Dr. Charles Payne Sadly Passed Away at 80
Ball State’s first Black faculty member to earn tenure and professor rank who kicked off the University’s first multicultural education program, Dr. Charles Payne passed away at the age of 80, on June 23, 2022.
May he rest in peace and we send our sympathies to his loved ones.
Spending over four decades at Ball State, Charles Payne began in 1972 as an assistant professor of Secondary Education and director of the Preparation of Teachers for Multi-Cultured Schools Program.
He quit in 2013 while having achieved the titles of Assistant Provost for Diversity, Emeritus; Director of the Office of Institutional Diversity, Emeritus; and Professor of Secondary Education, Emeritus.
Payne was additionally heavily interested in different meaningful endeavors and organizations around Muncie and East Central Indiana. He was ex-president of the local Kiwanis chapter, Lt. Governor of the Wapahani Division, and was a great and beloved member of the Bethel AME Church in Muncie, working as its secretary for about 20 years.
Other boards, memberships, and organizations he worked for such as Motivate Our Minds, Phi Beta Sigma Fraternity, Inc., Muncie Action Plan, and the MLK Dream Team.
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Dr. Payne was 4 years old when he acquired polio and was informed he’d never walk again. Kids bullied the future scholar: “Hey professor,” they’d say, never knowing Dr. Payne would one day respond to that title with pride, or learn to walk, which he did.
What Caused Dr. Charles Payne Passed Away?
At this time there is no official report about how Charles Payne passed away, although some unconfirmed sources claim he lost his life because of natural causes.
Our team does not confirm any rumors about the news, but you can be sure that we are trying our best to find related information about the tragedy and provide the latest updates as soon as possible; but, do not forget that family privacy should be respected.
Graduating from Rust College in Holly Springs, Miss., with a bachelor’s degree in 1962, Charles gained a master’s degree in chemistry from Tuskegee Institute three years later, and a doctorate in Science Education from the University of Virginia in 1972.
He taught chemistry for many years in the segregated public school system in Mississippi and additionally trained at Mississippi Valley State in Itta Bena, Miss., before achieving his doctorate and relocating to Muncie and Ball State.
Dr. Payne’s gift is felt in many ways at Ball State, though mostly at the University’s Multicultural Center, which opened its new 9,500-square-foot location in the core of campus last year.
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Among the multiple annual Achievement Awards presented by the Multicultural Center is the Dr. Charles Payne Olive Branch Award, which is given to a student who encourages variety and cross-cultural sensitivity among all and aims to transcend all cultural and racial boundaries, and; who best establishes patience and approval of diversity as expressed by the mission of the Multicultural Center to back and advance the University’s commitment to cultural variety.
Payne leaves behind his wife of five decades, Dr. June Payne, their son, Dr. Gregory Payne, a son-in-law, Cavin Abram, three granddaughters, and two great-grandchildren. He was preceded in passing by his daughter, Lauren Payne.