Lawrence University Honors Six Alumni for Exemplary Service, Distinguished Achievement at Reunion Weekend Celebration

For nearly 40 years, Appleton’s Austin Boncher life’s work has been music to the ears of generations of Fox Valley arts lovers.

As an educator, mentor, administrator, passionate advocate and driving force behind such notable area organizations as the White Heron Chorale and Fox Valley Symphony, his legacy has continued to resonate throughout the Fox Valley arts community long after his retirement.

Boncher will be one of six Lawrence University graduates recognized Saturday June 21 for their accomplishments and service as part of the college’s annual Reunion Weekend celebration.

More than 1,000 alumni and guests from 39 states and six foreign countries, including China and Russia, are expected to return to Appleton for a series of weekend long activities on the Lawrence campus. Five alumni will be recognized with service awards and one will be receive a distinguished achievement award during the annual reunion convocation Saturday at 11:10 a.m. in the Lawrence Memorial Chapel.

Boncher and David Hoffman, Milwaukee, will each receive the George B. Walter Service to Society Award. Established in 1997 in honor of the late George Walter, a Lawrence graduate and education professor from 1946-75, the award recognizes contributions to socially useful ends in the community.

A 1963 graduate of Lawrence, Boncher devoted his life to developing arts programs in the Fox Valley. From 1963-70, he served as choral director at Xavier High School and Einstein Junior High School and as band director at Menasha High School before becoming the Appleton Area School District’s director of music and later supervisor of music and fine arts, a position he held until his retirement in 1998.

During his 28 years with the Appleton school district, Boncher wrote dozens of grants to bring performances of operas, ballets, instrumental and theatre groups to elementary schools, organized summer school music lessons and initiated a Suzuki pilot program. At the time of his retirement, all but one of the music teachers in the school district had been hired and mentored by Boncher.

His influence extended well beyond classroom as well, helping to change the face of the local arts community. Boncher founded the Fox Valley Symphony Chorale and the Fox Valley Youth Symphony and was one of the founders of the White Heron Chorale, the Appleton Boychoir and the Fox Valley Symphony, all of which are still thriving today.

The Fox Valley Arts Alliance honored Boncher in 1993 with its Renaissance Award for his contributions to the arts. And earlier this year, Boncher was recognized with Thrivent FinancialĀ¹s Hanns Kretschmar Award for Excellence in the Arts for his role in “Sing for the Cure,” a musical production to benefit breast-cancer research.

Hoffman, a 1957 Lawrence graduate, dedicated his life to helping families in need. For 38 years — including 28 as its president — Hoffman served Family Service of Milwaukee, the oldest and largest nonprofit, nonsectarian family-support organization in Wisconsin, serving more than 10,000 children and adults each year. He retired from Family Service in December, 2000.

Under his leadership, Family Service grew from a staff of 30 to more than 200. Hoffman expanded the organization’s mission to include a vast array of family support programs, including a training institute for marriage and family therapists, an employee assistance program and a credit counseling service. In 1995, Hoffman established an affiliation with Aurora Health Care that doubled Family Service’s capacity for serving low-income families and the elderly.

A member of the American Association of Marriage and Family Therapy and a former president of the Association of Child Psychotherapists, Hoffman convened the Wisconsin Association of Marriage and Family Counselors and served as the organization’s first president. He was twice appointed by Governor Thompson to the Wisconsin State Council on Mental Health.

Terry Moran, Washington, D.C., who has covered the White House for ABC News the past four years, will receive Lawrence’s Lucia R. Briggs Distinguished Achievement Award, which recognizes outstanding contributions and accomplishments in a chosen field.

A 1982 graduate of Lawrence, Moran’s career has been a palette of late 20th- and early 21st-century social history. He began his journalism career as a writer for The New Republic magazine before joining Legal Times, where he covered the Supreme Court as a reporter and later served as the publication’s assistant managing editor. In 1992, he moved to the fledgling cable channel Court TV, where as a correspondent and anchor he covered some of the nation’s highest profile stories, including the murder trials of O.J. Simpson and Lyle and Erik Menendez as well as the Clarence Thomas/Anita Hill Supreme Court hearings.

