T h e A l u m n i M a g a z i n e o f Wa r r e n W i l s o n C o l l e g e
An Interview with
WARREN WILSON COLLEGE
Alumni Office P.O. Box 9000 Asheville NC 28815-9000 828.771.2046
Contributing Writer Ben Anderson
Alumni Director Jonathan Hettrick ’88
Designer Martha Smith
Contributors Tracy Bleeker Chris Bunyan ‘08 J. Clarkson ’95 Elizabeth Crenshaw ‘07 Allison Jarrett ‘09 Julie Lehman Kimberly Miller ‘07 Ricky Ochilo ‘08 Sally Weldon Nick Wilson ’07 Alumni Relations Crew
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PRESIDENT’S MESSAGE AROUND CAMPUS AND BEYOND
ALUMNI BOARD 2006-2007
DIRECTOR OF MULTICULTURAL AFFAIRS • RON HUNT TO LEAD BOARD OF TRUSTEES • DR. ARTHUR M. BANNERMAN
MEMORIAL LEADERSHIP AWARD ESTABLISHED • LET THERE BE LIGHT! AND MUSIC! AND BATHROOMS! • 2007 HAR-
Sue Carico Hartwyk 1966
WOOD-COLE LECTURE • SUSTAINABILITY DEVELOPMENT CONFERENCE HELD ON CAMPUS • PRESIDENT PFEIFFER
CARLA SUTHERLAND: IN HER OWN WORDS • JOHN HUIE RECEIVES STATE HONOR • RODNEY LYTLE ‘73 NAMED
SIGNS LETTER OF INTENT FOR CLIMATE COMMITMENT • CARTER DELIVERS CALL TO ACTION AT 2007 COMMENCE-
MENT • WWC GENERATES GREEN POWER FOR THE GRID AND DOLLARS FOR OUTREACH • HANK STEINBRECHER
Faris A. Ashkar 1972
LEADS VISIONING FOR WWC ATHLETICS • INVITATION TO INTEGRATE MADE HISTORY
Secretary Susanna M. Chewning 1987
FACULTY & STAFF NEWS
IN DEPTH WITH ”HER DEEPNESS”—AN INTERVIEW WITH SYLVIA EARLE
DREW STEPHENS ‘88 SPREADS THE GIS GOSPEL, ONE OCEAN AT A TIME
LOOKING BACK: OLD MAIN, THE FIRST BUILDING CONSTRUCTED ON CAMPUS
Past President James M. Dedman 1965
Class of 2007 Suzanne Daley 1977 David B. Grist 1975 James Hilliard 1966 Ruth M. Roberts 1985 John Snider 1991 Amanda B. Styles 2000
Class of 2008 Vicki (Vowell) Catalano 1996 Johnelle Causwell 2003 Melissa Thomas Davis 1971 Stacie Greco 1999 Michael Robert Washel 1972 Frances Moffit Whitfield 1955
Class of 2009 Harry L. Atkins 1956 Britta J. Dedrick 1993 Mary A. Elfner 1985 Susan Harriot 1995 A. Eugene Hileman 1956 Peter C. Kenny 1982 James W. Oiler 1966
ON THE COVER: At habitat’s hemispheric window, Sylvia Earle shows algae to an engineer. Photo by Bates Littlehales
Graduating Class Rep. Timothy Manney 2006
Owl & Spade (ISSN: 202-707-4111) is published twice a year (winter, summer) by the staff of Warren Wilson College. Address changes and distribution issues should be sent to firstname.lastname@example.org or Jon Hettrick, CPO 6376, Warren Wilson College, PO Box 9000, Asheville, NC 28815.
Message from the President
ummer brings a changing pattern to life at the College. Because I started my presidency last July, I’ve already experienced a Warren Wilson summer and eagerly await what’s ahead in the next few months —for example, great food at the Swannanoa School of Culinary Arts, stirring music at The Swannanoa Gathering and Swannanoa Chamber Music Festival, and fine readings during the summer residency of our famed MFA program. Many events, as well as visits by potential students and their families, give a special flavor to summer on our campus in the mountains. The summer season also provides an opportunity to take a deep breath and prepare for the new academic year ahead. For starters, our Facilities Management crews need every bit of time they have to maintain the physical plant and oversee completion of many projects, such as the renovation of Jensen. Having recently toured a few dormitories, I now have a better idea of the effort our crews must expend to make the plant “look new” for returning students in August. And, of course, our faculty use summer months to prepare new courses, to retool others, to conduct research that relates to their teaching, and generally to recharge their batteries. Another goal for the summer ahead involves the Administrative Council, which comprises the four deans and three vice presidents who report to me. The Administrative Council and I will be devoting four entire days in July for planning. A few of our tasks include (a) reviewing the threeyear Action Plan we developed this past year, (b) beginning our budget process earlier than usual to seek additional savings and connect with the planning process, and (c) outlining priorities for a comprehensive capital campaign that will begin in the near future. Planning for our upcoming campaign will be enhanced by the recent hiring of Sallie-Grace Tate as our new Vice President for Advancement. Sallie-Grace now is finishing her job as Senior Director of Development at the Iowa State University Foundation and will start here at the end of July, just in time for a two-day Administrative Council planning retreat. A native of Burlington, North Carolina, and a graduate of UNC Chapel Hill, Sallie-Grace comes to us with much experience in the field. We are excited about the leadership she’ll provide the office formerly called College Relations and now to be called Advancement. As my first year winds down, I remain more enthusiastic than ever about the future of Warren Wilson College and the importance of its mission. My thanks to all of you for the support you have given to this fine college and to me.
President Warren Wilson College
added planned giving; major gifts; the scholarship program, which includes the annual luncheon; and the Weekend @ WWC, which brings alums to campus every summer. Success at Warren Wilson: I’d have to say my biggest success was the Centennial Campaign. We had a goal of $15 million. The College had never had a comprehensive campaign that included the capital, endowment and annual funds. We had two wonderful cochairs on the board of trustees, Hugh Verner and Mimi Cecil, and then-president Doug Orr, who worked very hard to accomplish almost double the goal. We funded all the goals for the campaign, so it was a huge success.
Carla Sutherland: In her own words The Office of College Relations at Warren Wilson has grown tremendously under the leadership of Vice President for College Relations Carla Sutherland, who retired in June. Sutherland came to Warren Wilson in 1991 from Cornell University where she was the campaign manager and director of athletic public affairs. In the 1990s Sutherland directed a $15 million Centennial Campaign —Warren Wilson’s first comprehensive capital campaign—that easily surpassed its goal with a total of $27.3 million raised. Beginning in 2001 she directed the President’s Initiatives Campaign that concluded in 2004 with $11.7 million raised, $1.7 million more than the $10 million goal. In 2005 she was named the Outstanding Fundraising Executive by the Western North Carolina Chapter of the Association of Fundraising Professionals and honored at the AFP National Philanthropy Day Luncheon. Her AFP colleagues say: “Her personal and hands-on leadership style has taught and encouraged her staff to succeed. Anyone who meets Carla is enriched by her warmth, genuine interest in people and in her humble approach to her work. She cares deeply and works hard without ever losing her sense of humor.” A proud native of Texas, she received bachelor’s and master’s degrees from Sam Houston State University in Huntsville, Texas. Following, Carla speaks for herself. Growth of College Relations: When I came in, we had four positions in College Relations. Since then, the department has grown to eleven employees. I’ve also been lucky to have two great volunteers, Jane Weis and David Beebe, who have been helping out for a long time. In terms of programs, among others, we’ve
Regrets: I came here because I knew I’d have the opportunity to work with students, and I’ve had some wonderful relationships with students, mainly those who have worked in this office. The only regret I have is that I did not have more time on campus to be involved with more students. But I have thoroughly enjoyed my career at Warren Wilson—it’s the highlight of my life. On life after Warren Wilson: I’ve promised myself I’m going to do nothing but take care of myself. This comes from three and a half years ago when I dealt with difficult decisions in going through cancer—that changed a lot. I plan to do things that I haven’t had time to do with this job. I’ve got scuba diving trips planned, golf two or three times a week and some projects at my home that have been on hold. Parting words: It’s been a wonderful run. I believe in this little College, and there are wonderful, bright, creative students here. The administration, faculty and staff—the whole community is wonderful, and I have to thank them. I don’t believe you get the support from other institutions the way I have from this community that put their arms around me and helped me through a very difficult time. I’ll never forget those folks for that. So good luck. I’m your biggest supporter out there.
John Huie receives state honor John Huie, founder and former director of the College’s Environmental Leadership Center, was selected by Gov. Michael F. Easley to receive the Order of the Long Leaf Pine, the highest civilian honor in North Carolina. The distinction is granted to “outstanding North Carolinians who have a proven record of service to the state.” Doug Orr, president emeritus of Warren Wilson College and himself a 2006 recipient of the award, nominated Huie for the honor. Since its founding in 1995 under Huie’s guidance, the ELC has launched numerous programs that offer Warren Wilson students opportunities to learn, support the environment, and contribute to their community. Among these are the EcoTeam, in which students have developed a series of environmental lessons for third graders in Buncombe County and beyond; and an internship program for Warren Wilson students that gives them opportunities with some of the nation’s most respected environmental organizations. Before coming to Warren Wilson, Huie was executive director of North Carolina Outward Bound for 17 years. He left the College at the end of June to focus on his work as an educational consultant with John Huie Consulting.
OWL & SPADE
Dr. Arthur M. Bannerman Memorial Leadership Award established By J. Clarkson ’95 For many first-year students, college can seem like a foreign country. When Ki Sub Joung came to Warren Wilson in 1954, it was just that. Coming from Korea to attend the junior college, he had to adjust to a different language and culture. He found support and encouragement from Dr. Bannerman, the first president of Warren Wilson College. “Early in my freshman year Dr. Bannerman took me and several other students to speak to a civic club,” Joung remembers. “The audience was particularly interested in my experiences growing up in Korea during the Korean War, which had ended the previous year. Subsequently, Dr. Bannerman called on me many times to speak to civic clubs, and that’s how I got to know him personally,” Joung said. After two years at Warren Wilson, Joung enrolled at Lafayette College, Dr. Bannerman’s alma mater. Dr. Bannerman’s fraternity brother, Ralph Cooper Hutchison, was then president of Lafayette, a small college in Easton, Pennsylvania. Based on Dr. Bannerman’s recommendation, Joung received a full-tuition scholarship. In the summer of 1957, mutual friends introduced Joung to Myung Cho Ha ’58, who was spending her summer break from Warren Wilson on a family farm outside of Harrisburg, Pennsylvania. Although the two had attended Warren Wilson in different years, they had both seen Dr. Bannerman’s strong imprint on the College. “Dr. Bannerman had the vision to include different ethnic groups and foreign students in the life of the College. He had a vision for where Warren Wilson should go and how it could contribute to society. He was able to translate that vision into achievable goals and persuade others to adopt them as common goals. Whether talking to students or meeting with church and
Rodney Lytle ’73 named Director of Multicultural Affairs In late January, President Pfeiffer announced that Rodney Lytle, a 1973 graduate and long-time employee of the College, would serve as the director of multicultural affairs beginning July 1. Lytle began working for the College in 1973 and was appointed to the parttime position of multicultural mentor in 2003. His new position as director of multicultural affairs will involve faculty, staff and student recruitment; student programs; alumni relations and fundraising; and community relations. “My hope is to better represent efforts for students, staff and faculty with a continual focus on diversity,” Lytle said. He added that his time as building services supervisor and popular head of the heavy duty crew has been memorable because of the many wonderful people he has worked with. “I have a motto,” he says: “Once Heavy Duty, always Heavy Duty.”
community leaders, he was highly effective. His actions showed a great deal of modesty, and yet you knew he was a leader,” Joung says. Joung and Ha married and pursued further education; he received a master’s degree in civil engineering from Lehigh and she earned a bachelor’s degree in pharmacy from Philadelphia College of Pharmacy and Science. They both continued their studies at the University of Wisconsin where he earned a doctorate in engineering mechanics and she a master’s in pharmacy. Dr. Joung also earned his MBA from the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee. Throughout their careers in industry, academic administration, and pharmacy, Dr. and Mrs. Joung have drawn on the friendship and leadership lessons learned from Dr. Bannerman. They have sought to pass these lessons on to students, colleagues and their children. The message has not been lost. To celebrate their father’s 70th birthday and their parents’ 45th wedding anniversary, and to recognize the importance of Warren Wilson and Dr. Bannerman in the lives of their parents, the three Joung children, two sons and a daughter, and their families have joined with their parents to establish the Dr. Arthur M. Bannerman Memorial Leadership Award. This award provides a scholarship to a rising senior who has demonstrated the leadership qualities exemplified by Dr. Bannerman. The Joung family sees this scholarship as an opportunity to celebrate the significant milestones in the lives of their parents. “This is something my parents had always wanted to do,” says J. Kenneth Joung. “We have heard about Warren Wilson College all of our lives, and we are honored to contribute to this important gift.”
