Momentum builds at host city
An enthusiastic and committed group of alums and parents joined forces tonight to host the Boston Launch celebration of Campaign for the Colleges, which seeks to raise $160 million to fulfill priorities established in the Colleges’ strategic planning initiatives.
Held at the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum, the evening celebration was kicked off as Board Chair David H. Deming ’75 welcomed the gathering of alumni, alumnae, parents, faculty, staff, students, and supporters of the Colleges.
“There’s universal agreement among those close to the Colleges that our momentum has brought us to the threshold of a new level of possibility,” said Deming, praising the $94 million that has already been committed and the success of recent celebrations on campus and in New York City.
The Campaign has a facilities goal of $65 million for on-campus improvements, including creating a Performing Arts Center, refurbishing and expanding the Scandling Center, renovating and expanding athletics facilities, and renewing a commitment to cutting-edge Information Technology Services.
Another $65 million will be sought for the Colleges’ endowment to provide scholarships and internships for students and endowed professorships for faculty members, and to ensure the future of distinctive programs, such as global education. In addition, the campaign will recognize the first 100 years of William Smith College, 1908-2008.
Mara O’Laughlin ’66, assistant vice president for the William Smith Centennial, extolled the merits of the Centennial Center for Leadership, a component of the Campaign. To be established and endowed by a $7 million commitment from the women of William Smith, the Center will support scholarships and fellowships for students, and will establish a leadership chair to bring a distinguished woman to be in residence on campus as a resource to all of our students and faculty.
The program was highlighted by reflections from Boston area alums Joseph Corcoran Jr. ’79, president and CEO of Impact Performance Group Inc.; Deborah Piltch ’83, compliance officer and attorney for Maloney Properties; Wayne Lawrence ’77, director, investment banking for Barclays Capital; and Cynthia Gelsthorpe Fish ’82, member of the William Smith Centennial Fund Committee. Current students Adam Chaput ’07 and Maggi Sliwinski ’07 also shared stories of how the Colleges have transformed their lives.
Concluding the event, Hobart and William Smith President Mark D. Gearan offered his vision for the future and thanked the impressive group of alums from the Boston area who shared their stories.
“As I start my eighth year as President, I have seen the power of a Hobart and William Smith education. Joe Corcoran, Debbie Piltch, Adam Chaput, Cyndy Gelsthorpe Fish, Wayne Lawrence and Maggi Sliwinski all spoke forcefully about their experiences at the Colleges. Their success and lives of consequence is first and foremost a reflection on their hard work, engaged minds and strong character and integrity,” Gearan said. “But it also says a great deal about Hobart and William Smith Colleges. It says that we’re a community committed to excellence in the liberal arts.”
The 18-member committee that organized the event includes three Trustees of the Colleges—Susan Albert Athas ’75, Carolyn Carr McGuire ’78 and Barbara Tornow ’65—and Eric Hall Anderson ’59, Daniel Beckman ’84, Christian Coffin ’83, Worth Douglas ’67, Cynthia Gelsthorpe Fish ’82, Christopher Flanagan ’67 and Mary Flanagan ’69, Abigail Johnson ’84, Terrance McGuire ’78, Gail Carpenter Palmer ’91, Craig Stevens ’85, Joseph Tully ’88, Susan Rock Tully ’88, Christopher Welles ’84 and Catherine Whitney Welles ’83.