“As you leave on Sunday, you need to take a piece of Hobart and William Smith with you,” former Assembly leader Paul A. Tokasz '69' P'89 told the Hobart seniors gathered on the Bozzuto dock Tuesday evening.
The engraved wooden paddles that he and Interim Dean Eugen Baer then presented to each of the seniors became one of those pieces. Each senior then dipped his paddle into the waters of Seneca Lake before returning to the Bozzuto Boat House for the rest of the ceremony.
Tokasz, a former state Assembly majority leader, also reminded the group that they were joining a symbolic “fraternity of 10,000 alums.”
After serving in the state Assembly for 18 years, Tokasz retired in early January 2007 and was named a partner in the Buffalo office of Patricia Lynch Associates, a governmental affairs and media relations firm.
Also speaking at this year's launch were Student Trustee Adam Chaput '07, who introduced Baer as an honorary member of the class; Baer, who called the Class of 2007 “my first love,” because it was his first in the dean's chair; and Jared Weeden '91, director of Alumni Relations.
Weeden urged the newest members of the Alumni Association to get involved in regional events, become reunion volunteers, career mentors, admissions volunteers, and to “wear your Hobart hat proudly.”
The Rev. Lesley Adams, chaplain' offered the benediction, and Hobart cigars, compliments of Bill '85 and Larry '92 Sherman of the Nat Sherman Cigar Co. were distributed, as were letters the men wrote to themselves four years ago during Orientation.