Ron Hunt to lead Board of Trustees Ronald F. Hunt of Asheville has been elected chair of the Warren Wilson College Board of Trustees. He succeeds fellow Asheville resident Joel B. Adams, who has been board chair since 2003. Hunt, a legal consultant and private investor, has served on the board for the past four years and been vice chair since 2005. He chaired the presidential search committee that brought Sandy Pfeiffer to Warren Wilson as its sixth president. “Joel Adams has provided outstanding leadership as board chair, and we look forward to his continuing participation as a trustee. The ideal person to continue Joel’s work as chair is Ron Hunt. Ron’s leadership experience, knowledge of higher education, and deep commitment to Warren Wilson make him the perfect choice. I look forward to being his partner in leading this fine College,” Pfeiffer said. Hunt was executive vice president and general counsel of the Student Loan Marketing Association from 1978-1990. He formerly was secretary of the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission.
Let there be light! and music! and bathrooms! By Rev. Steve Runholt In June 2007 the Warren Wilson Presbyterian Church and College Chapel agreed to undertake several renovations to the chapel building. The first of two renovation stages is centered on installing improved lighting in the sanctuary and cooling the building in the summer. Currently, the Chapel roof is not insulated, rendering the sanctuary uncomfortably hot from May into September. Sunday morning services, weddings and College orientation events are all adversely affected. Engineers estimate that adding insulation and a small exhaust ridge to the roof will reduce the heat gain in the sanctuary from some 56,000 BTUs per hour to just under 5,500 BTUs per hour. This passive system is in keeping with the College’s commitment to “green” improvements, as it does not depend on air-conditioning units, fans, or other energy-consuming inputs. While the roof is off, new wiring and improved light fixtures will be installed, bringing new light to the Chapel for the first time since it was completed in 1964. Charlie Sappenfield, the architect who designed the chapel, favors these improvements, as his original plans for lighting in the sanctuary could not be realized at the time. When the new roof is installed, the College and congregation have agreed to replace the current wood shakes with architectural-grade shingles. While this is a significant aesthetic change, architectural shingles represent a cost savings of more than $40,000 over shakes, and their estimated life span is 20-30 years longer. Every effort will be made to match the shade of shingles to the color of the building. The second stage of the renovations will focus on expanding the restrooms and improving handicapped accessibility throughout the building. The College and the congregation will share equally in the cost of these two stages, which total approximately $300,000. The church congregation has opted to raise 10% over its share of the cost, which will be devoted to various benevolent causes beginning with a $2,500 donation in support of the Vanautu Presbyterian Church—a project brought to their attention by Matt Drury ’01 (see profile on page 26). More recently, the congregation also opted, at its own expense, to undertake muchneeded repairs and improvements to the Chapel organ, which are estimated to cost $150,000. On the Web:
2007 Harwood-Cole Lecture—Save the date Randall Kenan, author of Walking on Water: Black American Lives at the Turn of the Twenty-First Century, will speak at the Harwood-Cole Lecture on November 3. On the Web:
Sustainable Development Conference held on campus Warren Wilson College held its first Sustainable Development Conference on June 20. Conference speakers highlighted technologies appropriate for the mountain region that work to achieve sustainable development. The conference was the vision of Warren Wilson trustee Robert Deutsch and was planned by the Environmental Leadership Center’s Director of Community Outreach, Phillip Ray Gibson. “The purpose of the conference is to transfer our knowledge, experiences, and data to develop the community sustainably in ways that suit the mountain region,” Deutsch said. The conference targeted general contractors, landscape architects, grading operators, developers, lawyers, realtors, administrators, and facility managers in search of green ways to build in the mountain region. Robert Kee, Vice President of Bank of America, delivered the keynote address. Bank of America announced in March 2007 a $20 billion initiative to support the growth of environmentally sustainable business activity to address global climate change. Classes on green development, renewable energy, green marketing, and environmental regulations were available throughout the day, and were taught by guest teachers representing businesses, nonprofit organizations, and local government. The conference was organized by a steering committee comprised of representatives from the Asheville Board of Realtors, the Asheville Home Builders Association, the Council of Independent Business Owners, Civil Design Concepts, Building Future Builders, Kimmel and Associates, the WNC Green Building Council, Equinox Environmental, the Henderson County Council on Aging and the Community Foundation of WNC. The second annual conference is currently being planned for summer 2008. For more information, contact Phillip Ray Gibson at 828.771.3781.
President Pfeiffer signs letter of intent for climate commitment College President Sandy Pfeiffer has signed a letter of intent for the American College and University Presidents Climate Commitment, an initiative modeled after the U.S. Mayors Climate Protection Agreement. The climate commitment is an effort to make campuses more sustainable and to help address global warming. Presidents and chancellors make institutional pledges to reduce and eventually neutralize greenhouse gas emissions on their campuses. “Warren Wilson College has been a national leader for some time in sustainable facilities and practices,” Pfeiffer said, “and we’re glad to be among the schools committing to signing this vitally important agreement.” Signers of the commitment agree to take several steps in pursuit of climate neutrality, obligating their schools to work toward having little or no effect on the Earth’s climate. Participating institutions are required to make an action plan, emissions inventory and progress reports available to the public through the Association for the Advancement of Sustainability in Higher Education. On the Web:
www.citizen-times.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=200770529090 presidentsclimatecommitment.org OWL & SPADE
Majora Carter delivers call to action at 2007 Commencement
WWC generates green power for the grid and dollars for outreach Warren Wilson’s experiment with generating electricity by harnessing the power of the sun took a step forward in the spring. For several years, the College has used photovoltaic (PV) cells to generate power to charge its electric cart fleet and supply the Facilities Management offices and shops. During the past year, however, the entire campus’s electric system went green through the purchase of credits from Sterling Plant (see Summer 2006 Owl & Spade). At the same time, the maker of the College’s PV cells offered to replace the original array because of faulty manufacturing. The College then had to make a decision about what direction to take with its on-campus electricity generation. With an investment of approximately $25,000, the College could become an energy producer, selling electricity back to the grid.
“You guys will be in my life forever.” Elizabeth “Bess” Schaefer, Class of ’07, was hardly alone in having tears flow as she spoke those words as senior class speaker at the 2007 Commencement on May 19. The same promise likely could be made to Warren Wilson newcomer Majora Carter, whose first commencement address was a rousing speech that deeply connected with the large crowd spilling beyond Sunderland Lawn. Carter, founder and executive director of Sustainable South Bronx and co-host of “The Green” on the Sundance Channel, spoke just before 136 WWC graduates received their bachelor’s degrees from President Sandy Pfeiffer and Dean John Casey. Her address on a brilliant spring morning skipped platitudes in favor of a strong call to action to undo the status quo. “We need leaders who are not ashamed to stand up and say that we are not willing to leave this world in the same sorry condition as the one we created,” said Carter, one of the nation’s leading voices —and doers—of environmental justice. “We as a culture have been led to believe that in order to succeed we have to tear things down, and that it is OK to tear people down along with them. “But YOU know that building a sustainable world is not only necessary, it is possible—and in our lifetime.” Carter’s commencement address aired on C-SPAN June 1. During the College’s Honors and Awards Ceremony, held the evening before graduation, graduating seniors Wade Hawkins and Greg Traymar received the top student awards. Hawkins, a social work major from Atlanta, won the Alton F. Pfaff Award, which goes to the graduating senior who most clearly exemplifies qualities of the ideal student. Traymar, an environmental studies major from Pittsburgh, received the Algernon Sydney Sullivan Award, presented to a graduating senior in recognition of spiritual qualities applied to daily living. The awards for Teaching Excellence went to Psychology Professor Bob Swoap (faculty) and Assistant College Press Manager Patricia Willever (staff). Her recognition kept the award in the family, as her husband, Bruce Willever (landscaping supervisor), received the staff award in 2006. SUMMER 2007
At the same time, Shelly Eatherly, a representative of the Charles and Betty Saunders Foundation, approached the College with an offer to support activities that would bring the campus’s environmental expertise into the wider community. Through the process of exploring the donors’ goals and the College’s goals, there was a match in the solar array project. Rather than placing the gift into an endowed fund, which would return roughly $1,125, or 4.5% of the original amount, the foundation partnered with the College to renovate the solar array and equip it to send electricity back to the grid. The end result will be an annual income of $3,000 to $4,000, which will be used to support campus environmental outreach. Warren Wilson’s 104 PV solar panels make up the largest single array in Western North Carolina.
Hank Steinbrecher leads visioning for WWC athletics Hank Steinbrecher’s impact on Warren Wilson and its athletic programs is legendary. In the 1970s, Steinbrecher led the Owls to national prominence in men’s soccer and raised the bar for all sports at the College. He went on to a successful career in sports marketing and as secretary general for the U.S. Soccer Federation. The legend continued in January as Steinbrecher returned to campus for a two-day strategic planning session. Drawing on his experiences in higher education, corporate marketing, and international sports competition, Steinbrecher led a group of students, staff, administrators, trustees, alumni and friends through a process to articulate a vision and mission for the department of athletics and adventure sports. “This strategic planning process is a foundation that will provide us with structure and strength for the hard and rewarding work ahead. We owe Hank Steinbrecher our gratitude,” said College Athletic Director Stacey Enos. The group has continued its work by forming task forces; meeting in person, online and in conference calls; and planning ways for the College to meet its vision for athletics with clear goals and action steps. “As we grow from here, this process and the plan form the backbone of where we will go,” Enos said. Steps will be taken in the fall to address goals outlined in the strategic plan.
Invitation to integrate made history By Margaret Lillard
There is no monument to Alma Shippy. No plaque describes how, in 1952, the shy teenager packed a bag of clothes, caught a ride in a friend’s pickup truck and walked into history on the campus of Warren Wilson Junior College. It is an obscure vignette in civil rights history. Shippy not only was Warren Wilson’s first black student, but one of the few to attend any segregated college or junior college by invitation—and not by court order and armed escort. A core of Shippy’s family and friends—some of whom paved his way and some whose path was paved by him—want wider attention for what they see as a bright moment of brotherhood in one of the South’s darkest eras. “There were no dogs, no guns. He didn’t have to be shot at. There was nobody that was beaten up, nobody died because he came here,” says Rodney Lytle, a 1973 Warren Wilson graduate (now the College’s director of multicultural affairs) “And that—that story— that is beautiful!” And it did not happen by chance.
