News Archives:
Branches (May 13) campus news briefs
May 13, 2003

Kathleen Kennedy Townsend to deliver commencement address at Olivet College

Olivet College will recognize approximately 123 candidates for graduation during commencement exercises Sunday, May 18 at 2 p.m., on the Blair Hall lawn. The public is welcome to attend.

Kathleen Kennedy Townsend, the commencement speaker, served as Marylands first woman Lt. Governor. She will receive the honorary degree of Doctor of Laws. State Rep. Michael Murphy of Lansing will receive the honorary degree of Doctor of Humane Letters.

During her tenure as Lt. Governor, Townsend worked on issues such as improving schools, fighting crime, economic development and ensuring children and seniors are receiving quality health care. She was instrumental in making Maryland the first state in the nation to require all high school students perform community service. In addition, she created the first statewide office of Character Education; ensuring Maryland schools focused on values and taught students right from wrong.

As Marylands point person on criminal justice, Townsend created HotSpots, a program that brought together law enforcement and community leaders to fight crime. Hailed as a national model, HotSpots reduced violent crime at record rates. She used this strategy to maximize Marylands other anti-crime efforts. Aimed at keeping people who are on parole and probation off drugs, her Break the Cycle anti-drug initiative dropped drug use by 56 percent among offenders.

Prior to serving as Marylands Lt. Governor, Townsend served as Deputy Assistant Attorney General of the United States, was the founder and director of the Maryland Student Service Alliance, and was an environmental attorney both in private practice and as an Assistant Attorney General in Maryland. She also managed Sen. Edward M. Kennedys successful election campaign in 1982.

Townsend, the eldest child of Robert and Ethel Kennedy, lives in Baltimore County with her husband, David. They have four daughters.

Murphy is serving his second term as a member of the Michigan House of Representatives. He sits on the House Commerce, Energy and Technology, and Transportation committees, and is co-chair of the Legislative Childrens Caucus. Prior to being elected to the House of Representatives, Murphy was a member of the Lansing City Council, serving his last year as president.

Murphy currently serves on the Capital City African-American Cultural Association board, and is the pastor and founder of the St. Stephens Community Church, United Church of Christ in Lansing. He has served on the Michigan Municipal League Legislative and Urban Affairs Committee, the Lansing Blue Ribbon Committee on Downtown Revitalization, and he is a former Childrens Services Advisor to the Governor.

Alumni Reunion Day to be held May 17

Join the classes of 1928, 1933, 1938 and 1943 as they commemorate their 75th, 70th, 65th and 60th class reunions, respectively.

The Womens Board of Olivet College will meet at

9:30 a.m. at the Presidents house at 217 Yale St. Following the social time the meeting will begin at 10 a.m.

The Alumni Council will meet at 10 a.m. in the Blue Room of Dole Hall. There will be a luncheon with President Don Tuski 85 for alumni, friends and graduates at 12:30 p.m. in Klock Commons.

LaToya Marks, a senior from Cleveland, Ohio, will speak as a representative of her class at the luncheon. Marks is a business administration major with a concentration in management.

A tour of the library and church will take place with guide Lindsay Westgate at 3 p.m. Alumni will finish the days activities with a reception at the Presidents house.

Baccalaureate and Commencement

Sunday, May 18, 2003

10 to 11:30 a.m. A buffet meal in the Kirk Center. Prices are $7.95 for adults, $3.95 for children ages four to 12, and $5 for Olivet College employees.

11:30 a.m. All employees are invited to line up for the processional in the basement of Mott. Faculty will wear their regalia. Other employees are encouraged to participate (regalia optional).

Noon Baccalaureate Service: Clair V. Stevens 80, J.D., adjunct instructor of business since 1999, has been chosen by the students to be the faculty speaker. Seniors Ponja Davenport, from Olivet; William J. Deemer, from Gaylord; and Hector A. Plahar, from Accra, Ghana, have been selected by their peers to give readings during the ceremony.

Davenport, who is graduating with an individualized major, was asked to speak after receiving the John J. Shipherd Award at the colleges 2003 Honors Convocation. This award is given to the person who is most helpful to the senior class.

Deemer majored in business administration with a concentration in insurance and a minor in mathematics. Plahar studied computer science.

1:30 p.m. All employees will line up for the commencement processional in the basement of Mott. This is a required event for full-time faculty, who will wear their regalia. All other employees are encouraged to participate (regalia optional).

2 p.m. Commencement ceremonies will begin on the lawn of Blair Hall. Anthony S. Scott 03 will speak for his graduating class. Kathleen Kennedy Townsend will deliver the commencement address. She will receive an honorary Doctor of Laws degree.

The Rev. Michael C. Murphy will receive an honorary Doctor of Humane Letters.

Commencement Reception Following the exercises, a commencement reception will be held north of the square near the library. Should inclement weather occur, the reception will be held in the Lester K. Kirk Center. All are welcome.

Post-commencement picnic

All college employees, along with their guests and families, are invited to the annual post-commencement picnic (rain or shine) at the Hance House immediately following the commencement reception (approximately 4:30 p.m.)


This is the final issue of Branches for spring semester 2003. See you in the fall.

