Kimberly Bowen-Taking on her role on campus

Maddie Lasser

Contributor

When first entering the home of José and Kimberly Bowen at Goucher College, guests immediately encounter a massive portrait by artist Grace Hartigan. The canvas, a painting of a man from the chest up, covers an entire wall in the Bowen’s living room. The artwork is striking – the man in the painting wears a vermillion shade of red that overwhelms the piece. It is difficult to not stare back at the immense canvas.
Kimberly Bowen says the painting by Hartigan is one of her favorites in Goucher’s collection. “Some people said, ‘I don’t know about that,’” says Kimberly. “‘You come in the door and its just staring at you’ and I like that kind of sense of drama and mystery.” The 6th generation Texas native has a lifelong interest in the arts. While living in Dallas, Kimberly was involved in the arts community while José was serving as Dean to the School of Arts at Southern Methodist University.
For 24 years, Kimberly worked in the industrial and aerospace industry, selling and dealing with aerospace and industrial adhesives and sealants for manufacturing. Originally, after graduating from North Lake College outside of Dallas, TX, Kimberly planned on staying at this job for one summer. Associating herself more closely with fashion and the arts, Kimberly assumed she would work in a field related to these passions.
In the late 1980s, Kimberly quickly recognized the challenges of a woman working in a male dominated field. But as a sister to two younger brothers, she was excited rather than deterred by this opportunity. “I am always up for a challenge,” says Kimberly. “I was always wanting to push myself and push the boundaries of the societal norms of what people perceived of [women in business].”
Kimberly discovered how manufacturing, in its own right, is a bountiful art form. She found a merger between the arts and her business background. “In an industrial way, [manufacturing] is an art form for me,” notes Kimberly. “[As people,] we see something and we think, ‘Wow, that’s nice,’ but we are just looking at one element of it– we’re looking at the finished product. I was much more interested in knowing the process of how it started out and how it evolved into, let’s say, a couch or, in my case, a jet.” At Goucher, she will be able to advantageously use her ability to examine a whole as more than a sum of its parts.
Kimberly is passionate about getting involved with student groups, like the animal rights activism organization on campus. She expresses an interest in increasing the accessibility of art on the campus, hopefully creating the more supportive artistic community some students are looking for. Still, she recognizes a need for balance between her personal activism and accomplishing tasks for the college. Kimberly has recognized the importance of having a visible senior staff, including herself and José in this group. “I think immersing ourselves in the culture of the college is really beneficial to everyone,” she says. “Including us.”
Since Goucher is a small campus, the Bowens’ presence is recognized and apparent. When accepting the job at Goucher College, Kimberly notes that she and José made the conscious decision to live on Goucher’s campus, as opposed to in a surrounding area. “I think it’s important to everything that Goucher stands for,” she says, “for there to be a presence here on campus. I don’t think this is the kind of job that you could do and then at 5 o’clock you get in your car and you drive home.”
While Kimberly is not an employee of Goucher, she wants to be involved on campus. She has visited with various departments around campus. While José conducted forum discussions with faculty and staff, Kimberly visited with Facilities Management Services, Housekeeping, Public Safety, the Health and Counseling Center – all offices at Goucher College that keep the school functioning. She wanted to let these offices know she is here and if they need anything, they can look to her for support.
Senior Goucher student Joey Fink has taken advantage of this new presence at Goucher with a sense of curiosity to learn how Kimberly can facilitate the college’s growth. Fink first met Kimberly Bowen as the student representative for the Presidential Search Committee in 2013, but he got to know Bowen more informally at a Goucher College Hillel event. “She kind of talked about what she was up to and doing,” says Fink. Kimberly Bowen’s email address is in the student email database, making her more accessible than some students perceive; however, many students haven’t yet taken the initiative. “Anyone could meet with her and talk to her and get to know her more,” say Fink.
Since students are not yet clear of Kimberly Bowen’s role, it is possible they do not know which matters are appropriate to bring to her attention. “This is, kind of, the first time we have someone to fill this role,” says Fink, “because we’ve never really had an entirely involved spouse of a college president.” After meeting with her, Fink became more aware of what she has been accomplishing since her arrival and was able to learn more about her background.
Fink expressed excitement for the future opportunities Kimberly Bowen may incite at Goucher. Fink noted that she has a unique opportunity to create a role for herself, to write her own job description. Based on her success in business, Fink expresses interest in Kimberly becoming more involved with business students at Goucher, to share her successes and experiences working for a large organization.
Kimberly is enthusiastic about future growth at the college and the evolution of her role within the Goucher community, expressing her interests in creating a greater tie to the history of the school to continue its already abundant legacy. As for accomplishing these future goals for the college, whether they are intended for students, faculty, or staff, she says, “I really do believe it is going to take everyone, coming together, to make this place even better than it already is.”

