201st Session Committee Summaries

The 201st session of the Dartmouth Alumni Council opened with meetings of the Nominating and Alumni Trustee Search Committee and the Alumni Liaison Committee, followed by an orientation session for first-year councilors. 

Councilors gathered for a reception and dinner at the Common Ground in the Collis Center. Alumni Council President Tom Peisch ’70 made remarks and introduced the Rockapellas, who performed during dinner. After dinner, Peisch introduced the new director of athletics and recreation, Harry Sheehy, who addressed the Alumni Council. Sheehy spoke about his plans for athletics, and said he is focused on winning through enthusiasm, excellence, and perseverance. 

The morning started off with meetings of the Academic Affairs, Athletics, Communications, Enrollment and Admissions, and Student Affairs Committees. 

Alumni Council President Tom Peisch ’70 opened the morning plenary session and introduced Sylvia Spears, acting dean of the College. Dean Spears provided information on her division’s reorganization and strategic planning priorities for 2010-11. This will include the realignment of programs and services by function, consolidating campus life functions (residential life, dining, student activities, judicial affairs, Greek letter organizations, and outdoor programs) under one associate dean and consolidating student support functions (undergraduate deans, Office of Pluralism and Leadership, academic skills, accessibility services, and career services) under one associate dean. Consistent with the liberal arts tradition of Dartmouth College, the division builds an inclusive, thriving, and intellectually stimulating environment that fosters academic, social, cultural, and personal growth. The philosophy of the division is that comprehensive student growth and success results from student engagement and the intentional, evidence-based, collaborative design of structures, policies, practices, programs, and services.  Their vision is to be the leader in transformative co-curricular learning from orientation to graduation. Programmatic priorities are to develop new ways of ensuring academic success for all students, enhance responsiveness to students with disabilities, continue efforts to address excessive alcohol use, and improve crisis response and education regarding sexual assault. 

The social event management policy (SEMP) is being revised to include more concrete skills such as conflict management and community involvement. The new initiatives will be developed in the winter and spring of this year. To discuss the topic further, a panel was formed that included Harry Kinney, director of safety and security; Judy Doherty, director of information management systems and new media, and Hanover selectboard member; Max Yoeli ’12, student cochair of the Student and Presidential Alcohol Harm Reduction Committee; and J.B. Daukas ’84, chair of the Ad Hoc Committee to Support Greek Letter Organizations. 

Yoeli said that the initiative’s preliminary steps should be student-centered and student solutions. The Greek letter organizations bear the burdens and risks of providing social opportunities on campus, and the students want input. Judy Doherty mentioned that the Town of Hanover has formed a task force, on which there are now 30 members, to work on resources, data, and obtaining staff for addressing the issues. The group recently held a two-hour meeting, with many more to come. She said this is a tremendous opportunity to make a difference given the resources that are now in place. 

J.B. Daukas ’84 is reaching out to alumni for support. Alumni advisory boards are being formed, student presidents of Greek letter organizations are becoming involved, and the Board of Trustees’ Student Affairs Committee met with Daukas earlier in the fall term. The main drive is to engage alumni advisors and improve physical plants. The current approach of the Hanover police department is enforcement, according to Judy Doherty and Dean Spears, and there have been 212 arrests in the past year based on possession by consumption. One of the issues will be defining the role that enforcement should play. The good news is that Good Samaritan calls for help have increased since 2005; however, concerns that the focus on enforcement will deter Good Sam calls has prompted discussions between the town and the College. 

The revised SEMP will be rolled out January 5, 2011. Education about sexual assault and the effects of alcohol was discussed. More and more colleges are coming together regarding education, psychology, and assistance. 