Shippy’s presence was the culmination of a decade of work by leaders of Warren H. Wilson Vocational Junior College and Associated Schools, created in 1942 from the merger and expansion of two high schools run by the Presbyterian Church. Arthur Bannerman, born in Africa to Presbyterian missionaries, was named the school’s new president. With new Dean Henry Jensen, he opened the school’s doors to a variety of outsiders, starting with two Japanese-American girls from an internment camp in Arizona. They were missionaries, says Warren Wilson graduate Marvin Lail, with a philosophy of “not just telling you but showing you.” Bannerman began writing to churchconnected schools for blacks, seeking a student who might want to come to Warren Wilson. It was not until the spring
Editor’s note: This story was released by the Associated Press in late February 2007, as part of their Black History Month coverage.
of 1952 that the men learned of Alma Shippy, a 17-year-old who had befriended some Warren Wilson students in local churches where he helped teach Sunday school and Bible classes. Lail, then 16 years old, was deputized to walk across the Swannanoa Valley to Buckeye Cove—“truly on the other side of the tracks”—where Shippy lived with his grandmother, Ludie White. He invited Shippy to speak at the campus evening prayer service. Jensen watched Shippy’s brief address, and afterward joined Lail in asking whether he might like to attend Warren Wilson. Then, as now, students help with their expenses by working at the school. Shippy, who had no money for college, said yes. “I think he was really taken aback that white men or peers—I was just a boy— would come and invite him to a white college,” Lail said. There was a hurdle: The college had one dormitory for male students and Shippy
would have to live there. Jensen called a meeting of the 55 Sunderland Hall residents. Jensen “was a very smart man and was a good speaker and (said), ‘We’re going to integrate the college and we want it to be sooner rather than later, because it’s coming down the road and everything will be integrated,’” Lail recalled. Listening was Billy Edd Wheeler, about to start his final year at Warren Wilson. He was brilliant and athletic, a popular campus leader who later became an award-winning country music songwriter. But he knew what it meant to be a misfit —born poor and illegitimate in a West Virginia coal camp and sent to Warren Wilson four years earlier to appease an unloving stepfather. The question of accepting this stranger struck at his heart. “I had that ingrained in me, that I could never be better than anybody else,” Wheeler said. “I think that was part of it, being able to empathize.” OWL & SPADE
Lail, too, was moved by a childhood spent in the company of black sharecroppers on his family’s farm who cared for him as his mother began a slide into mental illness. “They were very good to me, fed me. I thought, ‘Why do we treat these people so bad?’” he said. “I thought, ‘This should be changed.’” The vote was 54-1 to accept Shippy. He began classes at Warren Wilson Junior College in the fall of 1952. After the first few days, his presence drew little attention on campus that already housed students from China, Cuba, Europe and South America, Wheeler said. “It sort of settled into just a routine of life and you didn’t think much about it,” Wheeler said. “But for the people here in the valley, it was a pretty big deal.” At night, the college phone rang through to Bannerman’s home. His 11-year-old daughter, Mary—now Wheeler’s wife —fielded a couple of calls offering the traditional slur for whites who befriended blacks. It was “scary, and proud,” she recalled. “I can wear that badge of honor.” Classmates did, too. Shippy later told the Asheville Citizen-Times about going to an ice cream parlor in the Swannanoa community with a group of students. “They sat me in the middle of the booth and that just did not work,” he recalled in a 1994 interview. “(The manager) said, ‘We can’t serve you. You can get it to go and take it outside.’ I had a hard time convincing the students not to tear up the place.” Instead, they all left. The college tried to downplay Shippy’s presence. Bannerman was friends with the editor of the Asheville newspaper and asked him to keep it quiet “for safety, for Alma’s safety and the students’ safety,” Mary Bannerman Wheeler said. The first newspaper story about the school’s integration appeared in September 1955. By then, Warren Wilson had five black students and its first black graduate, SUMMER 2007
Georgia Powell, who had earned her associate’s degree that spring. And by then, Shippy was long gone; he left after one year, to make some money for his family, his brother Michael said. He joined the Army, then moved to Indiana, where he married and fathered two girls. Except for occasional correspondence with a few friends, Shippy vanished from Warren Wilson life until 1987. Then, his marriage over, he returned to the Swannanoa Valley to care for his aging grandmother, going to work at a state-run, long-term care facility. He again became active in his church and enthusiastically backed local youth sports teams, sitting behind the umpire at Little League games so he could cheer for both sides. That’s where Rodney Lytle first encountered the stranger who had a silent, but major impact on his life. A friend nudged him and pointed to Shippy. “He’s one of you,” she said. Lytle was confused. He had two cousins who attended Warren Wilson in 1959 and knew blacks had gone there for years, well before it became a four-year college in 1967, well before he met his wife there, earned his degree, got his job. But he had never seen this older man or heard the name Alma Shippy. He walked over and struck up a conversation, “and from that moment on we were friends.” Lytle became Shippy’s champion, determined not only to commemorate his accomplishment, but to help him live a more comfortable life. Though Warren Wilson had long required students to complete service projects to graduate, no one had done anything to help its first black alumnus. A pair of students organized a crew to fix Shippy’s house. In 1994, the college included Shippy in the centennial celebration of its original farm school. And eight years later, on the 50th anniversary of his enrollment, the board of trustees passed a proclamation honoring Shippy, Bannerman, Lail, Jensen and all those involved.
Shippy had prepared a three-page speech, but when he stood to read it, the pages rattled in his shaking hands, Lytle said. He took his seat again and began to cry. “I can’t say anything,” he told Lytle. “I’m overwhelmed.” In early December, his friends gathered once more, crowding into the college chapel for a memorial service, a few days after Shippy’s death at 72. They are determined that it will not be the last time the school marks his memory. One former classmate has proposed a scholarship in Shippy’s name. Shippy’s family, Lytle and other college officials are discussing a permanent memorial —a marker, or perhaps a tree outside Sunderland Hall—for Shippy and all those who welcomed him into their lives not because of a court order, but as a matter of fairness and faith. “This group of people at Warren Wilson College was open-minded and willing to accept Alma not as a colored guy, like they called us then,” Michael Shippy said. “They accepted him as a man.”
Contribute to the
Legacy of Alma Shippy Alma’s life and his incredible contribution to Warren Wilson College are being remembered with the establishment of the Alma Shippy Memorial Scholarship endowment. This endowment will provide financial aid to students who bring diversity to the Warren Wilson campus. An anonymous donor has offered to match all gifts to the scholarship until the fund reaches a minimum level of $25,000, so your gift will go twice as far. For more information, contact... J. Clarkson ’95, CFRE, at 828.771.3756 or email@example.com. Gifts may be mailed to CPO 6376, PO Box 9000, Asheville, NC 28815.
Faculty&Staff News Biotech center grant to enhance undergraduate research
Geography and global studies professor David Abernathy received a grant from UNCA’s National Environmental Modeling and Analysis Center and the UNCA engagement site of the Renaissance Computing Institute to research 3D modeling of the Swannanoa watershed. The grant includes funds for a paid student internship.
Warren Wilson College and Western Carolina University received a $62,010 grant from the North Carolina Biotechnology Center for a new light microscopy system and expanded DNA analysis equipment for undergraduate research. Directed by biology professors Paul Bartels of Warren Wilson and Sean O’Connell of Western Carolina, biology and environmental studies students will be engaged in identifying microorganisms in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park as part of the All Taxa Biodiversity Inventory (www.dlia.org/atbi).
Two papers by biology professor Paul Bartels have been accepted for publication. “An evaluation of species richness estimators for tardigrades of the Great Smoky Mountains National Park, TN and NC, USA,” will appear in the journal Hydrobiologia; “ ‘Smoky Bears’— Tardigrades of the Great Smoky Mountains National Park” will appear in Southeastern Naturalist.
Bartels and a team of 20 undergraduates have found 70 new park records of tardigrade species over the past several years, including 14 that likely are new to science. (Tardigrades are sediment-dwelling micro invertebrates commonly known as water bears.) O’Connell, working with 160 undergraduates, has found 386 new bacterial species in the Smokies.
Chemistry professor John Brock’s article “Improved quantitative detection of 11 urinary phthalate metabolites in humans using liquid chromatography-atmospheric pressure chemical ionization tandem mass spectrometry,” published in 2003 in the Journal of Chromatography B, won the journal’s Top Cited Article 2001-2006 Award. Brock also published his 54th peerreviewed paper in the journal Toxicology.
“We’re very excited about this grant,” Bartels said. “Sean O’Connell and I have been working for several years on different organisms in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park, and our work should move forward much more rapidly now. Additionally, the microscope we are getting is a very powerful instrument that can do five types of microscopy, all in one system.” The microscope system will be housed at Warren Wilson. The DNA analysis laboratory is at Western Carolina.
Religious studies professor J. Michael Clark’s paper “Revelation/Apocalypse” was published in The Queer Bible Commentary. The Environmental Leadership Center’s Phillip Ray Gibson was selected to serve as the chair of the housing and transportation committee and member of the aging coordinating consortium (ACC) planning task force. This group is developing a livable senior-friendly community plan for Buncombe County. Gibson also joined Church Relations Director Julie Lehman to give a presentation at Trinity Presbyterian Church in Atlanta on the sustainable activities of the College. At the 2007 North Carolina Academy of Science (NCAS) annual meeting in Greenville, North Carolina, Gibson, as chair of the government advisory committee of the NCAS, served as moderator of the panel discussion on science and public policy. He organized one of 1,400 national rallies for the national Step It Up campaign
and was appointed by the Buncombe County Board of Commissioners to their environmental advisory board. Christine Hale, the 2006-2007 Joan Beebe Graduate Teaching Fellow, has four publications appearing in 2007: “Heavy Sex,” an excerpt from a memoir-in-progress forthcoming in the fall in the North Dakota Quarterly; “Virgins, Again,” a short fiction piece forthcoming this fall in Arts & Letters; “Almost Home,” a nonfiction short-short in this spring’s “Native Genius” issue of Rivendell; and “Some people need to be kicked,” flash fiction in Peal (WWC’s literary arts magazine). In addition to teaching fiction and first-year writing at Warren Wilson, she teaches a prose workshop for the Great Smokies Writing Program and returns to the Sewanee Young Writers Conference as fiction faculty this summer. A practitioner of Tibetan Buddhism, Christine was guest speaker at BE, WWC’s on-campus Buddhist fellowship, and made a trip to Tibet this summer along with other College alumni, faculty, friends and family. English professor Carol Howard is serving as an advisory editor to the journal New Perspectives on the Eighteenth Century. She also attended the annual American Society for Eighteenth-Century Studies conference in Atlanta in March. Janet Jones, North Carolina Campus Compact Vista Volunteer in the Service Learning Office, led three trips to New Orleans during the 2006-2007 academic year. Over 70 Warren Wilson students performed 3,285 hours of service on these trips, gutting and rebuilding homes in the Seventh Ward, Nineth Ward and Slidell. She has organized over a dozen presentations for the Asheville/Buncombe County community and raised funds for a Summer Youth Program in New Orleans. The Campus Compact also awarded her a grant for Global Youth Service Day. English professor Michael Matin chaired a panel titled “Anxieties and Influences in the Nineteenth Century” at the International Conference of the Society for the Study of Narrative Literature in Washington, D.C. OWL & SPADE
Faculty&Staff News Larry Modlin, vice president for business and finance, has been named president of the Asheville Breakfast Rotary Club. Outdoor leadership professor Ed Raiola contributed to and reviewed the book Outdoor Experiential Leadership: Scenarios Describing Incidents, Dilemmas, and Opportunities, published by Learning Unlimited Publications. He also presented “Sustainable practices for international adventure programming” at the 14th Annual Adventure Education conference at Western Carolina University. He and outdoor leadership professor Marty O’Keefe presented “Team development and team goal setting,” a workshop at the Southeast Regional Conference of the Association for Experiential Education held at the U.S. National Whitewater Center in Charlotte. Adjunct faculty member Marty Price has been awarded a Fulbright Senior Specialist grant to lecture in Argentina during the 2007-2008 academic year. Recipients of Fulbright Scholar awards are selected on the basis of academic or professional achievement and because they have demonstrated extraordinary leadership in their fields. Peace and justice studies professor Paul Magnarella contributed a chapter titled “The Black Panther Party’s Confrontation with Ethnicity, Race and Class,” to the book The Politics of Ethnicity and National Identity. Magnarella contributed the chapter “The Hutu-Tutsi Conflict in Rwanda,” in the book Perspectives on Contemporary Ethnic Conflict, published by Lexington Books. During October, November and December 2006, Oxford University Press ranked his article “The Background and Causes of the Genocide in Rwanda” (2005) first among the 50 most frequently read articles in its Journal of International Criminal Justice. The World Affairs Council, a citizens’ organization committed to promoting international awareness and global understanding, invited Magnarella to deliver the 2007 “Great Decisions Lectures” in Western North Carolina at four different colleges and universities. The title of the lecture was “War Crimes and International Criminal SUMMER 2007
Tribunals.” He also made a presentation at the Oxford (University) Round Table and participated in week-long discussions on “Today’s Migration of Peoples: The Insularity of Nations.” Writing professor Sebastian Matthews has a new book of poems, We Generous, published by Red Hen Press. Two poems from We Generous were featured on Garrison Keillor’s radio show The Writer’s Almanac (May 4 and 12). Matthews has co-edited the fourth issue of Rivendell, which features Southern Appalachian writers, and served as guest editor for a special jazz issue of Asheville Poetry Review. His recent work in The Georgia Review has been nominated for a Pushcart Prize. Psychology professor Bob Swoap presented “Reclaiming lives: Recovery in serious mental illness” at a faculty seminar on campus. He also served as a moderator for clinical psychology research presentations at the Carolinas Psychology Conference. He took eight Warren Wilson psychology majors to the conference, two of whom presented their advanced research papers. Education professor Laura Turchi has been appointed to the Scandinavian Review Committee of the Council for International Scholars, which conducts peer-reviews of Fulbright applications. She served as chair of the board of directors for the Mountain Area Child and Family Center and served on the NCDPI Program Approval Team for accreditation visits to Pfeiffer University and North Carolina Central University. Dr. Turchi is also a classical violist, performing with the Asheville Symphony and Blue Ridge Orchestra, including concerts for more than 3,000 school children this year.
