June 28, 2022

NEW Staff Advisory Council Website

The Staff Advisory Council has a new website: https://in.umw.edu/sac/. The website contains a list of SAC members, so please reach out to an SAC representative or use the Contact Us form if you have a question or concern.

Crawley Announces Great Presidential Lives Online Series

Professor Emeritus of History William B. Crawley offered commentary in The Free Lance-Star on Founding Father and America’s third president Thomas Jefferson in advance of the Great Presidential Lives series, which launched on Aug. 11. The online series will be available at https://www.umw.edu/greatlives/.

Dr. Crawley also appeared on “Town Talk” with Ted Schubel on 1230AM/WFVA: https://www.newstalk1230.net/episode/bill-crawley-great/


FLS Commentary: IN RECENT years, as biographers have reinterpreted the lives of significant historical figures, there has been a tendency toward denigrating the reputations of a number of previously hallowed individuals.

In this process—referred to, sometimes derisively, as “revisionism”—perhaps no figure in American history has suffered a greater decline in stature than Thomas Jefferson.

To be sure, the third president had enemies in his own times, including one who ineloquently referred to him as a “son of a bitch” and a “red-headed rascal.” Others, in contrast, revered him as the “Sage of Monticello,” emphasizing his immortal precept that “all men are created equal.”

In a letter to James Madison dated Feb. 17, 1826, Jefferson implored his friend and presidential successor to “take care of me when dead.” He need not have worried, at least for his immediate posterity.

Indeed, for more than a century following his July 4, 1826, death, the preponderance of historical opinion—either diminishing or ignoring altogether his involvement with slavery and his racist views—was so uniformly in Jefferson’s favor that one historian, writing in the 1940s, declared that “the enemies of Thomas Jefferson are all dead or else are in hiding.”

But with the coming of the civil rights movement in the 1950s and 60s, biographers began to focus increasingly on his personal life, which presaged the end of Jefferson’s secular sainthood. One critic pointed out the irony that “the leisure that made possible Jefferson’s great writings on human liberty was supported by the labors of three generations of slaves.” Read more.

View the first Great President Lives video here: https://www.umw.edu/greatlives/lecture/thomas-jefferson/.

REMINDER: Be sure and take the COVID-19 training ASAP

The following message is from the COVID-19 Implementation Team.

To all faculty and staff:

As a first step in our we-are-all-in-this-together approach to reopening, we are requiring every member of our community to complete a COVID-19 training module and sign-off on the Mary Washington Pledge. Employees must complete the MMDC training BEFORE they come to campus and no later than August 18, whichever comes first. Also, you will note in the training that all UMW employees are required to submit a health attestation every work day. Many thanks to employees who have completed the training and are faithfully completing the Eagle Health form each day.

To access the COVID training:

  1. Please use Firefox or Chrome to access this training.
  2. Login to the Learning Center https://covlc.virginia.gov using your Learning Center credentials. These credentials may not be the same as your UMW  credentials; to reset your login ID or password use the forgot your login ID or password option to reset either or both.
  3. Enter UMWCOVID in the Search box (magnifying glass in the upper right).
  4. Open the item: UMW COVID Training.
  5. There are 3 required items; they must be reviewed in the order listed. Click on each item and then click on Access Item.

-UMW Return to Campus – Watch the video, then mark the item complete.
Click UMW COVID Training in the Search Results box at the top to return to main training page.

-#ForwardUMW – Read the content in the presentation, then mark the item complete.

Click UMW COVID Training in the Search Results box at the top to return to main training page. If you click on one of the links, when done   with the link close it and click on the #ForwardUMW to return to the training.

-UMW Eagle Pledge – Read the Eagle Pledge, then mark the item complete. Doing so indicates that you have read the document and will comply.

If you need assistance logging into the Learning Center, please reach out to Pam Lowery (plowery@umw.edu).

Landphair Pens Column on John Lewis in Richmond Times-Dispatch

Vice President of Student Affairs Juliette Landphair

Vice President of Student Affairs Juliette Landphair

Vice President of Student Affairs Juliette Landphair, who is the Farmer Legacy 2020 co-chair, penned a column in The Richmond Times-Dispatch on the late Rep. John Lewis’ legacy and the impact that he and Dr. James L. Farmer Jr. have had on the University of Mary Washington and its students.

