Vol. LXXIII, No. 3
View from the Showroom: Joe Serra, ’82 12
Coach Mike Turner, ’69, Reflects on 39 Memorable Years 16
Celebrating the Printmaker’s Art 19
winter - spring
T he M agazine
Inner Circle Marty Nesbitt, ’85, was part of the elite team that secured Barack Obama’s presidential victory.
A lbion C ollege
“While at Albion I have constantly been encouraged to learn, explore, and experience new things, expanding my abilities and my mind. Whether promoting religious understanding, introducing new ways to serve others, or asking elementary students to express their thoughts through art, I’ve enjoyed being able to instigate similar growth in others. I am grateful for these opportunities, made possible in part by the generous scholarships I’ve received.”
Autumn Charnley, ’09
A member of Alpha Phi Omega service fraternity and Wesley Fellowship, Autumn is majoring in history and minoring in art. She is currently completing her student teaching at Harrington Elementary School in Albion. Autumn calls Greenville, Mich. home.
Your generous support of the Annual Fund provides all of our students with the lifechanging experience of an Albion College
office of institutional advancement 611 e. porter st. albion, mi 49224 517/629-0242 email@example.com www.albion.edu/alumni/giving.asp
education. Please make your gift to the Albion Annual Fund today. For more information, go to: www.albion.edu/alumni/giving.asp or call 517/629-0242.
IoTriumphe! Staff Editor: Sarah Briggs Contributing Writers: Morris Arvoy, ’90, Randi Heathman, ’03, Bobby Lee, Jake Lloyd, ’07, Jake Weber Class Notes Writers: Nikole Lee, Luann Shepherd Design: Susan Carol Rowe
Web Manager: Nicole Rhoads Io Triumphe! is published three times annually by the Office of Communications, Albion College, 611 E. Porter St., Albion, MI 49224. It is distributed free to alumni and friends of the College.
winter-spring 2008-09 The Magazine for Alumni and Friends of Albion College
POSTMASTER: Send address changes to Office of Communications, Albion College, 611 E. Porter St., Albion, MI 49224. World Wide Web: www.albion.edu
The Meaning of Success Over three decades, basketball coach Mike Turner, ’69, taught his players how to live, not just how to win.
Marty Nesbitt, ’85, uses business smarts to create political capital.
Restoration After a lengthy conservation process, the Albion print collection begins the journey home.
About Our Name The unusual name for this publication comes from a yell written by members of the Class of 1900. The beginning words of the yell, “Io Triumphe!,” were probably borrowed from the poems of the Roman writer, Horace. Some phrases were taken from other college yells and others from a Greek play presented on campus during the period.
Cars Joe Serra, ’82, is becoming adept at avoiding auto industry potholes.
C. AMOS PHOTO
In 1936, the alumni of Albion College voted to name their magazine after the yell which by then had become a College tradition. For years, Albion’s incoming students have learned these lines by heart:
Cover photo by Victor Powell, Chicago, Ill.
Albion College is committed to a policy of equal opportunity and non-discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation and of race, color, national origin, religion, sex, age, or disability, as protected by law, in all educational programs and activities, admission of students, and conditions of employment.
2 Presidential Ponderings 25 Perspectives L. KATZ PHOTO
Io Triumphe! Io Triumphe! Haben swaben rebecca le animor Whoop te whoop te sheller de-vere De-boom de ral de-i de-pa— Hooneka henaka whack a whack A-hob dob balde bora bolde bara Con slomade hob dob rah! Al-bi-on Rah!
(Top) Students tried their hand at African drumming during a Black History Month workshop sponsored by the Albion Music Department, the Office of Intercultural Affairs, and the Office of Campus Programs and Organizations. (C. Amos photo.)
3 Briton Bits 26 Alumni Association News 27 Albionotes 41 Li’l Brits Winter-Spring 2008-09 | 1
P r es ! de n t ! a l po n de r ! n gs
The “A” Team Winston Churchill once said, “If we are together nothing is impossible. If we are divided all will fail.” He was speaking at Harvard in 1943 on the power of partnerships—in this case the importance of the Anglo-American alliance. I believe that the value of partnerships is just as strong in 2009—not just for nations, but for colleges. Working in concert with other organizations on projects of mutual benefit has been a strength for Albion College for decades, and today it is more important than ever for Albion’s future success. In terms of academic life, Albion’s affiliation with the Great Lakes Colleges Association (GLCA), a regional consortium of 13 private liberal arts colleges, has been especially noteworthy. Our faculty members, along with their colleagues at the other member colleges, have engaged in information-sharing and networking that have advanced their teaching and research agendas. And our students have enjoyed greatly expanded opportunities for off-campus study through programs operated by member colleges both here in the United States and abroad. The GLCA will soon celebrate five decades of constructive collaboration. Albion College has also worked closely with the Greater Albion community for many years on economic development and educational initiatives that have furthered the goals of both college and town. Over the past 25 years, the College has supported infrastructure improvements, helped establish a downtown Family Health Center in conjunction with Oaklawn Hospital, and partnered with the Albion Public
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Schools in designing both formal classroom experiences and mentoring programs. Most recently, our Maymester program has brought together our Education Department faculty, prospective student teachers, and K-12 teachers and students in a themed approach to teaching and learning that has given our students new insights into their chosen profession and enriched the education of the youngsters with whom they have worked. The Maymester is now entering its third year. As part of our strategic planning, we are developing new partnerships within and beyond the higher education community. As we look at our curriculum and the professional skills that will be in demand in the coming years, we believe we must build on our traditional strengths in the physical and life sciences. Albion has long been known for its rigorous programs in the sciences, and our alumni have gone on to prestigious graduate and professional schools and to distinguished careers. We now hope to create new relationships that will give our students even more career choices in engineering, emerging technologies, and health care. As career opportunities grow in the environmental sciences, we also intend to join with the Pierce Cedar Creek Institute, an environmental education center south of Grand Rapids, and similar organizations to more fully prepare our students for work in this arena. This latter initiative reflects the emphasis we have given sustainability in our strategic planning.
We are continuing our alliance with the city of Albion through our CollegeCommunity Connection program, and we are examining how we can advance economic development in the area. As you may recall from the fall edition of Io Triumphe!, Albion’s sister-city relationship with Noisyle-Roi, France continues to flourish. That relationship has made possible numerous cultural exchanges, internships for our students, and a recent collaboration with ESCIA, a business school affiliated with the Versailles Chamber of Commerce. We are now pursuing a formal relationship with another French university in the same locale to open up even more study opportunities for our students. Multiple strategic partnerships such as these are a distinctive feature of our strategic plan, and will help ensure the success of the plan. They will allow for a pooling of resources, broader leadership, increased sustainability for new initiatives, enhanced visibility (regional, national, and international), and most importantly, more opportunities for our students that will immeasurably enrich their on-campus learning. As we move forward, we encourage you, our alumni, parents, and friends, to help us identify new partnerships and expand the ones we have. I assure you that we will give your ideas every consideration as we determine how we can best prepare our students for dynamic leadership in their professions and for broader contributions to society as a whole. Donna Randall President firstname.lastname@example.org
T h e lat e st n e w s aro u n d camp u s
Br ! to n B ! t s the Rock
M. ARVOY PHOTO
Women’s History Month 2009 (in March) featured a women’s bazaar, along with the traditional Anna Howard Shaw Lecture. Sold at the bazaar were products made by local businesses and artists, as well as arts, crafts, and other products from 38 countries around the world brought to the campus by Ten Thousand Villages, one of the world’s largest fair trade organizations. Trisha Franzen, associate professor of women’s and gender studies, gave the Anna Howard Shaw Lecture on the lecture’s namesake, a leading suffragist and the subject of a forthcoming book by Franzen.