WWC partners with Panamanian organization for GIS project Warren Wilson and an environmental conservation organization in Panama have been awarded a $100,000 grant from the Panamanian Secretaria Nacional de Ciencia, Tecnologia e Innovacion (SENACYT). The College and the organization Conservation through Research, Education and Action (CREA) will use the grant to implement a geographic information system (GIS) and wireless sensor network on the 1,000-acre Cocobolo Nature Reserve in Panama. The reserve is part of the largest contiguous rainforest in Central America. “The project focuses on both sustainability and crosscultural education,” said Warren Wilson geography professor David Abernathy, who coauthored the grant. Abernathy anticipates “a student exchange so Warren Wilson students can work in Panama and a Panamanian student can work and/or study at Warren Wilson.” Abernathy said another focal point of the project will be the use of “green computing” techniques. The computing equipment not only will be designed to minimize power consumption, but also will be operated by solar power. The creation of a GIS and wireless sensor network database in Cocobolo Nature Reserve is a vital part of CREA’s intent to help meet the sustainable development goals of Panama. CREA will use the reserve as the testing center for a system that combines traditional knowledge systems of local farmers and landholders, research on sustainable agriculture and natural resource protection from higher education institutions and non-governmental organizations, and the latest technology for collecting, analyzing and disseminating environmental data.
Scenes from campus By Kimberly Miller ‘07 The famous chef Julia Child once said, “If you can read, you can cook!” Nowhere on the Warren Wilson campus is that sentiment more true than on Friday evenings in the College Chapel’s lower fellowship hall where students come together with Warren Wilson volunteer Michael Gentry to prepare and eat a savory meal. Each Friday during the academic year, Gentry coordinates and supervises Everyone Cooks, a culinary extravaganza that is free for any student willing to don an apron and pick up a frying pan. Gentry selects recipes from the hundreds of cookbooks he owns, gathers the necessary ingredients, provides instruction and cooks alongside 15-20 students. “I’m sharing what I love,” Gentry explains. “Great ingredients, great food and a great time.” Gentry, a volunteer in the library and on the Garden Crew, claims to have been involved in the cooking industry “since birth,” broiling and baking from Hong Kong to Cuba. He often shares information about a food’s historic and cultural significance as he works to find new and innovative ways to cook it. Gentry brings a simple philosophy to each meal he creates: The most important ingredient, he says, is love.
Being involved with Everyone Cooks is as simple as walking through the already open door of the Lower Fellowship Hall. Participants sign in, wash up and pick one of many vegetarian and organic recipes to prepare. Together, the students prepare and cook everything from broiled portabella mushrooms with fresh rosemary to Greek coleslaw. The end result is a mouthwatering feast shared with new and old friends. This weekly time of learning and sharing grew out of a single event designed to ensure that surplus food wouldn’t go to waste. In the summer of 2001, the Warren
Wilson garden produced a bumper crop of vegetables. Gentry offered to turn the bounty into a community meal, and the event quickly sold out. Now, Everyone Cooks is an official College activity sponsored by the Wellness Crew. On Thursdays, Gentry hosts a similar event that is open to College faculty, staff and the public for a nominal fee. During both nights, he emphasizes food that is sustainable and local. Here’s a recipe from Everyone Cooks that you can try on your own.
n ut d co co e i r d dde d er s shre arob p o w d c 3 cup p ra w 1 /2 c u r a w h o n e y p 1 /3 c u o n v a n i l l a s an d po s a r o ut essor e p c s o 1 t r a p f nt i l d al fal i n fo o d pro ce s s u t i n g s t 1 cup n e i r e c ut ut s a n n g re d l b efo f o u r i t. A d d s p r o l i t h s c r i f d mois an an P la c e i l j u st e s s i nto p t n u r x mi . P s fo r m c lu m p . s quare i nto s
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With a nod toward Thoreau, Warren Wilson College President Sandy Pfeiffer said in his installation address April 28 that the College must continue to strive for “action from principle” in the years ahead. Pfeiffer spoke after being formally installed as the sixth president in the history of the College. Delegates from more than 50 colleges and universities were among the crowd that gathered on a chilly spring afternoon on Sunderland Lawn for the ceremony concluding a week of inaugural events. Among the dignitaries making remarks during the ceremony was Asheville Mayor Terry Bellamy, who challenged Pfeiffer and the College to become greater agents of change in Asheville and Western North Carolina. Delegates included Hope Williams, president of North Carolina Independent Colleges and Universities; Alice Brown, president of the Appalachian College Association; Gary Luhr, executive director of the Association of Presbyterian Colleges and Universities; and Anne Ponder, chancellor of UNC Asheville.
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“Action from Principle— the perception and the performance of right—changes things and relations; it is essentially revolutionary.” —Thoreau
Thanks so much for being here on a day meant to celebrate this wonderful college. Welcome to all of you: students, staff, faculty, retirees, alumni, trustees, members of various advisory councils, President Emeritus Doug Orr and Darcy Orr, delegates from colleges and universities, representatives of the Work Consortium and professional associations, and all other friends of the College. Guests include colleagues from Southern Polytechnic State University and Ramapo College of New Jersey, the two institutions where I served as a senior officer before joining Warren Wilson College. A special welcome to members of my family who are here today: Evelyn, my wife of 31 years and partner on this adventure; our son Zach and daughter Katie, both down from New York City; and my brother Dave, my sister Debbie (here with husband Jay), and my sister Stephanie (here with husband Hal). I have to be careful with siblings present because they know the family
secrets. For example, they’ll remember I’m the one who ran away from kindergarten on my first day of school and had to be retrieved from the town square by my mother—not a good sign for a future academic. Though a reluctant student that day, I tried to redeem myself and grew to love almost every part of public school. One of my siblings recently noted she had not heard me speak in public since I was Student Council president in 1964. Well, it only took me 43 years to get another presidency so that she could hear me once again. To all my family here today, I’m grateful for the love, support, and great experiences we’ve shared. As well, I’m lucky to have had the best of parents, Jean and Hal Pfeiffer. They showed us by example what is fair, good, and important in this world. My remarks today are entitled “Action from Principle”—a phrase I’ll relate to the past, present, and future of Warren Wilson. For this title and my theme, I returned to the works of two of my favorite authors, the 19th-century Transcendentalists, Ralph Waldo Emerson and Henry David Thoreau. What they wrote has enriched my life, and so it seemed natural to reach for their works when I was searching for inspiration. In his 1848 lecture and essay Civil Disobedience, Thoreau wrote that we should not be satisfied to “entertain an opinion merely, and enjoy it.” Instead, he
I emphasized that “Action from Principle— the perception and the performance of right [my emphasis]—changes things and relations; it is essentially revolutionary.” He borrows from his friend Emerson when he asserts later in the essay that such a credo means “you must live within yourself, and depend on yourself.” Though Thoreau’s motivation for writing Civil Disobedience arose from spending just one night in the town jail for failing to pay a poll tax, his remarkable essay speaks to the importance of individual action in any organization and the need to balance individual liberty with responsibilities to society. Reading the work always brings me back to the importance of (1) living a self-reliant and purposeful life in the context of a community and (2) taking effective actions that flow from sound principles. I cannot imagine an institution that more fully embodies the theme of “action from principle” than Warren Wilson. Every day I see examples that would bring a smile to Thoreau’s face. In the few minutes I have with you today, I’ll highlight an example from our past and one from our present, and then end with some challenges we’ll confront in connecting actions to principles in our future.
P A F P Having recently read a history of the College, I found “action from principle” reflected in the value placed on work ever since our founding. Despite changes in the College and its students, the staying power of this ethic is unambiguous. In the early days of the Asheville Farm School, work was connected to the background of students, most of whom came from families of modest means. It was also connected to the needs of a fledgling campus that students helped build—roads, classroom buildings, dorms, and even a dam up the mountain about a mile or two from where you sit. The vocational purpose of our early years flowed smoothly from our Presbyterian mission heritage. Yet even as the College started attracting a more diverse group of students after World War II and expanded its liberal arts offerings, our wise leaders stayed the course and kept work at the forefront—while adjusting to a changing culture in the ’50s and especially the ’60s. I saw proof of this commitment last October while talking to an alumnus returning for his 50th reunion. Now a computer professional out West, this man had what can only be called a joyful look on his face while recollecting a summer project over 50 years ago, building bookshelves in the President’s Home from
“While nurturing our special regional history, we’ll continue to fulfill a growing national role as an excellent liberal arts college with sustainability infused into our culture—that is, into our work, our service, and our academic life.” —Sandy Pfeiffer
wood harvested in the College forest. I’ve regarded those shelves differently ever since that conversation—as I will regard the native trees and bushes planted in the front yard of the President’s Home three days ago by students and many members of the campus community, with a little help from Ev and me. Yes, our history shows that through purposeful work we have acted on our principles. Of course, we’re continually challenged to adapt our work program to changing times—for example, by making it the driving force behind a College commitment to environmentalism and sustainability. And we talk regularly about better ways to make useful connections among the three components of our Triad: work, service, and academics. In all this current activity, we’re sustained by the actions of those who came before us. They reinforced the principles of learning by doing, both inside and outside the classroom, and the integrity of hard work.
