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Steve Sartori

Staying Connected Online

A major goal of both the Syracuse University Alumni Association (SUAA) and the Office of Alumni Relations (OAR) is to make sure that you, our alumni and friends, are informed about all the activities we sponsor for you and everything happening on campus.

So how do we get the word out to you? More than ever before, we are taking advantage of e-mail messages and postings on our web site. Each month, for instance, OAR produces Orangebytes, an e-newsletter that is e-mailed to alumni, providing information about campus happenings and SU events around the world, including the latest news on The Campaign for Syracuse University. SU alumni clubs—now in more than 50 cities in the United States, Europe, and Asia—use OAR’s e-mail blast service and also e-mail notes to alumni in their areas about upcoming events. Many of you may also hear directly from your own schools or colleges, which use OAR’s e-mail blast service to stay in touch.

Are you missing out on this information? The University has e-mail addresses for more than 48 percent of its 230,773 alumni. If you aren’t on that list, visit our web site ( and click on “Online Community.” Here you can register your e-mail address, update your profile and contact information, and find out what is happening with friends and classmates. While at the web site, check out information about our alumni clubs, alumni events, various benefits you can receive as Syracuse University alumni, and the career services support we offer. By the way, we still get the word out through regular mail, too, but you’ll receive information sooner and be able to make plans quicker if we can reach you by e-mail. (And we don’t share your e-mail address with anyone else.)

OAR and SUAA, together with alumni clubs, will host special events around the United States in late spring and early summer to welcome our most recent graduates and help them acclimate to their new homes. We also will help our incoming students make the transition to their new home at SU through our summer “New Student Send-Offs.” Please make a point of taking part in these events: Our new graduates will be glad to benefit from your knowledge and expertise, and our new students will feel part of the great SU family before they arrive on campus. Details about the events will be e-mailed to alumni as well as posted on our web site.

Stay involved and connected with your alma mater by keeping in touch online.


Wally Bobkiewicz G’89 (MAX)
President,  Syracuse University Alumni Association Inc.

Steve Sartori
Ryan Chadick, far right, is honored with SU’s first Orange Spirit Award. Joining him were Neil Gold ’70, former alumni association president; Lauren D’Angelo, a member of the Traditions Commission; and Chancellor Nancy Cantor.

Traditions »

Orange Spirit Award Recognizes Pride, Tradition, and Service

Before a cheering Homecoming crowd in the Carrier Dome in 2005, Ryan Chadick ’08 took his place on the field for a celebration of honored SU community members. A smile to his family, a hug from Chancellor Nancy Cantor, and a citation from the Office of Alumni Relations and Traditions Commission marked a memorable moment for him and a new tradition for the University at the alumni awards ceremony: Chadick was the first recipient of the Orange Spirit Award, which honors students for academic excellence, service, and a commitment to University traditions. “It’s nice to be recognized for the good things you’re doing,” says Chadick, a dual major in public relations and communication and rhetorical studies. “It’s an encouragement to do great things.”

The Orange Spirit Award developed from discussions among members of the Traditions Commission, a University-wide group that is under the Office of Alumni Relations, on how to increase connections between students and alumni. Commission member Lauren D’Angelo ’08 suggested honoring outstanding students with an award given out during the alumni awards ceremony at Homecoming + Reunion. “The event brings students and alumni together and makes people aware of the amazing things they are both doing,” D’Angelo says. The award also adds to a lasting connection with SU. “It’s a great opportunity for us to recognize and honor our future alumni and to let them know we are here for them now and when they graduate,” says Andrea Latchem, assistant vice president of alumni relations.

Brian Spendley receives the Orange Spirit Award. Photo by Steve Sartori

Students are nominated for the award by a member of the University community, and a winner is selected by a committee of faculty and staff. Students need to have a connection to University traditions, pride in their school, and good grades; but the award goes deeper, D’Angelo says. “What sets students further apart is their commitment to making a difference—not only on campus, but also in the surrounding community.” The award winners are chosen based, in part, on a commitment to the Chancellor’s mission of connecting the campus and community.

