Forty three members of the Lehigh employee community retired this year. Those in attendance are pictured below. We wish all of them the best in the next chapter of their lives.
Assistant Dean of Students, Disability Services
During her years in the Dean of Students’ Academic Support Services stem, Cheryl served on numerous committees, including the Council for Equity and Community. She is particularly proud of the impact she made on Lehigh through developing the university’s disability support services policies, philosophy and program over the past twenty-four years. Since retiring, Cheryl has been busy traveling, working on house renovations, and illustrating a children’s book. As she puts it, “Enjoying life.”
Administrative Clerk, Civil and Environmental Engineering
51 Years of Service
Dr. Stephen Buell is co-director of the Integrated Business and Engineering Honors Program (IBE). He was awarded a B.S., M.A., and Ph.D. from Lehigh University and is a specialist in corporation finance. Dr. Buell has published papers in journals including Oxford Economic Papers, Journal of Financial Research, Journal of Fixed Income, Journal of Financial and Strategic Decisions, and Research in Finance. As co-director of IBE, Professor Buell oversees the recruiting, mentoring and placement of 200 of some of the brightest undergraduates at Lehigh. He is the recipient of three major university-wide awards for outstanding teaching. Professor Buell has degrees in industrial engineering, economics, and business and industrial economics, all from Lehigh.
Manager of Classroom Technology Support, LTS
Kathy spent her entire career at Lehigh assisting with campus technology in the stem that eventually became known as Library and Technology Services. Upon retirement, she relocated to Chincoteague Island, Virginia. In her own words, “I am painting rocks and selling them at one of the little shops down here, and also giving rock painting classes! True story!”
Coordinator, Finance and Administration
During her years in Finance and Administration, Barbara also served as a member of the Student Employment and Enrichment Committee (SEEC). When asked how she would like to be remembered at Lehigh, she noted, “I hope I influenced others by being kind and treating colleagues fairly. It was hard to leave Lehigh.” Barbara is now spending quality time babysitting her two granddaughters.
Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering
Dr. Mohamed El-Aasser, received a Ph.D. from McGill University, Canada. He came to Lehigh University as a postdoctoral fellow in 1972, joined the faculty as professor of chemical engineering in 1974. At Lehigh, he led the creation of several interdisciplinary research centers and creative education programs, such as the Center for Polymer Science and Engineering, and bachelor’s degree programs in integrated business and engineering, computer science and business, and bioengineering. During his 45 years of active research, he supervised 99 Ph.D. students, 53 M.S. degrees, and 31 postdoctoral fellows. He authored more than 400 published articles, edited five books and holds nine U.S. patents. Dr. El-Aasser served in various senior administrative roles at Lehigh University: dean of the P.C. Rossin College of Engineering and Applied Science, provost/vice president for academic affairs, and vice president/associate provost for international affairs. He has received numerous awards, including the American Chemical Society (ACS) 2002 Tess Award in Coatings, 2007 Fellow of the ACS Division of Polymeric Materials Science and Engineering, Lehigh University’s 1988 Libsch Research Award, and the 1999 Hillman Extraordinary Service Award. Dr. El-Aasser also won the 1985 NASA Inventor of the Year Award (shared) for the first commercial product manufactured in space—microscopic plastic beads—on the Space Shuttle Challenger (listed as number eight on Lehigh’s 150 milestones).
Administrative Coordinator, Dean of Students Office
Nancy started her career at Lehigh as a data input clerk for the Centennial School. Over the years she served on ERAC and the Dean of Students’ Spirit Committee. She also volunteered for the annual Move-Out sale. Nancy was honored to help students by managing logistics for the Opportunity Fund. As she stated, “Many students who come to Lehigh do not need financial help, but for those with financial need, the Student Opportunity Fund is an enormous benefit. It enables hundreds of students each year to pursue challenges they would not be able to afford on their own.” In retirement, she is enjoying time at home and spending more time with her eight grandchildren.
Graduate Program Coordinator, Industrial and Systems Engineering
While she spent most of her career at Lehigh in ISE, Rita also worked in the History department as well as Facilities. An active participant in campus life, she served on the Rewards and Recognition Committee, volunteered during MOOV In, and was a guest reader at the child care center for thirteen years. Rita says she really enjoyed working with graduate students and making a difference. To help international students in particular, Rita created handouts that explained all of the complex policies and procedures involved with their studies. In retirement, Rita is busy volunteering at the Moravian Archives and other non-profits, going to shows, reading and taking classes.
