Tulane september 2015

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Katrina’s 10th anniversary



Beyond Katrina


New, repaired and renewed buildings


Protecting the coast


Chronicler of music Gwen Thompkins


Geographer Campanella

paula burch-celentano

urban setting The Tulane School of Social Work has a new home at 127 Elk Place in downtown New Orleans. The school occupies the third and fourth floors of the 1917-era building that was renovated by the architecture firm Eskew+Dumez+Ripple and DonahueFavret Contractors. The renovation received a Louisiana Landmarks Society Award for Excellence in Historic Preservation in April. Kidopolis Child Development Center and the Downtown Student Health Center also are housed in the building.

Renewal On the cover: Bayou St. John winds through Mid-City, one of New Orleans’ most revitalized neighborhoods post-Katrina. Photo by Jackson Hill on June 23, 2007.

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mark andresen

P R E S I D E N T ’ S

Startup City by Mike Fitts Looking around New Orleans today, the contrast is stunning. It’s not just 10 years that remove us from the bleak days after Hurricane Katrina. It’s a shift in mindset, a heightened energy, a renewed hope. A spirit of innovation pervades New Orleans and Tulane University. We see items in the news that would have seemed far-fetched in the past, such as technology visionary Steve Case, co-founder of AOL, visiting the city and declaring, “I think New Orleans is poised to re-emerge as one of the great startup cities in the country, maybe even the world.” This has been exhilarating for me to watch as a new resident and new president over the last year. Tulane contributes mightily to this atmosphere. It also draws from it. This is where we will find the key to making the next 10 years even more inspiring. At Tulane, we embrace this passion for entrepreneurship and creativity that we find around us. It helps inform our own drive for innovation in the education we deliver, as we encourage idea sharing across disciplines and enterprising projects from our schools. The lively context of our home city will help propel us to leadership in educating nimble thinkers, to sharpen our competitiveness and to thrive in a changing landscape for higher education. The kernel of this already is in place. A study on the economic power of Tulane in the New Orleans region found that patent applications filed annually by the university’s Technology Transfer Office rose from seven in 2008 to 42 after five years. The number of inventions reported by Tulane researchers rose from 28 to 57. During the same period, 11 startup companies launched to market technologies developed at Tulane. Alumni, faculty and students started dozens of other companies operating around the New Orleans region. Tulane also fueled the workforce, providing about 30,000 graduates, or 21 percent of all college alumni in the metropolitan area. While these dynamics benefit the city, they also cycle back to enhance the Tulane experience. Take one startup in town that developed a system giving manufacturers a technological window onto chemical reactions as they take place. Having that window lets manufacturers


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innovative ways New Orleans and Tulane are driven to find new ideas and new ways of doing things in a postKatrina environment.

adjust for quality in the midst of production, cutting waste and saving time and energy. The company works with polymers, which are chemical compounds found in a sweeping range of products, from consumer electronics to aircraft to clothing. Polymer manufacturing is a vast industry, at more than $1 trillion, said Alex Reed, CEO of the company, Advanced Polymer Monitoring Technologies (APMT). The company’s system could save individual operators millions. Its leaders are dedicated to growing in New Orleans. Tulane and the company have a close relationship. The firm rose from discoveries at the Center for Polymer Reaction Monitoring and Characterization at the Tulane School of Science and Engineering. Its entire executive team has Tulane ties as alumni or faculty. It licenses technology from Tulane. Without help from the university, Reed said, the costs and risks of conducting the necessary research would stifle a small startup. Perhaps what’s most meaningful for Tulane’s success, however, is that APMT has worked with Tulane student interns. The university sparked an enterprise that offers students experience in entrepreneurship and innovation. These kinds of experiences play out across our campuses. The Tulane Business Model Competition tests students in pitching their startup ideas. This year we hosted our first Novel Tech Challenge, funded by the Burton Morgan Foundation, calling on students to present ideas for improving the environment, health, education and urban infrastructure. Tulane teams won the international Neuro Startup Challenge for medical inventions. The National Science Foundation named Tulane an Innovation Corps Site. The Phyllis M. Taylor Center for Social Innovation and Design Thinking and the Albert Lepage Center for Entrepreneurship and Innovation have been launched. Universities have long been a natural source for innovation. Tulane belongs to the Association of American Universities, which has reported sparking thousands of patents and hundreds of startup companies in one year alone. When you combine Tulane’s energy with the incredible dynamism New Orleans is showing, you get a potent mix. As a newcomer, I stand in awe of the promise I’ve found in the city and at Tulane. We’ve moved past the raw recovery, past the period when the future of New Orleans was dark and uncertain. Now, we’ve entered an age of renaissance.

TUlane C O N T E N T S 10 Years Ago On the uptown campus, McAlister Auditorium sits in floodwater, Sept. 1, 2005.

Louis mayer

2 PResiDent’s LetteR Enterprising spirit


Storm of Change On the 10th anniversary of Hurricane Katrina, we look at how Tulane has moved beyond recovery and rebuilding toward a renaissance of creativity, collaboration and community. By Michael Luke, TC ’04


Changed Landscape In the decade since the storm, and with $676 million in infrastructure improvements, Tulane has greener, more efficient facilities for learning, living and exploring. By Carol J. Schlueter


Water, Water Everywhere With the sea rising and the ground sinking in New Orleans and the rest of Southeast Louisiana, Tulane scientists are scrambling to figure out what can be done to stop the looming disappearance of a lush and productive coast. By Mary Ann Travis


The Long Way Home Music—and the musicians—are a siren call to Gwen Thompkins, luring her back to New Orleans post-Katrina. By Gwen Thompkins, NC ’87


Once and Future Katrinas A geographer speculates about what once was, what might have been and what still can be in New Orleans’ relationship with water. By Richard Campanella

6 news University Medical Center opens • Spotlight on public schools • In That Number • Who Dat? Michael DeBakey • Food for health • Treating trauma in Nepal • New World feminist • Rare find • Enrique Alférez’s Louisiana at Work and Play • Ana Lopez 13 sPoRts Baseball’s season • Golfer Silvia Garces 38 tULanians Nikki Jodry • Homecoming • Al Andrews • Paulin Basinga • Brendan Finke and Joe McMenemon 39 wHeRe y'at! Class notes 43 FaReweLL Tribute: Tim Favrot 46 waveMaKeRs Recovery help 48 new oRLeans Evacuation blues

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greenwave composition Mike Etheridge (B ’91) and Stacie Goeddel (NC ’92) visited New Orleans last year with their 8-year-old son, Griffin. When they returned home to San Francisco, Griffin wrote his first-ever composition. Here’s an excerpt: “My mom and dad went there [New Orleans] for a school called Greenwave. Greenwave is my dream school and I hope I go there someday.”

y e a h,

y o u

FAN OF CAMPANELLA Recently, during a brief lull in work, I had the chance to browse through the NEW BOOKS section at the Ouachita Parish Library. There, out front, was one entitled Bourbon Street: A History by a Tulane prof and N.O. transplant, Richard Campanella. Having traversed this famed social highway thousands of times growing up down there, I was intrigued and checked it out. It is, in a word, GREAT. This guy writes almost as well as Angus Lind; indeed, the book makes a handy reference tool besides being most enjoyable reading. I was wondering if Tulane had ever done an article about Dr. Campanella, who apparently has won several state awards for previous achievements. Larry LaBarrere, A&S ’69 West Monroe, Louisiana Editor’s Note: So glad you asked about Richard Campanella. Better than an article about him, we have an article by him in this issue. See “Once and Future Katrinas” on page 36. Also, in the June 2014 Tulane, check out “Storied Street,” an article about Campanella’s book Bourbon Street. TREE TIME Thanks for the article about the campus trees [“In That Number,” Tulane, June 2015]. I had no idea that the Newcomb Oaks were grown from trees on the Washington Avenue campus. As a student at Tulane, I often studied under the Newcomb Oaks, as they, like most live oaks, always imbued a sense of calm and serene. I am glad to know the history behind these trees and get a connection to the women in Newcomb College who did not want to lose this part of their college experience when the school moved uptown! … I was a little bummed that there was no mention of the Meta Sequoia trees on campus. There was a big article in The Tulanian [spring 2007] after


w r i t e Katrina about the rescue efforts to save these trees, where they came from, and how they were once thought to be an extinct species. Tulane was one of several schools to receive seeds for ongoing propagation after a stand was found in a remote part of China. Post-Katrina, most people I spoke to had a sort of “Holy Grail” item that they had hoped to rescue from the destruction. Mine was a photograph; a close friend of mine’s was her mother’s wedding band; my husband’s was his knife kit (he was in culinary school at the time). For Tom Armitage [former head groundskeeper at Tulane] and the grounds crew, these trees were their Holy Grail. Lori Coulter, UC ’06 New Orleans

MEMORY LANE Thank you for publishing my letter [“More About Sam Zemurray,” June 2015]. You made one change in adding “Dr. Karnes was in the department.” I did not put “in” in purposely, because in fact Dr. Karnes was the entire department in regard to Latin American Studies. I found this amusing. I remember him

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dismissing one of his classes in October 1963, so that we could all walk down to St. Charles to watch President Kennedy’s cavalcade go by. In regard to your Shakespeare article, I took a course taught by Professor Irving Ribner, a worldrenowned authority whose own book we utilized. He was a wonderful teacher and great credit to Tulane. ... Tulane is always in my heart. Martin S. Weinstein, A&S ’64 San Jose, California REFLECTIONS ON JYA In 1989, Robert Fulghum published All I Really Need to Know I Learned in Kindergarten. If I were to follow his premise, I’d write “Much of What I Needed to Know To Be A Successful Adult I Learned From Going JYA.” It’s hard to believe that August 2016 marks 50 years since a group of us left the familiar St. Charles Avenue campus and headed across the ocean. At that time, study abroad was not as common as it is now. There was little access to international news; and transatlantic phone service was very limited. The fiber optic cables and satellites that provide connectivity today did not exist. France had always held a big attraction for me; and one of the primary reasons I applied to Tulane was because of its study abroad program. There were 13 of us who headed to France on the USS United States. From the time we landed in Le Havre, there was a continuous bombardment of new sights, sounds, smells and tastes. While the adjustment was initially fatiguing, it eventually became intriguing and, ultimately, empowering. Here’s what I learned from my JYA experience: It’s important to be an effective communicator. In a new situation, understanding not just words, but the environment is critical.

Managing new situations is a skill. One of our first experiences in France involved train travel. Station stops were brief. So you had to be ready to board quickly. I remember our adviser, Fran Lawrence, passing luggage through a train window to save time. Observing the environment can be key. When we first arrived, there was a period when everything seemed unfamiliar, and it was difficult to recognize patterns. Gradually, by being attentive, I was able to better anticipate what was happening or expected, especially pertaining to aspects of daily life. Relationships transcend time and space. I am still in touch with some of those who studied in France. I am also in contact with the sole surviving member of my host family. All this helped me as I’ve moved through my life, from teaching in a foreign language department in an Atlanta high school; relocating to Washington, D.C., where I started a company that worked with associations to expand their activities internationally; and, once again, relocating after 20 years in Washington, this time to New Mexico, a totally new environment socially and geographically. From my vantage point now after all these years, I realize the JYA experience provided not just knowledge about another culture, but ways to understand, navigate and appreciate our global village. Susan Keith, NC ’68 Los Ranchos, New Mexico KUDOS This issue [June 2015] was excellent—as most are! Paul R. Meyer Jr., M ’58 Valparaiso, Indiana IN PRINT AND/OR ONLINE I was just reading the print copy this morning…great stuff for Tulane as always! Jennifer Lynch, B ’79 Needham, Massachusetts

Letter From The Editor

TUlane M








Editor Mary Ann Travis

crEativE dirEctor Melinda Whatley Viles EditoriaL dirEctor Faith Dawson

jackson hill

“tuLanians” Editor Fran Simon

STORM SAFETY “Gutting” is not a word we even knew before Katrina. And “storm surge” was an esoteric, abstract mathematical calculation. Now, 10 years after Katrina, we know that a flooded house has to be gutted to its studs to be repaired. And, while it’s still a little abstract: Everyone should want at least a 100-year level of risk reduction to defend against storm surge flooding, but a 500-year level would be better. (The 100-year level means reduced risk from a storm surge that has a 1 percent chance of occurring or being exceeded in any given year.) For this Hurricane Katrina 10th anniversary issue of Tulane magazine, we take stock of the August 2005 storm’s impact. The devastation of Katrina was staggering: More than 1,500 people died; property damage for Louisiana and Mississippi was $81 billion; and Tulane was closed for a semester, its students scattered to more than 600 universities. But the resilience of Tulane people— and New Orleanians and thousands of volunteers—pulled us through. Yvette Jones, Tulane executive vice president for university relations and development, says that calls came in right away after the storm from Tulanians around the world. “People wanted to know what they could do to help.” We must express sincere gratitude to all the students who applied in record numbers to Tulane—and those who returned—after the flood. They joined enthusiastically in public service and

brought an eagerness and determination to the recovery of the city. In many cases, they stayed in New Orleans after they graduated, joining in the revitalization of the city as young professionals and entrepreneurs. Alison Fensterstock (NC ’00), a music critic for Nola.com/Times-Picayune, recalls the first live music she saw in New Orleans post-Katrina. It was the Happy Talk Band at the Circle Bar. “I cried a lot, and hugged everyone,” she writes. Fensterstock is not alone in being moved by the music. Tulane students flock to the music clubs of the city, ready to partake of the culture and joie de vivre of the place. It has taken an unbelievable amount of hard work to get us where we are today. All the buildings on the three major campuses—uptown, downtown and the North Shore—are restored from storm damage, save Howard-Tilton Memorial Library, whose repair is in progress and will be completed this year. The $14.5 billion in U.S. Army Corps of Engineers projects of new levees, floodgates and pump stations (like the 17th Street Permanent Canal Closure and Pump pictured above) gave us the confidence to rebuild. And we are aware that coastal restoration must be part of the plan. It’s been a marathon, but we have our second wind. We are stepping into the future, ready for what may come—and happy to be part of this great university—and amazing city. —MARY ANN TRAVIS

contributors Keith Brannon Bradley Charlesworth Catherine Freshley, ’09 Alicia Duplessis Jasmin Angus Lind, A&S ’66 Mary-Elizabeth Lough Ryan Rivet, UC ’02 Mary Sparacello Mike Strecker, G ’03 sEnior univErsity PhotograPhEr Paula Burch-Celentano sEnior Production coordinator Sharon Freeman graPhic dEsignErs Tracey Bellina-Milazzo Marian Herbert-Bruno


PrEsidEnt of thE univErsity Michael A. Fitts vicE PrEsidEnt for univErsity communications Deborah L. Grant, PHTM ’86 ExEcutivE dirEctor of EditoriaL and crEativE sErvicEs Carol J. Schlueter, B ’99 Tulane (ISSN 21619255) is a quarterly magazine published by the Tulane Office of Editorial and Creative Services, 31 McAlister Drive, Drawer 1, New Orleans, LA 70118-5624. Periodical postage at New Orleans, LA 70113 and additional mailing offices. Send editorial correspondence to the above address or email tulanemag@tulane.edu. Opinions expressed in Tulane are not necessarily those of Tulane representatives and do not necessarily reflect university policies. Material may be reprinted only with permission. Tulane University is an affirmative action/equal opportunity institution. POSTMASTER: Send address changes to: Tulane, Tulane Office of Editorial and Creative Services, 31 McAlister Drive, Drawer 1, New Orleans, LA 70118-5624. sEPtEmbEr 2015/voL. 87, no. 1

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Knowledge jobs on the rise New Orleans is

No. 2 in growth of jobs in the knowledge sector, according to Economic Modeling Specialists Intl.


$1.1 billion hospital opens Almost exactly 10 years after Hurricane Katrina shut down operations at the old Charity Hospital, a new medical complex between Canal Street and Tulane Avenue has replaced the city’s historic hospital and its successor, University Hospital, also known as Interim LSU Hospital. When it opened on Aug. 1, University Medical Center New Orleans became a major academic hospital for the city. Tulane doctors are providing 35 percent to 40 percent of the physician services there, and Tulane School of Medicine students and residents will complete rotations there during their training. Dr. L. Lee Hamm, senior vice president and dean of the Tulane School of Medicine, looks forward to the new facility. “It’s a very modern, very nice hospital. It will provide more educational space [for students] … this has fabulous education space.” Hamm says he is impressed by the size of the new medical center. The 2.3 million-square-foot facility, built at $1.1 billion, will feature a Level I trauma center, 446 inpatient beds, 277 exam rooms in the clinic and 19 state-of-the-art operating rooms. LCMC Health, parent corporation of Children’s Hospital of New Orleans and Touro Infirmary, will operate it. It also features energy-efficient technology and is built to withstand disasters, with critical functions located above potential flood level and storage capacity for a week’s worth of supplies. One thing that Hamm hopes flows seamlessly from the Charity days to the UMC era is the overwhelming “spirit of Charity,” a well-known and -documented professional commitment to patient care. “It was a great training ground,” Hamm says of Charity. “It didn’t have the nicest amenities, but there was a real dedication of the people that worked there. … It’s very important that the current students learn some of the dedication to their patients that Charity Hospital represented. Tulane wants to be certain that its medical students embrace that.”—Faith Dawson


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Training Ground

A state-of-the-art surgery room at the new University Medical Center in New Orleans will be a training facility for Tulane School of Medicine students.