Chadick was selected for his work as a resident advisor, mentor to students in the Syracuse City School District, University 100 member, and College of Visual and Performing Arts peer advisor. He worked with the Syracuse Inner City Rotary Club to help with Hoops for Peace, a youth program.

In 2006, College of Arts and Sciences student Lauren Abramson ’07 won the award. Last fall, Brian Spendley ’09, a biomedical engineering student, ­received the award, which is highlighted by the presentation of a crystal trophy at the Schine Student Center. “I was really excited,” says Spendley, whose family and friends attended the event. “I’ve been putting in a lot of hard work, so it was great to get some feedback and recognition from the University.” He is a member of Phi Sigma Pi, the national co-ed honors fraternity; a mentor orientation leader; a member of the Sour Sitrus Society pep band; and executive director of the SU-SUNY ESF Chapter of Habitat for Humanity. He volunteers for SU Ambulance and Relay for Life, and is a patient care volunteer at University Hospital.

As a member of the selection committee, D’Angelo enjoys seeing what students like Spendley are involved in. “Orange Spirit can be more than wearing orange and going to games,” she says. “It is helping to foster acceptance, diversity, and community.”

Orange Legacy »

Ballard Family Ties to SU Woven Throughout the University

Photo by Steve Sartori
Bill Ballard in front of the Tolley Building

William F. “Bill” Ballard ’58 didn’t realize how deep his ­family’s SU roots were until he looked into his great-grandmother’s ledger cataloging the work of the Syracuse Pressed Brick Company. Rebecca Ballard’s husband, Robert, started the company after they relocated with their family from England, settling in Syracuse in 1870. “She made a list of all their important customers, and one of them was SU,” Bill Ballard says. “We got digging into it and saw they provided the bricks for the von Ranke Library.”

The construction of the library, built in 1888 and now known as the Tolley Building, marked the start of generations of Ballard family members with ties to the University. Robert and Rebecca left a legacy of family members who attended SU: daughter Elsie ’03 (music); granddaughter Ruth Braley ’20 (arts and sciences); grandson Frederick A. “Fred” Ballard ’23 (civil engineering); great-grandsons Edward J. “Ted” Ballard ’54 (electrical engineering) and Bill Ballard ’58 (civil engineering); and great-great-grandsons Frederick “Fritz” Ballard II G’94 (civil engineering) and William J. Ballard G’96 (management).

Bill Ballard married an alumna with SU roots, Susan Farnsworth Ballard ’60 (music), a music teacher. Her family tree includes several alumni: her father, Jerome Brown Farnsworth ’32 (civil engineering); her mother, Irene Muncy Farnsworth ’30 (speech and dramatic arts); her aunt, Eileen Muncy Wallace ’30 (management); and her brother, Jerome ’55 (mechanical engineering).

Along with the family’s academic ties, the Ballards remain connected to SU through many construction projects. The Fred Ballard Construction Company built the long stairway that leads to Mount Olympus and repaired the University’s roads over the years. Bill Ballard, Fred’s son, formed Ballard Construction in 1967. Bill’s sons, Fritz, William J., and Edward “Ted” Ballard, along with a longtime associate, are now co-owners of the Syracuse-based construction company that focuses on athletic facilities. The company’s projects include the Marshall Street reconstruction project, all of SU’s athletic fields and stadiums, and the Orange Grove. Bill and Susan Ballard purchased a paver in the Orange Grove to commemorate their relatives.

Looking back at his family’s history, Ballard says his great-grandparents placed strong emphasis on education, allowing their daughter to enroll at SU when it was unusual for women to attend college. “They passed this and other values on to their descendants,” Ballard says. “Whatever achievements we can claim wouldn’t have been possible without education. Syracuse University and L.C. Smith College have played a most important role in our lives.”

