Robert Skinner will be remembered not only for making the library a leading undergraduate resource, but also for leadership during its construction and later during its preservation following Katrina. He developed the archives and special collections reflecting the cultures of the University while at the same time expanding electronic sources and capabilities. Furthermore, his efforts to reach the University community through readings, lectures, exhibitions, and related events have contributed to making the library a key resource for the University community and visiting scholars.
Making the library a partner in publishing Xavier Review and books by Xavier Review Press has brought positive attention to the University’s contributions in the arts and humanities. His work as Managing Editor of the journal and press for so many years has been exemplary. Furthermore, his own writing has distinguished his years at the University in the tradition of “practicing what one preaches.” His books on the African American writer Chester Himes, those on hard-boiled fiction, and his own novels exploring the color line in New Orleans, added to other accomplishments, make his contribution to the University singular and memorable. It has been a privilege to work with Bob Skinner over many years at Xavier, and I wish him well as he prepares for retirement.
Thomas Bonner, Jr.