August 11, 2008

Volume 2, issue 49 August 11, 2008
The Fountain

Pete Reid celebrates a youthful 85 Pete Reid

“Being 85… ‘ain’t’ so bad,” said Pete Reid ’49, assistant to the president, as he celebrated his 85th birthday Wednesday, Aug. 7 (a day early). Surrounded by a jovial group that included his wife, Hedda Reid ’49, and several dozen friends and coworkers from Memorial, Reid was handed a memory book decorated with a Vintage 1923 wine label before being serenaded with the traditional “Happy Birthday.” “You make it look easy,” said Peter Harvey, treasurer and chief financial officer. Decorations for the occasion included several bouquets of golden wheat to celebrate Reid’s long-time status as “Mr. Whitman Farms.” He calculated that about a half a bushel of winter wheat was represented in the decorations; it came from the Casper Farm, which had an above-average year — as did Pete!

Committee positions offer opportunities to help

In the spirit of collaboration that helps define Whitman, and with the thought that we never know where the next great idea may come from, the college in inviting staff to volunteer for positions on either of two critical groups: the Fringe Benefits Committee or the President’s Budget Advisory Committee.

The Fringe Benefits Committee is seeking five staff volunteers for two-year terms, beginning September 2008. The purpose of the committee is to review existing employee benefit programs and make recommendations to Human Resources for the improvement, addition or deletion of programs. As a regular part of its work, the committee reviews the cost, utilization and efficiency of the health programs. Last year, work of the committee included the enhanced vision care benefit and the shared leave program and developed and implemented guidelines for the committee itself. This year the committee is expanding from six to eight members to provide better representation and plans to meet monthly. Three current committee members are returning: Gary D’Agostino, boiler technician/plumber; Ginni Delevan, assistant custodial supervisor; and Marilyn Ponti, assistant director of financial aid services, who says “This committee is very devoted to working hard and making changes that will benefit the staff. Please consider joining us. It’s personally rewarding, and you’ll be serving your colleagues in a very critical way.”

If you have questions or are interested in signing up, please e-mail HR Director Cindy Matern by Friday, Aug. 15. Committee members will be appointed by the President’s Council to represent a diverse cross-section of the staff.

The President’s Budget Advisory Committee is charged with giving feedback on budget requests and on the top priorities of the College. In addition to considering requests for funding new initiatives the committee advises President Bridges on tuition increases, the level of financial aid awarded, compensation, and fringe benefits pools for faculty and staff. The committee provides feedback on maintaining a balance between keeping tuition affordable and providing the resources needed to continue to strengthen Whitman’s programs and services.

There are two openings for staff representatives who will serve three-year terms. The committee meets weekly in the fall semester and is comprised of four students, four staff, four faculty, the treasurer and provost. Staff interested in serving on the Budget Advisory Committee may send questions and/or self-nominations to Treasurer Peter Harvey by Friday, Aug. 15. Committee members will be selected by Harvey, Provost Lori Bettison-Varga and Faculty Chair Tim Kaufman-Osborn to provide a balanced representation of the staff.

Whitman Magazine now more accessible online

Whitman Magazine

Until now, the Whitman Magazine has been posted online in PDF format. Thanks to the efforts of Phil Thompson, Web content specialist, and Lana Brown, editor/associate director of communications, the magazine site content now is in HTML, meaning it’s more searchable and easier to access and use. The site features the cover of the current issue with access to past issues below. The left navigation column lists the sections of the magazine, such as Features, Campus News, In Their Words and more. To the right of the cover are titles of feature articles, providing one-click access. Another highlight of the new site is an expanded photo gallery. “There’s never enough room to include all the photos that help tell the stories,” says Brown, “so we’ve added a gallery section to expand the visual storytelling.” The Whitman Magazine site is easily accessible from the faculty and staff portals or bookmark

Going Green in the Ivy Halls

The National Association of Independent Colleges and Universities (NAICU) has collected and published an impressive list of campus green initiatives on its website. To see what’s being done across the country, and how Whitman’s green initiatives stack up, visit the NAICU Web site.

Whitman College
In This Issue
Pete Reid Turns 85
Committee Openings
Whitman Magazine
Green Initiatives

Past issues

The Fountain is published by the Office of Communications. Send news to Editor Lenel Parish at Photos are accepted. Submissions are due by Tuesday at 5 p.m. for the following week's issue. Director of Communications: Ruth Wardwell. Online: