U of L awards Presidential Medal to Larry Clark

We may have to reconsider our opinion of Larry Clark, the State Representative who is often seen wearing a baseball cap bearing the University of Kentucky logo at games in Lexington.

Yes, that Larry Clark, the speaker pro tem who allowed the legislation expanding Papa John’s Cardinal Stadium to sit a year, raising the costs and limiting the size of the football expansion.

The same individual who threatened funding for construction of the KFC Yum! Center by attempting to block the riverfront site in favor of one owned by the Louisville Water Company.

President James Ramsey recently awarded a University of Louisville Presidential Medal to Clark for his role in crafting the 1997 higher education reforms in Frankfort. The legislation mandated that U of L become a preeminent metropolitan research university by 2020.

“We are all indebted to Larry for his courage, leadership and vision,” said Ramsey. “He has been an unwavering advocate for funding higher education and for UofL in particular.”

Since the reforms were enacted, U of L has made the largest gains of any university in National Institutes of Health research ranking, with its NIH funding increasing 277 percent and its rank increasing 30 places. In a recent ranking among public U.S. universities, the melanoma clinic ranked third, the neurology research program fourth, and the spinal cord research program 10th in NIH funding.

Yes, that Larry Clark.

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Charlie Springer

Charlie Springer is a former Louisville editor and sportswriter, a public affairs consultant, a UofL grad and longtime fan.