|The OYT..from left, Dave Ford, Steve Law, Greg Scott, me, Rudi Nollert.|
Kenny Brown seated.
Defunct now, but once there was a spot, if not Camelot, still a gathering of wits and some wisdom, a refuge from ridiculous demands from higher up...the chairs of the Liberal Arts College at UCO.
That came to mind and discussion this morning as Dave Ford, the chair of the Sociology department, and I, former chair of Journalism and Mass Communication, had breakfast and traded memories.
The occasion? Dave is retiring, and Friday is his last day. He and I came to UCO the same year, 1990, and we became friends, each serving many years as departmental chairs.
We credit former Dean Tim Baughman with creating a strong chair's council, and after he left, we began gathering informally on the porch of then Political Science Chair Greg Scott, taking notes on yellow legal pads. Thus was formed the noble-named and august body of the Order of the Yellow Tablet. While many faculty disapproved of Tim, we found him an inclusive leader who brought needed structure to the college, real influence and power to a cohesive group of chairs, and other benefits we still see.
We also gathered socially at our house one evening about 10 (hence this photo) years ago, when History Chair Kenny Brown was stepping down, to honor him. It include memories, jokes, Humanities chair Steve Law's homemade mead, and more.
Dave is the last of that group to serve as chair. Three are now retired. Modern Languages Chair Rudi Nollert is now an assistant dean, Steve Law is still professing medieval life, making mead, chain mail and more, and I am still here as a professor of journalism. Greg and his wife Jill have retired to Santa Fe, and Kenny and his wife Diane are retired here.
Here's a toast to the members, my friends, of the Order of the Yellow Tablet. It kept us sane, gave us an outlet for frustrations, and helped bond good friends and colleagues. Salud!