Tulane Magazine March 2018

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A campaign for the history books


Research is the reason for Tulane’s being



TUlane Teaching transforms

Commitment to diversity

The Commons


MARCH 2018

Only the audacious can make


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FEELING TULANE The student a cappella group Green Envy performs at The Big Reveal, the launch of the campaign. The solo featured singer (front, center) is Adriana Amador. (Read more about Amador in “Ahead of the Class,” on p. 16)

Celebration Back cover: Hankiewaving second-liners join in Big Reveal festivities. (Photo by Cheryl Gerber)

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P R E S I D E N T ’ S


The Tipping Point


by Mike Fitts

For 184 years, Tulane has been a beacon to the bold, a siren’s call to trailblazers and pioneers. Ours is an audacious spirit, passed on from our founders to generation after generation of Tulane graduates. Today, Tulane has never been more ambitious. From research that changes the world, to service that utterly transforms our community, Tulane has never mattered more than we do right now. But we’ve reached this moment in time against incredible odds. We’ve thrived, but always with fewer resources than some of our peer institutions—instead, fueled by the unlimited creativity, passion and hard work of every Tulanian. But recently, Tulane reached its tipping point. We began working to take Tulane to the next level. And we began building the Tulane of tomorrow. In December, we launched “Only the Audacious, The campaign for an ever bolder Tulane.” The campaign is the most ambitious fundraising endeavor in university history, with a goal of raising $1.3 billion. This is the destiny we must achieve: not just to recapture the spirit of what makes us “us”—but to double down, ignite our passions and usher in a new era of world-changing research. I imagine a Tulane where our students have unfettered academic freedom and unlimited potential to explore. I imagine a Tulane where we don’t just seek to provide a 21st-century education—but a Tulane where we’ve already started to prepare for the 22nd.


CAMPAIGN CASE Tulane President Mike Fitts makes the argument for the bold fundraising campaign at its public launch on Dec. 8, 2017, in Avron B. Fogelman Arena in Devlin Fieldhouse.

In the past three years, we’ve watched our U.S. News ranking shoot up 14 points— the largest increase of any university in the top 100. And we’ve watched our admissions numbers rise year after year—this past cycle, Tulane received over 35,000 applications—the most submitted applications in Tulane’s history. As a result, our newest first-year class is the most competitive and diverse in Tulane’s history. To give you a sense of their qualifications: Their average SAT score is 1449, which is a 48-point increase over the last three years. I’ve spent my entire life working in different universities. But Tulane is a different breed altogether. What I love about Tulane is its collective heart … and passion … and resilience … and courage … and ambition. Most of all, I love how Tulane is unbound by some of the limiting academic ideas of the past. As a result, Tulane has become a vital hub of collaboration and innovation. We break barriers and cross boundaries. Tulane has always stood at this intersection of innovation and practical research. Last year, we opened the ByWater Institute on the banks of the Mississippi River, where our students and researchers are tackling vital questions like energy production, climate change and coastal erosion. At the Brain Institute, Tulanians are exploring the mysteries of the brain, joining forces from across diverse fields like physics, neurology and public health. Students in Makerspace have access to cutting-edge creative technology like 3-D printers, laser engravers and design software— learning hands-on with the tools of the future. The campaign is about turning these three examples into 3,000. We can make this dream a reality. If we want to take Tulane to the next level, we’re going to need more support now than we’ve ever had before. Look how far we’ve come in just the last three years. Think of what we can do in the next 30.

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TUlane C O N T E N T S

The Big Reveal Tulane provost Robin Forman (right) quizzes students Shahamat Uddin, Mei Wang and Hunter Williams during a game at the campaign launch. (Read more about Uddin in “Ahead of the Class,” on p. 16.)


2 PRESIDENT’S LETTER Tomorrow’s Tulane


This Is Big Tulane has launched its most ambitious fundraising campaign in the university’s 184year history. “Only the Audacious, The campaign for an ever bolder Tulane” kicked off in December with a $1.3 billion goal. By Mike Strecker


Raison d’Être

6 NEWS Goldring/Woldenberg Business expansion • Climate survey on sexual misconduct • Campaign by the numbers • Adaora Okoli • Nitrogen Challenge winner • Males’ impulse control • Tricentennial book • Pelican study 12 SPORTS Baseball’s Grant Witherspoon • Bowling team

Tulane is one of the nation’s leading research universities—and has been for more than a century. Research here isn’t just the province of graduate students and faculty. Undergraduate research plays a vital role as well. With investment from campaign donors, Tulane will continue on the leading edge of discovery. By Mary Ann Travis


Ahead of the Class Three Tulane professors and their students exemplify how dedicated teachers change the way


28 TULANIANS Trent Stockton • Ever Green • Dr. Barbara Weis • Sandy Heller • Max Hazan • Alumni awards

students understand and act in the world—and vice versa. This alchemy is the essence of the university and requires continual reinvestment and reinvention. By Mary Ann Travis

29 WHERE Y'AT! Class notes

Stronger & Smarter

35 FAREWELL Tribute: Robert Boh

Better opportunities are on tap for minority and first-generation students at Tulane, thanks to initiatives like the Center for Academic Equity and the university’s commitment to awarding more scholarship aid. By Alicia Jasmin


Olive & Blueprint The Commons—including a spacious communal dining hall, multipurpose meeting spaces and a unified home for the many components of the Newcomb College Institute—is under construction in the heart of the uptown campus. By Mary Cross, SLA ’10

36 WAVEMAKERS Campaign launch • Co-chairs Hunter and Cathy Pierson, Richard Yulman, and Phyllis Taylor 40 NEW ORLEANS Vernal thoughts

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MEDICINE & THE CITY History of the Tulane School of Medicine


COMMUNITY & CONNECTIONS Jews contribute to culture of New Orleans

NEW ORLEANS LITERATURE Thomas Beller explores influential writers

TUlane MORE NEW ORLEANS LITERATURE Mary Kay Kemble (SW ’71) of Mitchell,



Georgia, says, “Thank you for an excellent publication.” She also suggests other works for Thomas Beller [“New Orleans Literature,” Tulane, December 2017] to consider: Say Cap! by Ronnie Virgets and Frenchmen, Desire, Good Children … and Other Streets of New Orleans by John Churchill Chase.

Y E A H,



Tulane Celebrates NOLA’s 300th Birthday 11/1/17 12:06 PM


‘THE MOVIEGOER’ DESERVES A READ The table of contents of the December [2017] issue announces that Thomas Beller “examines writers who have helped him understand the contemporary city.” If only. Instead, he uses his space to talk about one book about post-Katrina New Orleans, then swings to making cranky comments about how Walker Percy doesn’t deserve his attention because he should not have been granted the National Book Award! The Moviegoer may be pre-Katrina, but its accuracy about manners from Gentilly to the Garden District is impeccable, and those manners are still prevalent. It is also one


of the few novels of ideas in American Literature, and serves as one of the best introductions to Existentialism of which I am aware, particularly the work of Husserl and Kierkegaard. But you don’t need to know beans about philosophy to enjoy one of the funniest novels ever written. All of which is to say that, Professor Beller, if you want to understand New Orleans, please get off your high horse and read Dr. Percy’s book. And you might also take a look at Dixie City Jam by James Lee Burke. Dan Hise, G ’73 Jackson, Mississippi MORE PRAISE FOR WALKER PERCY Some time ago, in the mid 1960s, I finished reading Walker Percy’s The Moviegoer and his second novel The Last Gentleman. They were absolutely wonderful. In a fit of fired-up enthusiasm I sent a very short note to him, saying I had just read the two books and thought he was the greatest writer in America. Walker Percy wrote me back, simply saying … “and you are the greatest critic in America.” I still have that note inside an autographed copy of The Moviegoer. Percy’s wonderful ability to observe, his wit, his unique gift to tease the metaphysical out of the mundane, I will always cherish. If Thomas Beller has tried and failed twice to read The Moviegoer, I would recommend that he not bother for a third time. As he confessed, his effort tells more about himself than the quality of the novel. Guy Benson, G ’63 Evanston, Illinois

FIRST WEMBLEY TIE I’d appreciate you making a correction to the article [“Community & Connections”] about Jews in New Orleans that appeared in the December 2017 Tulane magazine. It is true, as the story states when discussing the origins of Wembley Tie Co., that it was Sam Pulitzer, Sidney and Arthur Pulitzer’s father, who cut that first tie. But it was cut from a suit—a beautiful brown suit that looked like silk but was actually a blend of mohair and other fibers that my father, Emanuel Pulitzer, had purchased in downtown New Orleans. Sam was the front man. (Uncle Sam reminded me of Lyndon Johnson, a force of nature.) Emanuel was quiet and had the fashion acumen. He was also a writer, so marketing slogans and branding names came naturally to him. They were invaluable to each other. I don’t think Wembley would have been born if they hadn’t worked as a team as this story so perfectly illustrates. Carol Pulitzer New Orleans APPRECIATION I wanted to write and tell you what a fine publication you put out. As the editor of the Columbia Law School Report for more than a decade (1999–2009), I’ve seen hundreds of alumni magazines, and yours truly stands out. The stories are pithy without being too ”thick,” and your design is light and very friendly. Your photography is also excellent—from portraits like that of Hanna Gamble on p. 31 [Tulane, December 2017] to more candid shots in your med school piece. The writing is also solid. When I edited my magazine, I always imagined a busy alum

coming home from work and seeing our publication in the mail: What would get her/him to sit down with a drink, page through the publication, and get something out of it? Yours fits the bill—neither too heavy nor too slick nor too controversial. Kudos. Very nice work. Oops, almost forgot. My son, Carlo, is a junior at Tulane, majoring in history and urban design. Loves it. James Vescovi New York REPLY TO DÉJÀ VU If Dr. Battig (E ’55) [“Yeah, You Write,” Tulane, December 2017] had taken a course in Geology, he would be aware that the reason Scandinavia is rising has nothing to do with sea-level, but is the result of the fairly recent (12,000 YBP) removal of large amounts of ice from Pleistocene glaciation. Unfortunately, Louisiana did not have any ice to weigh us down. Emily H. Vokes, A&S ’60, G ’62, ’67 Professor emerita of geology Ponchatoula, Louisiana PRESIDENT KELLY TRIBUTE I just wanted to commend you on the recent heartwarming tributes to the late Dr. Kelly. He was a delightful, personable gentleman who bled Tulane green through and through. Many fond memories popped back reading my issue of Tulane magazine [September 2017]. Brian Hughes, A ’81 Crestview, Florida CORRECTION Gayle Maxwell Rosenthal who wrote the “Loyal Fan” letter in the December 2017 Tulane graduated from Newcomb College in 1967, and she lives in Miami. We apologize for the confusion.

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Letter From the Editor

TUlane M








EDITOR Mary Ann Travis



CONTRIBUTORS Marianna Barry Keith Brannon Barri Bronston Mary Cross, SLA ’10 Roger Dunaway Alicia Jasmin Angus Lind, A&S ’66 Mark Miester, A&S ’90, B ’09 Mike Strecker, G ’03

Katarina Majauskas, a student in French professor Jean Godefroy Bidima’s class this spring, ponders his teaching.

DREAMING BIG, THINKING BIGGER AND MAKING THE EXTRAORDINARY POSSIBLE EVERY DAY Six years after she graduated, Jennifer Kilbourne Doherty (SLA ’12) sent an email to French professor Jean Godefroy Bidima, thanking him for his influence. Now living in Paris, working in regional development policy for the French Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development, Doherty recalled taking Bidima’s class, French Society and Institutions, in 2010. “You were very encouraging to me,” wrote Doherty, “and your course challenged me more than I understood at the time.” The transformative educational experiences that Tulane students like Doherty undergo reverberate around the world and the nation. Teaching and learning, buildings and labs, crossing academic disciplines and commitment to community service—all these components of the university— however, require ongoing investment and invention. That’s why the “Only the Audacious” fundraising campaign now under way is so important. The campaign is aimed at many things: Moving forward to join the ranks of the most elite universities

in the world. Taking research to new levels. Bringing and keeping the best professors here. Encouraging the most qualified and diverse students to enroll and succeed at Tulane. Building the best facilities for student life, study and discovery in the 21st century. In this Tulane, we’ve focused stories around the campaign’s pillars. In addition to Transformative Teaching, they are Pioneering Research, Opportunity and Diversity, and Building an Environment to Support Excellence. We talk to provost Robin Forman about research areas to keep an eye on. We feature three professors—Bidima, Mary Olson and James Huck—who transformed the perspectives of three students—Adriana Amador, Shahamat Uddin, Anthonette Miller and many others, as Doherty attests. We explore Tulane’s efforts to be more inclusive and supportive of all students enrolled. Finally, we look at an exciting new facility—The Commons—now under construction on the uptown campus. All these stories—and countless more still to be told—show the possibilities of what can happen when Tulane graduates and friends support this great university as it continues to set itself apart in a fast-changing world and evershifting economy.—MARY ANN TRAVIS



PRESIDENT OF THE UNIVERSITY Michael A. Fitts SENIOR VICE PRESIDENT FOR STRATEGIC INITIATIVES AND INSTITUTIONAL EFFECTIVENESS Richard Matasar VICE PRESIDENT FOR UNIVERSITY COMMUNICATIONS AND MARKETING Deborah L. Grant, PHTM ’86 Tulane (ISSN 21619255) is a quarterly magazine published by the Tulane Office of University Communications and Marketing, 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 University Communications and Marketing, 31 McAlister Drive, Drawer 1, New Orleans, LA 70118-5624. MARCH 2018/VOL. 89, NO. 3

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NOCHI Construction has started on a new 21,000-square-foot facility for

Tulane’s A. B. Freeman School of Business in the New Orleans Culinary & Hospitality Institute building at 725 Howard Ave. Freeman plans to offer degree and non-degree educational programming at the site.



Wave of Change

Open for Business


Campaign Launch Before the new business school complex opened for classes, donors and friends of the university attend the inaugural luncheon of the Marshall Family Commons within the Goldring/Woldenberg Business Complex on Dec. 8, 2017. At the event, Tulane President Mike Fitts launched the ‘Only the Audacious’ fundraising campaign.

