Covell & Brinley Awards

A Davis Tradition Since 1944

J. Price Gittinger - 1962 (Covell)

Gittinger came to UC Davis in 1929 to teach English and be Supervisor of Musical Activities.  Energetic and resourceful, he could develop much out of little. He directed the glee club, orchestra, and band; he played the viola and trombone and was in the Sacramento Symphony.  By 1940 he produced a trophy-winning marching band.  The original “Aggie Fight Song” traditionally is attributed to Gittinger.

In ‘46 he became the first Dean of Students, and he initiated the first Extension programs on campus.  From 1960 until his death, he was Associate Director of Relations with Schools on a UC-wide basis. In 1967, the CA Association of Secondary School Administrators gave him its annual Award for Distinguished Service, the only recipient who had never been a secondary school administrator. 

While the student body was still small,

—He opened musical activities to the faculty and town, was associated with almost every musical event in town

—Directed the Community Church choir 15 years

—Was director of the Fourth of July band 20 years

—Helped with youth organizations and was often called upon to speak in neighboring towns

—Was president of the Davis Rotary Club 1959-60, and club’s song leader several years

—Was district 516 chairman of Rotary International Students, two years

—Was governor-elect of Rotary District 516

—Arranged several annual festivals for international students under Rotary’s VISA program

—Was chairman of the Rotary Foundation

—Was, later in ’68, chairman of United Crusade

—Was chairman of the Boy Scout drive

—Was active in Phi Beta Kappa and when Davis students were initiated at Berkeley, several times he brought Berkeley officers to Davis for a separate initiation.

The annual UCD award to an outstanding senior is named for Gittinger.

Additional activites listed in the July 5, 1962 Enterprise:

—Yolo County YMCA board member five years

—Chairman, Davis Area YMCA’s fund drive

—Chairman, Davis 4th of July celebration one year

—Vice chairman, Yolo district of the Boy Scouts


Presented by Harry Whitcombe July 4 at UC athletic field