Olivet College summer business hours

Beginning Monday, May 19 through Friday, Aug. 8, the Olivet College work day will be 8:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. with a 30-minute lunch break. Regular business hours will begin on Monday, Aug. 11. All offices must be staffed and fully operational during these core business hours. Individual supervisors may elect to modify schedules within offices as required to meet specific office obligations.

Holiday schedule:

Monday, May 26 (Memorial Day)

Friday, July 4 (Independence Day)

Knight retires as Olivet College head softball coach; Farnum promoted

James Knight, Olivet Colleges head softball coach, has announced his retirement, effective immediately. James Farnum, an assistant coach the last two years under Knight, has been promoted to head coach, according to an announcement by Tom Shaw, vice president for enrollment management and interim director of athletics.

Knight ended his fourth year as head coach for the Lady Comets on May 2 and 3 with a second-place finish at the 2003 Michigan Intercollegiate Athletic Association (MIAA) Tournament. While at Olivet, he compiled a 73-1042 record, including a 19-19 overall record this spring. Knight, Farnum and assistant coach Bob Turcheck were selected as the 2003 MIAA Softball Coaching Staff of the Year.

Prior to coming to Olivet, Knight had a successful career as a coach and teacher at Lakeview High School, where he retired in 1998. He coached boys and girls basketball, baseball, cross country and softball for a total of 63 seasons. He compiled more than 600 wins in basketball and 300 victories in softball.

Farnum, a 1993 graduate of Alma College, will continue to serve as an assistant coach with the Comet football program and teach in the colleges health, physical education, recreation and sport department.

At Alma, Farnum was a four-year letterwinner on the football team. After graduation, he served as an assistant softball coach for seven years and assistant football coach for five years at Alma.

Five Olivet College players selected to the 2003 All-MIAA Softball Teams

Five Olivet College student-athletes have been selected to the 2003 All-Michigan Intercollegiate Athletic Association Softball Teams. Head Coach James Knight and assistant coaches James Farnum and Bob Turcheck were selected as the 2003 MIAA Coaching Staff of the Year.

Junior pitcher Stacey Dulinski (Manistee High School), junior catcher Theresa Flowers (Waterford/Kettering High School) and junior first baseman Kim Horanburg (Grand Ledge High School) were named to the first-team. Junior second baseman Kari Munson (Lansing/Eastern High School) and sophomore Jill Shufelt (Millington High School) earned second-team honors. All-MIAA honors are based on a player stats in league games.

Dulinski compiled a 7-4 record with a 2.04 earned run average and opponents hit .212 against her. She walked 14 batters and struck out 29 in 65 and one-third innings. Flowers was second on the team with a .385 batting average. She led the team with 20 base hits, two home runs, .558 slugging percentage and nine RBI. Horanburg led Comets with a .388 batting average and four doubles. She committed only two errors in 126 chances for a .984 fielding percentage.

Munson hit .321 with three doubles, a triple, a homer and five RBIs. She led the Comets with a .472 on-base percentage. Shufelt was fourth in hitting at .277. She played a perfect outfield with no errors in 23 chances, including throwing four assists for outs at home plate.

Senior Amy Hillis (Morley High School) picked up coaches honorable mention honors.

Beau Locker and Steve Held selected to the 2003 All-MIAA Baseball Teams

Junior centerfielder Beau Locker (Coldwater/Union City High School) and senior shortstop Steve Held (Brampton, Ontario/Saint Augustine) have been selected to the 2003 All-Michigan Intercollegiate Athletic Association Baseball Teams. Locker is a first-team choice and Held is a second-team pick. All-MIAA honors are based on a player stats in league games.

Locker and Held led the Fighting Comets to a second-place finish in the MIAA standings with a 12-6 mark. Olivet had a 23-17 overall record, which is the fourth time since 1956 that the Comets have won 20 or more games.

Locker scored a league-leading 24 runs and was second with a .460 batting average (29-of-63). He was third with 43 total bases and a .683 slugging percentage. Held shared the league lead with seven doubles and was fourth with a .404 batting average, a .654 slugging percentage and 19 RBIs.

Junior pitcher D.J. Celetti (Sault Ste. Marie, Canada/Notre Dame), sophomore right fielder Matt Hurley (Sault Ste. Marie, Canada/White Plains), junior pitcher Josh Kellogg (Morley/Stanwood High School), junior second baseman Joe Richards (Galesburg/Augusta High School), freshman third baseman Jason Rooley (Sault Ste. Marie, Canada/Korah) and senior catcher/first baseman James Virden (Branch/Mason County Central High School) picked up coaches honorable mention honors.

On Tap at Olivet

May 16 ILT ends

May 16 Gamma Iota Sigma Four-Person Golf Scramble 11 a.m., Royal Scot of Lansing

May 17 Alumni Day

May 17 Graduating seniors rehearsal 10 a.m., Mott Auditorium

May 18 Baccaleaurate and Commencement

June 19 Leadership Dinner 5:30 p.m., Lester K. Kirk Center

June 20 Board of Trustees meeting

June 20 Alumni Night Lansing Lugnuts vs. Burlington Bees Baseball Game 7:05 p.m., Oldsmobile Park, Lansing

July 18 2003 Olivet College Alumni Classic

9 a.m. shotgun start, Medalist Golf Club, Marshall

July 26 Comet Classic 5K Run and Stroll through the Oaks 8:30 a.m., Race starts in front of Burrage Library

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