Alumni Council Meeting Minutes February 11, 2006
Berry Alumni Association
February 11, 2006
The Berry Alumni Council met in Room 128 of the Alumni Center at 9 a.m. on February 11, 2006. President Ouida Dickey called the meeting to order. Chaplain David Fite offered a prayer.
President Dr. Scott Colley spoke to the Council briefly. He shared compliments from visiting professors who recently examined Berry’s math program. He announced that the Board of Trustees would meet soon. Out of 20 board members, 11 are Berry alumni. Seven years ago, there were only three alumni on the board; alumni, he said, bring something really important to the table. Dr. Colley also discussed the presidential candidates, whom he credits with extraordinary career experience at strong schools. He elaborated on his plans for retirement in Virginia, where he will study theology, spend time on his farm and enjoy the good life with family and friends.
Following Dr. Colley’s greeting and comments, the minutes of the November 5 meeting were approved.
Alumni Director Faye Fron provided an update on alumni matters and events. She introduced Brenda Geraldson Jenkins (97C) as facilities and guest services manager for Berry’s Alumni Office. Faye also updated the Council regarding Century Campaign totals and alumni participation percentages. She explained that Berry’s guest cottages will know be referred to as The Cottages at Berry, with a new name, new marketing brochures and a rate increase. Additionally, Faye announced dates for upcoming events:
February 18 Viking Classic Road Race
February 23 Scholarship Night
February 24 Charter Fellow Symposium and Dinner
March Alumni Travel Program (8 to travel to Southern Italy)
April 7-8 Board of Visitors
April 7 Viking Opportunity Road Race, sponsored by John Denney (68C)
April 12 Business Outlook Conference
April 27 6th Annual Reunion Zero
April 29 Commencement
June 2-4 Alumni Weekend
June 4-9 Alumni Work Week
Faye also explained that Dr. Scott Colley will be honored at the Alumni Weekend Friday night Awards and Recognitions Dinner. She announced that 11 class reunions will occur during Alumni Weekend, and that more than 20 chapter/regional events are scheduled in the next few months. Faye expressed her appreciation to Dr. Dickey for her attendance at so many chapter programs and events. She reminded alumni to return reservation requests promptly and to observe deadlines for future events.
Bill Roseen reported on the ongoing study of Alumni Connections. The committee has met twice since the November Council meeting to address three objectives: (1) Increase opportunities to provide volunteer leadership training; (2) study the working of the Alumni Association through a survey; and (3)
study the Council and its operation. The electronic survey will be tested this week and sent to a large number of alumni in the near future. A proposal for change, based upon an 80-percent survey-participation rate by the Council, will be introduced at the closing session.
Parliamentarian Bart Cox reported on the update of chapter bylaws and school affiliate organization bylaws. He explained that the governing rules of these organizations should be bylaws, not constitutions as previously labeled. This change necessitated minor changes in the Alumni Association’s constitution and bylaws, including “housekeeping edits” to make the wording more concise. As the Executive Committee approved these changes on February 10, the documents will be taken to chapter and affiliate leadership this afternoon. The minor changes to the Association’s constitution and bylaws were passed with no opposition.
There was no additional Executive Committee news for Tracy Batchelor to report.
Bill Roseen submitted the following slate of officers agreed upon by the Nominating Committee in January:
Council Members before median year (1984): Mr. Robert T. Aiken (82A), Dr. Jean Adcock Curran (56C), Ms. Patty Etchison (77C), Mr. Peter Henriksen (53H, 57C), Mrs. Mary Camp Patrick (69C), Mr. J. Ronald Thornton (61C)
Council Members after median year (1984): Dr. Leann Yoda Blackburn (91C), Mr. Daniel Greear (04C), Dr. Thomas Jarrett (89C), Mr. Robert Moon (88C), Mr. Mark Moraitakis (91C), Ms. Cary Austin Sanders (05C)
Vice Presidents: Dr. Harlan Chapman (58C)-VP for Berry Heritage, Ms. Valerie Loner (91C)-VP for Institutional Relations, Dr. Betty Whitten (60c)-VP for Alumni Events
The Executive Committee approved this slate on February 10; the Alumni Council approved it on February 11 with no opposition.
