[Faster.] [Higher.] [Stronger.]
A University of Dayton law graduate is at the center of London’s efforts to host the 2012 Olympic Games and revitalize its long-neglected East End.
Commuting to work every morning is something of an epic journey for Terry Miller ’77.
She drives 10 miles from her bucolic 15th-century farmhouse in tiny Alfold, Surrey (a county bordering London’s southeast), to Guildford rail station, takes a 30-mile train ride to Waterloo International, walks 1.5 miles along the spectacularly historic Thames River Path to London Bridge, cruises 10 minutes on an express boat down the Thames to Canary Wharf (once the busiest dock in the world and now one of London’s two busiest financial districts), and walks a few blocks to her office on the 21st floor of the gleaming, 21st-century-constructed One Churchill Place.
There, through the towering building’s vast paneled windows, Detroit-born Miller, the general counsel of the London Organising Committee for the Olympic Games and Paralympic Games (LOCOG), quietly surveys the steadily developing 700-acre Olympic Park. Since her appointment in 2006, Miller has watched this once industrial, contaminated land in east London grow into a “big five” cluster of venues — the Olympic Stadium, Aquatics Center, Velodrome, Olympic Village, press center — that will host one-third of the XXX Olympiad’s events in 2012.
But Miller doesn’t gaze from the window for long. The games are less than two years away, and while Londoners may applaud construction milestones or grumble about the costs, Miller spends her days — and evenings and weekends — focusing on the mammoth legal task of making London 2012 happen.
The job involves managing a legal team of 25 — 10 of them from Freshfields, a global law firm and official legal services provider for the games — to offer advice on all aspects of LOCOG’s operations, including meeting the International Olympic Committee’s Host City Contract terms, implementing sponsorship and supply contracts — there are more than 7,000 — and protecting the London 2012 brand. When it comes to the games, there’s little that Miller’s team is not involved in.
“Our legal team is really integrated into the business,” says Miller, 59, between sips of coffee in a LOCOG meeting room, its door open wide to capture staff banter and panoramic views beyond the many desks. “There’s nothing in the games that’s not hugely interactive.”
It’s an autumnal Friday morning and, in Friday spirit, Miller is wearing jeans (and good walking shoes). Her grey hair is cut just above her shoulders, and when she talks, she is still, her countrified chapped hands cradling her mug, her minimally made-up brown eyes looking askance, and her American tone infected with British-isms and enunciated T’s, suggesting a long sojourn in England (22 years, to be precise; her British husband of 37 years, journalist Jonathan Miller, moved the family to London in 1988, and she was naturalized in 1996). “We have our base camp here, but most of the time, team members are out meeting with people from all other areas.”
Currently, that legal team is working with LOCOG human resources to recruit 70,000 volunteer “Gamesmakers” to help deliver the games.
“The HR team has responsibility for setting up the program,” explains Miller, “but worked with legal to make sure we covered issues like where we set the age that someone can volunteer. We wanted to encourage youth to apply, but volunteers under a certain age can’t work the same shifts as an adult, so we had to work through that.
“We also had issues around using ‘Gamesmakers’ as a title,” she continues. “There might be someone else who has the name ‘Gamesmakers,’ right? So we checked to make sure we could use it. We worked with the technology people to set up the online system. We had to ensure that the online structure allowed, in the best way possible, people with disabilities to use it, or that they could apply in other ways.”
Although her 5’2” frame exudes calm, Miller is acutely aware of the ticking clock. She mentions three times in 90 minutes that she needs to finalize most legal matters by the end of 2011.
“You can’t be doing huge deals two days before the games.”
Her priorities include liaising with the independent company producing the games’ opening and closing ceremonies to ensure that its policies, procedures and contracts are consistent with LOCOG’s; recruiting a ceremonies lawyer to deal with performing rights and talent negotiations; finalizing arrangements and contracts for third-party venues (65 percent of events will occur in commercial venues outside the Olympic Park, the highest percentage in recent games history); completing contracts for approximately 25 training venues; arranging the Olympic Park’s hand-over from the Olympic Delivery Authority, which has been building it; and detailing documentation about how LOCOG will use the Royal Parks, specifically Hyde and Greenwich parks and the Horse Guard’s Parade area.
Does that mean Miller will just kick back at games time, her job done?
Not exactly. Come 2012, Miller will oversee the management of each venue’s roaming brand protection team to control instances of infringement or ambush.
“If we need to take action such as getting an injunction to stop an infringement,” she explains, “Freshfields will have the additional support to take the case to court. We’re spending time now with Freshfields preparing legal action templates so that they can rush into court if necessary.
“Ad hoc issues might also arise, where we need to consider legal rights and obligations, like if equipment isn’t delivered the day before an event in the main stadium. How people deal with that is important because at games time everyone’s immediate reaction is ‘I don’t care! I’ll just call up whoever!’ to get a substitute. What you want to say is, ‘You have the right to get a substitute,’ and log it as a breach of contract, so that when the dust settles, you can make a claim.
“And there will be insurance-related issues. For example, among the first sports in 2012 is eventing [an equestrian sport], one of the most dangerous sports, so in addition to doing everything possible to make it as safe as we can we need to have protocols if something happens to the horses, to the riders. We need to have procedures in place, understand where we might have liability and have insurance to cover that.”
Learning about intellectual property, sports law and brand protection has challenged Miller, whose previous legal roles — as a partner and international general counsel of Goldman Sachs International in London, partner in the firm Kirkpatrick and Lockhart, and branch chief of the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission’s enforcement division — had little to do with these areas.
“It’s been a huge education,” she says. “I didn’t really know the sports world except to the limited extent that I’m a competitor [she owns seven horses and regularly competes in eventing], but I didn’t really understand sports law or intellectual property. When we did the 8 1/2-minute handover ceremony [during Beijing 2008’s closing ceremony], we had to get rights to everything shown, sung or presented, plus organize all the contracts with our talent — David Beckham, Leona Lewis, Jimmy Page. We needed rights to new music. It was a lot of work, but it’s been amazingly interesting.”
As for protecting the London 2012 brand, LOCOG has all U.K. rights to the Olympic name, symbol, trademark — meaning any name containing “Olympic”, the rings, the Paralympics’ agitos symbol — until the end of 2012 and was obligated to expand U.K. laws of the 1940s and ’60s to protect Olympic and Paralympic symbols. The act passed in April 2006 for this purpose also enables LOCOG to protect against ambush — not the actual use of the rings, for instance, but marketing campaigns that refer to the games in a way that people might assume is official, yet isn’t.
“We do everything we can to educate the industry,” says Miller, who hasn’t yet gone to court with infringement or ambush cases because violators have backed down. “The team includes four brand protection specialists who work with the IP legal sector, tourism representatives, hotels, trade associations, to get out the message that you can do certain things but not others, and that we’re obliged to the IOC and our sponsors to act in ambush or infringement cases.”
LOCOG has also formed an anti-IP crime group with external partners, including the Metropolitan Police, to deal with such cases as well as with ticket scams and touting (scalping).
“We took many precautions around the 2012 emblem when it was announced in 2007,” Miller explains, “because while you can’t protect a number like 2-0-1-2, you can protect a distinctive shape and how it’s used.”
Striding past the Tate Modern (converted in 2000 from a disused power station) on her walk to London Bridge and then sailing through shiny, thriving Canary Wharf (transformed only 20 years ago from declining docks), Miller is reminded daily of the enduring power of regeneration and, therefore, of one of LOCOG’s central commitments: to revive long-neglected east London. Her daily walk has also made this much-lauded attorney (Legal Week’s General Counsel of the Year in 2006, The Lawyer’s Hot 100 in 2007, The Times Law 100 in 2008) acutely aware of accessibility issues that affect all of London and that the games can improve.
“You can’t really walk all along the river,” says Miller, who chairs the Accessibility and Inclusion Integration Group interagency forum, “because the walkway doesn’t continue around Clink Street. Buildings come up against the bank. And there’s no way to cross the river in an accessible way if you want to do a loop. You have problems if you’re able-bodied, but if you’re in a wheelchair, you have huge problems. You can’t go over cobblestones or over any bridge except the Millennium Bridge.