P A F P Another principle at the heart of our campus culture, and one that I’ve witnessed this year, is that of community involvement. Actions that flow from this principle can be complicated, lengthy, and occasionally frustrating to the participants. But such actions usually generate results that receive respect and support, if not total agreement. My first Warren Wilson experience with community involvement occurred during my on-campus interview for the presidency. I was astonished to discover that literally hundreds of students, faculty, and staff wanted their chance to ask what seemed like every imaginable question of me. For hours they asked on, and for hours I responded. As the veteran of other campus interviews for senior positions, I had never seen anything like the throngs of students waiting for me in Canon Lounge last spring. It was a little daunting. But it showed me that this College acts on the principle of offering a voice to all. In my ten months here, I’ve witnessed community involvement in actions as diverse as selecting faculty and staff, making recommendations about stewardship of our
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“If one advances confidently in the direction of his dreams,
land, and revising policies on alcohol and pets. For example, we’re now assembling a committee—half students and half faculty/ staff—that will send me a recommendation about smoking regulations on campus. Because the faculty and staff supported a recent resolution on the topic and the Student Caucus did not, we’re putting representatives of both groups together in a room—hopefully not a smoke-filled one—to hammer out a compromise. To be sure, our shared governance process isn’t perfect—what one is?—but the College shows by its actions that the best decisions flow from the principle that we’re a community. All of us work, all of us have a stake in the future of the institution, and all of us deserve the chance to weigh in before decisions are made.
F A F P
We believe in a first-rate liberal arts curriculum.
The future—indeed, the very near future— will require that we act on principles in new and challenging ways. While nurturing our special regional history, we’ll continue to fulfill a growing national role as an excellent liberal arts college with sustainability infused into our culture—that is, into our work, our service, and our academic life. I’ll highlight what I consider to be a few of our bedrock principles, along with questions we’ll need to answer in the process of crafting future actions:
Principle One We believe in community. Questions to answer: Does our governance system provide a true reflection of the community? How does the size of our student enrollment affect our ability to retain what we most love about this college?
and endeavors to live the life he has imagined, he will meet with a success unexpected in common hours.” —Thoreau
Questions to answer: How can these three discrete items become more connected? Are adjustments needed in the time requirements for service or work or both?
Questions to answer: What departments most need more people, technology, or other resources? How can we continue our progress in teaching and learning and in collaborative research between students and faculty?
Principle Five We believe in the importance of diversity within our community. Questions to answer: How should we define diversity at this college? How can we best support and attract minority constituencies, while still emphasizing the ties that bind all of us in this community and in this world?
Principle Six We believe in a healthy, joyful, and balanced work life.
Questions to answer: How can we limit tuition increases, while meeting a growing need for support services? How can we find new resources for need-based financial aid?
Questions to answer: How do we achieve balance on a campus where mission and commitment can consume an inordinate amount of time? How can our college—so obviously committed to a healthier planet—achieve a healthier climate here on campus?
We believe in the Triad of study, work, and service.
We believe we must be a national model for sustainability.
Principle Two We believe in an affordable education.
Questions to answer: How can sustainability—the belief that our lifestyle should not impair the ability of future generations to live their lives—complement our goal of being an excellent liberal arts college? How can we further the cause of sustainability by developing partnerships in this region, around the country, and throughout the world? These noble principles, and many others, belong to this special college. Our past and present success shows we have achieved them, and our ability to attract unusually gifted students, faculty, and staff shows we can continue to do so. I’m glad to be part of this effort, seeking common cause with all friends of the College. In the latest issue of Heartstone, a journal published by Warren Wilson’s Environmental Leadership Center, Margo Flood writes that “Warren Wilson College is a landscape of hope.” To me that sentence means our College and its noble mission can accommodate many different hopeful landscapes. Indeed, it’s my hope that each of us can find here the opportunity to live with personal purpose, with a respect for our community, and with confidence to reach our dreams. In a now famous passage near the end of Walden, Henry David Thoreau writes that “if one advances confidently in the direction of his dreams, and endeavors to live the life he has imagined, he will meet with a success unexpected in common hours.” I’d like to believe that he may have been thinking about a place like Warren Wilson College and of a group of people like you. My thanks to this community for inviting me to join it.
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In depth with
An interview with
Sylvia Earle By Paul Bartels
Warren Wilson College celebrated the 20th anniversary of the annual G.D. Davidson Roundtable Lecture with a talk on April 26 by one of the world’s best-known scientists—pioneering oceanographer Sylvia Earle, National Geographic Society Explorer-in-Residence. The Davidson Roundtable was one in a series of Inauguration Week events that led to the formal installation on April 28 of Sandy Pfeiffer as the sixth president in the College’s history. A longtime champion of the preservation and exploration of marine ecosystems, Earle was named the first “Hero for the Planet” by Time magazine and a “Living Legend” by the Library of Congress. Formerly chief scientist of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), she is executive director for nonprofit and corporate organizations and president of Deep Search International. Since her first scuba dive at age 17, Earle has logged more than 6,000 diving hours while leading more than 50 expeditions. She set the world record for the deepest untethered solo ocean dive (1,250 feet), one of the achievements that have helped her earn nicknames such as “Her Deepness” and “Sturgeon General.” Paul Bartels, Warren Wilson professor of biology, sat down with Earle while she was on campus.
Paul Bartels: Warren Wilson College is in the mountains of Western North Carolina, five hours or more from the ocean. Why should we care about what’s going on way out there? Sylvia Earle: We terrestrial types are biased to the land. We think this is where the action is because this is where we are. But once you’ve been in the ocean, especially if you’ve had a chance to go into the deep ocean, you see that this is really where the action is. This is what drives the way the world works. This is where ocean chemistry is shaped. This is where climate and weather are governed. We somehow don’t have that in our everyday thinking. But we should. With every breath we take we’re linked to the ocean; with every drop of water we consume we’re linked to the ocean. If we do away with the ocean, we do away with life. Just like that. So you better care about the ocean. We all better care.
PB: Your deepest solo dive was to 1,000 meters, over 3,000 feet. For those of us who are divers and would love to go that deep, could you tell us what that’s like? What did you see on that dive? SE: The first thing I think that strikes you going into a submarine is that there’s life all the way down as far as you go. The ocean is not just rocks and water. It’s filled with life. I think of it as a minestrone, but all of the little bits are alive and swimming around. There are areas where you see what is known as marine snow. It’s actually a collection of organic debris, but it’s always packed with life—bacteria, small crustaceans. Sometimes they glow in the dark because of the bacteria associated with them. But it’s the decrease of light that also is so impressive. It’s night all the time if you get below 1,000 feet. And it’s that transition from the beautiful blue of a clear, healthy ocean to night that is so striking. Gradually, the colors that we’re so familiar with on the surface—the reds, the oranges, the yellows —they disappear as you go into the water. When you’re at 50 feet you’re in a world of blue, and the deeper you go the bluer it gets, until you run out of names for blue. Then you start trying to think of new ways to express blue. It gets to that deep indigo purple-blue that edges into black. Then this deep blue-black, and then it’s black, black, black, with still a little light though, but now it’s bioluminescent light. Something like 90 percent of life in the sea has some
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“With every breath we take we’re linked to the ocean; with every drop of water we consume we’re linked to the ocean. If we do away with the ocean, we do away with life. Just like that. So you better care about the ocean. We all better care.” —Sylvia Earle
form of bioluminescence, which you don’t see unless you dive at night, or you dive into the night of the deep sea. After all, the average depth of the ocean is two and a half miles, a little more than 4,000 meters. The maximum is 11,000 meters, seven miles. There’s life all the way down and there’s light all the way down. So that’s part of what’s so joyful about going down there—seeing that most of life on Earth lives in the dark, because most of life on Earth lives in the ocean below 1,000 feet. Ninety seven percent of Earth’s living space is ocean, and it’s filled with life from the top to the bottom. PB: In 1996 I taught a course in ocean conservation here and I used your book Sea Change. You pointed out all of the serious threats to the ocean at that time. Could you summarize the trends since then? SE: I think there’s a lot of bad news, but there’s also a lot of good news. The bad news is the new understanding about phenomena such as acidification of the ocean, and the wakeup call we’ve had concerning climate change. The good news is that we really are starting to take it seriously. Climate change effects are now
within a time frame that we can get our arms around. It’s not a thousand years from now or ten thousand years from now, but how about in fifty years people who now have gorgeous beachfront property are going to see that swallowed up by the ocean. And it’s not just Florida, it’s coastal areas everywhere. Island countries that have a very low elevation are concerned that their whole country is going to be underwater. So, if we’ve got some say over the blue part of the planet then why don’t we do something about it? Why don’t we pull out all the stops and use the powers that we have as a country and protect it? We can say, “Stop tearing up the ocean with trawls and with draggers and with long-liners!” The integrity of these systems is vital to maintaining stability for the ocean, thus, stability for our life support which translates to economy, to health, to security. We have the power to arrest some of the damaging activities that are taking place, both what we’re putting into the ocean in terms of pollution, and what we’re taking out of the ocean in terms
of unsustainable extraction of wildlife from the sea. The destructive practices that we’re using to do that don’t just take the targeted species, but they are responsible for killing hundreds of thousands of marine mammals, hundreds of thousands of birds, and countless millions of incidentally taken fish. It’s an outrage when you understand the real cost of commercial fishing. PB: I have here the Pocket Seafood Selector from the Environmental Defense Fund’s Oceans Alive campaign listing their “Eco Best” and “Eco Worst” fish.
Sylvia Earle and Paul Bartels
Sylvia Earle took time to explore the campus, always eager to stop and chat with students.
SE: My list is much shorter than this. PB: You’ve decided not to eat seafood at all? SE: That’s true, and I have done more than my share over the years, so I’ve got a lot of making up by not eating any seafood, but I didn’t know any better. Now that I know, I just can’t. I understand the real cost of shrimp, whether it’s farm-raised or wild caught. Wild caught is a whole lot worse because the real cost is much higher—the damage caused to the bottom, the terrain, and the by-catch. The amount of biomass destroyed compared to shrimp taken is often twenty to one. Some say less, but they’re not counting the sponges that have no economic value. They’re not counting the starfish or the destruction of the sea floor itself. Scallop harvesting is the same —it’s destroying the habitat. What people are not accounting for when they go to the supermarket or go to a restaurant and order a flounder—or they order a cod, or they order an orange roughy, or they order a Chilean sea bass, or they order a grouper —they don’t realize that they’re ordering the components of our life support system that can’t be replaced. Maybe not ever. At this stage, we have so depressed their numbers. And shark fin soup? Forget it! It’s one of the worst things that we can consume.
