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catalyst

news from Rockford University and beyond • fall 2015

rock solid & READY. THE CAMPAIGN FOR ROCKFORD UNIVERSITY


Greetings from the President inside this issue p4

reunion p6–7

graduate education spotlights p8

athletics p10

campaign: rock solid & ready p12

faculty news p16

class notes

Catalyst is published by the Communications and Alumni offices within the Institutional Advancement division. Letters to the editor, feedback and feature suggestions are welcome. Deadline for correspondence to be considered for the Spring 2016 issue is February 15.

The end of yet another semester, followed by a well-deserved holiday break for our students, is again abruptly upon us. As I reflect back on just the past few months, I am proud of all that has been accomplished by our students and greater campus community. If I allow myself another short pause, I’m quickly taken back to June of 2008 during my first days here in Rockford. Friends, I struggle to adequately put into words all of the memories, encounters, impressions, and emotions that come flooding to my mind. In an odd juxtaposition of feeling “like it’s been a lifetime” and “seems like just yesterday” all at the same time, I can easily express that I am profoundly grateful to serve as the 17th president of this remarkable institution. With an ever-present list of priorities, it is important to make sure we don’t miss the forest for the trees. We have had an eventful fall semester worthy of note. We began our 2015–2016 academic year by welcoming a growing presence of first-year and residential students, up 16 and 11 percent respectively from last year. In total, we reached a record high of 903 undergraduate students for fall 2015, reflecting a three percent increase. Growing in tandem with our domestic student population is the number of international students who have chosen to come to Rockford University. 80 students from 23 countries are represented on campus this fall. We also welcomed 25 professors and students from two Mexico City universities who studied here for 30 days as part of the merit scholar program, “Proyecta 100,000.” The initiative is part of the U.S.-Mexico Bilateral Forum on Higher Education, Innovation, and Research launched by U.S. President Barack Obama and Mexican President Enrique Peña Nieto. The program aims to expand economic opportunities for U.S. and Mexican citizens, develop a shared vision on educational cooperation, and boost student mobility and academic exchanges between the two countries. A robust Forum Series provided an impressive offering of guests and topics. A few highlights included a visit from Mike Singletary who spent the day on campus speaking to students and a capacity crowd in the evening about the importance of discipline, perseverance and personal accountability. He was a gracious and truly inspiring guest. I was honored to again host and facilitate the Connect2Peace panel discussion as part of the International Day of Peace. The event is an opportunity for our community at large to attend and reflect upon issues facing our community and world that impede our common aspiration for true peace and justice. We also celebrated the founding of the U.S.

Contact information: Office of Communications, 815.394.5041 or communications@rockford.edu.

Dr. Head speaks with media about the Rock Solid & Ready campaign elements.

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Baits honored with Outstanding Philanthropist award Rockford University proudly congratulates Dorothy Voss Baits ’51 and her late husband, Stephen Baits, for being selected by the Rockford Area Chapter of the Association of Fundraising Professionals and the National Philanthropy Day Committee as the 2015 award recipients of the Outstanding Philanthropist award. Dorothy was formally recognized during the National Philanthropy Day luncheon held on November 17, at Forest Hills Country Club in Loves Park, Ill. Former Bears player, NFL coach and Pro Football Hall of Fame member Mike Singletary talks to student-athletes during his campus visit.

Constitution, welcomed United States Poet Laureate Juan Felipe Herrera, and brought down the house with the production of “Seesaw.” We look forward to our spring series and welcome everyone to join us. October 8 was a monumental day for Rockford University. We proudly announced Rock Solid & Ready: The Campaign for Rockford University. Our public phase of this comprehensive campaign begins with gifts and pledges to-date totaling just over $11 million toward our goal of $17.3 million. Rock Solid & Ready will solidify our ability to succeed in this continuing era of progress. The campaign is currently ahead of target and well on track for a successful conclusion. In the coming years we will all need to advocate even more strongly for the advancement of this University and help create radiating circles of support that engage an increasing number of supporters. As you learn more about our capital initiative, I trust you will find a place in your heart to embrace its primary objective to enhance the student experience. More about our campaign announcement can be found on Pages 10–11. As I prepare to enter my last semester as President of Rockford University, I do so with tremendous pride and admiration for all that has been accomplished during my time here. I am also filled with optimism for the limitless potential that lies ahead. I thank each and every one of you who make Rockford University a stronger institution. Sincerely, President Robert L. Head, Ph.D.

National Philanthropy Day® (NPD) is a special day set aside in November to recognize the great contributions of philanthropy – and those people active in the philanthropic community – to the enrichment of our world. RU was pleased to nominate Dorothy and Steve as just one way to say “Thank You” for their life-long commitment of service in the community and in particular, to Rockford University. Dorothy graduated in 1951 with degrees in Mathematics and Physics. She earned her way into the Socratic Society, the College’s pre-Phi Beta Kappa honor society. During her time as a coed she met a young man from Michigan who was working as an engineer at Sundstrand (UTAS). On March 1, 1952, they were married in Talcott Chapel on the old Rockford College campus. Upon graduation Dorothy took on a leadership role, both in her class and for the institution, best exemplified by her 20-year tenure as a member/officer of the Alumni Association Board. Bringing Steve “along for the ride,” Dorothy always credits him for the flexibility she has had in her life to bring service to the University and other charities, along with the means with which to fulfill their charitable intent. His commitment to the University was acknowledged in 1993, being named an honorary alumnus. The depth of the Baits’ philanthropy has been felt throughout the community, but particularly felt by the Park District Foundation, the Natural Land Institute, Children’s Home and Aid and, following her adult son’s diagnosis, Leukemia and Lymphoma Society. VP of Institutional Advancement Bern Sundstedt ’77 shared as part of the nomination, “Dorothy Voss Baits is a dynamo who quietly works the city of Rockford around its periphery and of late can be found spending more than her fair share of time volunteering for the United Way’s, I Read program. She agreed to be nominated, ‘…only if I can be recognized along with Steve. He really cared about promoting philanthropy.’ It has been an honor to know Dorothy and Steve. I wish there were more people like them, not because of their philanthropic bent, but because more people should lead lives like theirs with service at the core of their hearts.”

Dorothy Voss Baits ’51 (right) pictured with Sheryl Head.

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“Oh, the Places You’ve Been!” Reunion @ Homecoming 2015

Class of 1965 Golden Grads (l–r): Albert Blum, Pat Zell Ranft, Pam Sherwood Whatley, Jennye Slick Hansen, Linda Tweed Wall, Pat Brauer Whittenberger, a peek at the top of Fred Young’s head behind Pat, Mary Norris Davis, Ron Balsam, Barb Eldredge Clucas, Mike Davis, Lucy Geyer Clark, Janie Hopson Anderson, John Herdklotz, Al Wales, Gloria Pritikin.

Alumni attending Reunion had the opportunity to “pin” the places they’ve been!


