Mary Baldwin Employees Honored

May 25, 2010

Retirees Recognized for more than 500 Combined Years of Service to the College

Mary Baldwin University celebrated the retirement and hard work of 20 faculty and staff members May 20 in Hunt Dining Hall. Mary Baldwinnews caught up with them — and those who worked with them — for a few parting words.

Susan Britton, assistant director, MAT, 18 years of service

  • Special Mary Baldwin memories: “I will always remember and be grateful to Dr. Lesley Novack and Dr. Patty Westhafer for hiring me as a Teaching Partner. They gave me the opportunity to share my knowledge and teaching experience with our graduate students.”
  • What she will miss most about Mary Baldwin: “I will miss the students and my co-workers in the Graduate Teacher Education Program.”

Becky Dick, director, Teacher Education Service, 14 years of service

  • Has capably navigated the complexities of setting up teaching practica and student teacher placements for both RCW and Baldwin Online and Adult Programs teacher education students, developing and maintaining good working relationships with regional school districts
  • Special Mary Baldwin memories: She participated in Mary Baldwin study abroad, traveling with Vladimir Garkov to Greece, Bulgaria, and Turkey.

Ginny Francisco ’64 , professor of theatre, 41 years of service

  • What she will miss most about Mary Baldwin: “I will miss terribly seeing the light bulb flash in students’ eyes as they grasp a concept or a new idea, and then seeing it flash again as they connect that idea to our own lives and realize the amazing continuity of the human experience, perhaps particularly women’s experience.”
  • Also: “Mary Baldwin is a very special college, one that provides a wonderful and distinctive education for women (and some smart men) at all levels. I’m a missionary about Mary Baldwin, which made me the woman I am, for better or for worse. Thanks to my Mary Baldwin education, I’ve had an amazingly rich, varied, fully engaging life. I’m grateful for that, and especially for wonderful students and colleagues.”

Mike Gentry, associate professor of math, 28 years of service

  • What will he miss most about Mary Baldwin: “The people at Mary Baldwin University are its greatest asset. It’s been a privilege to be associated with individuals of such high caliber.”

Bob Grotjohn, professor of English, 17 years of service

  • Recognized on the “Wall of Honor” among the “Great Cloud of Witnesses” for his support of minority students and multicultural curriculum and co-curriculum. One truly unforgettable moment when he wore a curly black wig to read a poem during his “last lecture” in January 2001, sparking howls of laughter and delight from the sardine-packed crowd in Hunt Lounge.
  • His service to Mary Baldwin has included various faculty committees, Division Coordinator, Chair of Division Coordinators, Freshman Advisor, Parents Council participation, President’s Advisory Team, a number of faculty and administrative search committees, VWIL promotion board, General Education Revision Taskforce; helped develop African-American Studies minor

Carole Grove, director of the Graduate Teacher Education Program, 10 years of service

  • Favorite Mary Baldwin memories: “The deja vu feeling I get each time I go into the Administration building that takes me back to my days attending an all female college in the 1960s. The great satisfaction of having a number of my students I taught at Bridgewater College come through the MAT program, and some now finishing their PhD work. Being completely submerged in hot silky “marsh mud” on a trip to the Chesapeake Bay with the Environment-Based Learning program. Mostly, the wonderful people I have been privileged to work with in the Edmondson House and beyond. Mary Baldwin is a great place to work and I have nothing but fond memories of my time here.”
  • What she will miss most about Mary Baldwin: “Lugging computers and tote bags of books up and down the steps at Edmondson House to the second floor! I will miss that, but I will miss the people the most. Great, great people here.”

Marion Hart, administrative assistant for Advancement Services, 24 years

  • Marion worked in Institutional Advancement her entire time at Mary Baldwin, under 6 vice presidents and interim vice presidents; assisted with Advisory Board of Visitors and Parents Council for many years and is fondly remembered by those who served on those boards during that time. She was also for many years the personable voice of the department, charming donors and volunteers who called.
  • Marion is a creative and generous soul who has delighted staff, alumnae, and students with her artwork, jewelry, sculpture, masks, roses; one alumna from the early 1990s recently reported with pride that she cherishes the drawing Marion did in honor of her graduation.

Pat Hunt, chaplain, 25 years of service

  • What she will miss most about Mary Baldwin: “I will most miss the people. It has been the best education I could possibly have had. Mary Baldwin is fortunate to have such truly fine employees regardless of the area in which they work. It has been a privilege to live and work among the people here. My children were 4 and 7 when I arrived. They literally grew up on the campus.”

Nancy Keaton, assistant registrar, 22 years of service

  • Nancy continued the registrar’s office tradition of great longevity and great service. According to Lew Askegaard, Dean of Institutional Research, Associate Dean of the College and Registrar: “The Registrar’s office at Mary Baldwin has always been remarkable for good people who do a good job and stay a long time. When Betty Beard left [in 1988], everyone said she was irreplaceable. But Nancy was the same sort of person, did a wonderful job, and served for over 20 years.”

Diane Kent, associate vice president for Enrollment Management/Student Affairs, 29 years of service

  • Special Mary Baldwin memories: “Because of the many, many good experiences and occasions, I have laughed a lot during my career at Mary Baldwin…that is a special memory of mine and one for which I am very grateful.”

Wanda Morris, administrator and operations coordinator for Institutional Advancement, 32 years of service

  • Favorite Mary Baldwin memories: “32 years I have a life-time of memories! I have attended more baby showers, bridal showers and even weddings than you can even imagine. In the 90’s we had a baby born almost every year to one of our staff members. It has made for some exciting times!”
  • What she will miss most about Mary Baldwin: “I will miss having daily contact with my co-workers, especially Marion whom I have shared an office with for six years. She is a remarkable person and I will really miss seeing her on a daily basis.”

