Endowed Chairs and Professorships

Ann & Batey Gresham Endowed Professorship


In 1999 Nashville architect Batey Gresham (BArch ’57) and his wife Ann established the first endowed professorship in Auburn University’s School of Architecture, Planning and Landscape Architecture (APLA). A significant gift and a permanent endowment, it was the first professorship in the architecture program’s then 90-year history. The Greshams both graduated from Auburn University, and Batey Gresham was a founding partner in accomplished international design firm Gresham, Smith and Partners, founded in Nashville, Tennessee. In 2005, Batey was recognized by the Auburn Alumni Association with the Lifetime Achievement Award (AAA). This award, the association’s highest honor, was established in 2001 to recognize outstanding professional achievement, personal integrity and service to the university.

Batey and Ann established the Gresham Professorship with a vision of providing support to outstanding faculty who demonstrate a strong commitment to quality instruction, research and service, and who thus “strengthen and enhance the architecture program.” Awardees are selected every three years by the Dean of the College of Architecture, Design and Construction (CADC) in consultation with senior architecture faculty.  In 1999 the three original Gresham professorships, which were for “Sustained Excellence,” “Professional Promise,” and “Significant Achievement,” were awarded to professors Gaines Blackwell, David Hinson and Samuel Mockbee, respectively. The generous support of the Greshams set a precedent for the vital role that endowed professorships have come to play in the CADC.