Sociology and Anthropology
Dr. John Gatewood earned his Ph.D. in anthropology from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. His specialties include culture and cognition, human ecology, tourism, and research methods. He has done ethnographic fieldwork in Alaska, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, and the Turks and Caicos Islands and commercial research for a variety of companies and advertising agencies.
Emelia (Amy) Grim
Coordinator for the Dean of Students and Director of Student Support and Case Management Services
Amy had roles in Residential Services and Fraternity and Sorority Affairs prior to the position from which she retired this year. Amy contributed her years of experience to developing the SOAR program and its website with three other staff members. SOAR is an onboarding program for administrative personnel to help them succeed at Lehigh. Since retiring, Amy is spending more time with family and friends. She’s also enjoying reading and quilting.
Cook/Aide, Child Care Center
11 Years of Service
Dr. Ned D. Heindel is the H. S. Bunn Chair Professor of Chemistry at Lehigh University and a consultant on drug development for Azevan Pharmaceuticals. He has engaged in contract R&D for Astra-Zeneca, Air Products, BMS, Merck, J&J, and DuPont as well as for eight venture capital start-up firms. Dr. Heindel is a graduate of Lebanon Valley College (B.S.-1959), the University of Delaware (Ph.D.-1963), and Princeton University (postdoc-1964). He taught at the University of Delaware, Marshall University, and Ohio University before joining the faculty of Lehigh University. He was awarded the Hillman Faculty Award in 2011.
Academic Coordinator, Economics
Although Rene worked for several years in Career Services during the 1970s, she returned in 1984 to begin her role in the Economics Department, a job she would remain in for 34 years. In addition to her duties as academic coordinator, she participated in campus and community activities. Most gratifying of these activities was assisting a faculty member and fraternity in raising close to $700,000 for cancer research. Rene’s retirement plans including babysitting “a lot for my three-year-old granddaughter.” She and her husband also hope to travel.
Dr. Thomas Hyclak earned his Ph.D. from the University of Notre Dame. He has been a member of the economics faculty at Lehigh since 1979. His research has focused on empirical studies of labor market outcomes, human resource management innovations, urban and regional economic issues and general themes in economics. In recent years, he has taught principles of economics, intermediate macroeconomics, and a graduate seminar in empirical labor economics. He was chair of the economics department from 1999 to 2005 and interim dean of the College of Business and Economics from 2005-2007 and 2013-2014.
Project Manager, Facilities Services
During his years at Lehigh, Conrad was especially active in environmental activities, including involvement with LEAG, the Sustainability Plan, and the community garden. His work and campus involvement helped connect him with people and departments across the university, all of whom he misses very much. Since retiring, Conrad has moved to Boone, North Carolina, where he is working part-time and continuing his commitment to volunteering.
Serials Cataloging Assistant, LTS
During her career at Lehigh, Cecilia worked at a variety of positions within LTS. She was also involved in the annual Book and Bake sale, MOOV In, the Move Out sale, and Day of Caring. One of the highlights of working at Lehigh for Cecilia was meeting students from outside of the United States. She said, “Learning their traditions and customs was enlightening, and sharing our customs with them made for many great conversations. I found if you embrace those from other cultures, it enriches your own life.” In retirement, Cecilia is enjoying traveling, antiquing, refinishing furniture and gardening, among many other activities.
Carl Jeffrey Lacey
Principal Research Scientist, Chemistry
11 Years of Service
Coordinator, Community Service Office
Leslie’s career at Lehigh included positions in a number of departments, including Iacocca Institute/Global Village program and ATLSS. In addition to her work duties, she also participated in the Great South Side Sale, the Student Affairs Spirit Committee and served as a captain in the SOAR program. Leslie especially valued her time working with student workers over the years. “I always enjoyed helping them find their way with payroll paperwork and other questions. Their energy and enthusiasm is always contagious,” she said. In retirement, she is looking forward to traveling abroad, gardening, crocheting, and cooking.
Program Director, Small Business Development Center
Cora’s first period of work at Lehigh began in 1987 in CTI. She also worked in the Office of the Vice Provost for Research before moving into the SBDC. Reflecting on her varied career at Lehigh, she noted, “I think besides the opportunitity to work with Lehigh Valley companies and see successes with their efforts, I most enjoyed working with students, both undergraduate and graduate. I’ve gotten to work with so many international students from so many different countries. I have been so blessed!” In retirement, Cora is leading a bible study and camping. She is also looking forward to volunteering for several organizations.