On October 9 & 10, 2015, more than 300 alumni and friends were welcomed back to campus – surrounded in Suess – for fun and reunion activities. Alumni from class years 1945 to 2015, and especially 1965, came to re-live the good ol’ days. Friday Fun A tapas lunch with alumni, trustees, faculty, staff and President and Mrs. Sheryl Head, kicked off festivities for the day. Coming all the way from Texas, Marjorie Olson Dome ’45 attended lunch with her family to celebrate her 70th class reunion from RC! Majorie is pictured on the left sharing memories with the Heads. The annual Alumni Association meeting followed with updates provided from RU leadership along with good questions and discussion on several relevant topics. Friday’s recognition dinner continues to be a highlight of the weekend. Several classes were represented to honor nine Rock Solid alumni with the annual Alumni Association awards. Recipients are recognized for their outstanding community work as well as their commitment to RU. Congratulations to the following: Awards of Distinction: Paul Callighan ’91 MBA, Dr. Michelle Colllins ’86, Blaire Fanning ’82, Julie Lynn O’Rourke ’91. Alumna/Alumnus of the Year: Laura Wilhelmi ’04. Mary Ashby Cheek Award: Dr. Robert L. & Sheryl Head. Outstanding Young Alumna/ Alumnus: James E. Ford ’09 MAT. Karl C. Williams Award: Fred Young ’65. Talcott Cross Award: Bettyann Pappenfus ’81. For more about these outstanding honorees visit, rockford.edu/alumni/awards. An after party in Grace Roper Lounge was a great way to end the evening. Everyone enjoyed the new space. Jared Blum, son of Albert Blum ’70, entertained guests by playing his trumpet. Saturday Celebrations The morning started with the Regent 5K Run/Walk. It was a beautiful day to see the campus and take in the fall air. The majority of the volunteers for the race were current students from Dr. Jason Hunter’s sport management classes. The annual tailgate tradition saw many alumni, along with friends and families, come together to reminisce about time spent at RU – and cheer on the Regents! The Golden Grad luncheon honored the class of 1965. 15 alumni were honored with medals, presented by President Head. Holding a seat of honor was Helen Mathre Anglemire ’45 who was able to attend and celebrate her 70-year class reunion. Another notable milestone for the class of ’65 comes in being the first class to graduate from the current RU campus. Given the option to be the last graduating class from the “old” campus or the first to graduate from the “new” campus, the pioneers of ’65 chose to be the first. Their presence was felt all weekend as they embraced the campus they called home for so many years.

Reflections from the class of 1965 Lucy Geyer Clark: Reunion was a blast. I think everyone had a good time – our classmates and the RU staff. Everyone there vowed to attend our 55th reunion in 2020. We had classmates from coast-to-coast: four from California and several from the East Coast. We even had a few from Rockford! A few haven’t changed much except for their hair color. The rest of us have gained a few pounds and some have left their hair to go from salt & pepper to grey to white. Janie Hopson Anderson: So why should you go to a 50th reunion? Especially if, like me, you never traveled to a previous one from a distant home? Go because you are curious about the campus and the current students! My classmates and I were amused to find the Burpee Center – brand new in our years – strangely familiar as its recent renovation restored much of its original configuration. The students we encountered were friendly, engaged and amused by our stories of the campus when the buildings were new, the trees were small (or nonexistent) and the buses hauled us between campuses. Go because you are curious about your classmates! We missed those not attending, but the 19 of us had a wonderful time reconnecting, sharing and remembering “when.” Those hours of reviving old memories and coming up with the names from 50 years ago were better for our brains than weeks of Sudoku and crossword puzzles! Go, more than anything else, for the laughter! We chuckled, we giggled and we roared! And maybe, just maybe, now that I have been on campus in modern times, I will remember to say “Rockford University!” Lyle Allen Wales: We are not who we were, but it helped shape who we have become. We see in the students mirrors of ourselves. We feel the promise. Perhaps we have become a little jaded, but feeling the buzz and having an idea of what growth is happening makes us feel that perhaps the world can be a little better. Certainly it does bring back memories of people, events, loves and mentors. It reminds us that time does march on and that enjoying those memories help make life a little fuller. Most of us spent four years at RC – more time than at some jobs, some marriages, or some homes. To reflect, to laugh, to relive, to unite, creates a new bond – and with our maturity, perhaps even a better one than those forged years ago. We all remembered the times when the “Golden Grads” were on campus and we couldn’t quite figure it out. We now know. Gloria A. Pritikin: Learning is a life-long joy which provides the spark and zest for each day! What were the unique influences making matriculation at RC such a transformative experience? In two words: faculty and family. Rockford College had an excellent faculty – wonderful teachers who knew their subjects deeply and passionately, and were able to bring knowledge in all of its varieties to life within us. Family – we grew up together, truly matured in an atmosphere of sharing, caring and learning. It wasn’t rote, but rather learning “how to think” and “how to learn.” For most of us, that learning became a LIFE-LONG passion in an infinite variety of areas. 5


Houselog hits ground running as new Director of Grad Programs in Education day of giving 2016: are you ready? Our first Day of Giving event was held on campus and online in April 2015. We joined a growing number of campuses across the nation who are using one-day giving events to provide an efficient way to engage donors via social media. Additionally, the event was used as an opportunity to educate students about the important role philanthropy plays in the overall success of the institution. We are thrilled to let you know that our second Day of Giving will be held on April 27, 2016! Our theme this year is #WeAreReady. We ARE ready to engage alumni and friends across the globe in support of Rockford University. Are you ready? Now is a great time to make sure we have your email address up-todate so you don’t miss out on any announcements, challenges or exciting photos and video that we will release throughout the day. Please send any updates to Meredith Stoll, Charter Fund Coordinator, at 815.226.3376 or mstoll@rockford.edu. Don’t forget to like us on Facebook, Twitter and Linkedin – that is where a lot of the day will unfold!

Michael Houselog, Ed.D., joined the University in August 2015, bringing with him more than 40 years of experience in education, most recently as the superintendent for Belvidere Community Unit School District #100 since 2007. As director of Graduate Programs in Education, Dr. Houselog’s focus will be on the development and oversight of the graduate programs in education, including recruitment and general marketing. Dr. Houselog will also be responsible for developing, monitoring and accessing programs that include Michael Houselog the University’s multiple license, endorsement, and other non-licensure tracks at the master’s level. Interim Provost Belinda Wholeben, Ed.D., notes, “Dr. Houselog’s years of experience as a superintendent, principal, and teacher are valuable assets that will enhance Rockford University’s ability to meet the dynamic needs of today’s educators. Rockford University looks forward to continued expansion of our graduate programs in education under Dr. Houselog’s direction.” One of Dr. Houselog’s first priorities is to implement a new online program that can address the region’s need within the English Language Learners (ELL) curriculum. A new online program for current teachers who wish to add to their existing credentials is expected to be available in the very near future. The English as a Second Language (ESL)/Bilingual program will lead to educators being able to earn a Master of Education (M.Ed.) degree in a self-paced online environment. The number of students enrolled in Illinois school districts who require ESL programs continues to increase and as a result, the needs for effective ESL and Bilingual educators increases accordingly. Dr. Houselog adds, “Rockford University has a long history of responding to these societal needs by offering coursework leading to teacher certification in ESL. Our outstanding education faculty, led by Department Chair and Education Unit Head Kimberlee Wagner, has kept a keen eye on this dynamic environment so that we are well-prepared to serve our area educators with this new and exciting program. Curriculum has been designed to introduce teachers to language development, the psychology of learning, and the effective construction of learning materials for ESL and Bilingual students. ESL/Bilingual is among the most demanding and challenging instructional areas in schools today. Nearly every problem English language learners face is magnified by limitations to their ability to consume and produce high-quality English.” Dr. Houselog received his Bachelor of Arts in Education from Loras College; his master’s degree in Administration from Clarke University; an Ed.S (Education Specialist) in Educational Administration from Drake University and his Ed.D (Doctorate in Education) in Leadership in Administration from George Williams College of Aurora University. Dr. Houselog is active in leadership positions with several area professional and community organizations including SwedishAmerican Hospital Board of Directors Parent Board, the Belvidere YMCA, the Belvidere Area Chamber of Commerce, and Growth Dimensions of Boone County.