“We’re working with London’s mayor, among others, to develop a plan to make part of the river walk accessible — a huge benefit for people in wheelchairs, people with babies in pushchairs, and a small example of limited money having a big impact. If the river offers accessibility, numerous venues, like Greenwich, the Dome, ExCel, can be reached by boat. You can get the whole Brazilian wheelchair basketball team to the Paralympics in one big boat; otherwise, you’d need four specially equipped vans. It’s like when, two years ago, a mayoral disability office delivered ramps between piers and boats. I didn’t have to get hauled aboard by my elbows anymore, and people in wheelchairs could finally use the boats. Every day I bless the person who made that happen. That’s the kind of thing we can use the games to do because the games are happening on a particular day. We’ve got to do it now; we can’t just drift.”
As Miller talks about “using the power of the games to inspire change,” LOCOG’s tagline, her passion for making a difference is clear.
“We’ve committed that 10 percent of our volunteers will come from the Personal Best program,” she says, explaining how the program provides long-term unemployed people free training to qualify them to be 2012 volunteers.
“But because the program incorporates things like first-aid training, customer relations, event organizing, some people have gotten jobs already. That’s an example of creating opportunities for people who otherwise have no chance: because no one has ever employed them, no one will ever employ them. This puts them into an employment context, and that’s really important. If we miss this chance, it would really be a shame.”
Miller attests that her meticulously orchestrated daily journey to work — effectively spanning 50 miles, five centuries, four modes of transport — is “entirely for the purpose of getting some exercise,” but it illuminates a character that is disciplined, committed, patient and diligent. These attributes certainly have much to do with Miller’s journey from her childhood home in Detroit to one of London’s tallest buildings and most desirable legal jobs.
One of five children, with an accountant father and a stay-at-home mother, Miller recalls money being tight and starting part-time work at age 15.
“We were all expected to go to college,” she says, “but had to figure out how to get there, so I got a job at a library. I loved it. I loved reading and still do, and was one of those kids who’d come back from the library with a stack of books.”
Miller worked throughout her undergraduate years at University of Michigan at bookshops, libraries, even a sandwich joint called Mister Mini’s on Ann Arbor’s main drag.
“Aside from a couple of bad babysitting jobs, I’ve never had a job I hated,” Miller says. “But being the LOCOG’s general counsel is certainly one of the best legal jobs in the world. When I left Goldman Sachs, I had about 180 lawyers in Europe and Asia on my team who knew much more about their areas than I did, so I delegated a lot more. Here, I’ve been involved from the beginning, paralleling my 1989 career start at Goldman. It was essentially a start-up business in Europe and Asia — there were only two lawyers in London, I was the second in Europe and only the third outside the U.S. — which meant you did and set up everything. I really liked that. Coming to LOCOG meant coming back to a start-up.”
Paul Deighton, LOCOG chief executive and former COO of Goldman Sachs in Europe, worked closely with Miller at Goldman and encouraged her to try for the LOCOG role; 200 others also applied.
“Every time there was a problem at Goldman, I used to ask, ‘What does Terry think?’ and when I got to LOCOG, I didn’t want to change that,” Deighton says. “Terry has extremely good judgment about when it’s the right thing to be tough and when it’s the right strategy to seek a compromise. And like any good lawyer, she bases her good judgment on the facts. I particularly have a high regard for her sense of humor and how she develops her team.”
In 2009, law professor emeritus Dennis Turner met his former star pupil (Miller graduated first in her 1977 class) when he took 25 current students to England on a study abroad program. Miller spent two hours with the group.
“Students were awestruck by her demeanor and brilliance,” Turner recalls. “One student described her as ‘powerful without a hint of arrogance.’ Miller clearly promoted a team approach, even though it was clear from the respect of the other lawyers that she was very much in charge.”
Turner remembers the student Miller as having “a maturity and a wisdom that set her apart from others — she was very self-disciplined and had confidence and poise, qualities she still has today.”
Miller came to Dayton after graduating with a degree in English from Michigan and getting married. She wrote for the Kentucky Post and National Enquirer, where she reported, among other stories, about former Ohio Gov. James Gilligan’s alleged UFO sighting.
“It was not a career-enhancing move for him, but I made so much money out of that,” jokes Miller. “I did that and then went to law school because a law school was starting up at Dayton and I thought, ‘Why not?’ I had covered a big court case in Kentucky and, while watching the trial, thought, ‘I might like to do that.’”
“Terry has the deadly combo,” says former classmate Thomas Whelley ’77, now a partner at Dayton law firm Dinsmore & Shohl. “She’s incredibly bright and she works really hard. She was always prepared and worked really hard in law school. I didn’t know that her current position existed, but if you’d said she was in [Prime Minister David] Cameron’s cabinet, I wouldn’t have been at all surprised.”
Another Dayton peer, Judge Mary Donovan ’77 of the Second District Court of Appeals in Dayton, describes Miller as “an excellent writer with a keen intellect. She was focused, driven and enthusiastic — but in a very quiet way. Terry never sought the spotlight. She was also a very principled and kind person and, along with the few married women in class, helped look after crisis-stricken classmates.”
After Dayton — where she contributed to the School of Law’s newsletter and Law Review, served on the Law Review board, and clerked for a local judge — Miller got a job at the Securities and Exchange Commission in Washington, D.C.
“That was a fantastic job,” she remembers. “It was like being a reporter with subpoena power. The very first case I did involved Rev. [Sun Myung]Moon, whom I interviewed under oath, and I wasn’t even 30. It was a tremendous learning experience.”
After six years at the SEC, during which time she earned a master’s in law from Georgetown, Miller had a daughter (today a CNN producer in London) and a son (a writer/sculptor in Tel Aviv) and began working part time at Kirkpatrick and Lockhart, a firm she’d encountered in SEC cases. That position set her up to work in London after her husband took up a Times (of London) post there. Shortly after the trans-Atlantic move, Miller’s financial experience became highly desirable as London prepared for “the aftermath of big bang and the whole system of regulation,” and Goldman Sachs recruited her.
About juggling career and family, Miller speaks candidly: “You have to make decisions about your priorities, and for a chunk of my life my priority was family. I did ridiculous things. I’d go to work, come home, put the kids to bed and return to work. It helped that my husband often didn’t have to be in the office 9 to 5. After my kids grew up, work became my priority. Choices dictate your career path, so my career was an extended one — I made partner at Goldman in 2002 when I was 51. But that’s OK. It’s OK. I wouldn’t change that.
“I’ve been hugely lucky,” says Miller philosophically, adding that the 2012 Olympics are her last big adventure. After 2013, she’ll focus on riding (she wants to earn more qualifications for teaching it) as well as writing and traveling.
“I mean, to be part of the early days in Europe at Goldman Sachs — no one in 1989 would necessarily have said that Goldman would emerge as the premier investment bank in the world. And what could be luckier? I’ve been a huge sports fan my entire life and, when I was growing up in the U.S., the Olympics were this amazing event that happened only every four years. With the possible exception of snooker, there’s no sport I wouldn’t watch.
“So here you are, it’s your city, somebody you know is in charge, and you’re still vaguely compos mentis. Why wouldn’t you say, ‘Gee, I’ll throw my hat into the ring’? You would never pass up something like this. You just wouldn’t.”
Christine Fundak Rohan is a London-based writer whose work has appeared in university magazines across the U.S.No Comments
When Catholics joined the American mainstream
When Paramount Pictures’ Going My Way began unspooling at movie theaters across the nation in 1944, a new, invigorated image of Catholicism was projected onto the big screen and the American landscape. The musical comedy/drama, with Bing Crosby portraying young, wise-to-the-world Father Chuck O’Malley, was on its way to seven Academy Awards, including best picture and a best actor Oscar for Crosby.
And the image of Catholicism, conveyed and reinforced through American mass media, was continuing its shift toward a cultural center stage as the nation remade and redefined itself in the shadows of the Great Depression, the New Deal and World War II.
This changing depiction of faith — reflected in film, in print, and on radio and television — began to paint Catholicism with a New World brush, said associate professor Anthony Burke Smith in his new book, The Look of Catholics: Portrayals in Popular Culture from the Great Depression to the Cold War (University Press of Kansas, 2010).
Changing popular culture showed Catholics through a wider, less mysteriously ritualistic lens, moving them from society’s margins toward the middle of a shifting American culture. These new images depicted the hopes, dreams and values of Catholics as in step with a transitioning nation that was becoming the most powerful on Earth.
“Through film, television and photojournalism, Catholics during the 1940s and 1950s elaborated a vision of the nation that fused cultural consensus at home to ideological and military conflict abroad,” said Smith, who invested 10 years in researching and writing the book. His examination of Catholics in pop culture took him from film archives in Los Angeles to the Library of Congress and National Archives in Washington, D.C. The U.S. Catholic Collection at UD’s Roesch Library was also a fertile resource.