CoMMon groUnd Meria Carstarphen, left, of Atlanta Public Schools and Henry Levin of Columbia University participate in the ERA conference in June. Castarphen said that education policymakers often polarize issues to the detriment of students.

Post-Katrina New Orleans public schools and their transformation into an almost all-charter school system were the centerpiece of a Tulane Education Research Alliance (ERA) conference held in downtown New Orleans in June. Directed by economics professor Douglas Harris, ERA is a research organization dedicated to understanding the school reforms happening in the city. Conversations at the conference—attended by 300 people—often veered to the issue of innovation at the system level as opposed to innovation in instruction and “how those are two different things,” said Harris. The question of whether lessons learned from the New Orleans public schools’ experiment can be transferred to other school systems remains to be answered. The Cowen Institute for Public Education Initiatives—a Tulane partner of the ERA— recently released a report that shows that student performance on standardized tests and the ACT, as well as graduation rates and college enrollment, have all increased for New Orleans public school students. Collectively, the city’s public schools have gone from failing to average performance since Katrina. But New Orleans students still perform below the national average. Conference participant Meria Carstarphen (NC ’92), superintendent of Atlanta Public Schools, said whatever the governing structure of public schools, it is important to keep in mind: “The cornerstone of our democracy is this thing called public education.”—Mary Ann Travis

Paula Burch-celentano

chris granger

NOLA Schools

In That Number Far and Wide Since Katrina then and now Much has changed at Tulane as a result of Hurricane Katrina’s wind and floodwaters 10 years ago. Enrollment has rebounded. Students step off campus more than ever for learning and involvement in the greater New Orleans community—and around the globe. Here are a few numbers that show a changing Tulane.




The public service graduation requirement for all undergraduates is two-tiered. Students must complete one lower-level service-learning course before the end of their sophomore year. For the second tier, they participate in higher-level service-learning courses or academic service-learning internships.

Tulane enrolls students from almost every state in the nation—and many other countries. In 2014, 50 or more first-year students came from each of these states—California, New York, Maryland, New Jersey and Illinois (as well as Louisiana).


Tulane now partners with 850 community organizations in New Orleans. Working with these organizations, students and faculty engage in academic and volunteer service activities. Prior to Katrina, Tulane partnered with 265 local organizations.

13,531 The number of students enrolled at Tulane in all its schools in fall 2014 was 13,531. This number exceeds pre-Katrina enrollment, which was 13,214 during fall 2004.

242,000 1,600 infographic by tracey bellina-Milazzo

Tulane students logged 242,000 hours of community service in 2012–2013. This number of hours is up 157 percent from 2006–2007.

Four hundred Tulane faculty and staff members volunteered 1,600 hours of community service at sites around the city during the university-sponsored 2015 Day of Service in April.

In nearly 80 programs lasting a semester, summer or year, a third of Tulane undergraduates study abroad.


Tulane students in greater numbers are deciding to stay in New Orleans after they earn their degrees. 29,700 Tulane alumni reside in the city (out of approximately 109,000 living alumni).

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Photo by Carlos antonio rios/©houston ChroniCle

Who Dat? Drs. Michael DeBakey and Rudolph Matas

MEDICAL TITANS After Hurricane Katrina swiped past New Orleans, the levees breached and the downtown area was inundated with floodwater in August 2005, the Tulane University School of Medicine moved to temporary quarters at the Baylor College of Medicine in Houston. DR. MICHAEL DEBAKEY (A&S ’30, M ’32, G ’35)—a titan of a physician and surgeon—welcomed the medical school students, residents, faculty members, administrators and staff members to Baylor on Oct. 1, 2005 (above). At the orientation session that day, the atmosphere in the Baylor auditorium was electric as the Tulane group celebrated the semester’s start. Before he greeted them, medical students knew the esteemed surgeon by his long list of accomplishments: DeBakey performed the world’s first successful coronary bypass surgery, supervised the first multiorgan transplant for a human being, carried out the first successful procedures to treat patients who suffer stroke-causing aneurysms, and developed two devices to mechanically maintain a heart’s ability to pump. DeBakey won many awards throughout his career, including the Congressional Gold Medal, the highest civilian honor awarded by Congress, which was presented to him at a ceremony in the rotunda of the U.S. Capitol in 2008.


s e p t e m b e r 2015 T ULANE MAGA ZINE

Tulane honored DeBakey with the Rudolph Matas Award in Vascular Surgery of the Violet Hart Fund at the Tulane School of Medicine on April 6, 1954 (right). DR. RuDoLpH MATAS himself presented the award to DeBakey. Matas’ name is familiar to Tulane medical students who have studied at the Rudolph Matas Library of the Health Sciences. Matas (1860–1957) was a renowned surgeon, the first to use spinal anesthesia in the United States. DeBakey (who died in July 2008 at the age of 99) had joined the Baylor University College of Medicine in 1948, after serving as a faculty member in the Tulane School of Medicine since 1937. As the 2005–06 academic year was set to begin, the Tulane team received critical life support from four Texas institutions that formed the South Texas Alliance of Academic Health Centers nine days after the storm: Baylor, University of Texas– Houston, Texas A&M University, and the University of Texas Medical Branch at Galveston. The alliance members agreed to provide all necessary resources until the Tulane School of Medicine could return to its home campus in downtown New Orleans.

Tulane leaders had two goals for the relocation to Houston: that none of the medical students would lose time, and that the fourth-year students would graduate on schedule. And they accomplished these goals. The displaced students continued to study with Tulane’s own curriculum, taught by Tulane faculty, and the four Texas institutions accepted them for clinical rotations. The school stayed at Baylor for the entire 2005–06 academic year. The warm welcome extended by the big-hearted DeBakey set the tone for the medical school in exile.—fRAN SIMoN

DIRECT IMPACT Tulane University has a more than $1 billion annual impact

on the Louisiana economy, generating about 11,800 direct and indirect jobs, says a recent economic impact study by a New York City firm. The study reviewed Tulane’s fiscal year 2013 expenditures in salaries, purchasing, construction, research funding, operational costs and other spending.


Taste for Health As more medical schools across the country adopt Tulane University’s pioneering culinary medicine program, organizers are making sure the curriculum’s core ingredients—recipes, course modules and nutrition research—stay fresh as they travel. The Goldring Center for Culinary Medicine recently hosted a twoday retreat for the 13 universities and healthcare centers that license its curriculum to teach medical students culinary skills to better counsel patients about nutrition. The goal was to get feedback to improve and grow the program and to share successes and challenges others have in creating a “food as medicine” culture within their communities. “These are all organizations that have food, lifestyle and health as their core mission,” said Dr. Timothy Harlan, Goldring Center executive director. “It went quite smoothly with a good balance of exchange of ideas, meeting people at other sites and solidifying the group.” Some of the suggestions included customizing recipes for regional tastes and offering more options for specialized diets. Participants talked about how they have adapted the program to fit individual needs within their schools. Tulane’s program targets first- and second-year medical students, but Arnot Health Graduate Medical Education in Elmira, New York, uses it as an elective for those reaching clinical training in the final two years of medical school. Its “Healthy Kitchens” course accepted 15 students the first year with a growing wait list, said Dr. Beth Dollinger, an orthopedic surgeon who oversees the program. “The response has been fabulous,” Dollinger said. Goldring will incorporate retreat suggestions by fall with future plans to add a new course for pediatricians. Some of the institutions licensing the program include University of Texas–Southwestern Moncrief Cancer Institute, UCLA Clinical and Translational Science Institute, Rutgers University School of Medicine and Mercer University School of Medicine.—Keith Brannon

Teaching Smarter Eating Leah Sarris, executive chef and program director of the Goldring Center for Culinary Medicine, sharpens a knife in a session in June for representatives from 13 universities and healthcare centers that have licensed the Goldring Center’s curriculum.

Dr. Bernard Jaffe was on his way to Nepal, just one cross-Pacific flight away, when the Gorkha earthquake hit on April 25. The 7.9-magnitude quake killed more than 8,700 people and injured more than 22,000. “I was sorry I wasn’t there,” Jaffe said. “I thought I could help.” A professor emeritus in the Tulane University Department of Surgery, Jaffe is director of the Tulane Global Trauma Education Program, traveling with Tulane surgical residents and medical students to train people in Nepal, Bangladesh, Myanmar, Cambodia, Laos and Vietnam in emergency medical skills. From 2010 through 2014, Jaffe figures the program has trained 4,278 medical and nursing professionals, 941 police officers, 1,341 emergency medical technicians and 82 mountaineers in Southeast Asia. Those individuals “also trained lots of individuals since, and we have no way of quantifying those,” Jaffe said. “We train mostly lay people—in a disaster it’s the people in your neighborhood who can save your life. Your life relies on someone on your street knowing what to do when a building comes down. “These trips are unbelievably rewarding,” Jaffe added. “We will go back in the fall. This (Nepal’s damage) will be a 25-year problem to solve.”—Fran Simon

SAFETY SKILLS In Kathmandu, Nepal, participants practice the “clothes drag”—a safe method to move an injured person away from a dangerous area. The session was part of Tulane Global Trauma Education training. bernard jaffe

paula burch-celentano

Emergency Assist

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"routes" on the road “American Routes,” the public radio program produced

at Tulane University, led a tour of American “roots” music to Beijing, China, last spring in collaboration with Smithsonian Folkways Recordings and the China Arts and Entertainment Group. Musicians played Western swing, conjunto music and traditional New Orleans jazz.


Monumental Find

Women of Letters


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Important Words Letters written by a 17th-century noblewoman in New Spain—now Mexico— shed light on life in the New World. Pictured here is a 1713 portrait by Juan de Miranda.

rare ForMs Casts of Maya monuments include hieroglyphics now lost from the original. The casts were made in the 1890s.

ryan rivet

The letters are more than three centuries old, but the brown ink is legible and the white cotton pages look almost new. The two unpublished manuscript letters, penned in the 1680s, are part of the Latin American Library collection at Tulane University. The letters were “stumbled upon” three years ago in the library’s extensive archive of documents from the Spanish-American colonial period, says Hortensia Calvo, the library’s Doris Stone Director. Their condition and contents are remarkable, providing new details about life in New Spain (now Mexico) and the friendship of two women of historical importance. The letters were written by María Luisa Manrique de Lara y Gonzaga, wife of the viceroy of New Spain, who was also a mentor and protector to Sor Juana Inés de la Cruz, a nun who was the first feminist of the New World and one of the foremost writers of all time in the Spanish language, Calvo says. One of the letters sheds new light on Sor Juana. “These letters give us a more complete picture of how a noblewoman perceived life in the colonies at that time,” Calvo says; Maria Luisa wrote to her cousin in Europe about her loneliness in the New World, the birth of her son there and her friendship with Sor Juana. Calvo describes Sor Juana as “an absolutely extraordinary woman of international renown, way ahead of her time,” who was criticized by Catholic Church leaders for her writing and fame. “This is a huge coup for Tulane to have these letters in our collections,” says Calvo, who has co-authored a book about the letters. Records show that the library acquired the letters in 1935. —Carol J. Schlueter

As the Middle American Research Institute (MARI) inventoried Tulane University’s holdings last fall, references to architectural casts not in immediate possession kept appearing. MARI director Marcello Canuto suggested visiting a Tulane storage facility—a former ammunition shed at the F. Edward Hebert Research Center in Belle Chasse, Louisiana— where MARI objects were stored nearly four decades ago. The collection of rare 19th- and early 20th-century casts of Maya monuments was larger than he imagined, so the institute rapidly assembled a team to uncover the contents of Bunker 28. What they found was startling. Stacked amidst rolls of fencing and old classroom desks were the priceless casts. “They all have a great value within their historical contexts,” notes Caroline Parris, MARI collections manager. The casts were used not only by colleges and universities, but also were shown in traveling exhibitions such as Chicago’s 1933 World’s Fair. They bear hieroglyphic details that have since eroded on the monuments themselves. These details could aid in decoding hieroglyphic texts. However, it was almost too late. Recent damage to the bunker’s windows left the monuments vulnerable to weather and vermin. The Zemurray Foundation saved the day with a timely grant. Thanks to the foundation’s assistance, MARI immediately began working to catalog and protect these rare casts for future generations of Tulane researchers and students.—Mary-Elizabeth Lough

Gallery Enrique Alférez, Louisiana at Work and Play CHARITY HOSPITAL ARTWORK Activity within Charity Hospital in New Orleans slowed to halt in 2005 following Hurricane Katrina. Today, the hospital’s front entrance on Tulane Avenue is boarded up and barricaded. But above the entry, a 15-by-12foot cast-aluminum grille titled Louisiana at Work and Play remains as a reminder of the times in which it was created. Designed by Mexican-born sculptor Enrique Alférez (1901–1999), Louisiana at Work and Play was commissioned by the Public Works Administration as part of the New Deal of the 1930s. In the sculpture, 40 male and female figures participate in different forms of work and play such as golfing, studying and farming. A large figure stands at the center of the artwork seemingly gaining strength from all the work being done around him. Throughout Alférez’s active career in New Orleans, he completed dozens of public commissions and even more private designs. He gained a reputation for being controversial because of the political references that sometimes appeared in his work. At age 12, Alférez had become a soldier in the Mexican Revolution under the leadership of Francisco “Pancho” Villa. This may have been the start of his interest in the actions of government. With a flying duck within the design, Louisiana at Work and Play is an example of Alférez’s practice of incorporating subtle social commentary in his art. According to Building Louisiana: The Legacy of the Public Works Administration by Robert D. Leighninger Jr., during Huey Long’s tenure as Louisiana governor from 1928 to 1932, Long implemented a required campaign donation from state employees. The duck of Alférez’s piece is a tongue-in-check reference to the “de-duct” box into

which employees would put their cash contributions. There was also a saying— “de ducks are flying”—referring to the pay period in which employees were forced to make the deduction. Charity Hospital was completed in 1939, and a new governor, Richard Leche, continued the practice of the deductions. When Leche got wind of Alférez’s reference to the “de-ducts” in the large ornamental art piece adorning the hospital, he sent a man with a hacksaw to remove the bird.

According to Alférez in a later interview, two nearby Times-Picayune reporters warned the man that destruction of art funded by the Public Works Administration would be deemed a federal offense, and the man did not complete his mission. The duck and several other stone reliefs created by Alférez are still on the façade of Charity Hospital, which has never reopened since the storm. —ALICIA DuPLeSSIS JASmIn

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Interview Ana Lopez

Ana Lopez is professor of communication, director of the Cuban and Caribbean Studies Institute and senior associate provost. She was one of the original architects of the public service graduation requirement at Tulane. What did you think about the future of the city and the university when you first understood the scope and scale of the flooding after Katrina? Understanding the scope and scale of the flooding was not something that occurred on a given day after Aug. 29, 2005. It was waves of shocks and aftershocks. Of thinking that you had a hold on what was happening and then realizing there was yet another side to the disaster that was engulfing us. I never questioned recovery, I was just too busy trying to make things happen. At what point did the administration begin to analyze Tulane’s role in the city’s recovery process? Without New Orleans, Tulane does not exist. But in 2005, without Tulane, New Orleans could not recover. When we reopened in January 2006, we doubled


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the population of the city and it was the biggest boost to the recovery of the city at the time. We had to bring our staff, faculty and students back, and we had to help the city find its footing and get on a groove. We had to reopen in January. There was no other option. It was a situation where you had to throw all you had on the table, with all your assets and energy. We had to make it happen. We could not lose our students or our faculty, never mind our staff, who were among the hardest hit. How did the concept of service learning evolve in the wake of Katrina? We knew that we needed to engage the Tulane community with the NOLA community and its recovery. I took charge of trying to figure out how to make that happen and make it an integral part of the recovery plan. Back in early October, I was back in the city and met with Vincent Ilustre, associate director of the Office of Service Learning. I challenged him to come up with a plan to create a Center for Public Service committed to the recovery of New Orleans with a full undergraduate engagement component. And that’s what we did. The spring 2006 semester was spent

with a faculty committee focused on the development of the mission of the Center for Public Service and the public service graduation requirement for undergrads, that, to this day, remains a truly distinctive feature of a Tulane education. How has the relationship between the city and the university changed in the last 10 years? Tulane has managed, since Katrina, to successfully shift the town-gown relationship. We are no longer the uppity uptown school with “Northerners.” I really feel like Tulane has woven itself into the fabric of the city in the past 10 years in more significant ways than in the past century. Our students, staff and faculty have become part of so many local initiatives, projects, enterprises. What is remarkable to me is that our graduates no longer return at breakneck speed to the Northeast or wherever they are from; they stay in New Orleans, at least for a few years. Because they cannot get enough of what we, Tulane, and the great city of New Orleans have offered them, have gifted them with. And of that I am truly proud. —RYAN RIVET

2015 •



year—10th-anniversary-of-Katrina emblems to honor Green Wave teams that played in fall 2005 when the university was closed. The athletics teams were displaced to five different Louisiana and Texas universities that year.





