Javon Akil Rogers Stovall, 27, unexpectedly passed away due to complications with epilepsy on November 18, 2021, while attending graduate school at Florida International University (FIU). Javon’s passing shocked our community and was deeply felt by many students, staff, and faculty at FIU in addition to family members and former colleagues back in his home state of Iowa.
To honor Javon’s life and to encourage the continuation of his legacy, friends, colleagues, and family members are asking for support to continue building funds for the Javon A. Stovall Memorial (JASM) Scholarship.
A Celebration of Life was held on November 22, 2021, at FIU with over 200 family members and FIU community members present, as well as friends and colleagues from afar who attended virtually.
Watch the video below to hear directly from many people who knew him well.
In Spring 2022, we began awarding at least one eligible FIU graduate student annually who carries forward what Javon exemplified during his lifetime. We know Javon would smile knowing that this scholarship supports students who continue the type of work he was hoping to accomplish in his lifetime.
Javon was working on his master’s degree in Higher Education at FIU. He was expected to graduate in Spring 2022. Javon was planning to apply for FIU’s doctoral program in teaching and learning with a concentration in sociocultural and curriculum studies. As a graduate assistant in the Pride Center in the Office of Social Justice and Inclusion, Javon wanted to better not only himself, but his community, and the world. He was a queer, disabled student of color who valued social justice education, leadership development, and scholarship. Through his education, Javon quickly connected with faculty and students showing support, kindness, and compassion to everyone he met. He actively encouraged others to find their passion and strived to make others feel accepted, included, and valued no matter what which inspired everyone around him.
Javon was born to Julie Kay Rogers and Joseph Stovall in Iowa City, Iowa where he grew up. Javon attended West High School, where he started growing his passion of all things music. After graduating high school in 2012, Javon first pursued his passion in music at Luther College in Decorah, Iowa. He later left Luther to attend Kirkwood Community College and eventually the University of Iowa (UI), where he earned degrees at both institutions in May of 2020. Javon was then accepted to graduate school at FIU.
While a student at Iowa, Javon was highly involved with many groups and organizations. Javon was president of the Old Gold Acapella group, an assistant program coordinator with Leadershape through the Center for UI Student Involvement and Leadership, was a member of the Human Rights Student Collective, participated in student government, and was involved with several other organizations.
Javon's love of coffee was a staple of his personality. He will be remembered for exchanges over coffee and wine with either lots of humor, deep discussion, or fun conversation. Javon’s laughter was infectious. He was an extraordinary listener. His big personality matched his big bear hugs, which were always warm and sincere. Javon touched many lives with his caring and unique energy. He will always be an inspiration to many and this scholarship supports and continues to inspire others as he did.
If you are interested in making a gift to the Javon A. Stovall Memorial Scholarship, please donate via the form below.