Rodin To Step Down
Next Year

On the rainy afternoon of June 20, a few days after we had completed work on this issue of the Gazette, a bombshell arrived in the form of an e-mail. It came from Dr. Judith Rodin CW’66, and was addressed to the University community.

“This morning I informed the Board of Trustees, together in Philadelphia for their June meeting, of my intention to step down from the presidency of Penn at the end of June 2004,” the e-mail began. By then she will have served as president for 10 years, she noted, and she described her service to the University as “an extraordinary privilege and an exhilarating experience.”

By just about any measure, it has been a remarkably successful tenure, a subject we will address more in future issues.

“Through her vision, creativity, and boundless energy,” said James Riepe W’65 WG’67, chairman of Penn’s trustees, “Judy has provided extraordinary leadership to Penn over these past nine years—strengthening undergraduate, graduate, and professional education; revitalizing the campus and community; increasing fundraising; and dramatically enhancing the University’s national reputation. Penn today is a stronger and more vibrant institution than at any time in our history.”

“The decision to step down has been an extremely difficult one for me to make,” Rodin acknowledged, “but I believe it is the right time for Penn. We have successfully fulfilled our first bold strategic plan, “Agenda for Excellence,” and with the next plan conceived and ready to launch, it is a perfect time for new leadership. I love this institution and will always remain a part of it.”

Tangible steps have already been taken to make sure she does indeed remain a part of Penn. Not only have the trustees asked her to assume a “newly created part-time position as Chancellor to remain actively engaged in fundraising,” but she will remain on the faculty as well. She is currently professor of psychology and professor of medicine and psychiatry.

“I look back with great pride at all that our faculty, staff, students, alumni, and community partners have together enabled Penn to accomplish these past nine years,” she said, “and I know that the years ahead will be full of successes as well.”

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COMMENCEMENT All, All in the Family “I hear the bagpipes, Kate!” called out a gray-bearded man standing near Oldenberg’s “Split Button.” Continued...

RESEARCH Something in the Armpits A dab of extract of male underarm perspiration is applied to the upper lip of an ovulating woman. 1. Does she become a) nauseated, b) more tense, c) more relaxed, or d) apoplectic? Continued...

APPOINTMENTS Delli Carpini Chosen to Lead Annenberg School The University has selected a new Walter H. Annenberg Dean of the Annenberg School for Communication: Dr. Michael Delli Carpini C’75 G’75 … Continued...

ARCHAEOLOGY AND WAR Operation Iraqi Heritage When the University Museum began its archaeological relationship with what is now called Iraq, the region was part of the Ottoman Empire. Continued...

RESEARCH Bittersweet Vindication for Atkins Diet After decades of ridicule by the American medical establishment, it’s fittingly ironic that Dr. Robert Atkins had his epitaph published in the New England Journal of Medicine. Continued...

SYMPOSIUM Parsing the Influence
of Zellig Harris
“As you honor Zellig Harris today, and celebrate the publication of this new collection of writings, pause a moment to think about what would be missing if Harris had never explored the world of linguistics,” said Provost Robert Barchi at the outset of a January symposium dedicated to the legacy of the late Dr. Zellig Harris G’32 Gr’34. Continued...


A Moveable Feast for the Eyes

On July 10 an exhibition of rare books and manuscripts titled Literae Humaniores in the University of Pennsylvania Library (including a 15th-century German translation of Boccaccio’s De claris mulieribus, above, and an 18th-century copy of Cicero’s Cato Major, printed and sold by Benjamin Franklin, below) will open at the Katholieke Universiteit Leuven in Belgium and run through October 15. The opening celebration will include remarks by the Hon. Stephen Brauer, the United States Ambassador to Belgium, as well as administrators from Penn’s library system and from Leuven, the oldest university in the Low Countries. It marks the 75th anniversary of the reopening of the Central Library, which had been destroyed in World War I and was rebuilt with contributions from American donors, including Penn.

In 1999 the KU Leuven Library mounted a major exhibition of books and manuscripts at Penn, titled Books in Leuven, Leuven in Books.

“In the turmoil of the present, it seems not only fitting but necessary to remind ourselves of the deeper connections between Old World and New and to underscore the common patrimony of both,” says Dr. Michael Ryan, director of the Annenberg Rare Book and Manuscript Library. The Penn Library, he adds, is “proud to be able to share with our European friends and colleagues a selection of books and manuscripts from an institution in which the traditions of Humanism have remained alive and well.”

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2003 The Pennsylvania Gazette Last modified 04/28/03


Wrongful Death
Lawsuit Settled

The family of the late Michael Tobin C’94 has settled its wrongful-death lawsuit against the University, Phi Gamma Delta fraternity, and the real-estate management firm of Trammell Crow for an undisclosed amount of money. Tobin died from a fall behind the Penn-owned FIJI fraternity house at 3619 Locust Walk in March, 1999, after an alumni dinner at which he had been drinking heavily. His family had charged that it was the University’s failure to maintain the stairs behind the fraternity house that had caused Tobin’s death. Since then the fraternity has been disbanded and the University has revamped its alcohol policy.


Vice Provost for Libraries
Resigns After Investigation

Dr. Paul Mosher, vice provost and director of libraries, resigned from the University in April following an eight-month investigation by the Philadelphia Police Department’s special victims unit. He had allegedly downloaded more than 2,000 images of child pornography from Internet sources onto his laptop computer and paid for them with a credit card. A preliminary hearing in April was postponed until June 26, after the Gazette went to press.

The investigation began last August, when Mosher reportedly took his broken laptop to a repair shop, where employees found the images in his files. They reported the finding to University Police, who then turned the information over to Philadelphia Police, as required by law.

“The Philadelphia Police conducted a careful investigation over an extended period and the University was not involved in the investigation,” said Lori Doyle, vice president for University communications. The special victims unit seized Mosher’s computer from his office in Van Pelt Library on April 11, and Penn quickly placed him on administrative leave. By April 17, he had resigned from his post, and on April 21, he turned himself in to Philadelphia Police. Bail was set at $15,000.