Albion Introduces New Program to Attract Veterans Thanks to the new G.I. Bill that goes into effect in August 2009, qualified veterans enrolling at Albion College will receive free tuition, monthly housing allowances, and textbook stipends. These benefits are offered through the G.I. Bill’s Yellow Ribbon Program, under which private colleges and universities work with the Veterans Administration to provide broader choices for veterans and ensure that college attendance is affordable. “We believe Albion College will provide military veterans with an exceptional education,” noted President Donna Randall, in announcing Albion’s program. “In return, we will greatly benefit from their presence and life experiences.”
The Post-9/11 Veterans Education Assistance Act of 2008 assists those who served an aggregate period of active duty after Sept. 10, 2001, of at least 36 months. Other eligibility requirements are spelled out at: www.gibill.va.gov. “Military veterans have more options in higher education now than ever before, and Albion College is a full partner in helping them achieve their college goals,” said Doug Kellar, vice president for enrollment. “We have been working hard to make college affordable for everyone in these tough economic times, and we’re pleased to be able to assist our veterans.” Albion also is a member of the Servicemembers Opportunity Colleges (SOC) Consortium, a select group of
colleges and universities dedicated to helping military members and their families get college degrees. Albion is the only undergraduate liberal arts college in Michigan with the Servicemembers Opportunity Colleges designation. In addition to free tuition, Albion provides assistance for veterans, including academic support and counseling services, a Veterans Advisory Council (composed of faculty and students who have served in the military), and a study area and lounge space for veterans and their families. To learn more about Albion’s programs for veterans, go to: www.albion.edu/ admissions/veterans .
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David Trimble, the Northern Ireland leader whose decision to agree to powersharing with the nation’s Catholic minority led to a Nobel Peace Prize, will David Trimble offer the Calvaruso Keynote Address at the 2009 Elkin R. Isaac Symposium. The address, scheduled for Thursday, April 23 at 7 p.m. in Goodrich Chapel, is open to the public and free of charge. It caps off a day that includes the annual Honors Convocation and research presentations by nearly 90 students. Trimble was invited to give the Calvaruso Address after former Sen. George Mitchell, who was to present this year’s lecture, withdrew on becoming the Middle East envoy for the Obama administration in January. While focusing his talk on the Middle East, Trimble will share the lessons he learned in negotiating the Belfast Agreement, and how those may be relevant to ending the conflicts between Palestine and Israel. More information on all of the Isaac Symposium events is available at: www.albion.edu/library/Isaac/ .
Wilch in Nature Albion geologist Thomas Wilch is a co-author on an article in the March 19 Nature describing historical changes in the West Antarctic ice sheet and how those may serve as models for changes in the ice sheet today. As global warming has intensified in recent years, concerns have grown about how the melting of Antarctic ice could contribute to rising sea levels. Wilch was one of the researchers involved in retrieving and studying sediment samples that provide a detailed history of the ice sheet 3-5 million years ago. Wilch’s work in Antarctica was covered in the winter-spring 2006-07 Io Triumphe! and is available online at: www.albion.edu/iotriumphe/ (view archives).
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VanAken Tabbed for Thiel College Presidency Troy VanAken, who has held a number of top administrative posts at Albion over the past 10 years, has recently accepted the presidency of Thiel College in Greenville, Pa. The appointment will be effective later this summer. Currently executive vice president for the College, VanAken joined Albion in 1998 as vice president for information technology. In 2002, he was awarded an American Council on Education Fellowship and worked at San Jose State University before returning to Albion. VanAken served as assistant vice president for instructional technology and assistant professor of mathematics at the University of Evansville in Indiana prior to coming to Albion College. He also has
started three successful technology-related companies. “This presidency represents an outstanding opportunity for Troy, and I know he will continue to demonstrate at Thiel the strong and committed leadership that he has shown at Albion,” President Donna Randall said. “Troy has served Albion College very well in a variety of roles over the past 10 years. As executive vice president, he has offered me wise counsel in many areas over the past two years. Likewise, he has been a supportive and insightful colleague for the other members of the President’s Advisory Council. Troy’s broad range of experience in higher education administration makes him eminently suited for this new role.”
Schuler’s Celebrates Centennial
“We have Albion alumni who came on their first date and come back every year on their anniversary,” smiles Larry Schuler, ’82, president and fourth-generation owner of Schuler’s Restaurant & Pub, celebrating its 100th anniversary this year. One of the region’s venerable dining destinations, Schuler’s is almost synonymous with “celebration” at Albion College, hosting graduation, reunion, wedding, and other special-event dinners. Schuler’s warm hospitality and consistent Midwest culinary flair, combined with an appreciation for history and education, have created a special synergy between the College and the Marshall-based restaurant. Larry Schuler stresses that his grandfather, Win Schuler, ’30, cemented the Albion-Schuler’s relationship with his focus on hospitality. “My grandfather created cheese spread and meatballs—which were made from steak trimmings—in the 1950s as a way of welcoming hungry people,” he explains. “We’re about hospitality. That is our passion.” Schuler’s will host a yearlong Centennial Celebration, with many events being planned. A 100 Days of Summer Celebration, to kick off in April, will bring together food and music, with Tuesday “Mug Night,” Wednesday night entertainment, and Thursday “Grill Night.” Going into its second century, Schuler’s will be adding collectibles and product offerings, one of which will be a private-label wine. The wine will be available only at the Marshall restaurant and at Schu’s Grill & Bar in St. Joseph. “Each generation has to move forward,” enthuses Schuler of the new offering. “That’s what has kept us in business for 100 years.” PHOTO COURTESY OF SCHULER’S
Nobel Laureate Keynotes Symposium
For more information on the 100th anniversary events, visit the Schuler’s Web site at: www. SchulersRestaurant.com (under events).
Albion Adds British Horse Society Certification In fall 2009, Albion’s Held Equestrian Center will introduce its new British Horse Society (BHS) instructional program. The program, which will allow Albion students to train to become internationally-certified equine professionals while earning their bachelor’s degree, is available at no other Midwestern school and at very few other colleges nationwide. “The British Horse Society is recognized worldwide as a top international standard for riding instructors and stable managers,” explains Held Center director George Halkett, who is a BHS International Level II instructor (BHS II, reg.). “Bringing this program to Albion will add an important dimension to our current equestrian offerings.” Halkett spearheaded the development of the program, the seeds for which were sown when the Held Equestrian Center was approved as an official BHS riding center in 2007. Each week, students in the program
will ride at least two times and attend two unmounted lectures regarding horse care, feeding, and stable management. All barn work will allow students to practice the skills needed to pass the stringent examinations administered by BHS representatives. The BHS certification system for equestrian professionals is recognized in 32 countries worldwide and requires its program graduates to have strong riding abilities on the flat and over fences, as well as a strong background in horse training and horse knowledge and care. The equestrian certification program that will run in conjunction with Albion’s degree program was adopted as a means to provide hands-on training for students interested in equine careers. A separate, full-time track for those who wish to pursue certification through the British Horse Society without enrolling at Albion is also available; this training course is expected to require two years for completion.
Live at 30 Rock By Jake Weber
PHOTO COURTESY OF S. GREEN
PHOTO COURTESY OF C. TALLERICO
A semester spent watching television—in the studio, instead of on the couch—was an eyeopening experience last fall for students Christoph Tallerico, ’10, and Stephanie Green, ’09. As participants in the Great Lakes Colleges Association’s New York Arts Program, Tallerico and Green gained an appreciation for the presChristoph Tallerico Stephanie Green sures and pleasures of creating live television through their respective internships how different, yet similar they are in front of with Saturday Night Live (SNL) and NBC an audience—that was a great experience as Nightly News with Brian Williams at NBC’s well.” headquarters in New York. Green, an English major, put her journal Tallerico, who has a self-designed major ism studies to use in the NBC news studios, in music and media, worked with Lenny providing research support for stories. “There Pickett, music director and leader of SNL’s was a great sense of fulfillment when I’d see house band. Tallerico researched upcomsomeone on national television that I preing acts and assisted the performers who interviewed for the piece,” she notes. Green accompanied each show’s musical guest. also ran a teleprompter and even did a vocal From Beyoncé to Coldplay, “it was neat to translation for a news story. “After that,” she see what they’re all like in person,” he admits. remembers thinking, “there’s not one thing I “Listening to them perform live . . . to see can’t do here at Nightly News.”