TOWN HALL Students speak up about the results of the sexual misconduct climate survey on Jan. 31, 2018. PAULA BURCH-CELENTANO

The Goldring/Woldenberg Business Complex officially opened on Jan. 16— the first day of classes for the spring 2018 semester. The Freeman School unveiled its long-awaited expansion with a New Orleans–style celebration. Accompanied by the Uptown Strutters Brass Band, Tulane provost Robin Forman and Freeman School dean Ira Solomon led a ceremonial second-line into the building and welcomed students, faculty and staff to the B-school’s spectacular new home. “Beautiful, creatively designed spaces are fundamental to the work we do,” Forman said. “They build community, they reinforce community standards, and they make activities possible that wouldn’t have been possible otherwise.” Designed by renowned architect Cesar Pelli, the $35 million expansion unites what were two business school buildings into a single unified structure featuring more than 80,000 square feet of new and renovated space, including 10 new classrooms, more than 30 new student breakout areas and an expansive three-story atrium fronted by a wall of waving glass. The building was also designed to meet LEED Gold standards and will showcase an extensive collection of art, much of it drawn from the Newcomb art collection. “A world-class community deserves a world-class building,” said Solomon. For students, many of whom had only ever attended business classes in the basement of the Howard-Tilton Memorial Library, the new building was a revelation. “It’s super cool,” said senior Robbie Sipos. “It definitely has all the touches you’d expect from a world-class business school.” “The building is really welcoming,” added senior Sarah Lawhorne. “It’s wide open and you can network and mingle.”—Mark Miester

The “heartbreaking” results of the Tulane Climate Survey on Sexual Misconduct were released Wednesday, Jan. 31, at an all-campus town hall. Students with a keen and passionate interest in the survey results quickly filled 400 seats in the Kendall Cram Room of the Lavin-Bernick Center (LBC). The survey—conducted in spring 2017— drew a 47 percent response rate, with 4,644 Tulane students completing the survey out of nearly 10,000 students invited to participate. Among the more striking findings is that 41 percent of undergraduate women survey respondents reported experiencing sexual assault since enrolling at Tulane. In the majority of the incidents of sexual misconduct, the use of alcohol as a weapon by perpetrators was a major factor. The results were presented by Tulane President Mike Fitts, along with Tania Tetlow, senior vice president and chief of staff to the president, and Meredith Smith, assistant vice provost for Title IX and Clery Compliance. Fitts said that Tulane is fully committed to charting a path forward to keeping all Tulane community members safe from sexual assault and harassment. “It is our No. 1 commitment,” he said. The full survey results along with information about the ongoing efforts by the university to prevent and educate the campus community on sexual misconduct are on the Tulane Wave of Change website, tulane.edu/wave of change. —Mary Ann Travis

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In That Number Campaign Goals



Raise $125 million for endowed scholarships to double the amount of funding and dramatically increase the percentage of students from underrepresented communities.


Tulane’s most ambitious fundraising campaign goal ever.

400 50% 50,000 Double the number of engaged alumni from 25,000 to 50,000 during the campaign.

Increase the number of endowed faculty positions across the university to 400, which will bring Tulane in line with peer institutions across the country.


Increase the endowment dedicated to clinical and translational research by 50 percent.



Create 10 Presidential Chairs to attract high-profile multidisciplinary faculty members whose clout and mentorship will elevate the entire university.

1,000 Build The Commons that will transform the undergraduate experience on campus. The new dining hall will include more than 1,000 seats.

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Difference Maker Hero in the Field

Dr. Adaora Okoli graduates from the Tulane School of Public Health and Tropical with a master’s degree in epidemiology in May. The Ebola survior plans to return to her home country, Nigeria, to continue her work as a doctor.

BILL GATES’ HERO In 2016, the Tulane community was introduced to Dr. Adaora Okoli, a graduate student in the Tulane School of Public Health who had contracted—and survived—the Ebola virus while treating patients in Nigeria. Okoli enrolled at Tulane to learn more about epidemiology and outbreak control, especially in developing countries. As an attending physician in the early days of the crisis, Okoli contracted Ebola from a patient in July 2014. After two harrowing weeks and intense hydration treatment, miraculously she walked out of the hospital, determined to prevent and control future outbreaks. After her recovery, she later traveled to New Orleans for a global health conference, where she met Tulane faculty who encouraged her to apply to the School of Public Health. Okoli is now on track to receive a Master of Public Health in May. She plans to return to Lagos and continue her work in clinical medicine bolstered by the knowledge that she’s gained studying epidemiology at Tulane. “I want to give back,” she said. “When an outbreak comes to developing countries, the people suffer … the masses take the fall. I’m interested in outbreak control because I was a victim of something that should have been handled.”


In January, philanthropist Bill Gates recognized Okoli on his website as one of his “Heroes in the Field,” a list that identifies little-known individuals helping to save the world. Okoli’s story and a video interview, which is partially narrated by Gates, is also featured in the Jan. 15, 2018, issue of TIME magazine, for which Gates served as a guest editor. Gates, who recognized Okoli alongside four other heroes, said in his post: “I wanted to call attention to some heroes among us. They are just a few of the many people using their talents to fight poverty, hunger, and disease and provide opportunities for the next generation. To all of them, wherever they are, let me say thank you. The world is a better place because of what you do.” After fielding calls from media, family and friends who had seen Gates’ article, Okoli said, “This is such a great honor for me to be recognized in this way. I never imagined being called a hero. “Some people find out their purpose early in life, like Beyoncé, who knew she could sing at 5 years old. Others find their purpose a little later, but everyone should understand that no person’s purpose is greater than another person’s.” —ALICIA JASMIN AND FAITH DAWSON

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CHECK ON POWERFUL COMPUTERS Michael Mislove, chair of Tulane’s computer science

department and the Herbert Buchanan Professor of Mathematics, has received a $3.67 million grant from the U.S. Air Force Office of Scientific Research to help develop tools and related methodologies for designing and analyzing programming languages for quantum computers.


Algae Blooms Tulane University awarded the $1 million grand prize for the Tulane Nitrogen Reduction Challenge to Adapt-N, a team from Cornell University that developed a cloud-based computer modeling system to predict optimum nitrogen application rates for crops using data on weather, field conditions and soil management practices. The Tulane Nitrogen Reduction Challenge is an international competition to find a significant, scalable solution to reduce nitrogen runoff from farming, a primary culprit behind vast algae blooms that cause massive annual “dead zones” in waters throughout the world. Tulane launched the grand challenge to identify and nurture the most innovative and adaptable technologies to fight hypoxia in 2014. Phyllis Taylor, president of the Patrick F. Taylor Foundation and a member of the Board of Tulane, funded the effort. Adapt-N competed against three others challenge finalists, Cropsmith of Farmer City, Illinois; Pivot Bio of Berkeley, California; and Stable’N of Carmi, Illinois. Teams tested their innovations during a growing season on a farm in northeast Louisiana along the Mississippi River. A 16-member advisory board of academics, scientists, environmentalists, entrepreneurs, farmers and national experts selected the winner based on crop yield, nitrogen reduction and the cost and market viability of their innovation. Adapt-N gives farmers precise nitrogen recommendations for every section of their fields. The tool relies on U.S. Department of Agriculture soil databases, field-specific soil and management information and high-resolution weather data. “We can roughly reduce the environmental impact by about a third—35 to 40 percent—and that’s both the impacts from nitrate leaching, which is the primary concern with the Gulf hypoxia issue, as well as greenhouse gas losses, which is also a big concern,” Adapt-N team leader Harold van Es said.—Keith Brannon

Crop Data A rice field in Bac Son, Vietnam, releases nitrogen, which causes “dead zones” in waters. Tulane awarded $1 million to a team that is finding a solution to this global problem.

Jill Daniel, a psychology and neuroscience professor and director of the Tulane Brain Institute, is studying why males have more impulse-control issues than females, with the ultimate goal of developing more effective preventative and treatment strategies. Daniel received a two-year, $414,000 grant from the National Institutes of Health to gain a better understanding of why males are more vulnerable to such disorders as attentiondeficit hyperactivity disorder and addiction. “The basis for this sex difference is likely complex, but is also likely to include a biological component,” Daniel said. The prefrontal cortex of the brain is thought to influence impulsivity by communicating with the striatum, a brain area that helps control motor output or actions. Two neural pathways of the striatum have opposing effects on behavior. The so-called “go” pathway facilitates motor output whereas the “no-go” pathway inhibits motor output. The prefrontal cortex helps to coordinate the activity of the pathways. Daniel, along with graduate student Jeffrey Darling, is investigating potential sex differences in the prefrontal cortex control over the “go” and “no-go” striatal pathways. “The results of this research should provide a foundation to further explore how biological sex interacts with individual risk factors to increase vulnerability to disorders characterized by deficits in impulse control,” Daniel said. —Barri Bronston



Risky Behavior

IMPULSIVITY The greater prevalence in males of attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder and addiction may be related to the prefrontal cortex of the brain.

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PAYING IT FORWARD Displaced by Hurricane Maria, seventeen students from Puerto Rican and Saint Martin universities are attending Tulane tuition-free this spring while paying tuition at their home universities. Call it the Katrina effect.


New Orleans’ 300 New Orleans & The World: 1718–2018 Tricentennial Anthology is a collection of essays that illuminates how the Crescent City has left its inimitable mark on global history. The book addresses “how did the world influence New Orleans, and how did New Orleans influence the world?” said Richard Campanella, Tulane senior professor of practice in architecture and geography and a contributor to the book. Campanella; Kara Tucina Olidge, executive director of the Amistad Research Center; and Lawrence N. Powell, professor emeritus of history; served on the editorial board of the book, whose contributors include several Tulane alumni and faculty, who are leading scholars and local cultural icons. Brian Boyles (TC ’99), vice president of content for Louisiana Endowment for the Humanities, co-edited the work, which features a foreword by University Professor Walter Isaacson. Tulane alumni, including history professor Emily Clark (NC ’76, SW ’84, G ’95, ’98), musicologist and jazz musician Michael White (G ’79, ’83), archivist Sally Reeves (NC ’65), photographer Sally Asher (SLA ’11, SCS ’16) and Erin Greenwald (NC ’99), also contributed chapters to the illustrated anthology. Greenwald’s chapter looks at the city’s role as the site of the largest slave market in antebellum America. “After the close of the international slave trade in 1808, New Orleans became a nexus for the domestic trade. I talk about the volume of men, women and children brought to New Orleans either on foot, in chain gangs or on steamships down the Mississippi River,” said Greenwald, curator of programs at the New Orleans Museum of Art. Greenwald also discusses local industries that sprang up around the slave trade, including health care and banking. “Recognition of New Orleans’ role is critical within the national narrative of American history and for understanding who we are as a city,” said Greenwald.—Mary Cross


Global Influence New Orleans & The World celebrates the tricentennial of New Orleans. Its contributors include Tulane alumni and faculty.

LOUISIANA STATE BIRD Louisiana’s brown pelican population faced extinction but came back despite storms and the 2010 oil spill.

Tulane’s Karubian Lab, under the direction of Jordan Karubian, associate professor of ecology and evolutionary biology, released a fiveyear, two-part study on the populations of brown pelicans along the Gulf Coast. The work charts the birds’ ability to rebound from near extinction in the state of Louisiana after storms and the 2010 Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill. The first dataset was gathered from 2007– 2010 prior to the oil spill, while the second dataset was collected in 2011–2012, following the oil spill. Tulane PhD student Brock Geary of the Department of Ecology and Environmental Biology oversaw the completion of the post-oil spill data collection and the publication of the study, with important contributions by collaborators Paul Leberg and Scott Walter, from the University of Louisiana–Lafayette and Texas State University–San Marcos. The project was originally conceived as a regional assessment of the genetic status of brown pelicans in the Gulf of Mexico. Named the official state bird of Louisiana in 1966, the brown pelican disappeared from the state’s coastline due to pesticides and overhunting. Brown pelicans were brought from Florida to re-establish the population and were declared as “recovered” by 1995. “Pelicans are pretty durable creatures, but more can potentially go on with their biology than is immediately apparent, so these kinds of analyses can be invaluable conservation tools,” Geary said.—Roger Dunaway



Pelicans Rebound

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ON THE WAY TO THE NFL DRAFT Former Green Wave cornerback Parry Nickerson has racked up honors such as second-team All America by Sports illustrated, first team All America by the American Athletic Conference and honorable mention All America by SB Nation. He was also Invited to the NFL Combine and the NFLPA Collegiate Bowl.



Bowling Strikes

Outfield Play Teamwork Baseball player Grant Witherspoon anticipates a winning season for the Green Wave this spring.

HIGH RANKING The Green Wave bowling team ranked in the top 10 nationally this year.


The wall leading into the Green Wave baseball office at the Wilson Center pretty much says it all. From the San Francisco Giants to the New York Yankees, Tulane baseball players have made a name for themselves in the major leagues. Outfielder Grant Witherspoon hopes to see his name on that wall one day, but for now, he has only one thing on his mind—leading his team to a winning record and a spot in postseason play. “We had players leave, but we have new guys, especially pitchers, who have a chance to take us to the next level,” said Witherspoon, a junior chemical engineering major from Lakewood, Colorado. Witherspoon is determined to be part of that success, and his statistics attest to his potential to do just that. Named to the American Athletic Conference Preseason Team, he hit .299 with 48 runs, 36 RBI and 16 extra base hits last year, including five home runs and 10 doubles. He also led the team with 10 stolen bases and four outfield assists and was second with 67 hits in 56 games. Last summer, he played for the Bourne Braves of the Cape Cod Baseball League. Whether Witherspoon returns to Tulane for his senior season will depend on the MLB draft. Playing in the major leagues is something he’s dreamed about since he was a toddler. But competing on the college level is part of that narrative as well. And he couldn’t ask for a better group of teammates. “It’s all about recruiting the right kind of guys,” he said, “guys who are playing for something more than themselves.”—Barri Bronston

When Hayley Veitch was hired as Tulane’s first women’s bowling coach in 2011, she had to do whatever she could to build a team. She fondly recalls standing in the Lavin Bernick Center at lunch time, practically begging students to give bowling a try. “I said, ‘Come join the bowling team. It will be fun.’ People were interested but not as many as I had hoped. We had a golfer sign up and one that bowled in high school.” The Green Wave finished 16-65 in its inaugural season but rather than be discouraged, Veitch looked ahead with determination and hope. Six years later, the Tulane women’s bowling is considered one of the best in the country, boasting a top-10 ranking as of January 2018. Veitch credits her eight bowlers with putting in the work necessary to achieve such success. Among them are Nikki Williams, a graduate student from Brooksville, Florida, and Hailee Hammond, a junior from Bowie, Maryland. “Time management is key,” said Hammond, a molecular biology major who has bowled since she was 6. “You have to make sacrifices.” Williams, who is studying social work, said the sacrifices are worth it. “I think each time we bowl, we get better,” Williams said. “We all have the same goal— to make it to nationals, to be at the top.” —Barri Bronston

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By Mike Strecker

Tulane President Mike Fitts at The Big Reveal, Dec. 8, 2017.

