The Gordon Scribner Award was created to honor Gordon Scribner '42, former dean of students and director of alumni, upon his retirement. The award is given by the Alumni Association to persons who have made a major contribution of volunteer time and effort to Whitman College over an extended period of time and possess the ability to inspire. Any alumnus/alumna or friend of the College is eligible for this award. There are no restrictions regarding board involvement.
2004 Gordon Scribner Award for
Distinguished Service Recipient
Robert S. Ball '64, is a long-time volunteer for Whitman College. From reunion chair to overseer, to chair of the presidential search committee and trustee, Ball has served his alma mater with distinction.
A member of the Whitman College Board of Overseers from 1986-1992, he has been an instrumental leader as Vice Chair of the Western Oregon Region, Chair of the Academic Affairs Committee, Chair of the Development Committee, and member of the Investment Committee and the Building and Grounds Committee. In 1992, he was appointed as Trustee of the College, and he chaired the Board of Trustees from 2000 to 2002.
Ball led the presidential search committee that hired Tom Cronin. Louis Perry, former president of Whitman College who nominated Ball for the award, stated that he "conducted the most efficient, rapid and thorough search I have experienced."
He has twice served as Reunion Chair for the Class of 1964 and he, along with his wife Julie Sims Ball '64, have hosted numerous receptions in their home for Whitman College.
After receiving his law degree, Ball engaged in private practice in Portland, Oregon in the areas of business, real estate and land use law. In 1982, he joined in the formation of Ball Janik LLP. His practice is now concentrated on business and real estate transactions. He is involved in structuring corporate, partnership and real estate transactions and advising clients in those areas.
Ball is actively involved in both his profession and in the community. In his profession he is a former member of The Executive Committee of the Real Estate and Land Use Section of the Oregon State Bar; he was co-editor of an authoritative treatise entitled Real Property (Oregon State Bar, 5 Volumes); he was Organizer of the Law in the 90s Conference (Oregon State Bar). He has also served on the following Oregon State Bar Committees: Chair, Continuing Legal Education Committee; Chair, Future of the Legal Profession Committee; Member, Legal Ethics Committee. Mr. Ball has participated as an organizer of and speaker at numerous Oregon State Bar and Oregon Law Institute continuing legal education programs and seminars on real estate law, real estate transactions, finance, tax planning, construction law, condominium law, partnership law, and structuring of joint ventures. In 1995 he received the President's Membership Service Award from the Oregon State Bar in recognition of his many years of service to the Bar.
Ball's community activities have included: Tigard Planning Commission; Chair, Portland Metropolitan Boundary Commission; Chairman of the Board of Oregon Public Broadcasting; Board Member, National Multiple Sclerosis Society, Oregon Chapter; Member, American College of Real Estate Lawyers; Board Member, University of California School of Law (Boalt Hall) Alumni Association; Board Member, The Nature Conservancy of Oregon; Member of the Portland State University Foundation Real Estate Task Force; and Member of the Regional Blue Ribbon Committee on Housing Resource Development, Affordable Housing Task Force. Since 1986 he has been selected for inclusion in "Best Lawyers in America," recognition bestowed on the top 1% of the nation's attorneys.