R. HEATHMAN PHOTO
By Randi Heathman, ’03
Held Center director George Halkett speaks with first-year student Lauren Levy at the conclusion of her lesson. “Working in the horse industry is a way of life, not a job,” Halkett said. “Our goal is to produce graduates of this program who understand the daily demands of running a barn and are fully qualified to work in the field.” For more information on the BHS certification program, go to: www.albion.edu/heldcenter/ . Along with providing Tallerico and Green with some new professional skills, the internships gave insights about their future careers. “Every single person at Nightly News cares so much about what they do. I sat with news anchors Brian Williams and Lester Holt in editorial meetings, and their hearts are open to everyone in this country and world,” says Green, noting that she continues to have contact with Williams and several other Nightly News staff members. “My respect for the news industry has grown an enormous amount.” “It’s amazing how so many departments can work independently throughout the week and come together toward one common goal by Saturday night,” reflects Tallerico of SNL. “I realized that my major, combining music and video and art, has a place out there. It was an incredible semester.” Winter-Spring 2008-09 | 5
Two Minutes with . . . Vicki Sweitzer
By Morris Arvoy
Io Triumphe!: How do you bring your experience from the business world into the classroom? Sweitzer: Working at the steel mill taught me a lot about how to communicate with a given audience and earn their trust. Once you’ve done that, you can do your job better. It’s so basic yet so few people actually do these things . . . so few companies do these things. You can do well and do good. You can make money and treat your employees well at the same time. Those are the companies that are the most successful. It’s about managing relationships, not people. So now I really make an effort to learn all my students’ names, get to know something about them, establish a level of trust and mutual respect. You’ve spent quite a bit of time studying what makes good teaching. Talk about some of the techniques you use to keep students engaged in your courses. It’s definitely challenging. The topic I teach— management—lends itself to real-life examples. If we’re talking about leadership, I can show the movie, Rudy, in class. If we do a case study on Krispy Kreme, I’ll bring in their doughnuts, and we’ll experience the product while we talk about the company. It’s about making the effort as a teacher, being creative. I ask my students for feedback—at mid-semester, I always ask them what they want to see more of and what they want to see less of (with the caveat that exams are off the table!). I want to know what’s
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D. TRUMPIE PHOTO
Before earning her Ph.D., Vicki Sweitzer worked as a safety engineer for AK Steel Corp. and later for Harvard Business School’s executive education program. She is currently assistant professor of economics and management at Albion.
“I don’t ask my students to call me ‘Dr. Sweitzer,’” says management professor Vicki Sweitzer. “I think titles create barriers between us. I didn’t get my Ph.D. for the title. I got it so that I could have the job that I have now. If the only way I can get my students’ respect is by my title, I think I’ve already lost the battle. I want them to respect me and trust me for what I can do for them, and how I can help them develop.” not working. I summarize their feedback, and let them know how I will adjust the rest of the course based on their comments.
and have a good time while we learn. I’m very spoiled by the students I have here. What do you like most about teaching?
How do you connect management theory to real life? A year ago in the fall, I asked my students to apply management principles to improving the children’s play area at Victory Park. The point was to understand the idea of civic engagement while using basic management functions. It worked out well. As we were finishing up at the playground, people from the town thanked us for doing the work—it really hit home for the students that they were doing well and doing good. You’re now in your fourth semester at Albion. What’s your impression of our students? I love my students. They’re thoughtful. They ask good questions. They’re engaged. They do their work. They’ve got a sense of humor. We laugh
I like the possibilities. I thoroughly enjoy coming to work every day because it’s new every day, and I get the opportunity to help people. It’s a great opportunity, but it’s also a great responsibility. Helping students find that one thing that they’re most passionate about—that’s the best part of what I do. I want to create leaders who make thoughtful choices, and who are ethical and civic-minded. Who wouldn’t want that job? My students push me and challenge me—they make me think about what I believe and what is important. And then when you see their success—and hear them say how they are using what they have learned later on in an internship or a job—I know what I’m doing is worthwhile. It’s about helping people develop into what and who they were meant to be.
Making Waves You don’t have to be in the room long with Ryan Gunderson, ’09, to learn that he is a born competitor. Since arriving at Albion four years ago, he has concentrated on achieving personal bests in the swimming pool and developing his wicked fastball on the pitcher’s mound. His early playing career also included stints as a basketball forward and football wide receiver, but his slim build— Gunderson stands 6-feet-3 and weighs in at 195 pounds—really made him a natural in the pool and on the diamond. In high school he was an All-America swimmer and earned all-state honors in baseball and swimming. A sprint freestyler for the Britons and 2008-09 team co-captain, Gunderson finished his senior season holding the individual school records in the 50- and 100-yard events as well as in the 200 and 400 medley relays. The month of February proved to be challenging, as he pushed himself to stay in top form for the MIAA Swimming and Diving Championships and to get ready for the opening of baseball season. There were many days when he would get in a couple of hours of practice in the pool, and then later he would slide on his baseball mitt and
C. AMOS PHOTO
By Bobby Lee
After closing out his senior season in swimming holding four all-time Albion College records, including both the 50- and 100-yard freestyle events, Ryan Gunderson has started adding “W’s” as a pitcher for the Briton baseball team this spring. During his four-year career on the mound, he has twice thrown a one-hitter complete game in league play.
climb the makeshift mound in the Bernard T. Lomas Fieldhouse to put in three more hours of baseball practice. Over the past three baseball seasons, the Grosse Pointe native has pitched his way to a pair of second team All-MIAA awards, amassing a 14-7 career record with a 3.00 earned run average. His record against MIAA foes stands at a glistening 12-4. “I came to Albion to play baseball,” Gunderson says. “Once I got here I missed the competition of swimming. I realized I have a talent for it, and I didn’t want to give it up quite yet.”
Briton Sports on the Web Did you know that you can find all of the following on the Albion College sports Web site? • Sports news and results
• SportsNet broadcast schedules
• Schedules and rosters
• Sports archives
Follow the Britons at: www.albion.edu/sports/. It’s the next best thing to being here!
To receive regular sports updates, sign up for Briton SportsNews at: www.albion.edu/sports/ or e-mail Bobby Lee at
During the 2008-09 regular season in swimming, he lowered the school record in both sprint freestyle events and reached the “B” cut qualifying standard for the NCAA Division III Championships. Gunderson is also anxious to turn in a good season on the mound. He’d like to attract the attention of scouts that would allow him the opportunity to play at the professional level. “My dedication this season is stronger than ever before,” he says. “I’m making sure that I’m throwing all the time, lifting all the time. All I’m asking for [in professional baseball] is a shot. If you ask me, I think I can go as far as I can. But that’s why I’m here at Albion. If it doesn’t work out, I’m going to have a degree to fall back on, and I can take pride in that. At the same time, I don’t want to give up my goal until someone proves to me that I can’t do it.” A Dean’s List student at Albion, Ryan Gunderson is an economics and management major. He holds a Presidential Academic Scholarship.
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8 | Io Triumphe! V. POWELL PHOTO
By Sarah Briggs
Marty Nesbitt, ’85, uses business smarts to create political capital. Marty Nesbitt and his best friend got together this year—as they have many times before—to watch the Super Bowl. They dissected key plays and rated the commercials, laughed and told stories. For them, it’s an annual tradition that stretches back for more than a decade. But this year there was an important difference: Nesbitt’s best friend had just become president of the United States, and they were watching the game in the private living quarters at the White House.