Katrina Patch The uniforms of Tulane student-athletes have extra pizzazz this



Silvia Garces, a junior on the women’s golf team, turned in a historic day on May 25 for the Green Wave golf program as she fired a 1-under-par 71 during the final round of stroke play at the 2015 NCAA Championships at the Concession Golf Club in Bradenton, Florida. She produced a school-record ninth place finish. With her finish, Garces surpassed the previous school record of 14th, which was set by former All-American Maribel Lopez Porras at the 2013 NCAA Championships. Garces had a 72-hole total of 293 (74-75-73-71), which tied for the second-best effort by a Tulane player during a national championship round on a par-72 course. “It’s special to have someone like Silvia play at the level she did,” Tulane head coach Lorne Don said after the match. “I don’t think she missed a shot until the 13th hole, which is impressive. She came out and executed beautifully, hit it to the middle of the greens when she needed to, and putted well.” The Green Wave concluded its season with a 19th-place finish at the NCAA Championships and returns all but one player from this year’s lineup for the 2015–16 campaign.

Postseason Play Out of the Dugout The Green Wave baseball team made great strides this year under new head coach David Pierce.

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tEE OFF Silvia Garces returns to the Green Wave golf team after an impressive showing at the NCAA Championships in May.

It may not have been the result Green Wave baseball players had hoped for—the team was eliminated from the NCAA Regional Championship after a loss to University of North Carolina–Wilmington on May 31. Still, their appearance in the tournament marked the first time that the Wave has made the postseason since 2008. The team made a valiant effort at the end of the season to get into the regionals, including must-win victories in a doubleheader at Memphis. “Our backs were against the wall. We had to come out and play our best baseball, and our guys did just that. I’m proud of their effort,” said head baseball coach David Pierce. Following the excitement of receiving the at-large bid to the postseason, the Wave went 1-2 in Louisiana State University’s Alex Box Stadium to end the 2015 campaign. The loss may have come as a disappointment, but the season proved that the baseball program, under new leadership, is on the upswing. Pierce called his first season at Tulane one of his toughest, but also one of the most rewarding he can remember in his career. He said that he found great chemistry with the team and looks forward to seeing what the returning members can do next year. “This is our first step in terms of rebuilding the program,” Pierce said. “There are so many people to thank, including the previous staff for bringing us some great kids to work with. The fans have started to get excited again. I think this is great for our city.” Senior infielder Garrett Deschamp agreed. “It’s been a great experience,” he said. “We didn’t finish the way we wanted to. But getting there and putting up a fight, I couldn’t be any prouder.”—Ryan Rivet

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Golf Great


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Storm of

Change On the 10th anniversary Of hurricane Katrina , we lO OK at hOw t ulane has mOved b e yO n d r e c O v e ry a n d r e b u i l d i n g t O wa r d a r e n a i s s a n c e O f c r e a t i v i t y, c O l l a b O r a t i O n a n d c O m m u n i t y.

Donn Young

By Michael Luke

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AP Photo/L.M. otero

Even 10 years later, memories are vivid. Stories are compelling, especially for those who lived through it. Ever since Aug. 29, 2005, especially near each anniversary of the disaster, the people of New Orleans and Tulane University take stock of the progress made in the aftermath of one of the most devastating storms in U.S. history. It is not forgotten how dramatically lives were impacted and how ravaged the school and city were. We’ve moved beyond Katrina, but we can’t help looking back. The immediate aftermath of the storm wasn’t an immediate blow to Tulane. “The most memorable recollection I have is that I first thought we dodged a bullet,” recalls Scott Cowen, then-president of Tulane, who rode out the storm on the uptown campus. “The day after the storm, it was not nearly as bad as I thought it was going to be.” There was no flooding in the first 24 hours but some damage: Tree limbs were on the ground, windows were broken, and tiles had blown off the rooftops of buildings on the uptown campus. The collective sigh of relief that Cowen and many others shared didn’t last. “I also recall beginning to hear on the radio that levees had been breached,” he says. Helping Hands “I certainly knew what the word ‘breached’ Previous page: Staff and faculty pitch in to clear meant, but I didn’t understand the implicaa lot in the Central City tions of what the breach would mean” for the neighborhood during city and Tulane. the Wave of Green Day During the next 24 hours, the real devasof Service on April 1, tation began. Eighty percent of New Orleans 2013. Above: In October flooded, including the downtown campus and 2005, Scott Cowen a significant portion of the uptown campus, surveys the recovery on which “lost all electricity, all sewer, all water, the uptown campus. He and almost any ability to communicate. So we and the senior adminwere stuck on an island uptown, not even really istrative staff had just knowing what was going on in the rest of the returned to their offices city,” Cowen says. in Gibson Hall. Right: “Once the flooding surfaced and you could Tulane employees see the extent of the damage, you then began to Bill Russell, front, and realize that this was a horrific event, and there David Dean paddle a cawas no way Tulane and the city would recover noe near the university on Aug. 31, 2005. for a period of time or ever be the same again.”


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Ap photo/Bill hABer

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Four days later, Cowen evacuated to Houston, and he began to see the images on television that the rest of the world had been watch­ ing—levee breaches, wrecked homes, scores of stranded residents and a mass of evacuees not likely to return home anytime soon. A long road to recovery lay ahead for the university and the city. “Tulane became the first major research university that actually closed for an entire semester since the Civil War,” he says, “and the entire city went from a population of 400,000 to 10,000 within a matter of weeks. “It was unbelievably complex, difficult and traumatic to rebuild this city and university step­by­step. Those things are still going on today,” Cowen says, “and it’s likely to take closer to a generation to fully realize the implications of the changes made since 2005.”

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Build it and they will come Over 134,000 homes in the city were damaged or destroyed by the storm, depleting a massive amount of the housing stock. Ten years later, the rebuilding and repopulating of New Orleans continues. And in so many ways, Tulane is essential to the recovery. While the sounds of hammers and saws ringing through New Orleans neighborhoods aren’t as cacophonous as they once were, the rebuilding goes on. Two houses on Harmony Street in Central City (one completed in 2014 and the other in 2015) reflect the city’s ongoing recovery progress.


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The Harmony Street houses are the ninth and 10th projects of URBANbuild, a program of the Tulane School of Architecture. Since the storm, URBANbuild has designed and built seven houses in Central City, one in Treme and one in the Ninth Ward. It’s also built a community marketplace in Central City. Through the URBANbuild program, architecture students led by senior professor of practice Byron Mouton have planned and constructed the houses, which, once they are finished, are shown and marketed by Neighborhood Housing Services, a Tulane community partner. URBANbuild launched in 2005—months before Katrina hit. Its houses are sleek, modern adaptations of the classic shotgun and camel­ back styles. The homes are designed to be prototypes and to provide creative ideas for energy­efficient, affordable housing. Walking around a nearly completed home in the 2100 block of Harmony Street last spring, Mouton says the concept behind the homes is to improve on old ideas, not merely replicate old ways. Even before the storm, it was intended to help “neighborhoods that needed atten­ tion”—neighborhoods like Central City that were already struggling with blight and urban decay. The program emphasizes modern design and “progressive thought”—and it was at first met with resistance by people favoring the preservationist paradigm of the past. “After Katrina,” Mouton says, snapping his fingers, “that all changed. After Katrina, people were much more willing to entertain new ideas and options.”

W ruSH Jagoe V

ChaNgINg hOw buSINeSS IS dONe The spirit borne of people fighting to put their lives back together after Katrina—the element of self-survival emanating from rebuilding— fostered a profound change in New Orleans’ business climate. That transformation is evident at the Levy-Rosenblum Institute for Entrepreneurship at the Tulane A. B. Freeman School of Business. The institute and the Tulane Family Business Center are now segments of Freeman’s newly established Albert Lepage Center for Entrepreneurship and Innovation. (See Tulane, p. 38, “Wavemakers,” June 2015.) Before Katrina, the Levy-Rosenblum Institute nurtured entrepreneurs, says Stephanie Kleehammer, director of outreach and community relations for the Lepage Center. But afterward, New Orleanians were much more willing to take a chance on being a business owner. “The people in this city quickly realized after Katrina, if we were going to come back, it was going to be up to us. And there are no bigger fans of the city than the people who live here. “They recognize how special it is. They feel the passion, the love, the endurance—everything that goes along with being part of New Orleans,” Kleehammer says. Social entrepreneurship caught on: Locals recognized the marketbased opportunities for addressing social and environmental challenges. “People shifted their focus from themselves to the community and what they could do to help other people,” says Kleehammer. “The only way we were going to survive was to work together.” Award-winning chef, TV host and author John Besh embodies the new post-Katrina spirit, says Kleehammer. Besh was a successful restaurateur pre-Katrina, but the storm gave him the opportunity to make an impact in the local community while he rebuilt his business. Besh created the nonprofit John Besh Foundation in 2011 to “promote the preservation of the culinary history and culture of New Orleans and Louisiana through the cultivation of new talent and the support of local endeavors.” The foundation offers scholarships to promising local chefs to study in New York City at the International Culinary Center. The scholarship recipients pledge to return and work in the New Orleans restaurant industry once their training is complete. In recognition of his contributions to the culinary culture and business growth of New Orleans, the Levy-Rosenblum Institute named Besh the 2015 Tulane Outstanding Social Entrepreneur of the Year. The award was presented at the Tulane Council of Entrepreneurs Award Gala in May. Another addition to the university’s social innovation/social entrepreneurship portfolio is the Phyllis Taylor Center for Social Innovation and Design Thinking, which opened this year. The social innovation/ social engagement minor is the fastest-growing minor at the university, according to Kenneth Schwartz, dean of the Tulane School of Architecture and director of the Taylor Center. (See Tulane, page 6, “Design Thinker,” June 2015.) There are 130 students who have declared this new minor to date. “We knew that there would be three stages or phases in whatever happened to New Orleans and Tulane,” Scott Cowen says. “First would be basic survival. The second would be recovery. And third, which was the most unpredictable, somehow both the city and the university were

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Architecture students start by analyzing “what works in the neighborhood” and explore issues related to living in New Orleans today, Mouton says. They then build the homes almost from the ground up in 110 days. “What we are trying to do is create housing types that other builders can replicate,” he says. “The intention of the program is to prove to the community that the university is committed to the neighborhood.” The homes serve as possible tools for the future and, at the same time, give help to neighborhoods in need.

going to change in dramatic ways. I call that renewal, and we didn’t have a good idea early on what that renewal would be.” But he thinks the new vitality in the business community is definitely part of it. Cultural ICONS One of the signs of the city’s cultural rebirth was the reappearance of Mardi Gras Indians, in their towering costumes of feathers and beadwork. One place that preserves and honors the Indian tradition is the Guardians Institute: The Donald Harrison Sr. Museum and Cultural Center, near the intersection of Independence and North Johnson streets in the Ninth Ward. New Orleanian Hearrest Harrison started the museum in 2006 to honor her husband, Big Chief Harrison, who died in 1998. Today it has a new home, one with curved lines and an orange color scheme. Tulane architecture professor Scott Ruff designed the brand new building, and Tulane faculty members, students and neighborhood residents built it, along with supporters of the Guardians of the

Entrepreneurial Spirit Facing page: An URBANbuild house on Harmony Street is a project completed this year. Above, top: At the Making a Difference Fair on Oct. 27, 2011, Tamara Dukich (’14) encourages students to volunteer at IN Exchange, a “fair trade” retail shop in the Lavin-Bernick Center. Below: Restaurateur John Besh, center, salutes young chefs Christian LeBlanc and Byron Bradley.

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Flame, the Mardi Gras Indian group Big Chief Harrison founded. The new building opened this spring. “One of the things that was recognized after Hurricane Katrina was that many of the Mardi Gras Indian suits, which had been housed within the chiefs’ homes, were destroyed and lost. These were thousand-dollar cultural artifacts that were gone forever,” Ruff says. “Katrina really brought home the need for some [safe] place to store these artifacts because they are so unique and precious.” In addition to preserving the costumes of Mardi Gras Indians, the institute has space for performances and serves as an educational center offering literacy programs for children. “This is the next step in institutionalizing—making more firm— this idea of passing on the tradition,” Ruff says.

Commitment to Community “A lot of people said [the aftermath of Katrina] was an opportunity for the city and Tulane to reinvent itself,” Cowen says. “I don’t like using the word ‘opportunity’—it’s too exploitive. What I do feel is that the city and Tulane had a responsibility, an obligation to make something positive out of this very tragic event.” In December 2005, the Tulane Board of Administrators approved the Renewal Plan, including a Public Service Graduation Requirement for the university’s undergraduates. Tulane established the Center for Public Service in 2006 and became the first major research university to incorporate service-learning courses and internships into an undergraduate curriculum. Cowen says that service learning and public service at Tulane go far beyond helping communities rebuild here in the city. Part of Tulane’s mission is to “elevate the criticality of civic engagement and involvement in Tulane’s mission and culture and to express this commitment by starting right in our own home,” Cowen says. Those lessons can then be applied when similar crises happen elsewhere, such as after the Haiti earthquake in 2010 and Hurricane Sandy in the Northeast in 2012. Tulane students, faculty and alumni were on the scene of both disasters, providing volunteer assistance. Agnieszka Nance, executive director of the Center for Public Service, says, “Katrina made it clear to everyone that we are all in this together. Tulane’s future is inseparable from the future of New Orleans, and we have an obligation to work together to improve things.” Tulane offers 250 sections of service-learning courses and 400 service internships each year. Choices for community engagement and learning can include diverse topics like studying the environment, tutoring children in public schools, compiling oral histories from residents and working with the local criminal justice system. “Service-learning courses offer Tulane students and faculty the chance to move beyond the books and into all the complexities of


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working with people on the ground,” Nance says. “These courses have the potential to engage our full humanity—not just our We’re All in This intellect—as they give students firsthand exTogether Facing page, top: Mardi periences of projects and programs that aim to Gras Indian suits are make our city and our world better places.” preserved at the GuardFor New Orleanians who lived through the ians Institute: The gut-wrenching times post-Katrina and the long Donald Harrison struggle to rebuild—each year with a new class Sr. Museum. Below: entering Tulane—the storm moves further Musician Christian away in our memory. Scott, from left, aids This fall’s first-year students would have institute directors, his been 8 or 9 years old and in second grade when grandmother, Herreast the images of a flooded New Orleans captiHarrison, and mother, vated the nation. But service learning and Cara Harrison Daniels. public service are now embedded in each stuAbove: Benton Oliver dent’s educational experience and are part of (’15), center, and oththe university’s DNA. ers paint an outdoor “Service has become a defining element of classroom for Playbuild what it means to be a Tulanian,” Nance says, NOLA at the student adding that it brings the city and university service event Outreach Tulane on Aug. 31, 2013. closer together. Cowen retired in summer 2014, and Mike Fitts stepped into the position of president of Tulane that same year. “Katrina ended up bonding Tulane with New Orleans more deeply than ever before,” says President Fitts. “These kinds of connections add new dimensions to a Tulane education and give us a model for a more collaborative, creative, innovative future,” he says. “Out of catastrophe, Tulane developed this unique character, setting it apart and attracting me and thousands of others from around the country and the world. Now, we are ready to rise to new heights of leadership. This is no longer recovery and rebuilding. We are in the renaissance.”

