Jim Barker named Christmas Grand Marshal

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The City of Greenville announced today that outgoing Clemson University President Jim Barker will serve as grand marshal for the Greenville Poinsettia Christmas Parade. Barker, who recently announced plans to retire from his position as president after nearly 14 years and return to the faculty of the School of Architecture, will be honored during this year’s parade as he leads over 90 floats and marching units on Main Street in downtown Greenville.
“We are thrilled to welcome President Jim Barker as the grand marshal for this year’s parade,” said Mayor Knox White. “With the exponential growth of Clemson University over the last decade, we have seen Barker’s vision of making Greenville Clemson’s ‘home city’ become a reality. We are honored to have the opportunity to recognize him for his visionary leadership alongside the thousands of people who will attend one of our signature events.”

After December graduation ceremonies at Clemson University, Barker will have awarded more than 59,000 diplomas (representing almost 44 percent of all living alumni), helped raise nearly $900 million in private gifts and led development of nearly 3 million square feet of new or renovated space. He has worked to strengthen ties to the Greenville community, which is home to more than 13,000 alumni, 2,500 current on-campus students and 500 University employees.

“Greenville is a remarkable place,” said Barker. “It truly is one of America’s most exciting and most livable small cities. Clemson is proud to have been a vital part of that evolution, through the work of Professor Barry Nocks and his planning students on the Reedy River Master Plan; through CU-ICAR and our work in transportation and engineering; through our downtown programs in business and entrepreneurship education; through our new health research partnership with GHS; and with the new Clemson Center for Visual Arts-Greenville in the Village of West Greenville.”

The Greenville Poinsettia Parade is set for December 7 at 6 p.m. The one-mile parade route will stretch from North Street to Augusta Street on Main Street and feature musical marching groups, elaborately decorated floats and, of course, Santa Claus. The parade is free to the public and spectators will find ample places to view the parade, with prime seating located from the Main Street Bridge south toward Falls Park.

The parade will be featured the following week on GTV (Charter channel 15 and U-verse channel 99). For more information, visit events.greenvillesc.gov.

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