Dinner Report

Dear Members of the Advisory Board, Jr. Board, Honored Faculty and Friends:

We were 100 strong, dashing through a cool twilight drizzle, ducking into the Rotunda, greeting old friends and meeting new ones, with cold drinks and warm hugs.

Then up to the Dome Room, where Boots said a quiet grace before the room again filled with laughter and convivial dinner conversation.

At eight, we began with a few acknowledgements and thanks, then set the tone with the documentary video about Boots.  Every year, many who have seen it before ask if we’ve changed it; we haven’t, but it seems as though there is always something in it to notice for the first time.

Boots took the podium to dispense a few words of eternal wisdom.  A standing ovation seemed to float him back to his chair with new vigor.

Then each of last year’s faculty honorees had the challenge of condensing a year’s worth of extraordinary efforts into a three minute report.  All were inspirational. Some were even three minutes!

Below are a few pictures from the reports. Click here to listen to the album of children’s music written and professionally produced by music faculty member Ted Coffee and his students, working with Charlottesville children.

Then Deans Woo, Bruner (by video) and Aylor introduced the incoming faculty honorees from the College, Darden and Engineering, and announced their Dream Idea projects.

By video, Dean Zethaml announced the first recipient of the Lindgren Award, named in honor of recently retired faculty member Jack Lindgren, which will allow the McIntire School to participate on an annual basis as well.

You can read bio’s of the faculty honorees here and short descriptions of their projectshere.

We then announced the expansion of the Mead Money program to all four of the above-mentioned schools, whose faculty will soon receive two vouchers, each good for two free meals when they treat a student.

The evening finished with this thought:

For our guests, this year’s Mead Honored Faculty, we have one more wish.

We wish that each of you is fortunate enough to live to the ripe old age of 95.

And that, though your steps may slow, your mind does not.

And though your eyesight may dim, your charm can still light a room.

And when that time comes, may the book you are most proud of, be not the one you wrote, but the one your students wrote about you, filled with fond reminiscences, and funny anecdotes, and heartfelt thanks.

We hope that long after dust has gathered on your scholarly articles and awards, perhaps your friends will still gather, as we are gathered — right here, right now — to salute you… to hold you up as a shining example of what is possible…
to say “thank you”…to say “we love you.”

For long after the breakthroughs you made in your field are but footnotes, the breakthroughs you made with students — when you kindled their curiosity, or inspired their imagination – those moments changed their lives.

And thus.. you changed the world… for the better… forever.

That is our wish for you.  As we wish you good luck.  And good night.

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