Photos courtesy of Syracuse University Program Development

Alumni Travel »

Spiritual Journey to South Africa

For information on alumni travel opportunities,
contact Tina Casella
in the Office of
Alumni Relations
at 1-800-SUALUMS


Last summer, 130 Syracuse alumni and their spouses and guests made a highly emotional, deeply ­satisfying 10-day tour of the Republic of South Africa, stopping in Johannesburg, Durban, and Cape Town, and making excursions to Soweto, Zululand, the Hluhluwe Imfolozi Game Park, and Robben Island, where Nelson Mandela and other leaders of the anti-apartheid struggle were imprisoned.  “This was not your average summer vacation trip,” says Larry Martin, associate vice president for program development, who organized and led Coming Back Together: Our Journey to South Africa. “For many African Americans, setting foot on African soil is the realization of a lifelong dream. We found ourselves on a spiritual journey of self-discovery, even as we moved through spectacular landscapes and felt the energies of one of the world’s most exciting new democracies.”

The exaltation experienced by the travelers was enhanced by a lasting connection they made with students and faculty at Kalksteenfontein Primary School, located in a gang-plagued Cape Town neighborhood. With the help of Felix James ’81, a New York attorney who has facilitated dozens of commercial and public-sector projects in South Africa, SU alumni visited the school, presenting principal Jeffrey Arendse with a gift of $7,000 to address such basic infrastructure problems as plumbing and library security, and made plans for future projects. “I was very proud to see my fellow SU alumni acknowledge and embrace the educational needs of historically disadvantaged South African children,” James says. “This outpouring of love and financial support increases their life chances.” The event stood out as a highlight in a journey filled with exceptional experiences for the heart, mind, and senses. “Those kids were so happy to meet us and talk with us—they treated us as if we were rock stars!” Martin says. “When they sang the South African and U.S. national anthems, there wasn’t a dry eye in the house.”


Alumni Happenings »

Photo submittedhomecoming
The Homecoming Court marches down South Crouse Avenue in the Homecoming + Reunion Parade in October.


Photo submitted homecoming
Chancellor Nancy Cantor and athletic director Daryl Gross (left) enjoy halftime festivities during Homecoming + Reunion at the Dome with Jim Ridlon ’57 (third from left), Warren Kimble ’57, and Manny Breland ’57. The alumni were celebrating their 50-year reunion.
Photo submitted
SU alumni and guests view the Gates of Paradise traveling exhibition at the Art Institute of Chicago in July. About 100 people attended the preview event for the exhibition of Lorenzo Ghiberti’s 15th-century masterpiece. The exhibition was curated by Gary Radke ’73, Dean’s Professor of the Humanities and professor of fine arts.


Paula Madison G’74 »

Devoted to Diverse Voices


NBC media executive Paula Madison kicked off the Leaders in Communication Speaker Series at the Newhouse School last fall, sharing knowledge gleaned from 33 years as a newspaper and broadcast journalist and media diversity expert. Madison, a former Newhouse graduate student, spoke with eloquent pride of her Jamaican and Chinese background, expressing gratitude for the support of friends and mentors. Previously general manager of KNBC, Los Angeles, where she was the first African American woman to hold such a position with a network-owned station in a top-five market, Madison was named executive vice president of diversity by parent company NBC Universal in 2007. “In areas reaching from entertainment to news, I have a role in making sure we are driving our diversity goals and objectives,” says Madison, the company’s first senior executive to hold a position solely devoted to diversity. “It’s about fairness and opportunity. Throughout the years, certain industries have not necessarily been as accessible to women and people of color. We have to acknowledge that, in order to be more inclusive and reflective of the society in which we live.”

