Spring 2012

Shock Talk

Crowson cartoon"What we've found is that we're really loving the things we're doing now, watching students perform, going to events. There's this heightened feeling, where we are savoring everything that we see and do, everyone we talk with."

— WSU President Don Beggs, as quoted by Roy Wenzl in a March 31 article in the Wichita Eagle about his and his wife Shirley's last months on campus. In September 2011, Beggs announced his decision to resign his post as the university's 12th president after members of the Kansas Board of Regents named a successor — which they did during an April 27 news conference on campus: John William Bardo.

"I drink to your health when I'm with you. I drink to your health when I'm alone. I drink to your health so often, I darn near ruin my own."

— Mickey Armstrong '45, in a goodhumored toast to Shirley Beggs who was an honored guest at the April 18 founders party of Women United for the Shockers, a donor group organized by Kate Taylor and Cindy Carnahan '73 to support the WSU Alumni Association and its mission.

"I've been going to Shocker baseball games since Gene Stephenson's first year as coach back in 1978 when there were only a couple of bleachers and a flatbed trailer for fans to sit on. I bleed black and gold."

— Rudy Rodriguez '87/96, in his winning response to a Shocker baseball promotion on B98 FM radio. For the honor of throwing out the first pitch of the Wichita State vs. Kansas State game on May 1, listeners were asked to call in and compete in proving they are the most fervent Shocker fans in the region.

WSU president John BardoSelected from among five finalists, John William Bardo was introduced April 27 by the Kansas Board of Regents as the next president of Wichita State University.

The announcement was made during a special regents meeting, news conference and reception in the Rhatigan Student Center's third-floor ballroom. Bardo, who served from 1995 to 2011 as chancellor of Western Carolina University in Cullowhee, N.C., will become the university's 13th president, effective July 1.

WSU alumni, administrators, faculty, local media and other interested parties watched with anticipation as Ed McKechnie, chair of the Kansas Board of Regents, took the stage for the board's final vote on the presidential appointment and the official introduction of the new president. "The board," McKechnie said, "is proud to announce that Dr. Bardo will be the next Wichita State University president. He rose to the top of an exceptional field of candidates. The board believes his leadership experience and vision for WSU are an outstanding fit to honor the traditions and shape the future of WSU." In addition to Bardo, the finalists for Wichita State's top position were Glen Hahn Cope, Chuck Staben, Lisa Rossbacher and Bjong Wolf Yeigh. The day before the announcement, McKechnie commented, "A special thank you to the members of the WSU Presidential Search Committee. This talented and dedicated group of individuals made a commitment to help the board find the best candidates from around the nation." A number of alumni served on this committee, including the chair, Steve Clark '65, Deltha Colvin '72, Al Higdon '61, Bill Moore '74 and Tyler Heffron '02, WSU Alumni Association president.


Shock Talk

Shockers everywhere, at events long ago or happenings just the other day, always have something interesting to say.