Newhouse School Dean Lorraine Branham Remembered as an Educator and Pioneer

Apr 3, 2019

A vigil honoring the life of Dean Lorraine Branham was held in Syracuse University's Hendricks Chapel on Wednesday afternoon.
Credit WAER News

S.I. Newhouse School of Public Communications Dean Lorraine Branham is being remembered for her accomplishments improving the college, as well as her role as a journalism pioneer. 


The school's dean for the past 10 years died Tuesday after a bout with cancer.  Broadcast journalism professor Barbara Fought praised Branham as both a journalist and leader.

"I certainly admire her for her integrity. And she really cared passionately about journalism and about educating students at Newhouse. Personally, she was warm. She was funny and she pushed us all, which is what a leader should do."

Assistant Student Affairs dean Karen McGee said Branham always had her eyes on the future for the school, but didn’t ignore what was best for students on a personal level.

"I can't tell you how many times I said 'I know there's a student struggling financially or they just need some books.' And she would just say, 'send them my way.' She always took care of them."

McGee also emphasized the struggles Branham went through as a young, black female journalist.  Associate Dean Hub Brown said that didn’t hold her back; it propelled her forward. 

Branham is being remembered for her accomplishments improving the Newhouse School, as well as her role as a journalism pioneer.
Credit WAER News

"She said 'all my mentors were white men because that's who was there.' In saying that what she was saying was that we can all be a part of moving the country forward and having its media be much more responsible and responsive."

Branham is remembered for making important upgrades to Newhouse to move its education into the digital age, while striving to make it the preeminent communications school in the country.  Faculty and staff add they feel as though they lost both leader and a friend.