The last Faculty Assembly of the academic year, held April 26 in the Bill Bordy Theater, included a few pleasant surprises.
Unbeknownst to the faculty members who packed the assembly, members of the Faculty Council took this opportunity to honor President Jacqueline Liebergott with a Lifetime Achievement Award. They also recognized three people from the president’s “special cluster” for their dedicated support over the years. Faculty Council Chair Brooke Knight acknowledged the president’s husband, Harvey Liebergott; Director of the President’s Office Anne Shaughnessy; and former Emerson Board of Trustees Chair Ted Cutler ’51.
“This has been a transformational series of years for me and for the College, and I don’t mean where we are physically,” said Liebergott. “But I mean where we are as an institution. I want to remind you that you can’t do that alone. You have to do that together, and for that I thank you.”
Retired Emerson administrator and longtime Communication Sciences and Disorders instructor Anthony Bashir spoke about his 40-year friendship with President Liebergott. “Remember when we turned our classroom at 168 Beacon Street into a boat to teach contingent verbal responding?” recalled Bashir from the podium. “You and I, and all the wonderful dedicated faculty, designed a program and guided and mentored 12 years of first-year students through the Emerson experience—students who might otherwise not have been here, had it not been for your vision and the creation of the Freshman Academic Studies Program.”
The Council also announced its donation of $4,000 to the new Jacqueline Liebergott Scholarship fund, an initiative spearheaded by Cutler. Visual and Media Arts Professor Tom Cooper noted that the donation would not have been possible without the contributions of Faculty Assembly members and special friends of the assembly.
Communication Sciences and Disorders Chair Daniel Kempler made a final announcement that Graduate Program Director and Associate Professor Cynthia Bartlett will retire after 26 years of teaching at the College. Bartlett served as interim chair of the Communication Sciences and Disorders Department, had a leadership role in the re-accreditation of the College, coordinated the teacher education program for Communication Disorders and Performing Arts, and served as graduate program director for Communication Disorders for close to 20 years.
“During her time as the graduate program director, and not coincidentally,” said Kempler, “the program became nationally ranked, more than doubled in size, and thrived under her leadership.”