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Widener Magazine Volume 28 Number 02 Fall ’17

Freshmen Start Semester in Costa Rica 10 Renovations Restore The Castle to Its 19th Century Heyday 12


Widener alumni lead disaster responses and rebuilding efforts after catastrophes, page 4

TRAINING FOR THE UNEXPECTED Crises arrive without warning. Each year, Widener’s School of Nursing conducts a disaster simulation where students put their knowledge to the test and learn valuable lessons amid crisis. As a result, students gain the confidence, experience, and skills to manage the challenges that come with being everyday responders. Read the story about this year’s disaster simulation on page 9.

Photo by Ian MacGregor ’13


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Widener University One University Place Chester, PA 19013 Phone: 1-888-WIDENER Website:


Responding and Rebuilding after Disaster Strikes

Published by the Office of University Relations

The School of Nursing’s annual disaster simualtion trains students to respond to dire emergencies

A look at Widener alumni and faculty who provide disaster relief and help to rebuild after catastrophes 9

Disaster Simulation Prepares Nursing Students

Executive Editor: Linda Durant


Editor: Jeannine McKnight

Students studied abroad creating community and fostering friendships before beginning their first day of class

Designer: Melanie Franz


Class Notes Editor: Patty Votta

Summer 2017 Freshman Trip to Costa Rica

Renovations to The Castle Preserve Its History

Renovations restore The Castle, a familiar landmark on the Chester Campus, to its 19th century heyday

Contributing Writers: Mary Allen Kathleen Butler Charles Cooper Autumn Heisler ’15 Jennifer Kitchen ’11 Jessica Reyes


Homecoming & Reunion Weekend Highlights


On Campus


2017 Alumni Awards


Widener Athletics Hall of Fame

Photographers: Melanie Franz Kirsten Heinley ’17 Ian MacGregor ’13


Class Notes


Honor Roll of Donors


Elizabeth J. Hirschmann Football Field


Alumni Spotlight


The Back Page

Magazine Advisory Board: Mary Allen Kathleen Butler Denise Gifford Tiffany Kator Debbie Perreca Gregory Potter Dale Scalise-Smith Find us on Facebook at wideneruniversity


A NOTE FROM THE PRESIDENT As I write this note, those in Texas, earned. But equally impressive, more than Florida, the Caribbean Islands, Puerto 60 percent of Widener alumni surveyed Rico, and elsewhere are still reeling from reported that their work makes the world the impact of three terrible hurricanes. a better place. Only 13 of the 103 ranked Our campus is saddened by the colleges or universities had a higher rate. destruction that has impacted alumni, This statistic compliments Widener’s friends, and others, and we are motivated recent selection by as the to assist. This issue of the Widener Magazine university in Pennsylvania with the most shines a spotlight on members of our altruistic and civically minded students. university community who are making a Widener also ranked 16th nationally among difference in the lives of people impacted all colleges and universities on that list. by disasters. They are heroes like Loren Widener University is dedicated Minutoli ’03, who has used her civil to developing courageous leaders and engineering degree while working with engaged citizens who demonstrate FEMA after storms like Hurricane integrity, initiative, and collaboration. Our Katrina. They are heroes like Jon Cubukcu students don’t just acquire knowledge, they ’13, who works for the state of New Jersey grow into leaders who work successfully in on smarter engineering approaches to teams, have strong ethical principles, and rebuilding after storms. They are leaders use them to make difficult decisions. like Trustee Louis Rodriguez Jr. ’91 who is At Widener, we are committed to supporting Hurricane Maria victims in his providing transformational opportunities father’s hometown in Puerto Rico. in and out of the classroom. We work to They are also heroes like the students, faculty, Widener University is dedicated to and staff who developed a collective impact effort developing courageous leaders and in response to the most engaged citizens who demonstrate recent hurricanes—a model that brings integrity, initiative, and collaboration. together various initiatives to connect people and leverage resources. Rather prepare our students for better lives by than every student or student organization engaging them in creating a better world. acting independently, this coordinated The stories in this issue and our evidence approach seeks to instruct about of alumni success in achieving meaningful meaningful disaster relief and what is most and well-paying work demonstrate that needed. The work is being coordinated by our approach is working. There are many Gretchen Mielke, assistant dean for civic more examples; please share your story engagement. The students have elected to with us and keep up the great work! support All Hands Volunteers, which you can learn more about at These purposeful and determined students and alumni illustrate why Widener is again ranked among the Best Colleges in Pennsylvania by Salary Potential. PayScale put Julie E. Wollman, PhD Widener in the top 25 percent of the President more than 100 ranked colleges for salaries 3

WHEN DISASTER STRIKES Widener alumni lead disaster responses and rebuilding efforts after catastrophes BY JESSICA REYES Disasters have a way of bringing out the everyday heroes—the leaders among us all. At Widener University, students acquire the skills and courage to lead our nation’s responses to the most serious catastrophes. Meet four alumni who have accepted the call. Jon Cubukcu ‘13 Jon Cubukcu is no stranger to natural disasters—both because of his career and his life experience. The two overlapped in August of 2011 while he was studying civil engineering at Widener University. The heavy rains of Hurricane Irene battered New Jersey and caused the foundation of his family’s Springfield home to blow out. “It was terrible to see something you had in your family Cubukcu for 100 years washed away,” Cubukcu said. The hurricane—and the years of rebuilding that came after—left Cubukcu with a deep appreciation for how his studies at Widener could someday help reduce the chance that others would experience the same anguish. 4

“If I knew then what I now know, maybe I could have helped my family with my engineering background,” Cubukcu said. “It was a learning process.” Cubukcu graduated in 2013 and went to work that summer for FEMA as a hazard mitigation engineer for Region 2—an area covering New York, New Jersey, Puerto Rico, and the U.S. Virgin Islands. For years, his job was focused on Hurricane Sandy, the second costliest hurricane in U.S. history. Cubukcu was charged with using FEMA’s benefit-cost tool kit to analyze whether a mitigation project financially made sense under the Hazard Mitigation Grant Assistance program. The program provides funds to help communities implement hazard mitigation measures following major disasters. “I make sure every dollar spent is cost effective,” Cubukcu said. Take, for instance, when a beachfront home is destroyed by flooding from a hurricane. Does it financially make sense for the homeowners to rebuild or relocate? If they rebuild, should they elevate the home to avoid future flood losses? And, in the rebuilding, do they include a safe room where they can take cover from wind and debris? “You want to build stronger after a natural disaster,” he explained. In June of this year, Cubukcu accepted a similar position with the New Jersey Office of Emergency Management. He now works with multiple reimbursement programs and often travels across New Jersey to various mitigation projects.

“Getting this experience at my age is a blessing,” Cubukcu said. “I couldn’t have asked for anything more from either position, and Widener really helped me get to where I am today.” Joseph Viscuso ‘73 September 11, 2001, is a day etched in the minds of us all—but for Joseph Viscuso, it changed his engineering firm’s focus. On that tragic morning, Viscuso, a Widener engineering graduate who was then a partner at Viscuso the firm Vollmer Associates, LLP, boarded a plane at Philadelphia International Airport. He was traveling to Boston for a partners meeting later in the day. As the airplane idled before takeoff, word spread that a plane had hit one of the World Trade Center towers in New York City. It was an accident, everyone thought. But the travelers soon heard about the second strike. Viscuso worried about his partners—many of whom were flying to Boston from various airports nearby. He later learned his partners were safe, but September 11 set the engineering firm on a unique path of disaster recovery and rebuilding.


Most people were familiar with the iconic image of the towering buildings dotting the New York City skyline, but few knew of the engineering feat supporting the Twin Towers underground. Engineers had decades earlier constructed a deep seven-story basement—a so-called bathtub—for the World Trade Center site. The bathtub was ringed by slurry walls that kept water from the Hudson River out. Following the terror attack, a major concern was whether the slurry walls had been breached, since flooding of the bathtub could quickly derail rescue and recovery efforts. There was just one problem: “Nobody knew where the underground slurry walls were,” Viscuso explained. “If they started to bring debris and dirt out, the slurry walls would collapse, causing a domino effect on other buildings nearby.” Vollmer Associates, headquartered in New York City, was one of the first firms called to solve the dilemma. “We had a plan,” said Viscuso. “So from that day in September until March of 2002, our firm, along with the Port Authority and another firm, had surveyors on the ground 24/7 to monitor the walls.” Vollmer Associates, which was sold in 2007 to Stantec, also took on the decade-long task of designing a temporary and then eventually permanent West Side Highway—New York State Route 9A—after the highway was damaged in the attack.


Viscuso has given presentations on the construction of the Twin Towers and highway design work dozens of times to both Widener and other audiences. Today, Viscuso is the senior vice president and director of strategic growth at Pennoni and is an adjunct professor at Widener. “We know, as engineers, that when we see a disaster, whether it be Hurricane Irma or the Twin Towers, that all of the infrastructure will have to be checked and rebuilt,” Viscuso said. “That is what we do, and it is an all-hands-on-deck approach.” Loren Minutoli ‘03 The year was 2004, and Florida was experiencing one of its most active and destructive hurricane seasons. First came Hurricane Charley; then came Frances, Ivan, and Jeanne— leaving widespread destruction over five weeks. Loren Minutoli was safe at home in New Jersey. She had graduated from Widener with a BS in civil engineering a year earlier and was working at an engineering firm then-called Dewberry-Goodkind in Parsippany. One day, amid news of the back-to-back hurricanes, Minutoli received an email at work. It was a plea for civil engineers willing to deploy immediately to Florida. Minutoli didn’t hesitate. She packed her suitcase, left a note for her parents on the kitchen table, and was off. Once in Florida, she spent the next 10 months as a Federal Emergency

Management Agency (FEMA) contractor. She documented hurricane damage sustained by public and non-profit agencies and helped the agencies apply for badly-needed grant reimbursements. “After the first disaster in Florida, I had to decide, ‘Is this a one-time thing or is this a career?’” Minutoli recalled. “I realized this was a career that would allow me to help people, travel, and use my engineering education.” Minutoli spent the next decade traveling between communities ravaged by natural disasters. In total, she deployed 14 times. Much of her work was focused on the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina in Mississippi and Louisiana. In the two states, she worked on teams that gathered data used to confirm the path and wind speeds of the hurricane, as well as manage debris removal and demolition operations. “Everything was destroyed by Katrina,” Minutoli said. “To see the devastation, to see the power of the hurricane, to see people completely lose everything, I just wanted to do everything I could to help and return some normalcy to the citizens and the local government.” She had a similar feeling when she was deployed in 2008 to Galveston, Texas, after Hurricane Ike. She found that large disparities in wealth meant that many residents relied on donations from nonprofit food and clothing banks. Those agencies needed Minutoli’s help to receive the reimbursements that enabled them to continue operating.