Moran joined ABC News as the network’s legal correspondent in 1998, where he reported on the trial of Dr. Jack Kevorkian, the “Unabomber” Ted Kaczynski and the Microsoft anti-trust case. A story on a reunion of dozens of former death-row inmates who were freed when evidence came to light proving their innocence that Moran covered for ABC’s “Nightline” earned him the Thurgood Marshall Journalism Award from the Death Penalty Information Center.

In September, 1999, Moran was named ABC News White House correspondent, where he currently covers all aspects of the Bush administration for “World News Tonight,” “Good Morning America” and other ABC News broadcasts.

Jonathan Bauer, Glen Ellyn, Ill., Michael Cisler, Neenah, and Priscilla Hausmann, West Bend, will each be presented the Gertrude B. Jupp Outstanding Service Award for exemplary dedication, leadership, commitment and volunteerism to Lawrence.

Bauer, a 1983 graduate, is a former president of the Lawrence alumni association board of directors. During his two years as board president, Bauer initiated the Career Contact Program, which connects Lawrence alumni to current students seeking answers to career-oriented questions and founded a student activity grant to support campus activities that enhance student life. A partner in Deloitte Consulting’s telecommunication/information technology business, Bauer has maintained an active relationship with Lawrence’s Career Center, participating in numerous mentoring and networking activities.

Cisler, the president and chief executive officer of Greenville’s JanSport, Inc., has served his alma mater in a variety of volunteer capacities since earning a bachelor of music degree in 1978. After serving seven years as a member of the alumni association board of directors, he spent two years as a member of the 2000 Board of Trustees commissioned Task Force on Residential Life that conducted an in-depth review of all aspects of undergraduate residential life at Lawrence. Cisler is a member of the current Presidential Search Committee that is seeking a successor to President Richard Warch, who will retire in June, 2004.

Energy, infectious goodwill and attention to detail have been the trademarks of Hausmann’s long and varied volunteer service to Lawrence. A 1953 graduate of the conservatory of music who now teaches piano and serves as her church’s organist, Hausmann spent six years as a member of the alumni association board of directors and served as class secretary for 17 years. In addition, she has been a long-time volunteer for the Lawrence admissions office.

Lawrence Academy of Music Awarded NEA Grant to Expand Jazz Education Efforts

The Lawrence Academy of Music has been awarded a $28,000 arts education grant by the National Endowment of the Arts to support its growing jazz education programs for area youths.

The NEA grant will support the Academy of Music’s summer Jazz Odyssey program — a five-day camp that begins July 21 — as well as two new initiatives that will begin this fall. In September, the Academy of Music will launch both a new after school jazz program and a Saturday morning jazz component designed to enhance current school music experiences and provide creative new opportunities.

Both programs will be open to area students in grades 6-12 who are currently playing an instrument or singing. Led by a staff of three or more instructors, the two new programs will feature specialized offerings in the history of jazz and its Afrocentric roots, jazz improvisation and composition and small-group combo performance experiences.

Fred Snyder, director of the Lawrence Academy of Music, is hoping to attract 25-40 students for both the after-school and Saturday morning programs, which he said will be designed to augment, rather than compete with, music programs currently offered in area schools.

“Jazz is extremely popular in this area and we’re very excited about the possibilities this difficult-to-come-by NEA grant will provide,” said Snyder.

“We’re confident the launch of these two new initiatives targeting area middle and high school jazzophiles will provide them with the kind of opportunities that aren’t currently available elsewhere in the Fox Valley. One of the reasons we even applied for this grant was as a response from area school music educators who were asking us for this kind of assistance. We’re hoping these new jazz programs can help meet some of those needs.”

The Lawrence Academy of Music was one of only four Wisconsin arts organizations awarded a grant by the NEA for 2003 in the organization’s arts education category.

Founded in 1874 as a division of the Lawrence University Conservatory of Music, the Lawrence Academy of Music provides personalized music instruction to community residents. Originally established as the Preparatory Program, it became known as the Lawrence Arts Academy in 1990. Last summer, it changed its name to the Lawrence Academy of Music to better define its role as a music education provider.