“It’s time for Tulane to take the lead. It’s time for Tulane to become the most daring, intrepid and enterprising university in the nation.” That is how Tulane President Mike Fitts exhorted the crowd of hundreds of alumni, students, faculty, donors and friends of the university at the public launch of the “Only the Audacious, The campaign for an ever bolder Tulane” at Avron B. Fogelman Arena in Devlin Fieldhouse on Dec. 8. The funds raised through the “Only the Audacious” campaign will boost the university’s pioneering research; increase scholarships and financial aid to attract the best students from across the globe; recruit and retain the world’s best faculty and build a student experience that emphasizes innovation, firsthand research experiences and learning through civic engagement. “This is a pivotal moment in Tulane’s history, a time to dream big, to think big and to act boldly,” Fitts said. “Our faculty are pushing the boundaries of human knowledge and discovery in innovative and daring ways. Tulane is a magnet for the world’s most curious and courageous thinkers, and we are better positioned than ever to fulfill our mission of improving the human condition through research, learning and service. We have had an incredible past and are pursuing an even more extraordinary future through this campaign.” Tulane has accomplished spectacular, remarkable things for decades but with a fraction of the endowment and fewer resources than its wealthier peers in higher education, Fitts said. Tulane has a $1 billion endowment but “the Harvards and the Stanfords of the world have 25 times that,” said Fitts. Building up the endowment is a major component of the new campaign. Endowment funds allow the university to invest in scholarships and faculty support as well as far-reaching programs. The campaign chairs are longtime Tulane supporters Richard Yulman, Phyllis Taylor, and Cathy and Hunter Pierson. More than 54,000 individuals have already donated $880 million during the campaign’s silent phase. While the benefits of these gifts are already apparent on campus in some cases, the campaign has a long way to go before its successful completion. The “Only the Audacious” campaign is more than a fundraising effort, President Fitts said. “It is a bold endeavor. We are at the tipping point. We are doing research that changes the world—and the world is noticing Tulane. “Tulanians are different. We are go-getters. We are adventurous. And we have the academic ambition to explore, create and discover.” Fitts encouraged all alumni and friends of the university to support the campaign and the dynamic force that is Tulane. “It’s time for us to find out just how great we can be,” he said. “Tulane has the nerve to take its place among the elite institutions in the nation.”




MAJOR GIFTS TO THE CAMPAIGN, TO DATE $100 million gift from the Weatherhead Foundation to fund scholarships and support faculty, including endowing the first Presidential Chair. $25 million gift from the family of Dr. John Winton Deming to name the John W. Deming Department of Medicine and fund medical research and physician-scientists making discoveries within the department. $20 million gift from the Yulman family to build Yulman Stadium, plus $10 million gift from Richard Yulman and Katy Yulman Williamson at campaign launch. $15 million gift from the Patrick F. Taylor Foundation to create the Phyllis M. Taylor Center for Social Innovation and Design Thinking. An anchor gift from the Goldring Family Foundation for the renovation and expansion of the A. B. Freeman School of Business, including construction of the $35 million Goldring/ Woldenberg Business Complex. $12.5 million gift from the Albert Lepage Foundation to establish the Albert Lepage Center for Entrepreneurship and Innovation. An anchor gift from The Marshall Heritage Foundation to establish the Marshall Family Commons within the Goldring/Woldenberg Business Complex. $10 million gift from the Carol Lavin Bernick Family Foundation and the Lavin Family Foundation to support faculty research, recruitment, development and student engagement, as well as to endow one of the first three Presidential Chairs. $10 million gift from Steve and Jann Paul for new Science and Engineering Building. An anonymous anchor gift for The Commons, which will provide a new dining facility, study areas, classrooms and a new home for Newcomb College Institute.

1.3 $880



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Robin Forman, provost and senior vice president for academic affairs at Tulane, has a big job. He, along with the deans of the university’s 10 schools and colleges, leads Tulane’s extraordinary faculty, a collection of more than a thousand creative and ambitious intellectual explorers. “Tulane was founded to solve problems. It’s the reason why we’re here,” says Forman. “And it’s a primary reason students come. Tulane students are attending one of the nation’s great research universities and they get to work with and alongside, and learn from, leading scholars who are continually enhancing our understanding of the world and what’s possible.” Great research universities don’t just answer questions, they ask new questions. “Asking a really good question can have more of an impact than answering a question,” says Forman. “It can drive inquiry. It can drive conversation. It can drive exploration. It can inspire people. A good question can change the world.” New questions open new areas of exploration, but that “doesn’t make the work we were already doing any less important,” says Forman. “So if we want to lead in these new areas, and answer these emerging questions, if we want to play an ever larger role on a national and global stage, we need to grow.” That’s where the campaign comes in. “The research we are doing is expensive,” says Forman. “Money matters—it is often the limiting factor. If we want to continue to be on the leading edge, we need to continue to invest. ” It’s about being able to hire the faculty, support them, giving them the tools, facilities and equipment that they need to do their work. “Being a leading research university is in some ways harder than it’s ever been because the world is changing faster than it ever has,” says Forman. “Higher education by its nature doesn’t change that fast.” But changing quickly is necessary if Tulane wants to be at the leading edge of brain science and other areas where the university is asking new questions and deriving new insights, Forman adds.

“In brain science, for example,” says Forman, “we are able to explore phenomena that would have been unimaginable 20 years ago. Compared to today, we knew almost nothing about the brain back then. So, in some sense, all of the questions are new.” Don’t ask Forman to single out the most exciting, impactful research at Tulane. He can’t do that. That would be “like asking a parent to choose their favorite child,” he says. He will say that some of the most rewarding projects are “ones that matter deeply to our local community, whether that’s New Orleans or the Gulf South, and that are of global relevance and importance. Some of the most exciting projects are where those two intersect.”

AMONG THE ELITE Tulane University is a member of the prestigious Association of American Universities, a select group of the 62 leading research universities in the United States and Canada with “preeminent programs of graduate and professional education and scholarly research.” Tulane also is ranked by the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching as a university with “very high research activity.” Of more than 4,300 higher educational institutions rated by the foundation, Tulane remains in a prestigious category that includes only 2 percent of universities nationwide.

Pioneering Research RESEARCH CAMPAIGN OBJECTIVES • Increase endowment dedicated to clinical and translational research. • Create an innovative fund to jump-start ideas and secure federal research funding. • Ensure all interested students can participate in research opportunities. • Create Presidential Chairs to attract high-profile multidisciplinary faculty whose influence and mentorship will elevate the entire university. For more information, visit tulane.edu/audacious




“There’s nothing that is of greater significance here on the Gulf Coast than the complicated river and gulf dynamics, and the relationship with coastal preservation, local ecologies and human health and safety, but these are global concerns— over a third of the world’s population lives within 60 miles of a coast.”

“The first half of the 20th century was a period of extraordinary growth in physics and astrophysics, and the second half of the century was a time of explosive growth in the life sciences. If the first half of the 21st century can be defined as anything, it will be the century of brain science. In recent years we’ve been able to see inside the brain in ways that were unimaginable before. And this work is in its infancy. Brain science as a body of knowledge is going to grow exponentially over the coming decades. It’s a new frontier and Tulane is very much a part of this new scholarly endeavor. Neuroscience as a field just didn’t exist a generation ago.”

“New Orleans doesn’t have just one history, and it doesn’t have just one story. Through the Center for the Gulf South and other liberal arts study, Tulane preserves and celebrates the distinctive cultures of the region and explores their connection to the region’s complicated and challenging history. These questions are about the Gulf South but they’re not just about the Gulf South. They are about how history, geography, politics, art and culture influence each other.”

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Justice does not end with punishment. Knowledge differs from wisdom. Resilience is a way to resist shock. These are among the themes of Jean Godefroy Bidima’s courses in advanced French and philosophy of the self, society and institutions. Sometimes at the end of class, he says, students come to him and say sincerely, “Oh, sir, I do thank you because when I entered your class, I did not know that. Now I know that, and what you taught me is not only to have a grade but it is how to behave as a member of our common humanity.” Bidima is a professor of French and holder of the Yvonne Arnoult Chair in Francophone Studies. He is the author of Théorie Critique et Modernité Négro-Africaine: De l’Ecole de Francfort à la “Docta Spes Africana” (Publications de la Sorbonne, Paris, 1993), La Philosophie Négro-Africaine (Presses Universitaires de France, Paris, 1995), L’Art Négro-Africain (Presses Universitaires de France, Paris, 1997), La Palabre, une Juridiction de la Parole (Editions Michalon, Paris, 1997) and Law and the Public Sphere in Africa (Indiana University Press, 2013). Adriana Amador is a student whose understanding of the world was changed by Bidima. A second-year student on a pre-med track with a psychology major and French minor, from San Juan, Puerto Rico, Amador took Bidima’s class last spring. She says that before she always thought that justice was synonymous with law. However, Bidima changed her perspective on that—and everyone’s in the class. True justice is “more about reconciling with people after they are judged,” she says.

Changing Perspectives French professor Jean Godefroy Bidima teaches about social justice, awakening students to these issues on a global scale.

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“It’s exciting for me when I hear that students take concepts that they were taught in class and then bring them to other areas that they might be studying or thinking about or even to the decisions they make in daily life.” —Mary Olson, associate professor of economics

For his part, Bidima says, “That was my strategy on this course on justice. Justice is not to crush the individual. It is to redeem the person, to secure the community and enrich the institutions.” CORE OF THE UNIVERSITY The kind of exchange that happened between professor Bidima and his student Amador occurs in countless faculty-student interactions all over Tulane. For a university to be truly great, it depends upon well-informed and caring teachers. Tulane has many such teachers and has had for years—as thousands of graduates can attest. To move forward, Tulane plans to continue to invest in its professors. Phyllis Taylor, co-chair of “Only the Audacious,” said at December’s launch of the campaign, “With transformative teaching, Tulane inspires generations of young people to become creative thinkers and inspired doers.” Taylor is the benefactor for her namesake center, The Phyllis M. Taylor Center for Social Innovation and Design Thinking at Tulane, where students learn by doing and where what is possible in the classroom is being redefined. The campaign provides an opportunity “to set a new standard by investing in our creative and brilliant faculty,” Taylor said. CHALLENGING STUDENTS IS KEY Mary Olson is among the hundreds of Tulane professors who transform students’ thinking and insight into how the world works. An associate professor of economics, Olson is also a core faculty member in the Murphy Institute—an interdisciplinary program that connects economics, political science, political economy, philosophy and law. Interdisciplinarity is important for generating interest and motivating students, she says. Olson views her job as trying to serve as a bridge


to help students see new ideas and connections, to not look at things from narrow perspectives but to view the world more broadly. A course needs to be well organized and have a logical flow with a good progression, she says. She takes an interactive approach to facilitate student learning. “I want to engage students with the material,” she says. “I want them to feel like the classroom is a place where they can feel comfortable asking questions.” Among the classes she teaches is Positive Political Economy, a required course for political economy majors. Here, students learn how economic theories, models and frameworks can be used to predict and explain political decision-making. “I think the students find the material incredibly interesting,” she says. The class studies real-world examples of problems associated with group choices in politics as well as the strategic behavior of candidates who are competing for political office and other “puzzles that people might not really understand,” like why “lots of people don’t vote and why groups in Congress have trouble working together.” While the examples sometimes present highly charged topics such as healthcare reform, about which people often have strong opinions, Olson said the work of the class requires more than an opinion. “It requires work. It requires students to understand models of political behavior, the assumptions behind those models and predictions arising from the application of a model in a particular context.” The class is “quite conceptual,” says Olson. “I do believe in challenging the students. That is key.” Olson sets the bar high. That’s what Shahamat Uddin found out when he took Olson’s Positive Political Economy course during his first semester at Tulane. Now a second-year student—and a political economy major— Uddin, from Roswell, Georgia, by way of Bangladesh, signed up for the class in which mainly junior and seniors were enrolled. “I was ready for the challenge,” he says. To get through the class and do well, he went to every single one of Olson’s office hours, as well as every class. “She pushed me through and made sure that I understood the material.” Uddin says he was inspired by Olson’s diligence and compassion. “She cared not just about us getting good grades but about us learning the material. ” Olson told the students, Uddin says, “I want you to know this material because you’ll be able to use or apply it well beyond this course.” That attitude rather surprised Uddin. He now looks at his college education differently. “I came in thinking that I would spend four years here, get my diploma—get the piece of paper—and then go into a career and do exactly what I could have done before college. “But professor Olson taught me that there are skills that we learn in college we can actually use beyond that.” That comprehension gratifies Olson. “It’s exciting for me when I hear that students take concepts that they were taught in class and then bring them to other areas that they might be studying or thinking about or even to the decisions they make in daily life.” Most students “rise to the occasion” in her classes, Olson says. “I see them evolve over the course of the semester.” That they take the frameworks discussed and apply them in other contexts is what “I want to accomplish.” AGENTS OF KNOWLEDGE CREATION The influence of Tulane professors often extends beyond the students to whom they teach academic subjects. In addition to their classroom roles, professors are mentors and advisers outside the classroom. James Huck serves as a mentor to Posse Foundation Scholars. Posse Scholars—carefully selected and trained—are diverse and talented students who may be overlooked in the traditional college selection