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program highlight: master of arts in teaching (mat) Since 1952, the Master of Arts in Teaching (MAT) program at Rockford University has been shaping leaders and innovators in the education field. Graduates of the program have achieved recognition at the local and national level, including James Ford ’09 MAT who was named the 2014 North Carolina Teacher of the Year. James entered the program to advance his dream of teaching, but for others who have gone through the program, becoming a teacher might not have been their first dream. Scott Dimke ’97/’12 first graduated from Rockford University with a bachelor’s degree in Business Administration. After working for 12 years in a corporate setting, he was ready for a change. “I felt that I wanted something more stable and something where I would feel like I made a difference in Rockford. I had Scott Dimke ’97/’12 always been teaching in one way or another my whole life (horseback riding instructor, ski instructor, trainer, etc.) so it was something that I knew I enjoyed and that I knew I would do well in,” said Scott. When deciding to pursue his MAT degree, Scott chose Rockford University because of the reputation RU has for educating great teachers. After earning a master’s degree in Educational Administration from Northern Illinois University and then his Master of Arts in Teaching from RU, he started teaching at Jefferson High School in Rockford. Scott goes on to add, “Due to the kind of education and background I had, I was able to do many wonderful things as a beginning teacher in the [Rockford Public School

2015] district. I was able to help develop, and for the past two years lead, the district’s ACT Prep program that has grown from 50 students three years ago to almost 500. All prospective students should know that you will be experiencing a high caliber of instructors and material. All of my classes were applicable in the real world and the instructors often had direct experience in the category that they were instructing.” MAT students experience courses that are designed to provide practical, up-to-date teaching strategies. The program has a 32-credit-hour thesis option and a 36-credit-hour non-thesis option available. Three different licensure tracks are available, as well as two non-licensure tracks. Most students complete the program in two to three years. Of the program’s seven full-time faculty members, all are professionally and personally involved in the Rockford area and hold Illinois teaching certificates. Many are consultants for area school districts, and have been recognized as specialists in their field of study. All have practical and applied experience in their field of study and teaching. “The two professors that pushed me the most were Professors JoEllen Vause and Dr. Susan Smith. They both instilled a sense of responsibility in me that will never be forgotten. To them, it wasn’t enough to just be a teacher, we were there to impact and change the future for every student that we would interact with.” More information about the MAT program at Rockford University can be found at www.rockford.edu/admission/ graduate/mat.

Presidential Search Update Rockford University obtained the services of HyattFennel, a national search firm, to assist in the search for RU’s 18th president. Cheryl Hyatt, partner, spent time at the University in early September to conduct extensive interviews and open sessions with the entire campus community so that everyone had the opportunity to provide their input. The application process for the position closed in late-October and the search committee will be proceeding with candidate reviews over the course of the next few months. A late-February time frame has been established to complete the entire process and select President Head’s successor. 7


a different kind of stat for student-athletes Being a student-athlete at RU involves more than just dedicating your time and energy to the sports you love; it also allows several opportunities to give back to the community. The Rockford University athletic department encourages all of its teams to get involved and lend a hand whenever the opportunity presents itself. Taking time away from the competition field has become a tradition that student-athletes look forward to each and every year. The Athletic department as a whole has already begun collecting items for the annual Cans Across the Conference competition among the 12 members of the Northern Athletics Collegiate Conference. Regents have won the competition twice and collected more than 1,000 items in each of the last seven years. This past year, the Athletic department gathered 1,032 items, all of which were donated to the Northern Illinois Food Bank. Men’s soccer began their season not with a practice, but by volunteering for the Habitat for Humanity ReStore. Rockford’s 21 players and two coaches arrived early in the morning at the ReStore, ready to lend a hand. The Regents were split into two groups, with the first on warehouse duty and the other put to work in the front of the store helping organize the new 8

materials for sale. “It truly was a great experience for our newcomers and returners to lend a hand and give back to the community,” Head Coach Jeremy Vann stated. “I am very proud of my players for all of their hard work as well as volunteering their time to help a truly worthy cause. Rockford University is an institution that prides itself on giving back, and I am happy these young men understood that their efforts were appreciated.” The football team took time away from the gridiron during its pre-season camp to volunteer with the Rockford Housing Authority. All of the Regents returners, along with members of the coaching staff, spent a day helping paint fences for housing units on the west side of the city. “This was an exciting and rewarding experience for our student-athletes,” Head Football Coach Jim Schroeder stated. “We were fortunate to have the opportunity to support the local community in a meaningful way while at the same time growing as a team and as people.” The Men’s basketball team spent a day donating their time at the Rockford Public School District 205 Coaching Clinic. The clinic featured multiple collegiate coaches speaking to local youth basketball coaches as members of the team demonstrated how to execute drills.


Clockwise from top left: Regents baseball student-athletes assist with Special Olympics; women’s basketball student-athletes participate in Making Strides Against Breast Cancer Walk; and Regents baseball player Thomas Bolen helps local elementary students with reading.

“It is always a privilege for our program to be able to help whenever we can,” RU Head Coach Andrew Weber ’10/’12 commented. “This was a rewarding experience for our student-athletes on many levels. In addition to being able to help out and support a noble cause, it was also a great learning experience for many of them who want to be coaches in the future.” On a cold blustery day in the middle of October, the Regents women’s basketball team braved the weather and volunteered at the Making Strides Against Breast Cancer Walk. The women began by greeting the participants at the event, and then provided encouragement as they cheered them on along the course. “This year’s walk was once again a success and a great opportunity for our team to be a part of our larger community,” said Head Women’s Basketball Coach Jessica Stanek. “We will continue to volunteer at this event because it supports a truly worthy cause that fights against a disease affecting so many people.”

Explore Your Options at Your Convenience! There are many ways to make an impact at Rockford University, and we want to help you plan a gift that fits your long-term goals. Our new pages put the gift planning resources you need at your fingertips. You will be able to: • Find the right gift for you based on your age, assets, or the amount you would like to give. • Learn about ways to give and how to fund your gift. • Download brochures and watch videos on popular types of gifts. • See your potential tax benefits with our Gift Illustrator. • Get your plans in motion with our Personal Estate Planning Kit. Visit legacy.rockford.edu today to start planning your legacy!

