OWU in the News

Jean Whiteside Hodges ’55 Elected President of PFLAG National

December 15, 2014 – by Ohio Wesleyan University

Robert Gitter

Also in OWU in the News: Mark Knall ’94, Robert Gitter, Sean Kay, Robert Flanagan, Joel Daunic ’65, Larry Robinson ’69, William Poist ’62, Colleen Garland, and Ohio Wesleyan University/Five Colleges of Ohio.

Jean Whiteside Hodges ’55

Jean Whiteside Hodges ’55

Jean Hodges is elected president of PFLAG National, the nation’s largest organization of parents, families, and allies united with lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer people (LGBTQ).

Hodges is a longtime member of the organization, having co-founded its Boulder, Colorado, chapter and served as its president. She also has served as a regional director, chairperson of the Regional Directors Council, and vice president of the National Board of Directors.

“Jean Hodges has been an integral member of the PFLAG National Board of Directors for years, boldly leading on a number of issues,” said Jody M. Huckaby, PFLAG National’s executive director. “Her background as a PFLAG mom, educator, community organizer, citizen lobbyist for equality, and advocate for inclusion in her faith community make her an ideal leader for this transitional moment in PFLAG’s history.”

In accepting the national presidency, Hodges said: “I’m honored and excited to lead PFLAG during this time of rapid social change. … The challenges ahead are exciting: working for legal protections in every state, helping to make faith communities accepting, eliminating employment discrimination for our LGBTQ loved ones, advocating for gender-neutral spaces in schools for trans and gender-variant children, just to name a few.”

Read the complete announcement, “PFLAG National Announces New President, New Inclusive Name.”

Mark Knall ’94

Mark Knall ’94

Mark Knall is named vice president and general manager of Gulfstream Aerospace Corp.’s facility in Appleton, Wisconsin.

The facility is a maintenance, repair, and overhaul site for all Gulfstream aircraft and a completions center for many large-cabin jets. The location has more than 900 employees and more than 300,000 square feet of hangar, shop, and support space.

Prior to joining Gulfstream, Knall spent nearly 20 years at Pratt & Whitney in East Hartford, Connecticut. He earned his OWU bachelor’s degree in politics and government and, later, a law degree with honors from the University of Connecticut.

Read the complete announcement, “Gulfstream Names Mark Knall Vice President and General Manager of Gulfstream Appleton.”

Robert Gitter

Robert Gitter

As part of a Columbus Dispatch special investigation, professor Bob Gitter, Ph.D., discusses the economic issues impacting Ohio’s home-health workers. According to the newspaper, the industry is the state’s fastest-growing employment area, but wages are low and turnover is high.

“If you’re losing one-third of your workers every year, there are going to be real problems in a lot of different ways,” Gitter tells reporters. “It hurts the quality, the continuity, of care.”

At Ohio Wesleyan, Gitter teaches courses in labor economics, public finance (the role of government in the economy), principles, and econometrics. Last year, he co-wrote reports for the Ohio Department of Medicaid.

“When you look at what’s happened in the American economy, technology has displaced a lot of middle-skill jobs,” Gitter tells writers Rita Price and Ben Sutherly. “Although the demand for home-health jobs has increased — so rightfully you would expect to see wages go up — I think the potential supply of workers has gone up, too.”

Read the complete Dispatch special investigation, “Home care for vulnerable Ohioans leans hard on poorly paid workers.”

Sean Kay

Sean Kay

Sean Kay, Ph.D., professor of politics and government, shares his winter break reading ideas as part of “The War on the Rocks 2014 Holiday Reading List.”

Kay, currently working on a book that examines how rock ’n’ roll has advanced major change across America and throughout the world, recommends “Rocking the Wall: Bruce Springsteen – The Untold Story of a Concert in East Berlin that Changed the World” by Erik Kirschbaum and “In His Own Words” by Pete Seeger.

Regarding the power and impact of music, Kay says: “In November 2014, Bruce Springsteen sang the John Fogerty song ‘Fortunate Son, at the Mall in Washington, D.C. – and was attacked for doing that. The real story though was why was it that an artist raised questions about war, while Congress stood silent?”

Read “The War on the Rocks 2014 Holiday Reading List.”