“A lot of smaller agencies don’t have emergency funds set aside to prepare for catastrophic events. They need to put up the costs for damages like a destroyed roof, broken windows, or 18 inches of water,” Minutoli said. “I help assess the damages and then walk the agencies through the process of reimbursement.” After years of travel, with time spent in chilly Minnesota winters and flooded New York towns, Minutoli wanted to settle down. Florida seemed like a good fit. From 2012 to 2015, she worked as a contractor, leading efforts to restore Florida state beaches and recover money for state agencies following Tropical Storm Debby and Hurricane Isaac. In total, her team worked with applicants to capture $41.5 million for 38 beaches and 89 state agencies. She also closed out $250 million in damages to the Escambia County Utility Authority for Hurricane Ivan. Then, a year ago, Minutoli accepted a position with the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission in Tallahassee, the city she now calls home. She handles the agency’s finances related to the Deep Water Horizon Oil Spill, the largest ever marine oil spill that dumped 210 million gallons of oil into the Gulf of Mexico. While Minutoli still feels the desire to jump up and help when a natural disaster strikes, she is happy with the long-term, sustained work of restoring the Gulf of Mexico for Floridians. She knows her work matters to each community she serves.


Cathleen Evans ‘07 MSN, ‘16 PhD A mass shooting interrupts a country music concert in Las Vegas. A hurricane knocks out power and water to the island of Puerto Rico. Flooding leaves Texans stranded in their homes. Wild fires rage across California. During all of these recent tragedies, the country’s reaction is guided by FEMA’s National Response Framework—a playbook for disasters and emergencies. Nurses are a key component of that plan. “We have a body of knowledge that can help people,” said Cathleen Evans, a Widener School of Nursing assistant professor and graduate. “It’s about the people. Every person is someone’s mom, sister, aunt, father, brother, uncle. Everyone means something to somebody.” Evans herself has become part of that national response. On top of

Evans is frequently on call—ready to respond immediately to natural disasters. She is a member of local, state, and national medical teams. The work can vary from arranging flu vaccinations for her community in Hatboro, Pennsylvania, to staffing medical stations at large events, such as the Pope’s visit Evans (at far left) with nursing student trainees to Philadelphia in 2015 or when U.S. Congress holds joint sessions in herself and others for disasters or Washington, D.C. emergencies. This led her to a master’s Evans recently went to the Center in nursing at Widener University in for Domestic Preparedness in Anniston, 2007, followed by a PhD in 2016. One Alabama, for a week of training on selfof her key initiatives has been to spread contained breathing apparatus equipment awareness about the importance of “go kits.” These kits contain food, water, and emergency supplies people use to shelter in place or take with them when they evacuate themselves and their families during disasters. Find instructions to assemble your own go kit at “It sounds very simple, but it’s really hard to get people to do that,” she said. “To this day, it is still a rub in many of the preparedness programs.” Evans began teaching at Widener in May of 2014. Her experiences from the field help nursing students gain a and participated in a multi-agency mass deeper understanding of what they may casualty drill for chemical, biological, someday be called to do. In preparation radiological, and nuclear defense. for that day, she tries to give students “People think it is exciting that you hands-on experience—whether serving get to go travel for weeks,” she said. “It at the Philadelphia Rock ’n’ Roll Half is exciting, and the hard work makes a Marathon’s medical station or during real difference in people’s lives.” the annual disaster simulation at Evans’s nursing journey has always Widener’s Chester Campus. been grounded in volunteerism. In the “It’s about helping people,” Evans 1970s, she was a volunteer emergency said. “That is why we keep doing what medical technician. She then earned her we do.” W nursing diploma and worked for years as an emergency room nurse. She found that education could open more possibilities to prepare

“It’s about the people. Every person is someone's mom, sister, aunt,

father, brother, uncle. Everyone means something to somebody.” her duties at Widener, she volunteers on several local response teams, including Bucks County, Philadelphia and Montgomery County Medical Reserve Corps, and the Southeastern Pennsylvania Surge Medical Assistance Response Team. She also is a member of NJ-1 Disaster Medical Assistance Team (DMAT), which operates under the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services and provides rapid response medical care when local healthcare infrastructure is overcome by a disaster or emergency in the United States or its territories. 8

Disaster Simulation Prepares Nursing Students for the Worst “With so many recent natural disasters and emergencies in the United States, student nurses must be prepared at any moment,” said Dawn Ferry, director of the Center for Simulation and Computerized Testing. “Some students may never see a disaster, but others may face them in their daily lives. As nurses, it’s important they are prepared and know how to use their skills and training in any situation.” Nursing students at Widener benefit from the Founders Hall simulation labs, which are designed to provide clinical experiences for nursing students starting in the spring of sophomore year. The disaster simulation gives senior nursing students an opportunity to test their skills outside the simulation lab environment and understand the protocols in place for disasters. Approximately 130 seniors participated this year. At the start of the day, the nursing students attended a lecture. Unbeknownst to the students, the lecture was interrupted by an emergency happening outside. The students were assigned the role of bystander, student, observer, or nurse. They ran outside to 14th Street and found the injured in a chaotic scene. The victims were student actors who were aware of the simulation and wore full stage make-up and costuming. They lay seemingly unconscious on the concrete or yelled for help from inside the bus, as smoke billowed from the crash scene. The nurses had to assign the victims to triage units based on the severity of the injuries. The victims were then transported in ambulances to the hospital. Multiple agencies participated in the simulation, including the Chester Police Department, Chester Fire Department, Delaware County Mass Casualty Unit, and Crozer EMS. Senior nursing major Marie Smarsh said she benefited from the simulation, especially since she hopes to work in an emergency room or intensive care unit, where quick-thinking in intense situations is required. “This gave me insight on how it would work if there was a real disaster,” she said. “Everyone has to know their role and play their part, and as long as they do that, everything will be addressed.” 9

Freshmen Start Semester in Costa Rica Widener's first-ever freshman seminar abroad builds confidence By Jennifer Kitchen ’11



ost students start their college career moving into a residence hall. Not so for 17 Widener students who started by boarding a plane with three professors and flying to Costa Rica for a weeklong immersion in “Cultural Competence and Global Awareness.” The immersion experience was a freshman seminar course that allowed students from all majors the chance to study abroad before officially starting class on Main Campus. “It was the best experience of my life,” said Rhianna Cliver ’21. “It was the first time I traveled without knowing anyone, and it helped me open up so much more.” After taking 10 trips to Costa Rica with other classes, Biology Professor Itzick Vatnick New students bond during Widener's weeklong envisioned teaching a freshman seminar course freshman seminar course in Costa Rica. abroad. “I’ve taught this course for more than 15 years. It was time to do something different.” Visiting the high school was a memorable experiThe relationship Widener has with the community in ence for a number of Widener students, including Costa Rica made it the perfect place to develop a model Francesca Boschi ’21, a nursing major. “We started talkfor a global experience for the class of 2021. ing about politics in the English class, and one girl said The students focused on sustainability and commuher opinions of Americans changed altogether once she nity health globally, studying the Costa Rican environment. got to know us,” Boschi said. “Before I ever judge people, Biology Professor Bruce Grant and Nursing Assistant I know it’s important to talk with them first because it Professor Normajean Colby also taught the course. could change my view completely.” “Freshman seminar helps students gain a better underFor Cliver, a highlight was learning about sustainstanding of what college is like,” Vatnick said. “In this model, ability in a country like Costa Rica. “I learn better in a the students bonded together in a more natural way and hands-on environment, which is exactly what this was,” became completely integrated before returning to campus.” she said. “It’s easier to learn when you can see it hapThe immersion helped prepare Molly Deprospo ’21, a socipening.” This included walking through an abandoned ology/pre-physical therapy major, for her transition to college. village that was the aftermath of an earthquake. “It was “I immediately felt comfortable starting classes at Widener, upsetting, but it was eye opening seeing the remains of since I already had my own little community,” she said. the homes.” “The professors really care about us, and we experiThe students’ experiences made the trip a success enced everything together,” Abigail Szablowski ’21, a nursfor the faculty as well. ing major, agreed. “The students who started their college journey in Of the students attending the trip, half were nursing Costa Rica, ahead of freshman orientation, were more majors, as it is one of the only opportunities nursing stuconfident starting at Widener—both academically and dents have to study abroad for course credit. At Widener, it non-academically,” Colby said. “They had the opporis our vision to provide every student with the opportunity tunity to travel internationally with complete strangers to engage in a global experience. and return with lifelong friends. They are resourceful The students traveled to Costa Rica a week before and will be an asset to new students wishing to make moving onto campus. While there, the cohort stayed at friends and navigate college.” CARES 21, a villa that Widener purchased in 2016 to Cliver’s advice to her peers: “If you have the chance provide opportunities such as this for students. to go, go—wherever it may be. If not, you’ll regret it.” During the immersion experience, students visited susShe hopes to adhere to her own advice and continue to tainable farming sites, coffee farms, and a high school that seize other opportunities to travel abroad during her taught English. Students also learned how to improve their time at Widener. W time management skills and focused on ways to transition to life in college. 11

Renovations Restore The Castle to Its 19th Century Heyday By Jessica Reyes Long before the stone fortress at the corner of 14th and Potter Streets was a residence hall for sorority sisters, it was a family home filled with the pitter-patter of four children and the liveliness of Chester’s elite social scene. The house—rightly named The Castle—was home in the late 1800s and early 1900s to Richard Wetherill, a banker whose business partnerships made him one of the wealthiest men in Chester, and his wife, Ella L. Larkin, whose father was the first mayor of Chester. Known for entertaining, the couple would invite politicians and friends to their elaborate three-story stone home designed in the popular Romanesque Revival-style. Once inside, guests were most likely impressed by the fine details—an elaborate wood-carved staircase spiraling upwards, fireplaces in nearly every room, and first-floor ceiling murals depicting angels tucked between the clouds of heaven and pink flowers. The guests were wined and dined by the Wetherill’s servants, who passed between the carriage house and servants’ quarters via an underground tunnel, now sealed off, that was built to protect them from the rain and cold. “The Castle was looked upon as one of the nicest homes in Chester during that period,” said Widener University 12

Professor Emeritus and Folklorist Emeritus Dr. J. Joseph Edgette. “When it came to that home, they didn’t spare any money.” Widener University, which acquired The Castle in 1967 and uses it today as a residence hall for the Delta Phi Epsilon sorority, recently completed a two-year project to renovate the house and restore the character that made it so popular in the late 19th century. The project is the latest in the university’s ongoing efforts to provide all students with state-of-the-art facilities where they can make the most of their Widener experience, both in and out of the classroom. A historically accurate transformation Renovating a house over 130 years old is no easy task, especially when trying to mix modern necessities with old-time charm. Last spring, the Office of Residence Life sought feedback on the upcoming renovations from students living in The Castle. The students worked closely with staff in Residence Life and Operations to bring the project to fruition. At the helm of the project was Michael Gaffney, the university’s operations and emergency management administrator. He oversaw essential upgrades to the sprinkler, electrical,

and heating systems, had USB charging outlets installed in each bedroom, upgraded lighting to LED chandeliers for savings and sustainability, and replaced the driveway, sidewalks, and decking. When it came time for cosmetic changes, Gaffney made them as historically accurate as possible. He and a team worked around the clock this past summer to remove carpeting and refinish the original hardwood floors, railings, and wood staircase. The entire interior also got fresh paint, and walls were removed from the second and third floor hallways. “We wanted to bring the house back to the way it was when the Wetherill’s lived there,” Gaffney said. Robyn Holford, a friend of Widener, volunteered to rehabilitate the beautiful mural in the first floor bedroom of the home, leaving a portion on the ceiling and moving another portion to a glass frame hung on the wall of the sorority’s chapter room. By the time the sisters returned in mid-August, the rooms were ready for move in. Katie Sholder, a junior nursing major and vice president of recruitment for Delta Phi Epsilon, was shocked by the transformation. “It looks so classic,” Sholder said. “I’ve always loved The Castle, but now it feels like a real home.” A house steeped in Chester’s history The Castle sits on the western edge of Widener’s campus as a show of the prominence that once enveloped Chester during the height of its industrial era. The Wetherill family was central to the industrial success of the region and were considered pioneers of the time. Richard Wetherill was in business with his brother, Robert, producing engines that fueled ships and local industry. He also made his fortune in banking as president of the Chester National Bank. “If you needed money in Chester, you would probably have gone to see Richard Wetherill,” Edgette said. “He was very well admired in the city.”