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Agents of Knowledge Mentor James Huck listens to student Anthonette Miller



process. They are placed in supportive, multicultural teams—Posses— of 10 students, throughout their four-year undergraduate experience. Huck, administrative assistant professor and assistant director of the Tulane Stone Center for Latin American Studies graduate programs, has been mentoring a Tulane cohort of Posse Scholars from Los Angeles for nearly three years. In his mentoring role, he follows the same philosophy that he has developed in his teaching. “It’s a philosophy that doesn’t want to shut down students as agents of knowledge.” This philosophy has evolved as he has had more contact with students over the years, he says. “I began to understand and respect that, even though I had more factual knowledge or theoretical training that was more substantive than what students brought to the table, students—especially students from backgrounds and experiences that were very different from mine—international students, students from marginalized communities—had important things to say that I hadn’t thought of before. “I didn’t want to dismiss that. I thought it was valuable. That got me questioning, why haven’t I been exposed to this way of thinking?” Huck recognizes that professors, even with their advanced degrees and training, are “not the final authority in knowledge production and creation.” Rather, students “can be agents in the creation of knowledge.” This acknowledgement leads to students who are “more energized, engaged and excited about learning,” says Huck. The result is that he, as a teacher, is rewarded and challenged, too. Anthonette Miller, one of Huck’s Posse mentees, credits him with always being there to “support, help, assist in any way possible” during her time as a student at Tulane. His advice and “listening ear” has been essential to her development, she says. However, it’s a “two-way street,” she says. Teachers, like Huck, need to be able to communicate, “even though we come from different walks of life.” Huck does that, Miller says. He listens—and she listens to him. “You don’t want a teacher that just wants to tell you things: ‘Well, this

is how it’s supposed to be. It’s basically XYZ, and that’s the only way it goes.’” Miller is in her third year at Tulane. She’s a public health major with her sights set on medical school. She’s dreamed of being a doctor her whole life. She started as a neuroscience major but after taking one public health course, she switched her major because, she says, “we have a generation of doctors who solely focus on treating the symptoms.” She says that doctors need to learn to look beyond symptoms to the causes of illness, factors such as living conditions, socio-economic status, healthcare availability and nutrition. “I think more students need to go to medical school through the public health perspective,” says Miller, who is on the maternal and child health track in her public health major. She’s preparing to leave her imprint on the world. “Tulane has definitely expanded my view on the world and how I want to make a change in the world,” she says. Before she changes the larger world, though, Miller is committed to changing Tulane. “I feel it’s important that we are always leaving a footprint no matter what we do.” She’s involved in the Black Student Union and other campus organizations. She notes how the campus is diversifying more and more with each class. She wants to make changes on campus because “what you do affects those who come after you.” Miller is definitely a success story, says Huck. “She’s blossomed at Tulane.” That, he believes, is what transformative teaching is all about.

Transformative Teaching FACULTY EXCELLENCE CAMPAIGN OBJECTIVE • Increase the number of endowed faculty positions across the university. For more information, visit tulane.edu/audacious

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A Place to Belong Students stroll to a Posse Scholars’ dinner on the Tulane uptown campus. They attended the event with their mentors on April 13, 2017.

tronger & Smarter

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“My dream for admissions is to take away the financial gap between the cost of the university and what students can pay.” — Satyajit Dattagupta, vice president for enrollment management and dean of undergraduate admission


“I WAS ONE OF THEM.” It’s easier to know what a person is going through when you’ve already walked a mile in their shoes. That’s what makes Satyajit Dattagupta, vice president for enrollment management and dean of undergraduate admission at Tulane, a key, informed component in the university’s effort to diversify its student population. Dattagupta, who joined Tulane in 2016 to lead the admissions team, grew up in Mumbai, India. He is the product of a middle-class family who depleted their savings to send him to the United States for a college education. “My dad used his life savings to send me abroad. It was a huge gamble to take all of his livelihood and invest in this confused 17-year-old,” recalls Dattagupta. “But knowing my family’s sacrifice also let me know that I had to do well.” Dattagupta says he is aware that “knowing the sacrifice” for some students may serve as a motivation to excel, while for others, the sacrifice can feel too great of a burden to place on their families. To ease the worry of parents and students, Dattagupta often shares his personal story to show that he fully understands their concerns. In fact, his story is one that proves that plans don’t always turn out exactly as they are envisioned. “I came to the United States to major in computer science. That’s what I received a degree in,” says Dattagupta. “My family expected that I would get a job as a computer programmer, but instead I found a career where I can help match students to the right university.” This, he does well. In his first few months at Tulane, Dattagupta made a sweeping change to Tulane’s admission office. He hired a new, fully diverse staff to help with the university’s recruitment of low-income students, firstgeneration students, students of color and international students.

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Since then, there have been new programs put in place to cater to these groups including Bienvenue Tulane, a program that helps potential and admitted students in underserved populations with the cost of airfare for a campus visit. Diversity at Tulane is a work in progress, but the opportunity for students from underrepresented backgrounds is improving through several new initiatives including those from the Office of Admission and the Center for Academic Equity, which was created to provide guidance for these students from their first day through graduation. “My dream for admissions is to take away the financial gap between the cost of the university and what students can pay,” says Dattagupta. Once a student is admitted, the goal is to keep them from changing their minds because of finances. “I can accept if they choose another university because Tulane isn’t the right fit,” says Dattagupta. “It won’t be a great fit for everyone. But choosing another university because they can’t afford Tulane should not be on the table.” Last year, Tulane admission saw a jump from 18 percent students of color to 21 percent and an increase from 3 percent enrolled international students to 5 percent.

Dattagupta leads the

“WE ASK BETTER QUESTIONS.” Michael A. Fitts, Tulane’s 15th president, ushered in his tenure with a clear goal and a new momentum for making Tulane a place where all students can feel like they belong.

admission recruitment effort. Facing page: Students get acclimated through the Summer Experience program.


“WE’VE COME A LONG WAY. BUT NOT FAR ENOUGH.” A 1960s’ picture of Tulane University wasn’t unlike the rest of the Deep South, which at the time was experiencing an uptick in civil rights activity including the desegregation of K-12 schools. At the collegiate level, the world watched as fatal riots broke out following the attempt of African-American student James Meredith to enroll at the University of Mississippi in September 1962. The following year, in the spring of 1963, Tulane admitted its first black students, Pearlie Hardin Elloie and Barbara Guillory. [See “The Desegregation of a University,” Tulane, September 2013.]

The two decades that followed ushered in a whirlwind of actions that helped propel the university forward in efforts of diversity. Carolyn Barber-Pierre, assistant vice president for student affairs, has been instrumental in those efforts since her arrival at the university in 1984 as then director of special services. “My first set of duties when I arrived at Tulane 34 years ago was to work with minority students, commuter students and those with disabilities,” says Barber-Pierre. “I soon realized that there were no services whatsoever for students of color and other underrepresented populations.” Eventually, the commuter student population and disability services were divided among other campus divisions, leaving Barber-Pierre to focus on her one true passion—developing services for the growing number of African-American students at Tulane. Barber-Pierre, with the support of university administrators, helped implement initiatives to increase the number of African-American faculty members at Tulane and introduced a variety of support services for minority students. Ultimately, the university established the Office of Multicultural Affairs in 1988 with Barber-Pierre at the helm. Soon after, organizations like the Tulane Vietnamese Student Association, the Asian American Student Union and the Latin American Student Association were chartered out of Best and a need for the students to have an organized Brightest voice on campus as their populations grew. This page: Satyajit

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“People with diverse backgrounds bring diverse points of view, and researchers will tell you that diverse points of view mean we have a better understanding of complex theoretical principles.” —Rebecca Mark, professor of English and director of the Center for Academic Equity


Through staff changes, including the hiring of Dattagupta as the head of admissions, and the creation of a special task force with a mission to improve diversity, Fitts implemented a new office to address diversity-related issues by approving the creation of the Center for Academic Equity. Rebecca Mark, Tulane professor of English, and Dusty Porter, vice president for student affairs, served as co-chairs of the President’s Task Force on the Undergraduate Experience. Within the first year of President Fitts’ arrival at Tulane in 2014, he called for the formation of this committee to seek ways to make Tulane more reflective of the local community and the world. “We had a strong committee of faculty, staff and administrators who met for a few months to come up with recommendations for the president,” says Mark. During this discovery period, the group concluded that while the university had been actively working to improve the social experience of diverse students through the Office of Multicultural Affairs, there was still more that could be done. “We had seen the growth of the Posse Foundation, College Track and an increase in the number of students of color, first-generation and LGBTQIA students arriving on campus,” says Mark. “Our recommendaLearning Curves tion was that there be a center for diversity and This page: Students inclusion that would support students from an participate in a academic standpoint.” Social Innovation In November 2016, James MacLaren, dean Engagement class. of Newcomb-Tulane College, satisfied the comFacing page: David mittee’s recommendation by launching the Aspillaga, a philosophy Center for Academic Equity. major on the premed Its stated vision is “to ensure that all students track, networks during admitted to Tulane University have the tools the Newcomb-Tulane to thrive and flourish academically by enhancCollege Summer ing exposure to success coaching, generous Experience in 2017. need-based financial aid packages, cutting-edge


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“THE ODDS ARE STACKED AGAINST THEM.” Michael Cunningham, a professor of psychology and Africana Studies at Tulane, has studied the disparities minorities face in education for more than two decades. As the university proceeds in its efforts to improve the experience of underserved populations, Cunningham says it is important to look to the differences in the students’ experiences even before they step foot on campus. “Males and females have distinct experiences as will students of different ethnicities,” says Cunningham, who also serves as associate provost of graduate studies. “Black males have complained that people see them on campus and assume that they are athletes. And while there is nothing wrong with being an athlete, these students are here on academic scholarships and that perception can affect their experience.” Black females, he says, also have a distinct experience. “As a racial minority male on this campus I still have male privilege that my female counterparts do not have,” says Cunningham. “Some students are not used to seeing women of color in positions of power. The reality is that some will look at my gender and assume that I’m more qualified based on that alone.” Similar perceptions of first-generation students or students from less affluent backgrounds may also affect a student’s experience. As an example, Cunningham uses the summer orientation first-year students are invited to attend. During the summer orientation, students have the opportunity to meet new people, finalize class schedules and become familiar with campus before move-in day in the fall. Students who may not be able to afford the summer trip as easily as those students from families in a better financial position are already behind the curve of those who can attend. With this in mind, Tulane has expanded its “fly-in” program (Bienvenue Tulane) to provide needbased assistance to students who find it difficult to afford to attend summer orientation. A welcome weekend for minority students is also in place to allow students of color and other underserved populations an opportunity to visit the university and meet current students who look like them after they’ve been accepted to the university. “A first-generation student may not have the social or economic capital to say that they are going to travel far away,” says Cunningham. “They may not have the economic opportunity to travel home for both Thanksgiving and winter break.” Compare this to students who do not have these worries. “While those students are planning a spring break trip to the beach,


independent research, internships, global travel, site visits, summer fellowships, experiential learning and career enhancement opportunities.” Mark currently serves as the center’s director. “People with diverse backgrounds bring diverse points of view, and researchers will tell you that diverse points of view mean we have a better understanding of complex theoretical principles,” says Mark. “We become smarter, more rigorous as researchers, and ask better questions.” In the past year and a half since the center opened, much success has been achieved thanks to the work of senior program coordinator Paula Booke, says Mark. A research lending library is in place for students to borrow needed supplies for the semester such as textbooks, scientific calculators and computers. Last summer, students, led by Barber-Pierre, traveled to Senegal, West Africa, for a study abroad program. This summer, a group of students will study in the Dominican Republic. A scholarship program has also begun to help create a balance between students who are eligible for income- or need–based awards and those who qualify for academic- or merit–based award funding.

other students may be carrying the burden of their families who are looking to them as a means for social mobility,” says Cunningham. “Not only are they in college to better themselves, but they also represent a legacy of struggle.” “WE HAVE MORE IN COMMON THAN APART.” On Friday, Dec. 8, 2017, President Michael Fitts announced the public phase of Tulane University’s most ambitious fundraising campaign ever. The goal of raising $1.3 billion was presented with four specific components in mind. Among those goals was to increase opportunity and diversity at the university. According to Dattagupta, the fundraising associated with the “Only the Audacious” campaign will benefit the admission process exponentially in its efforts to provide more need-based scholarship funding and to assist in bringing students to Tulane to show them in person what the university offers. The campaign also presents an opportunity for donors to name the Center for Academic Equity, an endeavor that would help enhance the center’s functions and propel the research currently being compiled to the national stage. The goal is to become a model institution for diversity and inclusion efforts. Campaign co-chair and longtime Tulane supporter Richard Yulman said it best during The Big Reveal campaign kick-off event: “Tulane attracts students from farms and inner cities, from every race and religion. We bring our students together with people they would not otherwise meet from all over the globe. We do this because the world relies on our ability to learn that we have more in common than apart.”