“Initially, I spent time focusing on analyzing film and media texts,” Smith explained. “However, I realized that in order to adequately understand not only these texts but also my broader subject, I also needed to look beyond texts into their contexts of production, promotion, as well as reception. Therefore, I had to access material that wasn’t readily available without getting into archives.”
The book’s 46 pages of notes and bibliographic material are evidence of the daunting research task that confronted the author. Summer research grants from UD, including one from the Forum for the Catholic Intellectual Tradition Today, helped make the undertaking possible.
“Working in these archives proved incredibly exciting and rewarding,” Smith said. “You learn a lot about yourself when writing a book, and I learned that I’m probably happiest when I’m in a library and archive. Of course, I also got to watch lots of great as well as obscure movies.”
The Look of Catholics positions readers in the midst of an America that was ripe for change. Economic collapse at home and looming war clouds abroad brought a re-examination of American values, from laissez-faire capitalism to perceptions of a well-functioning and equitable society, Smith writes. Catholic perspectives and cultural memories, as reflected in film and elsewhere, took their place at the table of public discussion as the nation sought to regroup, rebuild and redefine.
“Prior to the Depression, Catholics in America were viewed with suspicion and distrust,” Smith said. “A year before the economic crisis began in 1929, Al Smith, the first Irish-American Catholic to run for president, had to answer to anti-Catholic attacks. Until the 1930s, Catholics were perceived by many as being in America but not truly of America. But with the Cold War, the situation of Catholics really changes. Simply put, Catholic success in America is deeply embedded in the triumph of Cold War culture.”
The pre-Depression alienation of immigrant Catholics in the U.S. mirrors the experience of some American Muslim communities and other minorities today, Smith said.
“Muslims are facing religious hostility and bigotry similar to that Catholics experienced in the 19th century,” Smith said. “Like Catholics, Muslims are associated with a complex, transnational religion. For some Americans who equate the nation with certain forms of Christianity, this makes Muslims a threat to the country. It is remarkable that today the very bricks and mortar of Muslim worship — mosques or proposed mosques such as the one in New York City — have become the target of xenophobia and religious prejudice. This very much echoes the experience of Catholics. In the 19th century, Catholic structures of worship and religious practice — their churches and convents — were viewed with suspicion and attacked.”
Meanwhile, as impassioned discussions of topics such as the location of a New York City mosque play out nightly on cable TV, they push wide open the throttle of national debate, often at loud levels.
“Popular media have long played a crucial role in debates over religious and ethnic minorities, whether it be bestselling fiction of the 19th century or the Internet today,” Smith said.
“Popular culture is deeply political, an arena where images are created and disseminated to de-legitimate religious and ethnic minorities.
Popular culture also is the terrain where these same religious and ethnic minorities have in the past forged new images of themselves and their societies. Popular media is both where the ugliest, most intolerant elements of American society are displayed and where battles for a more open and just world often get waged.”
Going My Way, for which Leo McCarey — a Catholic of mixed ethnicity — won a best-director Oscar, was particularly pivotal in the acculturation of Catholics into mainstream America, Smith said. Released in the wake of films such as San Francisco (1936), Boys Town (1938) and Angels with Dirty Faces (1938), McCarey’s movie helped push Hollywood away from the bullet-riddled gangster tales of the Depression and toward a new generation of film that was riding the wave of a confident, assertive America, a nation edging toward ethnic inclusion and revitalized societal institutions. Catholic themes and imagery helped nudge film in that new direction.
Bing Crosby, who grew up in an Irish Catholic home, shattered the mold of earlier images of priests. His character, Father O’Malley, had been a jazz singer with a girlfriend before entering the priesthood. Crosby’s young, hip, energetic, confident and worldly-wise portrayal contrasted with earlier stereotypical depictions of priests as elderly and static, often uninspired and unmovable. Through the course of Going My Way, as Father O’Malley’s new way of doing business saves St. Dominic’s Parish from financial disaster and turns around a flock of youth headed for trouble, an invigorated face of the priesthood emerges. O’Malley, a younger image of an authority figure, falls in step with a future-looking America eager to shed the worn garments of the past. That O’Malley takes St. Dominic’s leadership reins from the older and largely ineffective Father Fitzgibbon drives home the point.
Helping to pave the way for such an image transformation was 1940’s San Francisco Docks, which culminated with Father Cameron (played by Robert Armstrong) bringing down a killer with a mighty and unpriestly right hook. Again, a new, robust image of the priesthood is suggested.
A number of early ’40s films advanced the message of a new Catholicism: The Fighting 69th (1940), Knute Rockne (1940), The Keys of the Kingdom (1943), God Is My Co-pilot (1943), The Fighting Sullivans (1943) and The Song of Bernadette (1943) all spoke to elements of faith.
McCarey himself went on to make The Bells of St. Mary’s (1946), a Catholic-themed sequel to Going My Way. Even his earlier romantic comedies, such as The Awful Truth (1937) and Love Affair (1939), used a Catholic sensibility to narrate redemption and change.
“Collectively, these movies marked a Catholic moment in American cinema and popular imagination,” Smith writes in his book. “The late 1930s and early 1940s saw a concentration of Catholic-marked movies, but significant differences in emphasis and theme emerged over time. Tracing the changes within these films from the ’30s to ’40s illuminates the eclipse of social consciousness in popular imagination that occurred by World War II.”
In Going My Way’s Father O’Malley, some observers see the foreshadowing of another vigorous young leader who would capture the imagination of the Cold War nation, young Sen. John F. Kennedy of Massachusetts, whose sights were set on the White House.
“The global American identity that the Cold War developed gave Catholics new legitimacy. Conversely, Catholics played a crucial role in elaborating a Cold War consensus vision of the nation,” Smith said. “Keep in mind that the most dynamic, compelling face of Cold War America in its early years was an Irish-Catholic American, John F. Kennedy.”
The work of Academy Award-winning filmmaker John Ford, an ethnic Catholic and son of Irish immigrants, also drew Smith’s attention. Through vehicles such as Doctor Bull (1933), Stagecoach (1939), How Green Was My Valley (1941), My Darling Clementine (1946) and Fort Apache (1948), Ford lassoed the romance of the Hollywood western and gently wove religious imagery and perspective into the storylines.
“Ford’s films expressed a Catholicism voiced in a ‘minor’ key,” writes Smith. “Rarely the explicit subject, Catholicism lurked beneath and within familiar stories of western frontiers and small-town communities, covertly untying the bonds that sutured Anglo-American Protestantism to American identity.”
The look of Catholics in pop culture was changing in more than just film. In print media, Henry R. Luce’s Life magazine was the publication of national record during the Depression-Cold War decades, and it, too, reflected a transitioning image of Catholics. As the nation’s benchmark of photojournalism, Life moved beyond early stereotypical depictions of Catholics kneeling in prayer or pensively clutching rosary beads to a portrait that more resembled the family next door, a family engaged in the American experience.
“My work on Life magazine proved particularly satisfying since the deeper I got into researching and writing the chapter, the more I realized I was onto something important about the role of Catholics within postwar American culture,” Smith said. “That the premier popular magazine gave such sustained attention to Catholicism demonstrated that images of Catholics had national significance and not only relevance for Catholics.”
Catholicism — in the U.S. and overseas — often found its way onto the pages of Life. Luce, king of the Life-Time-Fortune-Sports Illustrated publishing empire, was fascinated by religious stories and images, perhaps even more so after his wife, politician and playwright Clare Booth Luce, converted to Catholicism. With Life’s lens fixed upon the world, Catholics had become appealing subject matter.
As America turned the calendar to the 1940s, Henry Luce began to speak of “The American Century” to describe the nation’s emergence as a world power. In a pivotal 1941 essay, he called for a “national revitalization.” Life’s focus on Catholics often aligned with Luce’s call, offering glimpses of a new cultural formation via narrative and image presentations. As a result, Life’s pages celebrated middle-class success, citing capitalist freedom and the fundamental institutions of family, home and faith as determinants.
“Life’s portrayal of Catholics in the late 1930s had a highly voyeuristic character, as if the journalists were gazing at them with both fascination and disapproval,” Smith writes. But with Luce’s belief in an American century, that was finally changing.
A new vision of America and Catholicism appeared throughout the culture in the ’40s as Catholics were portrayed as war heroes in narratives and photographs that articulated national pride and moral strength. For example, an essay about Archbishop Francis Spellman of New York was subtitled “a great American.” The fascination and disapproval of the ’30s was replaced by a shift toward assimilation, projecting Catholics as vital and compelling contributors to an American Century moving forward in search of a national consensus and a resistance to totalitarian communism.
