Campus News

Bowdoin Honors Retiring Faculty and Staff

Story posted May 16, 2001

Bowdoin College recently honored those faculty and staff members who have retired or will retire during the current academic year. President Edwards acknowledged each of the retirees as having made a major contribution to why "this College works!"

Members of the faculty retiring this year are Edward S. Gilfillan III, adjunct professor of chemistry and lecturer in environmental studies; Larry D. Lutchmansingh, associate professor of art history; John McKee, associate professor of art; C. Thomas Settlemire, professor of biology and chemistry; and James H. Turner, associate professor of physics.

Staff members who have retired or are retiring during the current academic year are Roland Levesque, senior kitchen supervisor, Dining Service; Robert Labbe, groundskeeper; Orman Hines Jr., dining service purchasing manager; Richard Stevens, carpenter; Irene Hilton, economics academic department coordinator; Armand Bernier, landscaper; Sarah Jensen, secretary, Hawthorne-Longfellow Library; Raymond Tetreault, operations assistant/team leader, Dining Service; and Richard E. Steele, vice president for admissions and student aid.

Retiring Bowdoin Faculty

Edward S. Gilfillan III came to Bowdoin College in 1977 as director of the Marine Research Laboratory, a position he held for two decades. He specializes in oil spill research throughout the world, especially on the effects of petroleum and toxic metal contamination on marine communities. He has published dozens of articles on topics including the Exxon Valdez and Amoco Cadiz oil spills.

A native of Trinidad, Larry D. Lutchmansingh came to Bowdoin in 1974. In addition to his teaching duties, he directed the art history program from 1977-79 and chaired the art department from 1981-85. In 1987 he visited Sri Lanka as one of four Bowdoin professors taking part in a six-week program to develop South Asian studies in the consortium of ISLE (Intercollegiate Sri Lanka Educational) Program schools.

John McKee came to Bowdoin in 1962 as an instructor of French, was the director of the Bowdoin College Center for Resource Studies from 1966-67, and was a lecturer in art from 1969-87. He has been associate professor of art since 1987, and has taught many courses in photography. He has organized frequent photographic exhibitions at the Bowdoin College Museum of Art, and has published and exhibited his photographs widely.

C. Thomas Settlemire joined the Bowdoin faculty in 1969. In addition to teaching, he served as chair of the biology department from 1979-83 and 1991-94, and served on the Biochemistry Committee. His major research interests have included ion translocation process in cells, biochemistry of B-lymphocyte activation, and the use of genetic analysis tools to upgrade the performance of domestic sheep flocks. He has recently worked on the genetic upgrade of the Katahdin Hair Sheep.

James H. Turner joined the Bowdoin faculty in 1964, and was promoted to the rank of associate professor of physics in 1970. He also served as the chair of the department of physics and astronomy several times during the 1970s, ‘80s, and ‘90s. He has been advisor to pre-engineering programs and coordinator of combined engineering programs at Bowdoin since 1969. His areas of interest and expertise are electronics, cosmology, and thermo-physical properties of metals.

Retiring Bowdoin Staff

Roland Levesque began at Bowdoin as a cook in 1969, became a baker in 1972, a chef in 1979, and head chef in 1989. A familiar face to both students and employees in the dining hall, he will retire in August after 32 years at the College. He was the first recipient of the athletic department’s Polar Bear Award for his outstanding service to Bowdoin’s traveling sports teams. Before coming to Bowdoin, he served as a cook in the Navy, and was aboard the vessel that picked up the Apollo 7 space mission crew.

Robert Labbe, known as Bob, started at Bowdoin as a security guard in 1973. He joined the grounds crew in 1978, and in 1983 transferred to the Dayton Arena crew, where he remained until his retirement last January after 27 years. From 1997 until this winter, he single-handedly conducted the campus litter patrol, and took pride in keeping the campus looking magnificent.

Orman Hines Jr. came to Bowdoin in 1976 as assistant chef of dining services, and was promoted to his present position in 1998. Known for his customer-friendly attitude and willingness to lend a hand in all situations, he is greatly respected by his staff. Outside of work, he dabbles in archaeology, and assisted with digs in Phippsburg. He will retire in June after 24 years at the College.

Richard Stevens, known as Dick, began his Bowdoin career in 1977 as a finish carpenter. During his 23 years at the College, he won the admiration of coworkers for his carpentry expertise, which contributed greatly to the overall level of craftsmanship within the carpentry shop. He retired last August.

Irene Hilton came to Bowdoin as the Academic Department Coordinator for the Economics Department in 1980, and has served in that capacity ever since. She balances the work of 10-12 faculty members, coordinates the work of the department, and recently played the key role in the department’s conversion to electronic communications. She will retire this July after 20 years of service.

Armand Bernier began his career at Bowdoin in January 1984 as a groundskeeper and mechanic, and in 1992 was promoted to the position of landscaper. In 1993 he received Bowdoin’s Employee Excellence Award. He often spent seven days a week on campus, maintaining everything from flower beds to the outdoor skating rink. He retired last June after 16 years.

Sarah Jensen has worked 15 years at Bowdoin, and will retire in June. In addition to working at the Library, she took classes one or two at a time throughout the years, and at the College’s 196th Commencement Exercises May 26 she will receive her A.B. degree as a graduate in the class of 2001. She is also a massage therapist who runs a business from her home.

Raymond Tetreault first came to Bowdoin in 1981 as Dining Service Warehouse Manager. After leaving the College in 1984, he returned again in 1985, and in 1997 became the operations manager in Dining Service at Moulton Union. He is a past recipient of Bowdoin’s Employee Excellence Award. He retired last June after 15 years of service.

Richard Steele will retire June 30 after ten years at Bowdoin College. Dick has had a remarkable career in admissions, and is known as one of the most respected admissions deans in the country. Among his many accomplishments are increasing the student applicant pool (Bowdoin achieved a new record of 4,534 applicants for the Class of 2005); establishing Bowdoin’s National Merit Scholars program; initiating Bowdoin’s Posse and Chamberlain Scholarship programs, which helped the school recruit and retain students of color; and initiating recruiting in Europe and Asia.

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