Posts by lweddell
Davis, who started when Tiefenthaler took the helm on July 1, previously worked in the president’s office at Wake Forest University, so he knows how hectic the job can be. “I lived three minutes from campus, and in those three minutes, my life could drastically change,” he said.
It’s a good thing he’s used to having his day turn on a dime. Davis oversees the daily functions of the office of the president, a job that entails a wide variety of responsibilities. Among them: helping the president develop and implement strategic initiatives, coordinating senior staff meetings, serving as a liaison between senior administrators and other campus and external constituents, overseeing the presidential staff and budget, working with the board of trustees, coordinating special projects, and representing the president on various college committees. In between, he commutes back and forth from Denver. (The commuting will end in early September, when the apartment he has rented in Colorado Springs becomes available.)
“Some people may see the chief of staff as the person behind the throne, but that is not the case,” Davis said. “I love working with Jill because that is what you do – work with her. She’s that way with everyone, very collaborative. Of course, I know she is in charge, but it is great to be able to see her as more of a partner, colleague, and mentor.”
One of the things he most likes about his job is that it allows him to help people solve problems. “If there’s a problem, my reaction is ‘let’s deal with it; let’s fix it.’ I know I can’t solve everything on my own, but we can get a lot done through collaboration and teamwork,” he said.
Davis worked with Tiefenthaler on a variety of projects at Wake Forest, including an effort to start a childcare center on campus, initiatives to increase faculty-student engagement, an assessment of student life policies, and the creation of new spaces on campus.
He’s looking forward to having students back on campus and having the academic year begin. “What we do is for the students. If you lose that part of the vision, you’re not doing your job,” he said. “Right now I have the opportunity to be in a place to help Jill and CC succeed.
“I want people to see me as someone they can go to for answers, and not get the runaround,” he said. “I want people to know they can say anything; they don’t have to filter it when talking with me. I will be accessible, and I believe in an open-door policy.”
Born and raised in Atlanta, Davis graduated from Wake Forest with a double major in Chinese and political science. He didn’t intend to major in Chinese, but since he had studied the language at the International Baccalaureate high school he attended, he decided to take Chinese to fulfill his language requirement. “I fell in love with it,” he said. “I had amazing professors, and I also had the opportunity to spend a summer in Beijing.”
As for political science, Davis said he always loved politics. “I like the data collection and the numerical aspect of it. I like studying what makes people do what they do; what gives them power and how they manipulate that power. It’s interesting to look at different events, such as the recent uprisings in Libya and Egypt and ask ‘Why there, and not somewhere else?’ ” Another area of interest is public policy and its influence on various aspects of life. He recently traveled to Liberia, a country with minimal infrastructure and devastated by decades of civil war, as part of a five-person team from Wake Forest. The group was there to assess the possibility of a partnership between Wake Forest and the University of Liberia. “I know it is cliché, but it is interesting to see how much we take for granted: the ability to have constant electricity, running water, opening and closing windows, “ he said. “We saw that we have the capacity to do a lot for their institution by doing, relatively, so little.
Although Davis is enthusiastic about Chinese and political science, he almost didn’t major in either subject. He spent his first year of college at the Juilliard School, where he planned to study the bass. He left after a year, realizing it wasn’t for him. “I wanted a more well-rounded education; I didn’t want to be tied to one discipline. I wanted to study something that could relate to other areas, and not be one dimensional. I wanted to lead a life in which I could think critically; I wanted to get to know my professors.” He paused, then added, “I sound so CC. But it’s just what CC does so well.”
He recently attended the Aspen Music Festival and heard Mahler’s Symphony No. 2 in C minor, “Resurrection.” After the concert, he thought to himself, “Why did I give this up? That could be me.” But on the drive back, he realized he would not have the same appreciation for the concert if he were a professional bass player. “I realized I love my life now,” he said.
It wasn’t a difficult decision to move to Colorado, said Davis, a movie buff who also enjoys the arts and theater. He said there is a young feeling to Colorado Springs, and a warm and friendly feeling at the college. “The college has so many strengths,” he said. “The faculty members are so engaged. You can tell they love teaching and care for the students. The CC staff is extremely supportive, and the students are amazingly creative and talented. And then, of course, there’s Pikes Peak.”