Sixty years ago, much like today, many American young adults were on fire to dismantle racial discrimination. U.S. Rep. John Lewis, D-Ga., who recently passed away as an international icon for civil rights and public service, was one of them. Born in 1940 into a tenant farming family in Pike County, Ala., where half of their cotton crop’s earnings went to the white landowner, Lewis grew up in a poor, rural part of the nation completely alien from stereotypical recollections of 1950s consumerism and suburbanization. As historian Dr. Andrew Lewis recalls, John Lewis’ childhood “conjures up a world that the twentieth century seemed to have passed by.”

While in college at American Baptist Theological Seminary in Nashville, Tenn., Lewis became active in civil rights protest. Over a few critical months in late 1959 and early 1960, he and other young activists, including the extraordinary (and not enough remembered) Diane Nash, attended workshops on nonviolence and its philosophical roots, taught by the minister James Lawson. Principles such as the power of the collective and the redemptive community settled into Lewis’ conscience and remained the rest of his life; he later described “crossing over” into a lifelong commitment to the movement in 1960 while participating in the Nashville sit-ins.

At my institution, the University of Mary Washington (UMW), Lewis figures prominently in our story. We like to think it is a special bond, but of course, Lewis made all admirers feel important. In 1961, Dr. James Farmer, leader of the Congress of Racial Equality (CORE), who later became a Mary Washington College professor, helped recruit the 21-year-old Lewis to join 12 others on the Freedom Rides. They would travel on two buses through several Southern states challenging interstate transportation facilities. During the Rides, Lewis was attacked by angry whites in South Carolina and Alabama.

More recently, Lewis agreed to serve as honorary chair of Farmer Legacy 2020, UMW’s yearlong celebration of the 100th anniversary of his friend Dr. Farmer’s birth. This past November, in his official acceptance of his chairperson role, Lewis met with a small UMW delegation in his Capitol Hill office for nearly an hour. I was fortunate to be among the attendees. With his celebrated warmth and humility, he spent nearly an hour with us, asking about UMW and our lives, and sharing stories. He especially was attentive to Jason Ford, our Student Government Association president who, as a black man himself, knew he was in the presence of a giant on whose shoulders he stood. Read more.

Coffman Discusses Inequity in U.S. School Districts on WalletHub.com

Professor of Education Teresa Coffman

Professor of Education Teresa Coffman

College of Education Professor Teresa Coffman was recently interviewed for a WalletHub.com article on “States with the Most and Least Equitable School Districts.” The COVID-19 pandemic has exacerbated the discrepancies that already existed between more affluent schools districts, which tend to receive a greater amount of funding per students, and those that are less affluent, the article states. Coffman was one of six professors from universities across the country to share their expertise.

Dr. Coffman: It has become common knowledge, and unfortunately an almost accepted practice, that many of our nation’s teachers pay for their classroom supplies out of their own pockets because of the inequity in funding. This means that particular groups of students are left behind, even before the instructional day begins in a school. Currently, the coronavirus pandemic and the need for schools to move to virtual learning due to the contagious nature of this disease has placed a spotlight on the inequities in opportunity within communities and funding for schools. Even beyond funding, this has resulted in varying questions relating to the purpose of our public schools as it relates to the needs of our country and all who live in its jurisdiction by many state leaders, parents, and community members. Read more.

Broome Talks ‘Education Innovation’ on With Good Reason Radio

College of Education Professor John Broome created the Higher Ed Learning Collective to help faculty members around the world adjust to teaching online. The Facebook group now boasts over 30,000 members in more than 100 countries. Photo by Kristi Meacham.

College of Education Professor John Broome created the Higher Ed Learning Collective to help faculty members around the world adjust to teaching online. The Facebook group now boasts over 30,000 members in more than 100 countries. Photo by Kristi Meacham.

University of Mary Washington Associate Professor of Education John Broome will be featured on the With Good Reason public radio show. The episode, “Education Innovation,” will air daily beginning tomorrow, Aug. 15, continuing through Aug. 21. When COVID-19 shuttered college campuses worldwide, Broome quickly made a Facebook group for professors to support and teach each other. Now an international resource, more than 30,000 professors are working together to prepare each other to teach this fall. With Good Reason airs Sundays at 2 p.m. on Fredericksburg’s Radio IQ 88.3 Digital and at various times throughout the week on stations across Virginia and the United States. Check the website for show times.

Richardson Column in The Free Lance-Star

UMW College of Business Dean Lynne Richardson

UMW College of Business Dean Lynne Richardson

College of Business Dean Lynne Richardson’s weekly column in The Free Lance-Star discusses TREATING PEOPLE WITH RESPECT.


Once upon a time, there was an organization. This organization welcomed a new head person. This person had come from a similar organization where he had years of experience as the head guy.