Sociology and Anthropology
Dr. Judith N. Lasker is NEH Distinguished Professor in the Department of Sociology and Anthropology. She earned her B.A. at Brandeis and her M.A. and Ph.D. at Harvard. Her major areas of interest are in the field of medical sociology, with particular emphasis on women’s health issues and international health. Her books and articles have reported research on pregnancy loss, infertility, chronic liver disease, heart disease, and time banking. In 2014, Dr. Lasker was awarded the Centennial Medal by the Graduate School of Arts and Sciences at Harvard. Her newest book, Hoping to Help: The Promises and Pitfalls of Global Health Volunteering (Cornell U. Press, 2016), examines the impact on host communities and on volunteers of short-term international service programs in public health and medical care.
Industry Liaison, Center for Advanced Materials and Nanotechnology
During Gene’s career at Lehigh, he also served as chairman of the Lehigh Emerging Technologies Network. He also was a member of the Performance Management Steering Committee and the Tradition of Excellence Award Committee, and volunteered with MOOV during move-in days. Gene’s contributions to Lehigh student success included connecting them with government and industry partners for internships and employment. In retirement, he’s still working part-time at Lehigh, but also enjoying more time to exercise, awaiting the birth of his sixth grandchild, and “looking for an active hobby that I will still be able to do ten years from now.”
Anna Marie Luchini
Enrollment Support Coordinator, Admissions
36 Years of Service
Associate Vice President for Government Relations and Economic Development
In addition to the position from which he retired, Bill also served as associate vice provost for research and manager of industry liaison and technology transfer for ATLSS over the course of his career at Lehigh. During that time he was especially proud of being one of the leaders in the formation of the Pennsylvania Infrastructure Technology Alliance, which was expected to be a short-term program. “I proudly say we are in our 20th year of our five-year program,” Bill said recently. “A great opportunity for our grad students and our statewide and national recognition.” In retirement, Bill is still working part-time supporting research engagement in the P.C. Rossin College of Engineering and Applied Science, but he’s also finding time to play more golf.
Coordinator, Finance and Administration
Kathleen also worked in the Controller’s Office and served as a member of ERAC during her years at Lehigh. She says she took great pride in performing her duties accurately and efficiently, noting, “Years ago, I worked many a Saturday at calendar year-end to keep up with the constant inflow of stock donations.” Her plans for retirement include spending more time with her 96-year-old father, volunteering at Animals in Distress, and enjoying more travel time with her husband, including two vacations this year.
Dr. Christine Novak was a professor of practice of Lehigh University’s College of Education in the school psychology program. She earned her Ph.D. in school psychology form the University of Iowa in 1992. The initiative known as CADRE3—Calculated Actions to Deliver Racial and Ethnic Equity in Education—was among Lehigh’s 2016 Mountaintop initiatives. Dr. Novak mentored this team, which was particularly interested in advancing equitable educational outcomes for those who are socially excluded from a majority culture because of poverty or other birth circumstances.
Manager, Editorial Services, Communications and Public Affairs
31 Years of Service
Director, Distance Education
Peg started her career at Lehigh in the Department of Metallurgy (now Materials Science) and the Office of Summer Sessions. She began working in Distance Education when it was founded in 1991. Peg says she loved being part of the Lehigh community and will miss the faculty and staff she has worked with during her career. Her first plans for retirement are straightforward. “I will not be setting my alarm on weeknights. We’ll do some traveling. I also enjoy tending to my many and growing number of flower gardens.”
Mary Louise Powers
Senior Database Analyst, Enterprise Systems
Mary Louise spent her full career at Lehigh in Enterprise Systems. She also attended and supported meetings for the Data Standards and Data Advisory Committee on campus. In her free time, she participated as a soprano in the Lehigh Choral Union. In retirement, Mary Louise is continuing her enjoyment of music by taking voice lessons. She’s also relearning Spanish.
Coordinator, Lehigh Fund, Development and Alumni Relations
In addition to her time with the Lehigh Fund, Mary also worked in the Lehigh Bookstore and in gift processing in Development. Over the years, she participated in ERAC and the Holiday Party and Annual Dinner committees. Mary recalls a time when everyone pitched in to fill a staffing deficit managing the Lehigh Liners. “I was out to dinner with friends for St. Patrick’s Day and received a call telling me the person who was to be with the callers that night was unable to make it and could I cover the shift at the Observatory. I saw the waitress deliver our dinners. I told the caller I would gladly help out, but could I possibly eat my corned beef and cabbage first?” She closed, “To me this is what a coordinator does for their team; anything they can to support the university, students and the department.” In retirement, Mary is looking forward to volunteering, traveling, weaving more baskets and “learning to co-exist with my husband.”
