Open Line Faculty-Staff Newsletter for the Week of Feb. 18, 2013

Campus News  •  Noteworthy  •  In the News

Campus News

Michael Benitez Jr. named new dean for diversity and inclusion and chief diversity officer
Currently director of the Office of Intercultural Engagement and Leadership at Grinnell College, Michael Benitez Jr. will begin his appointment at Puget Sound on June 5. In his new role Benitez will have primary responsibility for coordinating implementation of Puget Sound’s strategic plan for diversity. This includes overseeing access and achievement programs, monitoring and evaluating the campus environment, developing new resources, and collaborating with campus leadership, faculty, and students to advance the college’s diversity goals.

"I am very excited about the work ahead,” Benitez said. “From the first moment I visited Puget Sound and the Tacoma area, it was apparent that this is a campus committed to diversity and inclusion, and academic excellence. Realizing a diversity vision requires a collaborative spirit, authenticity in the mission, innovation and holism in the approach, and transparency and intentionality in the process—all of which I observed in the efforts of campus members and the leadership. I look forward to partnering with the campus community in building on and advancing this vital work at Puget Sound.”

The Cellar offers take-and-bake specials for faculty and staff
The Cellar has announced monthly take-and-bake specials for faculty and staff members. For the month of February, Monday through Friday, from 2 to 6 p.m., faculty and staff members can get any large specialty pizza and a two-liter bottle of pop for just $10. Download the complete Cellar menu, and place your order by calling x3663.

Reservations for Daedalus Dinner featuring Prof. Paul Loeb due Feb. 20
The first Daedalus Dinner of the spring semester will be held on Wednesday, Feb. 27, at 6 p.m., in Murray Boardroom, WSC. Paul Loeb, professor of philosophy, will discuss how rapid advances in science and technology are contributing to the alteration, enhancement, and evolution of the human into the posthuman.

The evening begins with wine and hors d'oeuvres, followed by the featured presentation, a catered buffet dinner, coffee, dessert, and discussion. Reservations are $15 per person, made on a first-come, first-served basis, and must be made by Wednesday, Feb. 20. Contact x3207 for more information or to make a reservation.

Art+Science Salon series begins Feb. 21
On Thursday, Feb. 21, Puget Sound and Tacoma Art Museum will present the first Art+Science Salon, from 6 to 8 p.m. at the museum. “It’s all about getting some connections happening between artists and scientists,” said Siddharth Ramakrishnan, Jennie M. Caruthers Chair in Neuroscience. “We’re hopeful that people will be inspired by others’ work and decide to go out for a coffee and talk about working together.” The evening will include five-minute presentations by 10 artists and scientists in what is known as Pecha Kucha style: a fast-paced series of presentations that encourage the synthesizing of ideas, and will be held in the Art Resource Center. Everyone is welcome to the free event, which runs on the museum’s regular Third Thursday free admission day.

Step Afrika! to perform on campus Feb. 24
STEP AFRIKA!, the first professional company in the world dedicated to the tradition of stepping, will be on campus for a performance Sunday, Feb. 24, at 7:30 p.m., in Schneebeck Concert Hall. Founded in 1994 the company reaches tens of thousands of Americans each year and has performed on stages in North and South America, Europe, Asia, Africa, and the Caribbean. Admission is $7 general, $4 for members of the Puget Sound community. Tickets are available at Wheelock Information Center or

American Voices series brings educational justice to life through interactive, artistic presentations, beginning Feb. 25
American Voices: Invisibility, Art, and Educational Justice features educators, scholars, artists, and activists whose work pushes the boundaries of civic consciousness with nontraditional voices and performances. The first presentation of the series will be Monday, Feb. 25, with Thelma Jackson, education consultant to five Washington governors, and Paul Rucker, acclaimed artist and musician. The “Education, Race, and Criminal Justice” event will begin at 7 p.m., in Schneebeck Concert Hall. Entrance is free and everyone is welcome. Tickets are not required.

Staff Senate nominations are now open
Would you or someone you know like to serve on Staff Senate next year? Nomination forms are now available on the Staff Senate SoundNet site. Complete and send the form via campus mail to Staff Senate #1036, or reply to with your nominations by Wednesday, March 6. Eligibility and interest will be confirmed by Staff Senate Elections Committee. Nominations are open until March 6.

This year, for the first time, elections will be conducted with an online ballot. In March each staff member will be sent an email message with a link to an electronic ballot. To request a paper ballot or to request to have a Staff Senate executive member visit your department meeting to assist in online voting, contact Lisa Kenney at x2813 or Cori Hammock at x2451.


Professor of Music Geoffrey Block recently gave two talks and participated in a panel discussion at The Fifth Avenue Theater in Seattle. The two Show Talks were "The Music Man" and "Sing a Little, Talk a Little: The Music(al) Men of the 1950s." The panel discussion, "The 10 Greatest Broadway Musicals of All Time and Why," was hosted by theater artistic director David Armstrong, and included panelists Albert Evans and Andrew Buchman.

Congratulations to Associate Professor of Politics and Government Rachel DeMotts, who received a grant from Elephants Without Borders, supported by the Paul G. Allen Family Foundation, to work on two projects while she's on sabbatical in Botswana and Namibia.

