Moutaz Khouja oral history interview, 2014 June 09
In this interview, Dr. Moutaz Khouja, professor at the University of North Carolina at Charlotte, reminisces about Bonnie Cone, his friend and neighbor from the College Downs neighborhood in Charlotte. He recalls his first impressions of Ms. Cone at a neighborhood dinner hosted by the previous owner of his house, Dr. Herbert Hechenbleikner, and comments on the modesty, positivity, generosity, and respect for others that Ms. Cone exhibited throughout the years he knew her. He shares some of Bonnie Cone's iconic sayings, recalls her sharing stories about her childhood and days at Duke and in Washington, D.C., and describes her leadership style, her involvement with UNC Charlotte when he first met her in the early 1990s, and her relationships with Chancellor Woodward, Dr. Hechenbleikner, and Dr. Loy Witherspoon. Dr. Khouja also discusses the College Downs neighborhood, his memories of Dr. Hechenbleikner, and his understanding of Bonnie Cone's vision for UNC Charlotte. Other topics include restaurants that Bonnie Cone frequented, her caretakers in her later years, and the College Downs Garden Club.
Dr. Moutaz Khouja was a 52-year-old man at the time of interview, which took place in his office in the Friday Building at the University of North Carolina at Charlotte. He was born in Homs, Syria, in 1961. He was educated at the University of Toledo and Kent State University and was employed as a teaching fellow at Kent State University, a visiting assistant professor at Shippensburg University of Pennsylvania, and an Assistant, Associate, and full Professor in the Belk College of Business at the University of North Carolina at Charlotte.