Director, Library Collections and Scholarly Communications, LTS
In her decades-long career at Lehigh, Christine held a variety of positions in LTS in reference and information services. During that time she also participated in the First-Year Student “one book” program as a discussion leader, was involved in musical activities, and most recently worked with Lehigh students in a tree planting effort to improve the parks throughout Bethlehem. Christine helped further the mission of the university’s libraries and helped bring together the campus and the community through her coordination of programming for the Friends of the Lehigh University Libraries. She organized talks by prominent writers, new Lehigh faculty, postdoctoral fellows and experts in rare books. In retirement, she is looking forward to continued involvement in the city’s greening efforts, playing early music and Balinese gamelan, and hiking in the Southwest.
Chief, University Police
Ed spent his entire career at Lehigh as part of the University Police team. In addition to his duties, he also served on ERAC and participated in Noontime Hoops and softball. Ed enjoyed interacting with the community in his role as chief. He writes, “One of my favorite memories will be the Shop with a Cop program. Over a 15-year period, we spent approximately $150,000 for local families to go on a shopping trip for the holidays with university officers. The families participating in the program were selected by local clergy and schools based on need.” In retirement, Ed is enjoying playing golf, relaxing, and spending time with his grandchildren.
Director, Finance and Administration Systems
Bob worked in the Controller’s Office before taking on the role from which he has now retired. During his career at Lehigh, he also served on ERAC. One of his fondest memories was being present at the birth of Banner in its earliest version on campus. He writes, “I had the pleasure to work with a team of dedicated staff who worked countless hours on this implementation, and we all have the scars to prove it.” Bob has a full plate of plans for his retirement. He is treasurer of his church and plans to volunteer at his local food bank and as a tax preparer during tax season. He also hopes to spend some time traveling, taking care of his parents, and pursuing his interest in classic cars.
Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering
Dr. Cesar Silebi is a professor of chemical engineering and earned his Ph.D. from Lehigh University. Research interests include particle separation processes, rheological and colloidal properties of latexes, multi-component transport in emulsions, and stability of colloidal systems. Dr. Silebi has many publications to his credit.
Dr. Roger Simon is an urban and social historian, focusing on the impact of industrialization and the urbanization process in the United States. He is particularly interested in organized labor and in Philadelphia and New York. He is the author of a monograph on ethnicity and neighborhood-formation in Milwaukee, The City-Building Process, and co-author of a study of the urban adjustment of Italians, Poles, and African-Americans in Pittsburgh, Lives of Their Own. His most recent book is Philadelphia: a Brief History. Dr. Simon earned his Ph.D. from the University of Wisconsin-Madison.
Dr. Kenneth P. Sinclair began his academic career at Lehigh University in 1972. He served as department chair from 1988-2007 and senior advisor to the dean from 2007-2013. He has held leadership positions with professional accounting organizations and served on numerous academic and advisory committees. He has received several awards for teaching and service, including the first Pennsylvania Institute of Certified Public Accountants’ Outstanding Accounting Educator Award. Professor Sinclair has researched and written on a myriad of subjects related to managerial accounting. From 2005-2013, he served on the board of directors, serving as audit committee chair, for Lannett Company, a publicly traded, generic drug-manufacturing firm. He was also a member of the Nominating and Governance Committee and the Compensation Committee. Dr. Sinclair earned a doctorate degree in business administration from the University of Massachusetts.
Coordinator, Development and Alumni Relations
Diane worked in a variety of capacities in Development and Alumni Relations during her three decades at Lehigh. She also served on the staff picnic and holiday party committees. She particularly valued the time she spent working on the development of the Tower Society with Ferd Thun ’56. As she said, “I looked forward to talking with Tower Society members year after year at the breakfast – they are the most gracious group of people I ever had the privilege of working with during my time at Lehigh.” In retirement, Diane plans to get to more of her grandchildren’s soccer and volleyball games, travel more and do more of what she loves in general, including gardening, reading and swimming.
