Dartmouth Recognizes Retiring Professors


Twelve members of the Arts & Science faculty who retired this year were honored at a reception after the June 1 faculty meeting. Nine of the professors recently spoke with Dartmouth Now about their time at Dartmouth and what they’ll miss when about teaching here, and some shared their plans for the future.


The 2015 retiring Faculty of Arts & Sciences professors include, from left, Laura Conkey, Jonathan Crewe, Peter Travis, Nancy Frankenberry, Ernest Hebert, Bruce Duncan, Carl Pomerance, Margaret Williamson, Samuel Velez, and Ronald Green. Not pictured are Russell Hughes and Edward Berger. (Photo by Eli Burakian ’00)

Laura Conkey

“My field of study is perhaps best described as field biogeography: Why are plants and animals found where they are, and how do they interact and survive? Thus, the teaching and research that has been most inspiring to me has been to take students out into the field to learn about how the natural environment works. What I will miss most of all are the students who opened themselves to the learning I offered, who went out into the field with eyes open and minds full of questions. I learned so much from them, perhaps to their surprise.”

Jonathan Crewe

“The two primary institutions in which I have worked, namely Johns Hopkins and Dartmouth, were very well endowed institutions with good morale, gifted, and reasonably eager students, mostly congenial colleagues, and, at least throughout my time, vibrant humanities programs. Happily, my 25-year experience of the College (and its students) has been one of continuous improvement, expanding opportunities, and growing diversity. I leave Dartmouth with fondness and respect, and certainly with a sense of the highly privileged, congenial academic life it affords.”

Bruce Duncan
German studies

“I’m looking back fondly on the opportunities that I had to teach a wide variety of courses in language and literature, to direct lots of off-campus programs in Mainz and Berlin, and to follow my own interests in assorted scholarly topics. The early years of computing at Dartmouth were particularly exciting, and I also found a surprising amount of satisfaction in administrative activities. But most of all I appreciate the many wonderful students and colleagues that I got to know in the process.”

Nancy Frankenberry

“I will now be a senior fellow at the Martin Marty Center for the Advanced Study of Religion at the University of Chicago for 2015-16 and working on a book that focuses on the challenges of evolutionary biology to religious faith and practice in the U.S. in the last 150 years. I have completed 50 consecutive years in higher education. I feel extremely grateful to have had so many amazing students along the way, and so many cherished colleagues who have enriched my intellectual life, both in the religion department and throughout the College.”

Ronald Green

“In my 46 years at Dartmouth, I appreciated the ability to contribute to the national discourse on important issues while based in this Edenic refuge in the North Country. Dartmouth’s support for the rare combination of teaching and research—from a generous sabbatical policy to outstanding computer and library resources—made it easy to move back and forth between researching and writing on major ethical issues and bringing the fruits of that work back to our excellent students.”

Ernest Hebert

“I loved my 25 plus years at Dartmouth—great students and colleagues, sensitive administration, handy libraries, a schedule to allow me time to write my novels, and the best elm trees in New England. Many of my students go on to law school, finance, medical school, and other careers but some, much to my surprise, actually become writers. I say ‘surprise’ because I never set out to train writers. For me creative writing is just another way of thinking that students are exposed to at Dartmouth.”

Russell Hughes

“The real purpose of classroom teaching is for a professor to inspire students, with the ultimate goal of independence from the teacher. I have tried to do this in occasionally unorthodox but, I hope, memorable ways. Fortunately I have had role models in the chemistry department to whom I will always be grateful. As I retire from teaching, I plan to devote myself exclusively to research. I am grateful to the chemistry department and the College for allowing me to continue my individual research program and maintain all my ongoing collaborations both inside and outside Dartmouth.”

Carl Pomerance

“Number theory and its applications in cryptology are my area of expertise. I have mentored nine Dartmouth PhD students and supervised four undergraduate honors theses. One of these students won the inaugural Gazzaniga Award for the best scientific research project by a Dartmouth undergrad. The intellectual stimulation of working with our wonderful students will be missed sorely, but I am in touch with many of them, often writing joint research papers. Maybe I will even come to meet some new students in the future."

Peter Travis

“There are two quite outstanding privileges I have enjoyed in my 45-year teaching career at Dartmouth. The first is the wide variety of classes I have been able to teach, from Icelandic sagas and Chaucer’s Canterbury Tales to literary theory and modern masculinity. The second is the enthusiasm, intelligence, and imaginative energies of the Dartmouth students themselves. I am astonished by how the intellectual quality of the undergraduate mind has improved dramatically with every new class.”

The other professors who have retired from the Faculty of Arts and Sciences:

  • Edward Berger, biological sciences
  • Samuel Velez, biological sciences
  • Margaret Williamson, classic and comparative literature

The Geisel School of Medicine marked the retirement of 14 faculty members during the 2014-15 academic year:

  • David Barrett, clinical professor of surgery
  • Alastair Craig, clinical associate—psychiatry
  • Christian Hallowell, adjunct assistant professor of pediatrics
  • Horace Henriques, associate professor of surgery
  • Charles Ingardia, clinical assistant professor of obstetrics and gynecology
  • Melanie Mastanduno, instructor, The Dartmouth Institute for Health Policy & Clinical Practice
  • John McClellan, clinical associate professor of obstetrics and gynecology
  • Debra McQuade, clinical associate—psychiatry
  • Frances Norris, professor of psychiatry
  • James Rigas, professor of medicine
  • Mindy Schorr, assistant professor of obstetrics and gynecology
  • Coralea Wennberg, assistant professor of community and family medicine
  • Nancy Weingarten, instructor, community and family medicine
  • Hillary White, adjunct associate professor of microbiology

The Tuck School of Business has had one retiree in 2015: Mary Munter, professor emeritus of management communication.

No professors on the faculty at Thayer School of Engineering have retired this academic year.

Joseph Blumberg