Opportunity and Diversity FINANCIAL AID CAMPAIGN OBJECTIVE • Dramatically increase the percentage of students from underrepresented communities. This funding will close the financial gap and enable the best and the brightest to receive a Tulane education. For more information, visit tulane.edu/audacious

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In New Orleans, communal dining is embedded in the city’s DNA. Citizens stand elbow to elbow at newspaper-covered tables piled high with crawfish to partake of the bounty. They make conversation while waiting in line during seasonal pilgrimages to the corner sno’ball stand. Food fosters connections. Tulane students have long embraced local feasting traditions. Undergraduates on Carnival parade routes eat king cake. School of Medicine students gather between classes on Mondays for classic red beans and rice. Now a new campus dining experience, slated to open in 2019, is coming to the uptown campus. The Commons—a $55 million capital project located adjacent to the Lavin-Bernick Center for University Life (LBC)—will include a state-of-the-art dining facility, meeting spaces and a permanent home for the Newcomb College Institute. Tulane President Mike Fitts has declared the new facility “spectacular.” He says that it will provide a gathering place for students The Commons to come together with faculty and staff, Facing page, top: help broaden the intellectual life of the uniRenderings depict the versity and build an even stronger sense of 77,000-square-foot Tulane community. building’s exterior. “At their best, universities bring togethLeft to right: A rain er people from every corner of the world garden is in the plans. and connect them in the most unexpected The entry dining hall ways. Spaces like The Commons create these will allow for creative moments of synchronicity, where ideas are food service. “Hangout born and problems are solved," says Fitts. space” and meeting “This will be a center of campus life, for the rooms will be available students who eat and study there, and for on the third floor. the extraordinary work of the Newcomb College Institute.” INSIDE THE COMMONS “When The Commons opens, it will be a whole different ballgame—a space with open architecture, beautiful views of downtown New Orleans and with plenty of opportunities to be creative with food served,” says Rob Hailey, senior associate vice president of campus services, who has been involved in the planning of the new building for years. Contractors began installing test piles in November 2017 for the new building. Located across from Howard-Tilton Memorial Library, The Commons will connect to the western end of the LBC with a second-floor walkway. The Commons project is being financed in an uncommon way, says Patrick Norton, chief operating officer and treasurer of Tulane. It’s “a 100 percent donor/vendor project. This is unique for Tulane and not exactly the norm in higher education, especially for a project that is predominately a dining hall.” Designed by New York–based architectural firm Weiss/Manfredi, the three-story, 77,000-square-foot structure will have a glass façade devised to allow natural light into the interior. Two floors of The Commons will offer multiple dining options. Study spots will be available in the site’s courtyards, terraces and other landscaped areas. The Commons will include ample space for programs hosted by student organizations and residential colleges, like film screenings, guest lectures and other special events. The facility will be open late, a convenient and comfortable place to catch up with friends over a cup of coffee and collaborate on group class projects, even at 2 a.m.

Ginny Wise, senior vice president for advancement, is thrilled with the possibilities presented by The Commons. “The new facility is intended to be a 24/7 resource for people to meet and interact, both while they’re eating and in between,” says Wise. “The Commons will be a gorgeous and versatile building—one of those buildings that everyone will wonder how we did without because it will be so central to everything on campus.” BEYOND BRUFF For the past 55 years, Tulane students have shared a common culinary thread: They ascended the stairs of Bruff Commons on McAlister Drive to sit down for a meal. Named for former Tulane registrar Richard K. Bruff, the dining hall opened in 1963 and has since served steadily streaming crowds of hungry students. Now it’s antiquated and, with only 450 seats, often overflowing with diners. “Having large crowds of students eat at the same time has been a real constraint at Bruff,” says Dusty Porter, vice president for student affairs, pointing out that The Commons will include 1,100 seats. Plans are for Bruff Commons eventually to be demolished to make way for a new residence hall. Student services offices currently housed there will be relocated. A NEW HOME FOR NCI In The Commons, the Newcomb College Institute will finally bring all its functions related to its mission of educating undergraduate women for leadership and carrying forth the legacy of Newcomb College under one roof. Sally Kenney, executive director of the Newcomb College Institute (NCI) and professor of political science, is pleased to have the institute located in the same building as what will be the premiere location for student dining. She recognizes the importance of placing women at the center of campus life. “Women’s centers are often on the peripheries of campuses. In this new Commons, women are not an add-on or off to the side but right at the heart of the university, as they should be as the majority of students,” she says. NCI will comprise the entire third level of The Commons. The institute’s space will feature an open-air courtyard, an area for archives and special collections, with a dedicated reading room, and offices. NCI’s floor will also offer a 1,950-square-foot event space. “The Newcomb College Institute looks for that magical sweet spot of synergy between research, teaching and service,” Kenney says. “Integrating living, learning and active community engagement is part of the vision of the 21st-century university. This place is going to be a hub of activity for student life.”

Building an Environment for Excellence CAMPUS TRANSFORMATION FUNDRAISING OBJECTIVES • The Commons • Yulman Stadium • Mussafer Hall, home to student services • Goldring/Woldenberg Business Complex (see “News,” p. 6) • Paul Hall for Science and Engineering (see “Wavemakers,” p. 36) • Digital Scholarship Center, with focus on the humanities and sciences, as part of Howard-Tilton Memorial Library

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DARK DEBUT The Tombs, a debut young adult novel by Deborah Schaumberg (A ’88), takes readers on a journey through turn-of-thecentury New York led by a girl with unexplainable powers. Schaumberg appeared at a March 1 book signing, hosted at the Tulane University Bookstore on the uptown campus.


Ever Green

Native Lands


Trent Stockton (SLA ’13) shares an appreciation for the beauty of Louisiana’s cultural and physical landscape in both his professional and personal life. As an archaeologist and tribal liaison for the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE), he consults with Native American groups throughout the state to learn from their intimate knowledge of the Gulf Coast. As president of the board of directors for the nonprofit Teaching Responsible Earth Education (TREE), Stockton also introduces local students to environmental science in the great outdoors. Stockton first became affiliated with USACE when he enrolled in the agency’s Pathways Internship Program in 2009, while pursuing a PhD in anthropology at Tulane. In 2013, he began working full-time as a tribal liaison, establishing partnerships with Native American communities to determine how the Corps’ projects could affect ancestral lands. “We’re legally required to consult with them on a government to government basis. Anything that we do has the potential to impact their cultural and natural resources,” said Stockton. “We ensure compliance with the National Historic Preservation Act, which states that prior to making a decision, like building a levee, a federal agency has to take into account effects on historic properties and archaeological sites.” Stockton collaborates with 13 federally recognized tribes, like the Chitimacha Tribe of Louisiana, that live within the New Orleans District, which extends from Mississippi to Lake Charles. During the past year, Stockton has also introduced New Orleans elementary and middle school students to earth-science education through TREE’s outdoor classrooms. Stockton discovered the nonprofit when his children became enrolled in the program. “I was truly shocked at what they were learning. They were teaching concepts that I encountered in ecology courses during college—such as the water cycle and how to recognize inter-relationships among organisms and their environments—but they were doing it in a way that was easy to understand and impossible to forget,” he said. “This program is unique and effective. I’ve loved working with this organization,” he added.—Mary Cross


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Science Class As a volunteer with an earth science education group, Trent Stockton (SLA ’13) believes in the power of the outdoor classroom.

SWIPE RIGHT FOR GREEN WAVE A new app—Ever Green—connects alumni to information about Tulane events, benefits and news.

There’s a new way to stay in the know about all things Tulane—meet the Ever Green app. The free mobile app puts events, news and alumni benefits at users’ fingertips. In conjunction with “Only the Audacious, The campaign for an ever bolder Tulane,” the Tulane Alumni Association has launched its first-ever engagement initiative, also called “Ever Green.” “We’re excited to give our alumni a way to easily stay connected to Tulane,” said vice president for alumni relations James Stofan. “It’s a great way to be active in the alumni association, even if you aren’t able to make it back to campus.” Because all alumni automatically belong to the Tulane Alumni Association, the app is designed to appeal to alumni near and far; it includes regional and international club information and notifies users about Tulane events in their geographic location. The app also houses users’ official alumni cards, giving them easy access to benefits and the opportunity to receive discounts when registering for select Tulane alumni events through the platform. “We continue to hear from our alumni that they want all their Tulane information in one spot, and the Ever Green app is a simple and fun way to provide that,” said Jesse Hartley, director of alumni engagement. Download the free Ever Green app by searching “Tulane Ever Green” in the Apple App Store or Google Play Store. —Marianna Barry

Dispatch Dr. Barbara Weis W H E R E

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1960s As of Jan. 11, 2018, GEORGE WHITWORTH (A&S ’61, L ’63) has been the honorary consul of Guatemala in Memphis, Tennessee, for 50 years. He has also been a member of the American Bar Association since 1967. JEANNE FOSTER (NC ’63) is the co-translator, with Alan Williamson, of The Living Theatre: Selected Poems by Bianca Tarozzi, professor emerita of the University of Verona. The work was published in fall 2017 by BOA Editions in the Lannan Translations Selection Series. Foster is a professor emerita of Saint Mary’s College of California as well as a poet, writer and ordained Unitarian Universalist minister. Her most recent collection of poems is Goodbye, Silver Sister, which was published by Triquarterly Books/ Northwestern University Press.

African Colonial Prisoners of the Germans: A Pictorial History of Captive Soldiers in the World Wars is the third book in a series by PAUL GARSON (A&S ’68) focusing on the world wars in Europe. The work chronicles the history of African colonial soldiers pressed into European military service during the world wars. Garson is an editor, writer and journalist in Los Angeles. MICHAEL G. GOLDSTEIN (A&S ’68) co-authored Taxation and Funding of Nonqualified Deferred Compensation: A Complete Guide to Design and Implementation, Third Edition, which was published by the American Bar Association and the Real Property Trust & Estate Law Section. Goldstein is executive vice president for The Gottlieb Organization, which is headquartered in Cleveland. A nationally known expert in executive compensation, tax and estate planning, Goldstein is also a fellow of the American College of Employee Benefits Counsel as well as the American College of Tax Counsel and the American College of Trust and Estate Counsel. Three attorneys from the New Orleans office of McGlinchey Stafford PLLC have been recognized in the 2018 edition of Louisiana Super Lawyers, including COLVIN NORWOOD JR. (A&S ’69, L ’72), who was also named on the publication’s “Top 50: New Orleans Super Lawyers” list, as well as KENNETH WEISS (A&S ’72, L ’75) and STEPHEN BEISER (A&S ’80, L ’84).

1970s MARLENE ESKIND MOSES (NC ’72, SW ’73), an internationally recognized family law expert and


Lawyers at Breazeale, Sachse and Wilson LLP who were recognized as Top Lawyers by New Orleans Magazine include ALAN H. GOODMAN (A&S ’67) for bankruptcy and creditor-debtor rights and insolvency and reorganization law, as well as LYDIA H. TOSO (L ’81) for medical malpractice law, PETER J. BUTLER (B ’84, L ’87) for healthcare law, THOMAS M. BENJAMIN (L ’87) for gaming law, and RICHARD G. PASSLER (L ’91) for commercial litigation and government relations practice.

PATIENCE AND PATIENTS More than 30 years after Dr. Barbara Weis (M ’87, PHTM ’87) graduated from Tulane, she finally started to pursue the career that she originally envisioned for herself in international health. After she served in the Peace Corps in Togo, West Africa, and then attended medical school, she expected to return to a developing country. Marriage to a research physicist changed that, prompting an unexpected route through New York and Baltimore. Since 2010, she has directed Sante Total, a U.S.–based group that operates a temporary clinic in Jacsonville, Haiti. Weis is now the coordinator of Sinai Hospital of Baltimore’s advocacy rotation and director of the global health elective, both for pediatric residents. For the global health elective, residents complete online modules on topics like cholera and malaria before they travel to Haiti with Sante Total. Sante Total visits Haiti three times a year for a weeklong clinic, where the doctors and medical students treat wounds, infections and other maladies in people for whom most health care is scarce. “I take residents with me every time I go,” Weis said. “I’m actually teaching as part of [the clinic],” she said. “While we’re there, we discuss all the patients that they see … from a medical point of view, what you see there is amazing, like tropical diseases and advanced illnesses, all sorts of things that you would rarely see here in the United States.” In both Haiti and Baltimore, she focuses on underserved populations. “What’s rewarding about the job that I do is working with a very at-need population.” It “can be very challenging and has its frustrations, but I definitely feel like I can make a difference. The teaching part has been extremely rewarding, watching all the young physicians move on and develop their own careers,” she said. Her own career path sparks advice for new doctors. “Just because you start doing one thing, you can evolve over time and follow your interests. I didn’t get to do international health as I had planned in the beginning, but I’ve sort of come full circle.”—FAITH DAWSON

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Dispatch Sandy Heller founding manager of MTR Family Law PLLC, was selected for inclusion in the 2017 edition of Mid-South Super Lawyers. LEILA PERRIN (NC ’72), vice president of marketing with the Better Business Bureau of Greater Houston and South Texas, was awarded Business Advocate of the Year for 2017 by the state of Texas at a luncheon hosted by the Greater Houston Women’s Chamber of Commerce. The Donation Man, the second suspense novel authored by JUDY KOZONIS SNIDER (SW ’75), is available on Amazon and other websites. The novel is set in New Orleans. STEPHEN WEBRE (G ’75, ’80) has been named professor emeritus of history at Louisiana Tech University, where he retired after 35 years.


Louisiana Super Lawyers named PATRICIA A. KREBS (G ’76, ’80, L ’83) among the top 50 lawyers in New Orleans and top 25 women on the publication’s 2018 list. Krebs is a member at King, Krebs & Jurgens PLLC in New Orleans.

Sandy Heller (right) with artist Rashid Johnson (left) A PASSION FOR ART Sandy Heller (A&S ’94), New York–based art consultant and collector’s advocate, had seen Leonardo da Vinci’s Salvator Mundi, the Renaissance painting of Jesus, many times before it went up for auction in November 2017. As the adviser for the painting’s seller, Heller had viewed the painting in a variety of settings, but nothing prepared him for the day it was installed at Christie’s auction house in New York City, a moment he described as “breathtaking.” “I think people were conscious that this is a moment that can never be repeated,” he said. “With the Leonardo coming to auction at Christie’s and going on view to the general public, these audiences were provided an impossibly intimate proximity to a painting, painter and idea that will never happen again.” It sold for more than $450 million. “This painting has tremendous power,” Heller added. “I’ve never seen anyone look at a work of art the way they looked at the Salvator Mundi—with a total sense of awe.” Whether working with Impressionist paintings from the 19th century or contemporary art, Heller recommends to his clients which works to buy for their collections. “Those conversations are always stimulating and interesting, especially when we disagree,” he said. While Heller was drawn to art from an early age, he preferred the dialogue around a work of art to the actual making of it. “I was a terrible artist! I tried my best, but always found myself wandering over to the student across the studio to talk ideas or technique—anything other than going back to continue making what I honestly recognized as my own mediocre work. In retrospect, this was the lightning bolt we all hope for. By recognizing I didn’t have what it took to be an artist, I likely avoided years of struggle while continuing to explore my passion for learning about art—which undoubtedly paved the way for what would be a career as an art consultant.” Even today, if he can spare the time, his workday might include a visit to his favorite museums, where he contemplates works of art not just with the eye of a consultant, but also with the reverence of a lifelong art lover. “What I love about art is, we’re all students here—if you’re a viewer of art, you’re a student. And art is the teacher,” he said. “Great art has the ability to transport and transcend. It’s going to take you somewhere as long as you’re open to letting that happen.”—FAITH DAWSON


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After more than 30 years at Southern Company, FRANK BRANNON (A&S ’77) officially retired from full-time employment. Brannon plans to pursue his passion for personal financial planning. He received his certified financial planner license 20 years ago. SUSAN MARTIN (NC ’78) retired as senior director of contracting, business development, marketing and communications for Johns Hopkins Home Care Group.

