Archive for March, 2009

Norman Sigler ’88 Eyes Seattle Mayor’s Post

Norman Sigler

Norman Sigler

A 1988 Washington and Lee graduate has thrown his hat in the mayor ring in Seattle. Norman Sigler is challenging incumbent mayor Greg Nickels, and it won’t be easy, according to the early stories in the Seattle Times, which noted that Norman is one of two challengers who’ve stepped up thus far. Norman has a campaign site and is using his Facebook page to get the word out, too. Norman is an executive search consultant with Norman Sigler & Associates and conducts searches for CEO, CFO, CIO, COO, Partner, VP of Marketing, VP of Sales, and Director level positions. On his campaign site, Norman says that he’s not a professional politician but that he wants “to usher in a new era of action, where our government genuinely listens to citizen concerns and takes a holistic approach to solving problems.” Stay tuned. The primary is in August; the general election is in October.

Justice Thomas’s Lee Chapel Appearance A Blog Hit

clarence_thomas_speech_spotWhen Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas appeared in Lee Chapel on Monday night, the media turnout was primarily local — two Roanoke TV stations, three local newspapers and Associated Press. But the way reports of his speech spread around the Internet is an indication of the increasing power of blogs. Borrowing mostly from passages quoted in the AP story, which was distributed on the national wire, bloggers from the Wall Street Journal to the Alan Colmes’ Liberland and plenty in between cited the Justice’s statements, focusing especially on his criticism of Americans as self-indulgent. Here’s a Google Blog search that provides a snapshot of the coverage. The speech in its entirety is on the W&L YouTube channel and the audio only, including the questions and answers, is on our Sound Bites page.

Generals’ Wrestling Team Posts Third-Best GPA

Mathis Winner John Christopher in action

Mathis Winner John Christopher in action

For the third year in a row, Washington and Lee’s wrestling team has finished among the top teams when it comes to classroom performance. The National Wrestling Coaches Association named the Generals No. 3 in the national among NCAA Division III teams when it comes to grade point average. W&L finished behind No. 1 Williams and No. 2 Rochester Institute of Techology among the 25 teams listed in the NWCA survey. The Generals also handed out three individual team awards: John Christopher won the A.E. Mathis War Memorial Award for excellence in performance, leadership, and sportsmanship; Ben Ersing won the Carlton Peebles Memorial Award for demonstrating the spirit and thrill of athletic competition that is the ideal of the W&L student athlete; and Sam Campbell won the DC Montgomery Award for the outstanding freshman wrestler.

C-SPAN Civics Bus Makes a Visit

civics_bus_250The question is sure to be asked sometime Wednesday: what’s the deal with that bus parked in front of Graham-Lees? The bus in question is the C-SPAN Civics Bus, and it’s making a visit to Washington and Lee on Wednesday between 1 p.m. to 4 p.m. It will indeed be parked on West Washington in front of Graham-Lees, and everyone is invited to stop by and have a look. C-SPAN launched its bus program in 1993 as a way to bring the world of public affairs into schools and communities nationwide. The two C-SPAN Buses have visited students, teachers, and citizens in all 50 states to discuss media, public affairs, and C-SPAN’s programming and free educational resources.The 45-foot long mobile multi-media demonstration centers are equipped with TV production units that can be used as studios during live programs, such as C-SPAN’s Washington Journal. The W&L visit is part of a “100 Days, 100 Schools” tour in which the buses will be visiting 100 colleges and schools between Jan. 21 and April 30. The bus has 3 TV cameras, 2 robotically controlled and 1 handheld unit for off-bus interviews and video shoot. With the state of the art television production and computer equipment on board, studio facilities, design elements and year round maintenance, the bus represents about a $1 million investment.

Virginia Festival of the Books Features W&L Professors

vabook09Two Washington and Lee professors — Domnica Radulescu (Romance Languages) and R.T. Smith (English, Shenandoah editor) — will be featured at the Virginia Festival of the Book in Charlottesville. Domnica will be part of a panel on fiction, Extraordinary Journeys: A Fiction Panel, on Thursday at 2 p.m. at Barnes and Nobel in the Barracks Road Shopping Plaza. She will appear with two other authors whose novels, like Domnica’s Train to Trieste, focus on personal journeys. The other novelists are Rodes Fishburne and Susan Gregg. Also on Thursday, Rod will participate in a poetry reading at the U.Va. Bookstore, which is located at 400 Emmet Street. That session, Shots and Flashes: A Poetry Reading, will include Rod’s poems from Outlaw Style along with poetry of David Huddle.

More Alumni Music

large1In Monday’s blog, we noted the reviews that musician Scott Ainslie of the Class of 1974 has been getting for his most recent album. Now we learn that another alum of the same era, Monty Vickers of the Class of 1975, has come out with his very first album which is, as he says, 55 years in the making. By day, Monty is an optometrist in St. Albans, W.Va., and also writes a column titled “Chairside” for the Review of Optometry. According to his Web site, Monty learned to play a little guitar from his dad and was in a couple of bands along the way, including a folk trio called “Monty, Paul and Mary,” for which he, appropriately, apologizes. But not long ago he went back to writing songs and playing the guitar and has produced his premier album, Cellular. Monty describes the music as “very personal, quiet, and introspective about life, family, suburbia, and love…” You can find Cellular at two different independent music sites, and Digstation. Once you get those sites, just search for Monty Vickers to find Cellular. And a donation is made to the Lance Armstrong Foundation for every copy sold.

W&L Law Alumna Named the New Face of West Virginia

Amy King with W.Va. Gov. Joe Manchin

Amy King with W.Va. Gov. Joe Manchin

Amy R. King, a 2002 graduate of Washington and Lee’s School of Law, has been named the official spokesperson for the state of West Virginia after winning that state’s “Come Home to West Virginia” model contest this week. Sponsored by West Virginia’s Department of Commerce, the contest drew 150 entries to find the best person to take the “Come Home” message nationwide and become the official campaign spokesperson in print ads and Web promotions. King is a corporate and finance lawyer with Spilman Thomas & Battle, PLLC. She was nominated by her two coworkers because of her compelling story about returning to the state in 2006. Her image will be used on marketing materials for the state . King had left the Mountain State in 1992 to attend the University of Richmond. She worked as an auditor for PricewaterhouseCoopers, LLP, in Richmond before attending the law school and then spent time with a Charlotte, N.C., law firm before taking the country roads back to West Virginia. Already adapting to her new role, King told Charleston media on Monday: “In West Virginia, choosing a high quality of life does not mean that you have to compromise the quality of your business or your profession.”