The baseball team continued to follow the NCAA Division III initiative of partnering with the Special Olympics when the Regents volunteered at the Special Olympics Volleyball Regional Championships for the ninth year. Rockford had a total of thirty-one players there lending a hand as ball chasers, scoreboard operators, and helping out with the skills participation part of the event. “This is a very cool opportunity for our players to be able to volunteer with the Special Olympics,” Head Baseball Coach Bob Koopmann commented. “After speaking with multiple players who volunteered at the event, it did not matter which job they were doing or if they were just talking and interacting with the participants, they all had a blast. This is one of the events the RU baseball team helps out with that the players really look forward to being involved with.” Those are some of the volunteer opportunities and ways that student-athletes have helped make a difference this fall. “Rockford University athletics is dedicated to developing responsible leaders and citizens in the greater Rockford community,” Rockford University Director of Athletics Kristyn King ’89 stated. “We encourage our programs to do their part to make a difference in the Rock River area, and I am pleased with the efforts that our coaches and student-athletes have put forth to positively reflect Rockford University by serving others.”

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Introducing Rock Solid & Ready: The Campaign for Rockford University An impressive gathering of alumni, friends, community leaders, students, and University employees joined Board of Trustee Chairman Thomas A. Muldowney ’74, President Robert L. Head, and Campaign Chairman James Keeling on October 8, 2015, for the official public announcement and launch of Rockford University’s first comprehensive capital campaign in nearly two decades. With a $17.3 million goal, Rock Solid & Ready: The Campaign for Rockford University seeks to sustain and support the University’s ongoing transformational process and to set the stage for a continued era of progress. Rock Solid & Ready is comprised of three primary categories that will more firmly establish a top-notch experience in and out of the classroom from which students can learn and grow. The University will Compete by shaping modern facilities, Create by enhancing the student experience, and Commit by providing for current needs. To date, $11.2 million has been received in pledge commitments and outright contributions. Highlights of the University’s progress include: • Since 2007, $14 million has been invested in capital improvements throughout the campus, including the renovations to the Burpee Student Center and Seaver Physical Education Centers. • Total Net Assets have risen from $6 million in FY 2009 to $24.2 million in Fiscal Year 2015. • Undergraduate enrollment is at an all-time high with 903 students enrolled this fall; up nearly nine percent from 2013 and reflective of a 23 percent net increase since 2006. • We continue to enjoy positive acclaim from Princeton Review – and from the US News & World Report as a tier one Midwest university. • According to a study conducted by Economic Modeling Specialists, Rockford University generates a $118 million impact on the region’s economy each year. • All told, over the past nine years the University has raised and used more than $14 million for the capital purchases of fixed assets – and on June 30, 2015, (along with the caveat that financial statements for FY15 are not yet officially audited) the ninth consecutive fiscal year with a positive operating income was concluded. Referring to the work accomplished since 2008, President Head noted, “Rolling up our sleeves, we all worked hand-in-hand, taking purposeful steps to reach beyond ourselves. We 10


Let’s Get Physical Gala 2016 On Saturday, February 20, 2016, Rockford University will be holding its annual gala. Aptly named, “Let’s Get Physical,” this year’s gala focuses on the improvements needed to the physical education facilities.

redoubled our efforts to broaden our positive reputation and make widely known for all students (current and future) the true nature and powerful impact that a Rockford University education has had on those who have received it. We were confident that our institution was valuable, relevant and needed – and that has proven to be true.”

Campaign Elements Compete: Shaping Modern Facilities Work includes $1.2 million for select modernizations of Starr Science Center and $6 million for the creation of a new Athletic and Event Center to be constructed just west of the Seaver Physical Education Center. When Seaver was constructed in 1964 before the nationwide establishment of women’s intercollegiate sports, it was the envy of many. It no longer serves current needs by itself and its capacity has been outgrown. Students also expect and deserve the kinds of modern amenities that the new center will provide. In a similar fashion, many elements of the Starr Science Center were cutting edge upon its construction. Over time, while still able to keep pace with technological advances in several other classroom buildings, the simple functionality of Starr has lagged. These upgrades will impact nearly every student at Rockford University. Create: Enhancing the Student Experience The Student Opportunity Funds (the first endowed with $1 million dollars and the other a $1 million expendable fund) will be established to help offset the rising costs of those unique opportunities for learning made possible through activities like student/faculty research and field study. Additionally $4.1 million will be dedicated to enhancements of the academic program. Already embedded in the campaign totals is a gift to establish the Puri Business School. Throughout the campaign, the University will work diligently to carefully create and seek support for additional, transformational gifts that establish or enhance academic programs.

With record enrollment pushing our fifty-year-old Seaver Gymnasium past maximum capacity, offering facilities, practice space for our sports teams and an intramural experience for our student body has become strained. As with our previous galas, this is expected to be a fun night. This year’s dress code is “Athletic Chic.” So leave those stilettos and top hats at home and trade them in for sneakers and ball caps. This is a fantastic event that shouldn’t be missed. For more information, contact Carla Potter at 815.394.5111 or alumni@rockford.edu.

Commit: Providing for Current Needs A vital part of any comprehensive campaign is the institution’s annual Charter Fund. Rock Solid & Ready is no different. Supporting students today through sustained operational support, while simultaneously looking toward the future is responsible and admirable; RU will sustain that activity with a $4 million commitment. We invite you to learn more about Rock Solid & Ready, view the special campaign video and facility renderings, and stay abreast of the latest news and developments by typing ready.rockford.university in your browser and visiting the campaign website. You will also find links to Rock Solid & Ready via rockford.edu. 11


faculty notes & student news Timm Adams, associate professor of Music, is on sabbatical for Fall 2015 to direct, music direct, and perform in Pump Boys & Dinettes at the Chestnut Fine Arts Center in the Kansas City area. In addition to this show that ran through October, he worked with two high schools in the Kansas City area to conduct audition workshops and prepare students for upcoming auditions and competitions. From Kansas City, Adams travels to New York City, Shenandoah Conservatory, Pump Boys & Dinettes, Timm and Penn State University Adams pictured at far right. to conduct research on vocal pedagogy for musical theater voice, which is his primary focus at RU. John Burns, Ph.D., Department of Modern and Classical Languages and Religion chair, global faculty fellow, and associate professor of Spanish, participated in the Eighth Annual Lecture Series at the University of Maine campus on September 17. His presentation was titled “Aesthetic of the Rain: Translating the Work of Contemporary Chilean Poet Raúl Hernández.” Dr. Burns’ talk on English translations of Chilean poet Raúl Hernández featured critical 12

reflections on the practice of literary translation and were interspersed with a concise overview of contemporary Chilean poetry and readings of some of Hernández’s work in translation. Dr. Burns has also accepted an invitation to become a permanent board member of the journal Confluencia, a journal on Spanish language, literature and culture. Mehmet Dik, Ph.D., professor of Mathematics, has completed two book proposal reviews: “Zweier I-Convergent Sequence Spaces and Their Properties,” Mathematics & Statistics, Springer, 2015; and “Discrete Methods in Functional Analysis,” Mathematics at CRC Press, Taylor and Francis Group, 2015. Dr. Dik also continues to referee and review several research papers for a variety of industry journals. Jeff Fahrenwald, associate professor of Economics, Business and Accounting, and director of the MBA program, is completing 10 cases that will be included in a new text book entitled Operations Management: A Supply Chain Approach by Joel Wisner to be published in 2016 by Sage Publications. Professor Fahrenwald was also one of the reviewers for this text book. He made a presentation to the local Financial Executives group on Leadership Forecasting and continues to work with Transform Rockford and Alignment Rockford, along with serving as a consultant for all of SupplyCore’s businesses, which include Rocktown Adventures, MPOWR, SupplyCore Logistics and JJP Development.