Photo essays in popular magazines cast a positive light on the person and institution of the papacy. Stories and images also illuminated the vitality and romanticism of a Trappist monastery in Utah and a group of youthful American Jesuits. In one memorable photograph, an altar boy leaps into the arms of his proud mother after serving his first Mass. The magazine had replaced an Old World view of Catholicism with a refocused and robust representation that signified a New World melting pot.
Meanwhile, the emergence of two new technologies — radio and television — added impetus to the changes afoot. In particular, Bishop Fulton J. Sheen, with his prime-time TV show Life Is Worth Living (1952-57) and an earlier NBC radio program, Catholic Hour (1930-50), became the popular face and voice of Catholicism. Sheen, once auxiliary bishop of New York and later bishop of Rochester, offered an upbeat, steady and guiding voice from the Depression to abate the growing fears of the emerging Cold War.
First on the DuMont TV network and later on ABC, Sheen spoke of Catholicism in terms that were accessible and understood, whether he was speaking about the challenges of interpersonal relationships or the spiritual implications of the fight against communism. In 1945, Time labeled Sheen “probably America’s best-known priest, with an audience of millions for his Sunday preaching on NBC’s Catholic Hour and fan mail of 3,000-6,000 letters a Sunday.” From 1953-58, Sheen consistently appeared on the list of the 10 most admired men in America, according to Gallup polls.
Sheen also was in demand outside the radio and TV studio, with as many as 150 speaking engagements each year. In 1935, he spoke to a gathering of 40,000 at the Eucharistic Congress at Cleveland’s Municipal Stadium. At its apex, his Life Is Worth Living reached up to 30 million viewers, and in 1952 he won an Emmy for most outstanding TV personality.
“In Sheen’s hands, religion offered psychological aid for ordinary people as they dealt with everyday problems,” Smith writes. “It gave people moral purpose and direction.”
As the nation dusted itself off from the devastating Depression and then confronted first a world war and then the uncertainties of the Cold War, Catholicism forged a new place in the American Dream through film, print, radio and TV. Along the way, a reworked America emerged — with new voices of influence making their marks within the national conversation.
“Catholic leaders responded to the crisis of capitalism during the Depression in a vigorous, intentional way,” Smith said. “The collapse of economic individualism confirmed for them the bankruptcy of modern laissez-faire capitalism. They were ready to offer alternative solutions to the economic challenge facing all Americans at the time by proposing more communitarian and cooperatist visions of society grounded in the tradition of Catholic social teaching.”
The election of Kennedy as president and the emergence of Pope John Paul II as an international media figure who helped champion the fall of communism are evidence of how national and global cultural landscapes have since evolved.
But, for Smith, this conclusion suggests another pursuit. He’s considering taking on a second research-laden book project.
“I’d like to move from The Look of Catholics into a larger project that examines Catholicism, media and politics from the Cold War to the early 21st century. This includes examining religion in film in an international realm,” he said. “European filmmakers such as Roberto Rossellini and Federico Fellini manifested great interest in religion in their projects, and the reception of those films in America raises a larger question of how those European films changed perceptions within the U.S. in the second half of the 20th century.
“This project also involves examining Pope John Paul II as the most significant religious media figure of the late 20th century and how his papacy as a media construction related to the revival of a Cold War cultural logic in America. So I’m interested in continuing to explore the inter- twining of religion, media and politics in modern culture but now more fully across national borders.”
No doubt all requiring extensive time happily spent rummaging archives near and far, not to mention watching plenty of films, popular and obscure, along the way.
Freelance writer Ken Palen lives in Butler Township, Ohio, and is an adjunct professor in UD’s department of communication.No Comments
At 15 years old, Theresa Flores ’07 became, literally, a modern-day slave when an organized crime syndicate sold the teenager’s body over and over for two years. Twenty-five years later, she’s adding her voice to a new anti-slavery movement. This is her story.
I had thought all these years that I was the only one.
I was born in Akron, Ohio, to a normal Irish, Catholic family. I grew up in what most people would consider a privileged family. I was expected to attend college; it wasn’t a matter of if but where. Over the years, I earned a bachelor’s degree at Ball State University and a master’s in counseling education at the University of Dayton.
However, none of those privileges, expectations and abilities made me immune.
I never knew the name for what happened to me. There wasn’t a word for it. In our society, we require a label for everything: our race, the part of town we live in, our hobbies and interests, our mental states of being. For 23 years, I felt I could not fully heal until I knew what to call what happened to me.
I was a bilingual social worker in my early 40s when one day a co-worker asked whether I could attend a conference in her place.
“Theresa, I signed up for this and the agency paid for it but I can’t attend,” she said. “I have a feeling you need to go to this.”
I looked at the paper she handed me. At the top of it were the words “human trafficking.” It looked interesting, so I agreed.
All that week, I kept thinking of the upcoming conference, and it weighed heavily upon my heart. The night before, I told my children that everyone had to go to school the next day because I had a very important meeting I could not miss. Sure enough, my 8-year-old son came to me the next morning and said he didn’t feel well.
“Too bad,” I said. “You have to go to school. You will be fine.”
Feeling a little guilty, I drove to the conference and sat down in the large auditorium at the State Trooper’s Training Academy in Columbus, Ohio. I listened intently to an expert in the field talk about human trafficking and read on the large overhead screen that modern-day slavery is essentially when one person uses manipulation, threats or blackmail to make another person perform a sex act in which the first person benefits financially. Within five minutes of being there that morning, I knew
why I was supposed to be there. I finally had my words.
He explained that human trafficking is the second leading crime in the world. I was immediately devastated, for I had thought all these years that I was the only one. I knew, at that moment, that it was my destiny to be at the conference and time to fully heal.
After that day, I began my journey of speaking out and sharing my horrific story with anyone willing to hear it. Because no one saved me. And honestly, who would have thought this was happening to a kid like me?
Yes, a kid like me. I had a typical family with two parents and three younger brothers. We lived in an affluent suburb of Detroit, in a home with four bedrooms and five bathrooms. I was a comfortable teenage girl with nice clothes and my own phone line in my room. I wasn’t abused, I didn’t do drugs and I wasn’t a runaway. Yet, I was vulnerable and targeted. We moved frequently because of my father’s executive job. And while it was always an adventure, we never had any extended family around, no supports and were always the new kids. There wasn’t anyone to say, “Hey, Theresa is acting different.”
At my new school, I developed a crush on a boy whom my parents had forbidden me to date. Even my friends said it was not a good idea to associate with him. But I was 15 years old, and I had a crush on him. One day, he offered me a ride home from school. I accepted, as any teenager would do. That simple decision changed my life forever.
I ignored the red flags when he turned the wrong way out of the school parking lot and again when he pulled into his driveway and invited me in “for a moment.” I ignored my gut instinct and convinced myself that everything would be OK.
Inside, he offered me a soda to drink. I accepted it. I discovered later the drink was laced with a drug. That afternoon in what I thought was a big empty house, this young man raped me. I was devastated. Here I was, a 15-year-old Catholic virgin, a suburban teen committed to saving sexuality for marriage. As devastating as that was, it would pale in comparison with what I was about to endure for the next two years.
Little did I know that this boy’s family had strong organized crime connections, and the rape was only the first step of a broader plan they had for me.
My rape was photographed by the boy’s older cousins, who confronted me with the pictures soon after my attack. I was already broken and crushed from the rape, and now they told me they would share the pictures with my family, my priest, my classmates, with anyone, unless I “earned” them back.
They threatened me and my family, forcing me into a life of servitude and debt bondage I could hardly imagine.
Over the next two years, I was watched everywhere I went, whether at my part-time job, babysitting for friends or walking to and from school. This was the arrangement: They would summon me at any hour, on any day, and I had to appear. Sometimes they took me out of class or picked me up after school. Some nights, while my family slept behind closed bedroom doors, they called my private phone line and told me they were on the way to pick me up. I was told that I would die if I told anyone and that they would kill my family if I refused. I was terrified. Saying no was not an option.
Over and over, I was delivered to very nice homes where men waited for me. I never knew how long I would be gone, where I was or even if I would ever see my home again. All I knew was I couldn’t escape until they were finished with me.
To them, I was a nameless commodity, a service more profitable than drug-dealing. One night, after being used repeatedly, a well-dressed, older man came into the room.
He looked out of place among the typical brutes.
“What’s your name?” he asked.