On his initial trip to the campus, he visited Garden of the Gods. “It was beautiful. I took a photo and texted it to Jill, saying ‘Now I know why you and Kevin decided to come here.’ “
One thing Davis is very much looking forward to is skiing. “I am dying to ski,” he said. “I can’t wait to learn how.”
Colorado College Professor of Economics and Business Larry Stimpert has published a new book, “Strategic Thinking: Today’s Business Imperative.” The book provides a realistic picture of the dynamic and complex process of strategic management in organizations. Written from the perspective of a manager, the book builds on theories of managerial and organizational knowledge that have had a powerful influence on many business fields over the last two decades. However, “Strategic Thinking” also focuses on how managers understand their business environments, assess and marshal their firms’ resources, and strive for advantage in the competitive marketplace by examining economic, structural, and managerial explanations for firm performance.
Stimpert has taught at the Korean University Business School and the U.S. Air Force Academy. Prior to entering the academic field, he worked in the railroad industry and in a variety of marketing, forecasting, and economic analysis positions.
The book, published by Routledge, is co-authored by Julie Chesley, formerly of the CC economics department and now assistant professor of organization theory and applied behavioral science at the Graziadio School of Business at Pepperdine University, and Irene Duhaime, senior associate dean and professor at Georgia State University.
KRCC, Colorado College’s NPR-member station, took first place in the Public Radio News Directors, Inc., competition with an episode produced on the news show “Western Skies.” The episode, titled “Agriculture,” won in the Best News/Public Affairs Program category in the “small newsroom” division. The show, produced by news director Andrea Chalfin and Noel Black, originally aired on Sept. 5, 2010.
KRCC’s “Western Skies” also received a second-place award from the Colorado Associated Press in the Documentary category for the same episode. The Associated Press competition was among large market stations and not limited to public stations. The “Agriculture” episode, which sought to connect listeners with the people who produce food, interviewed people ranging from those who advocate community-supported agriculture to traditional ranchers. The full episode can be heard at: http://radiocoloradocollege.org/2010/09/western-skies-september-5-2010-agriculture/
The Board of Trustees voted on May 20, 2011, in favor of amending the college bylaws, effective as of July 1, 2011, to add “gender identity, gender expression” as an additional category for protection in Article IX “Equal Opportunity Statement” of the bylaws and in the college’s anti-discrimination policy. The bylaws state that any such vote is not effective until expiration of a 30-day advance notice requirement of the resolution amending the bylaws. The draft resolution for the Gender Identity Bylaws Amendment was provided to the trustees at the May 21, 2011 plenary session. The 30-day advance notice requirement for the Gender Identity Bylaws Amendment has now passed. The Bylaws Amendment will now be effective on July 1, 2011.
Researchers have developed a new way of determining the body temperatures of dinosaurs, providing new insights into whether dinosaurs were cold-or warm-blooded.
A paper co-written by Associate Geology Professor Henry Fricke discusses the techniques used to determine the body temperature of animals that have been extinct for 150 million years.
By analyzing the teeth of sauropods — long-tailed, long-necked dinosaurs that were the biggest land animals ever to have lived — the scientists found that these dinosaurs were nearly as warm as most modern mammals. The paper can be viewed at: http://www.sciencemag.org/content/early/2011/06/22/science.1206196
The research was funded by the National Science Foundation’s division of earth sciences
Anne Hyde, professor of history and Southwest studies, recently published “Empires, Nations, and Families: A History of the North American West, 1800-1860,” part of a five-volume series that reassesses the entire field of Western history.
The book, published by the University of Nebraska Press, makes clear that the Louisiana Purchase did not involve virgin wilderness discovered by virtuous Anglo entrepreneurs. Rather, the United States was a newcomer in a place already complicated by vying empires.
The period covered in Hyde’s book, 1800-1860, spans the fur trade, Mexican War, gold rushes, and the Overland Trail, usually very male-dominated fields of study. Hyde took a different approach, and, using letters and business records, documented the broad family associations that crossed national and ethnic boundaries. “These folks turned out to be almost entirely people of great wealth and status who loved and married across racial and cultural lines. It turns out that the West of that period is really a mixed race world that made perfect cultural and economic sense until national ideas made that cultural choice impossible in the 1850s,” Hyde said.