1980s JOSE R. COT (A&S ’85, L ’88) was appointed as an adjunct lecturer at Tulane Law School and will be teaching a course on Cuban law and U.S.Cuban relations during the spring 2018 semester. A partner at New Orleans law firm Hurley & Cot APLC with TIMOTHY P. HURLEY (A&S ’80, L ’83), Cot specializes in maritime litigation and insurance coverage disputes. DOUGLAS M. NADJARI (A&S ’80, L ’83), a partner at Ruskin Moscou Falitschek PC in Uniondale, New York, was elected as chairman of the board of directors for Island Harvest Food Bank. Nadjari joined the firm in 2011. He serves as a member of its health law regulatory, white-collar crime defense and litigation departments. In Saving Bobby: Heroes and Heroin in One Small Community, RENEE HODGES (NC ’81) shares the gripping story of how her family and community rallied together to help her nephew during his 16-month recovery from an addiction to prescription painkillers. The deeply personal account details how Hodges grappled with her family’s history of addiction. BRIAN HUGHES (A ’81) completed his first year as public information officer for the Crestview Police Department in Crestview, Florida. For

Dispatch Max Hazan W H E R E

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five years, Hughes has also served his community as president of the Crestview Area Sister City Program. University of New Orleans civil engineering professor NORMA JEAN MATTEI (E ’82, G ’94) is the first woman selected as a national honor member of Chi Epsilon, an honor society for civil engineering students and professionals. The honor is based on accomplishments in the civil engineering field and contributions to the organization’s vision, mission and purpose. Of more than 114,000 Chi Epsilon members nationwide, Mattei is the 64th person elevated to national honor member status.


In September 2017, GARY N. STEPHENSON (E ’83) retired as a design engineer and project manager from the engineering and inspections department in Greensboro, North Carolina, after almost 31 years of service. CYNTHIA A. BERMAN (L ’84), principal at the law firm Kramon & Graham in Baltimore, was recognized by Maryland Super Lawyers 2018 for her work in real estate. ANDREW D. SHENKAN (A&S ’84) married Nandi O. Linscombe in Lafayette, Louisiana, on Oct. 14, 2017. The couple enjoyed their honeymoon in Hualalai, Hawaii. On Aug. 22, 2017, JAMES A. CARSON (B ’85) of Greenwich, Connecticut, was issued a patent for his system, method and device for utilizing network connectivity by combining allocated bandwidth for optimized broadband access, a highly efficient method for creating on-thefly broadband and ultra broadband network connection. THOMAS LACHMAN (E ’85, B ’89) has been promoted to CEO of Duracell and will work from the corporation’s Chicago office. Lachman was previously vice president of Procter & Gamble’s subsidiaries Gillette and Old Spice before moving up to become president of its Canadian operations. An exercise planner for T-Solutions, SEAN P. MURPHY (A&S ’89) received his PhD in international relations from Old Dominion University of Norfolk, Virginia, in December 2017.

1990s The Orange Unified School District Board of Trustees appointed GUNN MARIE HANSEN (NC ’90) as the new superintendent of schools in Orange, California. Hansen previously served as an elementary and high school teacher and in other roles. ANNE ELIZABETH WITSCHEY-ADAMS (NC ’90) of Monterey, Virginia, was honored by the National Newspaper Association with the 2017 Emma C. McKinney Award for her career in journalism.

SWITCHING GEARS As the founder of Hazan Motorworks, custom motorcycle designer Max Hazan (TC ’05) has carved out a career as a mad scientist of machinery. Each of Hazan’s one-of-a-kind creations are handcrafted in his downtown Los Angeles studio. “I usually have a backlog of potential projects in my head. It all starts with a unique engine,” he said. Hazan then begins a months-long building process, sculpting metal parts and suspending them on his workbench before sketching the motorcycle’s final design. “The wheels are the only parts that I don’t make. One hundred percent of the other pieces are built here,” he said. Hazan first began building bikes in 2011 when he was sidelined by an off-road motorcycle crash. The Long Island, New York, native majored in psychology at Tulane and noted that his family has multiple ties to the university. One brother, Alec Hazan (B ’16), majored in finance, while another, Kevin Hazan, is currently a second-year student in the A. B. Freeman School of Business. “I wound up breaking a leg, so I was couch-bound for a long time,” he said. “Looking to pass the time, I put an engine in this beach cruiser bike that I had.” Hazan completed the construction faster than expected, so he decided to add some motorcycle parts to the vehicle. “It initially wasn’t something that I had planned to do for a living. My dad gave me the push to do it,” he said. Supporting his son’s passion, Hazan’s father encouraged him to take a year off from his full-time job to pursue motorcycle design as a career. Hazan opened a workshop in Brooklyn, New York, in 2012. The mechanical maestro’s first custom design appeared in the motorcycle publication Pipeburn and won its 2013 Bike of the Year Award. Hazan also took home the award in 2014 and 2015. In October 2017, Hazan’s talents were featured in the web series “Raw Craft” alongside globetrotting chef Anthony Bourdain. During the episode, Bourdain talked shop with Hazan while he molded parts for his latest project. “It was challenging to capture the motorcycle build process within two days, but it was fun,” said Hazan. Hazan says he frequently receives requests for guidance from craftsmen hoping to start their own careers building custom bikes. When answering the inquiries, Hazan stresses the importance of originality. “I don’t look at other motorcycles for inspiration. Push yourself to do something different in order to separate yourself from the pack. That’s what has worked for me.” —MARY CROSS

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HIGH-ART HANDBAGS Susan Tancer (NC ’79) designs a line of one-of-a-kind, hand-painted clutches, totes and weekender bags. Crafted in Palm Beach Gardens, Florida, the eco-friendly pieces of wearable art are hand-signed by the artist. Tancer also donates 10 percent of sales to MD Anderson Cancer Center— the hospital that saved her life 13 years ago during her battle with brain cancer.


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On Nov. 30, 2017, JULIE GREENWALD (NC ’91) was honored with the Executive of the Year award at this year’s Billboard Women In Music event. Singer and songwriter Ed Sheeran presented Greenwald with the award. As the chairman and COO of Atlantic Records, Greenwald helped launch Sheeran’s musical career, along with other successful artists like Bruno Mars, Cardi B, Portugal. The Man and Migos. JEFF RYAN (A ’92) is currently the director of design for Christner, an architecture, planning and design firm located in Clayton, Missouri. He originally joined the design team in 2013. Ryan has more than 20 years of experience designing buildings and was appointed to the firm’s three-person “Office of the President.”

2000s NICOLE CHAUVIN (NC ’00) is the owner of wedding floral company IRIS floral + event design studio in New Orleans. Chauvin’s business creates eclectic designs for local and destination brides looking for unique flowers to complete their wedding. JENAE GUREFF (E ’00) has made partner at Cantor Colburn LLP, Alexandria, Virginia, one of the largest intellectual property law firms in the country. Gureff focuses her practice on the preparation and prosecution of patent applications related to medical devices and mechanical technologies. She is also an active member of the American Intellectual Property Law Association.

RICHARD NERE (SLA ’08) was nominated to the board of directors for the Waltham Philharmonic Orchestra in Waltham, Massachusetts.

2010s LEANNE REDMAN (M ’11), an associate professor and director of the Reproductive Endocrinology and Women’s Health Research Program at Pennington Biomedical Research Center in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, co-authored a study published in the Journal of Medical Internet Research, demonstrating the use of mobile phones in lifestyle interventions for pregnant women for gestational weight management.

MICAH C. ZENO (L ’16) has joined Gordon Arata Montgomery Barnett as an associate in the firm’s New Orleans office. Before joining the firm, Zeno clerked for Judge June Berry Darensburg of the 24th Judicial District Court of Louisiana.

KEY TO SCHOOLS SLA (School of Liberal Arts) SSE (School of Science and Engineering) A (School of Architecture)

KATHRYN DAVIS WAMPOLD (SSE ’11) married Morgan Wampold on Oct. 7, 2017, in a ceremony held in uptown New Orleans. The two plan to remain in New Orleans.

B (A. B. Freeman School of Business)

JAKE TOSTI (SLA ’14) will graduate in May 2018 with a Juris Doctor from Suffolk University Law School in Boston. He will then begin working as a lawyer for Bowditch & Dewey LLP, a law firm based in Worcester, Massachusetts.

PHTM (School of Public Health and Tropical Medicine)

MADELINE ROSE (SLA ’15) and HALLE KAPLANALLEN (SLA ’15) teamed up to create the monthlong female-focused 2017 exhibition “Femaissance,” which spotlighted the work of both established and emerging women painters, photographers, potters, and jewelry and clothing designers in New Orleans.

L (Law School) M (School of Medicine) SW (School of Social Work)

SCS (School of Continuing Studies) A&S (College of Arts and Sciences, the men’s liberal arts and sciences college that existed until 1994) TC (Tulane College, the men’s liberal arts and sciences college that existed from 1994 until 2006) NC (Newcomb College, the women’s liberal arts and sciences college that existed until 2006) E (School of Engineering) G (Graduate School) UC (University College, the school for part-time adult learners. The college’s name was changed to the School of Continuing Studies in 2006.)

MARA KARLIN (NC ’01) explores the key national security issue of how to effectively build partner militaries within her first book, Building Militaries in Fragile States: Challenges for the United States. She was also honored in 2016 as Newcomb’s Young Alumna of the Year. VALERIE E. FONTENOT (SLA ’07) joined the law firm of Baldwin Haspel Burke & Mayer LLC in New Orleans as a litigation attorney. Her practice is based in litigation of civil matters, particularly the trial and appeal of healthcare matters, including medical malpractice defense and compliance. AMANDA KING (L ’07) has been named a partner in the Sarasota, Florida, law firm of Syprett, Meshad, Resnick, Lieb, Dumbaugh, Jones, Krotec & Westheimer PA. King joined the firm in 2010 and focuses on assisting clients in a wide variety of marital, divorce, alimony, child custody, paternity, child support and domestic violence issues. RYAN MCDONALD (SLA ’08) joined Wooden McLaughlin LLP as an associate attorney. Practicing primarily from the firm’s office in Bloomington, Indiana, McDonald will concentrate on commercial real estate finance and development.


M A R C H 20 1 8 T U L A N E M AGA Z I N E


Ever Green. Ever Bolder. Introducing Tulane’s first ever alumni recognition program. Download the EverGreen app and stay connected! alumni.tulane.edu/evergreen


45th Alumni Awards Gala

Albert N. Lechter (B ’49) of Livingston, New Jersey, on Nov. 6, 2017. James W. McCrary Jr. (E ’49) of Dallas on Sept. 30, 2017.

The annual Alumni Awards Gala recognizes Tulane University alumni for their hard work and dedication to the university and their communities. They ceremony was held on March 24, 2018, at The National World War II Museum in New Orleans. DERMOT MCGLINCHEY LIFETIME ACHIEVEMENT AWARD

Tom and Gayle Benson

Tom Benson is the owner of the New Orleans Saints and New Orleans Pelicans. Gayle Benson serves as the club’s executive officer. In 2014, thanks to a generous gift from the couple, Benson Field at Yulman Stadium opened, returning Green Wave football to the uptown campus. That year, Gayle Benson also joined the Board of Tulane. DISTINGUISHED ALUMNI AWARD

Mignon Faget

Cornelius G. Whitley (A&S ’49, M ’53) of Morgan City, Louisiana, on Nov. 5, 2017. Mary Landry Mithoff (NC ’50) of Kenner, Louisiana, on Oct. 24, 2017. Julian B. Rauch (E ’50) of Melbourne, Florida, on Oct. 14, 2017. A.A. Restum (A&S ’50) of Los Angeles on Feb. 16, 2016. Kong Wong (E ’51) of Harahan, Louisiana, on Dec. 13, 2017.

A fifth-generation New Orleanian, Mignon Faget (NC ’55) has long been an active philanthropist, preservationist and art advocate. Faget has donated over half a million dollars of proceeds from her designs to various art organizations and nonprofits in New Orleans.

John Garoogian (SW ’52) of Clovis, California, on Nov. 6, 2016.


Norman G. Spray (A&S ’52) of Bedford, Texas, on Oct. 9, 2017.

Michael G. White

Michael White (G ’79, ’83) leads the Original Liberty Jazz Band and holds the Rosa and Charles Keller Endowed Chair in the Humanities at Xavier University of Louisiana. He was awarded a National Heritage Fellowship from the National Endowment for the Arts and has received the President’s Medal from Tulane University in 2014. INTERNATIONAL AWARD FOR EXCEPTIONAL ACHIEVEMENT

Maria L. Gutierrez

The Minister of Trade, Industry and Tourism of Colombia, María Lorena Gutiérrez (B ’99, G ’03) has broad experience in public policy and administration, collaborative governance, and public-private partnerships. She has received several national and international distinctions, including advisory committees and councils. SCOTT COWEN SERVICE AWARD

Dr. John E. Hevron Jr.

Since 1979, Dr. John Hevron (M ’70) has served as an instructor with the Tulane University School of Medicine. Hevron has also used his medical expertise as a volunteer physician especially in Central America, where he has led medical missions. ROBERT V. TESSARO YOUNG ALUMNI VOLUNTEER AWARD

Gregory A. Miller

Greg Miller (SLA ’11) leads public relations strategy and outreach efforts as a principal in The Richards Group. He has served as the president of the Tulane Club of Dallas/Fort Worth since 2013 and as a member of the Young Alumni Development Task Force. Miller will begin a term with the Tulane Alumni Association Board of Directors in July. TULANE MEDICAL ALUMNI ASSOCIATION OUTSTANDING ALUMNI AWARD

Dr. E. Wesley Ely Jr.