I knew better than to answer, having made that mistake before, so I remained silent. The gentleman turned and asked the trafficker, “What’s her name?”
The man in charge looked disgusted and replied, “What does it matter? She has no name.”
The clean-cut man turned his saddened, pity-filled eyes to me. Then he walked out of the room.
No one saved me during this time. No one offered me any help. No one said, “Theresa, I feel as if something is wrong. Can I help you?”
Except one person. The most unlikely person reached out to me. A person I normally would have looked down on. A waitress in a dingy, inner-city, 24-hour restaurant.
It was the most horrible night of my life. Normally when I was called “into service,” the same car and driver would pick me up. However on this night, something felt different. While I waited, as usual, at around midnight for the car on the street behind my house, the hairs on my arms rose up and I got a sense of dread. When this happens to most people, perhaps while walking at night or in a parking garage, they can run, scream or call 9-1-1.
I didn’t have that option.
When the familiar car pulled up, I saw there were six men inside instead of the usual single driver. They pulled me into the car and drove me very far from home. We arrived at some dirty, nasty motel in downtown Detroit. I had only seen motels like this on television, never with my own eyes. It was smelly and had broken-down cars in front of the room doors. I was dragged from the car and into one of the rooms. I can’t explain the feeling I had being in a small, musty motel room, the only female and surrounded by two dozen older men. Here I was, now 16 years old, not sure whether I was going to leave here alive. It is a feeling no child should ever have to know.
My trafficker, who had been one of the men in the car, spoke up.
“Gentlemen, here is your reward for a job well done within our organization,” he said, gesturing toward me. “Here is an incentive to others of you. If you work hard enough, this is what you can have.”
That night, I was auctioned off to the highest bidder and passed around the room. Many hours later, after passing out from the torture, I awoke all alone and in pain. I couldn’t find my clothes, and had no shoes, no identification, no money. I had no idea where I was or what I was going to do. I was in a place of the deepest despair that many adults will never even know. And I had nowhere to turn.
The only person who helped me the entire two years of being trafficked was the waitress in the motel’s 24-hour restaurant. On a night where I, as a child, came face-to-face with the devil himself and managed to live through hell, this angel came to me to help deliver me safely to my home. She saw the red flags and noticed this young girl with no shoes and in severe shock who looked out of place.
She simply asked what no one had ever asked me: “Can I help you, honey?”
She offered me a dime to call my parents on the pay phone in the lobby. And when I couldn’t muster the strength to call my parents, most likely subjecting them to a death threat, she called the police, who took me home.
Looking back, I can see all the red flags, all the times people could have suspected something and reached out to help. My nightmare stopped only when another job transfer for my father meant another move for my family. It was a miracle that it happened before the traffickers simply didn’t return me home one night. People have no idea that this is an epidemic problem in our very own country. I have made it my mission to educate others on this issue, to tell them that slavery is alive and in their own backyards.
Yet, people have a difficult time with the word “slavery.” The definition of slavery is when a person has control over another person. If we don’t see the invisible chains and the psychological bondage, we tend not to believe it.
Arrests of teenagers trafficked into prostitution are one example. When a 16-year-old is arrested for prostitution, we need to speak out about this oxymoron. The words “teen” and “prostitute” should never be used together. Ever. What child would ever want to do this voluntarily? By definition, anyone under 18 years of age involved in prostitution is a victim of human trafficking. Yet our society is not protecting the human rights of children when they are routinely arrested and jailed for prostitution. All the while, the “john” is let go. But he is the real perpetrator and a pedophile. Why do we not see this here in our own country?
Approximately 300,000 American children are at risk of being sexually exploited right here in the U.S. And in the time it takes you to read this article, the FBI confirms there are 100,000 American children being sexually trafficked, just as I was. We may think that this is a problem only in cities like New York, Los Angeles and Las Vegas, but you might be surprised to learn that the FBI has rescued more children from Ohio who were forced into prostitution than from any other state in the U.S. They have also identified Toledo, Ohio, as the No. 1 recruitment city in the entire United States for this crime.
Unfortunately, once rescued, there are not many options for these children. These young victims need specialized care to address the psychological manipulation that traffickers impose on their minds and therapeutic interventions similar to deprogramming a victim of a cult. Many of these trafficked children are runaway youth who have no other alternatives, no other options. Currently, there are only 39 beds in the entire country to serve American children who have been trafficked. They are located at three residential facilities in Los Angeles, Atlanta and New York City. The problem of trafficking, however, isn’t limited to those cities.
I am involved in opening a new shelter in Ohio that will provide a safe place for a small handful of these young victims. It will offer them a chance to heal and an opportunity to be a kid again. Gracehaven will be a long-term, therapeutic, residential group home that houses 10 girls under the age of 18. It will be not only the fourth shelter opening in the country, but it will also be the first faith-based home. We at Gracehaven believe that a strong spiritual component is essential to the healing process. Mind, body and soul must be treated in order for the person to become fully rehabilitated from this horror. We will offer educational assistance, life skills training, medical care and ongoing counseling. Additionally, Gracehaven is currently training therapeutic foster families to provide another option for a trafficked child, so that when our home is at capacity, there will still be alternatives available to them.
People often ask how I’ve managed to heal. For many years, no one wanted to listen to my story and no one understood. A place like Gracehaven didn’t exist, and I had nowhere to turn, so at some points I stopped trying. But I desperately needed to release the trauma. The only thing I could do was to keep a journal and write. When I was done writing, I shoved it away deep down inside and tried to resume a “normal” life. I tried not to think about it, but it always seeped through as I slept. I became determined to get a counseling degree so I could help save other high school girls, so they would have someone to listen and see the red flags. All I ever wanted was to be a wife, a mother and to help those less fortunate. I refused to let my past control me any further, so for many years I had to heal all on my own. But I really wasn’t healed.
Eventually there came a point where I simply couldn’t ignore the pain and flashbacks any longer. I felt all alone. I had no one to talk to who would understand what I had endured. I tried to find counselors who could help me, but there were none trained in this issue. Things caught up with me, and I felt as if I had no alternative. Just like the girls enduring this today. It was through much prayer and God revealing His purpose for me that I started to finally heal. He brought forward the people from Gracehaven and support from others working in this field. Writing my book for others to read, being a part of something tangible like helping to start Gracehaven, and being able to give hope to others who are where I was so long ago has all helped me to finally heal. All of these things allowed me the vehicle to stop shoving away the pain and the horror, so I could now turn it into a mission called Gracehaven.
I believe that we can stop slavery once and for all. Great people throughout our country’s history have fought hard to eradicate slavery and human bondage, including Abraham Lincoln, Harriet Tubman and Martin Luther King Jr. I have faith and hope that we can stop this oppression once and for all.
But first we need to acknowledge that it is occurring here and give hope to those trapped by it. Even in the deepest, darkest moments of my past, I never lost my faith and always held on to the hope that the next time would be the last time. These men took everything from me, physically and mentally. But I was determined that they couldn’t take my spirituality away from me. That was all I had, and what enabled me to survive and now be able to turn a hell into hope for others. I had faith and hope back then, and I have faith and hope now that slavery can be stopped. It will take more than just me, though.No Comments
The fleet of golf carts was lined up outside Kennedy Union, the University’s version of limos for alumni not accustomed to hiking the campus during a Dayton summer. We were at the start of Reunion Weekend, and six of us ’70s-era alums piled into a cart piloted by a pair of catalog-cute UD students. Bound for Marycrest, skirting a construction zone or two, we tried to get our bearings: Hey, isn’t that where the tennis courts used to be? Is that the ROTC building or photo lab? Is that Founders — or Alumni Hall?
But there was no mistaking the towering, brick wings of Marycrest Residence Complex. More construction blocked the main drive and the parking spots where our parents had helped us unload typewriters, suitcases and stereos an astonishing 37 years earlier. Now, as women in our mid-50s, we headed into the side entrance of this place where we had met, a random collection of freshmen and transfer students assigned to 1 North.
The first days of being away at college are a remarkable time of discovery. And, decades later, our own reunion-within-the-reunion last June was, in its way, equally remarkable. We rediscovered — through sharing fragmented memories — who we had been. We discovered what had become of each other during the intervening years. Most amazingly, we found that, despite all we had done, undergone and learned since leaving campus, we really had not changed. We spoke the same, displayed the same mannerisms and tendencies, approached situations the same way, laughed the same as when we were teenagers. That discovery was both eerie and comforting. UD had been paradise, and now in finding each other, we’d reclaimed that place and wonderful time.
