By Adam Lord with Melinda Anderson
The Rotary Club of Alexandria has bestowed its highest honor, the Service Above Self award, upon LSUA’s Dr. Haywood Joiner. Joiner, an Air Force veteran, a twenty-five-year employee at St. Frances Cabrini Hospital, and an educator and administrator at LSUA since 2004, has lived a life devoted to service.
According to Scott Laliberte, the Rotary’s Chair of Community Service, the Service Above Self award was first given by Rotary International in 1911 for outstanding service, leadership, and integrity. It represents the highest honor bestowed upon a Rotarian. This year’s award winner was chosen by a committee through a competitive nomination process and represents only the 22nd time it has been awarded by Alexandria’s club.
Joiner’s award was announced by Melinda Anderson, Rotarian and current Chief of Staff to LSUA’s Chancellor. In her remarks, Anderson began, “Individuals best exemplify Service Above Self in their community and in humanitarian service, in any form and at any level. This person must have made a significant positive difference in the community, above and beyond normal activities, with no thought of self-benefit.” She announced, “This year’s recipient’s contribution of personal time, energy, effort, and resources speak to his complete and total commitment to the future of our community. Dr. Haywood Joiner has gone above and beyond to make a significant positive difference in central Louisiana.”
In true selfless fashion, Joiner was stunned by the award. “Wow. I am speechless,” is all he could muster when he approached the podium. Joiner went on to express his gratitude to the members of the club. He noted being a Rotarian in the Rotary Club of Alexandria has been one of the best things in his life because of the many incredible servant-leaders he has met and worked alongside. He thanked his wife of fifty-five years, Mary, for supporting him in his work. Joiner concluded, “Service is what I do. It is what I have been called to do.”
Dr. Joiner is a veteran of the United States Air Force where he served four years as a Medical Laboratory Specialist with the Nellis AFB Hospital in Las Vegas, Nevada. Following an honorable discharge from the Air Force, he returned home to serve as a medical lab supervisor at St. Frances Cabrini Hospital. He was employed at St. Frances Cabrini Hospital for twenty-five years, serving in many positions across the organization.
In 1998, he accepted a position as Director of the Medical Laboratory Science program at Southern University, Shreveport, where he also served as Chairman of the Division of Allied Health. In 2004, Dr. Joiner joined LSUA and has served the LSUA campus and students tirelessly for the last eighteen years. Dr. Joiner currently serves as Dean of the College of Health and Human Services.
Dr. Joiner’s civic and professional accomplishments include: past Board Chair and Member Emeritus of Central Louisiana Area Health Education Committee, past Board President and current member of the Arna Bontemps African American Museum Board of Directors, member of Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity, Inc., past President of Cenla Kiwanis Club, past President of Rotary Club of Alexandria, past Education Division Chair of the Central Louisiana Chamber of Commerce, board member of Health Occupations Student Association of Louisiana, member of the Workforce Investment Board, President of the Central Louisiana Regional Port, past Chair and current member of the Board of Trustees of Rapides Regional Medical Center, former Commissioner and Chair of the Rapides Parish Housing Authority, and former Commissioner and Vice Chair of the Rapides Parish Civil Service Commission.
Photo credit – Nathan Parish | LSUA Division of Strategic Communications