A native of New York City’s Harlem neighborhood, Madison recognizes the importance of giving voice to those whose perspectives are often overlooked. “There are millions of stories never being told,” says Madison, a Vassar College graduate who began her journalism career as a reporter at the Syracuse Herald-Journal. “Stories about people of color—the history of the disenfranchised—aren’t generally making it into mainstream media.”

Among her many accomplishments, Madison has been the recipient of the Emmy, Golden Mike, and Edward R. Murrow awards for her newscasts and investigative reporting, and was named one of the 75 Most Powerful African Americans in Corporate America by Black Enterprise magazine in 2005. Receiving the President’s Award from the National Association of Black Journalists holds special significance for her. “I know what it takes to be a professional journalist in this country—and what it takes to be a professional journalist as an African American—and it isn’t easy,” Madison says. “But each individual has to determine her own goals and destiny. You are the only one who can define that for yourself.”


David Donovan ’92 »

Rewarding Promotions


David Donovan loves making headlines. And in recent months he’s earned plenty—in such giants as USA Today and The Washington Post as well as virtually every other media outlet in the country. In fact, with clients like filmmaker Ken Burns and the Norwegian Nobel Institute, you could say he’s had a real banner year. “This last year, hands down, has been the most professionally gratifying of my life,” says Donovan, a publicist and senior vice president at Dan Klores Communications (DKC) in New York City. “It’s been incredible.”

The two major highlights: the September PBS broadcast of Burns’s critically acclaimed World War II documentary The War, which culminated a two-year, cross-country publicity blitz; and, three months later, the Nobel Peace Prize Concert in Oslo, Norway, for which he served as international press officer. Pretty heady stuff—and just two exceptional examples from a career that Donovan finds both challenging and exhilarating.

The Newhouse School graduate began his career as a sports reporter and weekend sports anchor for Channel 9 in Syracuse. He moved into public relations in 1998 and joined DKC in 2002. Since then, his clients have included ESPN, Major League Baseball, Merrill Lynch, and Esquire magazine. He also has worked with Muhammad Ali, one of his childhood idols, on the opening of the Muhammad Ali Center in Louisville, Kentucky, and in conjunction with the development of a new snack food.

Donovan worked with Burns on two of the filmmaker’s previous documentaries, but The War, he says, touched him in a way no other project has. He was particularly moved by the reactions of veterans and West Point cadets during special screenings of the film and by the opportunity to develop friendships with some of the veterans who appear in it. “I think that project will be with me forever,” he says. “It was a noble cause. All of us who worked on it felt a sense of obligation to, and respect and honor for, these veterans.” He begins work this spring on Burns’s next project, a documentary on U.S. national parks that is scheduled for completion in 2009.

Donovan has worked with the Norwegian Nobel Institute for the past five years, promoting public awareness of the Peace Prize, particularly among young people. His tasks include drumming up musical guests and celebrities, and coordinating press activities for the annual Nobel Peace Prize concert, which is broadcast worldwide. A highlight of the December 2007 event, he says, was the opportunity to chat with honoree Al Gore. Marquee events aside, Donovan says the most consistently rewarding part of his work is the variety of clients and constant exposure to new experiences. “It’s like being back at SU in a way,” he says. “It broadens you as a person. Every day I learn something new. I don’t know how many people professionally can say that.” 


Ellen Zimiles G’83 »

Financial Forensics


As an assistant U.S. attorney, Ellen Zimiles followed the money trail. It led to cracking high-profile money laundering cases and divesting criminals of their profits. Her reputation preceded her as she moved into the private sector for a position with a “Big Four” accounting firm and then co-founded Daylight Forensic & Advisory, a financial investigative company. Zimiles, who is Daylight’s CEO, brings years of experience as a criminal prosecutor and knowledge of regulatory issues and financial institutions to the international firm. “It takes time to learn all the issues to do an investigation correctly,” says Zimiles, a College of Law graduate. “But once you learn and understand the different pieces, you can make sense of it for everyone.”