Ina Freeman, Ph.D., associate professor of Economics, Business and Accounting has a new publication: Shandong Province and Tourism: An Examination of World Heritage Sites, Freeman, I. & Sun, H. (2015). Jules Gleicher, Ph.D., professor of Political Science, attended the annual meeting of the American Political Science Association in San Francisco. He chaired a panel on the works and legacy of Professor Walter F. Berns, and attended panels on a variety of other topics. Dr. Gleicher also represented Rockford University’s chapter of Phi Beta Kappa at PBK’s 44th Triennial Council in Denver in October, and attended lectures on Darwin, ancient astronomy, and linguistics at the University of Chicago’s annual Humanities Day. Jacob Hardesty, Ph.D., assistant professor of Education, has had an article recently accepted for the journal History of Education Quarterly, along with a book chapter included in a recently released edited volume “Learning the Left: Popular Culture, Liberal Politics, and Informal Education from 1900 to the Present” (Information Age Press). Dr. Hardesty has also accepted an invitation to be on the editorial board of the Journal of Historical Research in Music Education. Professor of Philosophy Steven Hicks, Ph.D., reports the following articles: “Virtue, Entrepreneurial Ethics, and Corporate Social Responsibility” in Virtue in Entrepreneurship, edited by Nils Karlson, Mikolaj Norek and Karl Wennberg, Stockholm: Ratio Institute, 2015; “How Can We Make Entrepreneurs?” in Shawn Klein (ed.), Steve Jobs and Philosophy,

Open Court, 2015, pp. 53–66; “Educating for Entrepreneurship,” translated into Polish and published in Przeglad Pedagogiczny, Fall 2015. Dr. Hicks has also presented the following lectures: “Entrepreneurship and Corporate Social Responsibility,” keynote address, Nanjing University, Nanjing, China, July 30, 2015; “The Next Revolution in Art,” keynote address, Hong Kong Polytechnic University, Hong Kong, July 26, 2015 (lecture translated into Cantonese); “How Revolutions Are Won or Lost,” keynote address, F.R.I. Buenos Aires, Argentina, June 25, 2015; “The Three Best Arguments against Liberal Capitalism,” invited lecture, Atlas Summit, Manchester, N.H., June 20, 2015.

faculty & student news

Associate Professor of Philosophy Matt Flamm, Ph.D., will be chairing the annual meeting of the George Santayana Society at the Eastern Meeting of the American Philosophical Association, Washington D.C., in January 2016. Dr. Flamm will also chair a session of the George Santayana Society at the annual meeting of the Society for the Advancement of American Philosophy in March. As residing president of the George Santayana Society, Dr. Flamm finalized editing the next edition of Overheard in Seville: The Bulletin of the Santayana Society, to be released by November 2015. He notes that it “includes a fine essay on Santayana’s interpretation of Shakespeare by RU’s own Dr. William Gahan!”

Dr. Joel Lynch’s article “An Experimental Investigation into Judgment and Behavioral Implications of Disability-Based Stereotypes in Simulated Work Decisions: Evidence of Shifting Standards” has been published in the Journal of Applied Social Psychology. Dr. Lynch is associate professor of Psychology and chair, Department of Psychology.

Professor of Classics Don Martin, Ph.D., has published a translation of a novel, set in Greece during the Second World War, by George Theotokas, Invalids and Wayfarers (original title in Greek Astheneis kai Odoiporoi). Dr. Martin has also translated Leonis by Theotokas.

David Menard, associate professor of Art, has had work featured in several exhibits throughout the country including shows in Los Angeles, Chicago, and internationally in London. Professor Menard also exhibits regularly in Rockford at the annual Faculty Exhibit held at the Rockford University Art Gallery; along with shows at the Rockford Art Museum and J.R. Kortman Gallery.

Professor of English Susan Porterfield, Ph.D., won the Cider Press Review Editor’s Prize for poetry which results in the publication of her manuscript, “Dirt, Root, Silk.” The book will appear in 2016. Dr. Porterfield’s other works include Kibbe (Mayapple Press) and a chapbook, Beirut Redux (Finishingline). She is the editor of Zen, Poetry, the Art of Lucien Stryk (Ohio UP) and has written on Stryk for Poets & Writers as well as AWP’s The Writer’s Chronicle. She has received an Illinois Arts Council Award for Poetry and is the associate poetry editor of Fifthwednesday Journal. (continued on p14)

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RU welcomes the following new faculty members. Lisa Bott, assistant professor of Education. Professor Bott was previously an assistant elementary school principal. She earned her bachelor’s degrees from Lakehead University and University of Ottawa, and completed her Master of Education at Brock University, Ontario, Canada. Helen Lawhorn, assistant professor of Nursing. Professor Lawhorn earned her bachelor’s and master’s degrees from Olivet Nazarene University. She previously served as a manager at SwedishAmerican Health Systems. Marilen Loyola, Ph.D., assistant professor of Spanish. Dr. Loyola comes to Rockford University after serving as a lecturer and humanities institute fellow at the University of Texas at Austin. Dr. Loyola earned her bachelor’s degree from University of Michigan. She holds dual master’s degrees along with her doctorate from the University of Wisconsin – Madison. Charles Nelson, associate professor and department chair of Computer Science. Professor Nelson was previously an adjunct instructor at Rock Valley College. He earned his bachelor’s degree at Austin Peay State University and his master’s degree at Northern Illinois University.

(continued from p13)

Over the summer months, Stephanie Quinn, Ph.D., associate professor of Modern and Classical Languages, was part of a 13-day study tour for classicists and classics students of the antiquities in the Naples area. Led by an archeologist, the group visited Pompeii and Herculaneum, climbed Vesuvius, visited several islands in the Bay of Naples for very early Greek sites, visited Paestum south of Naples and 6th- and 5th-century Greek temples as well as Etruscan remains and the Roman city. Dr. Quinn also traveled to the Getty Center and Villa in and around Los Angeles this fall for an exhibition of bronze 14

Luis Romero ’01, associate professor of Economics, Business and Accounting. Professor Romero joins the faculty after serving as the director of the master’s program in Financial Management at Sergio Arboleda University in Bogota, Colombia. Professor Romero earned his bachelor’s degree at Pontificia Universidad. He holds master’s degrees from Rockford University and Florida International University. Deepshikha Shukla, Ph.D., associate professor of Physics. Dr. Shukla was formerly a visiting assistant professor at University of North Carolina – Greensboro. Dr. Shukla received her bachelor’s degree from Cotton College in Guwahati, India. She received her master’s degree from Indian Institute of Technology in New Delhi, India, and her doctorate from Ohio University. Gidget Tay, Ph.D., assistant professor of Chemistry. Dr. Tay earned her bachelor’s degree from University of California – San Diego, and her doctorate from University of California – Irvine. She previously was the head teaching assistant in the general chemistry laboratory at University of California – Irvine. Roger Villamar, Ph.D., assistant professor of Anthropology and Sociology. Dr. Villamar was previously an adjunct faculty member at University of South Florida. He earned his bachelor’s degree from William Paterson University, his master’s degree from Montclair State University and his doctorate degree from University of South Florida.

sculptures from the period just after Alexander the Great, when realistic portraiture was being developed. The Getty Villa is a scale reproduction of one of the houses buried at Herculaneum, providing a visceral feeling for the way rich Romans lived. Dr. Quinn is excited to be able to integrate these experiences into her classes. Associate Professor of Physical Education and Department Chair Tammy Schiek ’87 presented “Give Me a Break: Integrating Activity into the Classroom” at the Raising Student Achievement (RSAC) Conference in St. Charles, Ill., on December 7, 2015.