HOW IT HAPPENED
If you all loved one another back then, why wouldn’t you now? —Regina McFadden Moran ’75
First of all, we had a blast being back on campus together. We’d hoped for a great time, but many years had passed, and who knew if we’d still click? We hadn’t exactly been sorority sisters after college, sending birthday cards and sharing the small and large moments of life. After graduation, we had scattered geographically, with me eventually landing the farthest away, in Portland, Ore. There was no Internet, just the post office’s forwarding address service and the UD Alumni Office’s alumni directory — which is only as good as the grads who update their info.
This was a reunion heightened by great mystery. Of the nine of us who gathered at UD in June, I had neither seen nor talked with four of the girls since 1977 or ’78: Doreen Dougherty, Anne Marchetta, Anne Rejent and Kathleen McCarter. (Some of our children are college-aged or older themselves, but we were girls for the reunion.)
We other five had stayed connected only lightly during our post-Flyer days. Jonelle Bindl, Regina McFadden, Lynne Bailie, Linda Lee and I had gotten together twice. In 1983 or ’84, inspired by The Big Chill, we’d spent a weekend in Cincinnati, where Jonelle lived at the time. And in 1994, Jonelle and Regina pulled together an autumn reunion weekend in Santa Fe, N.M. — attractive simply because none of us had been there before.
Fifteen years passed. Lynne and Regina — ex- New Jerseyites who now live two hours apart in Florida — were inspired by an overnight they’d spent last summer. It was time, they decided, for a reunion, and one that cast a wider net for more of the girls from our corner of Marycrest and our year at 242 College Park.
So last Thanksgiving, Lynne sent an e-mail titled “THIS IS YOUR OFFICIAL INVITATION TO OUR 37TH YEAR OF FRIENDSHIP REUNION!!!!!” She and Regina threw out location ideas ranging from Las Vegas to the Poconos, and they asked for help in finding several other girls from our group.
A couple months and many e-mails later, we’d settled on a nostalgic, budget get-together in Dayton sometime in June 2010. Linda and Kathleen, who live in the Dayton area, jumped in with a hometown welcome. Linda offered to turn her soccer-mom Odyssey van into an airport shuttle. Kathleen set up a Friday dinner at the Oakwood Club and invited everyone to her house for a Sunday afternoon brunch.
Location set, we scoured various sources for finding the missing girls. We started with the UD alumni directory then branched into Facebook, Google, Switchboard.com and the American Dietetics Association website. We sent e-mails and made phone calls. Lynne wrote letters. By the time we’d tracked down Anne Rejent in St. Louis and Doreen Dougherty in Goshen, Ky., we could announce that consensus had led to the weekend of June 11.
Linda soon reported back: June 11-13 was UD Reunion Weekend.
Hmm, good or bad? It turned out to be a beautiful coincidence, with the campus geared up for company. It was an official reunion year for only Regina, who graduated in 1975. But if you are a Flyer, you are a Flyer. When we all showed up for the tail end of the ’75 class party Friday night, of course we were all welcomed in and offered a beer. A good beer.
WHAT WE DID
I thought it was neat that we could just pick up and continue like we’d seen each other yesterday. It wasn’t weird, it wasn’t awkward, it wasn’t any of those things. It was like we were all just friends. When I think about it, we only spent nine months times three years — 27 months — together. And then we are friends after 33 years. So that to me was pretty amazing.—Lynne Bailie Buehrer ’76
The group of us approached the wide-porched house at 242 College Park a little tentatively. Were students living there over the summer? Wouldn’t it be fun to be invited inside? We headed up the front steps of our old home, knocked, tried the bell. Nothing stirred.
We’d been so lucky in the UD lottery to score this house across from the library. It was big, handsome and full of nooks and crannies, including a cubby shelf on the stairway landing where I’d once tucked an avocado pit, suspended on toothpicks, in an attempt to grow an avocado plant. We peeked through a front window: Oh, could that be the same big dining room table where we’d gathered for dinners? We each chipped in about $10 a week, filled Lynne’s VW Thing with groceries from Liberal Market, and took turns cooking and cleaning up.
Our visits to Marycrest and College Park were the pilgrimage part of our reunion. Milano’s was the first stop for the six of us who had arrived by Friday afternoon (no longer a hole-in-the-wall, but a sit-down restaurant), followed by campus. Campus and off-campus were filled with friendly students and an interesting mix of buildings and spaces intact from our era and ones we envied, such as ArtStreet and the Fitness and Recreation Complex. (Anne M. and Anne R. tried out the eight-lane pool.) The total effect was part time travel and part, “Wow.”
And wandering through KU, we loved seeing that in the age of Facebook, the wooden ride board is still matching rides and riders. (Note to President Curran: We know you have lots of renovation plans. But just as the gazebo is sacred, so is the ride board.)
The whole weekend was an amazing chance to reclaim bits of our past that had been lost in the wash of the years. We all had memory gaps and jumbled recollections, and it was awesome to be with a group that could, collectively, fill in the blanks and put things in order. Lynne had packed along her photo album, and those faded snapshots reawakened memories of Halloween parties, Homecoming dances (I loved that dress!), concerts and Flyer basketball.
It wasn’t all “Remember when … .” We did a dizzying amount of catching up: over drinks, dinner and brunch; around campus and in the Ghetto; in the hotel lobby, at parties and in our pajamas. We talked about meeting our husbands, and marriage, divorce and re-marriage. We opened up about college heartbreaks and pain that had been held private at that time, and we listened with a greater compassion and wisdom than we would have at 18 or 20. We talked about creative pursuits, careers and kids. I had to marvel at our little Boomer sample group: All of us were married, all had children or stepchildren, and the majority of our group had younger husbands, with the men being junior by as many as 15 years. Kathleen was the only person I would not have recognized. Her curly red hair was now a chic, ultra-short platinum blonde. But her voice was pure McCarter.
And we shared important stories: Regina’s reflections on her brother’s death while she was at UD. The hepatitis C that Doreen acquired through a blood transfusion after she was the victim of a devastating car crash in 1994, and her subsequent intense interest in nutrition to battle the progression of the disease. Anne R.’s gig, for 16 years and counting, as private chef to sportscaster Bob Costas, NBC’s voice of the Olympics. My cautionary tale about breast cancer screening: while regular mammograms are highly important, so are breast self exams, because some cancers — including the type with which I was diagnosed in 2003 — do not show up well in mammograms or even ultrasounds.
Anne M. had the most dramatic story, about her recent quest to find her birth parents. Through a slip-up in the Catholic adoption agency’s paperwork, she was able to trace her way to her birth mother, who had been a registered nurse overseas during World War II. Her birth father was a Franciscan priest who had visited military hospitals across Europe during the war. The nurse and the priest had told no one about their baby girl. In her pursuit of her past, Anne found welcoming relatives on both sides of her birth family — and insights into her own nature.
A lot of life had sure happened since the late ’70s.
TOUR DE DAYTON
My oldest daughter got married just before the reunion, and the family into which she married was by happenstance a big University of Dayton family. So at the wedding, I talked to a lot of people who were at Dayton or who had graduated recently or graduated a long time ago. And when they were saying how much they love Dayton, I didn’t quite get it — until I went out and saw it again. And then I said, ‘Now I get it.’ —Anne Marchetta ’76
Kennedy Union was buzzing with alumni Saturday afternoon. We registered and picked up nametags in the spot where the candy counter once stood. Thanks to Reunion Weekend, a campus tour and update on student life was delivered to us with cold beverages and snacks — and included department open houses, too. Bottles of water in hand, we joined one of the groups and caught up on renovations and construction, the University’s long-range plans for growth (with breathtaking opportunities afforded by the old NCR property), the big incoming freshman class, the internal debate about the ideal size for the student body (total enrollment now is about 11,000, with 7,700 undergrads), and the no-keg rule.
And just as the tour passed near the old campus laundry building, who should appear but Father Burns. Norbert Burns, S.M., has taught about one-third of UD alumni in the Christian Marriage class he began in the 1960s, and his “Challenge of Modern-Day Marriage” was a fixture for 25 years on WVUD. He stood for a moment to beam at our group.
A slender, dark-haired man with a Class of ’85 nametag broke from the tour to greet Father Burns and tell him, one-on-one, about the lasting impact the priest had had on his life. I took a picture of the two of them, and he did the same for me. I don’t recall his name, but I remember his happiness. When I handed him back his camera, he said that that chance to connect with Father Burns had made the whole trip worthwhile.