“Empires, Nations, and Families” reveals how, in the 1850s, immigrants to the newest region of the United States violently wrested control from Native and other powers, and how conquest and competing demands for land and resources brought about a volatile frontier culture—not at all the peace and prosperity that the new power had promised.
The Worner Campus Center, the nucleus of all campus activity, is undergoing a major renovation that will result in a more welcoming and energy-efficient building.
Most of the Worner Center improvements are focused on the main level, with the goal of transforming the dated and congested Rastall Hall into a dining area that is bright, sustainable, and easily navigated. A portion of the north side of Rastall will be opened to the Perkins Lounge area with full light doors (see artist’s rendition), resulting in a flexible layout that can accommodate a variety of functions. Most notable of the changes will be the servery area which will be open to the dining area and will provide a variety of new food choices.
Colorado Coffee is moving inside the entrance to Benji’s, and Benji’s will be upgraded with an improved layout, which includes a new grill area, Taqueria, Sushi, Grab n’ Go coolers, flooring, furniture, and new paint. Benji’s, along with Colorado Coffee, also will be used as an additional study area in the evenings, giving students more study area options.
Energy efficiency is a major goal of the renovation, and the project is aiming for LEED certification, said Will Wise, building trades manager for facilities and project manager for this project. Approximately 144 solar panels producing 35KW are being installed on the Worner Center roof to help offset the electrical usage in the building. An interactive flatscreen on the main floor will be devoted to monitoring energy consumption in Worner Center, he said.
The shared kitchen between Rastall and Benji’s will have the most energy-efficient dishwasher available, one which drastically reduces water use. The new kitchen appliances are Energy Star-rated, lighting throughout the building will be upgraded to low-energy usage lights, plumbing will be low-flow and all 25 toilets in Worner will be dual-flush.
The building’s seven air handlers, most of which date from the original 1959 building, will be reduced to five vastly more efficient ones. The air handlers take care of the building’s ventilation, heating, and air conditioning needs.
“Our goal is to reduce energy consumption by a minimum of 30 percent,” Wise said. A 30 percent reduction would result in an anticipated savings of $108,000 a year, he said. Total cost of the project is $9 million, which includes $7.7 million for construction, as well as architect, engineer, permits, and testing fees, and funds for new paint and carpeting, and other aesthetic issues, Wise said.
The project has a tight timeline of 81 days, and in order to complete the work by the August 19 deadline, two crews are working two shifts, six days a week . Bon Appetit will then have a week to get the kitchen ready before new students arrive on campus. In the meantime, the kitchen in Bemis Hall, which was remodeled last summer in preparation for the Worner Center renovation, is handing all the campus’s summer dining needs.
The project is the first major renovation of Rastall Hall since 1988, when the building took on a major transformation, and follows recommendations made in a 2009 study involving faculty, staff, students, and trustees.
Colorado College introduces its new tenure-track faculty. They are:
Helen Daly, Assistant Professor of Philosophy
Daly received a Ph.D. in philosophy from the University of Arizona in 2011, and holds a B.A. in philosophy and English from the University of Akron. She specializes in metaphysics and the philosophy of language. In her dissertation, “Vagueness and Borderline Cases,” Daly clarifies the various explanations of people or things which are stuck in a state of “in-between.” She has published in “The Oxford Handbook of Causation” and “A Companion to Metaphysics.”
Darrell Killian, Assistant Professor of Biology
Killian received his B.A. in molecular biology and biochemistry from Wesleyan University, and in 2004 earned his Ph.D. in biology and developmental genetics from New York University. He was a visiting professor at Colorado College and recently held an assistant professor position at the College of New Jersey. Much of his graduate and postdoctoral research deals with the regulation of sex-specific programmed cell death in C. Elegans. He has been recognized by numerous grants and awards, including a Society for Developmental Biology Teaching Faculty Travel Grant and the Gladys Mateyko Award for Excellence in Biology.
Scott Krzych, Assistant Professor of New Media
Krzych holds a B.A. in English from California State University-Northridge, an M.A. in English from the State University of New York-Buffalo, and recently earned his Ph.D. in screen studies and English from Oklahoma State University. Krzych will be the first tenure-track professor of New Media at Colorado College. His various papers and publications address a range of subjects from digital cinema to video game studies to analysis of Glenn Beck’s television show. His dissertation examines evangelical representations of the apocalypse, including such films as “A Thief in the Night,” “Left Behind,” and “The Omega Code” and such prophecy-based cable programming as “The Hal Lindsey Report” and “Jack Van Impe Presents.”