Sarah Simmons, adjunct professor of voice in the Performing Arts department, continues her work with the “Songs By Heart Foundation.” She works alongside the founders (world renown sopranos Nancy Gustafson and Sylvia McNair) to connect people with memory loss to the language and joy of music. Simmons is also a member of The Irving Sisters, a female trio dedicated to the preservation and performance of the American Song Book. (l–r) Lynn Stafford, Peter Najem, Andrew Miller.

Associate Professor of Education Lynn Stafford ’14 MAT, along with students Peter Najem and Andrew Miller presented “Intensive Intervention and Instruction: Where Does it Occur in Service Delivery?” at the Illinois Council for Exceptional Children Conference on Nov. 6., 2015. The presentation was the culmination of student-faculty research and represents a yearlong effort that began with submission of a proposal to the conference, acceptance and full-circle research, development and presentation at the state professional conference. All attended the entire conference which focused on “Special Education: Exceptional Children Need Exceptional Teachers.” Assistant Professor of English Kyle Stedman, Ph.D., has published 11 episodes of his monthly podcast on teaching writing and rhetoric in the 21st century, “Plugs, Play, Pedagogy.” The show is described as playful with a lot of guests, with past episodes focusing on creative writing, attending to where we write, teaching students to use audio recording and editing software, and using games in the classroom, among lots of other topics. It’s hosted on the website for one of the most well-known free writing textbooks, Writing Commons, and is also available on iTunes and other podcast directories.

Assistant Professor of Chemistry Gidget Tay, Ph.D., recently published a paper in a peer-reviewed chemical education journal, done in collaboration with the University of California – Irvine, called The Journal of Chemical Education. At a recent Rock River American Chemical Society (ACS) meeting, Dr. Tay presented the talk “The Silyl Enol Ether Prins Cyclization: Application to the Total Synthesis of Cyanolide A.”

faculty & student news

Deepshikha Shulka, Ph.D., associate professor of Physics, was inducted into Sigma Xi, a research honor society. She is also STEM coordinator and board member for AAUW (American Association of University Women), Rockford branch. Dr. Shulka presented a talk “Introducing Research Problems in Theoretical Physics to Undergraduate Students” at the Illinois Section of AAPT (American Association of Physics Teachers) at Millikin University, Decatur, Ill.

Cheryl A. Troxel ’04, RN, MSN, assistant professor of Nursing and faculty chair of the Department of Nursing was the featured speaker at the Stateline Nurses Network where she presented “Methamphetamines: the Past, Present and Future.” She is also a member of American Nurses Association, National League of Nursing, and Sigma Theta Tau: Phi Omicron Chapter in Rockford. Assistant Professor of English Tara Wood, Ph.D., presented a paper entitled “Who’s Listening? Who Can Speak?: Disabled Survivors of Sexual Assault” at the 2015 Feminisms and Rhetorics Conference in Tempe, Ariz., on October 28. Additionally, Dr. Wood and Assistant Professor of French Sharon Bartlett, Ph.D., attended the National Women’s Studies Association Conference in Milwaukee, Wis., to participate in the pre-conference workshop titled “Program Administration and Development Pre-Conference (PAD).”

Director of Early Childhood Education and Assistant Professor of Education Robin Miller Young, Ed.D., was invited to conduct two sessions at the RtI Innovations Conference on October 21–22 in Rosemont, Ill. Session titles were “Delivering ’Magical’ Core Instruction in Early Childhood Education Programs/Schools;” and “Coaching and Professional Learning Communities (PLCs) to Scale-up ’Magical’ Core Instruction in ECE Programs/Schools.” This is Dr. Young’s fourth year as an invited presenter. Additionally, she conducted the session “Multi-Tiered Systems of Support (RtI) in Early Childhood: A data-based tiered instructional model for the Illinois Administrators Academy” co-sponsored by the Illinois Principals Association (IPA) and the Illinois Instructional Resource Center (IRC), Center on Professional Development in Early Childhood (EC). She also conducted a doctoral online seminar on “Leadership Practices for Early Interventionists and Early Childhood Special Educators” for the Division for Early Childhood (DEC). Her work is helping to prepare the next generation of leaders in the early childhood field.

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class notes Marcia Cohn Spiegel ’49 had her first great-grandchild, Martin Rae Jackson. Martin was born to her granddaughter Sharon Allen and her partner, Rhett Jackson, in Portland, Ore., August 2014. Shirley Martignoni Fedeli ’57 was granted the Ordine della Stella d’italia Award. This award was presented by the Chicago Consul General of Italy, Adriano Monti, and conferred by the president of Italy, Sergio Mattarella. Shirley was given this award for her involvement in uplifting the Italian culture in the area. Her involvement with Festa Italiana in Rockford, where she set up the culture tent at the event for 20 years; development of the Amici Italiani Folk Dance Troup; and serving as a charter member and then president of the Ethnic Heritage Museum in Rockford, Ill., helped her win this honor. With this new award, Shirley is now referred to as Cavaliere Shirley Martignoni Fedeli. Roland Poska ’61, aka Fishy Whale, gathered with other “great human beings” on July 4, 2015, for a moment of interdependence with the world. The event was part of the “(great) Human Race Initiative,” which strives to make the impossible possible: end prejudice, end violence and achieve respect for all throughout the world. His goal is that “A Perfect Day,” will occur Nov. 1, 2077. However, he believes we can create our own “Perfect Day” well before then by ridding ourselves of prejudice and violence, and treating others as we would like to be treated. Jean Schmeling ’63 has translated her book, Miracle Dreams from my Daughter in Heaven, into French. The book was inspired by her daughter who passed away much too early from terminal cancer. The book is a grieving mother’s story of facing cancer with her brave, and tough, loving daughter…and then attempting to go on living, loving, and giving. In addition to the book, Jean also translated 20 more of her poems with her wildlife photos. Tyler Segar ’64 has published a book entitled If Your Telephone Isn’t Working, Please Call the Office. Tyler writes under a pen name of J.T. Victor. Paul Dale Anderson ’67 Rockford author pens Instruments of Death Series: Gordian Knot Mysteries and Crossroad Press published two new titles in Paul Dale Anderson’s Instruments of Death series of police procedurals. Meat Cleaver and Axes to Grind were both published as original e-books on May 4, 2015. Paul recently appeared on two panels at the 2015 Bram Stoker Awards and World Horror Convention in Atlanta. He is the chair of the HWA Bram Stoker Awards Long Fiction Jury. Paul’s website is www.pauldaleanderson.net.

