In response to an article in the last issue of The Pulteney Street Survey, I received a letter, excerpted below, from brothers and Hobart alumni Steven K. Gale ’69 and Robert Peter Gale ’66.
“Colleagues, friends and family often ask how both of us ended up in a small, liberal arts college in upstate New York.... The fact is, we watched, maybe glued is a better word, the G.E. College Bowl on our mid- sized black and white TV... So why Hobart you ask? None other than Jerry Levy, Class of 1963, lived on the third floor of our apartment building. My parents did not have the opportunity to go to college and were bowled over that Jerry from “downstairs” was on prime- time TV four or five weeks in a row looking mighty sharp and knowledgeable. One evening we were herded into the kitchen of our apartment, told that if this school turned Jerry into an academic superstar, then we might have a chance too. Our fate was sealed when Hobart went undefeated on the G.E. College Bowl. Little did we know that Hobart and William Smith would provide us with an outstanding education, a lifetime love of learning, and the essential liberal arts tools needed to succeed today. We hope you are happy now, Jerry!”
Both Gale brothers went on to successful careers. After receiving his Ph.D. in psychology, Steven served in government and is currently the senior adviser for strategic opportunities in the Office of Science and Technology at the U.S. Agency for International Development. Robert is one of the world’s leading experts on radiation and coordinated medical relief efforts after the Chernobyl nuclear disaster. A physician and prolific author, he is the executive director of clinical research in hematology and oncology at Celgene Corporation. Like the Gale brothers, Jerome T. Levy ’63 has led an equally interesting life. After receiving his law degree from New York University, he went on to become a noted and sought after specialist in New York State health law and is a partner with Duane Morris LLP.
In many ways, the stories of these three men illustrate the mission of the Colleges – to prepare young men and women to lead lives of consequence. This issue of The Pulteney Street Survey profiles some of these young men and women, members of the Classes of 2012 who have distinguished themselves in the classroom and the laboratory, on the playing fields and the stage, in their engagement with the community and their passion for global education. With them every step of the way are the dedicated members of our faculty who have devoted their lives to teaching and scholarship. The commitment and distinguished service of our faculty are recognized by the Alumni and Alumnae Councils through the Distinguished Faculty Awards (p.10). This tradition of engagement in the classroom continues today with active, creative teacher- scholars. The accomplishments of three of these faculty members, recipients of the 2012 Faculty Prizes, are detailed on the following pages (p.3-4).
The late Professor Emeritus of
History Robert A. Huff
The partnerships formed between students and faculty members – those bonds that define a college career – frequently last a lifetime. So it was with great sadness that we learned in March that Professor Emeritus of History Robert A. Huff, who taught at the Colleges from 1962 to 1992, passed away. A beloved member of the Hobart and William Smith community, Professor Huff’s dedication to the Colleges was evidenced through his many collaborations with his colleagues, his thoughtful exploration of the curriculum, his unwavering standards of excellence in scholarship, and the great joy he took in seeing his students succeed.
Remembered by his students as “the best of the great professors we had at college” and by his colleagues as “simply the single best teacher we have on campus,” Professor Huff received the Distinguished Faculty Award in 1999, the highest accolade bestowed on a faculty member by alumni and alumnae. Our graduates demonstrated their admiration for Professor Huff with the generous establishment of the Robert A. Huff Scholarship providing financial aid to HWS students from New York City.
Mary and I received Bob’s warm “New England welcome” from our very first days moving to Geneva. I frequently solicited his views on matters before the Colleges as I valued his counsel. I always appreciated his good humor, warm hospitality and the many kindnesses he extended to my family. In honor of Professor Huff and his strong influence on our entire HWS community, the American flag on the HWS campus was flown at half-mast for a week, a small but heartfelt recognition of the difference he made in the lives of his students.
With every best wish, I remain
Mark D. Gearan