Exhibit tElls thE story

“Katrina & Beyond,” an exhibit commemorating the 10 years that have passed since Hurricane Katrina, opens Aug. 25 in the Lavin-Bernick Center on the Tulane University uptown campus. The exhibit, along with a website of the same name, chronicles the events of the storm, with a Katrina timeline, stories of the leaders who saw Tulane through the crisis, videos and personal memories. The exhibit and website also have interactive features, allowing members of the Tulane community to contribute additional Katrina memories. Kathryn Hobgood Ray, assistant director of web communications at Tulane, who organized the presentations, says, “It’s a story that needs to be told again and again. Viewers will feel incredibly uplifted by all we’ve achieved since Hurricane Katrina.” Katrina was “one of the most challenging moments in the history of Tulane University and New Orleans,” adds Ray. In fall 2005, with the uptown campus closed after the storm, around 13,000 Tulane students continued their studies at over 600 universities around the country. The website contains a map showing the locations as a thank you to those who helped Tulane students in the aftermath of the storm. “We’ll never forget Katrina. The legacy of the storm has turned us into a different, better institution, more connected with our beloved city,” says Ray, who was part of the Tulane hurricane response team during the crisis in 2005. The campus exhibit will be on display through Homecoming weekend, Nov. 6–8, 2015.

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LandsCape In the decade sInce the storm, and wIth $676 mIllIon




tulane has greener, more effIcIent facIlItIes for learnIng, lIvIng and explorIng.

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By Carol J. Schlueter


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Ryan Rivet

The scene is December 2006. Then-president Scott Cowen is leading a true watershed event: the dedication of the new Lavin-Bernick Center for University Life on the Tulane University uptown campus. Just 15 months before, 2 feet of storm water courtesy of Hurricane Katrina covered the area where he and the audience are standing on dry land in Pocket Park on the new building’s side. The university center, christened that day with a new name thanks to lead gifts by the family of Carol Lavin Bernick, had been stripped to its 1959-era concrete bones for a major reconstruction project when Katrina hit. By the dedication, the 142,000-square-foot center, 50 percent larger and with significant new amenities, was still awaiting final construction details but would be ready for the arrival of students and the spring semester only 30 days later. Philip Greer, then-chair of the Board of Tulane, called the ceremony “a very historic occasion for the university that marks Building Recovery the renewal of the university and the city of Left: In early 2006, New Orleans.” workers repair damage That renewal of Tulane campuses has to Newcomb Hall’s roof. continued and shaped the university for the Above: The Lavinfuture, with additional residence halls, major Bernick Center for renovations to historic buildings, improved University Life is lit up research facilities, an athletics complex with at night. The completely two new stadiums and a practice facility, new renovated university pedestrian-friendly looks outside, and a focus center reopened in December 2006. on environmentally sound building practices.

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Green Wave 2 football returns to the uptown campus in September 2014 in the new $73 million, 30,000-seat Yulman Stadium. That fall, celebratory crowds filled the venue for the first true homecoming in 40 years to see the team play on Benson Field. 1


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courtesy of Primate researcH center

The new 1 24,000-squarefoot Donna and Paul Flower Hall for Research and Innovation on the uptown campus is a science and engineering hub. Dedicated in December 2012, it includes the Francis Taylor Laboratory.

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HOW FAR WE’VE COME On Aug. 28, 2005, 250 students were moving into the new Wall Residential College, completed just in time for the semester’s opening. But with the threat of Katrina in the Gulf of Mexico, the students deposited their belongings in Wall and left campus as the university closed. Brand-new Wall Residential College soon had its first occupant: floodwater. “The whole first floor was destroyed, just totally ruined,” remembers Tony Lorino, senior vice president for operations and chief financial officer. “New stainless steel appliances, beautiful hardwood floors. We had to go in there and redo it.” Floodwater affected nearly every campus building between Freret Street and South Claiborne Avenue, and fixing all those problems would take years. “I’m very proud of how far we’ve come since then,” Lorino says. “The only major outstanding issue, facilities-wise, is Howard-Tilton Memorial Library.” More than 8 feet of floodwater in the library’s basement severely damaged collections there as well as electrical and mechanical equipment. Two new floors are being added to the library for those collections and pieces of equipment. That work should be complete this fall, Lorino says. After a decade of campus construction, what project stands out to this 25-year Tulane veteran? “I have to say the Dinwiddie Hall renovation was a major accomplishment,” he says. The 1923-era building had severe problems even before the storm: persistent roof leaks, termites and no central air conditioning. “It was certainly in need. It’s such a beautiful building, and the renovation came out so well, it may be my favorite construction-related project.”

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The dedication of the new Lavin-Bernick Center for University Life occurred in December 2006, 15 months after Katrina floodwater covered the area. In February, 3 2008, Green Wave baseball fans fill up the completed Greer Field at Turchin Stadium. Katrina flooding had swamped the site of the new baseball stadium.


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The men’s 4 and women’s basketball and volleyball programs gain a new practice facility when Tulane dedicates the new 43,000-square-foot Hertz Center in November 2011.


Incoming students 5 now have three new residence colleges to choose from on the uptown campus, each with a facultymember-in-residence. Weatherhead Hall welcomed students in August 2011.


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Barbara 6 Greenbaum House at Newcomb Lawn, home to 256 students and a faculty family, includes a kitchen for cooking classes and a 35-seat classroom. It opened in August 2014. The third new facility (not pictured) is Wall Residential College.


With federal, 7 state and Tulane funding of nearly $71 million, the Tulane National Primate Research Center in Covington, Louisiana, adds three new buildings, with the Regional Biosafety Lab dedicated in December 2008.

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Parker Waters Paula Burch-celentano


Paula Burch-celentano

STUDENT LIFE A “green” focus for both new buildings and renovations, post-storm, also has had a major impact. Dinwiddie was one of the first campus buildings to be certified at the LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) Gold level, an internationally recognized certification system developed by the U.S. Green Building Council. Six other campus projects have gained LEED Gold certification and one other received LEED Silver; certification is pending for Yulman Stadium. Why LEED certification? “The main reason for doing it is, it’s the right thing to do,” Lorino says. “Essentially it focuses on responsible building systems and materials and responsible energy consumption. And it’s in line with the Climate Action Plan that President Cowen signed and the university is committed to.” Cowen signed the American College and University Presidents Climate Commitment in 2008 to achieve carbon neutrality through reduced energy use, green building and other measures. Perhaps the most important changes relate to the student experience. Just as record numbers of students were applying to Tulane, post-Katrina, the university was creating a new student-living experience on campus. The addition of three new multistory residential colleges—Wall, Weatherhead and Greenbaum, each with a facultymember-in-residence for building a close-knit community—“has changed the face of the campus for students,” Lorino says. And if it looks like a new Tulane, it really is.


The three new multistory residential colleges have “changed the face of campus for students.” senior vice president for operations and CFO


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tricia travis

—Tony Lorino,


Paula burch-celentano

courtesy of tulane aluMni relations

Katrina flood10 waters at Howard-Tilton Memorial Library devastate collections in the basement, top, as well as mechanical and electrical systems. Two new floors atop the library, bottom, to be completed this fall, will house the collections and equipment.


August 2010 8 brings the return of Dinwiddie Hall after a major renovation, turning it into a “green� building. Built in 1923, Dinwiddie has all-new museum space for the Middle American Research Institute and new classrooms, offices and elevator access.

After first-floor 12 flooding, left, the Alumni House, annex and garage are elevated and restored to prestorm condition, right. Repairs were complete in January 2011, and in October of that year it is renamed the Bea Field Alumni House, honoring the late alumni director. Michael PaluMbo

Devlin Fieldhouse 9 is now the name of the former Central Building and is the home of Avron B. Fogelman Arena. Significant renovations to the Green Wave basketball facility were completed in 2014.

The 1959-era 11 University Center gets a major upgrade and expansion when the Lavin-Bernick Center for University Life is completed in late 2006. Its sustainable architecture and green design have won national recognition.


Interdisciplinary 13 research is on the rise at the downtown campus through a sweeping renovation of laboratory spaces completed in fall 2013 in the J. Bennett Johnston Health and Environmental Research Building.

Jackson hill

The uptown 14 campus gains a walkable pathway in March 2010 with the opening of McAlister Place Pedestrian Way and the closing of McAlister Drive to cars between Freret Street and Drill Road. New landscaping is also added.


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Water, Water Everywhere With the sea rising and the ground sinking in neW orleans and the rest of southeast louisiana, tulane scientists are scrambling to figure out W h at c a n b e d o n e t o s t o p t h e l o o m i n g d i s a p p e a r a n c e o f a l u s h a n d p r o d u c t i v e c o a s t.


By Mary Ann Travis


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It was Day Nine after Katrina struck in 2005 when Sarah Mack’s bosses at the Sewerage and Water Board of New Orleans called her back to work. Mack had been working as an environmental scientist pre-Katrina. Her supervisors brought her back as emergency manager, she says, because she could communicate what is “a real and what is a perceived risk.” Seeing the massive destructive from the storm opened Mack’s eyes. In a city defined by water, with a river winding through it and a lake to the north, pumping stations are important. Levees are essential. And drainage is a necessity. But—and this was the lightbulb moment—“we could do whatever we want within our system but it isn’t going to do a lot of good unless we address the coastal land loss.” That realization led Mack, who has a master’s degree (2004) and PhD (2009) in public health from Tulane, to found her own company, Tierra Resources, in 2007. The company is now involved in several projects with Louisiana businesses such as Entergy and Conoco-Phillips to transact carbon credits in the wetlands. The oil companies and power plants invest in wetland restoration to offset the carbon dioxide emissions—or greenhouse gases—that result from their operations. Tierra Resources uses a relatively straightforward but data-heavy measurement of the photosynthesis process: The wetlands take the carbon dioxide out of the air. The carbon in the carbon dioxide gets incorporated into the plants and roots and soil. So, carbon dioxide, a major factor in warming up the atmosphere, is naturally stored as long as the wetland is in place. “We are the ones that actually introduced wetlands to emission trading,” says Mack. “It took us five years but we developed the very first methodology to transact carbon credits in wetlands.” She’s working with private companies “because these projects get bogged down in bureaucracy when you’re working with the government.” Mack wants more private enterprises to incorporate coastal restoration into their business models. The coast is in “dire straits,” she says. All her calculations show that land is rapidly disappearing and the Gulf of Mexico is fast encroaching. In the Leeville-Port Fourchon area, on the southernmost coast of Louisiana, Mack predicts that large blocks of land will be gone in 14 years. “That’s the window of opportunity,” she says. “And it’s not long.”

Louisiana Land A NASA Earth Observatory image from 2014 illustrates the relationship between the Mississippi and Atchafalaya rivers. While the present course of the Mississippi River brings it southeast of New Orleans, the sharp oxbows at several points along the river show how abruptly it could alter course. Infrastructure built by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers controls the Mississippi and protects communities from major floods.

LEARNING FROM LAST ICE AGE Sarah Mack’s work offers “a bit of hope,” says Torbjörn Törnqvist, Vokes Geology Professor and chair of the Department of Earth and Environmental Sciences. Otherwise, if nothing is done to reduce greenhouse gases, “it’s going to get ugly.” The goal should be to strive for carbon neutrality, says Törnqvist. That is, like in Mack’s enterprise, “whatever carbon is released into the atmosphere is balanced by what is taken out—anything from plants to the ocean to perhaps geoengineering projects, where we take CO2 and store it in the subsurface.” Sea levels are rising worldwide. And this acceleration is directly related to rising temperature in the atmosphere, which comes from increased emission of carbon dioxide. In the 20th century, the globally averaged rate of sea-level rise was 1 to 2 millimeters per year, but in the last 20 years it has ramped up to just over 3 millimeters per year. And in coastal

“If we don’t do anything about greenhouse gas emissions and let climate changes continue to accelerate—and we don’t do anything about restoring the coast by means of big river diversions—yes, New Orleans is still going to exist but it’s increasingly going to look like a precarious peninsula sticking out into the Gulf of Mexico.” —Torbjörn Törnqvist Louisiana, it is rising even faster, more like 10 millimeters per year, due to rapid land subsidence. “The rate of sea-level rise in the last century is the highest we’ve seen in the last 7,000 years,” says Törnqvist. “That’s when the North American ice sheet was totally gone.” Törnqvist is looking even further back, to the last gasp of the last Ice Age—8,000 to 10,000 years ago. In his research, for which he recently received a $400,000 grant from the National Science Foundation, he takes core samples from the Mississippi Delta to study the interactions between the melt water of the ice sheets and the rising seas. At that time, the seas around the globe rose a whopping centimeter per year. Climate conditions then were somewhat comparable with today, says Törnqvist. And, although the warming of the climate then had to do with the way the Earth orbited the sun and not greenhouse gas emissions as it does today, we can learn a lesson about accelerated sea-level rise: It’s hard to stop once it gets started. As a geologist, Törnqvist usually thinks in terms of hundreds or thousands of years. He is willing, though, to peer a mere 50 years ahead to imagine a future for New Orleans. He says, “If we don’t take any action, if we don’t do anything about greenhouse gas emissions and let climate changes continue to accelerate—and we don’t do anything about restoring the coast by means of big river diversions—yes, New Orleans is still going to exist but it’s increasingly going to look like a precarious peninsula sticking out into the Gulf of Mexico.” CRUCIBLE FOR UNDERSTANDING In 2007, Louisiana created the Coastal Protection and Restoration Authority and developed a Coastal Master Plan, recognizing the threats to the way of life and the land of the state. Five years later, the plan was

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Courtesy u.s. Coast Guard

The biggest priority for coastal restoration gets back to earth building—or moving mud. “Our greatest assets are sediment and sand and water. Without those building blocks, doing coastal restoration is very difficult.” —Michael Blum

revised into “Louisiana’s Comprehensive Master Plan for a Sustainable Coast.” A new plan will be coming out in 2017. The plan is based on “strong science and a good vision for coastal restoration of Louisiana,” says Michael Blum, associate professor of ecology and evolutionary biology, Eugenie Schwartz Professor of River and Coastal Studies and director of the Tulane Center for Bioenvironmental Research. The plan addresses key issues of flood protection, natural processes, coastal habitats, cultural heritage and the working coast. “I wouldn’t say it’s a blueprint but it’s a well-thought-out vision for 50 years of restoration,” says Blum. The current projected cost of implementing the plan is $50 billion over 50 years. “It’s not going to happen overnight,” says Blum, “but it is going to happen.” With the infusion of cash from penalties to be paid by the BP oil company for damages stemming from the 2010 Deepwater Horizon disaster, the state can now get busy making the plan a reality. The BP settlement that was announced in July will provide at least $500 million per year over 15 years for coastal restoration and protection. In addition, Louisiana will get a share of the $5.5 billion that BP is paying in penalties under the Clean Water Act for the company’s responsibility for the disaster—the largest accidental marine oil spill in the history of the petroleum industry. Blum, who also directs the Tulane Riverfront Initiative, says that it’s important to keep in mind that the energy infrastructure is “so deeply embedded within our coastal environment that you can’t talk about the coast without talking about the energy infrastructure. You have to talk about pipelines. You have to talk about canals. You have to talk about all of the platforms that have been built up over the years that are effectively part of the physical environment of the coast. One has to talk as much about infrastructure as you have to talk about ecosystems.” A pragmatic, scientific and practical perspective is what Blum expects the Tulane Riverfront Initiative to bring to the coastal restoration effort. The inaugural 8,000-square-foot Tulane River and Coastal Center, slated to open in early 2016, will include labs, offices and conference space on the Mississippi River waterfront close to the Ernest N.