Those moments of meaningful serendipity, I reflected, are among the joys of Reunion Weekend. The principle was like those first days of college: Whether you go out with a group or solo, if you are there, something neat can happen. Take Friday afternoon, when my roomies’ golf cart crossed paths with a minivan — and a woman waving out the window and yelling, “Jan!”
What a kick. It was my old housemate Jan Cherry Stanley ’77, whom I’d lived with senior year with a different group of friends at College Park. I made plans to meet Jan and her husband Chris ’75 Saturday afternoon at Mass in the chapel. While I was at the chapel, Anne R. paid a visit to her former English professor Joe Pici and his wife, Anne; a few other roomies headed to Flanagan’s Pub for a beer and some World Cup. All very UD.
Fun coincidences popped up all weekend, including the middle-aged man in the lobby of the Marriott whom I had approached Saturday night after the Porch Party. Would he take a picture of us? Noticing that his name tag read “Ken Adams Class of ’70,” I decided to throw out an improbable question: Did he know Lynette Filips — my sister who was also a 1970 grad? “Shorter than you, dark hair, from Cleveland?” he answered. Crazy. Adams had known her from Cleveland Club.
The lobby of the Marriott, in fact, was like a big UD dorm lobby. Throughout the day, evening and deep into the night, the place was a happy intersection for all ages of grads. And if you happened to be there at 3 a.m., you’d find out you can get pizza delivered until 4. Now that’s the mark of a college town.
UD was so fun. —Doreen Dougherty Carlson ’78
By the time Mass ended late Saturday afternoon, the various department open houses had ended. It was time to get ready for the Porch Party, which was really a big tent with a Mexican buffet and a band. But I was craving a quiet time to retrace my younger self’s footsteps. I decided to try a couple of buildings’ doors to see if any had been left unlocked.
When I slipped inside Sherman Hall, it felt just like my roommates: the same. The tiled floors, the classic hallways and classrooms, and most of all, the building’s comforting institutional smell — was that born of decades of floor wax and textbooks?
I studied the housing notices posted on bulletin boards and the research summaries hanging in the halls. I poked my head out the back door to see the side steps from Marycrest. I pictured myself hurrying through the halls, surrounded by fellow students — and on more than one occasion, running out that door and up those steps to retrieve a forgotten notebook. On the second floor, I paused to watch the perpetual pendulum swing. It all brought a stillness to my heart.
Our getting together was unlike anything I have ever experienced before. Some of us had stayed in touch and some not at all, and it was so cool that we could come together and pick up where we had left off — and open our hearts and our minds to each other. And now we don’t want it to end. —Jonelle Bindl Gilden ’77
Back at home in Kentucky, Doreen got all motivated and launched a Marycrest Mavens blog, where she posted a handful of photos from the reunion and provided a space for keeping the conversation going. And indeed that conversation has continued with visits, letters, e-mails and phone calls.
Such as: When Doreen was checking out colleges in St. Louis with her college-bound son later in the summer, she got together with Anne R., who lives in St. Louis. They met each other’s families, talked about partnering on a food enterprise, then — so lucky! — went to the Carole King-James Taylor concert.
When Regina visited family in Chicago in July, she and Jonelle met for lunch. Jonelle, who lives outside Chicago and travels constantly, had dinner with Linda in Columbus in late July and with Lynne in Fort Lauderdale soon after. And just before that, Lynne had toured Massachusetts Maritime Academy with her daughter and met up with Anne M., who lives outside Boston.
No one has made it to my side of the country since the reunion, but I arrived home one day to find a box from Doreen and her fledgling business enterprise, WellFarm Food. She’d sent everyone her WellFarm Nutri-pack — the dehydrated purees she makes from whole fruits and vegetables, mixed in with other goodies such as probiotics and oils. I was in awe as I unwrapped these foods, packaged like a cross between festive party favors and scrapbook art. Cards from both Annes have brightened my stack of ordinary mail.
And I was so touched by an e-mail from Anne R. with an idea “which you inspired and in your honor,” she wrote, for declaring the ninth of each month as breast self-exam day. “I thought the ninth because there are nine of us!” How great is that? I followed through on the ninths of August and September.
Doreen has invited everyone to bunk at her farm in 2011, with families invited. Lynne has already signed on for the country weekend. “I plan on taking a day trip up for the reunion party,” she told me on the phone. “I want to see everybody that I remember from 1976.”
And next June, many other returning Flyer alumni will be surprised by campus but be reminded, as we were: We are UD.
Janet Filips ’77, a communication major turned journalist and writer, lives in Portland, Ore. Arnica Press will publish her first book, Luscious: 100 Recipes and Insider Stories from Oregon Growers, Artisans, and Chefs, in December 2010.
REUNION WEEKEND reunion.udayton.edu
MARYCREST MAVENS marycrestmavens2010.wordpress.com
NATIONAL CANCER INSTITUTE INFORMATION ON BREAST CANCER www.cancer.gov/breastNo Comments
Seniors Erica Ventura (left) and Carolyn Teter (right) have talked with literally thousands of alumni since their freshman year. They’re two of approximately 60 students in UD’s Telefund program, calling alumni to ask them to make a gift to UD. Their advice for making their day:
1. Be shocked by your reunion year “I’ve called alumni and said, ‘Oh, I see it’s your 40th reunion year,’” Teter said. “And they’ll say, ‘Oh my gosh.’ They’re astounded. They can’t fathom it.”
2. Tell them you loved beating X They did too. After a win over Xavier, “We hear ‘Go, Flyers’ left and right,” Teter said. “The guys get on the phone and have a field day with it.”
3. Be a Golden Flyer “Their stories crack me up,” Ventura said. “Football was huge. The women lived off campus.” And Golden Flyers are the only ones with stories about meeting their true loves on campus 50+ years ago.
4. Give advice “Alumni know what professors and classes to take,” Teter said. “They know it like the back of their hand.”
5. Give a gift Something you might not know: The callers often play games in the calling room, and each gift earns them extra turns and such. It might even help your particular caller score a gift certificate for pizza on Brown Street with a Trivial Pursuit victory. Even more importantly, your love and support of UD’s community deepens theirs.
6. Enjoy the call “We love to just talk,” Ventura said. Teter added, “This is a great job to have. I feel I know so much more about the University. It’s going to be sad to leave.”No Comments
Mark Pulsfort ’74 oversaw the three-year planning and construction of the new Yankee Stadium, now entertaining its second season of baseball fans. Pulsfort, vice president and deputy operations manager for the New York business unit of Turner Construction, had a special interest in keeping the Bronx Bombers’ fans happy; he’s one of them.
1. Take charge Pulsfort, a lifelong Yankees fan, routinely oversees skyscraper construction. But when Turner’s business unit received the bid proposal for the new Yankee Stadium, Pulsfort advocated for the job, knowing his company could handle the schedule and budget constraints of a project that was still being designed.
2. Coordinate Pulsfort used 3D building information modeling to handle the complexity of the project. After trade subcontractors inputted their work into the model, he developed clash reports — such as identifying where a structural beam bisected a water pipe — and resolved thousands of them to reduce risk in the field.
3. Keep an eye on history Features needed to remind fans of the ball team’s history, including the arch frieze hanging from the interior roofline and Gate 4 main entrance façade of precast limestone and granite. “Knowing the history of the old stadium, what the Yankees represent, the records — now there will be new players and history going forward, and I’m very proud to be part of that.”
4. Make every seat in the house a great one Precast stadia installed by cranes and 50-foot cantilevers hinted at the final layout, which positioned several upper seating bowls closer to the field. Fans have better sightlines, improved concessions and an open concourse to enjoy the game.
5. Savor it At the home opener April 16, 2009, Pulsfort walked into the stands, sat back, and watched both the game and the success of the structure he ushered literally from the ground up. It was his favorite moment of the project: “Opening day, to be in the stadium and have 50,000 fans sitting around you and to know you were part of making this happen, particularly when it was on time and on budget.”No Comments
Father Bert Buby, S.M. ’45 professor emeritus of religious studies, is recording a CD series on apocryphal Gospels this fall. It will be released by Now You Know Media in time for Christmas.
How did the four Gospels come to be considered canonical and the others lacking in authority or authenticity (apocryphal)? —Ed Smith, Kettering, Ohio
Predominant leadership in early Christianity really separated itself from anything that seemed to be a threat to what they received from the apostles. Canonical Gospels, in general, are founded on earlier traditions. The apocryphal Gospels — literature ranging from 90 A.D. to 700 A.D. — show us the diversity in some of the outlying communities of Christianity and how they looked at leadership from a different perspective. Soon I will be working on the Gospels of Judas and Mary Magdalene, which are very interesting.