Included in Marty Nesbitt’s professional portfolio are his roles as president of The Parking Spot, which operates off-airport parking areas in 10 major metropolitan markets; chair of the Chicago Housing
Nesbitt was introduced to Barack Obama in the early 1990s by Michelle Obama’s brother, Craig Robinson. The two bonded during pick-up games of basketball that Robinson organized, and later over Scrabble games with their wives and family vacations with their children. Nesbitt’s wife, obstetrician Anita Blanchard, delivered both of the Obama children, and Barack Obama is godfather to Nesbitt’s youngest son. “We’re very close,” Nesbitt says. “There is a sense of mutual support. I get as much support from him as he gets from me. I know he would be there if I really needed him.” As Obama’s political aspirations grew, Nesbitt was at his side, helping to plan strategy and eventually managing campaign finances as Obama ran for the Illinois State Senate in 1996 and then for the U.S. Senate in 2004. For the past two years, Nesbitt served as treasurer for Obama’s presidential campaign, overseeing a fund that grew to over $700 million—the largest sum ever raised by a presidential campaign and more than the combined total raised by the presidential candidates in 2004. He attributes the fundraising success to the power of Obama’s message (“we had a great candidate”) and to a finely-tuned organization utilizing both traditional fundraising techniques and an Internet operation that attracted more grassroots donors than any previous campaign. In submitting their reports to the Federal Election Commission (FEC), Nesbitt notes wryly, “We pushed the limits on the ability of the FEC system to handle the data.”
Authority; and campaign treasurer for Barack Obama’s 2008 presidential campaign. Winter-Spring 2008-09 | 9
With Obama advisers David Axelrod and Valerie Jarrett, Nesbitt was involved in decisions on campaign spending. “My role,” he explains, “was to be strategic about how and when and why we were spending money.” As the campaign gained momentum, Nesbitt served as a sounding board on broader issues as well, including Obama’s pivotal speech on race and his relationship with Rev. Jeremiah Wright. “We talked about everything during the campaign,” Nesbitt recalls. “Everybody’s perspective got considered. I weighed in when I could be helpful.” When did he first sense that Obama might make it all the way to the White House? “There was a period of time after Super Tuesday,” Nesbitt says, “when it became clear that he was going to win the primary race and become the Democratic nominee. The reality that he might one day be president started to set in.” Inauguration Day was the culmination of long days on the campaign trail that, Nesbitt admits, could sometimes be “grueling and emotional.” As he sat in the stands watching his friend take the oath of office, Nesbitt says it was a joyous moment. “I was very proud, and I was very happy for the country. We clearly have picked the right person for this moment in time.” Though he briefly considered taking a job in the Obama administration, Nesbitt decided to remain in Chicago, where he is founder, president, and CEO of The Parking Spot, which has off-airport parking operations in 10 cities nationwide, including Atlanta, Chicago, Dallas, and Los Angeles. “I want to do what I do best,” he explains. “I’m a business person.” With 2008 revenues totaling nearly $100 million, The Parking Spot is distinguished by its large corporate client base, sophisticated online reservation system, and hospitality features including filling customers’ gas tanks and washing their cars while they’re traveling. Nesbitt started The Parking Spot with Chicago business executive Penny Pritzker, who also played an important role in the Obama campaign as national finance chair. Nesbitt’s business career got its start at Albion where he was a member of the College’s professional management program (now known as the Gerstacker Liberal Arts Institute for Professional Management). “Albion teaches you how to rigorously think through issues and solve problems,” Nesbitt says, noting that the professional internships he completed at Deloitte, a top public accounting firm, “brought the classroom learning to life.” Frank Burdine, ’68, who at the time recruited interns for Deloitte’s Detroit office, says Nesbitt was “a team player who had a great work ethic and wanted to learn as well as make contributions.” 10 | Io Triumphe!
Nesbitt’s competitive streak was evident on the basketball court at Albion, where he played guard for the Britons and was a co-captain his senior year. “I remember Marty as a strong leader, and someone who helped make those around him better,” notes former men’s basketball coach Mike Turner. “His enthusiasm was contagious.” After graduating from Albion in 1985, Nesbitt joined General Motors’ finance division, where he managed the company’s borrowing requirements and was involved in the securitization and sale of $4 billion in auto loans, an industry first. He earned an M.B.A. at the University of Chicago as a GM Fellow, and later joined LaSalle Partners in Chicago, where he became a partner and managed several portfolios of real estate investments with a combined market value of more than $1 billion. He also built the firm’s portfolio of parking assets. Beyond his work responsibilities, Nesbitt serves on the Chicago Housing Authority and was appointed chair in 2006. He also sits on the boards of the University of Chicago Laboratory School and Chicago’s Museum of Contemporary Art. His friendship with Barack Obama has put Nesbitt in the spotlight in ways that he would never have anticipated. He has been featured as one of the president’s inner circle by news organizations including Sports Illustrated, CBSNews.com, the Los Angeles Times, and the New York Times. Nesbitt says the friends, many of whom live in the same Hyde Park neighborhood that the Obamas call home, are intent on maintaining their ties with one another. “Friends and family are really what we all live for,” he told CBS News in January. “And that’s not gonna change just because [Barack] is president.” Some commentators have recently noted that this generation of African-American leaders has a different world view than those who came of age during the civil rights movement in the 1950s and ’60s. Nesbitt agrees. “Barack Obama shares a perspective on race with many African-Americans our age. . . . Those of us who have gone to diverse academic institutions have learned on an intimate basis that we’re just not very different from each other.” Nesbitt says he and Obama also share a belief that life offers more opportunities than roadblocks and that it’s up to the individual to capitalize on those opportunities.
Nesbitt frequently went on the campaign trail
PHOTO COURTESY OF M. NESBITT
with then-candidate Obama, traversing the country and attending every presidential debate last fall.
“Over time, I got exposed to things that informed me that anything was possible,” he observes. “I was as capable as anyone. . . . There were no constraints on my potential.” The mutual support he shares with Obama and the others in this tightly knit group of friends reinforces that view. As the Obama administration gets under way, Nesbitt hopes an era of reasoned compromise will emerge.
“I’d like to see—and what I think the country would like to see—is a period when both sides of the aisle will start working together to solve our problems. The American people understand there are different points of view and different ideologies, but they won’t tolerate gridlock. Doing nothing is not an option.” Winter-Spring 2008-09 | 11
Cars Joe Serra, â€™82, is becoming adept at avoiding auto industry potholes.
By Sarah Briggs
Joe Serra, â€™82, never imagined he would see a business landscape like the one we are witnessing today. As president of Serra Automotive, which from its Grand Blanc headquarters operates 37 auto franchises at 21 dealerships across the country, Serra is all too familiar with the crisis facing the auto industry. New car sales stand at their lowest point since the early 1980s, and some 900 dealerships nationwide have closed over the past year. The Detroit Three automakers have made deep cuts to control costs, and in order to secure federal government loans totaling in the billions, General Motors and Chrysler have announced restructuring plans that will radically change their product offerings and fundamentally reshape how these companies do business. (Ford is not currently slated to receive any federal loans.) Media reports continue to raise concerns about the companiesâ€™ long-
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The way for the Detroit Three to win car buyers back is through great design coupled with an affordable price, Serra says.
While “green” cars, like the Chevy Volt, starred at this year’s North American International Auto Show in Detroit, Joe Serra believes affordability will remain an issue for the buying public for some time to come. “If we as a country can figure out how to mass-produce these vehicles in an affordable manner, then everyone will get on board,” he notes.