Next on the agenda, Tom Daniels ’82, chair of the Nominating and Alumni Trustee Search Committee, gave an overview of the committee. He outlined the committee’s purpose, diversity of members, and search process, which involves the guiding principles of the committee, search criteria, due diligence and vetting, and, finally, the committee’s recommendations. (The presentation has been posted online at http:///council/CommitteeNews/NominatingandAlumniTrusteeSearch). He then announced that the committee selected Gail Koziara Boudreaux ’82 and Bill Burgess ’81 to run for trustees of Dartmouth College, and provided the following biographies:

Gail Koziara Boudreaux ’82

Gail Koziara Boudreaux ’82 is executive vice president of UnitedHealth Group and president of UnitedHealthcare. She was named one of the World’s 100 Most Powerful Women by Forbes and one of Fortune’s 50 Most Powerful Women in American Business. Boudreaux serves on the board of the Field Museum of Chicago and Genzyme Corp. She served Dartmouth as admissions interviewer, class agent, and Alumni Council representative. At Dartmouth she played basketball, ran track and field/cross country, and was a member of Green Key and Fire & Skoal. An All-American in basketball and track, she holds 12 Dartmouth records and is a member of the New England Basketball Hall of Fame and Dartmouth’s Wearers of the Green. She holds an MBA from Columbia University. She is married to Terence and has two sons.

Bill Burgess ’81

Bill Burgess ’81 is a managing partner of ABS Ventures, a venture capital firm. Throughout his career, he has worked closely with emerging growth technology companies as an investor and advisor. With his wife, Barbara, he is an active volunteer, serving as trustee and treasurer of St. Mark’s School and as chairman of the New England Aquarium. Previously, he served as a trustee of The Nature Conservancy and as an overseer and investment committee member for the Museum of Fine Arts Boston. Burgess has served Dartmouth as class president, class agent, Alumni Council representative, and reunion giving chair. He was a member of Alpha Delta, Sphinx, and Green Key, and played rugby, football, and lacrosse. He holds an MBA from Harvard Business School. He has five children.

Additional information about the 2011 Dartmouth elections can be found online at www.voxthevote.org.

Daniels then introduced Boudreaux and Burgess to the Alumni Council. The candidates addressed the council, and were available for conversation during the subsequent lunch and at the reception later that evening. 

After lunch, councilors participated in the afternoon plenary session. After some Q&A and discussion, the Alumni Council voted (89 in favor, 1 abstention) to approve these candidates to run for the two alumni-nominated trustee vacancies. 

Carrie Pelzel ’54a, senior vice president for advancement, then presented “Advancement Strategy: Your Critique and Ideas” to the council. The goals of the Advancement Division—which includes the activities of public affairs, alumni relations, development, and volunteer leadership—are to raise Dartmouth’s reputation and visibility among key audiences, inspire alumni to make Dartmouth one of their highest priorities in life, make Dartmouth a vibrant and contributing force in the lives of her graduates, and raise the maximum dollars possible for the College’s priorities. Pelzel outlined the following recent initiatives of Advancement: 

Build the team: Three key searches (for the vice presidents of Alumni Relations, Development, and Public Affairs);

Analyze where current funds are spent;

Integrate human resources/finance functions;

Build a model for strategic outreach;

Add market research and marketing functions;

Create expectations about how people work together;

Grow the Dartmouth College Funds to meet the Strategic Budget Reduction and   Investment targets;

Reimagine the reunion experience; and

Launch career and life development programs.

 After the afternoon plenary session, councilors had the opportunity to attend one of three lectures from the popular Alumni College at Reunion program. This program is offered in June, when Dartmouth faculty members present a variety of lectures to alumni attending reunions in Hanover. The following three lectures were offered to councilors:  

“Timely, Targeted, and Temporary: Three Years of Stimulus and Bailouts,” by Andrew Samwick, the Sandrea L. and Arthur L. Irving ’72a, P’10, Professor of Economics, and director of the Nelson Rockefeller Center for Public Policy and the Social Sciences; “Succession and Stability in North Korea,” by Jennifer Lind, assistant professor of government; and “The Philosophy of Everything: Being Human in an Imperfect Universe,” by Marcelo Gleiser, a professor of physics and astronomy and the Appleton Professor of Natural Philosophy. 

Following the lectures, meetings were held for the Young Alumni and Honorary Degrees Committees. 

