St. Mary's College of Maryland
photo by Jay Fleming '09

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Lee Capristo, editor
The Mulberry Tree
Phone: (240) 895-4795
18952 East Fisher Road
St. Mary's City, MD 20686

Remembering Maggie

Written by Lee Capristo

Maggie brought to the presidency her deep belief that St. Mary's is distinctive because of its sense of place. . . . She has been a close partner in all aspects of the Maryland Heritage Project that link the College and the City. . . . Maggie deserves full credit for the fruition of so many new College-City collaborations. . . . I know she and I share a strong hope that the constructive relationship between the College and the City will remain solid under new leaders.
-Marty Sullivan, former executive director and CEO of Historic St. Mary's City (now director of the National Portrait Gallery, Smithsonian Institution)

Bilbo Baggins, the protagonist of J.R.R. Tolkien's The Hobbit, advises that 'adventures tend to make one late for lunch' or maybe it was dinner, I can't remember. In any case, traveling with Maggie is an adventure and you are often late or entirely miss your lunch. Maggie packs more into one day than most people attempt in a week. Her ideas come fast and furious. She sorts through them at a remarkable pace but sometimes she forgets to factor in the comforts of life, lunch for instance. Meals often consist of crackers and cheese bought at the nearest shop and eaten on the bus or while driving to the next event. She always has the best interest of the students and the College in her sight. The relationship she has nurtured with CMRS is invaluable for both institutions.
-Elizabeth Osborn, professor of sociology

Maggie brought with her a great vision of the College-one that connected back to our legacy as the "monument school." In this regard, there was never a doubt in her mind about the importance of the affiliation with Historic St. Mary's City. . . . Her vision for the institution created an infectious energy for all of us that worked for her.
-Torre Meringolo, vice president for development and executive director of the St. Mary's College of Maryland Foundation

I have never witnessed such devotion as Maggie gave to the College. . . . She worked tirelessly to institute new international programs and to improve those in existence.
-June Weiner Auerbach '49, trustee emerita

Maggie's lasting legacy is easy to spot when visiting with our alumni or current students. The alumni gatherings always have a number of former students who want you to know how Maggie made sure they graduated. . . . There are countless students who have recovered from financial disaster, benefited from Maggie's guidance through a personal difficulty, or simply needed someone to listen.
-Tom Botzman, vice president of business and finance

While Maggie will be remembered as a builder of buildings and a power in the legislative political sector, it was in the academic area that she was a visionary. She understood that St. Mary's College was an experiment in state higher education and she embraced that vision. . . . She understood that students will live in a society that will be interacting with the world. . . . She understood that citizens' understanding of democracy is critical to the vitality of the nation and she developed the Center for the Study of Democracy. She leaves St. Mary's College with a vision and structure that expands, through education, a democratic society.
-J. Frank Raley, trustee emeritus

Traveling with Maggie was a non-stop exploration of every aspect of a new (or familiar) place, but particularly of the people, how they went about education or leadership, how they wrestled with the problems they faced, and how we as Americans or as educators might learn from them. . . . Maggie's leadership style was to be a learner, and many times I saw her receptive attitude lead to improved plans for collaboration and mutual benefit.
-Donna Scarboro, former ACE fellow at St. Mary's (now associate vice president for international programs, The George Washington University)

My admiration for Maggie was grounded in working with her when our students were attacked in Guatemala (1998). From the beginning of the ordeal, Maggie demonstrated a steadfast position of protecting the students and prosecuting the criminals. Her leadership, compassion, creativity and resolve were put to the test for well over a year. In that time she became to me a role model, mentor, hero, and an example of modern leadership in difficult and uncertain times.
-Mike Freeman, former vice president and dean of the College (now vice president of student affairs at Tennessee State University)