Dr. Lee Stanley earned his Ph.D. from the University of California in 1977. He joined Lehigh in 1982.His research interests are set theory and mathematical logic. He was recognized and awarded the Schaufeld Award for Advising Excellence on March 26, 2015 at the College of Arts and Sciences Faculty Dinner.
James Swenson ’59
Principal Gifts Officer, Development and Alumni Relations
Jim spent his entire Lehigh career as a fundraiser in Development and Alumni Relations. Jim recalls the impact that one mentor had on his work. “One of the legends at Lehigh was Paul Franz, the first vice president of development. I first got to know him when I was a student,” he said. “Early in my career as a fundraiser at Lehigh, Paul gave me some great advice. He said, ‘Jim, if you do it right, you’ll never have to ask, but don’t be afraid to ask, because you may be helping someone do the first thing they will ever do [to support Lehigh].’” In retirement, Jim plans to volunteer – for Lehigh!
Lehigh University Art Galleries Teaching Museum
Art, Architecture, and Design
Professor Ricardo Viera is a Lehigh Valley, Pennsylvania-based artist and curator working with installation; drawing/painting/printmaking; theory of photography; socially engaged art and performance. Viera has worked since 1974 as director and chief curator of the Lehigh University Art Galleries (LUAG) Teaching Museum, where he has established a visual laboratory and teaching collection program as well as a nationally recognized collection of Latino and Latin American photography and video. He is a professor of art in the University’s Department of Art, Architecture & Design, teaching museum and curatorial studies, photography as contemporary art, visual thinking strategies. Viera is a core faculty and member of Latin American and Latino Studies teaching Latin American photography and Latino: visual art and culture in the USA. He is a noted artist scholar, lecturer, panelist, portfolio reviewer, exhibition curator, and consultant for government arts and cultural agencies, nonprofit organizations and private enterprise/visual art projects. Viera’s research focuses on balancing and integrating visual and cultural retentions and rediscoveries. He holds a diploma from the School of the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston; BFA, Tufts University; MFA Rhode Island School of Design; and a Certificate of Museum Management Program, University of Colorado Museum, Boulder.
Electrical and Computer Engineering
Dr. Meghanad Wagh earned his B. Tech and Ph.D. in electrical engineering from the Indian Institute of Technology, Bombay. He has been at Lehigh since 1984. Before that, he taught for four years at Old Dominion University, Norfolk, VA. At Lehigh, he was the head of the computer engineering division in the Department of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science and later, the co-director of the Computer Engineering Program jointly monitored by the ECE and CSE departments. His teaching interests lie in the areas of digital circuits and systems. His research focuses on applying abstract algebra to develop new and fast algorithms and improved algorithm mappings on parallel architectures. He also works on nano electronic systems for computing.
Coordinator for School Psychology and Comparative and International Education Programs, Education and Human Services
Over her many years of service to Lehigh, Share worked in several areas of the university, including Accounting, Payroll, the Printery, and eventually, the College of Education. When asked to share a story about her time at Lehigh, Share responded, “I guess the best ‘story’ about working at Lehigh is its close-knit family that provides opportunities to share and care for each other. Also the fun atmosphere gives time to relax and work hard! My mission was to enjoy the benefits of working together--it started 55 years ago. Friendships made 40 years ago from the Alumni Building, friends in the Dean’s Office; yes, here is where life-long friends begin. And no small matter--through a Lehigh Bible Study I also met my husband, George; we will be married 22 years. So you see an everyday position at Lehigh reaps lasting friendships of deep understanding, love and caring throughout life.” She added, “I had also been blessed by having my twin sister, Charmaine (Maine) work at my same place of employment. This enabled us to take vacations at the same time and travel the world!” Share says she’s just getting started on her retirement adventure. And travel is on the horizon.
Civil and Environmental Engineering
Dr. John Wilson earned his Ph.D. in civil engineering from the University of Pittsburgh in 1972. Dr. Wilson conducts research in collaborative information systems and computer modeling and simulation of multi-faceted systems. His recent research projects include life-cycle engineering and decision science applications in complex systems. He has more than 35 years’ experience in the modeling design and design of large infrastructure systems. Dr. Wilson also has published approximately 90 professional papers. He is co-founder and former associate director of the National Science Foundation Engineering Research Center on Advanced Technology for Large Structural Systems (ATLSS). He has also served as academic advisor to the Construction Industry Institute (CII). He was director of graduate studies for the CEE department from 2001-2016.
Research Scientist, Center for Advanced Materials and Nanotechnology