Christina Leza, Assistant Professor of Anthropology
Leza earned her M.A. in linguistic anthropology from the University of California, Davis and obtained a Ph.D. from the University of Arizona in 2009, where she wrote a dissertation on indigenous activism in response to United States and Mexico border enforcement policies. She works with the Indigenous Alliance Without Borders and has won numerous grants and awards for her work. Her interests include legal and political anthropology, indigenous cultures and social movements in the Americas, and grassroots political organizing.
Corina McKendry, Assistant Professor of Political Science
McKendry received her Ph.D. in politics from the University of California, Santa Cruz in June 2011. Her dissertation, “Smokestacks to Green Roofs: City Environmentalism, Green Urban Entrepreneurialism, and the Regulation of the Postindustrial City,” examines the relationship between city environmentalism and the changing role of cities in the globalized economy. She is particularly interested in how city leaders are using environmentalism to promote economic growth and the implications that this has for social equity in the green city.
Jim Parco, Associate Professor of Economics
Parco received a Ph.D. from the University of Arizona, where he studied under Amnon Rapoport and Nobel Laureate Vernon Smith. After completing his doctorate, he returned to the faculty of the Air Force Academy, his undergraduate alma mater, and taught courses in management, leadership, decision-making, and investments. In addition to teaching at the Academy from 1996-1999 and 2003-2007, Parco served on the National Security Council at the White House during the Clinton Administration and in a diplomatic capacity overseas with the American Embassy in Tel Aviv. In 2007, he received the Thomas Jefferson National Award from the Military Religious Freedom Foundation (MRFF) for his forthright actions in advocating for cadets at the Air Force Academy. In 2009, he was awarded the Military Officers Association of America’s (MOAA) Outstanding Faculty Award for his work at Air Command and Staff College, and in 2010, was named educator of the year.
Andrea Righi, Assistant Professor of Italian
In 2004 Righi received his M.A. in North American Literatures from the University of California, San Diego. Since then he received a degree in comparative literature at the University of Bologna and a Ph.D. in Italian studies from Cornell University. His book, “Gramsci Fell Asleep: Life, Biopolitics and Social Change in Italy,” will be published by Palgrave Macmillan. He also has published several articles in journals and books in both English and Italian. Righi has been the recipient of several awards and fellowships, including a Fulbright Scholarship in 2004.
Habiba Vaghoo, Assistant Professor of Chemistry
Vaghoo received a B.A. in chemistry from Concordia College, where she graduated magna cum laude. She went on to pursue a Ph.D. in organic chemistry from the University of Southern California. Her dissertation explores the synthesis of organofluorine compounds. She recently served as a visiting assistant professor at The College of Wooster in Ohio. She has earned several awards and scholarships, including the Stauffer Post Doctoral Fellowship and the Harold and Lillian Moulton Graduate Fellowship for excellence in research.
Dana Wittmer, Assistant Professor of Political Science
Wittmer earned her Ph.D. in political science at The Ohio State University in 2011, where she also earned her master’s degree. She studies American politics, with specific interests in public opinion, gender and politics, public policy, and Congress. Her dissertation, “A Theory of Institutional Representation: The Link Between Political Engagement and Gendered Institutions,” focuses on public opinion about Congress as a gendered institution, paying particular attention to how these perceptions affect political engagement. Her other research interests include human trafficking within the U.S., the impact of gendered leadership on public policy, and gender and legislative effectiveness within Congress.
Shawn Womack, Associate Professor of Drama and Dance
Shawn comes to Colorado College from Grinnell College’s department of theatre and dance, where she was an associate professor. In addition to her experience as performer, choreographer, and teacher, she also was founder and executive director of Dance Projects, Inc., a non-profit organization that produced contemporary dance and interdisciplinary projects. Shawn holds a B.F.A. of fine arts, ballet, from the University of Cincinnati College – Conservatory of Music, where she graduated magna cum laude, and an M.F.A. in dance from the University of California, Riverside. Shawn will serve as chair of the drama and dance department at Colorado College.
