The coordinator of PennVIPS, who as a volunteer has spearheaded the organization of others at Penn for volunteer service in the community, has been named Associate Director for Staff, Faculty and Alumni Volunteer Services in Penn's Center for Community Partnerships.
The appointment of Bonnie Ragsdale, who had been staff assistant to Executive Vice President John Fry, was jointly announced by Mr. Fry and Dr. Ira Harkavy, director of the Center for Community Partnerships.
The new post is the first such position in the country, Dr. Harkavy said, and has already brought inquiries from other institutions on establishing similar ones.
Ms. Ragsdale, who studied office management at the Community College of Philadelphia before enrolling in the Wharton School's evening program, took her Associate Degree in Business Administration at Wharton in 1986. She joined the Office of the Executive Vice President in 1989 as an information systems specialist, with responsibility for training and support in computerization of the office. Promoted in 1994 to staff assistant to the EVP, she coordinated EVP units with ISC units and provided financial reports and analyses for those reporting to the EVP.
Soon after joining Penn, Ms. Ragsdale also began serving on numerous committees and projects identified by the then-EVP, Dr. Marna Whittington, for community outreach. With like-minded staff and faculty she began to organize drives to provide food, clothing, toys and school supplies, and built the network known as PennVIPS (for Volunteers in Public Service). The Alumni Relations Office later linked in with an alumni volunteers program that stretches across the nation.
"Bonnie Ragsdale is perfect for this position not only because of what she has done in the past, but because of the impact she will have on the future of volunteerism at Penn," said Dr. Harkavy. "She has done extraordinary service and inspired others to do the same, and she has the insight and tremendous organizational ability to take this program farther as more and more staff, faculty and alumni recognize the part that community service plays in making both Penn and its community the national leaders in the combination of learning and service."
Volume 43 Number 5
September 24, 1996
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