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The impact of these moves by the Detroit Three reaches far beyond those who work for the auto giants and their suppliers. “The restructuring plans announced by GM and Chrysler represent a watershed moment for the industry—and for us as dealers,” Serra says. “The scope of these changes is unprecedented.” Many car dealers now face difficult decisions about their future. Dealers were already coping with sales volumes that had dropped nearly 40 percent from a high of 17 million in 2005. A particularly rapid decline in sales in late 2008 and early 2009, due to the worsening economy and tight credit, has left both the car manufacturers and dealers scrambling. “They can’t right-size fast enough,” Serra says. Added to the immediate challenge of declining sales are the reductions in product offerings that GM announced in February. With GM’s Saturn line targeted for phase-out over the next several years and the number of Pontiac models to be scaled back, Serra is left pondering how to respond. He currently owns Saturn dealerships that rank #2 and #7 nationally in sales, as well as a Pontiac franchise. The future of the
Hummer brand is also uncertain at this point, and Serra’s four Hummer franchises include the #1 and #5 stores in the nation. His dilemma in how best to address all of these changes is repeated at dealerships nationwide. Beyond the labor union concessions and other measures that the U.S. automakers have outlined in their recent proposals to the federal government, what does Serra see as the key strategies for the companies to stem the losses and eventually return to profitability? Rebuilding consumer confidence in their products is a critical first step toward improving their competitive position. “At one time,” Serra says, “there was a tremendous quality gap between U.S.-made cars and imports. Fortunately, that gap is no longer there. I might argue that, in some cases, the quality of domestic products is better than some imports.” The problem, he adds, is one of perception in the marketplace. American car manufacturers have to continually reinforce their message about quality products. “The value for the dollar today is better than it has ever been,” Serra insists. Regaining lost market share will also depend on introducing impressive new products. The only way the domestic manufacturers can win buyers back is through great design coupled with an affordable price, Serra believes. “Fortunately, through a number of the products introduced recently, they’ve done that. That is bringing some people back.” Some of those new products were on display at January’s North American International Auto Show (NAIAS) in Detroit. Serra, who served as this year’s NAIAS senior co-chair, says “this show couldn’t have come at a better time for the U.S. automakers.” It was their chance to share their plans with a worldwide audience. “The eyes and ears of the world were on Detroit,” Serra notes.
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A significant share of the new vehicles introduced were fuel-efficient, environmentally-friendly models. “Green cars were the focal point of the show,” Serra says. One of the auto show’s biggest attractions was the Michigan Economic Development Corporation’s “EcoXperience,” which allowed some 25,000 visitors to take a ride in 10 hybrid and all-electric models on a one-eighth-mile track set up on the lower level of Cobo Center. All 10 were production or concept cars from the Detroit Three. “It was a tremendous hit with the public,” Serra notes. Still, the reality is that the cost of the hybrid and all-electric vehicles will remain high for the short term, and will put such cars out of reach for most consumers. For instance, the Chevy Volt, due out in 2010, could have a sticker price of $40,000. “As much as we want to be green, ultimately it comes down to dollars and cents,” Serra says. “If we as a country can figure out how to mass-produce these vehicles in an affordable manner, then everyone will get on board. But that hasn’t been done yet, and I’m concerned that we’re a long way from achieving it.” The major U.S. automakers today compete not only with one another and with the well established import brands but with new manufacturers entering the domestic market from Asia. “We are seeing many more manufacturers entering this industry,” Serra says. Then there are high-end niche manufacturers based in the U.S. like Tesla and Fisker, which make all-electric and hybrid sports cars. While such brands will always have a small share of the market, Serra thinks we will see more niche entries in the coming years. To stay competitive in this evolving marketplace, the Detroit Three must become leaner and more focused on what they can do best. The current economic crisis is forcing some changes that are undoubtedly overdue, Serra says, but the entire auto industry will emerge more disciplined and more nimble than in the past. “I love the challenges,” he concludes. “Good will come of this.”
As senior co-chair of the 2009 auto show, Joe Serra (center) hosted dignitaries including Gov. Jennifer Granholm (right), who was on hand for a bill signing.
Detroit’s Auto Ambassador As his college graduation approached, Joe Serra was certain about just one thing: “I was determined that I wasn’t going to get into the car business.” His father, Al Serra, had spent his career in auto sales and in 1973 had bought a car dealership in Grand Blanc that would become the foundation for a chain of dealerships to be built in the ensuing years. An economics and management major at Albion, Joe was intrigued by the possibilities of a career in computer sales, especially since the personal computer industry was beginning rapid expansion. However, his father persuaded him to join the family business, and by 1999 it had expanded to include 19 dealerships across the U.S. In early 2000, Joe bought the company, and it has since nearly doubled in size to become the nation’s 10th largest privately held auto dealership group. For the past seven years, Serra has also served on the board of the Detroit Auto Dealers Association, and has just completed a term as president. His involvement with the dealers association led to his role for the past two years as co-chair of the North American International Auto Show (NAIAS), ranked as one of the top five car shows in the world. As NAIAS senior co-chair in 2009, Serra represented the show and its auto-dealer organizers to the nearly 5,500 journalists in attendance from 40 countries, along with many VIP guests. He also hosted Gov. Jennifer Granholm who during her visit to the show signed a bill offering state tax credits for advanced battery makers setting up shop in Michigan. As the economic recession deepened this fall, Serra realized this year’s show would be different from any show in recent memory. In late November came the news that Nissan/Infiniti would not be participating, and then that other companies were scaling back their exhibits. “We went through 84 different floor plans for this year’s show,” he recounts, as they continually readjusted to the changes. On the first day open to the public, a snowstorm hit and made roads nearly impassable throughout the weekend. Still, some 650,000 people attended the show during the week it was open to the public, he says, which was in line with past years. While personally demanding—he generally got only a few hours’ sleep during the early days of the show—he says his involvement has given him a new appreciation for the scope of the auto industry. “It really gave me an exposure to manufacturers that I never would have had otherwise,” he explains, adding that meeting representatives from the international companies on hand was especially enlightening. Winter-Spring 2008-09 | 15
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The Meaning of Success
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Over three decades, basketball coach Mike Turner, ’69, taught his players how to live, not just how to win. By Jake Lloyd, ’07 One cold February evening, Mike Turner made the car ride to Grand Rapids to see the Albion men’s basketball team play at Calvin College. The man who retired as the Britons’ head coach last October didn’t just watch the action on the court, however. As he sat in the stands, observing longtime Albion assistant and now head coach Jody May instruct the players, Turner reconnected with several people from his past. Among those who stopped by to talk were assistant coaches and former players whose graduation years stretched back over more than two decades. At one point in their lives, they had all been a part of Turner’s program. Now, they were successful working adults: doctors, businessmen, teachers, and, of course, coaches. That, more than anything he witnessed on the court, warmed the heart of the man who led the Albion basketball team for 34 seasons. “That’s a very rewarding aspect of coaching—if not the most rewarding part of it,” says Turner, who will retire from the College in May but plans to stay in the area and help the College with fundraising. To outsiders, Turner is probably best known for his impressive numbers in the win-loss column. After taking over the program in 1974, he led the Britons to 527 victories—compared to 319 losses (a .623 winning percentage)—ranking him 10th all-time among Division III coaches for wins. He also won five MIAA championships and took Albion to four NCAA tournaments and a Final Four in 1978, where the Britons placed third.