Daylight Forensic & Advisory, which opened in June 2006, has offices in New York, Washington, D.C., Miami, and London, and employs forensic accountants, technology specialists, and former prosecutors and law enforcement officials. The company works with corporations and government agencies, monitoring for fraud and regulatory compliance. For example, she says, “We have software developers who create tools to find anomalies in data that may be difficult to uncover.”

Zimiles and co-founder Joseph Spinelli were working at the international auditing firm of KPMG when they decided to start Daylight. Zimiles was the leader of the financial services part of KPMG’s forensic investigations practice, which included money-laundering cases.

By then it was familiar territory for Zimiles, who served for 10 years as a federal prosecutor with the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of New York in New York City. She served in the civil and criminal divisions and was chief of the forfeiture unit. During her time there, Zimiles led the case to confiscate the Kenmore Hotel from its owner, the largest property seizure made under federal law due to drug activity. For her accomplishments, she received the U.S. Department of Justice’s John Marshall Award for Outstanding Service. The government sold the building to a nonprofit group that renovated it and allowed the legitimate tenants to remain. “Many times when you get a criminal case you don’t really know the larger outcome,” she says. “Here was a case where we got to see that impact.”

Zimiles first became interested in litigation at SU, where she won a moot court competition, was an editor of the Syracuse Law Review, assisted Professor David Baldus with death penalty research, and served as a teaching assistant. “I really took advantage of everything the law school had to offer,” says Zimiles, who has two children, Elizabeth and Daniel, with husband, Jonah. “It certainly helped me figure out what I wanted to do.”

Frank Langella ’59 »

Still Center Stage

photo by Hal Drucker langella

So there sat Frank Langella in the stylish confines of his suite at the Regency Hotel in midtown Manhattan, shirt-sleeved and casual, yet conveying the patrician countenance of one of the Molière aristocrats he portrayed as a Syracuse drama major almost half a century ago. Langella, a three-time Tony Award-winning actor who has graced the screen and stage for decades, was among the acting greats who performed for SU’s renowned Boar’s Head Theater Society, under the direction of fabled drama professor Sawyer Falk between 1921 and 1961. “It was one of those lucky, lucky breaks for me, that Sawyer Falk was still an active presence at Syracuse when I attended,” says Langella, a Bayonne, New Jersey, native. “He was a great teacher and mentor, and he instilled in me, at the very tender age of 18, the integrity of this profession. He had a great, great respect for actors, what actors could do, and what they were capable of doing. He brought honor to the profession. He was gone two or three years later at age 63. I think about him all the time.”

Throughout his distinguished career, Langella has portrayed a diverse cast of unforgettable characters: Count Dracula, Sherlock Holmes, Cyrano de Bergerac, and even Richard Nixon. Starring as the disgraced former president in the 2007 Broadway premiere of Frost/Nixon, produced by SU Trustee Arielle Tepper Madover ’94, Langella collected the Tony Award for best actor. He previously won Tonys for supporting roles as the cunning sand lizard in Edward Albee’s Seascape (1975) and as the clever bully Tropatchov in Turgenev’s Fortune’s Fool (2002).

Although Hollywood beckoned, Langella largely avoided film acting during part of his career to seriously pursue stage work. In recent years, he has struck a finer balance, appearing in theater, film, and television. Most notably, he played the imperious CBS board chair William S. Paley in George Clooney’s Good Night, and Good Luck, based on Edward R. Murrow’s See It Now telecasts during the McCarthy era. In 2007, he portrayed a once noteworthy novelist in Starting Out in the Evening. This year, film-goers will get a taste of Langella’s Nixon in director Ron Howard’s film version of Nixon/Frost. “I was around to see the See It Now show in which Murrow took on McCarthy,” Langella says, “and I was around to see Nixon and Frost as well.”

Among his professional accomplishments, Langella doesn’t confess allegiance to any one role. “There is no single thing,” he says. “It’s a certain overall sense of what it means to be an actor and what it means to respect the craft. I respect the craft of acting and I’m proud of myself for doing it.”

