I am writing with welcome news about changes in our faculty and staff! We’re happy to announce that the Rev. Dr. Lindi Ramsden has accepted a part-time position here as Acting Dean of Students and Community Life for the 2014-2015 academic year. Rev. Dr. Ramsden is a distinguished SKSM alumna, and has long professional experience as both a congregational minister and community activist, including 17 years as senior minister at the UU Church of San Jose and 10 years as director of the UU Legislative Ministries of California. We’re all looking forward to welcoming her at the end of this month.
The recent resignation of Rev. Dr. Susan Ritchie made it imperative for us to attend to our courses in Unitarian Universalist history as well as our UU Certificate Program. So we’re also pleased to announce that the Rev. Dr. Megan Richardson will join us this year as Visiting Assistant Professor of Unitarian Universalist History. Rev. Dr. Richardson, a graduate of Harvard Divinity School and Durham University, has studied our living tradition in both the United States and Great Britain, and was mentored by scholars including Conrad Wright, James Luther Adams and Sheridan Gilley. In addition to serving as the acting coordinator for the UU Certificate program, Dr. Richardson will begin her teaching duties during the January intersession.
In addition, several long-time faculty members will assume new advising responsibilities, effective immediately: Rev. Chris Fry, Megan Dowdell, Rev. Dr. Devorah Greenstein, Rev. Chris Long, and Betty-Jeanne Rueters Ward have graciously accepted to take on these roles for the coming year. We’re thankful for their support and look forward to their collaboration. Dr. Ghazala Anwar, Dr. Ibrahim Farajajé, Rev. Michelle Favreault, Rev. Dr. Gabriella Lettini, and Dr. Jo Sanzgiri will continue to also serve as advisors. Rev. Dr. Dorsey Blake and Rev. Kurt Kuhwald will step down from their advising responsibilities; we thank them for their service.
For most of our students, these changes will mean more depth and richness in their theological education. We do realize that, for some students, these shifts in advisement will mean interruptions in already established relationships. We ask for your patience as we continue to refine our advising model.
I’m beginning to get excited about the start of the school year, and about meeting and welcoming our new and returning students. Keep us all in your thoughts and prayers: we’re looking forward to an outstanding year of teaching, learning and living in grace.