Pamela Murray, professor of education, coordinator of the Roanoke Center, 25 years of service

  • Special Mary Baldwin memories: It has been a joy to work with such excellent colleagues over the years, particularly in the Baldwin Online and Adult Programs
  • What she will miss most about Mary Baldwin: Her students and colleagues: “I have always felt that being an Baldwin Online and Adult Programs faculty member at Mary Baldwin was the best job I could have imagined for myself, and I wish that feeling for my colleagues who are continuing.”

Judy Neff, assistant director of Information Management and Gift Processing, 22 years of service

  • Has worked here since 1988 in Institutional Advancement, first in the Alumnae/i Office and then in Advancement Services

Thomas Reed, utility worker, Food Service, 37 years of service

  • Students adore him and always have; a number cried and hugged him goodbye earlier this week when they found out he wouldn’t be here next year. At reunions, alumnae/i are so glad to see him.
  • According to Dining Services Director Mary Van Nortwick: “Thomas serves as an example of a life lived right.”

Glenn Smith, facilities, 33 years of service

  • According to Director of Building Services Marty Weeks: “Glenn is just a really good human being. His co-workers will really miss their daily interactions with him. They love to kid around with him and get him “riled up.” It is always in good fun, and he takes it with grace.”

Sandy Sprouse, admissions coordinator, Baldwin Online and Adult Programs, 29 years of services

  • Special Mary Baldwin memories: She loved working on the top floor of the old Academic Building, before its renovation. “Most of the faculty was housed there then, and Linda Fry and I did typing, typing, typing for them (before the days of computers) on Selectric and daisy wheel typewriters and sometimes using the ‘purple monster’ in the hall at the top of the front stairs. We did syllabi, tests, exams, papers, even a few dissertations.”
  • What she will miss most about Mary Baldwin: The world of academia, her Baldwin Online and Adult Programs House family, and interaction with friends and co-workers. “I’ve enjoyed so much being part of a community within a community. From Baldwin Online and Adult Programs House, my mind’s eye can see how the concentric circles go from that small nucleus, really to the ends of the earth. In retrospect, I see how amazing it is to have touched so many lives through my years at Mary Baldwin, to have played even a small role in an organization whose purpose it is to help people fulfill their dreams and aspirations through education. In the end, I would reiterate what I have said many times along the way, Mary Julia has certainly been good to me and my family.”

Sara Talbott, coordinator of student jobs, over 30 years of service

  • Has been at Mary Baldwin since birth: “The local hospital where I was born was located at the time where the PEG Center is now!” When she was a child, her parents often brought her to plays and concerts at the College, and she decided to attend Mary Baldwin after high school. She graduated in 1960, majoring in music and just celebrated her 50th reunion!
  • What she will miss most about Mary Baldwin: “I’ve been blessed to work with wonderful people over the years, and I would miss my current co-workers very much — that is, if I were not actually still going be working a few hours a week! I just can’t seem to get away from this place!”

Brent Taylor, instruction technology specialist, 23 years of service

  • According to Vice President for Public Relations Crista Cabe: “He has gone out of his way many times to provide needed service. For example, he delivered a new phone to my home 25 minutes from Staunton, on his own time, when I was sick and without a college phone.”
  • Brent will miss the people at Mary Baldwin the most.

Patty Westhafer, professor of education, 26 years of service

  • Patty was instrumental in the design and creation of the Master of Arts in Teaching program.
  • She established tutoring program for area at-risk students, marshalling Mary Baldwin students to serve as tutors.
  • She received the Mednick Fellowship and numerous other awards in her tenure at Mary Baldwin.

Dorita Wharton, housekeeper, 24 years of service

  • The students in Spencer Residence Hall, where she has worked in the past few years at Mary Baldwin, have gone out of their way to let her supervisor know how much they like and appreciate her.

Pinning and grinning:
Current Mary Baldwin employees were honored at the annual appreciation breakfast May 24 for 380 years of service to the college.

30 Years
Jeff Wagner, supervisor of grounds

25 Years
Patricia Hunt, college chaplain
Margo Leach, faculty resource coordinator

20 Years
Bill Betlej, director of computer information services
Linda Fretwell, student accounts coordinator
Diane Fridley, housekeeper
Marion Ward, director of Baldwin Online and Adult Programs

15 Years
Billy Adkins, housekeeping
Martha Clark, cashier
Kathy McDaniel, assistant to the associate vice president of enrollment management
Allan Moye, assistant professor and director of studios
Brenda Bryant, senior vice president for enrollment management administration and dean of students
Gretchen Newman, director of design

10 Years
Sue Armstrong, accounting administrator
Drema Hernandez, administrative assistant for Baldwin Online and Adult Programs
Christy Baker, director of student life, Program for the Exceptionally Gifted
Lynn Gilliland ’80, director of first year experience
Carole Grove, director of Graduate Teacher Education
Christy Shelton, athletic events coordinator
Morgan Alberts Smith ’99, web producer/operations manager

5 Years
Mary Almarode, pub manager
Lance Bell, campus support
Todd Collier, painter/maintenance technician
Debra Galvez, telecounselor
Julie Chappell, director of career development services
Robin Dietrich, director of financial aid
Jennifer Hagen, director of annual giving
Jennifer Brillhart Kibler ’91, executive director of alumnae/i and parent relations
Kerry Mills, academic advisor Baldwin Online and Adult Programs
Jessie Moyers, senior accountant
Susannah Via, donor relations coordinator
Lisa Wells, executive director of student life