"When we first open a space on campus, dedications are held and memorials are made. After that, it is the College's obligation to ensure that facilities are well-maintained as an acknowledgement of the generosity of our supporters." - Lynn Weatherman, former First Lady of Lyon College
That trust, to honor the memory of those who have served the College by maintaining and caring for the structures that bear their names, is what inspired Lynn Weatherman to found the First Ladies' Auxiliary. The group is dedicated to maintaining Lyon's beauty and taking on those projects that go unaddressed because of the more urgent needs of maintaining the College's facilities and grounds.
With the help of former Lyon (then Arkansas College) first ladies, Carolyn Holloway and Sidney West, Weatherman announced the launching of the First Ladies' Auxiliary in August 2011. Women who have an association with the Lyon College Board of Trustees, either by serving as a trustee or being the spouse of a trustee, are invited to join the auxiliary. However, Weatherman said men wishing to make a contribution in memory of a woman associated with the board have also been given membership. Members pledge a gift of $1,000 each, to be renewed annually, to fund projects chosen by the auxiliary.
The group's first project was to refurbish the furnishings in the Bevens Music Room in Brown Chapel. The room had been remodeled in 1989 thanks to the generosity of long-time friend of the College, Marion Bradley Lyon, but no repairs or updates had been done since that time. The group also funded updates to the restrooms in the back hallway of Brown Chapel.
In 2012-13, the auxiliary made significant updates in the small chapel of the Brown Chapel and Fine Arts Building, with new paint and flooring. New windows of frosted glass were installed, seats were reupholstered, and a carpet runner was added.
In 2013-14, the group refurbished the Alphin Board Room and had the chairs reupholstered. The next year, the Flanders Student Reading Room in the Lyon Building was updated, and seating there and in the ground floor lobby was reupholstered.
In 2015-16, the auxiliary assisted in the ongoing updating of the Brown Chapel and Fine Arts Building by contributing to the construction and furnishing of a new and much-needed Green Room at the rear of the building behind the stage area.
Lyon is more than just a college. It's a community distinguished by its academic curriculum, unique honor and social systems, and award-winning professors.