September 22, 2005
Vol. 25 No. 1

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    University’s alumni ‘ambassadors’ gather with leaders of institution for inaugural Chicago Leadership Caucus

    By William Harms
    News Office

    Left to right, James Crown, Chairman of the Board of Trustees, and University Trustees Valerie Jarrett and Dennis Keller sat on a panel to discuss University initiatives with alumni members and volunteers at the inaugural Chicago Leadership Caucus.

    Robert Fefferman, Dean of the Physical Sciences Division, delivered one of the talks at the first Chicago Leadership Caucus held last weekend at International House.

    Members of the alumni community who volunteer their time and expertise to serving the University had an opportunity to engage in the inaugural Chicago Leadership Caucus on Friday, Sept. 16 and Saturday, Sept. 17. A group of about 140 volunteers attended the two-day event, which featured tours, talks on current University initiatives and supportive workshops on leadership development.

    “This event gives us a chance to bring together alumni and others from throughout the University community,” said Christine O’Neill Singer, Associate Vice President for Development & Alumni Relations and Executive Director of the Alumni Association.

    “The caucus provides us an opportunity to develop ideas into a consistent set of messages.”

    Those attending the event were alumni, alumni club volunteers; current and former members of the Alumni Board of Governors; members of the Visiting Committee; chairs of the Alumni Schools Committee; Reunion volunteers; CAPS volunteers; and volunteers from the Law School, the School of Social Service Administration, the Biological Sciences Division, the Irving B. Harris Graduate School of Public Policy Studies and the Laboratory Schools.

    “These volunteers are very important to us. They are our ambassadors to the larger community and they keep alive the important values we share about the University,” said Singer. “They provide us important support in many ways, and this event is a way of recognizing their service as well,” she added.

    The event began with tours of Hyde Park and the Smart Museum of Art, followed by a lunch with James Crown, Chairman of the Board of Trustees, and then a brief presentation by deans and directors who shared their personal views of the University’s academic programs.

    In the spirit of this personalized look at University programs, the group continued its work Friday afternoon with sessions on the University’s initiatives with local schools, budgeting procedures, liberal education, scientific research, the arts on campus and the changing resource needs of students.

    Before breaking for dinner, Crown led a panel discussion with other University Trustees and the participants, and the event concluded with workshop sessions on fund-raising, organizing reunions and volunteering for College admissions on Saturday, Sept. 17.