Months into the new person’s tenure, a beloved manager was visited by the new boss—she was not doing things as he expected. Even though she was an expert, he wanted to tell her how to do her job. She pushed back a bit. At the next staff meeting, with all of the managers in attendance, he demeaned her in front of her peers.

Appropriately, she went to him privately after the meeting and expressed her distress at being berated in front of her colleagues. He was dismissive of her remarks. She soon resigned.

People in the company took sides. There were those who thought he was well within his rights to have both told her what to do and, when she wasn’t willing to roll over, talk about her to her colleagues. Others were appalled at his behavior. Certainly, they agreed, he could express his desires about how she did her job, but they could not believe he made derogatory remarks about her in front of her peers.

Many in the latter group went to the employee who resigned and asked her to reconsider. She would not. A schism formed within the organization.

What went wrong? Read more.

Farnsworth Comments in the Regional and National News

Stephen Farnsworth, professor of political science and director of the University’s Center for Leadership and Media Studies

Stephen Farnsworth, professor of political science and director of the University’s Center for Leadership and Media Studies

Stephen Farnsworth, professor of political science and director of the University’s Center for Leadership and Media Studies, has been quoted in several regional and national news stories:

NY Attorney General Sues to Dissolve NRA (CTV News Channel) 

Congresswoman Abigail Spanberger vs. Delegate Nick Freitas – Edition #1 (Virginia Seven Newsletter) 

Trump, Trade and Tariff’s on the Drive with Jock Wilson 9 (CHQR segment on US- Canada Trade)

With Tactics Honed On Climate Change, Ken Cuccinelli Turned to the Portland Streets (Inside Climate News)

Donald Trump v. COVID-19 (CTV News Channel)

Hogan Passes Torch to Cuomo, Reflects on Role of Governors and Trump in the Pandemic (Maryland Matters)

Poll Shows Growing Distrust of Media Among Americans (Courthouse News Service) 

Manhattan D.A. Trump Investigation (CTV News Channel)

Mail-In Voting / COVID And Inequality (WHRO public radio Hear/Say)

Stalemate Over Unemployment Insurance (CTV News Channel)

Trump Pushes for Election Day Delay (CTV News Channel) 

Trump suggested election delay to distract US from worst slump in economy, says Internet: ‘A complete failure’ (MEAWW) 

‘President Pelosi’ trends after Trump suggests delaying 2020 elections, House Speaker would be ‘next in line’ (MEAWW) 

Trump suggests delaying 2020 elections, claims mail-in voting amid pandemic will be ‘incorrect and fraudulent’ (MEAWW) 

Obama slams Trump for pushing ‘nativist, racist, sexist’ fears during private meetings with party donors: Report (MEAWW) 

Virtual Honor Convocation 2020

All faculty and staff are encouraged to watch this year’s virtual Honor Convocation, which will be viewed by all incoming students at 4:00 p.m., Friday, August 21 through Zoom:  https://umw-sso.zoom.us/j/93389264525.  UMW’s annual celebration of honor can also be viewed at any time by visiting: https://academics.umw.edu/academicintegrity/honor-convocation-2020/

Buster-Williams’ Research Project featured in Richmond Times-Dispatch

Vice President for Enrollment Management Kimberley Buster-Williams

Vice President for Enrollment Management Kimberley Buster-Williams

Vice President for Enrollment Management Kimberley Buster-Williams was featured in an article in the Richmond Times-Dispatch on Sunday, July 26, 2020. The feature story discussed the discovery of her grandmother’s connection to a national social organization.


Kimberley Buster-Williams celebrated a joyous Christmas Day with her family in December, but it would be an unwrapped box she opened a day later that would turn out to be the most beloved of gifts.

Buster-Williams, of Fredericksburg, stumbled onto an unknown family legacy when she began looking through family pictures and documents last December that had belonged to her grandmother, Mary Hewlett Brown. The family matriarch and native Richmonder died in late January at age 98. Those who knew her called her Lollie.

Those she held closest in her heart called her “Mama Lollie.”

Buster-Williams intended to use the box of photos and documents to gather information for the obituary she would eventually write for Mama Lollie. That day after Christmas, however, as Buster-Williams began sifting through the contents of the box, she found a folder labeled “Epicureans,” an organization she’d only ever heard of in passing.

She was intrigued.

Earlier this year, with those same documents spread out on a table before her, Buster-Williams said she was curious back in December about what she found. There was a 1944 photo of 11 young, well-dressed Black women surrounding a table with what appeared to be cut-out letters that spelled “EPICUREANS.” Her grandmother was there, in the midst of the group. Read more.