Association of 1775 back in action
For 25 years, Jim Dorsey (’60) served in the U.S. Army, completing two tours in Vietnam and retiring as a lieutenant colonel. After his military career, he worked at Jamestown Settlement and lived in Williamsburg. Dorsey was a regular at campus events and football games, driving a truck covered in William and Mary decals.
A few years before his death in 2018, Dorsey approached the Alumni Association with plans to relaunch the Association of 1775 (Ao75), William and Mary’s military, veterans and government alumni group, which had been inactive for years. Around the same time, Charles Bowery ‘92 had a similar idea, and behind the scenes, they worked to reinvigorate the organization.
Ao75 is now back in action and moving forward. Networks are strengthening and infrastructure is growing. Part of a larger, campus-wide focus on William and Mary’s veterans services, Bowery, staff across campus and others are working hard to improve the organization, sometimes on nights and weekends. But Dorsey, who passed away in January 2018, didn’t see the results of their success. He saw only preparation, a glimpse of the vision: to give those who’ve served and sacrificed so much the community they deserve.
That vision, though, was the first step toward the eventual reality. By believing, Dorsey helped others see. So Bowery stood there, on the dry, cloudy January day, and waited to tell the story of Jim Dorsey, one story of thousands in a nearly 250-year university legacy; a veteran, a William and Mary graduate, a man who made his nation — and his alma mater — proud.
For the Bold celebration in South Hampton Roads
William and Mary celebrated its For the Bold campaign in South Hampton Roads last week. The region is home to more than 16,000 alumni, parents, family and friends of the university.
A crowd of almost 200 gathered at the Chrysler Museum of Art to celebrate the transformational impact the campaign is having on the lives of students, faculty and alumni. The museum and the Wells Fargo Center were illuminated in green and gold for the special evening.
“This evening we celebrate bold moments. These are the moments when we — level headed and fearless — decided to go for the long pass, to experiment, to scale heights and to lift others as we climb. One way we lift others every day is through scholarships,” said President Katherine A. Rowe. “Support for scholarships enables William and Mary to recruit the best and brightest minds from around the globe. As we enter the final year of the campaign, we need your help to close it triumphantly.”
Since the start of the campaign, more than $864 million has been raised, including $61 million in the South Hampton Roads area.
Study highlights vulnerability of rural coast to sea level rise
Type “sea level rise” in an internet search engine and almost all the resulting images will show flooded cities, with ample guidance on civic options for protecting urban infrastructure, from constructing seawalls to elevating roadways.
But a new review article in Nature Climate Change highlights the growing recognition that sea-level rise will mostly impact rural land — much of it privately owned — where existing knowledge is insufficient to best inform public and private decisions regarding the encroachment of wetlands into farmland and forests.
The paper — based on research funded by the National Science Foundation — is the first effort to synthesize the growing number of studies of land conversion driven by sea-level rise. One of the clearest signs of this conversion are “ghost forests”—stands of dead trees with new marshlands lapping at their bleached trunks.
Lead author Matt Kirwan, an associate professor at William and Mary’s Virginia Institute of Marine Science, says “Ghost forests are one of the most prominent indicators of climate change. Recent research shows that submergence of rural land — marked by ghost forests and abandoned farm fields — is widespread, ecologically and economically important, and globally relevant to the survival of coastal wetlands.
Strong bonds: Alumni create a sports and entertainment empire
Two William and Mary graduates created a mecca for serious athletes, fitness enthusiasts and entertainment seekers — young, old and in between called the St. James.
Craig Dixon (’97) and Kendrick Ashton (’98) went on to successful careers in law and investment banking before starting this venture. They named the business, which opened in September in Springfield, after the Court of St. James’s, the center of global affairs under the British empire for centuries.
“We wanted our brand to represent our ambition for the business, which was to be the center of the universe for each market that we serve,” Ashton said. “We very much want to be as integral to people’s lives as home and school or work are.”
The name also recognizes the pair’s link to William and Mary, he says.
“Craig and I met at a place that was discussed and ultimately approved and chartered in the Court of St. James’s. It’s a very important and formative place for us. We met our wives there. We started our friendship there and we grew as young people in ways that we probably could not have imagined.”
Items used are from William and Mary news releases.
Martin can be reached at (757)-243-3685, by email at email@example.com or on Twitter at @SaraRoseMartin.