PB: But it’s not really viable on a worldwide basis to ban all commercial fishing. SE: Yes it is! Because it’s subsidized worldwide with billions of dollars. If you took away the subsidies to commercial fishermen, most would go out of business. It would not be feasible. It wouldn’t be practical. We’re paying these guys to kill the ocean, in a way. They say, “Hey, it’s how I make my living,” but whose fish are they? They’re taking from the global commons. And yes, there are some constraints, some rules and regulations at least within national waters, but internationally it’s mostly up for grabs. There are some international guidelines for taking tuna, but they aren’t nearly stringent enough. When I was chief scientist at the National Oceanographic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), the numbers in the Atlantic were down to 10 percent from 1972 to 1992. Well, here we are well into another big chunk of time and some are still saying it’s 10 percent. That’s just not believable. Maybe 2 percent, maybe less than that. It’s hard to find the big tuna these days. I was in the Tokyo fish market about eight years ago. I could literally pick up the tunas they were so small, and the swordfish looked like toys. They are fish
that normally get to be a thousand pounds or so and might live 10, 20, or 30 years. These are babies, there just aren’t big ones —we’ve eaten them. And their moms and dads aren’t out there to make the next generation because we’ve eaten them, too. What kind of sustainability is that? We just have to stop, not just for their sake but for our sake. Not just because we might like to eat tuna again someday, but because maybe we’ll come to the point where, as we did years ago with wild birds, we realize they have a value alive that transcends their value as pounds of meat. Most of what we consume worldwide comes from things we grow. Imagine trying to feed people at the six billion level with wild things from the land: songbirds and little furry things, bush meat. We couldn’t get very far for very long with six billion people, and we can’t with the ocean either. We’ve tried it over the last half century. We have gone further, deeper, used more powerful means of finding and extracting the last little pockets of protein from the sea and we’re doing them in; we’re running out. If we continue doing what we’re doing now, recent studies suggest that by 2048 there won’t be commercially viable fish populations. And extraction of wildlife from the sea is not going to feed people who really need the ocean as a source of protein. We’re feeding a luxury market. We can’t say that we’re feeding a lot of people with tuna or swordfish or orange roughy. They’re going for high prices in population centers that can afford the costs, and they’re not paying the real costs even so. The highest price I heard for a single tuna fish in the wholesale market in Tokyo was $183,000 for one four hundred pound tuna. That’s a high price for your protein when there are thousands of other sources. We’re not taking the best advantage of the great sources of protein from plants. And
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other farmed food is much more viable. It may take a hundred thousand pounds of plants to make one pound of tuna, it takes two pounds of plants for a pound of chicken and 20 pounds for a pound of cow. Many people are starting to think about feeding a hungry world population, and we all need to think about what we feed ourselves. PB: You’ve mentioned some good news in marine conservation. You’ve been working on marine protected areas and recently the Northwest Hawaiian Islands were protected. Can you tell us how that happened? SE: I had a chance that fell out of the sky about a year ago to have an hour and a half face-to-face with George W. Bush without any keepers around to second guess or take notes. It happened because Jean-Michel Cousteau produced a wonderful film about the Northwest Hawaiian Islands. Laura Bush is the one credited with arranging for it to be shown at the White House for a select audience. About fifty of us were invited to come for this screening, have popcorn, soda, and then a dinner and a free-form discussion about environmental issues inspired by this incredible film. Well, it was a quiet week globally, apparently, because the President actually showed up and introduced the film. We looked at the film and then retired to dinner. A friend I brought to the dinner had on a brilliant aqua jacket and this guy came and sat next to her, commenting on how much he liked the jacket. I sat beside her, not really taking in who the guy was, but it turns out it was the President of the United States. Also joining us were Jean-Michael Cousteau and the head of the Marine Sanctuary Foundation, Lori Arguelles. So the conversation proceeded and we first, of course, let President Bush have the floor.
He talked about his concern about climate change and wanted to know if it was real and we said “Yes!” He talked about energy consumption and his earnest interest in looking for alternatives. The conversation then turned to the Northwest Hawaiian Islands, which were under serious consideration for protection. Lots of people worked very hard to set the stage so that they could be the latest marine sanctuary and the largest. There were three different sizes that were under consideration: small, medium, and large. The largest was 140,000 square miles. It embraced a big area beyond the state waters into national waters. That’s what most of us were pushing for. But the idea was that as a sanctuary it still wouldn’t be protected in the same way that we think of national parks. In national parks you can’t shoot the birds and you can’t collect the plants but in a marine sanctuary, except for very small areas within the places designated as notake zones, you can do just about anything. This was a new concept for the President. He asked, “Why do they call it a sanctuary if you can fish there?” Lori Arguelles explained about the political difficulties of no-take zones, then I broke in and said, “You know, as a fisherman, I know you really will understand that in order to be a fisherman you have to have fish, and fish have to have a place to live for there to be fish. It’s like Ducks Unlimited: for there to be ducks or geese or other wild birds you have to protect the marshes. Right now for fish, their numbers are so depressed that we really have to urgently protect their breeding areas, their feeding areas, and their corridors. The Northwest Hawaiian Islands is a nice chunk of ocean that will give that part of the ocean a chance to recover what’s been lost.” President Bush credits that dinner with changing his mindset. First of all, the biggest area prevailed. Secondly, instead of it being a sanctuary, he made it a national monument by presidential edict, which
“If we continue doing what we’re doing now, recent studies suggest that by 2048 there won’t be commercially viable fish populations.” —Sylvia Earle
is an approach that Teddy Roosevelt used to establish some of the major western parks in his time. Many of those subsequently became national parks. But the implications of this edict are that from that moment forward, when the decree was signed, on June 15, 2006, 140,000 square miles of ocean, an area larger than all the national parks put together in this country, were safe for the creatures who live there. including the fish. Some little piece of ocean that was a true haven, that’s just an amazing accomplishment. And we need to do a lot more of it. It’s our security blanket for the future. On the Web:
To find out more about Sylvia Earle, visit www.nationalgeographic.com/explorers-
Drew Stephens ’88 spreads the GIS g o s p e l , one ocean at a time By John Bowers
With services like MapQuest, OnStar and Google Earth, geographic information systems (GIS) have come to the masses. Click a button, set some parameters and you can call up detailed driving directions, view a satellite image of your house or check the weather in Cairo. If Drew Stephens ’88 has his way, GIS will do much more than this. After graduating from Warren Wilson in 1988 and studying geography at Appalachian State University, Stephens found himself in the corporate world of GIS. Before long, he felt he was getting farther and farther away from what attracted him to GIS in the first place—the conservation of natural resources. “I’m interested in working with passionate people in local communities who are taking care of their home,” Stephens says. As an active member in the Society for Conservation GIS (SCGIS), he had established contacts with local communities and conservation organizations across the globe. SCGIS brought community activists to the United States for training in GIS technology to help advocate for the protection of natural resources. With help from GIS software companies like ESRI, whom Stephens had worked for, SCGIS was able to send the community representatives home with donated laptops and expensive GIS software.
“I’m interested in working with passionate people in local communities who are taking care of their home.” —Drew Stephens ’88
Then, Stephens posed the question, “What if we went out and trained people in the field, in their own communities?” Doing so would not only allow SCGIS to reach more people
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June 2007–November 2007
at less cost, but it would also allow GIS trainers like Stephens to be on-site and thus better understand the needs of specific communities. With an abiding interest in sailing and coupled with his vision of GIS outreach, Service at Sea was born. The Service at Sea crew, which includes Julia Kernitz ’07, an environmental policy major who worked on the Environmental Leadership Center and GIS work crews, and documentary filmmakers Soul Fabric Films (www.soulfabric.net), among others, will circumnavigate the globe by sailboat to help communities and conservation groups improve their homes by implementing GIS technology. “The need in the developing world is for training and software,” Stephens says. During the four-year project, Service at Sea will offer GIS training workshops, assistance and free software. In return, Stephens and his organization will receive a copy of the data produced and make it available on the Internet to contribute to the GIS data sharing movement. A major goal of Service at Sea is to create Web-based K–12 teaching units from their data collection and experiences in conservation GIS. As this magazine goes to press, Copper Sky, an 88-foot steel-hull staysail schooner, is in Vancouver being prepared for the Service at Sea journey. By the time you read this story, the crew will be at work in Valdez, Alaska, studying the Valdez oil spill, where over 10 million gallons of oil spilled from a tanker into Prince William Sound in 1989. The crew will explore how GIS has been used in that catastrophe and study how the ecosystem has recovered. From there, Copper Sky and crew will make their way southward making 20 stops to the end of the first segment in Baja, Mexico. To follow the crew and support Service at Sea, a 50lc3 nonprofit, please visit www.serviceatsea.org.
On the Web:
alumni 1965 alumnus fights riverblindness in Africa Rivers sustain all forms of life in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), including the 60 million people who inhabit the African country. Yet, these fast flowing waters breed a debilitating disease that has infected 13 million people. Onchocerciasis, or riverblindness, is a parasitic disease that is passed to humans through the small black flies that breed along riverbanks. The illness manifests initially as a skin disorder, but the disease impairs vision and ultimately causes blindness. The daily contact villagers make with the rivers, through fishing, farming, washing and drinking, puts an estimated 21 million people at risk of contracting riverblindness. Warren Wilson graduate Daniel Shungu ’65 was born in the DRC, and while he was naturalized as a U.S. citizen, he felt the need to dedicate his work as medical professional to his native country. He formed the United Front Against Riverblindness (UFAR), a U.S.-based nonprofit dedicated to controlling the disease through community empowerment. Shungu developed a community-directed treatment plan using the drug Ivermectin, a safe, effective drug that is easily administered. Individual communities elect a representative, called a community distributor, to be trained by UFAR. By enabling individual community members to fight the disease, the geographic scope of treatment is greatly increased and the community itself is enriched and empowered. Dr. Shungu is preparing for the official launch of the community-directed treatment initiative in the Kasongo region of the DRC. Armed with over 2,000 freshly trained community distributors and a supply of 600,000 Mectizan tablets, the UFAR is prepared fight this devastating disease and improve the health and well-being of the 941,409 people living in Kasongo.
’50s Bill Miller ’53 is not quite retired after 35 years of teaching, first at Auburn University, and later at the University of Georgia. He is living on Dog Island, Florida, and hopes to see some of you at the next class reunion. Jerry Deaton ’59 embarked on a journey to Asia to reunite with Warren Wilson classmates Dr. Arun Preededilok ’59 and Dr. Peter Nai ‘59. His first stop was Bangkok, home of Dr. Preededilok. After receiving his education in the U.S., Dr. Preededilok returned to Thailand to teach and eventually worked with the Ministry of Education. Deaton then traveled to Malaysia where he visited Dr. Nai. Though Dr. Nai has lived in Kuala Lumpur for many years, he has spent ten years in Australia where he was awarded the Centenary Medal for his contributions to the Buddhist community. Deaton returned stateside after a month of travel, grateful to Warren Wilson for giving him the opportunity meet and befriend two individuals from cultures so radically different than his own. “Being at Warren Wilson College at that time, there were so many international students,” Deaton recalls, “It was a really unique experience for all of us.” Danny Starnes ’59 is getting settled with his wife, Arden, after their recent retirements. Both are happy to be back home in the mountains they love. Danny would like to hear from his classmates.*
’60s Milt Ohlsen ’63 and his wife, Fran, retired in June 2006. They sold their house, moved aboard their boat, the Sea Fox, and began a two-year cruise around the Great Loop. They plan to return to St. Louis for family occasions and to see their 2½-year- old granddaughter.
Mary F. Page ’63 is principal of Bugg Elementary, a creative arts and sciences magnet school in Raleigh. In 2004 Bugg Elementary was named the Magnet School of the Nation.
C.W. “Kam” Kammerer Jr. ’69 and his life partner of 19 years celebrated their 20th anniversary on Memorial Day by getting married. They both transitioned from Bank of America to EDS Corp. in early 2003 and moved from northern California to Dallas in August 2004. They welcome emails and other contacts from those who were at WWC while Kam was there.* Loralee (Cholak) Slaughter ’69 and Larry Slaughter ’70 now have four grandchildren, Riley (7), Hays (7), Ben (2), and Grayson Rayne (14 months). Both are retired educators and work in sales. They would love to hear from old friends and would welcome visits to Thomasville, Georgia.
’70s Bob Bowers ’70 is currently developing programs that will allow students to take college level courses while still in high school. He is helping to create a linkage between school districts and colleges and universities in Ohio.
Sharon (Nichols) Randolph ’77 has recently moved from Florida to Maryville, Tennessee. After 18 years as a probation officer, she is taking some time off to recuperate while looking for a teaching position at a local college. She and her husband, Christopher, are enjoying the Smokies and plan to join a hiking club as soon as they can find their way out of unpacking boxes.