A reception was then held at the Top of the Hop, followed by dinner in Alumni Hall.

Before dinner, Tom Peisch ’70 introduced President Jim Yong Kim ’82a, who addressed the Alumni Council on the topic of Dartmouth’s “model of innovation.” After dinner, Peisch welcomed everyone and acknowledged the past presidents of the Alumni Council who were in attendance. He then addressed the Alumni Council and presented the Dartmouth Alumni Award to Mary Thomson Renner ’82.

The Alumni Liaison Committee held a breakfast meeting with President Kim and trustees Sherri Oberg ’82, ’86Tu and Brad Evans ’64. 

President-elect Danielle Dyer ’81, ’89Tu opened the morning plenary session. Dyer introduced Provost Carol Folt ’78a and Professor Paul Argenti of the Tuck School, who gave a presentation titled “New Horizon: A Vision in Strategy Update.” Provost Folt and Professor Argenti explained that the College is beginning a two-year process to develop its next strategic plan, and asked for alumni involvement in the strategic planning as the 250th anniversary of the College approaches in 2019. Major factors in the process will include strategic planning for the faculty, relations with the community, and strategic communication. 

Next on the agenda, Trustees Brad Evans ’64 and Sherri Oberg ’82, ’86Tu provided an update from the Board of Trustees. Evans opened by thanking members of the Alumni Council for their important work. He explained that the trustees are trying to “get out more” by attending additional events across the country with clubs, etc. He provided an update on some financials and said Dartmouth is on track to have a balanced budget by next year. For facilities, the Class of 1978 Life Sciences Center is on track to be completed next year. The building will house classrooms, laboratories, an auditorium, conference rooms, and offices. In the fall of 2012, construction should be completed on the Visual Arts Center, which will create a welcoming forum for students who wish to pursue studio art, film and media studies and digital humanities programs.  

As chair of the Board of Trustees’ Alumni Relations Committee, Evans also mentioned that the annual report from the Alumni Council’s Alumni Liaison Committee was very well received by all the trustees. The Board of Trustees’ Student Affairs Committee has been focused on the Greek letter organizations, and is in the process of assisting with the recruitment of advisors for every house, thanks to the report of the Alumni Council’s Ad Hoc Committee to Support Greek Letter Organizations. 

Oberg also thanked the Alumni Council, and gave a special thanks to the Alumni Awards committee for its hard work. Reporting on the work of the Board of Trustees’ Governance Committee, Oberg pointed out that they have selected current Alumni Councilor Annette Gordon-Reed ’81 to replace Al Mulley ’70, who is now the director of the Dartmouth Center for Health Care Delivery Science. Oberg also reminded everyone that Wiley “Chip” Souba, an internationally recognized academic surgeon, was named the new dean of Dartmouth Medical School and vice president for health affairs of Dartmouth College as of October 1, 2010. Oberg closed by mentioning that President Kim continues to inspire students with his challenge to them to take on the world’s most pressing problems. 

Following the trustee presentation, Steven Kadish, executive vice president and chief financial officer, gave an update titled “Doing the Math: College Budget Report.” Kadish provided information regarding the College’s efforts to improve efficiencies and reduce costs, including the plan to tackle procurement spending and the implementation of a finance center, a highly skilled service unit dedicated to managing financial transactions for the divisions and professional schools of Dartmouth. Additionally, the annual withdrawal from the endowment will drop from 7 percent to 5.4 percent to 5 percent (closer to the historical rate), and overall expenses are budgeted to grow at 4 percent (down from an original 8 percent rate of growth). 

Dyer then announced the open microphone session. There was a vote on a constitutional amendment providing the Executive Committee with the ability to fill midterm vacancies on the Nominating Committee and addressing potential midterm vacancies for the Alumni Council president, which was unanimously approved. The committee chairs then provided their respective reports on the Academic Affairs, Athletics, Alumni Liaison, Communications, Enrollment and Admissions, Student Affairs, and Young Alumni Committees. 

There were no comments made during the open microphone session, nor was there any new business. 

The meeting was adjourned.