As former players will tell you, Turner hated to lose; there was never any doubt about that. But winning games was never his primary objective and certainly wasn’t the reason why he decided to stay at Albion for his entire coaching career. Other offers came, chances to move up the coaching ladder. But Turner politely declined each opportunity, instead choosing to stay rooted where he knew he was molding young men while his wife, Peg Mitchell Turner, ’69, was doing just as much good working for the city of Albion’s public schools. “I think he saw something greater than basketball, and Albion provided that,” says Michael Williams, ’78, a member of that Final Four team in 1978. “He’s more than a coach. He became a father and so many other things to us.” Milton Barnes, ’79, was another member of that memorable team. Barnes, who is black, grew up as one of 11 children in a predominantly black Saginaw neighborhood. Then, all of a sudden, he found himself on a campus that had but a handful of black students. It wasn’t an easy transition for Barnes. And he might not have stuck with it if not for his basketball coach, who cared for him like a family member from the time Barnes stepped onto campus. “At first I took it as being overbearing,” Barnes says now of how Turner treated him. “It took a little time for me to accept the direction that he was trying to provide, and luckily I stuck around and didn’t run away from it but continued to embrace it.” Winter-Spring 2008-09 | 17
From the minute I met Coach Turner in 1986, I knew I wanted him to be my coach. Now, 23 years later, he’s still my coach, friend, and mentor. I remember him driving the Briton Bus 75 miles an hour down a snow-covered freeway at 11 p.m.—all while checking through the scorebook from that night’s game. I’ve never been so scared. And, I also remember coach meeting with me in his office at least once a week to make sure my college experience was going well. He changed my life and will probably never fully realize all the lives that he has touched. Ken George, ’90 English Teacher and Varsity Boys Basketball Coach Forest Hills Central High School, Grand Rapids
I am extremely proud to say that I played for Coach Turner and Albion College. Coach T helped me grow as a player, student, person, and a coach. He has played an instrumental role in my life and my career. As a coach, I can only hope that I will have as great an impact on the lives of my players as Coach T had on his. Jon VanderWal, ’01 Head Men’s Basketball Coach Marietta College Marietta, Ohio
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Barnes refers to the time spent under Turner’s wing as the period when he progressed from a boy into a man. Now, three decades later, he’s providing the same guidance for his own players. Barnes is currently the associate head coach at Division I Southern Methodist University. As for Williams, one of his fondest memories of Turner happened during one of his most trying times as a player. It took the player and coach about two years to establish their relationship, but when Williams had to undergo knee surgery as a sophomore there were two people at his bedside when he woke up—his mother and Turner. Now, Williams says, “I’d go to the end of the world for him.” And Turner would do the same for Williams. That’s the commitment he made to his players throughout the years, and that’s the reason he stayed in coaching far longer than he ever anticipated. “It was just that I enjoyed what I was doing here so much,” Turner says. “I really do think that that was the biggest thing . . . feeling that we were serving a good purpose working with young men. And we’ve got so many young guys that are out there coaching right now. It was a good reason to stay here.” Over the years, Turner made minor changes to his coaching philosophy, but his basic tenets never changed: he was Albion’s basketball coach—not to mention golf coach for 30 years, soccer coach for four years, and tennis coach for four years—to teach young men to do the right thing. It was something Turner himself learned while competing in athletics as a teenager. Turner grew up the son of an optometrist father and a mother who was a teacher and girls’ basketball coach. He learned most of what he would later apply to coaching from them as well as his high school basketball coach. When Turner came to Albion to play basketball and soccer in addition to his studies, he knew the importance of balance. He graduated in 1969 and left to get a master’s degree at the University of Arizona. But it didn’t take long for him to return to Albion— college and town—and sign on as an assistant basketball coach for the Britons in 1970. That’s when Turner started teaching young basketball players what was most important in life. “I would think most of my players would tell you that we spent a lot of time talking about doing the right thing and being responsible and how important it is to be a good person,” Turner says. “Philosophically, that has been a real solid base of our program.” It was always about the kids, too, never about the coach. When Turner was nearing the 500-win milestone in 2006, it was the best-kept secret on Albion’s campus. Former player Rick Palmer, ’06, even said he believed that many younger members of that season’s team had no idea what their coach’s record was.
Even during the Britons’ run to the Final Four, when Turner was a young coach who easily could have gotten caught up in the spectacle, he let his players soak up the moment—always staying in the background. “Coach was a cameraman,” says Williams, who is now president and chief executive officer of Orchards Children’s Services, Inc. “He allowed us to be stars. . . . He wanted us to shine.” And he wanted his players to understand that succeeding was about so much more than winning basketball games. His wife, Peg, was his partner in that role. Working in the community, she helped facilitate a connection between the players and community members. And she began a mentoring program, which started with basketball players pairing with local elementary students and has since flourished into a program that has over 200 Albion College students mentoring community children. Peg also served as an away-from-home mother figure for a lot of the players, and the way she and Turner acted—the relationship they were able to maintain despite Turner’s busy coaching schedule— set an example for those in the program. “Peg was our mom, and he was our dad,” says Williams, whose parents divorced while he was in eighth grade. “Mike helped me understand the importance of what a man in the family is, the way he and Peg interacted, the way he loved his daughters.” Today, Turner is the proud father of two married daughters, Amy and Tracy, and he and Peg have four grandchildren. But in a sense, he has hundreds of children all across the United States—and probably the world, too. And nothing makes Turner happier than seeing his former disciples successful. On another frigid Michigan night, Turner made the trip to see Michael Thomas, ’06, coach one of the best high school teams in the state, Kalamazoo Central. Just four years earlier, Thomas had made arguably the most memorable shot in Albion basketball history when his long, buzzer-beating bank shot improbably fell through the net to send the 2004-05 Britons to the Division III Elite Eight. But as happy as Turner was for Thomas on that night in Kresge Gym, he was even prouder of him four years later. Watching his former player pace the sideline, he knew that he’d done his job as Albion basketball coach once again. Another young man was well on his way to a successful career. “I felt so good for Michael watching him make that shot,” Turner says. “But I had the same kind of feeling watching him coach the other day. How well he handled himself coaching was really a thrill too.” Jake Lloyd is a freelance writer living in Durham, N.C. For a retrospective look at Mike Turner’s career in photos, please go to our online edition at: www.albion.edu/iotriumphe .
Restoration Albion College’s Print Collection Begins the Journey Home By Jake Weber When a steam pipe burst in Bobbitt Visual Arts Center on a quiet evening in June 2006, the interior temperature became hot enough to break windows on the second floor. “There were pools of standing water on every horizontal surface, ceilings collapsing, and walls with water running down them,” recalls Albion art history professor Bille Wickre, of the morning following the pipe break. “It felt like a sauna. I was in despair.” What could have been the end of the College’s irreplaceable print collection instead became the catalyst for a massive and ongoing restoration process. Immediately following the pipe break, Albion faculty and staff began evacuating artwork to the College library, but the threat to the collection was severe. “We had more than 2,500 prints that all needed to be evaluated for damage,” Wickre recalls. “Mold, mildew, and paper deterioration were going to destroy the collection if we didn’t get immediate help.” The College called in the Chicago Conservation Center (CCC), which specializes in fine art restoration. A CCC “triage team,” including a specialist in paper restoration, arrived two days after the
Studio art professor Anne McCauley, curator of the College’s print collection, and art historian Bille Wickre survey some of the restored prints. They continue to broaden the collection through donations and selective acquisitions, particularly of contemporary works.
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(Above) Anonymous, “The Calling of Peter,” woodcut, 1488. This woodcut, a page from a biblical text, is an excellent example of 15th-century printmaking processes. It is one of several hundred prints from Albion’s collection that have recently been restored following a damaging steam pipe break at Bobbitt Visual Arts Center. More prints from the Albion collection are shown on the following pages.
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pipe break and removed the entire collection to their studios for evaluation and restoration. It took nearly two months to complete their assessment and recommend treatment plans. Remarkably, they determined that only about 15 percent of the collection sustained damage as a direct result of the pipe break and no prints were lost in the disaster. Over the next two years, the steam-damaged prints were restored and repaired, along with many other prints in need of conservation, and last fall a number of them came home to the Department of Art and Art History. To celebrate their return, the department sponsored an academic symposium and exhibited 68 prints in two galleries in October under the title, “Restoration: Saving Albion’s Prints.” The symposium brought students, faculty, staff, and visitors together to discuss the importance and many challenges of preservation faced by artists and conservators. Selections from the print collection are displayed each year, in the department’s galleries, as part of class
Albrecht Dürer, “The Lamentation” from The Great Passion, woodcut, c.1498. Dürer’s work is noted both for the emotional power of its imagery and its fine detail.
