Former SJGC dean pronounced dead

The former dean of Florida A&M’s School of Journalism & Graphic Communication died this evening, according to Bibb County’s chief coroner.

James Hawkins was pronounced dead at Coliseum Northside Hospital in Macon, Ga.

“He was found unconscious in his car at the Mellow Mushroom restaurant,” said Leon Jones, chief coroner of Bibb County in Macon. “EMS was called, they worked on the gentleman and he was pronounced dead at 5:04 p.m. at Northside Hospital’s emergency room.”

Ann Kimbrough, the current SJGC dean who has known Hawkins since 1979, said she was shocked and saddened at his passing.

“The entire School of Journalism & Graphic Communication family, I am sure, joins me in offering sincere condolences to his family,” Kimbrough said.

According to an announcement on behalf of Hawkins’ wife, Leon County Judge Judith Hawkins, released on Facebook via Kimberly Godwin, an SJGC alumna, Hawkins decided to have an early dinner with a former student in Macon on his way back from Atlanta. Hawkins texted the former student at 3:18 p.m. to say he had arrived but was found unresponsive in his car minutes later.

The statement also said Mrs. Hawkins is thankful her husband left life doing what he loved to do. She is asking for prayers, support and donations to the James E. Hawkins Endowed Scholarship fund at FAMU.

Northside Hospital did not release any information, and memorial arrangements have not been made at this time.