Four years after marrying Larkin, Wetherill built The Castle for her, in approximately 1884. The property originally stretched three quarters of a block. The house was a miniature version of his brother Robert’s home, Greystone, which occupies a full city block five blocks away at 20th Street. The couple lived in The Castle with their four children, two of whom attended Widener when it was known as Pennsylvania Military College, according to Edgette. After Larkin and Wetherill died in 1929 and 1934, the home remained with the family until it was purchased in the 1950s by the Chester Knights of Columbus. Is Mrs. Wetherill still home? When students and staff think of campus hauntings, they usually picture The Manor, the red brick 19th century English country manor that sits across the street from The Castle. The Castle, however, has its own ghost tales, albeit a bit more ambiguous. Take, for instance, stories that Edgette has heard from students about Civil War soldiers wandering the house’s halls. There is one problem—the house was built decades after the war. Delta Phi Epsilon sisters occasionally hear stories about lovers who haunt The Castle, but current students have only witnessed an item drop unexpectedly or a cold spot in their bedrooms. They often just blame these unexplained incidents on Mrs. Wetherill. The renovations, they said, have turned The Castle into a place that once looked—and even felt—haunted into somewhere they now consider home. “In this house, I instantly get a feeling of sisterhood,” said Emma Hetrick, president of the sorority and a senior majoring in social work. “It is absolutely gorgeous.” W


Homecoming and Reunion Weekend 2017

Top row, from left: Alumni from the PMC era rekindled old friendships; the Office of Multicultural Affairs celebrated its 10th anniversary. Middle row, from left: Board of Trustees Chair Gen. John H. Tilelli Jr. ’63, ’96H, USA (ret.), and his wife, Elise, attended the Alumni Awards Dinner where he was awarded the Geoghegan Alumni Citizenship Award; PMC alumni enjoyed being paired with current ROTC students in a skills competition; Norm Guarinello ’67 joined with his classmates in celebrating their 50th reunion. At right: Homecoming is a time for traditions like the broom drill at halftime.


This page: It was a great day for football! The Pride defeated Lycoming 31-17. Widener Pride was strong as the team was cheered on to victory.



Widener Named a Center of Excellence in Nursing Education for the Second Time

Widener University Introduces the First Robotics Engineering Major in the Region Every aspect of the way we work and live has the potential to be impacted by robotics. The use of robotic systems is expanding at an accelerated pace into almost every industry, including aerospace, agriculture, electronics, health care, security, manufacturing, and transportation. Widener is proud to be the first in the region to offer an undergraduate robotics engineering major. In fact, Widener is one of less than 10 nationwide to offer this major. “Our robotics engineering degree will prepare students for a career on the cutting edge of technology in one of the most innovative regions in the United States,” said Dr. Fred Akl, dean of the School of Engineering. The overarching goal of robotics engineers is to create systems that can support missions that are dangerous or not suitable for humans—for example, rescue missions in disaster areas—or to perform tasks with speed and accuracy that are otherwise unachievable. “The School of Engineering is well positioned to introduce this new major. Our faculty teamed up with leaders from the VEX robotics community and hosted an Engineering Robotics Camp this past summer,” Akl said. The camp was an opportunity for high school students to learn about robotic systems and to develop their science, technology, engineering, and math skills. High school teachers agree that there is a need for a focus on robotics and technology education in higher education. “It’s an immensely growing field,” Akl said. “Job growth for robotics engineers is anticipated to rise rapidly to meet the demand to invent, research, design, manufacture, sell, and service robotic systems and components. Now open for enrollment, our program will help fill the increasing need for robotics engineers.” 16

The School of Nursing has again earned the National League for Nursing’s prestigious designation as a Center of Excellence in Nursing Education for 2017–2021. Widener University is one of only four schools to achieve the Center of Excellence designation for “Advancing the Science of Nursing Education” in 2017. The School of Nursing received its first designation as a Center of Excellence in 2013. This achievement is credited to the leadership of the School of Nursing faculty who have demonstrated a passionate commitment to pedagogical research and student engagement. They engage students through evidence-based interactive teaching, professional role modeling, active scholarship, and experiential learning. “It’s because of our faculty’s commitment to, first, supporting the advances in the science of nursing education and, second, exposing students to high-impact educational practices that our graduates are prepared to enhance the well-being of people around the world,” said Dr. Laura Dzurec, dean of the School of Nursing.

Widener is

1 of 4 Centers of Excellence in the nation for Advancing the Science of Nursing Education ~National League for Nursing


Research Beyond the Classroom One of the most memorable experiences of Sarah Townsend’s time at Widener was the opportunity to observe surgery and design a clinical solution as part of a course on biomedical devices. Townsend ’17 knew that choosing to study biomedical engineering would afford her hands-on learning opportunities, but she never imagined that it would involve teaming up with a nursing student to witness a trigger finger surgery in a hospital. “Going into a clinical setting and observing actual surgeries was such a cool experience. I’ll never forget it,” Townsend said. “We were able to observe procedures and then use our findings to make them more efficient and safer.” As part of her senior year, Townsend participated in a teambased design project that was driven by open-ended problems drawn from unmet needs identified by the students during clinical immersions at Delaware Orthopedic Specialists, Scheie Eye Institute, and Nemours/Alfred I. duPont Hospital for Children. Townsend is one of many students to have this type of experience at Widener, thanks to faculty like Dr. Anita Singh, assistant professor of biomedical engineering, who strive to create a hands-on learning environment. Having joined the Widener faculty in 2014, Singh secured two major grants from the National Institutes of Health (NIH) this year to support her research while also enhancing the learning experience by enabling students to make a direct impact on health care in America. Recently, the School of Engineering was awarded a multiyear academic research enhancement grant for $417,185 from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services for Singh’s research on neonatal brachial plexus palsy, a stretch injury during the birthing process that results in varying degrees of paralysis.

The grant is a part of the AREA (Academic Research Enhancement Award) Program to support meritorious research, expose students to hands-on research, and strengthen the research environment in schools. “This grant is a major accomplishment for the School of Engineering,” Singh said. “We will be on the forefront of research in this particular area, and there will be a number of opportunities for student involvement.” Shania Shaji ’17 worked on this project through the summer research program during her senior year. She presented at the National Biomedical Engineering Society annual meeting last fall and received a research award. Now as a graduate student, Shaji continues to do research with Singh to advance her career. The grant through the Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health & Human Development provides funding for Singh to conduct research through the summer of 2020 in collaboration with Hahnemann University Hospital and Shriners Hospitals for Children. Singh also created a biomedical device development course using funding from another NIH grant for $108,000 to improve multidisciplinary and interdisciplinary team-based training, which she received earlier this year. One of the most prestigious NIH grants, this education mechanism grant enabled Singh to provide an immersion experience that put engineering and nursing students together in the clinical setting to consider the needs for and construction of medical devices and technologies. “It was a great interdisciplinary working experience for our students,” Singh said. “They were able to work with each other to gain a better understanding of working with clinicians and users.” 17

The 2017 Alumni Awards The 2017 Alumni Awards Ceremony took place on October 13 at the Springfield Country Club. The event honors outstanding alumni, students, and friends of the university who have made exceptional contributions to Widener. Through their work, they have brought honor and distinction to the university. The John L. Geoghegan Student Citizenship Award is presented to a Widener student who has reflected well on the university through academic achievement, leadership capabilities, and community service. This year’s recipient is Samantha DeCapua ’17. A top student and accomplished athlete, DeCapua also excelled in the ROTC program. She was ranked 4th in the nation in a field of 5,508 cadets and held the highest rank of Cadet Battalion Commander. The John L. Geoghegan Alumni Citizenship Award recognizes leadership among our alumni and was awarded to General John H. Tilelli Jr. ’63, ’96H. General Tilelli retired in January 2000 from the U.S. Army after more than 30 years of highly distinguished service. He continues his contributions to Widener through his work on the Board of Trustees, currently serving as chair. He established the General and Mrs. John H. Tilelli Fellowship, which is awarded annually to select graduate students to conduct scholarly research through the Oskin Leadership Institute. The Alumni Service Award is given to leaders who have distinguished themselves through their service to the university, a specific college, or their profession where

their education at Widener or PMC was an integral key to their success. This year there were two recipients. The first recipient is Cynthia Sarnoski ’74, PhD. Sarnoski was senior vice president of Global Compliance and Quality Systems at Wyeth Pharmaceuticals. She serves on Widener’s Board of Trustees and is chair of the Widener Science Alumni Group. She established the Cynthia H. Sarnoski, PhD, Endowed Science Faculty Fellowship providing recipients with the resources to launch new and ground-breaking educational and research initiatives involving students. Capt. Thomas Chiomento Jr. ’65, USN (ret.), also received the Alumni Service Award. He earned his BA from Pennsylvania Military College. Chiomento was integral in the planning and preparation for the Class of 1965’s 50th class reunion. Chiomento’s tenacity and personal style sustained the reunion’s momentum and class connection. Since the reunion, Chiomento has supported other PMC reunions through daily phone calls, emails, and sometimes personal visits to fellow cadets and classmates. He also started a new homecoming tradition with a “Commemorative Challenge Coin” used for the Homecoming football game coin toss. His efforts have been instrumental in bringing PMC and Widener closer together. The R. Kelso Carter award is designated to an outstanding citizen who did not graduate from Widener but, through his or her acts and accomplishments, has brought honor to the university. This year’s recipient is Widener’s senior vice president for University Advancement, Linda S. Durant. Her role is

Widener Athletics 2017 Hall of Fame Inductees The energy in the room was more like a pep rally than an awards dinner. More than 250 friends, family, and teammates enthusiastically celebrated the third Widener Athletic Hall of Fame induction class at Springfield Country Club on Friday, October 13.

2017 Hall of Fame Inductees (L–R): Mike Williams ‘75—Men’s Track & Field; John Connor ’78, Co-Captain—Widener Football; Dennis James ’78—Men’s Basketball; Ken O’Brien ’75—Baseball, Football; Bill Manlove, Head Coach—Football; Dr. Gina Gonzalez Johnson ’95—Women’s Track & Field; Nicholas P. Trainer ’64, ’16H—Football, Basketball 18

THE INDUCTEES ARE: Nicholas P. Trainer ’64, ’16H excelled as a twosport athlete at Widener in both football and basketball. He was an All-Conference performer in football in 1963 and later worked as a Division I football replay official and is a former chairman of the Widener Board of Trustees.

pivotal to Widener’s success. She manages fundraising efforts, alumni engagement, government and external relations, and university relations. During the past decade, Durant has elevated Widener’s reputation among other institutions by serving on the faculty and as chair of numerous educational programs offered by CASE, the Council for Advancement and Support of Education. This year’s recipient of the Outstanding Alumna/us Award is Dr. Normajean Colby ’87, ’91, ’10. This award is presented to a graduate who has brought honor to the university in the most outstanding fashion, including personal and professional accomplishments, dedication to her community, and the utmost service as an individual and a leader. Professor Colby is a nurse educator with Widener’s School of Nursing. She is also the recipient of the Phi Kappa Phi Love of Learning Award and the Lindback Award for Excellence in Teaching.

