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The Joseph S. Calvaruso Keynote Address Endowment

Joseph S. Calvaruso, '78, and his wife, Donna, established an endowment fund in 2005 to support the annual Elkin R. Isaac Symposium keynote address. The keynote address now bears Calvaruso's name.

An Albion native, he currently serves as executive director of the Gerald R. Ford Presidential Foundation in Grand Rapids. Before joining the foundation, he was senior vice president and director of risk management for Mercantile Bank in Grand Rapids.

Active in the Republican Party on the state and national levels, Calvaruso is a member of the Gerald R. Ford Institute for Public Policy and Service Visiting Committee at the College.

In keeping with Calvaruso's personal goal to "try different things in life," the keynote endowment ensures the symposium will continue to provide an exceptional variety of presenters from the arts, sciences, social sciences, and humanities.

The Elkin R. Isaac Endowment

Elkin "Ike" Isaac, '48, with 2010 Symposium presenter Rachel Leads, '10. "Meeting Ike Isaac was such a rewarding experience. His continuing dedication to the College and his regard for Albion students is truly inspiring," Leads said. "I feel honored that I can take part in the Elkin Isaac Student Research Symposium, which honors such a great man." (Photo:Vanessa McCaffrey)

The Elkin R. Isaac Endowed Lectureship was created in 1991 by Albion College alumni in honor of their former teacher, coach and mentor, Elkin R. "Ike" Isaac, '48. Isaac taught at Albion from 1952 to 1975 and coached basketball, track and cross country. He led his teams to one Michigan Intercollegiate Athletic Association basketball title, six consecutive league championships in track, and three cross country championships. He also served as the College's athletic director and created Albion's "Earn, Learn and Play" program and the "Albion Adventure Program." In 1975, Isaac became athletic director at the University of the Pacific and retired from there in 1984.

Elkin Isaac passed away Aug. 13, 2013.

Reflecting Isaac's lifelong interests in higher education and research, proceeds from the endowment are used to bring a noted scholar to campus each year to offer the Isaac Lecture and to visit with classes. In 1997, the Isaac Lectureship was expanded and is now associated with Albion College's annual Student Research Symposium, featuring presentations by students recommended by their faculty sponsors for outstanding independent study and research. The symposium now bears Isaac's name.

The Isaac Endowment Committee:

  • Cedric W. Dempsey, ´54
  • T. John Leppi, ´59 (deceased)
  • Thomas G. Schwaderer, ´56
  • Leonard F. "Fritz" Shurmur, ´54 (deceased)
  • John R. Taylor, ´55

Alexander McCall Smith

Alexander McCall Smith 2013 Joseph S. Calvaruso Keynote Address

“The Very Small Things of Life”

Thursday, April 18, 2013
7:00 p.m., Goodrich Chapel

Alexander McCall Smith has written and contributed to more than 100 books ranging from specialist academic titles to children’s literature. He is best known for his No. 1 Ladies’ Detective Agency series, which to date has been translated into 45 languages and sold over 20 million copies worldwide. The series, which was adapted for BBC Radio and HBO television, has inspired a cookbook and led McCall Smith to share the young Precious Ramotswe’s story in a series of children’s books.

While he has written many popular stand-alone novels and short stories, McCall Smith is a master of series fiction, including The Sunday Philosophy Club, Portuguese Irregular Verbs, and three children’s series. Fascinated with the challenge of writing to deadline, McCall Smith began two other series with novels written in installments. 44 Scotland Street was a cultural obsession when published in weekday installments in the Scotsman newspaper. Corduroy Mansions was likewise originally published and podcasted serially by the United Kingdom’s Daily Telegraph. McCall Smith is currently working on a book about W. H. Auden, scheduled for publication by Princeton University Press in 2014.

McCall Smith was born in what is now Zimbabwe and was educated there and in Scotland. He first returned to Africa to help establish a new law school at the University of Botswana. Now a professor emeritus of medical law at the University of Edinburgh, he also served as vice chairman of the Human Genetics Commission of the United Kingdom, chairman of the British Medical Journal Ethics Committee, and as a member of the International Bioethics Commission of UNESCO.

McCall Smith is the recipient of numerous awards, including the Crime Writers’ Association’s Dagger in the Library Award, the United Kingdom’s Author of the Year Award (2004), the Saga Award for Wit, and Sweden’s Martin Beck Award. In 2007 he was made a Commander of the British Empire for his services to literature. He holds honorary doctorates from 12 universities, and the Presidential Order of Merit given by the president of Botswana. He lives in Edinburgh.

James E. Misner, ’66

James E. Misner, '66 2000 Elkin R. Isaac Lecture

“From Fat to Fit: Reflections on Exercise, Nutrition, and Weight Control”

Monday, April 17, 2000; 7:30 p.m.
Bobbitt Visual Arts Auditorium

Kinesiologist James E. Misner, '66, has been an educator and researcher in the areas of physical fitness and exercise for nearly 30 years. He is currently professor of kinesiology at the University of Illinois in Champaign. In addition to directing numerous research projects for the University of Illinois, Misner, has conducted research for the American Heart Association, the Illinois Association for Health, Physical Education and Recreaction, and the Champaign-Urbana Mass Transit District. Misner has worked as a consultant for some two dozen different government and business organizations, including the Illinois Association of Boards of Police and Fire Commissioners, the Civil Service Commissions of Champaign, Illinois and New York City, the civil service system for Illinois universities, and the University of Illinois Medical School. Misner has also served as an expert witness in four court cases.

Currently, Misner serves as a consulting editor of the Journal of the National Intramural-Recreational Sports Association and as editor of the Illinois Journal of Health, Physical Education, and Recreation. He has contributed more than 50 articles to these and many other professional journals in the U.S., Europe, and Australia. Misner has also contributed to dozens of research abstracts, reports, and manuals, co-authored a book and instructional software, and has given nearly 75 presentations to professional conferences. Since 1978, he has been recognized 14 times on the Chancellor's List of teachers ranked as excellent by their students.

Misner joined the faculty at the University of Illinois shortly after receiving his doctorate there in 1971. Misner holds a master's degree from the University of Arizona in Tucson. He is married to Marilyn Spitler Misner, '68, and they have two daughters, Kristin Misner, '96, and Anne.

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