Celebrating Your Membership
George Eastman Circle members Charles R. Munnerlyn ’69 (PhD) and Judith G. Munnerlyn celebrated the launch of the San Francisco Bay regional campaign for The Meliora Challenge with President Joel Seligman, on June 5, at The St. Regis San Francisco.
What an exciting spring for the George Eastman Circle. We began with our fifth annual New York City Dinner in March and welcomed record-breaking attendance to Gotham Hall. We celebrated the official launch of the Rochester Regional Leadership Council in April, and the University’s San Francisco Bay Regional Campaign last week. George Eastman Circle members Joe Abrams ’74S (MBA) P’02 and Carol Karp ’74, P’11 are leading the San Francisco Bay Regional Campaign, building upon the foundation of leadership provided by fellow Charter Member and Chairman Emeritus of the San Francisco Bay Regional Cabinet, Charles Munnerlyn ’69 (PhD).
To top it all off, last month Rochester conferred nearly 3,100 bachelor’s, master’s, and doctoral degrees. For many of these students, this was a dream realized. For some students, it was a dream that our gifts made possible. Through millions of dollars in gift commitments, across schools and disciplines, we have enhanced the opportunity for young men and women to receive a Rochester education, regardless of their means. Every year, your support makes this possible. Thank you for your dedication to our students!
After our first five years of work, we are more than 2,180 memberships strong and continue to grow. Our collective impact has been nothing short of remarkable. With each new member who joins us—and for each current member who renews their commitment—we are able to further support student scholarships, programming, and hands-on learning opportunities in the community, across the country, and abroad. This is a small sample of the tangible ways we have an impact on the University. Your dedication also enables the enrichment of Rochester’s cultural environment and ensures the delivery of "Medicine of the Highest Order." Building upon and utilizing our momentum not only increases that impact, but also broadens its scope.
Starting with this issue, we will share an Annual Fund update which reflects our progress toward our $130 million Annual Fund goal of The Meliora Challenge. Each and every George Eastman Circle gift is part of the total and, as you know, we are playing a critical role in the success of the Campaign. As the University’s fiscal year comes to a close at the end of June, I encourage you to help maintain that success by paying your pledge, if you haven’t already.
Your continued commitment is touching lives—like those of the recent graduates who aspire to make a difference in the world—in this community and around the globe. Through the improvements in education, research, health care, and the arts that your support enables, we are making the future of the University and the world ever better.
Please be sure to read this issue's member profile featuring Kristin Nelson. Kristin is a Charter Member and the mother of a recent graduate, who recently renewed her commitment to the George Eastman Circle.
Nathan Moser ’75
Member, Board of Trustees
Chair, George Eastman Circle
Joe Scarborough and Barbara Walters
Save the dates for Meliora Weekend and join us in Rochester for an exclusive George Eastman Circle event. Former congressman and host of MSNBC’s “Morning Joe,” Joe Scarborough (R-Fla.), will deliver a special evening address exclusively for George Eastman Circle members and their guests on Friday, October 12. Scarborough is the author of The New York Times bestseller The Last Best Hope: Restoring Conservatism and America's Promise. He also served as a member of Congress from 1994–2001 and publisher and editor of the award-winning newspaper The Florida Sun.
The weekend will be packed with hundreds of events for the University community to enjoy, including a keynote address by veteran journalist Barbara Walters on Saturday, October 13. Walters is a correspondent for ABC news, host of “The Barbara Walters Specials,” and creator, co-host, and executive producer of “The View.” She, along with noted entertainer, Craig Ferguson, will be headlining this year’s Meliora Weekend celebration, which runs October 11–14.
All George Eastman Circle members will have early access to Meliora Weekend registration and exclusive access to Joe Scarborough’s Meliora Weekend address. Additionally, members will have the chance to purchase up to four tickets to Barbara Walters' keynote address. More details about all of the Meliora Weekend events and specific information about how to purchase tickets will be mailed to homes this summer.
Be sure to stay up-to-date on the latest events and registration news by visiting the Meliora Weekend Web site at www.rochester.edu/melioraweekend. If you have additional questions, please contact the office of donor relations at (585) 275-7393 or by e-mail at DonorRelations@rochester.edu.
All of our members have wonderful stories to share. We are pleased to feature one such story from a parent of a graduating senior who recently renewed her George Eastman Circle commitment.
Kristin K. Nelson P’12 and Ashley F. Nelson ’12
During Kristin Nelson’s first visit to the University of Rochester with her daughter, Ashley ’12, the beautiful campus and opportunities for undergraduate research pushed the University to the top of her—and Ashley’s—list. Four years later, “I am even more impressed with the University,” says Kristin. “It’s a place that really helps students work toward their dreams so they can achieve them.”
Ashley, who graduated Phi Beta Kappa with a double major in psychology and religion this May, describes how the cluster program and faculty were critical to her success at the University. She came to Rochester as a psychology and math major, but soon decided she didn’t want to pursue math. With encouragement from her advisor, she tried a religion class, an area she hadn’t thought of exploring further. She loved the professor so much she changed from math to religion as her second major and completed an honors thesis. “Professors Merideth, Guillory, and Homerin have given me endless support and advice. It is because of the religion department that I am prepared for studies at the graduate level in social work.”
Grateful for the outstanding experience Ashley had at Rochester, Kristin became a Charter Member of the George Eastman Circle during her daughter’s freshman year, and recently renewed her commitment to become a Sustaining Member after Ashley graduated. Through her George Eastman Circle renewal, Kristin is honoring the professors who played such a critical role in her daughter’s education while providing valuable annual support to help continue their exceptional work and influence at Rochester. She is also helping sustain the excellence of the Rochester experience that first drew her and her daughter to campus from their home state, Colorado.
