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Celebration of Life for Robert K. Cole

A Celebration of Life for Professor Emeritus of Physics (Dornsife College) Robert K. Cole was held Saturday, May 30, 2014, at St. Mark's Presbyterian Church in Van Nuys.  Bob served two terms as President of the RFA from July 2001 to June 2003.  Thirty of Bob's family members, friends, and fellow church members attended the celebration.


Bob Cole Life Celebration Program Cover


Retired Faculty Participate in
USC Commencement 2014

  Dixon Johnson, President of the Staff Retirement Association; Jerry Walker, Director of the USC Emeriti Center College; and Victor Marshand Webb, RFA board member, served as Marshals at USC's 2014 Commencement on Friday, May 16.  Marching at the head of the faculty column were Phoebe Liebig, RFA Past President; Michael Preston, Professor Emeritus of Political Science; Kenneth Servis, RFA board member and former USC Registrar; and Robert Stallings, RFA Vice President.


Marc Benioff


USC 2014 commencement speaker Marc Benioff 86 (USC Photo/Gus Ruelas)


[The text below comes from the May 16, 2014, article by of .]


"Don't forget to do something for others."

Marc Benioff first recalled hearing those life-changing words spoken from a spiritual guru in India.  Decades later, he passed that wisdom on to graduates at USC's 131st commencement on May 16.

Benioff, the CEO of San Francisco-based , has been lauded not only as a pioneer in cloud computing and one of the country's most respected CEOs, but also for his 1-1-1 plan, in which he took the Indian spiritual guru's words to heart.  His company operates under a policy that donates one percent of product, one percent of equity and one percent of employee hours back to the communities it serves.

"The real joy in life comes from giving, from service, from doing things for other people," Benioff told the more than 40,000 graduates, families, and friends gathered in Alumni Park.  "Nothing will make you happier than giving."

Benioff, a USC trustee who graduated from USC in 1986, cited Joelle Benioff, his mother who was honored as a member of the , as his reason for going to college at USC.  ("Mom knows best," he quipped).


Walking Tour of Downtown Los Angeles

USC Professor Emeritus of Geography Curtis C. Roseman led another of his walking tours of downtown Los Angeles on Saturday, May 10, 2014, this one in the Old Historic Core.  Beginning at the Stillwell Hotel on South Grand Avenue, a group of some two dozen walkers, many USC retired staff and faculty, followed Professor Roseman and listened intently as he explained the history and significance of major downtown streets such as Broadway, Spring Street, and Main Street as well specific downtown buildings.  The tour included visits to a theatre in the Jewelry District, St. Vincent's Court, Grand Central Market, Angels Flight, Pershing Square, and the Biltmore Hotel.  (Read more about Professor Roseman's walking tours .)


Professor Curtis Roseman


Professor Roseman standing on the sidewalk in front of the Stillwell Hotel
explaining what the walking tour would be about.


Former Board Member Quoted in Downtown News

USC Professor Emeritus and former RFA board member Robert S. Harris is quoted in two of the last four paragraphs of this May 5, 2014, article in the Los Angeles Downtown News about plans for the former Los Angeles Police Department Parker Center headquarters in downtown Los Angeles.  Click to read the article.


Currents Article on Retirees Involved in University Advancement

The April 2014 issue of Currents, the periodical of the Council for Advancement and Support of Education (CASE), contained an article on retired faculty who help their universities with fundraising and alumni relations.  The article contained extensive comments from RFA member Victor Marshand Webb (p. 26) and USC Emeriti Center Executive Director Janette Brown (p. 27).  Click to read the article, which also contains a group photo of Webb, RFA Past President Phoebe Liebig, RFA Treasurer Jim Halls, and an unidentified recipient of a Caldwell Neighborhood Scholarship.


RFA Officers 2013–2014

RFA Officers 20132014


From the left: William J. Petak, President; Janette C. Brown (Executive Director, USC Emeriti Center); John L. Sanders, Secretary; and Robert A. Stallings, Vice President.  Not pictured: James Halls, Treasurer; Phoebe Liebig, Past President.


