Harris-Stowe State University announces the passing of Dr. Belma E. Givens


ST. LOUIS–Dr. Belma E. Givens, wife of the late Dr. Henry Givens, the longtime President of Harris Stowe State University, has died, the school announced early Friday night.

The news comes less than a month after Henry Givens’ passed away July 20 at the age of 90.

‘”Often referred to as his “backbone and quiet strength,” Dr. Belma Givens met Dr. Henry Givens while a student at Lincoln University,” the school said in a Facebook post. “They married shortly after graduation and would have celebrated their 66th wedding anniversary on September 11, 2021. Her selfless, untiring, and steadfast support of this historic institution as the first lady for 32 years will be forever remembered, along with her contributions and all that she has done in bringing about the great successes of Harris-Stowe State University in support of President Givens.”

The school said Dr. Belma Givens spent 34 years in the St. Louis Public School district, retiring as an administrator in 1999. She earned degrees from Lincoln University and Webster University, and was given an honorary doctorate from Harris Stowe in 2018.

Funeral arrangements were still pending. She is survived by two children and three grandchildren

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