Nominations are now open for the next Alumni Awards, which will be granted in 2019, marking the 50th anniversary of the awards. To learn more and submit a nomination, go to

Dennis James ’78 helped lead the Pioneers to the best four year stretch in men’s basketball history that included 87 wins, two All-America honors, and four trips to the NCAA Tournament, culminating in an appearance in the 1978 national championship game. A draftee of the Philadelphia 76ers, he was named to the MAC 100 Century Team in 2013. Mike Williams ’75 was Widener’s second individual national champion, winning the triple jump in 1975. He was a two-time All-American and a three-time All-MAC honoree in the triple jump throughout his career and would later be honored on the MAC 100 Track & Field Century Team. Ken O’Brien ’75 was the first two-time baseball All-American for the university. He was a second round draft pick of

2017 Alumni Award Recipients (L–R): Capt. Thomas Chiomento Jr. ’65; Gen. John H. Tilelli Jr. ’63, 96H; Normajean Colby ’87, ‘91, ‘10; Kelsey Powell ’18 accepting award for Samantha DeCapua; Linda S. Durant; Cynthia Sarnoski ’74

the Texas Rangers before playing two seasons in the Phillies minor league system. Also a football player, he was the Middle Atlantic Conference MVP in 1974 and was named to the MAC 100 Century Team in 2013. Gina Gonzalez ’95 claimed All-America honors in the 55-meter indoor hurdles in 1994 and the 100-meter outdoor hurdles and the outdoor long jump in 1995. She received an NCAA postgraduate scholarship in 1995 and was named to the MAC 100 Century Team in 2013. The 1977 football team won the school’s first team national championship. This group went 11-1 for the year and rolled through the regular season before winning the NCAA playoffs and the championship. Their last game included

a tense final six minutes with the opposing team, Wabash, getting within two points. Widener held on for a 39-36 victory, and the university’s first national title. Walker Carter, one of the stars of the 1977 team, passed away recently. Carter was a long-time PECO employee. PECO’s Senior Vice President and Chief Operating Officer Mike Innocenzo brought the emotional crowd to its feet when he announced that the company had established a scholarship in Walker Carter’s name. Anyone wishing to contribute to the scholarship should visit


CLASS NOTES Class of 1962

Michael Helpa, BS, chemical engineering. Mike and a group from his church participated in “Washing the Wall.” This wall washing is done weekly by various volunteer groups during the tourist season. Mike said it was a beautiful morning and a wonderful experience to see The Wall sparkle when the sun shone on it. Mike made sure to point out PMC alums Jack Geohegan and Buddy Stephenson to his group.

Class of 1963

met in 1959 up to the present, praising and bragging on our grandchildren and humbly recognizing how truly blessed by the Lord we have been for our 54 years of marriage. God’s speed to us all until we meet again and thanks to PMC for our cherished memories.”

Tilelli, and Al Nicola recently got together for a visit. They are pictured below at the Washington Monument.

Albert Nicola, BA, English. Bob Ferretti, General John

Class of 1967

Edward Marolda, BA, history. “The U.S. Naval Historical Foundation recently named Edward J. Marolda, PhD, as a recipient of the prestigious Commodore Dudley W. Knox Naval History Lifetime Achievement Award. The honor recognizes an individual for sustained effort over the course of a career in the promotion of U.S.

CLASS OF 1968 AT GETTYSBURG Front Row—Left to Right: Ken Byerly, Frank Dubay, Fred Moll, Al Peck, Bill Luckenbill, Steve Raho, Steve Ridzon, Bill Lewis, John Derr, Dennis Dixon, Rick Borton, Dick Bertolet, Bob Webster Back Row—Left to Right: Keith Kampert, John Peterson, Bill Bossert, Chuck Pendlyshok, John Browne, Blair Schupp, Byron Daniels, Jim Love, Ed Irwin, David Fiedler, Bob Humphreys, Rick Remash, Lewis Chipola, Tom Vossler, Bob Weaver, Don Keen, Ron Romonowicz


David McNulty, BA, English. Classmates Dave McNulty and John DiShaw had this to say about a recent gathering: “For ‘Auld Lang Syne’ (for the sake of old times) two old Pennsylvania Military College roommates, me and John Dishaw and our wives, Darla and Maryann, had a wonderful reunion luncheon at the Tuckahoe Inn in New Jersey. We talked about our PMC days from when we first 20

your class notes and photos three ways: 1. J  oin or log on to the Widener Pride Network at alumni. 2. E  -mail Patty Votta at pavotta@ 3. M ail to the Office of Development and Alumni Engagement, One University Place, Chester, PA 19013

GETTING READY TO FALL OUT FOR PT! Some PMC class of 1970 grads from the DE, NJ, and PA area met for lunch and discussed old times at Cugini Pizzeria in Woodbury. L to R: Joe Chiari, Mark Billen, Ron Hoehn, Ron Erale, Walt Locke, Gary Ferguson, Don Cooper, John Perrelli, Jack Kelly, and Bert Mazzacca.

CLASS NOTES naval history. Marolda, who earned MA and PhD degrees in history from Georgetown and George Washington Universities, served for 37 years in the Navy’s historical program, retiring in 2008 as the director of naval history (acting). He has authored, coauthored, or edited 15 works of naval history, with a focus on the Navy’s activities in Asia during the 20th century and the wars in Korea and Vietnam.”

Class of 1968

George Gannon, BS, management, was recently elected to the Delaware County Hall of Fame for Baseball.

Class of 1972

James VanSciver, BA, behavioral science. James wanted to let his fellow alums know what he’s been up to. The photo was taken after a recent can-can show he attended.

Class of 1983

Rosemary Cappello, BA, English. Rosemary had her watercolors accepted for a solo exhibition at the Legend Galleries, 230 N. 21st Street, Philadelphia. She has been painting since 1989 and is a self-taught painter. Rosemary also edits and publishes

Class of 1989

Philadelphia Poets, an annual literary journal of 175 pages, using the works of about 55 poets in each issue. William Mea, BS, accounting. Bill Mea is now Capital University’s new vice president for business and finance. Bill comes to Capital from The Cooper Union for the Advancement of Science and Art in New York. During his tenure at Cooper Union, Bill led all financial and administrative areas of the institution both as vice president for finance and administration and now in his current role as executive vice president for finance and administration. Bill also served as acting president of Cooper Union for 18 months. Bill led and managed in related administrative roles at Wagner College in New York and The University of the Arts and Philadelphia University, both in Philadelphia. He was a certified public accountant for 22 years; completed the Harvard Institutes for Higher Education Management Development Program; is active with higher educational professional organizations, including several exclusive to chief financial and business officers; and has served on several school and community non-profit boards.

John Campo, BA, history, was promoted in July to the rank of colonel in the U.S. Air Force. He currently holds the role of commander of the 113th Maintenance Group, District of Columbia Air National Guard. He is responsible for personnel in support of F-16C and C-40C maintenance operations. Col. Campo enlisted in the U.S. Army in 1991. He was commissioned in 1992 as a warrant officer and served on active duty in the Army for nine years flying the UH-1 Huey and AH-64 Apache helicopters. In 2001, Col. Campo received a direct commission to join the Air National Guard. After certifying as a pilot in the KC-135R/E, he participated in the NOBLE EAGLE, OIF/ OEF operations and went on to serve as the Northeast Tanker Taskforce deputy air-bridge commander for the New Jersey Air National Guard, before accepting a position in 2007 with the 201st Airlift Squadron at Joint Base Andrews, Maryland. Col. Campo completed a master’s degree in national security and strategic studies in 2016 from the U.S. Naval War College in Newport, Rhode Island. His wife, fellow Widener alum, René (Lillicrapp) Campo ’90, BS, management, is an adjunct assistant professor of business management at the University of Maryland and Anne Arundel Community College. They reside in the Annapolis, Maryland region with their son Jack.

Class of 2002

Islanda Finamore, BSW, social work, ‘05L, JD, works for the Delaware Department of Justice as a deputy attorney general. Finamore was promoted to head the Child Protection Unit (a statewide unit) in December 2016.

Class of 2011

Tiffany Walker, BSW, social work, launched Pathways Toward Peace (P2P) a NJ-based non-profit organization whose mission is to provide capacity building and awareness to faith-based and other community organizations about mental and emotional health and wellness. Most recently, Pathways Toward Peace launched its Training Institute. The Training Institute is a series of workshops that equips leaders of faith-based communities with the knowledge and skill set to identify mental health or emotional crises in order to appropriately refer their congregants for help and support. Pathways Toward Peace will continue

PayScale ranked

WIDENER among the top

25% nationally in salaries earned at mid-career


CLASS NOTES to grow and increase its ability to provide even more opportunities for communities to learn and become empowered and equipped to better face mental health challenges. The next Pathways Toward Peace training is scheduled for October 2017. For more information about how to support the organization or to schedule training, please contact info@

Class of 2013

Christopher Cicalese, MS, taxation and financial planning. Alloy Silverstein, a southern New Jersey accounting and advisory firm, announced the promotion of Christopher Cicalese, CPA, MSTFP, a

Medford, NJ, resident and senior accountant at the firm. Christopher has been promoted to manager.

Class of 2015

Maribeth Schreder LeBreton, DNP, received a Lancaster Catholic High School Alumni Citation Award for Outstanding Professional Achievement, the highest award given to an alumna/us. The award recognized Dr. LeBreton for her years of dedication to her nursing career, focusing on understanding each patient’s health literacy, which is the patient’s ability to understand the information needed to care for their own health. Dr. LeBreton is a nurse practitioner, working with an interprofessional team in an innovative clinic at Lancaster General Health/Penn Medicine. The team works with highrisk patients who have an increased use of healthcare

services. Her doctoral project with the assessment of health literacy and the use of teach-back education in this complex patient population provided positive outcomes. Dr. LeBreton has been instrumental in implementing a health literacy assessment across the Lancaster General Health Organization and is working with an interprofessional team to implement the teachback method of education across the organization. As she received this award, Dr. LeBreton was commended for her continued efforts to increase the health and wellbeing of the Lancaster County community.


Julia Durkin ‘13, BS, mechanical engineering, and Robert Watkins ‘12, BS, electrical engineering, were married on March 17, 2017, in Punta Cana, Dominican Republic. Julia is currently a structural analysis engineer at Boeing and Robert is a field service engineer at General Electric.

Widener’s School of Business Administration is AACSB ACCREDITED. Only 5% of schools worldwide hold this accreditation.