’80s Thomas Reed Peterson ’81 edited A Road Runs Through It: Reviving Wild Places, a collection of essays that has been reviewed by Rain Taxi and Orion magazines. All royalties are donated to Wildlands CPR, which “revives wild places by promoting watershed restoration through road removal, preventing new road construction and stopping off-road vehicle abuse.” Ryan Garrett ’83 was recently named a principal with the Edward Jones Holding OWL & SPADE
n o te s Company, The Jones Financial Companies L.L.L.P. He is one of only 34 individuals chosen from 33,000 associates. Ryan has also been actively involved in his community as a board member for many local projects and as an active member of his local Rotary Club.
Susannah M. Chewning ’87 has recently published two articles: “Queer desire and heterosexual consummation in the anchoritic mystical tradition,” in Straight Writ Queer: Non-Normative Expressions of Heterosexuality in Literature and “Chaucer and vernacular writing,” in Approaches to Teaching Chaucer’s Troilus and Criseyde and the Shorter Poems.
James “Jim” Phippard ’87 has been working at Giant for six years now. He received the Advocacy Award from Arlington County, Virginia, Community Service Board. Jim is also volunteering with the American Ministry of the greater Washington Area and the Arlington Street People Assistance Network. He is also very involved with projects at Grace Community Church and is looking forward to his next visit to WWC. He would love to hear from alumni.* Andrew Shaffer ’89 has been living in Japan for the last nine years. He works as a corporate trainer/consultant, designing and implementing a wide variety of intercultural communication and business skills, strategic management workshops and seminars for big name international corporations in Tokyo.
’90s Laura Luce ’90 sends her greetings to all the folks of ’89 and ’90. She has just finished working as a Peace Corps trainer in Fiji and Honduras for the last three and a half years. She is now working as the training manager for programs at Heifer Project International in Little Rock, Arkansas, and would love to hear from people in the area and new and old friends at Wandrer85@hotmail.com.
Greg Wilkins ’90 has been selected to serve as education chair for Region 15 of the Association of College Unions International as well as sit on their regional leadership team. He was also published in their international March 2007 issue of The Bulletin with his piece titled “The college union: Built to last or preparing for extinction?” Greg presented at the Northwest Association of Special Programs in Seattle, Washington, on “Brain drain: Close encounters with the next generation.” Amy Besnard ’91 and husband, Frederic, would like to join Caroline (8) and Julien (10) in sending you best wishes for 2007. They are enjoying the sun and amazing beaches of their island, and have one desire for 2007: they would like you to visit them! Book your flight and go! They hope to hear from you and see you soon, hugs and kisses.
Margaret “Peggy” (Kitchell) Tipton ’92 has moved overseas with her family, to Dar Es Salaam, Tanzania, after her husband, Bob, took a position with the Peace Corps. They are very excited about this new adventure.
Miles Moritz ’91 and Sondra (Lawing) Moritz ’93 have five children and are in the midst of a building and clearing project on their 74 acres in Rumney, New Hampshire. Miles is a veterinarian and Sandra home schools their children and sells dairy products.
Nicole “Coco” Palmer ’93 married Thomas Dolce in Asheville on May 7, 2005. The two reside happily in Asheville with their cats. Coco looks forward to hearing from old friends at copalmer13@ hotmail.com.
Joanna Gollberg ’95 has soldered her imagination with her passion for creating distinctive metal jewelry. Her pieces are handmade from sterling silver, 18K gold sheet, and wire. “I strive to make jewelry that is interesting and new, jewelry that is wearable without going out of style,” she says. Gollberg worked mostly with beads until a gift of enamels and kilns from her grandmother prompted her to take a jewelry-making class at the Penland School of Crafts. She returned from the class hooked on making jewelry and constructed her first studio in the basement of Carson Hall at Warren Wilson. Her second studio was in Stephenson, where she was the resident director. After graduating from Warren Wilson, she attended the Fashion Institute of Technology and earned an associate’s degree in jewelry design. Her work in metalsmithing and jewelry making has landed her a booth at the 2007 Smithsonian Crafts Show, the most prestigious craft show in the United States. In addition to practicing her art, Gollberg teaches and writes books on jewelry making. While marriage (to Jamie Stirling ’94) and travel are in her near future, she plans to continue working in her studio in downtown Asheville. On the Web:
Monique Cote ’94 and John P. McGee ’94 marked the end of 2006 by moving into their new home which they planned, helped build, and had certified as a green home. Their son, Gabriel (3), is doing well. John in an oncology nurse at Mission
Hospital and Monique continues to serve WWC in the Admission Office.
Mandy Pearson ’95 and her husband, Will, welcomed their first child, Samuel Joseph Dornan, into the world on October 30, 2006. They are currently living on a ranch in Wyoming and welcome letters.*
Britta Dedrick ’96 just had her threemonth ontological check up, and all is clear. So far, so good! (She had a bout with breast cancer this past summer/spring).
Devere Keen ’96 married Bill Gamble on October 7, 2006, in Durango, Colorado. She has a private practice in massage therapy and can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Laura Zebehazy ’96 works as a field biologist in Austin, Texas, surveying for two endangered bird species on the Balcones Canyon Lands Preserve. She bought a home with her boyfriend, Todd Brooks. She would love to hear from you, and if you’re interested in adding bird watching to your life list, she is more than happy to help! Contact Laura at Lazebehazy@hotmail.com. Richard “Ted” Duncan ’97 and his wife, Amina, adopted Addison Andre from Russia on March 14. Addison turned one year old on May 27.
Eliza Lynn ’00 may have been a member of the College’s garden crew, but it’s her music instead of her green thumb that now keeps her busy. Eliza says she learned about rhythm and the creative process when she played in Common Ground, a drum ensemble founded at Warren Wilson. After graduation, Eliza set out on adventures that included meditating at a Zen Monastery in Minnesota, working as a can-can girl at a theme park, and a brief attempt at teaching English in China. She couldn’t stay away from Asheville or music for very long, though. “I moved away a few times,” she says, “but kept being drawn back.” Eliza returned to the Land of the Sky and found a job as a program director at the Asheville YWCA. While working at the YWCA she recorded her first album to much critical acclaim. “Frisky or Fair has been a springboard for me to dive into being a full time artist, inspiring me to play lots of gigs, create a wonderful band, and have my music played on the radio,” she says. She was voted best local singer/songwriter of 2006 by Mountain Xpress, Asheville’s weekly independent newspaper. Eliza was also given a grant from Asheville Arts Council to study with blues guitarist John Cephas and opened for John Hiatt at Asheville’s Orange Peel. Her single “Sing a New Song” is featured on the Putumayo World Music release, Americana. Eliza attributes her album’s success to what she calls her circle of support, a group of people who pre-ordered her album. She is currently recording on her second album and is again relying on her circle of support. Eliza recently returned to Sage Café on the Warren Wilson campus for a performance. “I enjoyed playing Sage,” she says. “It made me a little nostalgic.” Sage Café is a more intimate venue than the Orange Peel, but it is in small places surrounded by a supportive community that nurtures this artist and helps her to find her own voice. On the Web: www.elizalynn.com
Tikkun Gottschalk ’97 is an associate attorney with Robert J. Deutsch, P.A., in Asheville. Tikkun graduated magna cum laude from Florida State University School of Law in 2005. He also recently attended the National Trial Advocacy College at the University of Virginia School of Law.
Clay Heck ’97 has been working as a general contractor for five years. He is building his sixth home in the Carolina mountains and married his wife, Julia, in 2005. They have two boys who are very active and keep them on their toes. Tracy Keeley ’97 has recently returned to
Will Carlson ’98 has been living in Hawaii for the past seven years, guiding mountain biking expeditions and working as a special education teacher at Maunaloa School on Molokai. Will married his girlfriend of five years, Dorie Kauwila, on June 25, 2005. On May 19, 2006, he finished his M.A. in special education from the University of Hawaii. Will is an active member of his community and assistant varsity girls soccer coach. Douglas Korb ’98 and Erika (Haupt) Korb ’01 have moved to Brattleboro,
Colorado after living in Seattle because she needed to get back to sunshine. She was married in July to Jason Keeley, whom she has dated for the past five years.
Vermont, where they have run into two WWC alumni so far. Erika is a case manager for Big Brothers Big Sisters. Douglas is a project manager for Stratford Publishing.
Rebecca (Hall) Stanford ’97 and Benjamin Stanford ’97 and son, Will,
Elizabeth Bricken ’99 graduated from
announce the birth of their daughter/ sister, Kathryn Elizabeth Stanford, born December 12, 2006.
the University of Natal in Durban, South Africa, in 2003. She has been living, working, and studying in Montevideo,
Uruguay, and Indianapolis, Indiana. She is now attending the Graduate Institute of Applied Linguistics in Dallas and will be translating scriptures as a Wycliffe Bible Translator. Contact Elizabeth at Elizabeth_ Bricken@sil.org.
’00s Jordan Arico ’00 works for a vitamin company, Life Enhancement Products. She has been fencing competitively and came in ninth in the Hawaii Open’s Women’s Foil. Jordan is in the process of getting a team together to compete in the summer nationals in Miami. Her next tournament is the Pacific Coast Championship in Las Vegas. Christine Etter ’00 has just accepted the position of program director at Eagle’s Nest Foundation, where she will be supervising wilderness education. Christine hopes to form a meaningful profession in helping students to build character and grow in OWL & SPADE
their personal skills and group skills. She will be living on campus with her two dogs, Kobey and Bimini.
Matt Drury ’01 is in Vanuatu for another year of Peace Corps service on the island of Espirito Santo. He is helping to set up a conservation area on and around Mount Tabwemesana, home to the endemic starling. Matt would like to get in touch with many people but is at a lack for emails and addresses.*
Ruby Chorbajian ’03 is now studying international human rights law and border control conflict jointly at the School of Law at Queens University Belfast and the University of Galway. After graduation she hopes to gain field experience working on the ground for a human rights monitoring body.
Ryan Walsh ’03 will be attending the MFA program in creative writing at the University of Wisconsin-Madison in the fall.
Kelly Ann Davis ’04 is attending the University of Texas School of Law in Austin. She plans to focus on environmental law.
Joei Honeycutt ’04 and Rebecca Pierson ’04 were married on October 28, 2006, at WWC. Rebecca will receive her master’s in library science from UNCChapel Hill in May, and Joei will begin graduate studies in social work in the fall.
Sara Benincasa Donnelly ’05 completed her master’s degree at Columbia University in May. She performs stand up and sketch comedy around New York City and was recently hired as a contributing writer to The Onion and Babble.com. She lives in Brooklyn’s Bedford-Stuyvesant neighborhood with her best friend from AmeriCorps.
Abigail (Miner) Speed ’05 married Paul Speed on August 10, 2006. The wedding was held in Long Creek, South Carolina, and many WWC alums were in attendance. The Greasy Beans played, several of whom are also Warren Wilson alumni.
Rebecca Rudicell ’05 will be attending University of Alabama at Birmingham in a doctorate program in cellular and molecular biology after being accepted into a number of graduate programs in the biomedical science. At UAB, Rebecca was awarded a Howard Hughes Fellowship.
Rayna was raised in a musical family in Northern Indiana. Her father, Dan, is a renowned old-time fiddler and banjo-player, whom Rayna cites as her biggest musical inspiration. Rayna began playing violin in grade school. At Warren Wilson College, she began learning fiddle tunes from tapes in her dorm room. She sought out old-time musicians in the area and eventually began playing for dances throughout the Southeast and Midwest. Rayna joined Uncle Earl in 2003. SUMMER 2007
Jefferey Cameron Stallings ’05 and Emily (Monteith) Stallings ’05 announce the birth of their first child, Unika Meru. Emily, Cameron, and Unika Meru Dawn-Stallings send their best.
Gelsey Malferrari ’06 has traveled to Italy, Switzerland, England, and Ireland since graduation and is about to embark on another epic journey to Central and South America and the Caribbean. She will be working for an organization called WWOOF (Willing Workers On Organic Farms). Keep an ear out for the g’Earls as they travel across the country on their 2007 tour, which includes festivals from North Carolina to California.