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Morial Convention Center and the Central Business District. The Riverfront Initiative has received funding from the U.S. DepartOil and Water ment of Commerce and the federal Delta Above: Oil is burned off Regional Authority to spur economic dethe Gulf of Mexico after velopment through research, training and the Deepwater Horizon business incubation. explosion in April 2010. BP damage settlements “Our role is to sustain and improve the diaas a result of the logue” among competing interests in coastal disaster are providing restoration and protection, says Blum. The an infusion of cash for priorities include fishing sustainability, wildcoastal restoration in life protection, oil and gas production and, of Louisiana. Facing course, building land. page: Marshes are a The biggest priority for coastal restorafirst line of defense tion gets back to earth building—or moving against storm surge mud, jokes Blum. “Our greatest assets are for the city of New sediment and sand and water. Without those Orleans. This view building blocks, doing coastal restoration is from Paris Road in very difficult.” Chalmette, Louisiana, An efficient, cost-effective and sustainable shows the city skyline way to build land is through river diversion in the background. projects, most coastal scientists agree. Through the eons, the Mississippi River meandered, flooding its banks and creating land in the process. In the 20th century, however, the river became increasingly confined in a straitjacket of levees. Levees, without a doubt, are essential for protecting property and people. But a controlled dismantling of some levees in Southeast Louisiana would help build land through sediment dispersal and slow the Gulf of Mexico’s inexorable inundation. River diversion, though, is only a part of the complex coastal restoration plan. Blum’s own research is on marsh grass, which can be another tool for shoreline remediation and erosion reduction. Grasses have an “anchoring capacity, holding soil in place,” says Blum. After the BP oil spill when 4.9 million barrels of oil spewed for 87 days, there was a “bathtub ring effect” along the contaminated

SAFER AND SMARTER Mark Davis knows water well. As a senior research fellow and director of the Institute on Water Resources Law and Policy at Tulane Law School, Davis leads scholars who foster “the development of laws and policies that promote the sustainable management of water resources.” These scholars are not sitting on the sidelines. Like Blum, they are playing the game. “And every at bat matters,” says Davis. There is no time to lose. “The distinctions between basic and applied research are not necessarily the same [here] as they are elsewhere,” says Davis. The cost of waiting to act until there is absolute certainty about the problems or the opportunities will be too great. “If you wait too long, it may be too late to do anything,” says Davis. Simple recovery from Katrina is not the major issue for Davis. It’s not a matter of patching things up and moving ahead. Yes, “we have a more robust levee system and drainage system,” says Davis.

But sustainability is “going to have to become a way of life. It’s going to have to be how we learn more about ourselves, how we learn about the world around us, how we adapt and what we’re willing to commit ourselves to. This is not easy, cheap stuff.” The state’s master plan for coastal restoration and an urban water plan for dealing with street flooding and using runoff to help with ground subsidence, which was devised with input from Davis’ shop, are good beginnings. But they will require more funding than even BP can provide. Predictable funding sources must be identified and tapped. “If we don’t step up and invest in the kinds of things that have to be paid for, no one else is going to do it for us,” says Davis. New Orleans is not alone in its water challenges. Florida, Texas, New York, Arizona and California are coping with other water and sustainability issues. They may be living beyond their water means or dealing with storm issues. “You realize that at some point, you come to terms with those things. You manage for them or you get managed by them,” says Davis. That’s what makes New Orleans a “universal city” at this juncture. Before Katrina, this was a “decidedly unsustainable place,” says Davis. But so were Las Vegas, Phoenix and Miami. Now the eyes of the world are on New Orleans. And other places can learn from what’s going on here. “We’ve given ourselves a shot at sustainability,” says Davis. New Orleans is a “remarkably exciting city to live in, and it’s an exciting time to be in it,” he says. “This is a place that is trying to learn and do. We are safer and smarter because we’ve had to be.” There is a sense of urgency here. “Tulane needs to stay in the mix,” adds Davis. “The kind of energy that a university like Tulane can provide is indispensable. ” And with a strong academic university like Tulane acting to fulfill its civic responsibility, “there’s probably not a better place to be on the planet.”

Paula Burch-celentano

shoreline. As a consequence, an acute loss of grasses occurred. Where grasses typically grew right up to the water’s edge, they struggled to survive, further exacerbating land loss. Grasses have been replanted in some areas of the oil spill—and some grasses have rejuvenated on their own. Blum and a team of collaborators are exploring which kind of grass thrives best where—and what is the most sustainable grass for erosion control. “It’s an interesting time,” say Blum. “There’s lots of activity. And Tulane has positioned itself well to engage on a lot of issues. From a scholarship perspective, this is an extraordinary place to be.” Louisiana is a “crucible for understanding issues related to coastal and community resiliency,” says Blum. “I would challenge anybody to come up with a better example, a better laboratory for understanding and for studying issues related to sea-level rise, global environmental change and disaster response at a fundamental level.”

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Long Way Home Music—and the Musicians—are a siren call to Gwen thoMpkins, lurinG her back to new orleans post-katrina. By Gwen Thompkins, NC ’87 T U L A N E MAGA Z I N E S E P T E M B E R 2 0 1 5



PAulA Burch-celentAno

Gwen Thompkins discusses the origins and evolution of Louisiana music every week on her radio show, "Music Inside Out." Previous pages: Music buoyed Gwen Thompkins in her travels as an NPR correspondent, and today at home in New Orleans.

At this writing, I hear footsteps on my roof as workmen repair damage from a recently fallen tree. Make that a large tree. No, make that the Hammer of Thor. It was an old Chinese tallow, otherwise known as a gray popcorn, or even a chicken tree. These are not names of distinction. The U.S. Geological Survey’s most common descriptor for the Chinese tallow is “invasive,” which is like a really bad “Yelp” rating, but in nature. As it turns out, that 40-foot pile of chicken smashed my air conditioner like a clove of roasted garlic. I could describe what it feels like to live in New Orleans over summer break without cool air, or what insurance adjusters are like, or the relationship among air-conditioning compressors, hydrochlorofluorocarbons and the Montreal Protocol. But instead, Cole Porter comes to mind: It was just one of those things Just one of those crazy flings One of those bells that now and then rings Just one of those things Fact is, I’ve seen worse. We all have. This summer marks the 10th anniversary of one of the biggest hammers of Thor to hit New Orleans and the Gulf Coast. Her name was Katrina and may she die a thousand miserable deaths. The hurricane and flood set in motion a series of events that sent me scrambling around the world. Yes, I made it back—and with a fistful of frequent flier miles. But in the spirit of Odysseus, who spent



10 years en route home to his kingdom—through wars and weather, Lotus-Eaters, cannibals, a cyclops and an angry god—I can’t help but think there had to be an easier way. Leaving home shouldn’t involve so much water, so many deaths and such a long tail of recovery. But it does make for a good story. The Odyssey has never been out of print. New Orleans isn’t my kingdom, exactly, but my tether to the city has always been strong. I was born here, schooled here, secured my first job here. Even after moving to Washington, D.C., for a position at National Public Radio, I came home often. I paid taxes here, visited my dentist here, wrote checks on my bank account here. This went on for 10 years, until there was no “here” here. Shortly after the storm, NPR producer Sarah Oliver and I made music-rich stories about New Orleans-in-recovery. The NPR audience responded enthusiastically. We even received a note from the late Ed Bradley of CBS, who loved New Orleans like a native. Bradley understood that there are places in the world where music cannot be separated from daily life. And the tragedy of post-Katrina New Orleans was that the music had stopped. No bass drum. No buzz rolls on the snare. No Irma Thomas at the Lion’s Den. No birdsong. That made for a profound and uncomfortable silence. But the U.S. Army Survival Manual, which I’d gotten hold of while evacuating the city, proved invaluable: … Your present discomfort is a temporary problem … knowing how much discomfort you can take and understanding your demand for comfort will help you to carry on. Comfort is not essential!

The exclamation point was the Army’s idea, not mine. But they’re right: Attitude may be the most vital asset in surviving any reversal —a hurricane, a cyclops or even East Africa—which was my next reporting assignment. I took the job as NPR’s East Africa bureau chief in 2006 because I wanted to be a foreign correspondent. And I knew it would take time to rebuild my house in Pontchartrain Park. So rather than wallow in Washington, it seemed a good idea to light out like Odysseus and take the long way home. In retrospect, Odysseus may not have been the best role model. He was always in trouble, sometimes of his own making. But that’s the bane and fun of being an East Africa correspondent—anticipating trouble, or at the very least working around it: mosquitoes, equipment failure, mosquitoes, a flat tire in the desert, jungle mud, pirates, blackouts, bedbugs, roadblocks, monkeys, snakes, armed rebellion and, of course, mosquitoes. The likelihood of any of the above determined how to prepare for a reporting trip. On a quick science assignment to Antarctica in 2008, a whole new set of potential troubles emerged. Those were … colder. Over time, I began to look for opportunities to tell stories with music (within reason). I wrote about Kenya’s fascination with Dolly Parton. I wrote about Ugandan civil war songs, Rastafarians in Ethiopia and a fern bar in South Sudan that played R&B music nonstop. I recorded cruise ship workers dancing in the polar night to Usher, Lil Jon and Ludacris. As it turns out, music is an excellent reporting device worldwide because nothing transports an audience to a new reality quite as fast. Once I traveled from northern Sudan to New Orleans in three notes or less. I’d been detained overnight in a visa flap west of the capital city of Khartoum. And a long day of arguing with Sudanese officials had made me feel as drained as the desiccated camels lying dead on the side of the highway. With a heavy heart, I turned on the truck radio and heard a voice from my hometown: It’s very clear, our love is here to stay Not for a year, but forever and a day The radio and the telephone And movies that we know May just be passing fancies And in time may go … Never have Louis Armstrong and Ella Fitzgerald made such an impression. Thanks to them and the Gershwin brothers, I knew it was time to come home. It took awhile, but by 2012, I was back in my house in Pontchartrain Park and host of the public radio program “Music Inside Out.” The show is a giant valentine to the people and culture of this extraordinary part of the world. Louisiana’s musical landscape is like no other. And we discuss its origins and evolution every week. What we do is a form of explanatory journalism that just happens to sound like a rollicking good time. And the formula works because our guests make learning fun. Most recently, we spoke with Rickie Lee Jones, who now lives in New Orleans and has released a new, locally produced album called The Other Side of Desire. That’s such a good title. Because when reaching a destination— through tempests and adventure—all travelers come to the other side of desire. Sure, there’s the occasional discomfort of a chicken tree, or—in Odysseus’ case—a doubtful wife in Ithaca. But he had his Hollywood ending, and so did I. We both made it home. Gwen Thompkins is a Visiting Scholar at Newcomb College Institute. “Music Inside Out” airs on WWNO-FM on Thursdays at 7 p.m. and Saturdays at noon.

Never have Louis Armstrong and Ella Fitzgerald made such an impression. Thanks to them and the Gershwin brothers, I knew it was time to come home.

Gwen's Pontchartrain Park P Playlist “I Like It Like That,” Chris Kenner, Land of a Thousand Dances “Who Will Buy,” Aaron Neville, Nature Boy: The Standards Album “Mardi Gras Mambo,” The Hawketts, New Orleans Party Classics “Coochie Molly,” Wild Magnolias, Life Is a Carnival “Hold On,” Aaron Neville, The Golden Hits “It’s Raining,” Irma Thomas, Ruler of Hearts “Action Speaks Louder Than Words,” Chocolate Milk, Ice Cold Funk “Let Me Take You There,” Marva Wright, Blues Queen of New Orleans

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Once and Future

Katrinas A geOgRApheR speculATes ABOuT W h AT O N c e WA s , W h AT M i g h T h Av e BeeN ANd WhAT sTill cAN Be iN NeW O R l e A N s ’ R e l AT i O N s h i p W i T h WAT e R .

By Richard Campanella

Kenny Harrison

When hurricanes approached New Orleans in historical times, city dwellers generally did not worry about Katrina-like surge flooding; wind was usually their major concern. Nor did they evacuate the city; indeed, coastal denizens would flock to New Orleans, not away from it, and locals took shelter in sturdy buildings if they left home at all. New Orleanians in the 1800s saved their deepest fears for far deadlier and more destructive disasters—epidemics, fires and Mississippi River floods, in that order. Today it’s the exact opposite. We no longer worry about river floods, and fret no more or less about fire and disease than other Americans. But as for hurricanes, we now dread their fatal surges much more so


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than their winds, and join our coastal neighbors in fleeing the entire region when a big one approaches. What changed was our environment, courtesy of our actions. We scored and scoured the coastal wetlands with oil, gas and navigation canals, allowing saltwater to intrude and marshes to erode. We drained the backswamp—a low part of the floodplain—which caused it to sink below sea level, and encouraged its urbanization without ensuring sturdy flood protection. We put the Mississippi River in a straitjacket of artificial levees, and inadvertently starved the deltaic plain of its two most critical resources, freshwater and sediment. We viewed every drop of rainwater falling within the metropolis as an enemy, and strove (less than successfully) to pump every drop out, rather than storing as much as possible on the landscape and letting it recharge the groundwater. We abandoned our architectural tradition of building houses raised on piers, in favor of poured concrete slabs flush with the ground, so that water accumulation in the street became water in our homes. In sum, we imposed engineering and architectural rigidity on a natural environment that is fundamentally fluid, and convinced ourselves we had mastered it even as it collapsed. Make no mistake: The catastrophe of 10 years ago can be blamed, proximately at least, on the failure of underfunded, underengineered federal levees and floodwalls in the face of a very powerful storm surge. But ultimately, the Katrina deluge happened because a century of environmental degradation made the task of preventing that deluge more and more tenuous.

and port commerce. But it would also have benefited from well over a thousand additional square miles of coastal wetlands, which have otherwise eroded. There would have been no Mississippi River-Gulf Outlet Canal (MR-GO) to allow saltwater to intrude, no “funnel” at the juncture of the Intracoastal Waterway and the MR-GO, and no Industrial Canal to bring the seawater to the doorsteps of adjacent neighborhoods. Katrina’s surge would have had no eastern ingress, and instead would have encountered friction as it moved across healthier marshes. Cypress swamps, which never would have died, would have thwarted the surge’s advance toward the city. What if we placed our circa-1900 drainage pumps at the lakefront perimeter, rather than the interior of the city? The 17th Street, Orleans Avenue, and London Avenue outfall canals would have been designed to flow below grade level; there would have been no floodwalls to rupture, and thus no floodwaters in Metairie and Gentilly. What if we had developed an “open” drainage system a hundred years ago, one that stored runoff on the landscape, like those in Rotterdam and Amsterdam? We would have had less subsidence and a whole lot less bimonthly street puddling. What if we had built all residential structures well above the grade, as we did historically? There would have been substantially less damage from Katrina’s flood, and we’d all be enjoying lower flood insurance rates today. And what if the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers had built suitable levees, if Congress had adequately funded them, and if local authorities had properly inspected them? You wouldn’t be reading this article right now.

IMAGINE THIS I offer here an “alternative history”—that is, a geography of New Orleans that might have been, vis-à-vis Hurricane Katrina, had we made different decisions over the past century. Imagine, for example, if we had never drained the backswamp in the early 1900s, and places like Metairie, Lakeview, Gentilly, eastern New Orleans and the fringes of the West Bank remained swamp and marsh. One might argue we’d have missed the growth opportunities enjoyed by rival American cities and ended up a smaller metropolis, perhaps the size of Mobile or Pensacola. All the great family stories and local culture of those neighborhoods would not have played out in those spaces, and we might be the lesser for it today. But one could also argue that, undrained, metro New Orleans would still be above sea level and buffered by expansive wetlands. If any of Katrina’s surge made it upon the landscape, it would have flooded uninhabited wetlands—and barely, because they would not have been bowl-shaped in their topography and able to impound water. Katrina would have been a windy day, not a lethal catastrophe. We’d be living on a sinuous urban footprint, following the shape of the Mississippi, at higher population densities entirely on higher ground. What if we never dug those canals across thousands of linear miles of coastal Louisiana? The region would have been deprived of much of the wealth and jobs produced by two of its largest industries, petroleum

FUTURE PLANS “Alternative history” gets us nowhere in remaking the geographical decisions of times past. But it does encourage us to think long and hard before repeating past decisions that have proved to bear more costs than benefits. May we drain, levee and urbanize no more wetlands on this deltaic plain. May we dig no more canals except for minor ones needed for coastal restoration. May we mitigate the impact of future disasters by building above the grade, raising existing houses, strengthening architectural codes and ensuring evacuation is available for everyone. May we prioritize for radical coastal restoration, using all tactics available as soon as possible. May we recognize that difficult decisions lie ahead, and that there is no way we can sustain this region into the 22nd century without returning parts of it to nature in the 21st century. Richard Campanella, a Tulane School of Architecture geographer, is the author of Bienville’s Dilemma, Geographies of New Orleans, Delta Urbanism, Bourbon Street: A History, and other books. Find his articles at http://richcampanella.com, and reach him at rcampane@tulane.edu or @nolacampanella on Twitter.

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NEW ORLEANS NOVELIST Curbstone Books/Northwestern University Press published Navel of the Moon: A Novel by Mary Helen Lagasse (UC ’78) in June. It is a follow-up to her debut, The Fifth Sun, which won the Miguel Mármol Prize, the Premio Aztlán Literary Prize, the Independent Publisher Best Multicultural Fiction Award and ForeWord Magazine’s Book of the Year Award.


