Campus News

Dillard University Congratulates Michael Smith!

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Lauren R.D. Fox                                                                                                                                                        August 7, 2019
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NEW ORLEANS—Dillard University congratulates Michael Smith, General Manager of the Hyatt Regency on receiving the Loving Cup Award. Granted by historical news outlet, The Times-Picayune, the Loving Cup was conceptualized in 1901 to award people who unselfishly give services or monetary funds to the Crescent City community without expecting public recognition. Since its inception, the following have been recipients of the Loving Cup: Leah Chase, Roger Ogden of the Ogden Museum, Bill Goldring to name a few. “I'm not the guy who writes the check; I'm the guy who does the work," Smith told The Times-Picayune about his humanitarianism. 

Since 2004, Smith has been the Hyatt’s general manager and used the hotel to help the city of New Orleans recover from Hurricane Katrina; his staff provided meals and shelter to guests and citizens who were displaced. Since the storm, Smith has helped community organizations celebrate their missions; he and his staff have completed over 1,000 hours of community service and donated up to $1.6 million to local causes and institutions. Under Smith’s management and guise, the Hyatt Regency sponsored Dillard’s 150th Founding Anniversary Gala that took place on May 11, 2019. Thanks to the Hyatt’s generosity, over 1,000 guests attended the gala, helping the University receive a record-breaking $1.1 million in donations. The gala's net proceeds went to the University's SAFE Fund that helps students pay off outstanding balances. Since 2014, the SAFE Fund has helped 765 students  remain enrolled at Dillard. “I can't think of a better person to receive the Loving Cup. Smith's commitment to New Orleans was evident long before Hurricane Katrina, but since then, he is certainly at the top of the list of people who have been catalysts for the city's resurgence, “ Marc Barnes, Dillard’s Vice President of Institutional Advancement said in a statement. “I am grateful for his service and proud that Dillard bestowed him with an honorary degree.”  

Smith’s philanthropic impact has allowed another graduating class of Bleu Devils to advance their careers in New Orleans and beyond. 

Dillard University, located in New Orleans at 2601 Gentilly Blvd., is a private four-year liberal arts historically black institution with a history dating back to 1869. For more information, please visit Also, follow us on Twitter, Facebook @DU1869 and Instagram: Dillard University.

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2601 Gentilly Boulevard
New Orleans, Louisiana 70122

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