AU’s Williams steps down as Plainsman advisor, endows scholarship

AUBURN – Auburn University Journalism Professor Ed Williams, serving his final semester as faculty adviser to The Auburn Plainsman student newspaper, has established The Ed Williams Endowed Scholarship in Journalism to benefit students and also to mark his 25 years of service to journalism at AU and his 23 years as faculty adviser to the Plainsman.

“My students tell me that I’ve impacted their lives, but I wanted to leave another kind of legacy, something that will be here long after I am gone,” said Williams. “I felt that funding an endowed scholarship is something that will be a part of Auburn forever and something that demonstrates the commitment that I’ve had to my students and to The Auburn Plainsman for the past 25 years.”

The endowment will provide scholarships for students in the journalism program in the Department of Communication and Journalism, in the College of Liberal Arts, who have demonstrated a commitment to journalism through working at The Plainsman.

Williams joined the AU faculty in 1983 after an extensive career writing for several newspapers in Alabama, including The Montgomery Advertiser, The South Alabamian, The Brewton Standard and The Andalusia Star-News.

During Willliams’s 23 years as adviser, The Plainsman was awarded 13 of its 23 Pacemaker Awards, the highest honor awarded in college journalism. Only one other collegiate newspaper, The Daily Texan at the University of Texas, has received more Pacemakers than The Plainsman.

“I’ve had the perfect job,” said Williams. “But I felt it was time for new leadership as the adviser, and I want to concentrate on classroom teaching and advising students in our internship program. It’s been a fun ride – I wouldn’t take anything for my association with student journalists at The Plainsman.”

Williams will continue to teach and to serve as journalism internship director.

Contact: Victoria Santos, (334) 844-7186(, or
Mike Clardy, (334) 844-9999 (