Cathi Milanes


Dr. Dominique “Nikki” Jodry (M ’14) chose Tulane University School of Medicine because in New Orleans she knew she could make a difference. Jodry, a native of Seattle, says she has always been involved in the community in which she lives. After attending the University of Washington, she moved to Los Angeles for two years as a teacher with Teach For America. During her first year at medical school, Jodry put out feelers to determine where there was a need. She wanted to help bolster the healthcare infrastructure that had been damaged so severely after Hurricane Katrina. Among other organizations, Jodry approached Grace House, which supports women on the road to sobriety, and discovered the women did not have access to primary healthcare services. With mentoring from Dr. William “Rusty” Robinson, a professor of obstetrics and gynecology, and collaboration with other medical students, Jodry spearheaded the founding of a clinic for the Grace House women. A new group of student leaders continues to operate the student-run clinic. “My Grace House experience had a profound effect on my career,” Jodry says. Now an OB/GYN resident at Emory University School of Medicine in Atlanta, Jodry anticipates launching a project to offer reproductive health services to women at the Dekalb County Jail and the Atlanta Metropolitan Transitional Center, a minimum-security prison. “Incarcerated women are 11 times at risk of cervical cancer compared to the general population of women,” she says.—Fran Simon



Making a Difference After helping found a health clinic for women in New Orleans while she was a medical student, Dr. Nikki Jodry is launching a clinic for women in prison in Atlanta.

MEMORIES ARE MADE OF THIS Reunion year alumni— those whose class years end in 5 or 0—will have special opportunities to get together with classmates at this year’s Homecoming.

sallY asheR

Women’s Health

There is nothing like the joy of coming home. Returning to Tulane each fall to laugh with classmates, eat classic New Orleans cuisine, listen to music and cheer on the Green Wave is like a second-line down memory lane. This year, Tulane alumni, fans and family are invited back to campus Nov. 6–8 for a weekend of fun and festivities. “Last year, thousands of alumni and families celebrated the return of Homecoming to the campus we all love,” said James Stofan, vice president for alumni relations. “This year, we’re excited to make Homecoming, Reunion and Family Weekend better than ever before as we celebrate everything that makes our university so special.” This year’s festivities include concerts on the quad, a carnival, a speakers’ series and an all-alumni party on Friday night. Homecoming provides an opportunity to celebrate the university’s schools and colleges, fraternities and sororities—and the 100th anniversary of student government. The highlight of the weekend will be tailgating on campus on Saturday with special tents for alumni and parents—and the Green Wave football team’s matchup against the UConn Huskies at Yulman Stadium. In addition to Homecoming events scheduled for all alumni, classes whose years end in a 5 or 0 will celebrate their reunions this year with exclusive activities on campus as well as class parties on the town. Check homecoming.tulane.edu for more information.—Bradley Charlesworth

Dispatch Al Andrews W H E R E

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1940s The Greater Baton Rouge Chapter of the Association of Fundraising Professionals recognized ALBERT FRAENKEL (B ’47) and his family as the 2014 Outstanding Philanthropist. The family made a $2.2 million in-kind donation to the Greater Baton Rouge Food Bank, which allowed the organization to expand into a new facility. For more than 20 years, Albert and ELLIE FRAENKEL (NC ’55) have tithed more than 12 percent of their income to different faith-based, healthcare and educational causes. They currently live in San Francisco. 1960s JACK KUSHNER (A&S ’60) was recognized in July as an honorary professor of medicine and surgery by the Appointments Board of Cambridge—the first American to receive the honor. He previously received the Cambridge Certificate at Queen’s College in 2014, when he was invited to lecture. His lecture and ongoing research on the current treatment of glioblastomas will be published in the Journal of Personalized Medicine Universe (Elsevier).

MICHAEL BOTNICK (L ’75), of Gordon Arata, obtained his mediator certification. Botnick has been a commercial litigator for more than 35 years; his experience encompasses construction, transactions, real estate, contracts and corporate law as well as trusts and estates and personal injury. He has been recognized in Chambers USA: America’s Leading Lawyers for Business, Louisiana Super Lawyers and New Orleans Magazine’s “Top Lawyers” for his work in construction law. STEPHEN WEBRE (G ’75, ’80), a professor of history at Louisiana Tech University, was selected to present his paper, “In the Wilderness of Words: Friar Antonio Margil de Jesús, the Franciscan Missions and the Call to War, Guatemala, 1684-1706,” at a conference in Mexico. The research documents more than four decades of the friar’s missionary work from Costa Rica to Northwest Louisiana. SHERRY KARVER (G ’78) exhibited new photobased work with narrative text at Sue Greenwood Fine Art in Laguna Beach, California, this summer. STEVEN B. LOEB (A&S ’78, A ’82), an attorney with Breazeale, Sachse & Wilson, was listed in the 2015 edition of Chambers USA: America’s Leading Lawyers for Business for Louisiana in the practice area of construction. CURTIS MOSLEY (A&S ’78) recently earned a master’s degree in Christian studies from Grand Canyon University—his second graduate degree. SCOTT A. NORTON (A&S ’78, M ’86, PHTM ’86) is chief of dermatology for the Diana L. and


1970s GLEN LEROY FAIA (A ’73) was named president of Boston Architectural College.

BAMBOO TECHNOLOGY After 40 years in the apparel industry, Al Andrews (A&S ’67, L ’71) may be about to score a lifelong dream of having his own renowned brand. “Since I was a little boy with a newspaper route, I always wanted to start a company from the ground up, create something people wanted, have a national brand,” says the Michigan native, who came to Tulane on a basketball scholarship and is a member of the Tulane Athletics Hall of Fame. His family’s sportswear brand, tasc Performance, is growing exponentially, selling all over the United States and in five other countries. The Tulane Bookstore on the uptown campus sells tasc Performance sportswear manufactured from BamCo, a fabric derived from bamboo, organic cotton and just a touch of Lycra. It took two years of research and development with a colleague in India for Andrews to produce BamCo in a patent-pending process. “We have the ‘wow’ factor with it,” says Andrews. “It’s the first fabric in my long career in the apparel industry that there’s a positive emotional response from the consumer when they touch it.” For 20 years, Andrews was president of Resilio sportswear, a division of Wembley, the New Orleans–based company that is known for its neckties. Then, he launched his own sportswear company, Bayou Sport. In addition to sales, marketing and merchandising, Andrews traveled the world to source product, logging 32 trips to Hong Kong and numerous trips to Taiwan, Korea and other locales. “I’ve seen a lot of trends over the years. Some skyrocketed while some didn’t,” he says. For Andrews, it’s all about the fabric. He saw the emergence of “technical, performance fabrics.” But when he purchased some of the polyester workout wear, he hated it. It wasn’t comfortable, it stuck to the skin during exercise, and after sweating it stunk. BamCo is different. “Inherently, bamboo wicks moisture, has 99.9 percent UVprotection and dries quick,” says Andrews. Microbes don’t grow on the tasc Performance fabric, while some staphylococcus bacterial species actually prefer to grow on polyester, he adds.—FrAN SiMON

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SPECIAL SAINT Former New Orleans Saints player Steve Gleason (B ’11), who has Lou Gehrig’s disease (ALS), won the Professional Football Writers of America’s George Halas Award for overcoming adversity and succeeding. Gleason has helped raise funds to provide individuals with neuromuscular diseases or injuries with leading-edge technology, equipment and services through his Gleason Initiative Foundation and Team Gleason organization.


Y ’ A T !

Stephen A. Goldberg Center for Community and Pediatric Health at the Children’s National Health System; he previously served as interim chief. Norton is on faculty at George Washington University, Georgetown University and Howard University. Additionally, he serves as a consultant to, among others, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and National Institutes of Health in the fields of dermatology, tropical medicine and bioterrorism. 1980s RAMÓN “RAY” ABADIN III (A&S ’81) is president and WILLIAM J. “BILL” SCHIFINO JR. (A&S ’82) is president-elect of the Florida Bar Association— the third-largest bar association in the country, with more than 98,000 lawyers. Abadin is a partner at Sedgwick’s Miami office. Schifino is managing partner in the Tampa, Florida, office of Burr Forman. DAVID J. BARTON (A&S ’81) was appointed by the Supreme Court of Pennsylvania in May as a member of the Court of Judicial Discipline. The court decides disciplinary cases filed against Pennsylvania’s more than 1,000 magisterial district, common pleas, and appellate court judges and justices of the state Supreme Court. Barton has served as a magisterial district judge since 1996. He also maintains a limited law practice. GLENN GOEDECKE (A&S ’81), executive vice president of business development for Mayer Electric Supply, is chair of the National Association of Electrical Distributors. The role includes presiding over the industry’s national conference and serving as an ambassador for the industry. Mayer Electric Supply is a wholesale distributor of electrical equipment and supplies. The family-owned business is among the largest electrical distributors in the country. NORMA JEAN “JEANIE” SMITH MATTEI (E ’82, G ’94), an engineering professor at the University of New Orleans, is president-elect of the American Society of Civil Engineers. She will be the third woman to hold the position in the organization’s 163-year history. In 2012, President Barack Obama named Mattei one of three civilian members of the Mississippi River Commission, which researches and provides policy and work recommendations covering flood control, navigation and environmental projects. Mattei has been a member of the UNO faculty since 1995. DAVID ELLIS (M ’83) was appointed chief medical officer of Pardee Hospital in Hendersonville, North Carolina. He has served as interim CMO of the hospital since November. Ellis, an obstetrician/gynecologist, has held several positions with Pardee, including medical chief of staff, chair of the medical executive committee and a member of the hospital board. RICHARD P. “RICK” SNYDER (B ’83) was promoted to rear admiral, assigned as director for plans, policy and strategy, J-5, Headquarters U.S. Northern Command, Peterson Air Force



Base, Colorado. He is currently director, 21st Century Sailor Office, N17, Office of the Chief of Naval Operations, Arlington, Virginia. He has earned numerous recognitions, including the Defense Superior Service Medal, Legion of Merit (two awards) and the Defense Meritorious Service Medal.

(January 2015). Bush, an interior designer, founded his own firm in Los Angeles in 2002. He is widely admired for his relevant and keen understanding of architecture and design and for his ability to mix period and contemporary furnishings. Bush’s designs have been featured in more than 40 publications worldwide.

The American Bar Association is recognizing LESLIE SILVERSTEIN (NC ’85, L ’88) with its prestigious Pro Bono Publico Award this year. Silverstein has a solo practice in Portland, Maine.

MONTE K. HURST (A&S ’93) joined Hallett & Perrin, a full-service law firm in Dallas, as an equity shareholder. Hurst’s practice primarily consists of representing parties in employment and business matters in state and federal courts, in arbitration proceedings, and before state and federal administrative agencies. Hurst continues to be recognized each year in the Texas Super Lawyers award listing, and to be elected by his peers to D Magazine’s “Best Lawyers in Dallas” for labor and employment law.

STACI FISCHER (NC ’86) was named the “physician of the year” by the Rhode Island Medical Women’s Association. The award is given annually to a female physician who excels in the field of medicine and in community service. In 2008, Fischer became the director of graduate medical education at Lifespan, responsible for the oversight of nearly 70 residency and fellowship training programs with nearly 600 participants. LT. COL. JAMES H. BOURGEOIS (A&S ’89) is the commander of the 2205 Mobilization Support Battalion of the U.S. Army Reserves in Bossier City, Louisiana. THOMAS FLANAGAN (L ’89), an attorney at Flanagan Partners in New Orleans, was listed in Chambers USA 2015 in the areas of commercial litigation and appellate practice.

1990s The Palm Beach County Bar Association presented ADAM RABIN (A&S ’90) with its Sidney A. Stubbs Professionalism Award in March. The award recognized Rabin for leading the innovative South Florida “Got Civility?” project, which included drafting uniform standards of professional courtesy and civility for South Florida, and working with the largest county and minority bar associations in South Florida to jointly adopt the uniform standards. TRAVIS LANGLEY (G ’91, 93) is a professor of psychology at Henderson State University and the author of Batman and Psychology: A Dark and Stormy Knight. He edits the PsychGeeks series of books from Sterling Publishing, including The Walking Dead Psychology: Psych of the Living Dead and Star Wars Psychology: Dark Side of the Mind. Psychology Today runs his online column, “Beyond Heroes and Villains.” TERESA MARIE BECKETT (NC ’92) was named commercial director of Lifestyle Travel Services, an ultra-luxury concierge service in Mexico’s Riviera Nayarit. For more information, visit www.ltsmexico.com.

MATTHEW FOSS (G ’97), physics teacher and science department chair at St. Mary’s Dominican High School in New Orleans, received the 2015 Veritas Award in recognition of his commitment to the four pillars of Dominican life: prayer, study, community and service. He was lauded for his leadership in the Dominican STREAM initiative and for helping plan the science program and lab layout for the school’s new facility. Foss has been on the faculty for 15 years.

2000s CHRISTINA MIRANDA (NC ’01) married Joshua M. Simon on May 2, 2014, in Miami Beach, Florida. HECTOR LINARES (TC ’00), JAY HAZEN (TC ’05) and EMILY HAZEN (NC ’05) attended and MARGOT CARROLL (NC ’02) was a bridesmaid. The couple lives in Denver, where Miranda is a fair housing specialist for Denver Metro Fair Housing Center. CAROLINA ROGOLL (B ’03) released Star Brands: A Brand Manager’s Guide to Build, Manage & Market Brands (Allworth Press) in June. With her experience as both a brand manager at Procter & Gamble—the world’s largest consumer goods company—and a faculty member at the graduate program in branding at the School of Visual Arts in New York City, Rogoll understands the power of a thoughtful, well-conceived and proactively managed brand. The book provides pragmatic information and structured guidance to build and manage a brand.

MARK A. CUNNINGHAM (L ’92), a partner on the corporate compliance and white-collar defense team in the New Orleans office of Jones Walker, was installed as the 75th president of the Louisiana State Bar Association in June.

KATHRYN SPRUILL ROMAN (NC ’05, B ’07) and her partner, James Roman, welcomed a daughter, Lillian Frances, on Dec. 29, 2013. The baby is named for both grandmothers. Kathryn Roman recently started DenverNaturalMom.com. She is preparing for the launch of a national site and would like to hear from other Tulane parents who are passionate about food, wellness, relationships, self-care, education, activities for kids and tips for the home. She may be reached at kathrynsroman@gmail.com.

Work by JAMIE BUSH (A ’93) was featured in Elle magazine (April 2015) and Architectural Digest

ERIN P. HAMILTON (A ’06) was named architectural design services manager for Prescient,

Dispatch Paulin Basinga located in Denver. Hamilton has been with Prescient since 2012. LAUREN-TORIE “L.T.” NIOSI BRADY (’07) developed a new beauty product, Style Saver, and ran a Kickstarter campaign to fund its manufacturing and distribution. She surpassed her initial goal by 550 percent. For more information, visit http://kck.st/1A8Wm6S. Niosi married Morgan Brady in September 2013 in Sag Harbor, New York. The couple lives in Charlotte, North Carolina.

SYDNEY MORRIS (’07) was a finalist for the Peter Jennings Award for Civic Leadership. The award is granted each year by Teach For America to an alumnus who exemplifies the organization’s core values and whose work has led to significant and measurable systemic change. Morris and her business partner were recognized for their work as co-founders of Educators 4 Excellence, an organization founded in 2010 that organizes and empowers teachers to have a meaningful voice in education policymaking. JON SANTORO (’07, G ’08, M ’13) received The Right Fit H.E.R.O. Honorarium for his “outstanding accomplishments as an emerging leader in pediatric neurology and his passionate advocacy for the population he serves.” Following Katrina, Santoro was exposed to the nation’s shortage of pediatric neurologists and the need for advocacy for patients with complex medical issues. He has lobbied to increase neurologic research funding through Brain Initiative investment resources. Santoro is a pediatric neurology resident at Stanford University. JULIE DABROWSKI (’08) and DAVID BOGORAD (B ’08) married on May 24, 2015, in New Orleans. Dabrowski writes to say: “David and I met as freshmen in Monroe Hall, where we both lived on the third floor (Mo 3, the place to be). The rest is history! We were thrilled to have the wedding in New Orleans, the city where we met and the only place where you can have your own parade.” Dabrowski is an attorney at the Department of Labor and Bogorad just started his second year at Harvard Business School. MADELINE GARVY BRADY (PHTM ’09, ’10) and JAMES AROGETI (B ’09, ’10) married on May 24, 2015, in Chicago. The wedding party included ANNE DIEBOLD (’10) and DANIEL MOSKOWITZ (B ’09, ’10). Many other Tulane alumni joined in the celebration. The couple lives in Chicago,

Cindy Chew, University of California–san franCisCo

MICHAEL W. “MIKE” KEARNEY (’07) received the 2015 C. Alvin Bertel Award in June on behalf of 11 international trade, transportation and economic development organizations in New Orleans. The award recognizes Kearney for his contributions to the Louisiana port community for more than 40 years. He is chair and CEO of The Kearney Companies, a New Orleans–based third-party logistics company that serves the supply chain needs of importers and exporters. Kearney is active in a number of industry and community associations.