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Dee-Dee Patrick ’70, MS, RN, CARN, was elected to be on the board of directors for the Central Arizona Chapter of the Colon Cancer Alliance. She resides in the Phoenix area six months out of the year and volunteers with this organization during the late fall and winter months and remotely from the Chicago area during the spring and summer months. She is a colon cancer survivor since 2007. David (Gino) Cox ’73 is still living in Asia. He recently published a second mystery, Presumed Guilty, and a book of Sudoku strategies. His children continue to flourish. Alessandro Giovanni is now six-months-old and is trying to crawl. Dion Eugenio Francis is four and learning his alphabet and numbers. Their half-brother Jason Matthew is doing well on the other side of the globe. Brent Johnson ’74 founder of Midwest Aero Support, Inc., celebrated the company’s 25th anniversary on Sept. 3, 2015. Shelton Kay ’77 was named Vice President of Community Relations for Crusader Community Health. He is also a member of the Crusader Executive Management Team. Currently he serves as the Chairman of the Homeless Task Force and is an active member of Transform Rockford. He also received the Ramona Lopez Community Health Center Employee Award at the Illinois Primary Health Care Associations Annual Leadership Conference, October 2015. Dr. Steven Manson ’78 was named the Wisconsin Medical Society’s Physician Citizen of the Year for 2015. This annual award recognizes Wisconsin physicians who volunteer their time and talents to improve their communities with civic, economic, and charitable services. He was recognized for his service: providing much-needed health care to the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation in South Dakota. Dr. Manson has also been voted as the best pediatrician by the “Best of LaCrosse Magazine,” LaCrosse, Wis. Gayle Carey Ogborn ’80 recently hosted several RU friends at her home and a good time was had by all. Pictured (l–r): Rebecca Roberts ’80, Deb Fredricks ’80, Janet Haass Zelenka ’80, Lee VanDeWostine-Nelson ’81, Lynn Hardy Smith ’80, and Gayle Carey Ogborn ’80. Rebecca “Becky” Roberts ’80 retired from a 40-year career in retail in 2013, sold her home of 22 years in Indiana, and bought a condo in West Bend, Wis. This allows her to be close to family in Rockford. Catherene Martin ’82 has retired from the Harlem School District, but still remains active in the district. Doug Muir ’86 has spent most of the past 15 years working for USAID, the World Bank and other international donor organizations. He has lived and worked in Serbia, Romania, Kosovo, Armenia, Moldova, the West Bank, and Lebanon. He is currently living in Dushanbe, Tajikistan, where he runs the


United Nations’ Rule of Law and Access to Justice Program. Doug is married and has four children. He’d be happy to hear from former classmates. Dr. Tracy Coleman ’88 was promoted to full Professor of Religion at Colorado College. Michael J. Davis ’91/’00 and Rachel Ruiz ’03 were married October 31, 2015, in Fisher Chapel and the reception was held in Regents Hall. Charlene Ceci ’97 was married to William “Chris” Byars on April 4, 2014, in a small private ceremony at the Church by the Side of the Road in Rockton, Ill. They reside in the Chicago suburbs. Laura Juhl ’97/’02 earned an Ed.S. at the University of Arkansas at Little Rock in 2009 and most recently, a Ph.D. in Reading Education at the University of Arkansas at Little Rock in 2014. Dr. Juhl’s dissertation was selected as a finalist for the 2015 International Literacy Association Dissertation Award. Linda D. Taylor ’97, Ph.D., MSN, BSN, BS, RN, has been named Dean of Nursing at Fortis College in Cutler Bay, Fla. Aaron Potter ’98/’09 has been promoted to vice president, financial planning and analysis, at Bergstrom, Inc. where he will be responsible for creating and driving the planning and analysis processes. He joined Bergstrom in 2005 and is currently an adjunct professor of Finance for the MBA program at Rockford University. Aaron Nester ’04/’06 has been named head coach for women’s basketball at Lakeland College in Wisconsin. Aaron recently served as the assistant women’s basketball coach at Central College and was head coach at Oglethorpe University in Georgia for 3 seasons. He also was an assistant coach at Wartburg College from 2006–11 and Rockford University from 2002–06. Elisabette (Lisa) Waichunas ’05 MAT is the new managing director at the premiere professional actor’s training ground, Chicago Actors Studio.

Tiana Cooper McCall ’09 was named “Young Leader on the Rise” at the 2015 Black Leaders to Watch Awards in Rockford, Ill., Aug. 28. Tiana was recognized for her involvement with the Wabongo Leadership Council. Jennifer Jenkins ’09 was awarded the 2015 Excellence in Teaching Award which is given to one full-time and one adjunct RU professor each year. Jennifer is an adjunct professor in English. Dorota Gibala ’10 has been chosen as the 2015 recipient of the Outstanding Young Attorney Award by the Illinois Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers. She currently is an assistant public defender for Winnebago County, Ill. Michelle Faye Cassaro ’11 was hired in May 2015 as the new Chief Financial Officer of the Chicago Rockford International Airport. She previously was the CFO for the Rockford Housing Authority and holds a BS in management studies from Rockford University. She is currently enrolled in the MBA program at RU. Amanda Sisney ’11 currently working as an associate scientist of microbiology at PPD Laboratories in Madison, Wis. Steven Foster ’12 was named “Leading Black Men” at the 2015 Black Leaders to Watch Awards in Rockford on Aug. 28. Steven is an engineering manager at United Technologies Corporation. Michael Flynn ’12 MBA has joined Super Mix Concrete in McHenry, Ill., as a sales representative. Cindy Vondran ’13 was September’s featured artist at the Beloit Fine Arts Incubator, Beloit, Wis. Cindy is an award-winning photographer who resides in Rockton, Ill. Nichole Grayned ’14 was named “Young Leader on the Rise” at the 2015 Black Leaders to Watch Awards in Rockford on Aug. 28. Nichole is a human resources client manager at UTC Aerospace Systems. Martesha Brown ’15 was named “Young Leader on the Rise” at the 2015 Black Leaders to Watch Awards in Rockford on Aug. 28. Martesha is the operations manager for Magic Waters and Carlson Ice Arena, Rockford Park District, Rockford, Ill.

Rosemarie Brubaker ’08 was named the Superintendent of Aquin Catholic Schools, Freeport, Ill. William Rose ’08 received the Academy Staff of the Year Award by Alignment Rockford, July 2015. Bill won the honor for his work as a teacher in business, arts, and modern world languages; Information Technology Academy (BAMIT) team leader; and business and social studies teacher at East High School. The Academy awards recognize exemplary service within the college and career academies of Rockford, and outstanding work by teachers and community members within and working to support the academies in RPS 205.

Share your GOOD NEWS with us! Please send updates to alumni@rockford.edu. Pictures also welcome!

Jay Sandine ’08 has been appointed as the Assistant Executive Director of the Rockford Park District.

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Alumni Association Board Update The Alumni Association Board held its annual meeting on Friday, October 9, during Reunion@Homecoming. Interim Board President Courtney Geiger ’02 provided an overview of the Board and its missions and goals for the upcoming year which include working collaboratively to increase alumni engagement with current students, increase board presence on campus, and create other opportunities to further the institution. Joining President Head to provide additional updates were members of the University’s Executive Council: Senior Vice President of Business & Chief Financial Officer Christina Anderson ’05 MBA, Interim Vice President of Academic Affairs and Provost and Professor of Psychology Dr. Belinda Wholeben, and Vice President for Institutional Advancement Bernard Sundstedt ’77.

