Livingstone College

Raymond Robinson, beloved colleague passes away

By Laurie D. Willis
Livingstone College News Service

Raymond Robinson had worked in the financial aid department at Livingstone College since 2006 until his sudden death on Feb. 1.

And now Livingstone students, faculty and staff are mourning the loss of a man who was known for his bright smile, calm demeanor and willingness to go that extra mile to help someone.

“Raymond was easy going and always had the best interests of the students at heart,” said Financial Aid Director Stephanie McNeil. “I’ve known Raymond for about 10 years, and a lot of the students, both male and female, really liked his personality.”

Robinson was the College’s Pell Grants administrator but had also previously served as a financial aid counselor and as financial aid director, McNeil said.

She said although Robinson earned his bachelor’s degree in business administration from North Carolina Central University, he really liked Livingstone College and was loyal to it.

“He was not a Livingstone alumnus, but he treated Livingstone as if he was,” she said. “He was very, very dedicated to Coach James Stinson and the basketball team and followed them avidly, and he also attended as many football games here as possible.”

Stinson has known Robinson since they both worked at Barber-Scotia College and said he nurtured students in all aspects of life.

“Mr. Robinson tried to provide students with information about how not to go into debt after they graduated,” Stinson said. “He made sure students were knowledgeable about the entire financial aid process. They loved Mr. Robinson because they knew he tried to ensure they had what they needed – and not just with respect to financial aid. He was like a father figure to many of the students, a mentor to many of them at Barber Scotia, and that definitely carried over to his work here at Livingstone College. He will certainly be missed.”

Tangar Young, Assistant Director of Financial Aid at Livingstone, said Robinson wasn’t just a co-worker to her.

Over the 23 years that we’ve worked together he became much more than a colleague to me,” Young said. “He became a friend and even a mentor. His presence will be greatly missed.”

Senior business administration major Dorian Edwards said Robinson epitomized service.

“To me it seemed as though he took an oath of service to students,” said Edwards of Kinston. “There was never a time when I went to his office and received inadequate help. He was always willing to help students with their financial aid needs, and he also talked to us about life and was concerned about our well-being. I will always be grateful to Mr. Robinson.”

Robinson’s funeral was held on Feb. 6 at 2 p.m. at First Congregational United Church of Christ in Concord, during which time a resolution about him was read by Livingstone College President Dr. Jimmy R. Jenkins, Sr.

“Mr. Robinson was an asset to Livingstone College,” Dr. Jenkins said after the service. “He worked hard in the financial aid office to ensure students were able to remain in school and obtain degrees. Working in financial aid at any institution of higher learning can be quite challenging, but Mr. Robinson handled his job in exemplary fashion. Livingstone College has lost a very valuable employee and also a devoted friend. Mr. Robinson will long be remembered and will certainly be missed.”

Affectionately known as “Robbye” to his family, Robinson leaves to cherish his memory his wife Teresa of the home, his daughter, Racquel D. Robinson, his son, Raymond “Ray” M. Robinson III, and his granddaughter, Kayleigh, all of Durham, and many other relatives and friends.

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