Dr. Wes Ely (A&S ’85, M ’89, PHTM ’89) is a subspecialist in pulmonary and critical care medicine and a professor of medicine in the Division of Allergy, Pulmonary and Critical Care Medicine at Vanderbilt University School of Medicine. He conducts patient-oriented, health-services research. Ely has been continuously federally funded for 15 years. TULANE SCHOOL OF PUBLIC HEALTH AND TROPICAL MEDICINE OUTSTANDING ALUMNI AWARD

Dr. Bernard H. Eichold

Dr. Bert Eichold (A&S ’75, PHTM ’78, M ’79, PHTM ’80) is the health officer for Mobile County and also serves as the area health officer for Public Health Area XI for the state of Alabama Department of Public Health.

Billie Harper Jackson (NC ’52) of Littleton, Colorado, on Oct. 23, 2017.

Joan Morrison Tupper (NC ’52) of New Orleans on Nov. 27, 2017. Barbara Levine Weinstein (SW ’52) of Seattle on Sept. 17, 2017. Ivan E. Wilhelm (A&S ’52) of Huntington, Indiana, on Nov. 11, 2017. Alice Lasassier Barber (SW ’53) of Metairie, Louisiana, on Nov. 21, 2017. Robert F. Carter Jr. (M ’53) of Ocean Springs, Mississippi, on Nov. 28, 2017. Dana G. King Jr. (A&S ’53, M ’56) of Sarasota, Florida, on Aug. 24, 2017. George G. Sterne (A&S ’53, M ’56) of New Orleans on Nov. 7, 2017. Herbert I. Weyer (A&S ’53) of New Orleans on Oct. 14, 2017. Thomas J. Coker Jr. (E ’54) of Placentia, California, on Oct. 18, 2017. Donald L. King Sr. (A&S ’54, L ’56) of New Orleans on Nov. 14, 2017. Charles W. Lane III (B ’54, L ’59) of New Orleans on Nov. 15, 2017. Robert S. Mellon (L ’54) of Morro Bay, California, on Oct. 12, 2017. Donald E. Perez (E ’54) of Tampa, Florida, on Nov. 4, 2017. Courtney F. Picou (E ’54, ’67) of Diamondhead, Mississippi, on Oct. 6, 2017. David G. Stafford Jr. (L ’54) of Alexandria, Louisiana, on Dec. 7, 2017. Bettie Hill Scott (NC ’56) of Montgomery, Alabama, on Sept. 28, 2017.

T U L A N E M AGA Z I N E M A R C H 20 1 8


MAYAN AUTHORITY Harvey Bricker, a professor emeritus of anthropology, died in Gainesville, Florida, on Jan. 18, 2017. In his 37 years as a Tulane faculty member, Bricker introduced students to Paleolithic archaeology of the Old World and the rise of civilizations. During his retirement, he completed writing Astronomy in the Maya Codices in collaboration with his wife, Victoria Bricker, an expert in Maya hieroglyphic writing and a fellow professor emerita of anthropology. They started the project together in 1981, and the award-winning book was published by the American Philosophical Society in 2011.


Ellen Griffen Suthon (NC ’56) of Covington, Louisiana, on Nov. 24, 2017.

Donald C. Hardy (G ’64) of New Orleans on Oct. 9, 2017.

Willis E. Conatser (G ’69) of Kenner, Louisiana, on Oct. 24, 2017.

Robert C. MacKay (M ’57) of Kerrville, Texas, on June 16, 2017.

Nellie Cornelia Monte Moisuk (NC ’64) of Richardson, Texas, on Sept. 14, 2017.

James L. Pugh (A&S ’69) of Statesboro, Georgia, on Oct. 31, 2017.

Martin P. Rappaport (A&S ’57, M ’60) of Conroe, Texas, on Sept. 15, 2017.

Julian R. Murray Jr. (L ’64) of Metairie, Louisiana, on Sept. 27, 2017.

Joseph F. Boston (G ’70) of Naples, Florida, on Oct. 18, 2017.

Robert K. Chipman (G ’58, ’63) of Fernandina Beach, Florida, on Sept. 29, 2017.

Kermit L. Roux Jr. (G ’64, M ’64) of Metairie, Louisiana, on Nov. 30, 2017.

Michael W. Lummen (E ’70) of North Augusta, South Carolina, on Oct. 16, 2017.

Edward P. Des Plas (E ’58) of Wichita, Kansas, on Nov. 6, 2017.

Albert F. Voltolina Sr. (UC ’64) of Metairie, Louisiana, on Sept. 28, 2017.

Paul E. Telerski (SW ’70) of Corning, Ohio, on Nov. 6, 2017.

Jane Smith Gwyn (NC ’58) of New Orleans on Oct. 10, 2017.

Harold G. Alderman (G ’65, ’68) of Waltham, Massachusetts, on Sept. 15, 2017.

Titus W. Bender (SW ’71, ’76) of Rockingham, Virginia, on Dec. 8, 2017.

John W. Kelly III (E ’58, B ’61) of Metairie, Louisiana, on Nov. 21, 2017.

James M. Breman (A&S ’65) of Atlanta on Sept. 18, 2017.

Joseph R. Brown Jr. (A&S ’71) of Troy, Illinois, on Sept. 20, 2017.

James M. McCready (M ’58) of Metairie, Louisiana, on Oct. 1, 2015.

Edward V. DeBoeser Jr. (G ’65) of Gettysburg, Pennsylvania, on Nov. 17, 2017.

Clemence Saucier Devereux (G ’71) of Slidell, Louisiana, on Dec. 10, 2017.

Rudolph J. Miller (G ’58) of Stillwater, Oklahoma, on Dec. 10, 2017.

Karen Lucas Gibson (SW ’65) of New Orleans on Oct. 11, 2017.

Steven L. Gilmer (A&S ’71) of Indian Harbour Beach, Florida, on Feb. 4, 2017.

Jerry C. Pickrel (M ’58) of Virginia Beach, Virginia, on Sept. 22, 2016.

Jim C. Kizziar (G ’65) of Little Rock, Arkansas, on Nov. 3, 2017.

Roseann Poole (PHTM ’71) of Tallahassee, Florida, on Oct. 1, 2017.

Clyde E. Buzzard II (A&S ’59) of Takoma Park, Maryland, on Oct. 18, 2017.

Anselm H. Morton III (A&S ’65) of Greenville, Alabama, on Oct. 7, 2016.

Allan G. Pulsipher (G ’71) of Baton Rouge, Louisiana, on Nov. 16, 2017.

Victor V. Cavaroc Jr. (A&S ’59) of Raleigh, North Carolina, on Dec. 10, 2017.

Donald R. Rankin (M ’65) of Forest Falls, California, on July 1, 2017.

David R. Hoffman (SW ’72) of Danbury, Wisconsin, on Dec. 4, 2017.

C. Hamilton Higginbotham (NC ’59, G ’61) of Monroe, Louisiana, on Nov. 18, 2017.

Harold B. Carter Jr. (L ’66) of Little Rock, Arkansas, on Oct. 16, 2017.

Edna Gannon Treuting (PHTM ’72, ’78) of Mandeville, Louisiana, on Nov. 13, 2017.

Barbara Blaine Smith (NC ’59) of Greensboro, Georgia, on Nov. 24, 2017.

David E. Crais (A&S ’66) of Hendersonville, North Carolina, on Sept. 22, 2017.

William T. Benham (L ’73) of Spring, Texas, on Sept. 2, 2017.

Nathan T. Butcher Sr. (B ’60) of Milton, Florida, on Sept. 17, 2017.

Paul E. Petty Jr. (A&S ’66) of Fayetteville, Arkansas, on Nov. 28, 2017.

Kamil E. Bahou (M ’74) of Tustin, California, on Oct. 20, 2015.

Robert H. Carpenter Jr. (A&S ’60) of Baton Rouge, Louisiana, on Dec. 8, 2017.

Joseph Tusa Jr. (UC ’66, B ’72) of New Orleans on Nov. 22, 2017.

Stephen L. Pearce (G ’74) of New Orleans on Dec. 4, 2017.

R.D. Mackie (A&S ’60) of Abita Springs, Louisiana, on Oct. 31, 2017.

Patricia Anderson (SW ’67) of Belton, Texas, on Oct. 3, 2017.

John C. Wilson Sr. (G ’74) of Clinton, Louisiana, on March 29, 2017.

Richard N. Faber (A&S ’61) of Chicago on Dec. 13, 2015.

John M. Davis Jr. (B ’67) of New Orleans on Oct. 22, 2017.

Robert J. Almeida (B ’75) of Napa, California, on Nov. 29, 2017.

Emile J. Fichter Jr. (UC ’61) of Metairie, Louisiana, on Dec. 13, 2017.

Warren A. Goldstein (L ’67) of New Orleans on Nov. 14, 2017.

Michel F. Bertucci (A&S ’75, L ’80, B ’81) of Lafayette, Louisiana, on Oct. 13, 2017.

Joseph H. Lawson (L ’61) of New Orleans on Nov. 17, 2017.

Maurice J. Porte Jr. (E ’67) of New Orleans on Sept. 30, 2017.

Robert S. Easton Jr. (M ’75) of Peoria, Illinois, on Aug. 8, 2017.

Larry B. Phillips III (A&S ’61) of Houston on Nov. 2, 2017.

Philip J. Bray (L ’68) of Hagerstown, Maryland, on Dec. 8, 2017.

Norman W. Ershler (L ’75) of Las Vegas on Nov. 13, 2017.

J.S. Artz (E ’62, M ’67) of Moreland Hills, Ohio, on Nov. 25, 2017.

Jessy Wolfe Dirks (NC ’68) of New York on Feb. 15, 2015.

Watts Wacker Jr. (A&S ’75) of Westport, Connecticut, on Sept. 15, 2017.

Richard S. Favor (A&S ’63) of Metairie, Louisiana, on Dec. 1, 2017.

Robert M. Hardy Jr. (A&S ’68) of Houston on Oct. 28, 2017.

Margaret Smith Johnston (UC ’76) of Harahan, Louisiana, on Nov. 24, 2017.

Charles A. Girard (G ’63, ’83) of New Orleans on Nov. 11, 2017.

Hazel McKinney McKoin (SW ’68) of Maumelle, Arkansas, on Sept. 30, 2017.

Thomas H. Kingsmill III (A&S ’76) of New Orleans on Nov. 23, 2017.

Don D. Moore (G ’63) of Baton Rouge, Louisiana, on July 18, 2017.

Margaret White Poorman (SW ’68) of Houston on Nov. 22, 2017.

Walter J. Schneider (A&S ’77) of Englewood, New Jersey, on Sept. 15, 2017.

Josef Shamis (UC ’63) of Simi Valley, California, on Jan. 2, 2017.

John B. Bass Jr. (M ’69) of Mobile, Alabama, on Dec. 16, 2017.

Barbara Martin (G ’78) of New Orleans on Sept. 25, 2017.


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Patrick J. Duggan (E ’79) of Roodhouse, Illinois, on Sept. 30, 2017. W.D. Hawley (PHTM ’79) of Hattiesburg, Mississippi, on Oct. 17, 2017. Sandra McDermott Haynes (SW ’80) of Ponte Vedra Beach, Florida, on Aug. 8, 2017. David L. Hoskins (L ’80) of New Orleans on Sept. 28, 2017. Vahid G. Parvazi (A&S ’80) of Baton Rouge, Louisiana, on Sept. 10, 2017. Catherine Bedell Reynolds (NC ’80) of Salisbury, North Carolina, on Dec. 11, 2017. Robert C. Kohler III (A ’81) of Fayetteville, Arkansas, on Nov. 28, 2017. Wyatt B. Aiken (A&S ’82, B ’83) of Memphis, Tennessee, on Nov. 18, 2016. Paula Harty (SW ’82, PHTM ’83) of Albuquerque, New Mexico, on Oct. 16, 2017. Thomas J. Hewett (E ’84) of Houston on Nov. 5, 2017. Phyllis Male Western (PHTM ’85) of Saratoga Springs, New York, on Nov. 5, 2017. Ronald C. Breedlove (SW ’88) of Baton Rouge, Louisiana, on Oct. 22, 2017. Barbara Staff (G ’88) of New Orleans on Nov. 1, 2017. Karen Hathaway (L ’89) of Bellingham, Washington, on Sept. 1, 2017. Patrick J. Easter (SW ’93, PHTM ’94) of Washington, D.C., on Nov. 29, 2017. Robert A. Ricker Jr. (UC ’93) of Wayne, New Jersey, on Nov. 4, 2017. Carolynne Borst Flint (PHTM ’94) of Chicago on Oct. 8, 2017. Thomas D. Kerr Jr. (L ’95) of Knoxville, Tennessee, on Nov. 13, 2017. Jacques S. Whitecloud (M ’98) of New Orleans on Nov. 27, 2017. John P. Hammond Jr. (B ’99) of Metairie, Louisiana, on Nov. 1, 2017. Gwendolyn Lundgren (UC ’99) of Lewis Center, Ohio, on Sept. 2, 2017. Aaron M. Selinger (A ’00) of Minnetonka, Minnesota, on Dec. 27, 2016. Ronald L. Clark (UC ’03) of Marrero, Louisiana, on Nov. 21, 2017. Julianna Hammond (NC ’03) of New Orleans on Dec. 5, 2017. Robert J. Maher III (E ’05, SSE ’07) of Harvey, Louisiana, on Nov. 10, 2017. Patrick L. Ruth (SSE ’08) of Collinsville, Mississippi, on Oct. 1, 2017.