Robert Flanagan

Robert Flanagan

The latest book by retired OWU professor Robert Flanagan, who spent 30 years as the University’s creative writing director, is reviewed in The (Toledo) Blade.

In her review, reporter Athena Cocoves writes: “His newest collection of works, ‘Story Hour & Other Stories,’ presents Flanagan in his authentic, believable and reflective style. … ‘Story Hour’ catalogues the lives and minds of 11 very different characters through third-person narrative.

“The thoughts of old men, young men and those in-between are all represented, with meditations on love, loss and struggle,” Cocoves states. “Although Flanagan does not present an optimistic message, he is not cynical. Rather, Flanagan lays real experiences on the table and invites his readers to take what they wish.”

Read the complete Toledo Blade article, “Stories of sincerity: A Toledo-born author on honesty and relationships.”

Joel Daunic ’65

Joel Daunic ’65

Joel Daunic is inducted into the Manhattanville (New York) Athletics Hall of Fame in recognition of his role as the college’s first athletic director. With his induction, he is heralded as “arguably the most influential person in the establishment and growth of intercollegiate athletics at Manhattanville College during the 1970s and 1980s.”

“He guided the athletic department toward NCAA and Division III membership for all sports,” according to the Hall of Fame announcement. “When he arrived on campus, the department had only three club sports in a formerly all-women’s college; by the time he left in 1983, he had turned Manhattanville into a thriving program that sponsored 14 varsity sports as well as club and intramural offerings.”

Read more about Daunic’s career and Hall of Fame induction.

Larry Robinson ’69

Larry Robinson ’69

Larry Robinson, a 35-year psychotherapist and counselor whose “Mindful Thinking” Facebook page boasts 165,000 followers from around the world, publishes a new book, “Mirror, Mirror: Reflections of Self.”

Robinson describes the book as a 365-day life journal with questions to answer and spaces for readers to write in. He says the book “digs deep within our psyche to teach us all about how we truly feel. … Each person who reads ‘Mirror, Mirror’ will enrich their life by facing issues that people all have and finding resolutions.”

In addition to his Ohio Wesleyan degree, Robinson holds a Master’s in Counseling Education from Boston University.

Read more about Robinson and his new book.

William Poist ’62

William Poist ’62

Bill Poist and his tennis doubles partner, Donald Mathias, win the Alfredo Trullenque ITF Seniors tournament in Santiago, Chile, propelling Poist to the International Tennis Federation world No. 1 ranking in the age 75-plus division.

This year, the two Florida residents also won the 31st Nautico San Isidro (Argentina) International tournament, as well as tournaments in Cognac and Bordeaux, France. In addition, Poist finished second with Tom Brunkow of Washington, D.C., at the ITF World Championships in Antalya, Turkey.

Poist, a member of the Ohio Wesleyan Athletic Hall of Fame, led the Battling Bishop tennis teams to successive conference and NCAA regional titles from 1960-62. He talks about his tennis success and life with reporter Chris Felker of The Coastal Star.

Read Felker’s complete article, “Tennis: Doubles, in sport and travel, the right choice for Poist.”

Colleen Garland

Colleen Garland

Colleen Garland, Ohio Wesleyan’s vice president for university relations, is named 2014’s “Outstanding Professional Fundraiser” by the Association of Fundraising Professionals (AFP) Central Ohio Chapter.

Garland, who joined OWU in 2011, is recognized during the 2014 Central Ohio National Philanthropy Day Celebration held in Columbus.

According to the organization, “AFP honors those who hold high ethical standards and best exemplify commitment and dedication toward helping society. These awards are given in recognition to those individuals and organizations whose life-time or long-term achievements have made a significant impact upon society.”

See a video tribute to Garland featuring OWU colleague Jenny Joerger.

Five Colleges of Ohio

Ohio Wesleyan University/Five Colleges of Ohio

Five Colleges of Ohio Inc., which includes Ohio Wesleyan University, receives a $2 million grant from the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation to create a postdoctoral fellowship program to support the teaching of foreign languages. The grant is the largest awarded to the consortium since it was founded in 1995.

Read the complete announcement, “Five Colleges awarded $2M grant,” in the Delaware Gazette.