Dr. Ouida Dickey provided a recap of the presidential search committee progress. She then thanked Jennifer Edgerly for working with chapter events and Bart Cox and Ed England for the wording changes of the constitution and bylaws. She announced that the Humanities and Social Science alumni affiliate organization will begin April 13 with an organization luncheon. She also announced that the office of the director of alumni and constituent relations will be named in honor of Walter A. Johnson, Sr., deceased emeritus director of alumni affairs, who served the alumni for 25 years. Dr. Dickey explained that the Executive Committee unanimously endorsed a resolution prepared by Ed England, Tim Howard, Martha and Tom Bowen, and others, praising the efforts of Scott Colley in his presidency at Berry. The Council also unanimously endorsed this resolution. It will be professionally printed and framed and presented to Dr. Colley during Alumni Weekend. (This presentation will be a surprise!) In addition, Dr. Dickey noted that flowers were sent to Carolyn and Earl Tillman following their family’s tragedy.
Brad Roberts reported that the Berry Business Alumni Association has an event scheduled in North Atlanta on April 20 to meet and greet fellow alumni and receive Campbell School of Business updates from Dean Krishna Dhir. A reception will be held during Alumni Weekend in Green Hall.
Celeste Creswell reported that the Berry Math and Science Alumni Association is planning an event in April to gain awareness and involvement. The group plans to initiate a student writing competition, which will be conducted electronically first, then developed into a journal.
Dr. Dickey then shared participation figures for the Alumni Council. The Council is up 7.6 points in giving compared with this time last year.
Dr. Tom Dasher, vice president for academic affairs and provost, and Dr. Kathy McKee, associate provost and dean of academic services, spoke to the Council regarding academics, work and experiential learning and SACS self-study preparations. Dr. Dasher shared Berry’s most recent educational benchmarks through external accreditation reviews. Dr. McKee explained the peer review process to maintain the highest standards for Berry’s students--SACS. She discussed the focus on student-learning objectives and outcomes. She is available to discuss the ongoing progress of SACS and student learning in the future.
Debbie Heida, vice president for student affairs, and Dana Paul, dean of admissions and financial aid, spoke to the Council regarding admissions, students and alumni connections. Dean Heida described Berry’s current students from an incoming freshman survey. She explained methods of involvement for alumni with current students. Dana Paul, who came to Berry in January 2006, explained that alumni can be involved with admissions by providing positive word of mouth, aiding in prospect identification, reinforcing the decision to attend Berry, and volunteering with on- and off-campus Berry events.
The meeting was then recessed for lunch at noon in Ford Dining Hall and ensuing committee meetings.
President Dickey brought the meeting to order at 3:05 p.m. and called for reports from the committee chairmen.
Association Awards Committee: Lewis Copeland reported that the committee provided suggestions for increasing the awards nomination pool. In the future, nominations will be solicited from deans, professors, department chairs and affiliate organizations. It was also recommended that deans and professors be encouraged to educate current students on the successes of alumni. In addition, the committee approved two nominees each for the Entrepreneurial Spirit and the Outstanding Young Alumni Awards, as well as three nominees each for the Distinguished Service and the Distinguished Achievement Awards to be presented to the external selection committee for determination of alumni award winners. Also, the nomination letters and procedure forms were formally approved. The plan is to post them online for the next awards process. In addition, the committee selected two honorary alumni nominees: John Heneisen, former dean of work, and Bill Stokely, chairman of the Board of Trustees. The Council unanimously approved both honorary alumni nominations. The Council approved this report.
Alumni Events Committee: Steve Tankersley reported that the Alumni Events Committee completed the most productive meeting in history! Cecily Crow is looking into whether student labor can be utilized for Work Week. The committee continues to refine its money handling procedures for Work Week. A joint barbeque dinner during Work Week for alumni, students, faculty and staff is being considered. This
would be coordinated with the student activities office. In addition, the committee is looking into the possibility of purchasing a sound system for Ford Dining Hall, and Betty Whitten is investigating other alumni events projects. The Council approved this report.