Michael Bonagura ’13, BS, hospitality management, and Alissa Keenan ’13, BS, nursing, were married on April 29, 2017. Alicia Maslar ’13, BA, anthropology and Joshua Koble ’13, BA, biology, were married on October 14, 2017, at the Philmont Country Club in Tremose, PA. 22


REGIONAL CHAPTER CONTACTS Philadelphia County, PA Jeff Flynn ’04 Delaware County, PA Jim Gentile ’77 Bucks & Montgomery Counties, PA Gregg Strom ’64 Chester County, PA Frank Pellegrini ’66 New Jersey Office of Development & Alumni Engagement Wilmington, DE Vera Kunkel ’78 Alaska Maureen Colon ’76 Atlanta, GA Morrie Spang ’62

In Memoriam

Leonard Cutler ’43, ’46 John Schartner ’43 Herman Thomas ’43 Lewis Hutton ’46 Owen Kertland ’48 Anthony Mack ’48 Charles Curtis ’49 Gordon Granger ’49 Edward Harris ’49 Charles Koehler ’49 William Lowry ’49 John Vosbigian ’49 Thor Bahrman ’50 John Covach ’50 Francisco Labarta ’50 Frederick Reel ’50

Ross Rhoads ’50 Thomas Riordan ’50 Walter Grant ’51 Edwin Jones ’51 John Kingston ’51 Richard Paganelli ’51 A. Testoni ’51 John Kleponis ’52 Charles Stevens ’52 Don Dickinson ’53 Joseph Howes ’53 Louis Pulos ’53 Paul Wise ’53 Alfred Grez ’54 Isadore Padula ’54 Joseph Babilya ’55 John Coulter ’55

Baltimore Office of Development & Alumni Engagement

FL—West Coast Office of Development & Alumni Engagement

California Sharon Carothers ’92

New England Kristin McJunkins ’92

Central PA Office of Development & Alumni Engagement

NYC / North Jersey Garren Pflueger ’94

Colorado Kate (Ferreira) Bauer ’14 District of Columbia Office of Development & Alumni Engagement FL—East Coast Tom Dougherty ’93 FL—Orlando Stephanie (Dudley) Walls ’11

S. Deakyne ’55 Burton Ploener ’55 Arthur Ryan ’56 Tennison Dong ’57 Paul Wilson ’57 Stephen Zelznick ’57 Frank Juliano ’58 Albert McFadden ’58 Gerald Peterson ’58 John Curtis ’59 Harold Guarino ’59 William Love ’59 Joel Campbell ’60 Richard Loranger ’60 John MacCausland ’60 Robert Stackman ’60 James Walker ’60

Northern Maryland Marcia Bowers ’85G Puerto Rico Dennis Lopez ’85 dennis.lopez@ Texas Gerry Gaeta ’77 Washington State Alex Poblete ’89

Albert Conser ’61, ’73 Ronald DiFelice ’61 Michael Errico ’61 Robert Burton ’62 Ross Cambareri ’62 John Carrington ’62 Warren Homan ’62 Joseph Mahoney ’62 Robert Shor ’62 Allen Brewster ’63, ’89 Danial Fortney ’63 Alexander Gillespie ’63 Mitchell Kuzban ’63 Lee Markel ’63 Carroll Nadig ’63 Emanuel Occipinti ’63 James Reynolds ’63 23


From left, Carl Wisneski’s daughter-in-law and son, Joyce and Tom Wisneski, son Jerry Wisneski, and widow Eloise Wisneski honor his memory in the PMC Museum during Homecoming 2017.

Dr. Carl Wisneski during his tenure at Widener University as director and assistant professor of audio-visual media.

The Passing of a Legend­—Dr. Carl Wisneski Long-time Pennsylvania Military College and Widener faculty member and administrator Dr. Carl Wisneski passed away on June 8, 2017, after a long illness. Wisneski came to PMC in 1955 as director of music and as faculty director of the PMC Band and Bugle Corps. “Carl was really a father figure to us,” Andy Fraser ’67, who played for Wisneski in the PMC Band, said. He recalled Wisneski as a religious family man, a fine musician and educator, and a sensitive leader. Fraser created a colorful commemorative photo poster featuring pictures of Wisneski that was displayed in Alumni Auditorium during homecoming this year. The Wisneski family attended a reception at the PMC Museum to see it and reminisce with alumni. “That was what he really loved doing—conducting the band and working with the cadets,” his widow, Eloise Wisneski, said. Wisneski grew up on a farm in the Pocono Mountains and studied music at Mansfield University, where he met his future wife. He graduated in May 1953 and enlisted in the Army that August. He served in France until June 1955 and began at PMC upon his discharge that year. “He was very caring and patient and kind,” Eloise Wisneski said. “He really took a personal interest in the students and cadets. He wasn’t much older than them at the time. The secretaries all thought he was a student and they would ask him to run errands for them, and he would.” While he may have had the face of a student in 1955, he had the musical talent and drive of a leader. Under Wisneski’s guidance, the decorated PMC Marching Band 24

became the top ROTC marching band in the nation in competition at the New York World’s Fair in 1965. Jerry McAteer, PMC band drum major in 1965, said, “Carl taught and counseled with gentle passion and gave cadets the freedom to lead.” The band reached its largest size in the 1960s, sometimes with as many as 80 men marching in formation. It produced two record albums in that decade. One included the famous Sousa march, “The Dauntless Battalion,” that Sousa wrote for PMC in 1923. Under his lead, the band played for former President Dwight D. Eisenhower when he visited PMC in 1963. Wisneski also directed the group for its performance before Gen. Creighton Abrams during a visit to PMC in 1965. Abrams went on to be chief of staff of the U.S. Army in the early 1970s. Wisneski also directed PMC’s Glee Club and taught general music courses. John Daniels ’67, a drum major, recalled Wisneski was open to cadet wishes that the band evolved from a strictly military precision band into a trick marching band, with colorful halftime shows like those performed at Philadelphia Eagles football games and at Boardwalk Bowls in Atlantic City. The PMC Band alumni honored Wisneski with a distinguished service citation plaque at homecoming 2002 for his many years of dedicated service to the band. Wisneski pursued a PhD in communications as PMC transitioned to Widener. He continued teaching and administered the media communications department until his retirement.

CLASS NOTES In Memoriam continued George Krummenacker ’64 Joseph Humphrey ’65 David Defries ’66 Robert Esposito ’66 Philip Girvin ’66 Edward Harkin ’66 James Smith ’66 James Walls ’66 Max Walton ’66 Robert Worrell ’66 Jan Zarkin ’66 Philip Wayland ’67 Charles Burdan ’68 Robert Ciunci ’68, ’78 Robert Helms ’68 Henry Hoffman ’68 Alan Jordan ’68 Richard Karagozian ’68 Peter Mathis ’68 Helen Nowak ’68 Ned Rogovoy ’68 Everitt Williams ’68 Charles Bunty ’69 James D’Archangelo ’69 Dennis Melnychuk ’69 C. Nedal ’70 Bruce Hotter ’71 Gregory Weckel ’71 Charles Kitselman ’73 Ernest Miekley ’73 Charles Otto ’73 Michael Burns ’74 James Sands ’74 Chester Czyzewski ’57 Yvonne Mackay ’75 John Francis ’76, ’87 William Hunchar ’76

Walker Carter ’78, ’87 Beatrice Clifford ’78 Rocco Borzillo ’79 William Gant ’79 Todd Hoover ’79 Anne Horne ’79 Janice Pearce ’79 Christina Pluta ’79 Bonni Shelp ’79, ’82 Stephan Wilson ’79 Catherine Colver ’80 Michele Fox-Handlin ’80 William Connor ’81 Joseph Rogan ’81 Carolyn Desmond ’82 Raymond Scott ’82 Paul Daly ’83 James Kelly ’83 Ella Mae McFarland ’83 Diane Porter ’83 Caryn Abdill ’84 William Fennimore ’84 Marie Ronayne ’84 Joseph Davi ’86 John Eckert ’86 William Hart ’86 Dwight Long ’86 Laurie Polleck ’86 Carl Webb ’86 James Yoder ’86 Katherine Lewis ’87 Karen Raymond ’87 Christopher Schwartz ’87 Neil Hart ’88 Karen Johnson ’88 Barbara Billington Funk ’89, ’90 Joseph Gray ’89 John Lombardo ’89

Peter Loughead ’89 Thomas Miller ’89 Jack Ribble ’89 Nicholas Rosato ’89 Sandra Dean ’90 Edward Doerman ’90 Todd McKee ’90 Denise Mixon ’90 Douglas Susan ’90 Lee Christianson ’91 Ronald Mattern ’92 William Walbrandt ’92 E. Harris ’93 Michael Burns ’94 Kenneth Goodman ’94 Maureen Avila ’95 Todd Cheesman ’95 Elizabeth Morelli ’95 Gwendolyn Terrell ’95 David Baumgardner ’96 Patricia Baxter ’97 Christine Fox ’97 Blasé Iaconelli ’97 Jacqueline Keller ’97, ’00 Alvin Dohl ’98 Michele Brosseau ’00 Mary McDonald ’00 Deborah Phipps ’00 Samuel Elbardissi ’01, ’06, ’13 Christine Hagman ’01 Maureen Travagline ’01 Susan DeRosa ’02 Kathleen Frame ’02 William Quillen ’02 Ronald Veasey ’02 Kelly Gordon ’03 Gary Marchalk ’05 David Liebhaber ’09

Nicholas Lamina ’10 Stephanie Heafner ’14 John Zackowski ’18 FRIENDS, FACULTY, & STAFF R. Balotti Albert Boscov Donald Bren Greg Cichocki Daralice DiSabatino Rocco DiTaranto Eleanore Dower Eileen Doyle Mary Louise Duffy Kirby Eisenhart Barbara Field Kenneth George Sholom Groesberg Isobel Jones Charles Kramaric Eugene Lang Louise Maletz Christopher Mascaro Nova Morgan Robert Myers Cheriyath Nath Richard Phillips Lewis Seaman Samuel Serata Donald Walsh James Ward Earl Warrington Herbert Watson Wayne Weldon Carl Wisneski Brian Zwan

Remembering Dr. Rocco DiTaranto Professor Rocco A. DiTaranto, who spent nearly half a century teaching in the engineering department of PMC/ Widener, died at his home in Springfield, Pa., on September 5, 2017. Dr. DiTaranto recognized his passion for engineering while earning his mechanical engineering degree at Drexel University. He went on to earn his MS in physics and PhD in engineering from the University of Pennsylvania. In addition to his teaching career, he was a consultant for many major corporations, including Boeing. It was through this connection that the longstanding relationship between Boeing and Widener’s engineering department was formed. Professor DiTaranto was instrumental in developing the graduate program in mechanical engineering.

