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Class Officer’s Weekend 2014

Greetings All and Happy First Days of Fall

I’ve just returned from a wonderful 48 hours of meetings up in Hanover, NH last weekend where Dartmouth class officers from around the globe ventured back up to dear old Dartmouth to share best practices, hear updates from the College, spend time with Trustees, make new friends and catch up with dear old ones.  The campus was abuzz with all of the new members of the Class of 2018 and other students returning to start fall term-the campus looked beautiful and the positive energy was palpable.  For the first time (at least to my knowledge), the Trustees held their fall meeting at the same time as the Class Officers Weekend (COW)-something that incoming Trustee Chair Bill Helman was intent upon initiating as a way to connect the Trustees and the Class Officers on a more regular basis (great idea-and very effective!).

The Class of ’85 had a good showing of officers with Joe Riley, Joe McGee, Rebecca Osborne and I in attendance along with Sue Finegan, a member of President Hanlon’s special task force on Excessive Behavior at the College, in attendance to give a report on the Task Force’s findings to both the Class Officers and the Trustees on Friday and Saturday respectively (we are so proud of Sue being named to this Special Task Force and especially grateful for her dedication and time on this extremely sensitive and critical issue for the College-Sue also served on the Student Life Initiative Task Force a number of years ago focused on some of these very complex and challenging issues).  Sue and  2 of her fellow Task Force Members spoke to us about what they have been tasked to accomplish, giving us an update on the status of the Task Force’s work.  Not surprisingly, they have been holding extensive meetings, interviewing multiple stake holders  and receiving loads of material concerning the issue of excessive behavior for undergraduates at the College (drinking, sexual assault etc.).  Sue shared with us that they are still in information gathering mode, developing recommendations for the President and the Board of Trustees, with a formal report in early winter.

Friday afternoon and Saturday were filled with multiple meetings-ranging from Class and officer specific gatherings where best practices were shared as well as common challenges and opportunities.  The College also provided various small break-out groups to review and educate us on updates on alumni outreach communication initiatives, retreat updates and a myriad of other topics critical to keeping the College connected to its alumni.  We had the opportunity to see the new ideas innovation incubator/den (amazing) and heard from student leaders as well as faculty about current trends (social, academic, extra-curricular, spiritual etc.) and core ideas/initiatives impacting the campus at this time.  Friday night was a wonderful gathering of all Class Officers and Trustees in the Alumni Gym where classes were awarded prizes for various distinctions (Reunion Giving, Communications etc.).  The Classes of ’54, ’79, ’82 and ’89 won special awards for outstanding records in these areas.

On Saturday, individual class officers were awarded citations for outstanding work in their respective areas and our very own Jeff Weitzman was awarded Webmaster of the Year (non-iModules site) out of all the Class Webmasters.  Kudos to Jeff for his amazing work.  The ’85 website was recognized as head and shoulders above the rest and Jeff was singled out for his innovation, commitment, aptitude and attitude amongst all Webmasters. We could not be more proud and more grateful to have Jeff as part of our ’85 Executive Team.

Finally, Joe, Rebecca, Joe and I met with Sylvia Racca from Blunt regarding our 30th Reunion (mark it down in pen – June 18-21, 2015 – going to be really special and great fun).  Joe R, Rebecca and Todd are working on themes, time lines, entertainment, panel discussion etc while Joe M and Gaby are creating a first rate outreach team for reunion giving that all point to a super things for our 30th.  Please let any of us know if you are interested in being a part of the Reunion Organizing Committee or the Reunion Giving Committee-we need and want your help to make this a memorable time for our class.

Sending everyone my best and as my family and some of our Jewish Classmates get ready to usher in the Jewish New Year (5776), I want to take this opportunity to hope that your year  is filled with good health, sweet things, love, light and lots of laughter!

Peace-

Valerie

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