Berry Heritage Committee: Jerry Shelton explained that the notebook of honorary alumni will be housed in the Alumni Center when it arrives from the project chairperson. Dr. Dickey is looking for a volunteer coordinator to maintain this document. Jerry also updated the Council on the wildflower project, which yielded $450 for seeds last year. He suggested the possibility of obtaining a budget item number so that alumni can donate to this. The committee is also seeking volunteers to assist with Alumni Weekend at Possum Trot and Roosevelt Cabin, as well as ongoing volunteers to work in the Alumni Center, Museum, Oak Hill, gift shop or Oak Hill grounds. Jerry announced upcoming historical exhibits on campus:
February 1-28 Erasing the Color Line, Black History Month
March 1-31 “Got Gumption,” Women’s History Month
March 7 A Celebration of Martha Freeman
Rebecca Roberts has requested items significant to Berry Archives. The class of 1956 will provide funding for portable shelving units in the Archives. Finally, Jerry reported that the Founder’s Day Voices of the Past program was successful with 65 students and 30 faculty in attendance. The Council approved this report.
Financial Support Committee: Barbara McCollum announced that the participation rate is 3 percent higher than this time last year. The finance committee is calling with pledge reminders, each member making ten calls per month. The committee highly recommends a special appeal to alumni who attended within Dr. Colley’s term as president. The current participation rate (as of February 11) of the Council is approximately 89 percent; the goal is 100 percent, so Barbara encouraged everyone to do his or her part. The Council approved this report.
Institutional Relations Committee: Kathy Ingalsbe filled in for Genyth Travis as chair of the institutional relations committee. Ouida Dickey and Bart Cox explained the bylaws and constitution changes resulting from the updating of the chapter bylaws. The committee discussed opportunities for chapter members to become more involved with students through Reunion Zero for graduating seniors and Berry Bound events for prospective students. The committee also discussed increasing participation by young alumni. It was noted that future presidents’ summits would involve all officers. Kathy recommended that chapter presidents continue to meet on a quarterly basis, perhaps the evening before alumni council meetings. The Council approved this report.
Ad hoc Committee on Alumni Connections: Bill Roseen recommended that, beginning in July 2006, the Institutional Relations Committee be changed to become the Young Alumni and Student Relations Committee. Chapter presidents would continue to meet outside of council committee time, probably before council meetings. The incoming vice president has agreed to chair this new committee, and Bart Cox has prepared the textual changes to the existing bylaws. The focus of this committee would be to develop ways to attract young alumni and send a message to students and young alumni that Berry’s Alumni Council recognizes their different needs. Cecily Crow expressed support for this idea. Class presidents would be included in this committee. The Council unanimously approved this change.
President Dickey is appointing a new ad hoc Alumni Committee on Ford Gymnasium* to explore ideas for the use of that gymnasium when the Cage Center is complete. Dr. Larry Posey, chair of the earlier ad hoc Committee on Ford Buildings, will chair the committee, which will include Dean Debbie Heida. Other members will be announced.
The Executive Committee approved the first Saturday in August, November and February as the 2006-2007 Alumni Council meeting dates. The dates are August 5 and November 4, 2006, and February 3, 2007. The annual meeting will be June 3, 2007.
Bettyann O’Neill has allocated funding for external expertise to analyze and supplement the alumni connections survey. Thank you to Bettyann!
Council members were encouraged to visit the upcoming historical exhibits in the Krannert Lobby and the Berry Museum.
Council members were reminded to keep the Colley resolution confidential.
With no further business, Dr. Dickey thanked everyone for his or her participation and adjourned the meeting at 3:40 p.m.
Tracy Morgan Batchelor
*The title of the ad hoc committee has been expanded to Alumni Committee on Ford and Richards Gymnasiums. Other members of the committee are Franklin Adams (54H, 58C, retired professor), Rhea Clemmons (07C, president of Student Alumni Association), Jennifer Dickey (77A, 80C, curator and preservationist, Berry), Mark Hopkins (77C, director of Berry’s physical plant), and Frances Richey-Goldby (83A, 87C, member of Berry Board of Visitors). The committee will bring recommendations to the Alumni Council in February 2007 for endorsement and submission to appropriate officials.