The yearly Founder’s Day Celebration honors members of the Kalamazoo College community who have contributed years of service to the College. President Eileen Wilson-Oyelaran spoke of the College’s 183 year history and the history of the Founder’s Day ceremony during Community Reflection on Friday, April 22. In attendance was Elizabeth Harris, the great-great-granddaughter of Kalamazoo College leaders James and Lucinda Hinsdale Stone.
President-elect Dr. Jorge Gonzalez, who will take up office after President Wilson-Oyelaran’s retirement on July 1, was also in attendance with his wife Susie (Martin) Gonzalez K’83.
After opening remarks by Lizbeth Mendoza Pineda K’16, the ceremony featured several speakers and presentation of annual awards to exemplary students, faculty, staff, and alumni.
President Wilson-Oyelaran recognized English professor Diane Seuss, who was named as a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize for Poetry for her collection Four Legged Girl. Math professor John Fink provided the keynote address, speaking of the history and use of the change-ringing bells that hang in Stetson Chapel, including a performative reenactment of how the ringers make the bells ring each week.
President Wilson-Oyelaran also presented the annual Outstanding Advisor Award to French professor Jan Holberg, Outstanding First-Year Student Advocate Award Director of Faculty Grants and Institutional Research Anne Dueweke, and Lux Esto Award of Excellence to Professor of History David Barclay.
The ceremony also included vocal performances from Immanuel Greene K’16 and Premium Orange, K’s mixed-gender a cappella group.