Robert Henry Boh died on Oct. 20, 2017, in New Orleans. Bob’s experience with Tulane University began in 1947, over 70 years ago: As a 16-year-old, he graduated as salutatorian from Jesuit High School in New Orleans and then enrolled in Tulane’s School of Engineering. Four years later, he graduated as a member of the civil engineering Class of 1951. Bob’s class was unique, being one of the largest recorded at that time, and consisting of a mix of returning World War II veterans and teenagers fresh out of high school. During the undergraduate program, the class became closely knit, and lifetime friendships were formed. Bob was very well liked, and was the academic star of the class. After graduation, Bob continued his education, earning his master’s degree in 1953. From 1952 until 1955, Bob served on Tulane’s civil engineering faculty. In 1955, Bob joined Boh Bros. Construction Co., and over the years rose to the positions of president and chairman of the board, where he guided this honorable and nationally respected firm into its second century. In 1955, Bob met his future wife, Katherine Hilton Sandoz, a 1956 graduate of Newcomb College. They were married on Oct. 27, 1956. Bob and Katherine had three children: two boys, Robert and Stephen, and a daughter, Elizabeth. All three are graduates of Tulane. The two sons joined Boh Bros., and the daughter followed a career in banking and investing. For 61 years, Bob was blessed with love and family. Bob was always loyal and dedicated to Tulane University, and his many accomplishments were recognized over the years by receiving the Outstanding Alumnus Award, by being inducted into the Engineering Hall of Fame, and by being awarded the Honorary Doctor of Engineering degree in 1996. Bob served as the chairman of the Tulane Board of Administrators from 1988 to 1993. In honor of his parents, Catherine and Henry Boh, Bob established the Boh Endowment Fund, which created the Catherine and Henry Boh Chair in Civil Engineering, the first endowed chair in the School of Engineering. Bob’s civic, professional and service activities, and the well-earned recognition that followed, were legendary. Bob enjoyed his reign in 1998 as Rex, king of Carnival, and was a lifetime fan of the New York Yankees. Bob lived a full and happy and productive life. He lived a life of service. He was a modest person. He was a gentleman and a scholar. He was a brilliant engineer. He was a good friend. He is a credit to Tulane University.


Tribute Robert Boh

—BOB BRUCE, Bob Boh’s classmate (Class of 1951) and Tulane emeritus professor of civil engineering.

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TULANE FUND Last year, donors to the new Tulane Fund for Undergraduate Education contributed more than



to impact the following areas:

Berger Family Lawn 48%



to S U STA I N I N G and E N H A N C I N G undergraduate programs


to programs that enriched the undergraduate experience, including CAREER SERVICES, ADVISING AND ACADEMIC MENTORING



Love and passion for Tulane University abound in the heart of Darryl Berger (L ’72). And now the immediate past chair of the Board of Tulane has made a major gift that will name the bustling green lawn at the heart of so many important experiences for Tulane students and alumni. “I think that green spaces and gathering spaces are always key to the beauty of the university campus, and at the heart of the student experience,” said Berger, a real estate developer and investor. “This central lawn is particularly important. It’s one of the loveliest open spaces on campus, and as far back as my childhood, it’s always been a place for all types of student activities, from social gatherings to play space and intramurals in a previous era, to celebrations and tailgating in the current era.” The Berger Family Lawn is a green space extending from McAlister Drive to Newcomb Place, in front of the Lavin-Bernick Center for University Life and the future site of The Commons. “As a giant in the hospitality industry, Darryl has always been a genius at understanding the creative connections between physical space and human interaction. The Berger Family Lawn will provide the backdrop for countless Tulane memories far into the future,” said Tulane President Mike Fitts. “We are deeply grateful to Darryl and Louellen for their enduring commitment to Tulane.” The Berger family gift is an essential element of The Commons project. (See “Olive & Blueprint,” p. 26.) “Gathering spaces are always key to the student experience, and The Commons will be a game-changer,” Berger said. “The marvelous new Commons will reinvent dining, gathering and social interaction.” Darryl Berger and his wife, Louellen, are parents to four children and grandparents to nine grandchildren. The Berger Family Lawn honors their entire family. “Family is the most important thing to Louellen and me, and we wanted to honor our family, including succeeding generations, and show our dedication to Tulane in a lasting way.” —Mary Elizabeth Lough


Above: Louellen and Darryl Berger are part of the driving force behind the newly named Berger Family Lawn, near the Lavin-Bernick Center. The lawn will be an essential part of The Commons.

GIVE GREEN CHALLENGE Be part of Tulane’s first-ever universitywide giving day! Go to givegreen.tulane.edu on April 18, 2018, to win challenge dollars for the schools and units you care about the most.


$10 Million Gift Creates Steven and Jann Paul Hall


“The greatest advances happen at the interface of scientific disciplines.” —Dr. Steve Paul Dr. Steve Paul was 17 years old when he started working in the laboratory of professor Merle Mizell, conducting basic science research in developmental biology and cancer. And it was that small, humble space in the Dinwiddie Hall basement where he had the opportunity to appreciate science under thoughtful mentorship—and even publish his first research paper—which inspired an illustrious scientific career. “I look back at those days and see the foundations for my own career, and I want to contribute to similar formative experiences of other students,” said Paul, president and CEO of Voyager Therapeutics, a clinical-stage gene therapy company, where he helps develop lifechanging gene therapies for central nervous system diseases. Paul is impressed “by the bright, curious and creative School of Science and Engineering students, and the student body deserves the best resources possible in order to realize their full potential.” Paul (A&S ’72, G ’75, M ’75) and his wife, Jann (SW ’73), are now creating a new space in which future Tulane scientists and engineers will be inspired to make groundbreaking discoveries. The Pauls have made a $10 million gift that will support the construction of a new School

of Science and Engineering building between Stanley Thomas Hall and Flower Hall on the uptown campus. The donation serves as a lead gift in a fundraising campaign for the building. Construction on the four-floor, 36,000square-foot Steven and Jann Paul Hall for Science and Engineering, which will include classrooms, labs and collaborative spaces for increased student and faculty interaction, is scheduled to begin by the end of 2019. Tulane President Mike Fitts praised the Pauls’ forward-looking support for a building that will significantly increase Tulane’s research and teaching infrastructure. “Dr. Paul is the embodiment of the intellectual entrepreneur. When I think about the vision for Tulane’s future, his career— located at the intersection of health, medicine, science and business—is the epitome of our direction. He understands the promise of Tulane and, in giving back, is helping to ensure we remain a home to innovative discovery and creative exploration.” Fitts added that the leadership and vision of Nick Altiero, who served as the School of Science and Engineering’s first dean from 2006 until stepping down last year, was instrumental in creating an environment that attracts such generous support.

Paul said this environment features the integration of life sciences and physical sciences with engineering, offering the best hope for breakthrough discoveries, treatments and cures. “If the last 50 years have taught us anything, it’s that the greatest advances happen at the interface of scientific disciplines.” He hopes that Paul Hall will allow future Tulane students to be as inspired by mentors as he was, naming among his greatest Tulane teachers Mizell (biology), Donald Gallant (psychiatry), Arnold Gerall (psychology) and Jeffrey Ellison (neuroscience). “Often faculty don’t realize what students will become and the specific role that they play in a student’s success,” he said. Before founding Voyager Therapeutics and Sage Therapeutics, both biotech companies based in Cambridge, Massachusetts, Paul spent 17 years at the Eli Lilly Research Laboratories, where he was head of research and development. A psychiatrist, Paul also was scientific director of the National Institute of Mental Health as well as a laboratory/ branch chief at the National Institutes of Health. —Mary Sparacello

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COLLABORATIVE TEAMWORK University Professor Walter Isaacson discusses the ingredients Tulane needs to foster a cradle of innovation and creativity at a lunch on the day of “The Big Reveal.”


A Bold Campaign

Tulane University launched “Only the Audacious, The campaign for an ever bolder Tulane,” on Dec. 8. The campaign, the most ambitious fundraising endeavor in Tulane’s 184 years with a goal of raising $1.3 billion, will support research, scholarships, faculty development and other initiatives. The kickoff events included a talk by University Professor Walter Isaacson, presentations that addressed the university’s academic scholarship by students, professors and President Mike Fitts, and a broad and growing sense of camaraderie and community among Tulane alumni and supporters. The day concluded in true New Orleans style with The Tipping Point concert at Tipitina’s.



Left: Campaign co-chairs, from left, Hunter and Catherine Pierson join President Mike Fitts, along with co-chairs Phyllis Taylor and Richard Yulman, at the campaign launch on Dec. 8. Catherine D. Pierson (G ’78, SW ’89) served as chair of the Board of Tulane University from 2003–2006 and chair of the University Healthcare System Governing Board from 2001–2003, and was the founding Chair of the Tulane Cancer Center Community Advisory Board. She is a member of the Paul Tulane Society, serves on the Executive Campaign Council and co-chaired, along with her husband, Hunter, a previous campaign for the university. She is also active on education and nonprofit boards around New Orleans. R. Hunter Pierson Jr. is president of Pierson Investments. He is a member of the Board of Tulane and other university advisory boards and a past member of the Tulane President’s Council. He and his wife, Catherine, co-chaired a previous campaign at Tulane. Pierson was inducted into the Paul Tulane Society in 2005 and received the Tulane Alumni Association’s 2009 Dermot McGlinchey Lifetime Achievement Award. Phyllis Miller Taylor (L ’66), the chairman and CEO of Taylor Energy Co., CEO of Endeavor Enterprises, and chairman and president of the Patrick F. Taylor Foundation, serves on the Board of Tulane. She is the namesake of The Phyllis M. Taylor Center for Social Innovation and Design Thinking at Tulane University, as well as a past member of many Tulane boards, including the Tulane Board of Governors and the President’s Council. In 2012, she was inducted into the Paul Tulane Society. Taylor is the recipient of many awards, including the 2011 Dermot McGlinchey Lifetime Achievement Award from Tulane. E. Richard Yulman is a philanthropist and mentor in the Miami area. Yulman has served as an active member of the Board of Tulane from 2005–2017, including numerous committees such as the 2013 Presidential Search Committee. He is a past member of Tulane’s Parents Council. In 2013, the Yulman family provided a major gift in support of Tulane’s new football stadium, which bears their name. Yulman was named an honorary alumnus in 2014; in 2017 he received the Dermot McGlinchey Lifetime Achievement Award. He is also a member of the Paul Tulane Society.


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AWARD WINNER Jesmyn Ward, an author and associate professor of English at Tulane University who has won two National Book Awards and was named a MacArthur Fellow in October 2017, appeared at “The Big Reveal” campaign kickoff event in December. English department chair Michael Kuczynski interviewed Ward; that day she also received the President’s Medal from President Mike Fitts.



Top row, from left: The Tipping Point concert featured an all-star lineup at Tipitina’s on Dec. 8; Ginny Wise, senior vice president for advancement at Tulane, Katy Yulman Williamson (NC ’05), and Tania Tetlow, senior vice president and chief of staff to President Fitts, enjoyed the atmosphere. Middle row, from left: Alumni Marlene Eskind Moses (NC ’72, SW ’73), Michael Field (A&S ’63), and Penny (NC ’69) and Jim (A&S ’69) Morrill were on hand for the festivities; performers Michael McDonald and Lisa Fischer (center) duet onstage. Bottom row, from left: Marta and Bill (E ’81, ’83) Marko, Don Peters (A&S ’81), and Jenny (NC ’83, B ’84) and Bob (B ’81, ’83) Kottler were among the Tipitina’s crowd for The Tipping Point concert that celebrated the campaign launch.

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



Spring Fever by Angus Lind I don’t envy students at this time of the year, but I empathize with them because I know what I battled when I was at Tulane—spring fever. It’s no secret—I lost most of those battles. How could you possibly win? You’re sitting in a classroom in a course you have to take. The professor is droning on about, well, I’m not sure, maybe something uplifting like Ode on a Grecian Urn—but it sure wasn’t drones. You look out a window where the sunbeams are shining through. The sky is blue, the trees and shrubs are all budded up, the flowers are blooming, birds are chirping, the grass is green, people are smiling, the sunglasses look cool—you get the drift. The most anticipated season of the year, spring comes at you from all directions. It is a visual and mental overload but a welcome one. Its beauty spawns thoughts of hope and romance or more candidly, as Robin Williams observed: “Nature’s way of saying, ‘Let’s party!’” Focus and concentration are beaten into submission. You start daydreaming. Spring fever sends you into fantasy land where there are no rules, no boundaries, no limitations— just fancy and illusion. Right now I could be back at Tulane, lying on the levee behind Carrollton and Leake avenues listening to music, tossing Frisbees. It was there every spring where I spent quality hours wondering about life’s mysteries.



Keeping focused is a student’s challenge in spring.


I’m trying to relive those moments, put my thoughts together. I’m at my computer staring at my screen saver and counting the butterflies I see. Those are beautiful creatures, butterflies. Then I think to myself, “Wait—I don’t have any butterflies on my screen!” That’s what spring fever will do to you. Dr. John Husband taught creative writing in Gibson Hall during my years at Tulane. That was a course this reluctant English major was actually interested in. I say reluctant because the journalism program I was in was dropped. So English became my default major. A smart man and good instructor, Husband was dialed into the spring fever syndrome. This was not his first rodeo. So it was a little puzzling but drew no complaints when one fine spring day he took his class outside and we sat under an oak tree. The Tulane campus was as beautiful back then as it is today. From the azaleas to the oaks, Mother Nature was and is hard at work—there’s no shortage of distractions. So—talk about leading the ducks to the wrong pond—it went from creative writing to creative unconditional surrender. Nobody paid attention to a word Husband said. I won’t say I didn’t have a game plan to battle spring fever because I did. Here’s the short version: Registration was much different back then than now. Since there were no computers and no internet, it was done manually, standing in lines to sign up for courses in what today is known as Avron B. Fogelman Arena in Devlin Fieldhouse, where basketball and volleyball are played. I did what any driven, ambitious, studious student would do. I did extensive research to discover courses where the professor had a history of not taking roll. Rationalization of my actions came easy, even when the game plan backfired. In the fall, I blamed any low grades on football parties. In the spring, well, obviously spring fever shouldered the responsibility. That’s my story, and I’m still sticking to it. Springtime has inspired poets and wouldbe bards for ages. National Poetry Month is just around the corner in April. So, the bards will be a-barding, and on my only personal negative note about spring, the pollen will be a-pollening and the noses will be a-running, including mine. So . . . Sinus headaches, set me free I don’t want no allergies. I don’t want no stuffy nose. Rather be slapped with a garden hose.

M A R C H 2 0 1 8 T U L A N E M AGA Z I N E

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