Featuring a staff of close to 50 music specialists, the Academy of Music serves nearly 1,900 area students ranging in age from six months to 18 years old through a variety of enrichment and instructional programs, including early childhood music, private instrument lessons and classes in music theory, voice and chamber music.

The Academy also sponsors eight ensembles, including five girl choirs, two bands and a string orchestra. Its summer Odyssey program features a series of day camps that explore topics on music fundamentals, creative dramatics, singing, eurhythmics, creative writing, visual arts and more.

Lawrence University Mathematician, Classicist Recognized for Teaching Excellence

Lawrence University recognized professors Richard Sanerib and Randall McNeill for their teaching contributions Sunday at the college’s 154th commencement.

Sanerib, associate professor of mathematics, received Lawrence’s Excellence in Teaching Award, given annually to a faculty member for “outstanding performance in the teaching process, including the quest to ensure students reach their full development as individuals, human beings and future leaders of society.”

McNeill, assistant professor of classics, was presented the Outstanding Young Teacher Award in recognition of demonstrated excellence in the classroom and the promise of continued growth.

A specialist in logic, algebra and topology, Sanerib joined the Lawrence mathematics department in 1976. Among the courses he teaches are calculus, foundations of algebra and graph theory while his research interests include the history of mathematics.

Sanerib, who recieved Lawrence’s Young Teacher Award in 1979, is one of only four faculty members to receive both teaching honors in the 29-year history of the two awards.

In presenting the award, Lawrence President Richard Warch hailed Sanerib as the type of teacher “parents hope their children will encounter in college.”

“You fill the classroom with an infectious passion for mathematics and then fill your office hours with the sage and thoughtful guidance of a caring mentor,” Warch said. “Outside the classroom, you are at perfectly scripted times coach, cheerleader, wise counselor, psychologist, quiet listener and good friend. When students need to look into themselves, you hold up the mirror.”

A native of Boston, Sanerib earned a bachelor’s degree in mathematics at St. AnselmĀ¹s College and his doctorate in mathematics at the University of Colorado.

McNeill, who joined the Lawrence classics department in 1999, is a specialist in Latin poetry, particularly the work of Roman poet Horace, as well as Greek and Roman history.

His 2001 book, “Horace: Image, Identity and Audience,” examines the techniques Horace used to depict his personal existence and how those techniques influenced, and were adapted by, later Roman poets.

Warch cited McNeill’s passion, energy and enthusiasm for the classical languages in presenting him the award.

“Your classes are like the Lawrence hockey games you love to watch — fast and furious — and that’s why your students get caught up in all the excitement,” Warch said. “Your lectures are stimulating, engaging and entertaining and they are complemented by comprehensive study guides that you faithfully and laboriously prepare for your students. Whether it’s a vexing grammatical challenge or an historical conundrum, your explanations are always down-to-earth and right on the mark.”

Born and raised in Chicago, McNeill earned a bachelor’s degree in classics at Harvard University and his Ph.D. in classics at Yale University.

Fox Cities Community Leaders, Acclaimed Historian, Noted Record Producer Receiving Honorary Degrees at Lawrence University’s 154th Commencement

Two well-known and widely admired Fox Cities community leaders, one of the country’s most celebrated scholars of American colonial history and the founder of the world’s largest contemporary blues record label will be recognized for their achievements with honorary degrees from Lawrence University Sunday, June 15 during the college’s 154th commencement.

Lawrence will award an honorary doctor of laws to Oscar Boldt, chairman of The Boldt Group, and his wife, community volunteer Patricia Boldt, an honorary doctor of humane letters to acclaimed Yale University historian Edmund Morgan and an honorary doctor of music to award-winning record producer Bruce Iglauer.

In addition, Lawrence will confer 279 bachelor’s degrees during commencement exercises, which begin at 10:30 a.m. in the Main Hall Green. A baccalaureate service, featuring Peter Fritzell, professor of English, will be held Saturday, June 14 at 11 a.m. in the Lawrence Memorial Chapel. Both events are free and open to the public.