INTERNATIONAL HEALTH It was a colleague he met in Kigali, Rwanda, that led Dr. Paulin Basinga to pack up and head nearly 9,000 miles across the world to Seattle. Through the Payson Center for International Development at Tulane, Basinga earned a Master of Science in 2006 and a PhD in international health development from the Law School in 2009. After he received his doctorate, Basinga worked as a researcher and teacher at the National University of Rwanda School of Public Health, where he met researchers from around the globe. One of these influential people was Dr. Stefano Bertozzi, director of the National Institute of Public Health in Mexico. They worked closely together on a number of research projects, including a World Bank–funded evaluation of a performance-based financing program in Rwanda. After Bertozzi was named HIV director for the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation’s Global Health Program in Seattle, he recruited Basinga in 2012 to work on issues related to efficacy and efficiency of HIV programs. And that is how Basinga—a Rwandan citizen who grew up in the Democratic Republic of the Congo—relocated to Seattle. Nowadays, Basinga serves as a senior program officer for integrated delivery for the foundation. He is responsible for both managing and strategically developing a portfolio of grants, such as those for family planning and achieving the goal of reducing childhood deaths from pneumonia. He often travels to Geneva, Rwanda, Ethiopia, Senegal, Burkina Faso, Nigeria and Tanzania. “Being based in Seattle and working in Africa is sometimes challenging. But the foundation is doing a lot to mitigate this challenge (like opening countries’ offices, hiring consultants in countries where we do not have a presence, etc.).” Being on staff at the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation is of special significance to him. “(I enjoy) being part of a team that is translating the mission of the foundation co-chairs into actions,” he says.—ANDREW CLARK

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Dispatch Joe McMenemon & Brendan Finke

where Brady is a project coordinator at a nonprofit organization, and Arogeti is an analyst at a business valuation firm. HENRY CLAY DUQUESNAY (B ’09) and SAM SKYDELL (B ’09) work for Earth Prime, a New Orleans–based enterprise that recently received a Green Games award for sustainability achievement in building, energy and environmental services from LifeCity. Earth Prime is developing iGardenX, a new, simple-to-use vertical hydroponics solution to encourage easy gardening at homes, businesses and schools. ADAM GULOTTA (B ’09) has joined Adams and Reese as a staff attorney in the firm’s New Orleans office. He was previously a medical malpractice attorney at Judice & Adley in Lafayette, Louisiana. Gulotta earned his JD from Paul M. Hebert Law Center at Louisiana State University.


2010s LUC SOLEAU (B ’11), CEO of Tuleu Consulting Co., announces that the company received the Presidential “E” Award, created by executive order of the president, to recognize significant efforts to increase the country’s exports. The Louisiana-based distributor of John Deere agricultural machinery, together with the help of the U.S. Department of Commerce’s Advocacy Center, recently signed a contract with the government of Chad for 500 John Deere tractors and 750 implements. This contract will support Chad’s efforts to become self-sufficient in food production.

AN INNOVATIVE SPOT Joe McMenemon (B ’08) (left) and Brendan Finke (’10) are not native New Orleanians. They could have chosen anywhere in the United States for their startup business. But the entrepreneurs like the spirit of innovation that has emerged in the Crescent City in the 10 years since Hurricane Katrina. “Welcome to the national headquarters of ChapterSpot,” says McMenemon, who earned a degree in finance and accounting, as he shows off the company’s office on the sixth floor of a high-rise office building on Poydras Street. The space overlooks the Mercedes-Benz Superdome in downtown New Orleans. McMenemon and Finke developed the online portal called ChapterSpot to improve communication for member-based organizations such as fraternities, sororities and other large organizations. Their service helps these groups develop and customize private social networks using group communications and database management tools that support communication between members, facilitate member dues collections and organize member data. After he graduated from Tulane, McMenemon (a Westchester County, New York, native) worked at Morgan Stanley in New York. But when the financial crisis hit, he lost his job. He and Finke continued to stay in touch, bouncing ideas back and forth. “We both wanted to solve a market problem, and this was the idea that emerged,” says Finke, a native of Eagan, Minnesota. “The part of the story that’s most interesting is the execution, not the idea.” As Finke and McMenemon hatched their company’s concept, they found people and institutions in New Orleans eager to help them succeed. Many were Tulane alumni, faculty and students. ChapterSpot has participated in the incubator program of the Idea Village, whose mission is to identify, support and retain entrepreneurial talent in New Orleans, and the Goldman Sachs 10,000 Small Businesses Program. Since the startup’s launch in 2010, over 6,000 organizations in the United States, Canada and England with hundreds of thousands of members have used the ChapterSpot database management system and web applet tools. —FrAN SIMON



ANDREW BROOKS (B ’12) and KEELY WILLIAMS (A ’08, ’09) started Ley Line Development. The New Orleans–based company is rehabilitating a derelict, historic Creole townhouse in the city’s Central Business District into a 35-room boutique hotel and bar. The company is involved in all phases of the project, from inception and acquisition to design and development. Construction is approximately 50 percent complete, and the hotel is scheduled to open early next year. JONATHAN BERMAN (’13) won a Fulbright grant for his “Investigation of Autism Spectrum Disorder Prevalence and Services in Argentina.” DAVID DUESING (’13) received a Fulbright English Teaching Assistant placement in Madrid, Spain, from September 2015 through June 2016. Duesing served as a Peace Corps youth development volunteer in rural Costa Rica. After completing his work in Madrid, Duesing will pursue a master’s degree in public policy at Harvard University’s Kennedy School of Government. STACY KROST (’13), who spent her third year at Tulane studying in Beijing, spent the summer following graduation working for the Department of State in Washington, D.C. Krost was selected for an internship this past summer with the Department of State in Taipei, Taiwan. She is pursuing her master’s degree in East Asian studies at Stanford University.

F A R E W E L L Harwood I. Brown (E ’37, B ’48) of Metairie, Louisiana, on May 20, 2015.

Thomas E. Strain Jr. (M ’47) of Shreveport, Louisiana, on May 11, 2015.

Harry L. Engelhardt (E ’51) of Angleton, Texas, on April 9, 2015.

Sophie Welsch Teks (NC ’37) of Bonita Springs, Florida, on May 8, 2015.

Charles R. Wieselthier (B ’47) of Bloomington, Indiana, on April 10, 2015.

Nick C. Nichols (A&S ’51, M ’58) of Mobile, Alabama, on April 10, 2015.

Emily Wilson Wolfson (NC ’37) of Murray, Kentucky, on June 18, 2015.

Joy Harper Marshall (NC ’48) of Monroe, Louisiana, on April 26, 2015.

Norbert E. Schmidt (E ’51) of New Orleans on April 3, 2015.

Adele Heaton Tobin (NC ’38) of New Orleans on May 2, 2015.

Charles E. McHale Jr. (A&S ’48) of New Orleans on May 18, 2015.

James A. Sinclair (A&S ’51) of Brookhaven, Mississippi, on Feb. 20, 2015.

Marian Garsia Glenn (NC ’39) of Alexandria, Virginia, on Jan. 12, 2015.

Alice Taylor McLeod (SW ’48) of Atlantic Beach, North Carolina, on June 6, 2015.

Clarence L. Smith Jr. (G ’51) of Fort Collins, Colorado, on Feb. 10, 2015.

Thais Morris Fisher (NC ’40, SW ’43) of Silver Spring, Maryland, on Nov. 23, 2014.

Harold B. Patterson (A&S ’48, B ’50) of New Orleans on April 21, 2015.

Frederick H. West (A&S ’51) of Manchester, Vermont, on May 26, 2015.

Louise Ireland-Frey (M ’40) of Durango, Colorado, on Nov. 29, 2014.

Edward H. Saer Jr. (L ’48) of Covington, Louisiana, on June 16, 2015.

Phillip H. Bookman (A&S ’52, M ’55) of Boca Raton, Florida, on May 7, 2015.

Catherine Burkhart Healey (SW ’41) of Metairie, Louisiana, on June 2, 2015.

Albrecht B. Strauss (G ’48) of Chapel Hill, North Carolina, on May 7, 2015.

Donald E. Carson (B ’52) of Annandale, Virginia, on Jan. 5, 2015.

Ralph R. Rugan Jr. (B ’41) of Gulf Shores, Alabama, on Jan. 18, 2015.

Shelby C. Trice (B ’48) of Mobile, Alabama, on April 14, 2015.

Ernest P. Jacomine Jr. (B ’52) of New Orleans on May 1, 2015.

Ruby Pritchett Brewster (SW ’42) of New Orleans on May 12, 2015.

Moise H. Goldstein Jr. (E ’49) of Providence, Rhode Island, on April 9, 2015.

Joseph L. Meitin (A&S ’52) of Augusta, Georgia, on April 28, 2015.

Louise Trimble Kepper (NC ’42) of New Orleans on April 14, 2015.

Joan Clymer Grattan (NC ’49) of Chula Vista, California, on May 17, 2015.

Joe Netick Jr. (A&S ’52, M ’55) of Charles City, Virginia, on May 8, 2015.

Sam A. Threefoot (A&S ’43, M ’45) of New Orleans on April 25, 2015.

J.H. Lawrence (B ’49) of Stone Mountain, Georgia, on Feb. 4, 2014.

Joseph I. Ross (A&S ’52) of New Orleans on June 24, 2015.

Mabel Hochenedel Allen (NC ’44) of Louisburg, North Carolina, on April 29, 2015.

Philip Mansour Sr. (L ’49) of Austin, Texas, on June 23, 2015.

Eleanor Francisco Straub (NC ’52) of Lafayette, Louisiana, on May 6, 2015.

Robert J. Fritz Sr. (E ’44) of Rexford, New York, on June 14, 2015.

Patrick E. McCauley (A&S ’49) of Huntsville, Alabama, on April 12, 2015.

Julia Fowler Welsh (NC ’52) of Kerrville, Texas, on April 12, 2015.

John L. McCarthy (A&S ’44) of New Orleans on March 25, 2015.

William B. Allison Jr. (A&S ’50) of Madison, Mississippi, on June 9, 2014.

Sterling Peebles Allen-Daubner (NC ’54) of Maitland, Florida, on April 20, 2015.

Frances Henson Ballard (NC ’45) of Newtown, Connecticut, on April 19, 2015.

Gretchen Hanemann (NC ’50) of New Orleans on June 1, 2015.

Harold H. Audet (PHTM ’54) of Cary, North Carolina, on April 20, 2015.

Joseph K. Perloff (A&S ’45) of Pacific Palisades, California, on Aug. 17, 2014.

Peter C. Piccione Sr. (L ’50) of New Orleans on April 12, 2015.

William M. Brantley (M ’54) of Fairhope, Alabama, on May 31, 2015.

Rosemary Haas Williams (NC ’45) of Baton Rouge, Louisiana, on May 14, 2015.

Francis M. Poche (E ’50) of Kenner, Louisiana, on May 4, 2015.

Melvin Goldstein (A&S ’54, G ’57) of Dallas on April 5, 2015.

Lee R. Ballage (B ’46) of Clarksville, Indiana, on May 2, 2015.

Jack Sherman (A&S ’50, M ’53) of Huntington, New York, on May 5, 2015.

Curtis L. Clapham (SW ’55) of Wilmington, Delaware, on April 13, 2015.

Kenneth C. Warren (A&S ’46) of Haverford, Pennsylvania, on April 22, 2015.

Robert E. Craig III (E ’51) of New Orleans on May 12, 2015.

Elwood J. Gonzales (G ’55, G ’58) of Gretna, Louisiana, on Feb. 23, 2015.

Bonnie Bourg (NC ’47) of Thibodaux, Louisiana, on April 17, 2015.

Mary Prinz Dennard (SW ’51) of New Orleans on April 8, 2015.

L. R. Howell (B ’55) of Biloxi, Mississippi, on May 15, 2015.

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FOOTBALL STAR JaJuan Dawson (B ’99) died in Dallas on July 12, 2015. A Green Wave record-breaking wide receiver, Dawson was a member of the 1998 undefeated Tulane football team. Following his career at Tulane, Dawson played three seasons in the NFL with the Cleveland Browns and Houston Texans. He was inducted into the Tulane Athletics Hall of Fame in 2008.

F A R E W E L L Barry H. Shafer (A&S ’55) of Sacramento, California, on March 21, 2015.

Edwin D. Odom (G ’61) of Denton, Texas, on May 26, 2015.

James C. Hinson Jr. (UC ’68) of Pensacola, Florida, on April 6, 2015.

Jacob G. Wagner (E ’55) of St. Louis on April 1, 2015.

Jack C. Peebles (L ’61) of Metairie, Louisiana, on May 13, 2015.

Beverly Leachman Mann (G ’68) of Pensacola, Florida, on May 2, 2015.

William E. Falbaum (B ’56) of Shreveport, Louisiana, on March 26, 2015.

Mary Renner (SW ’61) of Louisville, Kentucky, on May 13, 2015.

John D. Scanlon (G ’68) of Pittsburgh on May 11, 2015.

Carol C. deValcourt (UC ’57) of Dickinson, Texas, on April 1, 2015.

Meredith W. Berg (G ’62, G ’66) of Valparaiso, Indiana, on June 1, 2015.

James D. Watral (G ’68) of Commerce, Texas, on Oct. 5, 2014.

Larry E. Brightwell (M ’62) of Columbus, Georgia, on April 9, 2015.

Bobby B. Bright Sr. (UC ’69) of Medon, Tennessee, on June 17, 2015.

Gina Beem Watson (NC ’62) of Atlanta on May 23, 2015.

Albert G. Franklin (E ’69) of Edgewater, Florida, on June 12, 2015.

Elizabeth Weaver (NC ’62, L ’65) of Glen Arbor, Michigan, on April 21, 2015.

Mary Johnson-Delivorias (G ’69) of Starkville, Mississippi, on April 12, 2015.

Frederic J. Delamain (G ’63) of Williamsburg, Virginia, on April 2, 2015.

Floyd D. Thompson (B ’69) of Blanchard, Oklahoma, on April 28, 2015.

Suzanne Seaman Jackson (NC ’57) of The Hills, Texas, on June 2, 2015. Dono W. Moore (UC ’57) of Hendersonville, Tennessee, on Sept. 26, 2014. Linton Morgan (A&S ’57, L ’65) of Folsom, Louisiana, on May 29, 2015. Barbara Schechtman Rambach (NC ’57) of Tulsa, Oklahoma, on March 23, 2015. Robert E. Williams III (B ’57) of Point Clear, Alabama, on July 19, 2014. Mildred Redd Engledove (SW ’58) of Henrico, Virginia, on April 20, 2015. Perry W. Gard III (A&S ’58) of Peachtree City, Georgia, on May 24, 2014. Beverly Moore Lore (NC ’58) of Metairie, Louisiana, on June 23, 2015. Ellen Baker Scarbrough (NC ’58, L ’61) of Sarasota, Florida, on March 19, 2015. Dean E. Webster (B ’58) of Corpus Christi, Texas, on May 10, 2015. Garic K. Barranger (L ’59) of Covington, Louisiana, on April 15, 2015. Marguerite Burt (PHTM ’59) of Wynne, Arkansas, on Dec. 1, 2014. Louis A. Fuselier (L ’59) of Jackson, Mississippi, on May 5, 2015.

Harold C. Felger (UC ’63) of New Orleans on June 24, 2015. Brenda Brown Hatton (NC ’63) of Alexandria, Virginia, on June 15, 2015. George P. Robbins III (E ’63) of New Orleans on April 7, 2015. James E. Scott III (E ’63) of Concord, California, on May 5, 2015. Judith Hodes Watts (NC ’63) of New Orleans on April 7, 2015. Kenneth A. Beem (A&S ’64, G ’67) of Baltimore, Maryland, on June 3, 2015. Stephen J. Hornyak (L ’64) of Gretna, Louisiana, on April 28, 2015. John E. Miertschin (UC ’65) of Mobile, Alabama, on April 2, 2014. Robert H. Wood Jr. (A&S ’65, L ’72) of Metairie, Louisiana, on March 1, 2015. Faye Angel Geronemus (NC ’66) of Plantation, Florida, on April 6, 2015.