Say Uncle! Uncle Earl, the female stringband quartet featuring fiddler Rayna Gellert ’98, is becoming a well-known name in the music world. This summer, the g’Earls, as they like to be called, are playing major U.S. music festivals like Bonnaroo and Merlefest. Uncle Earl is comprised of Kristin Andreassen, Abigail Washburn, KC Groves, and Rayna.
Warren Wilson alumni and friends traveled with Dr. Hun Lye, religious studies professor, to explore Tibet June 7-22. Lhasa, the ancient capital of Tibet, served as their home base as they journeyed to sacred lakes, holy mountains, monasteries and nunneries. Here, the group stands in front of the Potala Palace, formerly the chief residence of the Dalai Lama.
L-R: Abigail Washburn, KC Groves, Kristin Andreassen, Rayna Gellert Photo by Aaron Farrington
Uncle Earl recently recorded their sophomore release Waterloo, Tennessee, which was produced by Led Zeppelin bassist John Paul Jones. In a recent interview, Jones talked about his experience with the g’Earls. “Their focus and energy were everything that I could have wished for, and for myself I’m very proud of this record and my association with Uncle Earl.” In addition to producing, Jones played bass, piano, Papoose (a mini-guitar) and wobble board on the record. Gillian Welch provides guest drums on the song “The Last Goodbye.”
Lyrics from “One True”, a song from Waterloo, Tennessee I lived up on the mountain and the view was long. Knew the band would always play my favorite song. Crowd of strangers, I knew just how to belong. Lived up on the mountain and the view was long.
On the Web:
Matt Drury makes a difference in Vanuatu By Julie Lehman, Director of Church Relations As the enthusiasm for Warren Wilson College spread at this year’s combined councils’ meeting, one board member expressed the shared sentiment of the group by wishing there was some way to bottle up the spirit of the College and spread it across the world. The notion sounds idealistic but is already occurring through the dedicated lives of many Warren Wilson alumni. “Worldchanging” is a popular concept among students here and a continuing goal for most who choose this place for their undergraduate education. One shining example is the work of
Matt Drury ’01 from Louisville,
MFA Julia Nunnally Duncan ’84 has a third book, Drops of the Night, published by Parkway Publishers.
Kentucky, who will be completing his three-year Peace Corps assignment in the Vanuatu village on Espirito Santo, a remote island in the Southwest Pacific. Matt’s primary assignment was to set up a conservation area for the village. His secondary assignment was to resolve land disputes among chiefs—no easy task as the region has the largest variety of spoken languages per capita in the world. Matt also helped villagers convert to sustainable crops and farming systems through the introduction of fallow periods, crop rotation, alley cropping and terrace planting. And there’s more. He led efforts to install a new water delivery system and a solar-powered battery recharging system and managed to
Jocleyn Lieu ’93 has a memoir of 9/11, What Isn’t There: Inside a Season of Change, published by Nation Books/Avalon.
Laure-Anne Bosselaaar ’94 has a
Terry Ford ’84 has a second poetry
third poetry collection, A New Hunger, published by Ausable Press.
collection, Hams Beneath the Firmament, from Four Way Books.
Dianah Berland ’95 has a new book,
poetry, F2F, published by Notre Dame Press.
Hour of Devotion: Fanny Neuda’s Book of Prayers for Jewish Women, published by Schocken Books, a division of Random House.
J.C. Todd ’90 has her first full-length
Joan Frank ’96 received a Ludwig
poetry book, What Space This Body, to be published by Wind Publications this fall.
Vogelstein Award for her fourth novel, Scarlet and Melanie.
Joseph Bathanti ’91 won the 2006
Michael Thomas ’97 has a novel, Man
Spokane Prize for Short Fiction for his collection The High Heart. The prize includes $1,000 and publication. Novello Festival Press published Bathanti’s novel, Coventry, in 2006. He teaches creative writing at Appalachian State University.
Gone Down, published by Grove Atlantic. It was reviewed on the front page of the New York Times Book Review.
Janet Holmes ’85 has a fourth book of
Lucy Brennan ’92 will see her first play performed this year. Daughter of the House will be produced by the Alumnae Theatre Company in Toronto.
Ellen Dudley ’92 has a second poetry collection, The Geographic Cure, published by Four Way Books.
Kim Ponders ’02 has a second novel, The Last Blue Mile. Its publication by HarperCollins coincided with the paperback release of her first novel, The Art of Uncontrolled Flight.
establish a women’s center for making and selling handmade items and food. With three months remaining in his Peace Corps contract, Matt has been thrilled to deliver the news to the village church that they will receive $3,000 from the Warren Wilson Presbyterian Church and College Chapel towards completion of their new church building, which also serves as a community center and cyclone shelter. The funds are available thanks to the benevolence commitment of 10% of the renovation campaign the church is undertaking. The 75 villagers who will benefit from this new building are all members of the Presbyterian Church of Vanuatu, also a mission school of the Presbyterian Church (USA), founded in 1898. Come September, Matt will be back in the states and exploring options for his future.
The Survey says . . . Thanks to all of you who took the time to complete the 2007 readership survey. Most of your responses were overwhelmingly positive, and we appreciate that. You told us that Around Campus & Beyond, Alumni Notes, and the President’s Message are the three sections you most enjoy, followed closely by the feature stories and alumni profiles. Those choices were also reflected in the the question asking what you want to see more of in the magazine. Many of you like the variety of student, staff and faculty voices we’ve started to feature in the magazine—it only makes sense for us to dip into the pool of talented campus writers. Finally, it’s clear from the survey that the Alumni Notes section is a valued resource. Go ahead and send in your update—your classmates want to know about you, they told us they did. You can also call the Alumni Office to get access to the online alumni database.
Ian Wilson ’02 has a chapbook, Out Of
Thanks again for your feedback. We welcome your letters and comments any time.
The Arcadian Ghetto, published by Cervena Barva Press.
John Bowers, Editor email@example.com
Beverly Bie Brahic ’06 has published new translations of work by Jacques Derrida and Helene Cixous. OWL & SPADE
Losses Ina Fleenor Crane ’48
in me mor ia m Wilma Dykeman Stokely
April 7, 2007 Mrs. Crane was the recipient of the Distinguished Alumna Award in 1968.
Wilma Dykeman Stokely, 86, died Dec. 22, 2006, at the John F. Keever Hospice Solace Center in Asheville. The well-respected author of 18 books was a former Warren Wilson College Board of Visitors member and the College’s 1994 Commencement speaker. A longtime friend of the College, she spoke at numerous campus events, including the kickoff for the 2002 Together We Read program, which featured her book The French Broad. In that book and in her other works, she explored the Appalachian region honestly and with integrity. President Emeritus Doug Orr hosted a celebration of her life June 13, 2007, at the Diana Wortham Theatre in Asheville.
Intersec tions Frances Moffett Whitfield ’55 and her husband were waiting to go ashore in Dalian, China, when they struck up a conversation with a couple from Connecticut. When Frances told them she was from North Carolina, they said, “North Carolina—we have a daughter who went to school in North Carolina.” That school was none other than Warren Wilson College. The daughter, Barbara Decker ’76, is currently in Venezuela. Got an Intersection to share? Send it to John Bowers, firstname.lastname@example.org.
*Track down your classmates through the CampusWeb alumni directory. Contact the Alumni Office for your login information.
Lillie M. Connet (Mickey) Lillie M. Connet, 92, of Swannanoa, died May 29, 2007. A native of St. Augustine, Florida, Mrs. Connet had lived in Buncombe County for the past 70 years. She was the wife of the late John Lane Connet. She was a member of the Warren Wilson Presbyterian Church and a business instructor at the Asheville Farm School from 1937-40. Surviving are her children Joan Keuper, William Connet ’73 and Peter Connet; nine grandchildren; and nine great-grandchildren. Memorials may be made to the Warren Wilson Presbyterian Church organ restoration fund.
East meets West—Jimmy Ning & Alma Shippy When the time came to vote on whether Alma Shippy would be allowed to live in a Warren Wilson dorm, all student Jimmy Ning could ask was, “Did you guys vote on whether I could live here, too?” Born and raised in China, Ning was a stranger to racial discrimination. He was puzzled when his peers tried to explain why it was so controversial to live and learn alongside an African American, when no one had a problem enrolling an “Oriental boy from halfway around the world,” in his words. While the nation was struggling with the issue of racial equality, it seemed only natural for Ning and Shippy to become friends. They both shared an easygoing nature and a good sense of humor, with a bit of a mischievous streak. Ning recalls the many short-sheeting and midnight bed-tipping endeavors that Shippy instigated, and how Shippy could take a joke just as well as he could play
one. One of Ning’s favorite memories of his good friend took place over one Thanksgiving when Shippy invited him over for dinner. Ning got his first taste of pan-fried chicken, collard greens, grits, and biscuits as well as a glimpse into a culture radically different than his own. Ning felt the keystone of their friendship was the respect they had for each other as “human beings of two different races, cultures, and very different upbringings.” Life led the two friends in different paths and the two lost touch for almost 50 years. Ning remained active in Warren Wilson alumni events, and when he heard Shippy was living in Swannanoa again he quickly tracked him down and invited him as his guest to Homecoming. For three years, Ning drove Shippy to Homecoming, laughing about the old times the whole way. On Homecoming 2006, Shippy gave him a hug and his usual “Hey Buddy, see you next year” before departing, not
knowing it would be their last good-bye. Immediately after receiving word of his friend’s death, Ning and his classmates urged the College to create the Alma Shippy Scholarship Fund. They felt that Shippy’s acceptance and enrollment, a full five years before the ruling that opened schools in Topeka, Kansas, and around the country, could only have happened at a place like Warren Wilson. It saddened them that Shippy was unable to graduate because of finances and they hope the fund will enable other students to enrich the College like Shippy did. If you are interested in contributing to the Alma Shippy Scholarship Fund, contact J. Clarkson ’95, CFRE, at 828.771.3756 or email@example.com. Gifts may be mailed to CPO 6376, PO Box 9000, Asheville, NC 28815.
Warren Wilson College Archives
“Old Main” was the first building to be constructed for the newly created Asheville Farm School. Built over 15 months in 1893-94 for about $5,000, it was a rambling, four-story wooden structure that provided all the living and classroom space for students and teachers, including a kitchen and dining area, laundry and “shower baths.” During the Christmas break of 1914, Old Main burned to the ground, throwing the school’s future into doubt. In the end, the Board of Home Missions decided to continue the school, though with a smaller student body. Smaller, separate buildings for dorms, classrooms and teachers’ homes replaced the large, all-inclusive structure. —Diana Sanderson, WWC Archivist
A dependable income for life Did you know that a gift to Warren Wilson College might also bring more income to you? By establishing a gift annuity with Warren Wilson, you can make a meaningful gift to the College and receive a guaranteed income for life. Here are some sample rates for a single person annuity.
a legacy for generations
Age at establishment 63 64 65 66 67 68
to come Guaranteed rate for life 5.9 6.0 6.0 6.1 6.2 6.3
Rates are established by the American Council on Gift Annuities and are subject to change. Appreciated stocks or other assets can be used to set up an annuity while avoiding capital gains taxes. The Development Office would be happy to provide you with a personal, confidential illustration. Please contact Director of Development, J. Clarkson ’95, CFRE, at 866.992.6957 for more information.
Homecoming 2007 October 5-7 Homecoming is a time for you to return to Warren Wilson College and reconnect with classmates . . . and all that made your time here special. From the campuswide barbecue to receptions, dances, soccer games, reunion dinners and more, thereâ€™s plenty to do in the Swannanoa Valley.
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Published on Jun 1, 2007