Stewart honored at dedication of new business school facility

Stewart Center CBD dedication
Frank B. Stewart Jr. (BBA ’57), center, receives a commemorative plaque from Freeman School Dean Ira Solomon, left, and Tulane President Mike Fitts, right, at Friday’s dedication of the Stewart Center CBD, the business school’s new facility in downtown New Orleans. Photo by Tracie Morris Schaefer.

 
From his leadership as chair of the Business School Council to his extraordinary financial support, Frank B. Stewart Jr. (BBA ’57) has played a central role in the success of the A. B. Freeman School of Business for more than 40 years.

On Friday, the Tulane community came together to recognize Stewart’s lifelong commitment to the university by dedicating the business school’s new facility in downtown New Orleans in his honor. The Stewart Center CBD will house the Freeman School’s executive MBA program, non-degree executive and professional education offerings, international programs, and courses related to the school’s new entrepreneurial hospitality initiative.

“Tulane would not be what it is today without supporters like Frank and Paulette Stewart, and Tulane would not be the same university if it existed anywhere else but New Orleans,” said Tulane President Mike Fitts. “That is what is so wonderful about this new space. It deepens our connection to this magical, vibrant city.”

Stewart, chairman of Stewart Capital and former chairman of Stewart Enterprises Inc., is a longtime champion of executive and professional education. In 1993, he donated $1 million to the Freeman School to establish the Stewart Center for Executive Education, which oversees both degree and non-degree executive programs for the school.

“While executive education of this kind is now becoming an industry standard, Frank had the foresight at the time to see what an impact it could make,” said Ira Solomon, dean of the Freeman School. “I honestly believe that Frank knew the scope of what we were capable of before we ourselves even knew.”

In acknowledging the honor, Stewart thanked his wife, Paulette, and shared his heartfelt appreciation for Tulane’s role in his life and career.

“The real thanks today is not to me or my family or what we stand for,” Stewart said. “It’s for Tulane and what it stands for. I’ve always said education is the answer to every problem in life. If we don’t know how to educate human beings in all of the different aspects of existence, we’ll never achieve our full potential.”  

The Stewart Center CBD is located at 725 Howard Ave. in the New Orleans Culinary & Hospitality Institute. It features more than 21,000 square feet of purpose-built space, including four classrooms seating up to 240 students, two conference rooms, 18 breakout spaces, faculty and administrative offices, a student lounge area, reception areas, and access to indoor and outdoor event space. Classes at the new facility began in January.