William Hogarth, “Self-Portrait with Dog,” mezzotint, 1745. Hogarth’s selfportrait has a remarkable richness and depth of tones, ranging from velvety blacks to shades of gray to the white of the unprinted paper. 20 | Io Triumphe!
lectures, through loans to museums, and by special appointment to visitors, including students, faculty, and researchers from other institutions. With its broad range of styles, media, and subjects, the collection is a reflection of how artists have explored the human condition over the past six centuries. “We have an extraordinary collection in both depth and breadth. It’s likely one of the finest small college print collections in the nation,” says studio art professor Anne McCauley, the department’s printmaker and print curator. The monetary value of individual works varies, but Wickre and McCauley are quick to note that the collection’s value is far more than monetary. “A lot of the value of our collection is what it represents for teaching art and art history,” Wickre explains. “We use the prints to build our students’ appreciation for these works as artistic expressions, to examine the techniques and styles of the master artists who created them, and to provide a historical context for the non-studio subjects we teach in a way that words on paper cannot.” Francisco José de Goya, “That Dust” from Los Caprichos, etching and aquatint, 1799. Employing an ironic sense of humor, Goya comments on the follies of Spanish society at the end of the 18th century.
Rembrandt van Rijn, “The Vendor of Rat Poison,” etching, 1632. One of several Rembrandts in Albion’s collection, this print demonstrates his masterful use of the etching medium in depicting a scene from everyday life in the 17th century.
Wenceslaus Hollar, “Grasshoppers and Butterflies,” etching, 1646. The near-photographic detail in this etching reveals the artist’s skill in support of the emerging interest in natural history.
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(Right) Edgar Degas, “Mary Cassatt at the Louvre,” etching, c.1876. Degas shows fellow Impressionist Cassatt in a pleasurable pursuit, one of the themes of the Impressionists.
McCauley notes that studying and handling prints provides information that can’t be gained from electronic images or even art book reproductions. For many of the department’s classes, “students put on gloves and examine the prints at close range,” she says. “Printing details, ink, and paper are essential to the print. It’s important for students to experience prints in their totality.” Albion’s print collection includes pieces from the 15th century to the present, by such artists as Dürer, Rembrandt, Hogarth, Goya, Gauguin, Hopper, Munch, Kollwitz, Quick-to-See-Smith, and Rauschenberg. Wickre notes that the College has especially fine “collections within the collection” of early woodcuts, as well as 19th-century European, Japanese, and 20th-century American prints. The print collection was begun in the 1940s when Vernon Bobbitt arrived as head of the College’s Art Department. Bobbitt was a canny collector, Wickre says, who was able to snap up historically valuable prints in the years before their values skyrocketed. Art professors Paul Stewart, ’53, Frank Machek, and Richard Brunkus later assisted Bobbitt in acquiring
(Below) Paul Cézanne, “The Bathers,” lithograph, 1899. Working within the traditional subject of bathers, Cézanne transformed the figures by simplifying their forms and placing them into an ambiguous space.
Utagawa Kuniyoshi, “The Actor Nakamura Utaemon,” color woodcut, 1835. One of 84 Japanese prints in Albion’s collection, this woodcut belongs to the Ukiyo-e School. These prints served a similar role to theatrical posters and cartoons in the West. 22 | Io Triumphe!
new works and continued to build the collection after his retirement in 1976. “We have many wonderful prints,” McCauley muses. “Because ours is a teaching collection, we want it to represent the broader community. We’re seeking more works by women and minorities. It’s difficult to keep the collection growing when the cost of fine prints has increased so tremendously.” She adds that some of the recent growth of the print collection has come through donated prints from alumni and friends. As Art and Art History Department chair, Wickre notes that juggling the budget between restoration of existing pieces and future acquisitions remains a challenge. Still, surrounded as she is by works representing many of the world’s great artists, motivation for the task is always at hand. Currently, about 40 percent of the Albion College print collection has been restored by the Chicago Conservation Center. The Department of Art and Art History continues to seek funding for the restoration of the remainder. For more information, please contact Bille Wickre, chair, at 517/629-0246 or by e-mail at email@example.com.
Edward Hopper, “Night Shadows,” etching, 1921. Hopper represents the challenges of modern urban living with a striking drama that reinforces our notions of isolation.
Grant Wood, “Arbor Day,” lithograph, 1937. “Arbor Day” is a fine example of Midwestern Regionalism of the mid-1930s. Käthe Kollwitz, “The People Afraid from War,” woodcut, 1923. Having lost a son in World War I, Kollwitz expressed her opposition to war in stark and haunting images.
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Fighting Water with Water
PHOTOS COURTESY OF CHICAGO CONSERVATION CENTER
Reverse side, after restoration.
Reverse side, before restoration. One of the more than 700 Albion prints that have now been treated at the Chicago Conservation Center is this 16th-century woodcut by Albrecht Dürer, “St. Veronica.” Restoration of this piece included addressing discoloration that had come with age and repairing a five-inch vertical tear, possibly the result of deliberate folding of the print. (The tear is now almost invisible.) Debris from at least two prior hinge additions was removed. The conservators worked around purple staining on the back of the print (probably from a collector’s mark) to ensure that the color didn’t bleed through to the front surface. Careful bleaching of the paper enhanced the crosshatching and other fine-line details. Finally, the print was flattened and dried. 24 | Io Triumphe!
Following the disastrous steam pipe break in Bobbitt Visual Arts Center, Albion’s Art and Art History faculty quickly removed the College’s extraordinary print collection from the building, and it was eventually transferred to the Chicago Conservation Center (CCC) for restoration. Fortunately, mold damage to the collection was minimal, and the waterresistant inks were generally unaffected by heat and steam. Rather, the paper—the hundreds of different types and compositions of paper in the collection—and its restoration posed the greatest challenge, according to the CCC’s David Chandler who supervised the project. Paradoxically, removing the warping and discoloration caused by steam was a waterbased process. Most prints were soaked in de-ionized water, carefully smoothed onto cotton blotters, and press-dried with weights. Many were additionally soaked or spot-treated with alkalized water to reduce staining and discoloration while “brightening” the overall tone of the paper without affecting the ink. Gore-Tex membranes (which allow molecular control of hydration) and vacuum tables were used to conserve pieces in which ink on the back threatened the image on the front. The CCC additionally addressed damage caused by the steaming of hinges, tapes, mats, and other materials attached to some prints. —Jake Weber
P e r spec t ! ves
How Are We Doing? In January, I had the opportunity to chat with the members of Albion’s Alumni Association Board of Directors about Io Triumphe! and how well it is serving the needs of our readers—alumni, parents, and friends. Their helpful suggestions will be reflected in our pages as we refine future editions. This current issue represents the completion of three years in our new full-color magazine format, and it seems a good time to take stock and find out what’s working well and what’s not. As ever, our goal is to inform Albion’s supporters about recent developments on campus and to celebrate the remarkable achievements of students, faculty, staff, and alumni. As we look ahead, we hope we can continue to engage you in the life of the College. (Please also see the message on the next page from Doug Shepherd, ’98, Alumni Association president, on new directions for the Association’s Board of Directors. They too plan to reach out and involve you more fully with Albion through a variety of new initiatives.)
Our Look We’ve heard from many of you that our move to a color magazine format has been greatly appreciated. We’d like to know your opinions about our use of photography and other graphics as well as our overall presentation. Do the writing and design work well together?
Our Organization Is our organization of feature stories and specialized departments logical? In the fall edition, we moved the Alumni Association News section toward the center of the publication to give it more prominence—a reflection of our desire to engage more of you in alumni programs both on and off campus. If you have other thoughts about how to make it easy for you to find the information you’re looking for, please let me know.
Our Content We work hard to identify stories that you will find both informative and entertaining. Editions over the past three years have covered an array of topics: the perspectives of the Baby Boomers and of the Millennials, intriguing changes in our academic programs, leadership transitions. We have profiled retired faculty and alumni who are volunteers par excellence and who are innovators in their fields. What else would you like to know about Albion as it is today? Should we tell you more about how Albion people are plugged into state, national, or international issues? What perspectives may have been missing from our coverage? The members of the alumni board said they’d like to see more on Albion’s history, especially in photos. Would you agree? We realize our readers are busy, and that when you do have time to read you have many choices vying for your attention. How should we present our content to ensure quick readership? At the same time, are we giving you enough meaningful information?