RFA Elects New Officers and Board Members

Results of the election of officers and at-large board members for 2014–2015 were announced at the Board of Directors' meeting March 14, 2014.  Bob Stallings (Price School of Public Policy), current Vice President/President Elect, becomes President as current President Bill Petak assumes the duties of Past President.  Kaaren Hoffman (Keck—Medical Education) was elected Treasurer.  Newly elected at-large board members (first three-year term) were Cynthia Berne (Keck—Spouse Member), Peter Nichols (Keck–Pathology), Arnold Platzker (Keck—Pediatrics, Childrens' Hospital), Kenneth Servis (Dornsife—Chemistry, former Registrar), and Beth Shube (Dornsife—Widow).  Elected to second three-year terms were James Halls (Keck—Radiology) and Victor Marshand Webb (Annenberg).  Officers and new board members assume their offices on July 1, 2014.


Faculty Retirees 2012–2013

USC Provost and Senior Vice President Elizabeth Garrett recognized those faculty members who retired during AY 2012–2013 at the annual Provost's Faculty Retirement Recognition Luncheon Wednesday, November 13, 2013, in Town and Gown on the University Park Campus (UPC).


Provost's Luncheon 2013 Group Photo


First Row (Left to Right):  Florian Mansfeld, Irma Fitzgibbons, Arnold Platzker, G. Alexander Moore, Lynne Ticson, Elizabeth Garrett (Provost), Janette Brown (Executive Director, USC Emeriti Center), Parakrama Chandrasoma, and Gloria Orenstein.

Second Row:  Don A. Llewellyn, James Rotter, Maurice Hitchcock, Kenneth Servis, William Maxwell, John Odell, William Petak (RFA President), and Esther Gillies.

Third Row:  Alan Schumitzky, Roger Jelliffe, Ram Kannan, Cage Johnson, William McClure, Chris Zarow, and Sandra Rich.


Provost's Faculty Retirement Recognition Luncheon 2013

RFA President William Petak welcomed honorees and guests to the 2013 luncheon in Town and Gown on the University Park Campus (UPC) Wednesday, November 13, 2013.  Charles Gomer, President of the USC Faculty, and Elizabeth Garrett, USC Provost and Senior Vice President, both spoke.  RFA Vice President Robert Stallings introduced the honorees who had retired during AY 2012–2013.  Twenty-one of the fifty-seven retirees were able to attend.  USC Emeriti Center Executive Director Janette Brown presented the Paul E. Hadley Award for Service to USC to Professor Emeritus David Dows (Department of Chemistry, Dornsife College).



Copyright © 2013
University of Southern California


Holiday Breakfast 2013

The Staff Retirement Association/Emeriti Center/RFA annual Holiday Breakfast was held December 5, 2013, in Town and Gown.  Parmer Fuller, Adjunct Assistant Professor of Vocal Arts, Thornton School of Music, and 10 of his students provided musical entertainment.  Carolyn Watanabe and her colleagues in the SRA pulled off yet another enjoyable holiday event.



Copyright © 2013
University of Southern California


A Personal Invitation from the RFA


RFA Honors Robert Baker
at 32nd Street Magnet School

On March 19, 2013, the USC Retired Faculty Association Board of Directors presented a $1,000 check to the 32nd Street/USC Magnet School for Visual and Performing Arts, a member of the USC Family of Schools.  The gift was made in memory of Dr. Robert L. Baker, former RFA President and Professor Emeritus in the Rossier School of Education.  The fund was made possible by individual donations from RFA board members who chose the 32nd Street/USC Magnet School in accordance with the Baker family's wishes to support local public schools.


Caldwell Scholars Luncheon 14 September 2012


Phoebe Liebig (above, right), RFA President, presented the gift to the Principal, Ezequiel Gonzalez (above, left), a graduate of the Rossier School.  [To continue reading, click .]