More from the MAC

News and notes from the Martin Alumni Center

Caiden and Savannah Allen meet Santa, with parents Seth '00 and Brooke '02.

Breakfast with Santa

According to Special Events Coordinator Ashley Mayer, over 100 children came to eat breakfast and meet with Santa on Saturday, December 4. These children and their families brought over 500 canned goods to donate to Crosslines. The children also enjoyed face painting provided by the sorority Pi Beta Phi. This is the 10th year that the Drury Alumni Association has sponsored the event.

Generations of Georges: A Drury Legacy

The George family is the definition of a Drury family. The tradition began when Dr. Joseph Henry George served as Drury's fifth president in the early 1900s. Dr. George's daughter-in-law, Mary "Sue" (Schellhardt) George, graduated from Drury in 1947; many of her children and grandchildren followed in her footsteps: Joseph George III '72; Walter George '79, his wife Susan (Robison) George '80, and their daughter Lindsey (George) Vickery '04; and Francis George '80. The George Family recently celebrated their Drury ties with an endowed gift to the O'Reilly Family Event Center. The George Family Plaza will be a gathering place for many generations of alumni to come.

Company Cast Reunion: 1989 & 2010

1989 Company Cast
1989 and 2010 Company Casts
Side by side by side by side: The 1989 Company cast and crew members attending the 2010 production and reunion pre-party were: Doug Caldwell '91, Paige Russell '92, Curt Becker '90, Paul Epps '92, Ruth Ann Wood '90, Jennifer Matlock '93, Carrie Roberts '91, Nicole Bardot '92, Kathy Staeger '93, and Dannie Bentley '91. The current cast and alumni reunited below along with Theatre Department Chair Robert Westenberg and Emeritus Professor Dr. Ruth Monroe.

In 1989, Dr. Ruth Monroe directed the musical Company at Drury. When former cast member Doug Caldwell '91 received a flyer in the mail of upcoming Drury Theatre events, he was pleased to see that Company was on the list of productions. Caldwell says, "It brought back memories because this was a rewarding and challenging experience in our (the student actors') lives. Together we were a real cast of characters — both on and off stage. We were all working so hard on a difficult task, which made us bond even more."

Caldwell knew he had to see the play again at the Drury Theatre. He contacted a fellow cast member, Paige Russell '92, via Facebook. Russell was listening to the soundtrack of Company at that moment, and they both believed it was a sign that a cast reunion should be held to see the current production.

"We were also very pleased to get to see Dr. Ruth Monroe, Joyce Roberts, and John Johnson at this reunion, as they were the faculty members that we worked with on the show in 1989," Caldwell said. "We had a good time watching the current cast's production, repeating our old lines, and singing along to those old Sondheim tunes that we had once performed. I know we were the loudest laughing audience members that night because of our familiarity with the script."

Afterwards, the Drury Theatre Department held a "meet and greet" with the current cast. Caldwell said, "Meeting Robert Westenberg was another terrific experience as well as getting a backstage tour of the set and preparation area where we had spent so many hours as students."

Caldwell, who received his degree from Drury in communications and theatre, is currently an Instructional Technology Specialist at the eMINTS National Center through the University of Missouri. He credits Company, his first play, for the beginning of his study in theatre.

Alumni Convocation Speakers

Drury is proud to report that four alumni were featured speakers in the 2010-11 Convocation Series titled "The Persistence of Memory: Perspectives on the Past."

In August, Kiley Hill spoke on "Planting Connections Outside the Digital Space." Hill works for the Howard Hughes Medical Institute as the clinical study coordinator of a neurogenetics lab at the University of California San Diego.

"Memoirs of an Entrepreneur and Conservationist" was brought to students in September by Johnny Morris, an avid sportsman, dedicated conservationist and the founder and president of Bass Pro Shops.

Paul Stillwell is the author of the book The Golden Thirteen: Recollections of the First Black Naval Officer, which preserves a significant slice of history that would otherwise have been lost. Stillwell spoke at the Founder's Day convocation in September.

The co-founder of the online retailer Amazon.com, Rick Ayre, shared "Predicting the Past" in March, connecting technology and memory.

Betty Cole Dukert to Receive Honorary Degree

The faculty and trustees of Drury University have voted to award Mrs. Betty Cole Dukert with an honorary degree during the spring commencement on Saturday, May 14, 2011.

A pioneering female television producer, Betty Cole Dukert's career included 41 years of producing TV's long-running news program, NBC's "Meet the Press."

Dukert attended Drury in 1946-1947, transferring in as a sophomore from Lindenwood College in St. Louis. During the year she spent at Drury, she was initiated as a member of the Pi Beta Phi sorority. She later transferred to the University of Missouri- Columbia and earned her degree in journalism in 1949.

Dukert served on the Academic Committee of Drury's Board of Trustees for 24 years and is now a Trustee Emeritus in the Washington, D.C. area.

Save the Date

Presidential Appreciation Reception
Celebrate the year with students, faculty, staff, alumni and friends.
May 14, 2011
Trustee Science Center

Alumni Reunion 2011:
Memories of Yesterday, Visions of Tomorrow
September 30 - October 1
50th Class Reception with the President 5K/10K run to benefit Care to Learn Golden Circle and Distinguished Alumni Awards Luncheon

Class Dinners
Golden Circle - Classes of 1936, 1941, 1946, 1951, 1956, 1961
50th - Class of 1961
25th - Class of 1986
10th - Class of 2001

Drury University Alumni Council

Alumni Making the Drury Difference

By Kim Crist '97

Since 1873, Drury graduates have made a difference. There are alumni like Bob Barker '47, retired host of "The Price Is Right," and Carol Loomis '51, editor-at-large for Fortune magazine, who have had distinguished careers and have given of themselves for the good of others. They give students and alumni alike a glimpse of the opportunity a Drury education provides. But you don't have to be in the limelight to lead an exemplary life.

Each year, the Drury Alumni Council recognizes the people who have made a difference either through distinguished careers or by giving selflessly to their community. We also want to remember the faculty who continue to provide the education that encourages students to find their passion and pursue their dreams. You probably don't have to think long to find someone who deserves this recognition.

So here's how you can help. If there are alumni in your communities or in your lives who fall into one of the following award categories, we want to know:

  • Distinguished Career Achievement
  • Distinguished Community Service
  • Distinguished Young Alumni
  • Distinguished Faculty

The nomination process is simple. You will find detailed award descriptions and a nomination form online at alumni.drury.edu. Tell us about your nominee and be as specific as possible. We will accept nominations through June 1, 2011. Awards will be presented during Alumni Reunion this fall.

Why wait? Now is the time to provide a wonderful gift to someone who continues to make the Drury difference. Questions? Contact Meagan Mitchell '04, mhmitchell@drury.edu.