Professor DiTaranto was revered by his students for his thorough and disciplined approach to the material he taught. Engineering Dean Fred Akl believes it was Dr. DiTaranto’s sincere dedication to the students that made him so memorable. Dean Akl stated, “Dr. DiTaranto was a true gentleman and a highly professional person who earned the deep respect of students and colleagues alike.” Many faculty admired him as a father figure, among them mechanical engineering professor Dr. Maria Slomaiana. She began working with Dr. DiTaranto in 1984 and recently celebrated his 91st birthday with him and his family. She said, “He is someone who I will always remember very warmly. He was such a great professor and a truly good man.” 25

Honor Roll 2016-2017

Honor Roll 2016-2017

This Honor Roll of Donors is presented with gratitude to all those who have given generous financial support to the university over the past fiscal year. We pay special tribute to members of Widener’s premier giving societies. The Widener Legacy Society is comprised of members who have made a gift to Widener through their will or estate plan. The President’s Council represents those generous donors who gave at least $2,500 in the previous year. The Lifetime Giving Society honors those who have made cumulative gifts from $100,000 to a million dollars or more. For a full listing of our Honor Roll of Donors, visit



Current Widener University Trustee



Lifetime Giving Society Members

Lifetime Giving Societies recognize exceptional cumulative giving to the university. Individuals or organizations can earn membership into four societies, each honoring their level of philanthropy. The Old Main Guild

Old Main, a landmark since 1868, is a reminder of the rich tradition and history of Widener. Cumulative Gifts of $1,000,000 and Greater Individuals Paul Anderson, PsyD ’97 & Melissa Neubauer Anderson, PsyD ’95 Thomas H. Bown II ’67+ & Bonnie Bown^ Edith Robb Dixon ’73H James Hirschmann III ’82+ & Laura Hirschmann^ Ralph Muller ’62 Joseph & Jeanette Neubauer David ’64, ’07H+ & JoEllen Oskin^ Grace Sevier Lincoln ’69, ’73^ George Strawbridge Jr. ’82H^ CAPT Robert Taishoff, JAGC, USN (Ret.) ’89L Richard ’09H+ & Lily Tan Organizations ARAMARK Corporation The Bank of America Charitable Foundation, Inc. E.I. du Pont de Nemours and Company Longwood Foundation, Inc. The Maguire Foundation The Bernard Osher Foundation The Pew Charitable Trusts Quick Charitable Trust Foundation Ethel Sergeant Clark Smith Memorial Fund W.W. Smith Charitable Trust Taishoff Family Foundation, Inc. Taylor Memorial Arboretum Ruby R. Vale Foundation Widener Memorial Foundation

The Hyatt League

The Hyatt League was named to honor the significant place the Hyatt family plays in the institution’s history. In total, the Hyatt family held leadership positions with Widener spanning nearly a century. Cumulative Gifts of $500,000 to $999,999 Individuals Paul ’79, ’14H+ & Caroline Beideman Alexander & Ann Bratic Robert Crompton ’87 George Miller Jr., Esq. ’81L & Debra Miller Cynthia Sarnoski, PhD ’74+^ Nicholas P. Trainer ’64+^, ’16H Diana Wister Peter ’72, ’77+ & Alison Zacharkiw^


Trustees’ Loyalty Society

Organizations The Boeing Company Independence Blue Cross Foundation Kimberly-Clark Corporation The Charlotte W. Newcombe Foundation PECO Prickett, Jones & Elliott, P.A. Margaret Dorrance Strawbridge Foundation U.S. Soccer Foundation

The MacMorland League

Major General Edward MacMorland, a distinguished military officer with experience in administrative work, served as president of PMC from 1954 to 1959. Cumulative Gifts of $250,000 to $499,999 Individuals Alfred ’57 & Armineh Aysseh Richard ’62 & Susan Elling Bergeman^ John & Carol Durham Joseph ’55 & Charlotte Giordano^ George ’66 & Mary Graner^ Joseph ’55 & Carol Rosetti Timothy Speiss CPA ’83, ’89^ & Judite Speiss Walter Strine Jr. Esq. & Alice Washco Strine, Esq. ’92L Brian Tierney, Esq. ’87L+ & Maud Tierney Gen. John Tilelli Jr., USA (Ret.) ’63, ’96H+ & Elise Tilelli^ Vito ’61+ & Mary Louise Verni Organizations George I. Alden Trust Barra Foundation, Inc. Brian Communications Philadelphia Coca-Cola Bottling Co. Connelly Foundation Exelon Foundation KPMG LLP The J. Willard and Alice S. Marriott Foundation The Mutual Fire Foundation Inc. PNC Bank Sartomer USA, LLC Nathan Speare Foundation Young Foundation

The Moll League

Dr. Clarence Moll was a new president for a new era, serving from 1959 to 1981. Significant changes occurred during this era, and because of Dr. Moll’s resolution, strength of character, and optimism, those changes secured Widener’s future. Cumulative Gifts of $100,000 to $249,999 Individuals Anonymous William Anderson Edward ’68 & Patricia Baxter^ Frances Biddle Russell ’57+ & Mary Anne Bragg^ Anthony Britton ’82+ July 1, 2016–June 30, 2017

Ronald A. Brown Jr., Esq. ’90L Robert J. ’92H & Judith G. ’01H Bruce^ Samuel & Patricia Cimino Alan ’82 & Jacqueline Criswell Michael DeFino, Esq. ’75L+ & Valerie DeFino John ’63 & Maryann Speck Dishaw^ Sebastian Faro MD, PhD ’62 & Sharon Faro^ Joel Feller, Esq. ’93L & Kim Feller Andrew Field ’77^ Jeanne Gelman^ David F. & Constance B. Girard-diCarlo John M. Guinan ’70^ H. Edward ’84 & Ellen Hanway James ’13H & Mary Harris Richard & Eileen Herrmann Eldridge Johnson II ’43 & Betty Johnson Jane Laffend ’70 Gerry & Marguerite Lenfest Clotilda Mack ’85 James Mack III ’85+ & Debra Kurucz^ Christopher Mazza & Caroline Bratic Mazza ’11L Rosalinda McWilliams Kenneth Miller ’92 & Nancy Miller, Esq. ’88, ’92L Bruce Monroe, Esq. ’96L & Elizabeth Monroe Sam ’72 & Jean Paddison^ Frank Pellegrini CPA ’66 & Maureen Pellegrini^ Thomas Sager, Esq.+ & Nancy Sager Robert Schaal ’76 John Schmutz, Esq.+ Ronald Stead, PhD+ & Rita Stead Cyrus Tang ’54 Ken Butera & Karol Wasylyshyn, PsyD ’82+^ Stephen ’77, ’08H+ & Pamela Wynne Organizations American Competitiveness Institute ARAMARK Higher Education Citizens Charitable Foundation COFCO Office Furnishings Commonfund E. Wallace Chadwick Memorial Fund Exelon Corporation Historic XII October Lodge #486 of Chester, PA HSC Builders & Construction Managers Laffey-McHugh Foundation Morris James LLP Morris, Nichols, Arsht & Tunnell LLP Pachulski Stang Ziehl & Jones LLP Philadelphia Foundation Philadelphia Union TD Bank TD Charitable Foundation Thayer Corporation United Parcel Service Welfare Foundation, Inc. Young Conaway Stargatt & Taylor, LLP

Annual Giving 2016-17 President’s Council Members Chairman’s Forum

Annual Gifts of $25,000 and Greater Individuals Alexander & Ann Bratic Ronald A. Brown Jr., Esq. ’90L Samuel & Patricia Cimino Alan ’82 & Jacqueline Criswell Joel Feller, Esq. ’93L & Kim Feller George ’66 & Mary Graner^ +

Current Widener University Trustee




James Hirschmann III ’82+ & Laura Hirschmann^ Clotilda Mack ’85 Christopher Mazza & Caroline Bratic Mazza ’11L George Miller Jr., Esq. ’81L & Debra Miller David ’64, ’07H+ & JoEllen Oskin^ Cynthia Sarnoski, PhD ’74+^ Timothy Speiss CPA ’83, ’89^ & Judite Speiss Richard ’09H+ & Lily Tan

Project Pericles, Inc. Rita & Frank Castagna Family Foundation ROE Fabricators Inc. Taylor Memorial Arboretum TD Bank TD Charitable Foundation The Verni Foundation The Veterans Consortium Pro Bono Program

Organizations American Competitiveness Institute ARAMARK Higher Education Barra Foundation, Inc. Philadelphia Coca-Cola Bottling Co. Commonfund Crozer Keystone Health Systems Crozer-Keystone Community Foundation Historic XII October Lodge #486 of Chester, PA The Maguire Foundation The Mutual Fire Foundation Inc. The Charlotte W. Newcombe Foundation Pennsylvania IOLTA The Pew Charitable Trusts Philadelphia Union W.W. Smith Charitable Trust U.S. Soccer Foundation

Trustees’ Society

Dome Society

Annual Gifts of $10,000 to $24,999 Individuals Paul ’79, ’14H+ & Caroline Beideman Thomas H. Bown II ’67+ & Bonnie Bown^ Anthony Britton ’82+ Frank ’50 & Rita Castagna^ Barbara Chamberlain, PhD ’07+ William & Laura Conrow Joseph ’55 & Charlotte Giordano^ George ’92 & Nancy Hassel^ Mr. and Mrs. Charles Kaufmann III A. Bernard & Lynn Kelly James Mack III ’85+ & Debra Kurucz^ Bruce Monroe, Esq. ’96L & Elizabeth Monroe Michael ’91, ’99 & Sarah Mulhern Patrick ’91, ’92 & Susan O’Connell Savas & Mary Elizabeth Özatalay^ Brett Roe ’92 Thomas Sager, Esq.+ & Nancy Sager Ronald Stead, PhD+ & Rita Stead Gen. John Tilelli Jr., USA (Ret.) ’63, ’96H+ & Elise Tilelli^ Carlo Toscano CPA ’85 & Judith Toscano^ Nicholas P. Trainer ’64+^, ’16H Vito ’61+ & Mary Louise Verni Douglas Wolfberg, Esq. ’96L+ Julie E. Wollman+ & Dan King Organizations APL Tournaments, LLC ARAMARK Corporation Banfi Vintners Foundation The Capital Grille Cornelia Cogswell Rossi Foundation, Inc. E. Wallace Chadwick Memorial Fund First State Fund at the Delaware Community Foundation The Salvatore Giordano Foundation, Inc. The Jonas Center for Nursing Excellence Morris James LLP Office Depot Pacific Millennium Holdings Corporation Page, Wolfberg & Wirth, LLC Pennsylvania Humanities Council

Trustees’ Loyalty Society

Annual Gifts of $5,000 to $9,999 Individuals Anonymous Philip Anderson III ’70 & Ruth Zowader^ Edward ’68 & Patricia Baxter^ Richard ’62 & Susan Elling Bergeman^ Michael ’82 & Marietta Mosco ’80 Borinski^ Jeffrey ’93 & Lisa Bowen Marc & Antoinette Brodkin Edward ’80 & Kathleen Callan^ David & Joan Petersen ’76 Chalikian Hon. Ida Chen Donald Daley ’87^ Thomas Dekleva ’09L Michael Marquardt & Claire DeMatteis, Esq. ’92L+ Joseph Gelormini ’14 & Robin Dole Sebastian Faro MD, PhD ’62 & Sharon Faro^ James J. Hargadon ’75+ & Elizabeth Hargadon^ Hon. Randy Holland ’01H & Dr. Ilona Holland Jennifer Jensen Henry Justi Howard Kastner Jr. ’64 & Susan Kastner^ Jane Laffend ’70 Samuel Landy, Esq. ’85L & Laurie Landy Philip ’76, ’04H & Judy Martelli Richard Ridgway ’89^ James & Suzanne Sears+ Donald ’91 & Amy Smith Rodney Smolla, Esq. & Anna Smolla Rand Spear, Esq. ’83L & Laura Spear James H. Stevenson PMC ’62 George Strawbridge Jr. ’82H^ Brian Tierney, Esq. ’87L+ & Maud Tierney Kathleen McConville Tracy ’71 Thomas Trala Jr. ’88 & Melissa Trala James & Kendra Viner John Wetzel, Esq. ’75L & Donna Wetzel Organizations The Baker Hostetler Foundation Cancer Treatment Centers of America Comcast Corporation Conewago Enterprises, Inc. Delaware State Bar Association Multi Cultural Judges & Lawyers Section Eastern Pennsylvania Youth Soccer Association HSC Builders & Construction Managers Justi Group Inc. KeyBank National Association The Lenore and Howard Klein Foundation Inc. KPMG LLP Smith Family Foundation Spear, Greenfield, Richman & Weitz, P.C. Swiss Farms Stores UMH Properties, Inc. UPS Foundation Robert Stephen Weimann Endeavor Fund

