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Contact: Christine Payton April 24, 2012
(337) 482-6397, payton@louisiana.edu
Joe Stewart, one of the most recognized television production designers, will receive an Honorary Doctorate of Fine Arts during the University of Louisiana at Lafayette’s Spring Commencement on Saturday, May 12.

Stewart will be honored during the General Assembly at 11 a.m. in the Cajundome.
Born and raised in Lafayette, Stewart attended Cathedral Carmel High School and began his college education at UL Lafayette, where he studied architecture, art history and fine art. While at then-USL he worked at the Natural History Museum and Planetarium and was editor of L’Acadien yearbook.

In 1974, he transferred to Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburgh and received the B.F.A. degree in drama (design) in 1977. After graduation, Stewart moved to New York City and began working as a production assistant. After several public television projects, he moved to Los Angeles where he began his television career at NBC as an assistant art director on Days of our Lives.

Today, Stewart, along with his partner John Shaffner, is among the most recognized production designers in television. His career has included sitcoms, award shows, special events, game shows, charity telethons, talk shows, music and variety series and specials, and live theatrical productions.

He has received four Primetime Emmy Awards, two Daytime Emmy Awards for The Ellen DeGeneres Show and one Los Angeles Area Emmy Award. The Joe Stewart/John Shaffner design for the 2006 Primetime Emmy Awards was recognized with the Art Director’s Guild Award. Collaborations by Stewart and Shaffner have been nominated a total of 32 times for Primetime and Daytime Emmys, and have received numerous Art Directors Guild and CableACE nominations.

Among Stewart’s award-winning shows are Two and a Half Men, The Big Bang Theory, Friends, The Drew Carey Show and Mike and Molly. Currently his work can be seen on The Doctors, The Rachel Ray Show, The Conan Show and recent productions of The Ringling Brothers Circus.

He has designed specials for numerous artists, from Perry Como and Andy Williams to Celine Dion and David Copperfield, and has also designed The American Music Awards, The ESPY Awards, The Jerry Lewis MDA Telethon (21 times), The Republican National Convention and The Miss USA and Miss Universe Pageants.

In 1998, Stewart was awarded the Carnegie Mellon Alumni Merit Award. He has served in various offices in the Academy of Television Arts & Sciences, most recently as chairman of the Television Hall of Fame. During 2011-2012, he was artist-in-residence with the UL Lafayette College of the Arts and received the College’s SPARK Lifetime Achievement Award.


About UL Lafayette
The University of Louisiana at Lafayette is the second largest university in the state, with more than 17,000 students. It’s a public institution that awards bachelor’s, master’s and doctoral degrees. It includes diverse offerings from the humanities to scientific research and is a national leader in areas like computer science, biology and nursing. Its student-athletes – Louisiana’s Ragin’ Cajuns – compete in NCAA Division I, the highest level of collegiate competition.

Document last revised Tuesday, April 24, 2012 4:26 PM

Copyright 2003 by the University of Louisiana at Lafayette
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