the Jack Stephens Center benefiting the university’s arts programs.
Finale celebrates the arts in Central Arkansas and is the premier fundraising event for UALR’s
arts programs. The dinner gala features performances and artwork by students. This year’s
performance, “Two Tickets to Broadway,” will be a dance revue of popular musicals. Proceeds
from the event benefit UALR’s art, music, and theatre arts and dance students and programs.
Craig O’Neill of Today’s THV will serve as master of ceremonies. This is his fourth year to host
“We are pleased to honor Dr. and Mrs. Sugg as well as the legacy they will leave for the
university system,” said Deborah Baldwin, dean of the UALR College of Arts, Humanities,
and Social Sciences. “They have been supporters of our arts programs over the years and have
attended many of our concerts, performances, and gallery exhibitions.”
The Suggs met while they were junior high students in what is now the Helena-West Helena
school system, where she was a tap and ballet dancer, and he played trombone for the concert band.
While attending the UA, Mrs. Sugg became a Razorback majorette and Dr. Sugg joined the pole
vault team. They married after receiving their bachelors’ degrees.
After receiving his bachelor’s degree from the UA, Sugg was commissioned in the U.S. Army and was stationed in Germany. Their oldest daughter Katie was born in Heidleberg, Germany,
and their second daughter, Jenifer was born in Fort Hood, Texas. The Suggs are the grandparents to two grandsons, Jackson and Mitchell White, who are Jenifer’s children.
Later, Sugg returned to UA for his master’s degree in education and went on to the University of Oklahoma for his Ph.D. in higher education administration.
Prior to becoming UA System president, Sugg he worked in higher education in Texas for 22 years, including 13 years as president of Texas A&M University at Corpus Christi. Currently, he is the chairperson of the Arkansas Biosciences Institute.
Jean Sugg received her bachelor’s degree in business from UA. She served six years on the
Arkansas Symphony Orchestra Board and was president of the Junior League Sustainers Board.
Dr. and Mrs. Sugg have hosted dozens of programs, events, and fundraisers for universities
across the UA System, for which Mrs. Sugg has often provided the fare from her own kitchen.
Presenting sponsor of the 2011 event is Glazer’s Distributors of Arkansas. Premier sponsors
include Chip and Cindy Murphy and Simmons First National Bank, and sustaining sponsors are
Arkansas Blue Cross Blue Shield and Arkansas Children’s Hospital.
Arts organizations from around the region lend their support to Finale each year. This year’s
participating arts partners are Accademia dell’Arte, Arkansas Arts Center, Arkansas Festival
Ballet, Arkansas Repertory Theatre, and the Arkansas Symphony Orchestra.
Reservations to Finale are $150 each. Call 501-569-3296 for more information.