All four honorary degree recipients, along with Lawrence President Richard Warch, Lawrence Board of Trustees Chair Jeffrey Riester and student representative Tetteh Otuteye, a senior from Accra, Ghana, will address the graduates during commencement.

Born and raised in Appleton, Oscar Boldt has spent more than 50 years with the family construction business. Under his leadership, first as chief operating officer, later as president, then as chief executive officer and finally as company chairman, Oscar J. Boldt Construction Co. has grown into the largest contracting and construction management firm in Wisconsin and one of the nation’s top 75 general contractors. The firm earned national recognition in 1995 after playing a key role in the rescue operations following the bombing of the Murrah Federal Building in Oklahoma City.

During his decades-long tenure as a business and civic leader, Oscar Boldt has served as president of the board of directors of the Appleton Medical Center, the Appleton Area Chamber of Commerce, the Appleton Family YMCA, the Community Foundation for the Fox Valley Region, Inc., and the Appleton Rotary Club.

He also has served as a member of the Lawrence Board of Trustees as well as the board of directors of M & I Bank, Valley Bank, Midwest Express Airlines, the Boy Scouts of America – Valley Council and Pierce Manufacturing, among others.

The recipient of Ernst & Young’s Master Entrepreneur of the Year Award in 1991, Oscar Boldt was inducted as a charter member into the Appleton West High School Hall of Fame (Class of 1942) in 1999 and the following year he was inducted into Appleton’s Paper Industry International Hall of Fame. Earlier this year, he was honored as a member of the Wisconsin Business Hall of Fame. A 1948 graduate of the University of Wisconsin, his alma mater recognized him with its Distinguished Alumni Award in 1999.

Patricia Boldt, a 1948 graduate of Lawrence, has developed a reputation as a woman who never says “no” when it comes to getting involved in meaningful community projects.

Since moving to the Fox Cites to attend Lawrence in the mid-1940s from Ontonagon, Mich., Patricia Boldt has been a tireless advocate, volunteer and mentor for countless area organizations. She has served as president of the Infant Welfare Circle since 1974, spent six years (1970-76) as president of the board of the United Way as well as serving on the board of directors of the Salvation Army, the Fox Valley Symphony and the Girl Scouts.

In addition, she has devoted volunteer time with LEAVEN, Meals on Wheels, Friends of the Appleton Library, Mosquito Hill Nature Center and the Lawrence Alumni Board of Directors and Founders Club. From 1974-82, she served as a member of the St. Olaf College Board of Regents.

Her generous efforts have been recognized with numerous honors and awards, including 2002’s Paul and Elaine Groth Mentoring Award, Aid Association for Lutheran’s prestigious Walter Rugland Community Service Award in 1988, which she shared with her husband, Oscar, and the St. Olaf Regents Award in 1993.

Morgan, the Sterling Professor of History Emeritus at Yale, is widely considered one of America’s most distinguished historians. His award-winning body of work includes more than a dozen books, among them “Inventing the People: The Rise of Popular Sovereignty in England and America,” which won Columbia University’s Bancroft Prize, and “American Slavery, American Freedom,” which was honored with prizes from the Society of American Historians and the American Historical Association.

Two of his early books, “Birth of the Republic” (1956) and “The Puritan Dilemma” (1958) have been required reading in many school history courses for decades. Among Morgan’s other works are biographies of Ezra Stiles and Roger Williams and a book on George Washington.

His most recent book, “Benjamin Franklin,” which he wrote at the age of 86, has been critically heralded as one of the best short biographies of Franklin ever published. It was a finalist for the 2002 National Book Critics Circle Award.

In 2000, President Clinton awarded Morgan one of the most prestigious honors among his many awards: a National Humanities Medal. One of the country’s highest civilian honors, it recognizes distinguished individuals who have made “extraordinary contributions to American cultural life and thought.”

Morgan retired from the Yale faculty in 1986 after a 31-year teaching career. The honorary degree from Lawrence will be Morgan’s 10th honorary doctorate.

Iglauer, who earned a bachelor’s degree in theatre and drama from Lawrence in 1969, turned a passion for the blues and a burning desire to record his favorite band into the world’s largest and most successful contemporary blues recording company.