Two additional members were welcomed to the Board for threeyear terms: Robin Hartsell ’93 and Joseph Siok ’90. A new president was also named – Scott Stoll ’01 will serve as president for a threeyear term. The Association is led by a Board whose mission is “to connect and engage current and future alumni for the advancement of Rockford University.” We take our responsibilities seriously and want to serve you effectively. President: Scott Stoll ’01 Vice Pres.: Susan Ouchterloney ’79 Secretary: Courtney Geiger ’02 Immediate Past President: Laura Wilhelmi ’04 Alumni Trustee: Joel Moore ’00

Directors: Tyler Abercrombie ’00 Juliana Russell Barker ’08/’10 Terry Brown ’90/’03 Carlos Fulcher ’96 Dawn Niehaus Gile ’02 Kerstin Grey ’03/’11 Robin Hartsell ’93 Jamie Jones ’01 Lee Krizka ’60 John LiCausi ’04 Matt Long ’00 Tom Massari ’98 Kirk Mueller ’01 Bettyann Pappenfus ’81 Brooke Peterson ’07 Jim Reynolds ’95 Joe Siok ’90 Kristin Ketchum Tews ’97 Damir Utrzan ’11

in memoriam Clara Johns ’37, May 18, 2015 Virginia Parrett Morgan ’37, July 9, 2015 Phyllis Spalding Miller ’40, May 3, 2015 Marjorie Sass Bradley Scholl ’44, May 30, 2015 Marion Hammond Shepard ’45, July 1, 2015 Miriam Tunison ’47, Oct. 10, 2015 Lily Ho ’49, May 4, 2015 Joan Hildebrand Wagoner ’49, May 24, 2015 Bernice Stone Kratz ’50, June 22, 2015 Richard Pesavento ’50, May 30, 2015 Gayle Greenawalt Beck ’51, June 27, 2015 Rosemary Hasse Walden ’57, June 29, 2015 James Sullivan ’59, July 26, 2015 Joanne Dzielak Schleicher ’61, April 17, 2015 Henry Adams Bartholomay ’67, Oct. 5, 2015 Allen Bell ’69, June 8, 2015

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June Hagelin Foster ’70, Aug. 15, 2015 John Howard ’70H, Aug. 7, 2015 Eldora Koeppe Musil ’70, Aug. 19, 2015 Cynthia Carlson Peterson ’70, Oct. 10, 2015 Ruth Langager Varland ’70, Sept. 28, 2015 Sally Degen Bromley ’72, Oct. 17, 2015 Betty Roush Schrader ’72, June 30, 2015 Beverley Hatfield Swanson ’73, May 28, 2015 Naomi Huffman Whyte ’73/’77, April 22, 2015 Barbara Tarabori LaSalle ’75, June 23, 2015 Edith Gregory McCauley ’75, June 25, 2015 Teresa Craig Bromley ’83, April 4, 2015 Patricia Graham ’87, Aug. 21, 2015 Elizabeth Miles Mueller ’95, Oct. 1, 2015


in memory of John a. Howard ’70H Former Rockford College president John A. Howard, John A. Howard ’70H 93, died peacefully on August 7, 2015, just a few days shy of his 94th birthday. Dr. Howard began a seventeen-year term as President of Rockford College in 1960. In 1977, he resigned as President of Rockford College to found Rockford Institute, a conservative thinktank. With Allan Carlson, he founded an off-shoot of that Institute: The Howard Center for Family, Religion & Society. The University community took a moment to remember Dr. Howard’s significant contributions during the opening conference for faculty and staff members on August 15. Included below are remarks shared by President Head. “Born in 1921, John Howard completed three years of studies at Princeton, only to break away during World War II for service in the 1st Infantry Division. Under enemy fire for much of the 11 months between D-Day to VE Day, he received two silver stars, two purple hearts and a battlefield commission. At the age of 29 he was named President of Palos Verdes College in California. Four years later he was appointed Executive Vice Chairman of President Eisenhower’s Committee on Government Contracts, which conducted the first program to leverage government contracts and provide free access to minority applicants. He completed his Ph.D. at Northwestern and in 1960 began a seventeenyear term as President of Rockford College. Dr. Howard mobilized a group of college and university presidents

with teams going to Washington, D.C., in 1961–62, trying to convince Congress that Federal funding of higher education would severely compromise select academic freedoms. Dr. Howard was sometimes viewed as a polarizing figure, with his perspectives and beliefs serving as lightning rods for discourse and debate. During his time, he embraced a complex challenge with vigor. He arrived in Rockford to an institution that had recently become coed, after 112 years as a single-gender college for women. The institution was still reeling from the emotional fallout that ensued. Furthermore, the Board had just made the hard decision to abandon its centuryold downtown campus in favor of relocating to this, then bare, parcel of land purchased some 32 years earlier. He was faced with raising the funds to construct all the buildings on this campus, paid for entirely through private philanthropy, while mending a wounded alumni base and assimilating a growing student population, all against a backdrop of social change and civil unrest that marked the 1960s. Over the last several years we have been confronted with our own set of challenges. And as we face this year of transition, we will all take on trials, tribulations and joys in our personal and professional lives. As he grappled with such a monumental task, at heart he was a tenacious and dedicated servant of Rockford University and he worked tirelessly to leave for us a legacy of excellence that can serve as inspiration to us all.”

BSMS 2005–2015: accelerated degree program for adult learners The Bachelor of Science in Management Studies (BSMS) degree program is an accelerated undergraduate degree completion program that is specifically designed for the adult learner who has some college credits and wants to complete a quality bachelor’s degree program. The program has been in existence since 2005 and has over 200 graduates. Students who require an accelerated degree option are unique. They are typically older than traditional students, are working full-time, and their career and family commitments may prevent them from enrolling in an existing program. They need to make progress toward a degree at a faster pace than traditional programs permit. The program is cohort based, meaning students belong to a specific group that completes the program together. This offers a collaborative learning environment that provides peer support and group work within the cohort. Students generally take only one class at a time. Classes are taught in sequential five-week sessions and run throughout the year with two brief periods off. Graduates of the BSMS program at RU benefit from earning a business degree grounded in a strong liberal arts tradition. The next BSMS cohort begins February 9, 2016.


Nonprofit Organization U.S. Postage PAID Rockford, IL Permit No. 389

Alumni Office 5050 E. State St. Rockford, IL 61108 phone: 815.394.5111 fax: 815.226.4081 rockford.edu

spring 2016 performing arts Events For tickets or information, please call the Box Office at 815.226.4100 or visit rockford.edu. Dates and locations subject to change.

“Antigone” by Sophocles, Feb. 25–28, 2016, Cheek Theatre “Company” by Steven Sondheim, April 28–May 1, 2016, Maddox Theatre Other performing arts events: • The Orchesis Student Dance Company Concert, Jan. 28–30, 2016, Maddox Theatre • Music Recitals: Feb. 15, March 21,and May 2, 2016, Maddox Theatre • Senior Seminars, April 9–10, 2016, Cheek & Maddox Theatres • Classical Music Recital, April 11, 2016, Fisher Chapel • Spring Concert, May 4, 2016, Maddox Theatre

We hope you’ll join us! Check out rockford.edu/calendar often for details about the University’s many diverse offerings throughout the semester.

and more!

athletics • lectures • performing arts • art exhibits 20

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