As we complete our third year of publication in our new magazine format, please tell us what you like and what you don’t.
Our Format Online media continue to grow in popularity. The alumni board and I discussed the merits of our print and online formats. Printing and mailing each edition of Io Triumphe! represents a substantial investment for the College. Do you read Io Triumphe! online and does that format work for you? Would you miss the print edition if it were discontinued in favor of an online-only format? Please let us know your preferences. We encourage you to tell us what you’re thinking. Your opinions do matter! Please use the postage-paid reply card in this issue to send us your feedback or answer questions online at: www.albion.edu/ iotriumphe/survey . Sarah Briggs, Editor E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org Telephone: 517/629-0244
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A l u m n ! A ssoc ! at ! o n News Admission/Recruiting Committee
Y O UR A LU M N ! A S S O C ! A T ! O N Gear up for Engagement! By H. Douglas Shepherd, IV, ’98 President, Alumni Association Board of Directors As president of the Albion College Alumni Association, I am pleased to report the Alumni Association is restructured and reenergized to more effectively and efficiently engage all of Albion’s alumni in assisting the College. Albion College is not immune from today’s difficult economic conditions that have ushered in new and serious challenges. Now, more than ever, it is crucial that Albion’s alumni become more engaged to support the College, each other, and Albion’s current students. The degree to which alumni are willing to contribute time, experience, and money during these challenging times will greatly influence, if not dictate, which institutions struggle and which emerge stronger, smarter, and more relevant in the competitive higher education landscape. The Alumni Association Board of Directors has accepted these challenges head on. We are more focused and more committed than ever, but the Alumni Association and the College need your help. So, here it goes. . . . What can you do for Albion? Below, please find a list of the recently created committees of the Alumni Association, contact information for the chairperson, and a summary of current initiatives. If you are able to contribute your valuable time, expertise, or ideas to any of these committee initiatives, please contact the chairperson or myself (email@example.com). To see a complete roster for the Board of Directors, go to: www. albion.edu/alumni/alumni_board.asp .
Off-Campus Committee Chairperson: Herb Lentz, ’00 (firstname.lastname@example.org) This committee’s primary initiative is launching geographically specific alumni chapters to provide social, networking, and volunteering opportunities to Albion alumni. Currently, pilot chapters are forming in the Detroit and Grand Rapids areas. After these chapters become sustainable, self-governing, and active, this committee will create a framework for future chapters (for example, in Chicago, northern Michigan, and other areas with active alumni).
On-Campus Committee Chairperson: Wanda Read Bartlett, ’60 (email@example.com) To make the Alumni Association’s presence more visible on campus, this committee is developing initiatives that include organizing and staffing an alumni welcome center during Homecoming, as well as a “family friendly” activity tent at the Homecoming football game. The committee has also discussed increasing the alumni presence at commencement.
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Chairperson: Keith Roberts, ’81 (firstname.lastname@example.org) In cooperation with the Admission Office, this committee is dedicated to mobilizing and organizing the alumni to assist the admission staff with targeted geographic, major, and “area of interest” recruiting initiatives.
Communications Committee Chairperson: Elsie Hansen Misner, ’56 (email@example.com) This committee is improving the Alumni Association’s means of communication, including focusing on providing valuable and timely information in the Io Triumphe! and on the College’s Web site. Other initiatives may include utilizing popular networking sites, such as Facebook and LinkedIn, to communicate with alumni.
Career Development Committee Chairperson: Bethany Bierlein Prime, ’07 (firstname.lastname@example.org) In tandem with the Career Development Office, this committee is launching a pilot program called “Dialogue Days,” which will connect alumni and Albion College seniors, providing an opportunity to ask questions about professions of interest.
Fundraising/Scholarship Committee Chairperson: Cheryl Henderson Almeda, ’91 (email@example.com) Working closely with the Office of Institutional Advancement, this committee offers an alumni perspective on the most effective fundraising campaigns and methods. Also, this committee is examining ways that the alumni can assist the College in specific fundraising efforts.
Alumni Awards Committee Chairperson: Rick Neumann, ’67 (firstname.lastname@example.org) From hundreds of candidates, this committee recommends a slate of nominees to the Board of Directors for the Distinguished Alumni Award. This committee is currently reviewing the award structure to determine whether changes are needed—for instance, creating a Distinguished Young Alumni Award and bestowing Honorary Alumni status. It is also considering whether the time and location of the Alumni Award Ceremony should be changed.
Nominating Committee Chairperson: Glenna Vander Meer Paukstis, ’59 (email@example.com) This committee reviews the current composition of the Alumni Association Board of Directors and brings forth candidates to fill openings. This committee is responsible for ensuring diversity (for example, age, ethnicity, background, and geographic location) on the board so as to best represent the entire alumni constituency. As always, a financial contribution to the Albion College Annual Fund is a welcome and crucial means for alumni to give back to the College. The Albion College Alumni Association Board of Directors takes very seriously its responsibility as the eyes, ears, and voice for the alumni. To that end, we encourage you to communicate any concerns you have or suggestions for how we—the board or the alumni in general—can better serve the College, its students, and our fellow alumni. Io Triumphe!
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Math Magic: Learning Math Skills Made Easy and Fun
Going to Boston
Use common household items to teach counting and concepts of less and more. Fill a set of 10 bowls with similar objects such as candies, beads, or other easily manipulated items in quantities from 1-10. After counting how many objects are in each bowl, write down the total for each on slips of paper. Then do a visual check of each bowl to see which contains the most objects and how each bowl compares to the one next to it. Relate that to the written number. This same activity can also be used to show “What number comes next?”
Learning to use units of measure turns into fun with this activity. Identify objects that can become a simple “ruler”—paper clips, pencils, combs, etc. Then hunt around the house to find items to measure. For instance, “find an object that is three pencils long” or one that is “as long as your favorite book.” Smaller children might like to use their bodies as measuring devices, so the idea would be to find something “as high as your waist” or “three big steps long.”
“Going to Boston” is a three-die game that’s easy to learn. Roll three dice, keeping the largest number. Roll the two that remain and keep the larger. Roll the last die and add the three numbers together to determine your score. After five rounds, the highest total sum is the winner. For older children, multiply the numbers instead of adding them, or increase the number of sides on the dice.
Our thanks to Mark Bollman, associate professor of mathematics, for his help with this edition’s activities and Web sources.
Brainteasers, Puzzles, and Riddles http://kids.niehs.nih.gov/braint.htm http://www.brainbashers.com/puzzles.asp And more . . . http://www.apples4theteacher.com/math.html http://www.mathplayground.com/
pennies, nickels, dimes, and quarters? 2. Using four 7’s and a 1 with the standard arithmetic operations, write an expression equal to 100. 3. The day before yesterday I was 25, and the next year I will be 28. This is true only one day in a year. When was I born?
Printable Math Activities http://www.familyeducation.com/home/
1. How many ways can you make change for a dollar, using
1. 242. (292 if you also allow half dollars.)
Dice Games http://homepage.ntlworld.com/dice-play/GamesFamily.htm http://www.activityvillage.co.uk/dice_games.htm
2. 100 = 177-77 or 100 = (7+7)x(7+(1/7)).
Online/Interactive Math Activities
3. December 31. (This conversation takes place on January 1.)
Winter-Spring 2008-09 | 41
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International Information Exchange Hisashi Onari (standing), a professor from Japanâ€™s Waseda University, visited Albion for four weeks earlier this semester. He taught an economics and management seminar on business process reengineering and, over spring break, traveled with students and faculty to several Midwest consulting and manufacturing firms. Another Waseda University professor, Yusuke Morita, worked with Education Department students and faculty this semester on using educational technology.
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