In 1971, at the age of 23, Iglauer single-handedly founded Alligator Records, an independent label based in his one-room Chicago apartment, with the intent to make one album, a recording of Hound Dog Taylor and the Houserockers, his favorite group. He recorded the group live in a studio over two nights, producing a direct-to-two-track master tape and paid to have 1000 copies of the album pressed.

Since that initial recording, Iglauer has helped Alligator Records produce more than 200 titles and win more awards than any other blues label. Alligator recordings have garnered 32 Grammy Award nominations, winning twice (1982 and 1986), 18 Indie Awards from the Association for Independent Music and three Grand Prix du Disque awards. Alligator and its artists also have captured a total of 72 W.C. Handy Blues Awards, the blues community’s highest honor.

Iglauer is the co-founder of Living Blues, America’s oldest blues magazine, and is a three-term president of the Blues Music Association, which he also founded. He has been honored with a Lifetime Achievement Award from the Montreux Jazz Festival and was inducted into the Blues Hall of Fame in 1997. Last year, Iglauer was recognized by Chicago Magazine with its “Chicagoan of the Year” award.

State Teachers Cited as Outstanding Educators at Lawrence University Commencement

Paul Bucheger of Seymour and Robert Chesney of Cedarburg will be recognized as outstanding educators Sunday, June 15 by Lawrence University at the college’s 154th commencement.

Bucheger, at teacher at Seymour High School, and Chesney, who teaches at Ozaukee High School, will be presented annual Lawrence’s Outstanding Teaching in Wisconsin Award as part of the day’s celebration.

Established in 1985, the teaching award recognizes Wisconsin secondary school teachers for education excellence. Recipients are nominated by Lawrence seniors who attended high school in Wisconsin. They are selected on their abilities to communicate effectively, create a sense of excitement in the classroom, motivate their students to pursue academic excellence while showing a genuine concern for them in as well as outside the classroom.

Bucheger and Chesney, the 39th and 40th teachers honored in the program’s 19-year history, each will receive a certificate, a citation and a monetary award.

Bucheger has taught physics and mathematics at Seymour High School since 1987, developing a respected reputation for his classroom creativity and practical, real-life applications of often intimidating subject matter for his students.

In nominating him for the award, Lawrence senior Mark Schmoll cited Bucheger’s communication skills, his ability to generate excitement about the subject matter and his genuine concern for students.

“All students learn best in slightly different ways and Mr. Bucheger is second to none when it comes to realizing this,” Schmoll wrote in his nomination. “He always finds ways to communicate the curriculum to each individual in the class. Excitement in the classroom is not only generated by the numerous fun activities that students have the opportunity to participate in, but by Mr. Bucheger’s own excitement for the material and for teaching.”

In addition to his teaching duties, Bucheger has been a long-time volunteer coach with the Seymour Middle School wrestling program.

A native of Greenwood, Bucheger earned his bachelor’s degree in physics and mathematics at the UW-Eau Claire and a master’s degree in education at Viterbo University.

Chesney began his teaching career in 1978 at Ozaukee High School where he teaches English, literary analysis, research writing and AP literature.

His innovative use of technology in his classes has earned Chesney numerous awards, including Time Warner’s Teaching Creatively with Cable Gold Award in 1999, 2001 and 2002. He also was named recipient of Time Warner’s Crystal Apple National Teacher Award in 1999 and 2001.

Chesney “motivates students with his flair for adding uncommon elements to the classroom,” senior Michelle Ansay wrote in nominating her former teacher for the award. “From the very early days of ‘the Web,’ Mr. Chesney has strongly encouraged responsible use of internet resources. After a few years of exploring such resources, he began to dabble in creating resources of his own and he brought his students with him on the journey.”

The faculty advisor to the school newspaper, Chesney was named the Journalism Advisor of the Year in 1999 by the Kettle Moraine Press Association. He serves as a coach of the school forensics team and is the author of numerous published articles in “Quill and Scroll” “Tech Learning” and “The Well Connected Educator,” among others.

Chesney earned his bachelor’s degree in English at the UW-Oshkosh and his master’s degree in English literature at Marquette University.