“I think it’s important that people realize that tuition does not cover the ‘real’ cost of an education and all the extra opportunities that the University of Rochester gives its students. My renewed support through the George Eastman Circle helps ensure the opportunities for research, the support from faculty, and the encouragement to be the best you can be and to always challenge yourself to be ‘ever better’ will live on for years to come.”
Gwen M. Greene ’65
The Meliora Challenge is now 63 percent complete, and the George Eastman Circle is playing a significant role in its success. Every George Eastman Circle member’s gift contributes to the $130 million Annual Fund goal. To date, the Annual Fund has received $87 million, which represents 67 percent of the goal.
“Our collective support exemplifies the spirit of Meliora,” said Gwen M. Greene ’65, chair of University Annual Giving Programs and member of the Board of Trustees. “Together we can accomplish anything. Raising $130 million through Annual Giving is just the beginning.”
In future issues of the George Eastman Circle newsletter, look for a new goal thermometer that will track Annual Fund progress throughout the duration of this extraordinary and comprehensive Campaign. To read more about The Meliora Challenge, please click here.
Reaching the $1.2 billion goal of The Meliora Challenge: The Campaign for the University of Rochester will require leadership of all kinds. George Eastman Circle members are playing a significant role in the progress we have made thus far. Their generosity and longtime commitment to supporting the University’s faculty, students, programs, Annual Fund, and facilities are critical to advancing our mission to Learn, Discover, Heal, Create—and make the world ever better. The following recent gifts demonstrate how George Eastman Circle members continue to be the leaders and exemplars of this Campaign:
- University Trustee Roger Friedlander ’56 and his wife, Carolyn Friedlander ’68N established the Dr. Elizabeth R. McAnarney Professorship in Pediatrics Funded by Roger and Carolyn Friedlander in honor of their longtime friend and colleague, Dr. McAnarney. Click here for more information.
- University Trustee Dr. Nathaniel “Nat” Wisch ’55 and his wife Helen have helped advance the field of biology with the creation of the Nathaniel and Helen Wisch Professorship in Biology. Click here for more.
- Ani Gabrellian ’84 and Mark Gabrellian ’79 championed multidisciplinary learning and research through the establishment of the Ani and Mark Gabrellian Professorship and funding for the Mesrob Mashtots Innovation Grant program. Click here for more.
- University Trustee Bernard “Bernie” Ferrari ’70, ’74M (MD) and his wife, Linda Gaddis Ferrari, endowed the yearly Ferrari Humanities Symposia to broaden and enrich the liberal arts education of undergraduates. Click here for more.
George Eastman Circle Rochester Regional Leadership Council, April 2012
To see the list of all Rochester Leadership Council members, click here
The new George Eastman Circle Leadership Council for the Rochester Region held its inaugural meeting in April at the Country Club of Rochester. The reception that followed showcased the impact of membership on the University and the impact of the University on the world. Inspired by these examples, more than 17 new members joined immediately—they are now among the more than 1,400 George Eastman Circle members in the Rochester region.
Led by Honorary Chair Phil Saunders and Co-Chairs Alexander (Sandy) Williams ’92, Courtney Williams ’87, and John Paganelli, the Rochester Leadership Council was formed to promote the Eastman Circle to the University’s alumni, parents, and friends in the Rochester community. The Council membership represents all units of the University according to their volunteer interests, professional associations, and academic degrees.
The Rochester Council is now a blueprint for additional leadership groups as we extend our reach into other key regions and cities. Recently, Drew Mittelman ’68 became chair of the George Eastman Circle Boston Leadership Council.
To find out how to help build momentum in your region or to learn more about how you can host a George Eastman Circle reception, please contact Nancy Goldsmith Zawacki, director of marketing at firstname.lastname@example.org.
George Eastman Circle Dinner at Gotham Hall in New York City
More than 425 members and guests attended the annual New York City George Eastman Circle Dinner on March 15 at Gotham Hall—the highest attendance in the event’s five-year history. The evening celebrated a year of remarkable growth and its impact on the University’s faculty, students, schools, units, and the community it serves.
Featured speakers included Board Chair Ed Hajim ’58, Trustee and George Eastman Circle National Chair Nathan Moser ’75, Trustee and Annual Giving Programs Chair Gwen Greene ’65, student Nathan Novosel ’12, recipient of the Cathy E. Minnehan and E. Gerald Corrigan Endowed Scholarship, and President Joel Seligman. Their remarks commended members for their gifts, which total more than $38 million, to date. George Eastman Circle members' gifts account for more than 40 percent of the $87 million received for the $130 million Annual Fund goal of The Meliora Challenge.
Maureen Dowd, The New York Times columnist and bestselling author, provided the evening’s keynote address. Alumni, Victoria Paterson ’93 and Robert Paterson ’95E, and the Lumière String Quartet provided the evening’s music.
Charlotte F. and Charles S. Faulkner II ’61M (MD), ’63M (Res)
"...Not only did Dr. Orbison expect, even at this very first session, that we would have prepared for the session by reading in the text, but he also knew us by name! We would have no escape from his high expectations!
"Dr. Orbison went on to teach the whole General Pathology section of the course, entirely by the Socratic technique, eliciting most of the information from the class. This tour de force placed him firmly in my lexicon as the best teacher I have ever encountered. It was a major influence in my decision to take a year off in pathology. That year, in turn, introduced me to the real world of the practice of pathology, and led me to choose pathology for my career, and Strong for my residency."
To read more of Charles's Meliora Moment, click here.
What’s your Meliora Moment? To share it with us, please click here.