Staff responsibilities, jobs shift in wake of changes

Rachel Brustein
Staff Writer

With a new academic year upon us, the Goucher community has both said farewell to and welcomed in several employees. Those leaving include Kia Kuresman, Mary Wahl, Kasey Quinn, Wendy Belzer Litzke, and Norman Zwagil.
Kuresman, who was the director of new student programs, left to work at National Labor College. She will be greatly missed by many students, especially those on Goucher’s orientation committee.
“I was sad that Kia was leaving,” said Lenna Blaser ‘14 Chair of Orientation Committee. “But after hearing about her new job I realized what a great opportunity it was for her and her career.”
No one has been hired to fill the position; instead, her responsibilities have been split up between various members of the Office of Student Engagement (OSE).
Kuresman’s departure was “a big change…but Christine [Kreiger, of OSE] performed better than we could’ve imagined” said Maddie Lasser  ’16, a member of Orientation Committee.
Two members of OSE have been promoted: Emily Perl and Stacy Cooper Patterson. Perl, formerly the associate dean for student engagement, has been promoted to assistant vice president for student life. As part of her new position, Perl works closely with Vice President of the College and Dean of Students Bryan Coker. Together, the two oversee the Division of Student Life, which has seven offices. One of these offices, Multicultural Student Services, is one that Perl is hoping to expand through diversity education, and inclusion.
Perl is still “very committed [to Connections]…and makes sure we [the Peer Facilitators] have what we need for Connections,” said Emily Hewlings ’16, a Connections Peer Facilitator. Perl continues to run the Connections course for first-year students, and is responsible for hiring and training all of the Peer Facilitators.
Stacy Cooper Patterson has been promoted from associate director of OSE for leadership development to director of OSE. In this position, Patterson oversees the planning of late night and weekend events, orientation and new student programs, and works with Lindsay Johnson, associate director of community service. Billy Daly, president of the class of 2016, mentioned that Patterson wants to implement a weekly class presidents’ meeting.
OSE is “a group force, so we come into contact with everyone,” even though there has been a shift in positions and responsibilities among the staff, according to Lasser, who is also a member of Programming Board.
Outside of OSE, Mary Wahl and Kasey Quinn, both former community living coordinators, left to pursue graduate degrees. Timothy Chin is also no longer at Goucher. To replace them, the Office of Community Living has hired two new coordinators, Tony Leva and Brandon Ebenhoeh.  Another new employee, Lindy Bobbitt, is serving as the assistant director of Community Living now that Candance Doane has been promoted to director of Community Living.
Wendy Belzer Litzke, former special assistant to President Sandy Ungar and vice president for government and community relations, left Goucher to become the executive director of the Orphan Society of America, which is located in the Philadelphia area. Litzke worked at Goucher since 2004. Goucher alumnus William O. Lederer ‘12 replaces her as special assistant to the president.
Norman Zwagil, who was the general manager of Bon Appetit at Goucher, left for the same position at Johns Hopkins. Last spring, President Ungar sent an email announcing Zwagil’s departure, which included a kind letter from Zwagil to the Goucher community. As a result, Tom Brown, who had been the operations director of Bon Appetit at Goucher, has been promoted to the new general manager.
Two other employees join the Goucher Family. Andrew Wu is the new assistant dean of students, a position that was vacant last year. The Athletic Department welcomes Ceri Miller as the new head coach of women’s lacrosse.  While there are many changes in administration, these shifts will allow the strong staff and student leadership at Goucher to continue and grow at the college.

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