What is the difference between a Marianist and a Jesuit? —Evan Ruggiero ’13, Palantine, Ill.
The main difference is the Marianists emphasize a strong discipleship based on the mother of Jesus. They differ in that brothers and priests are on an equal level of respect, with the priests tending to the sacramental life and the brothers tending especially to the education part of our mission, with both working together for the poor and on social justice issues. Jesuits focus on obedience to the pope and are more individual in their expression of community life.
Why did God require himself (Christ) to die for our sins? —Joseph Bonanno ’72, Manchester Township, N.J.
“God so loved the world that he gave his only son” [John 3:16]. The fact that Jesus became human through his mother, Mary, shows us that someone who was human had to be part of the reconciliation necessary to unite the human and the divine, and Jesus was the one to show us the way. What has not been assumed — our human nature — cannot be redeemed.
What do you think is the future of Catholicism in China and South (even North) Korea? —Robin Smith, Dayton
From listening to the Chinese Catholics here in the United States, it will be a difficult and long journey before Catholics will be able to have the same freedom of expression that they have in Taiwan or southern Korea. Communist authorities control the Catholic expression of faith in public.
When there are significant differences between various English translations of Scriptures, do you encourage students and alumni to select the wording that they like most? —Don Wigal ’55, New York City
As a teacher, I show them what it says from the original language — the Greek, Hebrew — and then have them see which of the new translations seems to capture what was in that original text. There’s a commentary given in four English versions that’s very helpful for students —the Complete Parallel Bible. What they like would be the personal application —Scripture is supposed to have an effect on you.
In a contemporary setting, especially in a place where religion is fading into the background, what role do the church and Mary have to play in society? —William P. Anderson, Lac du Flambeau, Wis.
Dignity of human work, dignity of owning property, dignity of the individual — this is really an area in need because of globalization. The church could really help the whole of society by promoting the compendium on social justice and peace statements in a simpler and clearer format, maybe by making them available at a lower price so more people would read them. And how does Mary fit in? I have a graduate student, Laura Morrison, working on that. She’s looking at Mary as a model of the Catholic social mission through the documents and scriptural passages and applying Catholic social teachings to the life and work of Mary.
My senior year at UD, I had the best possible job — student receptionist at Alumni Hall. One of the sweetest memories I have is when you bought a new pair of running shoes and were so excited that you showed them to me. Father Buby, are you still running? —Anne Muth Orlando ’85, Pittsburgh
I started running in 1970 and was still moving at a slow jog until a few years ago. I am not running because of a hip replacement; however, I do try to run from my superiors.No Comments
When the University of Dayton welcomed the largest, most geographically diverse first-year class since the Vietnam War era, we paused to celebrate the moment.
It is an extraordinary accomplishment, but not the one by which we measure our true success. We are continually transforming the University of Dayton to meet the needs of today’s students and shape our future.
I posed two big questions to my administrative team at a summer retreat. How do we remain a vibrant, forward-thinking learning community in the Marianist tradition? How do we ensure broader recognition of the value of the educational experience we provide?
We are viewing the challenges in higher education with an inventive spirit — and an eagerness to embrace change and take action. While our retention, graduation and alumni giving rates rank higher than national averages, I believe we can do better. We must do better to compete.
We will improve the first-year experience for new students, offer more scholarships and do more to prepare all students to enter and thrive in a rapidly changing world. We will inspire greater numbers of alumni to invest in their alma mater because, having experienced the transformative power of a University of Dayton education, they recognize their important role in our mission. We can reach our aspirations only through greater levels of private support.
In a highly competitive marketplace, we are focused on improving our position nationally and globally. We will boldly communicate our distinctive identity and continue to establish broader domestic and global markets, ensuring that all students feel at home on our welcoming campus. We will assess our programs, abandon outdated ideas, and introduce curricular innovations and new technologies at a pace normally not seen in the world of academia.
This is not a new management philosophy. The Blessed William Joseph Chaminade, founder of the Society of Mary, advocated for ongoing, adaptive thinking that responds to world conditions. He called for a clear vision of education and continuous improvement of methods. Our history brims with examples of how we have boldly transformed this campus to meet the needs of the day.
Over the years, we have built a strong campus community that educates students to link learning and scholarship to lives of leadership and service. We have never viewed ourselves as an ivory tower isolated from the urban community that surrounds us, but as a social force that must be involved in the region to reach our full potential. We have worked to create knowledge in service to the community — and the world.
These are distinctively Catholic, Marianist values that guide our work as educators every day. Our historic mission will not change. It’s as fresh and relevant today as it was 160 years ago.
Chaminade knew how to read the signs of the times and respond boldly with faith and action. We’re walking in his footsteps.No Comments
I wanted to go to new student convocation in RecPlex. Honest. But there was another new student, just down the hill from the chapel, who needed me more.
As President Daniel J. Curran welcomed first-year students and SGA president Jim Saywell told them they’ll know they’re Flyers when they spontaneously yell, “Go UD,” to tour groups of prospective students, I sat on a tiny chair in a classroom at Holy Angels School, kindergarden orientation for my 5-year-old, Gus.
He spent it on the playground outside while we adults talked very seriously of matters like curriculum and shoe-tying, bathroom breaks and bus-riding protocol. Behind the parents’ questions was a mixture of anticipation and anxiety. We each balanced them on the scales of our hearts at this moment of letting go.
Our Marianist principles commit us to education for adaptation and change. Change can prompt reflection, as it did for Janet Filips, who came to campus this summer to visit with housemates from College Park and hallmates from Marycrest, some of whom she hadn’t seen since she walked the line at graduation.
And she peeked in the windows of that College Park house and walked the hallways of Sherman Hall to see what she would feel.
Change can also prompt discovery. To keep his Blue Sky Project growing, Peter Benkendorf opted to uproot himself, his family and his arts program from the Chicago area to the University of Dayton, where his daughter had enrolled. From the move is growing a mutual revelation: what visiting contemporary artists can offer UD and the city of Dayton, and what our insistence on community can offer to usually solitary artists. Both sides have much to gain.
And sometimes change can sneak up in ways as subtle as a tiny footnote in an obscure scientific article. That happened to alum Ed Timm, and as a result he and UD researcher Khalid Lafdi are making strides toward alleviating the suffering of glaucoma patients, a very welcome change indeed. When new worlds open before us, we react to find our place in them and shape what they and we become.
Janet, Peter, Ed and Khalid are doing that, and so are our students at that convocation I missed.
Even as a kindergardener at age 5, Gus is discovering how to shape himself and our world. Over the last month my wife and I are doing the same, uncovering daily the space in our hearts to watch Gus grow in knowledge and love and faith.
And in a community that nurtures that, how can there not also be great hope?No Comments
To breathe life into a relic, inhale deeply and sing.
An intricately embellished 16th-century Spanish antiphonary revealed centuries of liturgical tradition and candle wax as 20 students and their professor surrounded the manuscript and chanted, “Gloria Patri, et Filio, et Spiritui Sancto.”
“I told them how lucky they are to be at a university that allowed such access to such amazing material that is so large that our students can actually touch and sing from,” said Samuel Dorf, a new lecturer in music and musicology.
When he arrived on campus this fall, Dorf sought out hidden treasures on campus, such as the Zimmerman Collection, which includes instruments from around the world. It was then that Roesch Library special collections curator Nicholetta Hary asked if he would like to see the antiphonary.
His exclamation: “That would be awesome.”
Its 240 thick vellum leaves are stained with the oils of centuries of hands turning pages. Measuring more than 15 inches wide and 21 inches high, each leaf contains five staves of black notes on red lines. The words — from psalms, hymns and other parts of the Divine Office — written in Latin in Gothic hand begin with finely decorated initial caps surrounded by swirls and curls in red and blue ink.
In his Music History and Literature I class, students learn about the books and music first transcribed in Europe in the ninth and 10th centuries for distribution to abbeys and congregations. As they paged through the antiphonary, students encountered the unmetered notation for chanting developed in the 11th century, notation quite different than that common in today’s music.
“It was difficult to do together, as the rhythms were very obscure,” said music major Samuel Day.
Still, the students’ ability to sight read was impressive, Dorf said, illustrating both their training and skill and — along with the antiphonary — giving him more reasons to feel lucky to be at UD.
“It was a living, musical tradition, and it still is living because we sang from it last week,” he said.No Comments