FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Alumna Allegra Brigham to speak at MUW Mag Chain ceremony
April 27, 2012
Contact: Anika Mitchell Perkins
COLUMBUS, Miss. – Mississippi University for Women alumna Allegra Brigham will address graduates at one of the university’s most treasured traditions, Mag Chain, on Saturday, May 5. The event will begin at 8 a.m. on Shattuck Lawn.
Brigham currently serves as interim vice president for university relations and advancement, and served as MUW’s interim president for 18 months.
She became CEO of 4-County Electric Power Association, an electric cooperative now serving some 46,000 members in eight counties in northeast Mississippi, in March 2003. She was the first female in Mississippi co-op history to hold the position. She retired from the cooperative with more than 22 years of service to become MUW’s interim president.
Brigham received her bachelor’s and master’s degrees from MUW. She served as a high school teacher and as a reporter, lifestyles editor and managing editor at The Commercial Dispatch. In addition, she is a former MUW director of public relations and taught in the Department of Communications at the university.
She currently serves on the Board of Directors of the Mississippi Economic Council and the Columbus-Lowndes Development Link. Brigham is a member of the board of directors for the Mississippi Children’s Museum, the Girl Scouts Heart of the South, and the Memphis Branch Board of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis.
Brigham and her husband, Bill, are the parents of two daughters and have five grandchildren. They attend First Baptist Church where she teaches a Sunday school class.
Mag Chain has taken place in some form since 1890. During this event, the magnolia chain is carried by seniors singing the “Magnolia Chain Song” from the front of Columbus Hall to Shattuck Lawn where the ceremony is held.
The procession is led by the senior class president who carries a bouquet of daisies in honor of the graduates who began the ceremony years ago. Daisies are carried because the magnolia chain was originally made of daisies and other flowers.
At the conclusion of the ceremony, the seniors form a circle around the magnolia chain, lock arms and sing the “Friendship Circle” song. After the song is completed, the seniors make a mad dash for a magnolia blossom.
Tradition holds that graduates who are able to walk away with a magnolia blossom will find good fortune and romance.