July 1, 2016–June 30, 2017


John Bullock Society

Annual Gifts of $2,500 to $4,999 Individuals Michael ’64 & Lynn Albarell Dale ’90L & Barbara Trevisan ’91L Ardizzone Esqs. Joseph & Catherine Baker Susan Turley Bedford ’78 Jonathan Bigley, Esq. ’95L Marcia & David Bolton Sidney & Sandra Brown Christopher Calabrese ’86 Anthony Capozzoli ’96 John Carroll III, Esq. ’81L & Barbara Carroll Michael & Kristy Cassano Michael DeFino, Esq. ’75L+ & Valerie DeFino Raymond Duda ’77^ Linda Durant & Timothy Sullivan, EdD Christopher ’78 & Jennifer Eni^ Thomas ’76 & Bette Molino ’71, ’84 Ferrill Cary Flitter, Esq. ’81L & Nancy Flitter George Fox ’64^ Michele Franco ’59^ William ’73 & Ingrid Fryberger Jayati Ghosh, PhD & Sibdas Ghosh, PhD Robert Gober DO ’79L & Karen Gober Gary Gremminger, Esq. ’77, ’83L Joseph Hargadon, PhD ’80, ’82^ Craig ’86 & Susan Sobul ’86 Hennessey David & Alexis Clay ’87 Hollander^ John ’63 & Ruth Huber^ Bret Keisling, Esq. ’05L Michael ’82 & Bonnie Kernicky Antoinette Leatherberry+ Hon. Alan Levin ’80L & Ellen Levin Marc Liciardello CFM ’96, ’03 James McCracken ’87 & Deborah Kandrak ’89 McCracken, Esq.^ Eugene McGurk Jr., Esq. ’78L+ Kenneth Miller ’92 & Nancy Miller, Esq. ’88, ’92L Jonathan ’80 & Robin Moll^ Jeffrey Nyikos ’93 Luke ’93 & Meghan O’Boyle Brinton Osborne Frank Pellegrini CPA ’66 & Maureen Pellegrini^ Miguel, MBA ’99, ’14+ & Serene Peña Anthony Pontello Sr. ’61, ’70 & Barbara Pontello^ Maurice Prout, PhD Nicholas Pulos ’86 & Catherine Pulos CPA ’84+ R. Robert Rasmussen II ’73^ Peter Rohana Jr., Esq. ’66 & Joanne Rohana^ Robert ’91, ’00 & Colleen Cahill ’92, ’03 Samuel Nancy Sarcione John Schmutz, Esq.+ Paula Silver, PhD Mary Ann Skehan ’81, ’88, ’04^ Min Suh, Esq. ’95L+ Richard Umbrecht ’80^ Frances Weaver Stephen Wilhite^ Brett Wiltsey, Esq. ’97 Organizations Albarell Family Charitable Foundation Associazione Regionale Abruzzese Delco AT&T The Boeing Company The Bridge Educational Foundation Capozzoli Catering Chester City United Conicelli Toyota of Springfield David Dodge Chrysler Jeep Ram DeFino Law Associates +

Current Widener University Trustee





Dilworth Paxson LLP DLA Piper US LLP Eckert Seamans Cherin & Mellott, LLC Exelon Corporation Franklin Mint Federal Credit Union Host Hotels & Resorts, Inc. KDI Office Technology LBC Credit Partners Liberty Mutual Insurance Group The Christian R. & Mary F. Lindback Foundation Marshall, Dennehey, Warner, Coleman & Goggin, P.C. Murphy Ford-Lincoln-Mercury On Campus Marketing, LLC PT Network, LLC Richards, Layton & Finger, P.A. Sartomer BU, Arkema Inc. SHFM Foundation Sons of Ben Sparks Entertainment, LLC United Nations Development Programme The Vanguard Group Foundation

Matching Gift Companies

Aetna Foundation, Inc. Ameriprise Financial ARAMARK Corporation Bank of America Benevity The Boeing Company The Brink’s Company Campbell Soup Company Chevron Corporation CNA Insurance Company ConocoPhillips Company Constellation NewEnergy, Inc. Deloitte Foundation The Delta Air Lines Foundation Doris Duke Charitable Foundation Ernst & Young Exelon Corporation FICO FS Investments General Accident Insurance Co. The Hershey Company Hewlett-Packard Company IBM Johnson & Johnson W. K. Kellogg Foundation Kimberly-Clark Corporation KPMG LLP Lockheed Martin Corporation Merck & Company, Inc. Motorola Mobility Foundation New York Life Northrop Grumman Foundation Pfizer Incorporated PNC Bank PSE&G Sanofi-Aventis Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom LLP and Affiliates USAA Community Affairs D-3-E The Vanguard Group Foundation Verizon Foundation Wells Fargo Western Asset Management Company Willis Towers Watson Xerox Corporation

Trustees’ Loyalty Society

Widener Legacy Society

The Widener Legacy Society recognizes those loyal supporters who have made a gift to Widener through their will or estate plans. Anonymous Joseph Aceto Esq. ‘00L Gisele Bathish Paul ‘79, ‘14H+ & Caroline Beideman Richard ‘62 & Susan Elling Bergeman^ Hon. Robert Blasi ‘75L & Alice Blasi Donald Boyd Esq. ‘83, ‘94L^ Virginia Brabender, PhD & Arthur Weisfeld^ Arthur Bruaw Jr. ‘55^ Robert ‘68 & Linda Bugden Louis & Candice Caporale L. Luke Cellini MD ‘59 & Edna Cellini^ Eric & Ruth Chung Francis Clifford Esq. ‘76L Michael DeFino Esq. ‘75L+ & Valerie DeFino Catherine DeHart ‘10 Linda Durant & Timothy Sullivan, EdD Leroy ‘69 & Debra Eaton Charles Ernst III ‘67 Gerald Gaeta, JD ‘77 & Amy Gaeta Dwight ‘64 & Margaret Galda Ann Geisheimer Esq. ‘01L James Gentile DDS ‘77 & MaryRose Gentile^ George ‘66 & Mary Graner^ J. Pitale & Antoinette Griffith ‘95 Barton A. Haines H. Edward ‘84 & Ellen Hanway Christina Harman^ Henry Hattman III ‘64 Selma Hayman Esq. ‘86L Austin Hepburn Sr. David & Priscilla ‘96 Hooper Cecilia Hrubovcak Christopher Hubbuch ‘63^ Rocco Imperatrice III Esq. ‘80L Christen Conaway Jones ‘11 Florence Kassab Thomas ‘51 & Ruth Kauffman^ Robert ‘70, ‘75 & Janet King Chalmer Kirkbride Jr. ‘63 William ‘68, ‘94H & Kathleen Valenzi Knaus^ Vera Kunkel ‘78 Norman ‘67 & Sonja Lantz^ C. Blair Law ‘54 & Mary Law Carole Leigh Carl Lung Jr. ‘60^ Anne Madden ‘90 Donald Matusow Esq. & Linda Matusow James ‘92 & Sandra McCarthy James McCracken ‘87 & Deborah Kandrak ‘89 McCracken Esq.^ Eugene McGurk Jr. Esq. ‘78L+ Rosalinda McWilliams Hon. Vincent Melchiorre ‘83L & Joanna Melchiorre Kenneth Miller ‘92 & Nancy Miller Esq. ‘88, ‘92L Stephen ‘65 & Laurie Mischo Gopalakrishna & Saroja Nadig Jeffrey & Linda Needleman Charles Nippert, PhD & Carolyn Nippert^ Hon. John O’Grady Jr. ‘77L Marye O’Reilly-Knapp, PhD ‘92 Robert Patterson ‘73, ‘77, ‘85^ Karen Pedano Helen Read ‘63^ Judith Rehm ‘86, ‘98^ Peter Rohana Jr. Esq. ‘66 & Joanne Rohana^ Michael & Joan Rosko Bernard ‘52 & Tema Roth^ Elaine Samans, PhD Anthony Santoro Esq. & Pauline Santoro July 1, 2016–June 30, 2017

Grace Sevier Lincoln ‘69, ‘73^ George ‘62 & Louretta Shaffer J. Maurice Spang ‘62^ Timothy Speiss CPA ‘83, ‘89^ Nancy Stanford Esq. ‘03L Paul Stein Jr. ‘66 & Marjorie Stein Linda Suter ‘83^ Nicholas P. Trainer ‘64+^ Lillie Tyler ‘03 John Wetzel Esq. ‘75L & Donna Wetzel Christie Willis ‘04 Robert Wright, PhD Stephen ‘77, ‘08H+ & Pamela Wynne

Kathleen McNicholas MD, JD ‘06L, ‘10L Patricia Curtin MD Connor McVey ‘20 Eric MacDonald ‘88, ‘04 Cara Phillips ‘17L Jonathan Beckage Professor Thomas J. Reed Michael Newbold Jr. & Marion Rothbart Newbold Esq. ‘85L Gladyce F. Rubin Arlene Rubin Esq. ‘88L Joseph Santarone, Jr. Esq. ‘85L Colleen Bannon Esq.