Naomi Wood, Assistant Professor of Spanish
Wood earned her M.A. from the University of Minnesota in Hispanic literature, where she specialized in Spanish-American literatures and cultures and Latin-American history. She completed her Ph.D. in Hispanic and Luso-Brazilian literatures and cultures, with a minor in feminist studies in May 2011. Her dissertation, “Ciphering Nations: Performing Identity in Brazil and the Caribbean,” explores concepts of both cultural repression and freedom through performance arts in Latin and South American Countries. She has published her work in The Global South and Literatura e Autoritarismo.
KRCC will offer a special presentation featuring select pieces from the 2010 CC Summer Music Festival during their fundraising drive on Saturday, June 11. Beginning at 4 p.m., the NPR-member station will air pieces performed during last year’s festival. Among the selections to be aired are:
- The Overture to Die Fledermaus by Richard Strauss, performed by the Summer Music Festival Orchestra, recorded June 27, 2010.
- Sonata for violin and piano in three movements by Edvard Grieg, performed by Scott Yoo on violin and Summer Music Festival Music Director Susan Grace on piano, recorded June 17, 2010.
- Divertissement for oboe, clarinet, and bassoon by Ervin Schulhoff, with Anne Marie Gabrielle on oboe, Bill Jackson on Clarinet and Michael Kroth on bassoon, recorded June 10, 2010, at last year’s Colorado College Summer Music Festival.
Now in its 27th season, the Colorado College Summer Music Festival is an intensive three-week program for 45 advanced student musicians. Festival participants work closely with CC faculty, who spend many hours coaching small ensembles and giving private lessons and master classes. All students participate in a concert series including formal and informal chamber music concerts, five orchestra performances, including a free children’s concert, and several off-campus outreach concerts. This year’s festival runs June 6-26.
Currently, KRCC is heard in Westcliffe, Gardner, Limon, Manitou Springs, Trinidad, Buena Vista, Salida, Villa Grove, Canon City, Colorado Springs, La Junta, Raton, N.M., and globally online at www.krcc.org. Tune in to 91.5 FM to hear the broadcast.
A proposal submitted by four Colorado College students has been selected as a Davis Project for Peace for 2011.
Akie Mochizuki ’11, Nikhil Ranadive ’12, Melissa Serafin ’11 and Erin Yamamoto ’11 will spend three months working with the disenfranchised women of Ugenya, an area of impoverished subsistence farmers and sparsely distributed, ill-equipped medical facilities in Kenya.
The goal of their project, “The Zuia Initiative,” is to elevate the health of the Ugenyan people by reducing their susceptibility to HIV infection, and to improve the social and economic status of the women by expanding their employment opportunities.
The CC students will work with the women of Ugenya who, for a variety of social and cultural reasons, are particularly susceptible to the HIV/AIDS epidemic. The project seeks to provide the Ugenyan women a means of greater financial and social standing by teaching them tailoring skills, a valuable and marketable asset in their region. The Colorado College students have rented a training space and have arranged for 10 regular and two industrial tailoring machines, as well as an instructor.
In addition to the vocational training, the CC students, working with Matibabu Foundation Clinic, will present an HIV/AIDS public health curriculum for the women. The students plan to set up youth center that provides reproduction education to the boys and girls of the community.
The Davis Projects for Peace was launched in 2007 by philanthropist Kathryn W. Davis on her 100th birthday. During the summer of 2011, college students from nearly 100 campuses will collectively receive more than $1 million in funding for projects in all regions of the world. The program is designed to encourage and support students to create and implement their ideas for building peace throughout the world.
About the participants:
- Akie Mochizuki is a senior biochemistry major and has taken a service-learning course on HIV/AIDS from Neena Grover, volunteered with the Southern Colorado AIDS Project, and worked with young children as a teaching assistant.
- Erin Yamamoto is a senior neuroscience major and has organized and implemented outreach programs targeted at Colorado Springs youth.
- Nikhil Ranadive is a junior and a UWC-USA Graduate and a Davis UWC Scholar. He has experience in education, working with children, and community organizing.
- Melissa Serafin, a senior, has experience in sociological fieldwork, education, working with children, and civic engagement.