Lawrence University Geologist Elected Fellow of Geological Society

Lawrence University Professor of Geology Marcia Bjornerud has been elected a Fellow of the Geological Society of America. The prestigious honor is awarded to GSA members who have had at least eight years of professional experience in geology or related fields and who have made “significant contributions” to the science of geology.

Bjornerud was one of 50 Fellows elected at the GSA’s recent annual meeting. Only seven percent of GSA’s current 2,684 fellows are women. Fellowship status is accorded for life.

A specialist in tectonics and structural geology, Bjornerud joined the Lawrence faculty in 1995 and has served as the department chair since 1998. She also directs Lawrence’s environmental studies program.

In 2000, Bjornerud was awarded a Fulbright Scholars Program grant to conduct field research in Norway, investigating the role fluids play in fault zones at different crustal levels. She also has carried out field studies in areas of the Canadian high Arctic, as well as Ontario and northern Wisconsin. Her research integrates field observations with quantitative analysis and computer modeling.

The National Science Foundation named Bjornerud one of its “distinguished scholars” for its Visiting Professorships for Women Program in 1996 and she serves on the editorial board of the Journal of Geoscience Education.

Bjornerud is the author of the nontraditional introductory geology textbook “Guide to the Blue Planet,” which is based on the premise that all students, as earthlings, should know how their planet works. She also contributed the essay “Natural science, natural resources and the nature of Nature” to the book “The Earth Around Us,” which was published in March, 2000. She earned her Ph.D. in geology at the University of Wisconsin.

“This is a well-deserved honor for Marcia and Lawrence is obviously pleased to bask in the reflected glory of her election as a GSA Fellow,” said Lawrence President Richard Warch. “She has not only made significant contributions to the science of geology, but has provided exceptional leadership to the department here, as well as to our new and burgeoning program in environmental studies.”

Bjornerud’s election as a GSA Fellow continues Lawrence’s long-standing tradition of exceptional geologists. She becomes the fourth Lawrence faculty member to be recognized as a GSA Fellow, joining John Palmquist (1970), William Read (1952) and Rufus Bagg (1896).

Founded in 1888, the Geological Society of America is a scientific society with more than 17,500 members that fosters the human quest for understanding Earth, planets and life, catalyzes new scientific ways of thinking about natural systems and applies geoscience knowledge and insight to human needs and stewardship of the Earth.

Lawrence Geology Major Cited for Presentation at Institute Annual Meeting

Lawrence University senior Amy Garbowicz was honored with a “Best Paper Award” for her presentation at the recent 49th annual Institute on Lake Superior Geology in Iron Mountain, Mich.

A geology major from Three Lakes, Garbowicz was one of more than 20 student presenters, most of whom were graduate students from major research institutions, to deliver a technical paper at the Institute’s annual meeting. She was one of three students cited with a “best paper” award, which included a monetary prize of $150.

Garbowicz delivered a talk on her research on mineralized slip striae on ancient fault surfaces in rocks related to the one billion year-old Mid-continent Rift, a geological system similar to the East African Rift. She has been investigating the reasons why this rift stopped from splitting North America in two. Her research in northern Wisconsin provides new insights into the causes of copper mineralization in the Keweenaw peninsula, which is part of the Mid-continent Rift.

The Institute on Lake Superior Geology is a non-profit professional society that convenes once each year in either the United States or Canada, providing a forum for the exchange of geological ideas and scientific data and promoting better understanding of the Precambrian geology of the Lake Superior region.

UW Political Scientist Discusses Corruption in China in Lawrence University Address

Fourteen years to the day that the Chinese government used armed force against demonstrators in Beijing’s Tiananmen Square, a scholar of contemporary China discusses the societal problems widespread corruption is causing the country and the difficult choices facing China’s leaders in an address at Lawrence University.

Melanie Manion, associate professor of affairs and associate director of the La Follette School of Public Affairs at the University of Wisconsin, presents “The Dilemma of Corruption in Mainland China: Saving the Country or Saving the Party?” Wednesday, June 4 at 4:30 p.m. in the Wriston Art Center auditorium. The event is free and open to the public.