Hal Drucker ’53 is a voting member of the Drama Desk and the Outer Critics Circle, and co-author with Sid Lerner ’53, of From the Desk Of: Work Styles of the Rich and Famous.
Directed by Sawyer Falk, Frank Langella (left) appeared in the title role of The Boar’s Head production of Molière’s 1668 farce George Dandin in 1959. Photo courtesy of SU Archives





St. Clair Bourne ’67, an independent documentary filmmaker renowned for his work on African American culture, died on December 15, 2007, at age 64. A graduate of the College of Arts and Sciences, Bourne often combined activism with journalism in creating more than 40 films during a career that spanned four decades. Among the prominent African Americans he profiled were performer and activist Paul Robeson, writer Langston Hughes, and photojournalist and filmmaker Gordon Parks.

Robert M. Diamond, assistant vice chancellor emeritus, died December 14, 2007. He was 77. Diamond was founding director of the Center for Instructional Development at SU (now the Center for Support of Teaching and Learning), which won the 1996 Theodore M. Hesburgh Award for Faculty Development to Enhance Undergraduate Learning. He also was involved in launching Project Advance, the Teaching Assistant Program, and the Student Academic Support Center. He wrote and edited numerous books, including Field Guide to Academic Leadership (2002), and Aligning Faculty Rewards with Institutional Mission (1999). Following his retirement in 1998, he founded the National Academy for Academic Leadership in St. Petersburg, Florida, lectured worldwide, and worked as a consultant. In 1994, the American Association of Higher Education recognized him for 25 years of leadership and innovation in the reform of higher education.

Fred M. Dressler ’63, a pioneering executive in the cable television industry, died December 24, 2007. He was 66. Dressler spent more than three decades as an executive with Time Warner Cable and its predecessor. He led the company’s drive into video-on-demand, personal video recorders, and high-definition programming and founded several cable channels, including E! Entertainment and the In-Demand Network. He had served as chair of the Newhouse School’s advisory board and received a Lifetime Achievement Award from the school in 2005. Contributions in his memory can be made to the Newhouse School, as well as several other organizations.


Horace Landry ’34, G’36,professor emeritus of accounting and an active philanthropist, died November 11, 2007, at age 95. He retired from full-time teaching in 1978 after more than five decades at SU, and continued to teach at the Whitman School and College of Law until 2001. Landry served in the U.S. Navy as a lieutenant junior grade during World War II and was a partner in the PricewaterhouseCoopers accounting firm’s Syracuse office. He was involved in numerous University and local community organizations, serving in leadership positions with the SU Alumni Association of Central New York, the Orange Pack Executive Committee, American Red Cross, American Cancer Society, Salvation Army, Rotary Club of Syracuse, and Syracuse Symphony Orchestra, among others. Among the many honors he received was a George Arents Pioneer Medal for excellence in business in 1975. An endowed scholarship was established in Landry’s name at the Whitman School’s Department of Accounting. Contributions in his memory can be made to The Horace Landry Scholarship Funds at Syracuse University and Le Moyne College.

Jim Ringo ’53, a member of the Pro Football Hall of Fame and two NFC championship teams, died November 19, 2007, at age 75. A star center for the Orange (1950-52), Ringo was drafted in 1953 by the Green Bay Packers, where he played for 11 seasons before joining the Philadelphia Eagles (1964-67). Considered small for an offensive lineman, Ringo was known for his speed, intelligence, and toughness. A seven-time All-NFL selection and 10-time Pro Bowl player, he was named to the NFL’s All-Decade Team of the 1960s. He started 182 consecutive games, a league record at the time. After his playing career, he was a longtime assistant coach with several NFL teams, including the Buffalo Bills, for whom he briefly served as head coach. He was inducted into the hall of fame in 1981.

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