Tribute Gifts

Gifts received in honor of

Amanda Sharp ‘19 Marna Schwartz

Professor Ellen Boyda ‘97 David & Joan Petersen ‘76 Chalikian Elizabeth W. Bayley, PhD^

Beth H. Steinberg Esq. ‘13L Richard & Shari Steinberg

Professor John Culhane Jeffrey O’Hara Thomas Dekleva, PhD Esq. ‘09L Baker Hostetler Foundation KeyBank National Association

Paul Szklarski ‘86 Steve Kilpatrick

Gifts received in memory of Lt. Robert Aldrich ‘69 James ‘69 & Mary Pherson^

Jay Ginsburg Esq. ‘88L Alexander Ginsburg Esq. ‘10L

Dean Alfred Avins (Ret.) Chief Petty Officer Gregory Jacobs ‘77L

Brendan Grady Margaret Grady RN, BSN Martin Molloy

Alexander F. Barbieri Alexis Barbieri Esq. ‘82L

James T. Harris III ‘13H & Mary C. Harris Lou Anne Bulik Shawn & Cheryl Fitzgerald

Edward T. Bradley ‘60 Kimberley Bradley & Robert Schleicher

Chara H Kramer ‘14 Alan & Dale Kramer

Dr. Alonzo Cavin Tiffany Jones, DEd ‘14

Professor Ismail Kul Yvonne Antonucci Loyd Bastin Krishna Bhat Mark Bradley Marc & Antoinette Brodkin Larry ‘87 & Vicki Brown Donna Callaghan, PhD ‘00 Annalisa Castaldo ‘14 Normajean Colby, PhD ‘87, ‘91, ‘10 David Coughlin Justin DiAngelo, PhD Stuart Eimer Bruce R. New & Virginia ‘91 Focht New^ Ilene Lieberman Andrea Martin Donna Weaver McCloskey ‘92 Sharon Meagher, PhD Dr. Robert W. Morris Alexis Nagengast Bob & Buthaina Neveln Sarah Nicksa Karen Rose Sarah Roth Eamonn Tweedy Itzick Vatnick Frances Weaver

Lt. Robert Chinquina ‘69 James ‘69 & Mary Pherson^ Custode A. Crisci Carol Crisci Esq. ‘94L Anthony F. D’Angelo ‘93 Anthony & Rosamaria D’Angelo Marie & Joseph DeSimone M. Elayne DeSimone Don Devilbiss Deborah Jones Elizabeth Dickason, EdD ‘77 Jane Brennan, PhD ‘93^ Dr. Arnold V. Giusini Peter ‘13L & Brittany Giusini ‘14L Tsoflias Esqs. Dr. Francis A. Gruszka ‘53 Mary Gruszka ‘82 Joseph E. Harkins Patricia Sharpe Lewis L. Hutton Jr. ‘46 Bill Lilly John Macintyre Jr. ‘61 Sandra McCrone Regina Pakradooni

Professor Frank C. Lordi Marc Campanaro CFP ‘92, ‘96 Victoria Mayer ‘20 Herman & Rea Ann Mayer


Current Widener University Trustee




Pamela Karpouzis ‘93L Ronald Nagle & Nan Davenport Esq. ‘94L Spencer Phillips MD & Andrea Phillips Raymond J. Locke Jr. ‘77 Sharon Dugan ‘14 Theodore Locke Jr. ‘42 & Grace Locke Walter Locke ‘70^ Donald Longenecker Beth Longenecker Dyjak ‘89 Shane Mahaffee 94L Elizabeth Arnold Esq. ‘94L Louise Maletz Francis & Joan Butler Hannigan Michael McCloy ‘65 Gerald McAteer ‘65 Hon. Charles P. Mirarchi Jr. Janice Mirarchi Laura Beth Mulford, RN, MSN, ‘94 Marie Renzi ‘94 Robert L. Myers, PhD Virginia Brabender, PhD & Arthur Weisfeld^ Dr. Cheriyath Ravindra Nath Paul Anderson, PsyD ‘97 & Melissa Neubauer Anderson, PsyD ‘95 Beth Barol Virginia Brabender, PhD & Arthur Weisfeld^ Michael & Kristy Cassano Dennis Debiak, PsyD ‘95 Elizabeth Foster Kenneth Goldberg, PsyD ‘96 Rebecca Winer Dr. Angus Neaves William Keffer Esq. ‘94L & Alison Neaves Keffer ‘92 Paul Perreca Debbie Perreca Coach Bob Piotti Kevin O’Toole ‘93 Carrie Roglieri ‘96 Dr. Bernard J. Reilly Robert & Rita ‘88 Broyles AlexanderV. Sarcione Sr. Philip Sarcione Esq. ‘80L Paul J. Sykes ‘62 J. Maurice Spang ‘62^ Karen Monninger ‘74 Trembicki Mitchell Trembicki ‘77 Professor Starla Williams Family Design Resources, Inc. John J. Zackowski ‘18 Brinton Osborne William J. Zahka Daniel Fooks ‘81 Charles Zencey GreenWatch Institute

Trustees’ Loyalty Society For a full listing of our Honor Roll of donors, visit

July 1, 2016–June 30, 2017


Football Field Named in Honor of Elizabeth J. Hirschmann

Top: James W. Hirschmann III ’82 and his father, James W. Hirshmann II, attend the first game played on the newly named Elizabeth J. Hirschmann Field. Bottom: Coaches and teammates from the 1981 championship football team joined Jim Hirschmann (far right) for the celebration. Pictured with him are Bob Young ’79, Tony Britton ’82, Bill Manlove, and Tim Keyser ’81.


The stands were packed and excitement filled the air as the team from LaSalle College High School prepared to take on longtime Catholic League rival St. Joseph’s Preparatory School under the lights at Widener stadium on October 20, 2017. But before the football game started, President Wollman grabbed the crowd’s attention with the announcement that this would be the first game played on the newly named Elizabeth J. Hirschmann field. Through a very generous gift, Widener Board of Trustees member Jim Hirschmann ’82 paid tribute to his mother’s memory by naming the football field after her. Jim was on familiar turf, having played football for four years at Widener. In that time, his team lost only three games. They enjoyed an undefeated season in 1981 and went on to be named national champions. Prior to attending Widener, Jim played football in the Catholic League, as did his five brothers. His father coached for the league. According to Jim, one thing he and his brothers could always count on was that their mother would be in the stands cheering them on. “She never missed a game,” he said. It is fitting that this particular game had the distinction of being the first to be played on the field bearing Mrs. Hirschmann’s name, because one of her grandson’s, Colin Hirschmann, played in the game. Jim said, “There’s no doubt that if she were still with us, she would be at the game and supporting Colin.” Dr. Wollman welcomed Jim, his seven siblings and their families, Widener football coaching legend Bill Manlove, and a large group of Jim’s 1981 teammates, friends, and family. She thanked Jim for his generosity, saying, “We are truly honored you chose to memorialize this remarkable woman in this very special way.”


Success at Forensic Resolutions, Inc. Widener alumni (recent and past) are taking the forensic accounting profession by storm. Forensic Resolutions, Inc., the leading independent forensic and investigative accounting firm in the area, is now proud to have three graduates of Widener University: Jim Stavros ’84, Jake Hough ’14, and Sean Sauder ’17. Today, they serve as experts and consultants evaluating and calculating economic damages in a variety of legal and insurance matters, performing financial fraud investigations, and quantifying insurance claims and a myriad of other financial matters in dispute. The firm concentrates on the regional and local market, but has also had national and international cases. Their work is performed to a “forensic” standard, enough to sustain the scrutiny of a court of law, which is held to the highest level of detail. The principals of the firm are called as expert witnesses and testify in court as needed. Forensic Resolutions is a growing firm both in size and scope of services, and it is the largest independent firm that is exclusively devoted to forensic and investigative accounting. The firm recently moved into a new office space in Westmont, New Jersey, and, together with their Philadelphia satellite office, now has 13 full-time employees. Jim Stavros graduated from Widener in 1984 with a bachelor of science in business administration. He has been in investigative forensic accounting since 1988 after earning his MBA, and he takes great “Pride” in hiring recent Widener graduates. He co-founded Forensic Resolutions in 2004 along with Howard Silverstone. Stavros has more than 28 years of

From left: Sean Sauder ’17, Jim Stavros ’84, and Jake Hough ’14

experience and serves as an expert witness and consulting expert in a variety of financial disputes. Stavros is a CPA and is also Certified in Financial Forensics (CFF). He is a speaker and writer in the profession, a member of several professional organizations, and is treasurer for a large Philadelphia child welfare services organization. Having graduated in 2014 with a bachelor of science in business administration, Jake Hough is an associate and joined the firm in January of 2015. Hough calculates financial disputes in personal injury, commercial damages, insurance claim matters, fraud investigations, personal injury, and wrongful death damages. At Widener, Hough was the treasurer for Pi Lambda Phi. He is currently studying to attain his certification as a CPA. Sean Sauder is the newest addition to the firm. He graduated from Widener in May 2017 with a bachelor of science in business administration.

Sauder joined the firm immediately after graduation, and he assists with fraud investigations, subrogation claims, commercial damages, personal injury, and wrongful death cases. At Widener, Sauder was a member of the Men’s Lacrosse Team and student member of both the Association of Certified Fraud Examiners and Pennsylvania Institute of Certified Public Accountants. Like Hough, he is also studying to attain his certification as a CPA. Stavros partially attributes his success and the growth of Forensic Resolutions to the educational foundation forged at Widener many years ago, where he was encouraged to be an entrepreneur while at the same time having a very rigorous and diverse business class caseload. He stated that hiring Widener graduates was an easy thing to do because he knows the quality of the education they received.



Hospitality Management Joins the School of Business Administration By Autumn Heisler ’15 Hospitality Management has found a new home in the School of Business Administration, where it plans to strengthen and grow its programming with savvy business skills and a trademark hospitality smile. “This merger makes complete sense,” said Dr. Jeffrey Lolli, associate professor of hospitality management. “After all, we are a business, and the global hospitality industry happens to be the largest part of the service sector with expected future growth.” This opens the door for students majoring in hospitality management to also minor in related business fields— from sports management and finance to economics and accounting. “It’s the perfect fit, because more unique programs can be created,” Dr.

Lolli said. “This is a nationwide trend whereby schools are seeing the natural fit between hospitality management and business programs. It provides a greater clarity for the type of career that this discipline represents.” He added that hospitality management students in service industries, business, finances, and human resources management, as well as leadership development, will strengthen their core skills through being a part of the School of Business Administration. “It’s no longer looked at in a vacuum; it’s more of a holistic view,” he said. “We’re under one umbrella, one dean, one unit. I believe communication will flow more efficiently between the business programs and hospitality management professors.” Which is great news for students and for alumni as it broadens connections and networking and creates beneficial opportunities. “This opens a whole new avenue of possibilities,” said Sara Hufnagle, a senior in the program. “Working together with SBA is a natural fit for our program. Business and hospitality students will both benefit from the shared classes, networking opportunities,

professional societies, and faculty support systems.” Prospective students will also benefit. “Sometimes parents and incoming students don’t truly understand what the hospitality industry is all about and that it is a business,” said Dr. Lolli. “We’ve received feedback from some of our prospective families, current students, and alumni,” said Dr. Joy Dickerson, associate professor of hospitality management. “They feel that the SBA will add increased value to the HM degree.” One way students can take advantage of the merger is through the new BS/ MBA accelerated degree program. This program enables hospitality management students to earn both a bachelor of science in hospitality management and a master of business administration in just five years. Undergraduate students apply the classes taken in their senior year toward their MBA. Faculty and staff of hospitality management and the other business programs are looking at more ways to collaborate and maximize opportunities of working together within the School of Business Administration. The best part? “We haven’t discovered all our synergies yet,” said Dr. Lolli. “It’s still new and we’re still figuring it out, and we’re asking what are some of the synergies we can still realize.”

Hospitality management students can develop their leadership skills by managing all aspects of the popular Marriott Dining Room dinner series at Widener University. 32

Pride in our traditions, old and new, connects our past with our future

Emma Irving ‘18 rubs the nose of a pride lion for luck.

In this season of giving, please consider a gift to the Widener Fund, which supports financial aid for students in need, or give to any program or initiative that’s important to you. Your gift will have an immediate impact on the lives of our students and the future of the university. You can give to Widener by mail using the envelope included in this magazine, or give online at

Thanks to all who have supported Widener University this year. What a difference you make!


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Widener Magazine Fall 2017  
Widener Magazine Fall 2017