Despite more than two decades of reform efforts, Manion says China today ranks among the most corrupt countries in the world, with corruption reaching the highest level of government. According to Manion, Chinese leaders acknowledge the problem is more serious than at any time since 1949 when the communist assumed power and they view corruption as one of the greatest threats today to communist rule.

On the anniversary of the 1989 massacre that ended the biggest anticorruption protest in Chinese communist history, Manion will examine how Chinese leaders have tried, largely unsuccessfully, to deal with the dilemma of the Chinese expression: “Don’t fight corruption and the country dies. Truly fight corruption and the communist party dies!”

A member of the La Follette School faculty since 2000, Manion is the author of the forthcoming book, “Corruption by Design: Building Clean Government in Mainland China and Hong Kong” and the 1993 book “Retirement of Revolutionaries in China: Public Policies, Social Norms, Private Interests.”

A graduate of Montreal’s McGill University, Manion studied for two years at the University of Peking before earning her master’s degree at the University of London and her Ph.D. in political science at the University of Michigan.

Her visit is supported in part by the Henry M. Luce Foundation.

Lawrence University Pianist Wins Top Honors at State Competition

Lawrence University senior Rachel Bittner earned first prize honors Saturday, May 24 at the Wisconsin Music Teachers Association’s annual Badger Collegiate Piano Competition. It was the second straight year a Lawrence pianist was awarded the competition’s top prize.

In addition, Nicholas Towns and Erin Grier earned honorable mention recognition at the competition.

Conducted at Lawrence’s Memorial Chapel, the WMTA Badger Collegiate Competition featured 12 pianists from colleges and universities throughout Wisconsin. It was adjudicated by Fred Karpoff, chair of the keyboard department at Syracuse University.

Bittner, a senior from St. Paul, Minn., who earned honorable mention recognition in this same competition last year, received $200 for her winning performance. A student of Associate Professor Anthony Padilla’s piano studio, Bittner played Beethoven’s “Appassionata” Sonata, Op. 57, Prokofieff’s Sonata No. 7, Op. 83 and Chopin’s Scherzo No. 3. She will pursue graduate studies this fall in piano performance at the University of Wisconsin, where she will study with former Lawrence music professor Catherine Kautsky.

Towns, a senior from Princeton, Ill., and Grier, a junior from Woodside, Del., are also students of Padillla’s piano studio.

Cultural Differences of Brain Death Focus of Lawrence University Biomedical Ethics Lecture

Anthropologist Margaret Lock compares the concept of brain death in Japan and North America and how culture and politics have influenced its recognition and impacted organ transplantation in the final installment of Lawrence University’s 2002-2003 Edward F. Mielke Lecture Series in Biomedical Ethics.

Lock, associate professor in social studies in medicine at Montreal’s McGill University, presents “Twice Dead: Organ Transplants and the Reinvention of Death” Wednesday, May 28 at 7 p.m. in the Wriston Art Center auditorium on the Lawrence campus. The lecture is free and open to the public.

A specialist in the relationship between culture, technoscience, health and illness, Lock will examine the reasons behind widespread anxiety in Japan over the use of a brain-dead person as a resource for the procurement of organs, which until very recently had been illegal, including the traditional Japanese cultural relationship of the dead to the living and the process of dying as a social and familial event.

She will contrast the Japanese model with that found in North America where the widely agreed opinion that the clinical condition of a brain dead body is irreversible has allowed relatively easy utilitarian harvesting of organs for transplant.

Her address also will include discussion of a recently published position of several neurologists who argue that a brain dead body is not biologically dead and that death remains, as it must always be, elusive, subject only to socially constructed definitions designed to provide medical professionals with a sense of certainty and with legal protection.

Lock, who has taught in both the departments of social studies of medicine and anthropology at McGill for more than 25 years, was the 1997 recipient of the Wellcome Medal for research in medical anthropology from the Royal Anthropological Institute of Great Britain and was the 2002 winner of the Molson Prize in the Social Sciences and Humanities of the Canada Council for the Arts for her pioneering research in medical anthropology.