Message from Alumni Council President
Among the elements that differentiate Dartmouth from its peers – its wooded location; the rugged spirit of its students; the liberal arts education that pulsates beneath the surface of the Green like an academic heartbeat – is its fiercely loyal and closely engaged alumni body.
There are nearly 80,000 of us, when you take into account those who roam the girdled earth with a Dartmouth bachelor’s degree (including the Class of 2017, whom we welcome to the alumni body), as well as others who have left Hanover clutching medical, engineering, business, and other graduate degrees.
We’re a large, passionate and diverse group. And that is one reason that Ernest Martin Hopkins created the Dartmouth Alumni Council in 1913: to provide the College’s sprawling alumni network, its population now larger than the cities of Scranton and Kalamazoo, with a representative body. (Three years later, Hopkins would become President of Dartmouth.)
Hopkins intended the Council as a forum to give voice to a range of alumni sentiment, at a volume loud enough for the administration in particular to hear, as well as to function as the eyes and ears of those graduates who may no longer crisscross the Hanover Plain but still care deeply about Dartmouth and its students.
The 125 members of this year’s Alumni Council include one delegate elected by each undergraduate class from the Class of 2017 back to the Class of 1962, as well as three councilors whose collective constituency encompasses every class that has celebrated its 55th reunion. There are also councilors who represent regional clubs, affinity groups, and the graduate schools, and several who serve at-large.
The Council convenes in Hanover each fall and spring to meet with President Hanlon, representatives of his leadership team, and members of the Board of Trustees, as well as with students and professors. Among our responsibilities is to pepper them with questions (yours, as well as ours), and to then share with our constituents what we have heard and seen.
In some years – 2017 is one of them, as are 2018 and 2019 – the Council is tasked with placing before the alumni body nominees for vacancies among the eight Alumni Trustee positions, which the alumni body is responsible for filling. The Board itself chooses an additional sixteen Charter Trustees, and two more are ex-officio – the President of the College and Governor of New Hampshire – for a total of 26.
I want to express my thanks to the Alumni Council Nominating Committee – led this year by Alyse Streicher ’95, and last year by John Banks ’90 – for helping us as a Council sift through the names of hundreds of alumni who have distinguished themselves in countless ways. Learn more about the process here.
If you want to suggest alumni whom we might consider for future Trustee vacancies, I invite you to do so. Please also let your Councilor or me know about any issues you would like to bring to the Council’s attention, or drop me a line to share a story about the role Dartmouth has played in your life.
And if you’re interested in getting involved with the Council, I would encourage you to contact your class officers, those who lead your local Dartmouth club, or a group with which you are affiliated – or visit this page for more information.