Sarah Knott Alderette (SW ’70) of Malibu, California, on June 6, 2015. Geneva Golden Banks (SW ’70) of Dallas on Feb. 28, 2015. Francis C. George (G ’70) of Chicago on April 17, 2015. Barbara Rosten Scanio (NC ’70) of Houston on May 2, 2015. David L. Jefferson (UC ’72) of Gulfport, Mississippi, on May 4, 2015. Simon W. Oderberg (L ’72) of Fort Worth, Texas, on April 10, 2015. James M. Acklin III (G ’73) of Adamstown, Maryland, on March 26, 2015. Thomas Assad (A&S ’73, G ’74) of East Greenwich, Rhode Island, is alive and well. He writes, “The reports of my death have been greatly exaggerated.” Vincent R. Danna Sr. (UC ’73) of Metairie, Louisiana, on June 11, 2015. Robert S. Baxter (M ’74) of New Orleans on May 11, 2015.

Marguerite Ferrier Smith (NC ’59) of Mandeville, Louisiana, on May 28, 2015.

Harry V. Hagstad (PHTM ’66) of Baton Rouge, Louisiana, on April 1, 2015.

Robert N. Mateer (B ’60) of Lynchburg, Virginia, on April 6, 2015.

Thomas F. Gerrets Sr. (E ’67) of Madison, Mississippi, on June 16, 2015.

David E. Draper (G ’74) of New Orleans on June 3, 2015.

G.A. Robison (G ’60, G ’63) of Houston on May 25, 2015.

Albert D. Harrison (SW ’67) of Baton Rouge, Louisiana, on June 4, 2015.

Guy M. Huard (L ’74) of Mandeville, Louisiana, on May 30, 2015.

Donald G. Becnel (E ’61) of New Orleans on June 8, 2015.

Thomas R. Calhoun (M ’68) of Spring, Texas, on April 10, 2015.

Helene Blitzer Olson (UC ’74) of San Mateo, California, on April 29, 2015.



Tribute Tim Favrot William L. Tucker II (A&S ’74) of Naples, Florida, on April 7, 2015. Fred J. Sandefer Jr. (A&S ’75) of Germantown, Tennessee, on March 20, 2014. Wayne Smith (SW ’75) of Valdosta, Georgia, on June 11, 2015. Thomas G. O’Brien (A&S ’76, L ’79) of Kenner, Louisiana, on June 4, 2015. James G. Richeson Jr. (A&S ’76) of Chevy Chase, Maryland, on May 30, 2015.

Leo E. Jones (A&S ’78) of New Orleans on March 28, 2015. Elizabeth Williams Kohlmann (NC ’78, B ’80) of Aurora, Colorado, on May 23, 2015. Joseph B. Rusinko (E ’78, M ’83) of University Place, Washington, on April 9, 2015. Corine Marek (UC ’79) of Lake Charles, Louisiana, on June 11, 2015. Ronald K. Gee (E ’80, L ’83) of Metairie, Louisiana, on April 4, 2015. Martha Walters (L ’80) of Hattiesburg, Mississippi, on April 18, 2015. Flora Barreto Pfeifer (G ’81) of Lakeland, Florida, on April 17, 2015. George G. Young III (L ’81) of Spring, Texas, on April 19, 2015.


Joseph A. Holton (SW ’77) of New Orleans on May 14, 2015.

ElEgant architEct henri Mortimer “tim” Favrot Jr. (A ’53) died in New Orleans on May 10, 2015. Tim came from a family line of important New Orleans architects, extending back several generations. I remember him telling me that his grandfather’s firm, Favrot and Livaudais, had designed the Hibernia Bank Building—the tallest building in the city for many years—with its elegant Greek temple top. With his customary modesty, Tim also mentioned that one of his own earliest design projects was the Bruff Commons on the uptown campus, with its elevated fine, airy, modernist dining room. In practice, he became a successful developer of garden apartments in the environs surrounding the city. For over a decade beginning in the early 1990s, Tim chaired the Tulane Campus Planning Steering Committee. This group consisted of members of the Board of Administrators, senior university administrators, faculty, staff and students. Tim was an extraordinarily effective chair. He was able to elicit comments from the highly diverse perspectives of this rather unwieldy group, then call for a vote when necessary … and move things along! I never ceased to be in awe of this ability, and his skill as a leader resulted in some of the most successful projects on the uptown campus in recent times, including the Israel Environmental Sciences Building and the Willow Residences. Tim was an ardent supporter of architecture at Tulane, both through the Campus Planning Committee and his unwavering interest and beneficence to the School of Architecture. I also always enjoyed hearing Tim recount his travel adventures. At first a surprise, I eventually learned that he had been everywhere (!), in corners of the world that were far from the common tour circuits. I have found this to be personally inspiring and have endeavored to emulate Tim’s spirit in my own ventures abroad in recent years. Tim Favrot, a true Southern gentleman, was an exemplary person in many ways, and it was a great pleasure to have known him.—John P. KlingMan Klingman is Favrot Professor of Architecture at Tulane School of Architecture.

James A. Brocato (A ’84, A&S ’84) of Alexandria, Louisiana, on April 18, 2015.

Andrew D. James (A&S ’86) of Kenilworth, Illinois, on April 9, 2015.

Ira B. Lukens (L ’92) of Providence, Rhode Island, on March 18, 2015.

Glenn T. Costello (E ’84) of Ramsey, New Jersey, on April 4, 2015.

Paul H. Kirsch (E ’86) of Metairie, Louisiana, on June 5, 2015.

Helen Betah (PHTM ’95) of Gaithersburg, Maryland, on April 29, 2015.

Wendy Balleisen Finger (NC ’84) of Lake Bluff, Illinois, on May 12, 2015.

William H. Gordon III (A&S ’90) of New York on May 6, 2015.

Danial E. Ruhl (E ’95) of Madison, Mississippi, on April 19, 2015.

Peter G. Flagg II (B ’84) of San Marcos, California, on March 29, 2015.

Jane Hundley Hebert (NC ’90) of Houston on April 18, 2015.

William J. Salvaggio (UC ’96, L ’00) of Metairie, Louisiana, on March 20, 2015.

Craig A. Hanson (A&S ’84, G ’86, ’08) of Ipswich, Massachusetts, on April 20, 2015.

Sharyn McKeithen Orr (G ’90) of Kenner, Louisiana, on May 4, 2015.

Robert J. Phelan (L ’97) of Greenwich, New York, on Nov. 1, 2014.

Hsien-Ming Liu (E ’84) of Salt Lake City on June 16, 2015.

Joseph B. Rink III (UC ’90) of New Orleans on June 6, 2015.

Nicholas M. Newsome (B ’14) of Big Bear City, California, on April 23, 2015.

Kathleen Hennessey (UC ’86, L ’88) of Birmingham, Alabama, on May 17, 2015.

Russell W. Beverly (A ’92) of West Hartford, Connecticut, on May 9, 2015.

Christopher A. Traver (CS ’14) of Gulfport, Mississippi, on May 9, 2015.

T UL A N E MAGA Z I N E S E P T E M B E R 20 1 5


DID YOU KNOW? Nearly 75 percent of Tulane students receive some form of financial aid. And contributing to the Tulane Fund helps bring a world-class education within reach for many talented students.

Dead Zones In Challenge Gratitude To commemorate the 10th anniversary of Hurricane Katrina, designer Mignon Faget (NC ’55) is observing the occasion as only she can—with a new line of jewelry. “The collection is called ‘In Gratitude,’” says Faget, president and designer of Mignon Faget Ltd. “It’s based on a Tibetan symbol, and we use this to say ‘thank you’ to all of the people who have helped New Orleans come back in a stronger way.” To show her support for Tulane, Faget is donating 10 percent of all the sales of the In Gratitude line to the Newcomb Art Museum and the Tulane-Xavier Center for Bioenvironmental Research. Faget says the transformation she’s seen in New Orleans over the past decade has been remarkable, and she feels that Tulane has played an integral role in that renaissance. “If good can come from bad, that’s what we have here in New Orleans,” Faget says. More information about the In Gratitude line and the inspiration behind it can found at mignonfaget.com.—Ryan Rivet



Tulane has announced the next phase of an international competition that will award $1 million to the entrepreneur, researcher or inventor with the best plan to reduce the amount of crop fertilizer entering the world’s lakes and oceans through storm water runoff. Such runoff from the nation’s farmlands is the primary cause of hypoxia, oxygen-deprived water that causes massive fish kills and annual “dead zones” in waters throughout the world. The contest—Tulane University Nitrogen Reduction Challenge—is funded by Phyllis Taylor, who is president of the Patrick F. Taylor Foundation and a member of the Board of Tulane. The $1 million prize was first announced in February 2014 with a call for letters of interest from potential participants. Nearly 100 such responses were received. These individuals and others with nitrogen-reducing ideas should register for the Challenge at https://challenge.tulane.edu no later than Sept. 15, and submit a one-page proposal. Those submitting the most viable one-page proposals will be invited to create a 20-page technical explanation, including descriptions of their team, resources and capacity for implementing their proposal. An advisory committee of 18 scientists, environmentalists, entrepreneurs, farmers and other national experts will select five finalists from these entries. These finalists will test their proposals on farms during the 2016 growing season. “Two finalists will be chosen from this group and one of these will be our ultimate winner,” said Rick Aubry, assistant provost for social entrepreneurship and community engagement and professor of practice at Tulane.—Mike Strecker

Global Problem This world map shows the spread of hypoxia— a deadly deficiency of oxygen in water created by excessive growth of phytoplankton. Often thought of as a challenge particular to the northern Gulf of Mexico, dead zones actually are a problem of global proportions.

map courtesy of World resources institute

image courtesy mignon faget


TULANE ASSOCIATES, BACKBONE OF TULANE FUND Tulane Associates are alumni, parents and friends who invest in the university’s mission by making annual unrestricted leadership gifts of $1,500 or more. These unrestricted gifts are powerful, allowing Tulane leaders the flexibility to meet current and time-sensitive needs such as funding new research, providing student aid and supporting faculty.

W A V E M A K E R S Super Moon Rise

Photo courtesy of Nicole Krawczewicz

At the top of Lion’s Head, a peak just off Table Mountain, in the middle of Cape Town, South Africa, Nicole Krawczewicz watches the sunset before the moon rises from the east in August 2014. Clouds cover the edge of the city and the Atlantic Ocean below.

Scholarships Abroad Amazing opportunities awaited Tulane junior Nicole Krawczewicz during her semester abroad in South Africa last fall. She enjoyed her challenging engineering classes as well as sitting in on a talk by legendary social rights activist Archbishop Desmond Tutu about the intrinsic value of human worth. “I learned so much inside the classroom, but also outside the classroom,” says the engineering physics major. “It was the best semester of my life.” Krawczewicz’s study abroad experience was enhanced by a scholarship established by Dr. Robert I. Grossman (A&S ’69), who majored in biology and is now dean and CEO of NYU Langone Medical Center in New York City. Grossman’s own junior year abroad in London inspired him to give back. “My experience influenced my career and enriched my life,” says Grossman, whose neuroscience courses in England sparked his

interest in the subject and led to a career as a neuroradiologist.

“Understanding other cultures is very important to understanding our own culture.” —Toby Darden, A&S ’75 Toby Darden (A&S ’75) majored in economics. He has established the Darden Study Abroad Scholarship. “I think global travel is a vital part of living

in this world today,” says Darden, the founder of Darden Energy Group, headquartered in Fort Worth, Texas. “Understanding other cultures is very important to understanding our own culture.” Darden’s award allowed junior Timothy DeCotis, a political science and French major, to travel throughout Morocco. “Interestingly enough,” says DeCotis, “studying abroad has taught me a lot about the United States.” Krawczewicz and DeCotis are among 32 students who received donor-funded study abroad grants in 2014–15, according to Joanie Vicknair, assistant director of study abroad. The Office of Study Abroad—housed in Newcomb-Tulane College—awards both the Darden and Grossman scholarships to multiple students every year. These grants and other donor-funded study abroad scholarships have enriched numerous intellectual and cultural experiences.—Mary Sparacello

T U L A N E MAGA Z I N E S E P T E M B E R 2 0 1 5


ANGUS LIND A 1966 graduate of Tulane, Angus Lind spent more than three decades as a columnist for The Times-Picayune.


mark andresen


The Great Flood by Angus Lind In the immediate aftermath of the Hurricane Katrina flooding that devastated Greater New Orleans and silenced many normal communication lines, reporters and columnists for The Times-Picayune (for which I worked for 39 years) were asked via email to check in, if possible. This is pretty much how my reply went in early September 2005: “We are in rural Avoyelles Parish in Big Bend, La., which you could say is a ‘suburb’ of Bordelonville on the Bayou des Glaises Loop. I never thought this Uptown button-down frat kid would have a roadside mailbox on La. Hwy. 451 in Moreauville, La. (Bordelonville does not have a post office.) This is farm country. This is John Deere’s world, lots of cotton and soybeans. The mooing of cows, the crowing of roosters, the singing of birds wakes you up in the morning and crickets and frogs and sounds of other critters put you to bed at night. You can see stars like you never can in the city. “We are in a rambling old farmhouse that belonged to the mom of one of my lifelong friends, attorney William Marshall, a classmate and Beta Theta Pi fraternity brother of mine who graduated with me from Tulane in 1966, got a TU law degree in ’70 and now lives in Folsom, La. “The farmhouse has not been regularly occupied since 1993, when Mrs. Marshall died. Miraculously, all four window AC units work. Cell phones don’t, however, so we got two landlines put in. Yesterday I—at best a bungling handyman—somehow installed a washing machine. We hang clothes on a clothesline. The nearest Walmart is 26 miles away in Marksville. We are going to buy overalls and pitchforks to get that Grant Wood American Gothic look and be able to interact with the rather large cow and hog population. “The first night here, as we were going to sleep, a skunk crawled under the house and sprayed, a lovely bedtime aroma. We have a fridge that works and a great neighbor who can fix anything we can’t. Hot water runs on butane, we have a cistern and a septic tank.” A decade ago, so began an evacuation adventure in a house where my wife and I slept in a four-poster bed that survived the Great Flood of 1927, near where the levee broke 88 years ago. The bed survived; the house did not and was rebuilt in 1930. As I put my head down that night—after a circuitous 293 miles and 12 grueling hours on back roads, exhaustion conquering the essence of skunk—I quietly said a prayer for everyone who was dealing with the aftermath of Katrina, with the loss of relatives and


S e p t e m b e r 2015 T ULANE MAGA ZINE

NEVER FORGOTTEN Like Katrina, the 1927 Louisiana flood left a lasting impression on folks in the region.

friends and the uncertainty of what lay ahead. I thanked God for sparing my family and then I gave thanks for my new home, not knowing I would be there until Oct. 8. I’ve always believed that humor and laughter temper the worst blows life can deliver. It may take some time to get to where it works, but it will work—even in a watershed moment that forever changed a city and the lives of its citizens. I began to file stories from my new home in between setting mousetraps and battling hornets and wasps. I relaxed, deciding to just play the hand I was dealt. At the Harvest Fresh supermarket in Marksville, I ran into an employee named Carl who spotted me as an evacuee and walked me around the unfamiliar store. I told Carl, who came from a tiny Louisiana community, that I’d lost track of time more than I ever had in my life. Carl laughed. And then he passed on some great country wisdom that was passed on to him: “Time don’t mean nuthin’ to a hog,” he said. I really laughed, for the first time in quite a while and made a note to come back and talk to philosopher Carl some more, which I did. As a city boy I never could understand why anyone would want to live in a small town. But I figured it out: The pace is slow, concern for your fellow man is high, and people aren’t uptight like city dwellers. There is no rat race, no road rage, no gridlock, no traffic jams, no traffic report. Heck, there’s no traffic. People lend a hand in an instant. They always have time for you. It’s in their DNA. Nobody is rude or in a hurry. Everybody says hello or waves. Down the road from us lived 91-year-old Bernadine “Bird” Laborde. The matriarch of the Laborde family survived the Great Flood of 1927 that wiped out lives, livestock, homes, railroads, steamboats and everything in sight—inspiring Randy Newman decades later to record “Louisiana 1927.” When she saw what New Orleans looked like on TV, the images of the 1927 devastation came back. “The railroad track looked like a corkscrew,” she said. “You could only see rooftops ... like in New Orleans.” Many descendants of French families migrated to this area from New Orleans through the years, creating countless connections to the Crescent City. “The ’27 flood has never been forgotten,” said Bird Laborde. “It is still talked about here—just like New Orleans will be doing with Katrina for years. Mark my words.”

TUlane M A G A Z I N E

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Wish you were here. ‘Overcoming,’ football game in Lafayette, Louisiana, Oct. 8, 2005.

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