Numerous faculty members from the School of Music participated in the Pacific Northwest Ballet's performance of Sergi Prokofiev's setting of Romeo and Juliet earlier this month. The ballet orchestra included the following Puget Sound affiliate artists: Tim Christie, viola; Joyce Ramee, viola; Karla Flygare, flute; Jennifer Nelson, clarinet; Rodger Burnett, horn; Fred Winkler, sax; Steve Schermer, bass; Ryan Schultz, tuba; Mark Williams, trombone; Gunnar Folsom, percussion; Dan Williams, oboe; Danielle Lemieux ’98, horn; (community music); and Flori Rothernberg, clarinet (community music).

In the News

Weekly Volcano ran a photo story about the first Art+Science Salon at Tacoma Art Museum.

The Pecos Bill Jacobsen Jr. concert, featuring new music by pianist Professor Duane Hulbert, received a bright photo review from The News Tribune in its Go section and a two-photo story in Tacoma Weekly.

Basketball player Kelsey McKinnis ’13, who majors in exercise science, gives campus tours, and sits on three committees and clubs, was profiled by The News Tribune.

Tacoma Weekly ran a story about the election of President Ronald R. Thomas to the board of the National Association of Independent Colleges and Universities (NAICU).

Sign up to receive "In the News," a weekly digest of Puget Sound press coverage, by contacting our media relations office at or x2611.

Congratulations to our 125th Anniversary Video Contest winners!

Last fall we asked Loggers to create videos that captured the spirit of Puget Sound. At our 125th anniversary kickoff event Jan. 25, we unveiled the entries and opened voting on our YouTube channel for the People's Choice Award. To date the playlist of all six videos has received almost 3,500 views. Congratulations to all!

First Place
“To the Heights” by Jeff Strong ’76, P’11, P’13, Technology Services

Second Place
“The Hatchet” by Erik Bjarke P'16 and Kristoffer Bjarke

People’s Choice Award
“Logger Style” by the Student-Athlete Advisory Committee

February Faculty Grants Update newsletter now available

Produced by the Office of the Associate Deans and Corporate and Foundation Relations, the Faculty Grants Update newsletter shares a variety of opportunities and search tools that may be helpful in faculty research or to stimulate new ideas. Download the February issue, or see past issues and other funding services on the Grant Resources Web page.

Do you know what to do in an emergency?

To request assistance or initiate an emergency response on campus, call Security Services at 253.879. 3311 or x3311 from a campus phone, or dial 911. Learn more at

Can't-miss Events

Through Saturday, March 2: Kittredge Gallery Exhibit: Large Gallery: Yuki Nakamura and Robert Campbell; Small Gallery: Contemporary Drawings Show, Kittredge Gallery

Through Thursday, March 14: Collins Memorial Library Exhibit: Celebrating 125 Years in the Stacks, Collins Memorial Library

Monday, Feb. 18: Black History Month Slam Poetry and Spoken Word, Black Student Union, Rasmussen Rotunda, WSC, 11 a.m.–2 p.m.

Tuesday, Feb. 19: Guest Lecture: The New Music Business: DIY and Etch Out a Career, Matthew Coley, percussionist, composer, Iowa State University, Murray Board Room, WSC, 4:30 p.m.

Wednesday, Feb. 20: Guest Presentation: Composer and Artist Panel Discussion, Matthew Coley and Andrew Ardizzoia, Music 106, noon

Wednesday, Feb. 20: Black History Month Slam Poetry and Spoken Word, Black Student Union, Rasmussen Rotunda, WSC, 11 a.m.–2 p.m.

Thursday, Feb. 21: Guest Lecture: W/resting Authority: The Muslim Debate on Gender Equality, by Ayesha S. Chaudhry, University of British Columbia, Trimble Forum, 5–6 p.m.

Thursday, Feb. 21: Asian Culture Celebration, Rasmussen Rotunda, WSC, 6 p.m.

Friday, Feb. 22: Brown Bag Neuroscience Lunches, Rasmussen Rotunda, WSC, 1 p.m.

Friday, Feb. 22: Women's Tennis vs. Whitworth, Tennis Pavilion, 4 p.m.

Friday, Feb. 22: Wind Ensemble, Gerard Morris, conductor; Matthew Coley, guest artist, Schneebeck Concert Hall, 7:30 p.m. World premiere of Andrew Ardizzoia's Glass House Concerto for Percussion and Wind Ensemble.

Sunday, Feb. 24: Step Afrika!, Schneebeck Concert Hall, 7:30 p.m. Tickets: $7 general, $4 Puget Sound community

Monday, Feb. 25: Black History Month Slam Poetry and Spoken Word, Black Student Union, Rasmussen Rotunda, WSC, 11 a.m.–2 p.m.

Monday, Feb. 25: Sustainability, Style, and Scientific Objectivity in the 'Ithaca" Episode of James Joyce's Ulysses, William Kupinse, English, Murray Board Room, WSC, 4 p.m.

Monday, Feb. 25: American Voices: Education, Race, and Criminal Justice, Paul Rucker, scholar in residence and interdisciplinary artist, Schneebeck Concert Hall, 7 p.m.