Like many Rice alumni, especially those living outside of Houston, I don’t have the opportunity to visit campus as often as I would like. As a result, I am always eager to see the work of Rice’s photographers, and the photo essay in this newsletter presents some of the best examples of what they do — capturing high profile events as well as the sort of everyday activities that I remember best from my time as a student. Cell phone cameras and social media are important — and I strongly encourage you to follow the Association of Rice Alumni on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram — but there will always be something special about the kind of carefully crafted photography that comes from dedicated and talented professionals.
The end of June also marks the end of my term as president of the Association of Rice Alumni. Though I won’t go over all the details of our board’s work this year — I could talk your ear off about the important efforts of our committee selection task force, for example — I do want to highlight the major actions from our May board meeting.
First, the board unanimously approved a resolution endorsing the Vision for the Second Century, Second Decade (V2C2), and committing to active support for the V2C2. Part of that support is acting as a conduit for ongoing communication between Rice alumni and university leadership regarding implementation of the V2C2. I urge you to reach out to Rice alumni board members about the V2C2. Your engagement is critical as we represent alumni during implementation of this new strategic plan.
Second, the board unanimously approved our new strategic principles document, which describes a high-level set of principles that will guide the board’s work over the next few years. In drafting these principles, we sought to recognize not only what has made Rice the university we love, but also Rice’s future as envisioned in the V2C2 and the evolving nature of our alumni population. The strategic principles document is posted on the Rice alumni website with an opportunity to provide feedback, which will help guide our implementation of these principles.
Third, I actually will tell you a little bit about the committee selection task force after all. As part of a comprehensive review of how we fill our board committees, the task force recommended a change to the association’s bylaws regarding the board’s nominations committee, which selects new board members. The amendment provides for the president to appoint the president-elect as chair of the committee and to delegate to the president-elect the duty of selecting the other committee members, in consultation with the board’s executive director — which is consistent with current practice. The board approved this change unanimously, and our constitution mandates that we notify the association — which means all of our alumni — of any such changes. Please take a few minutes to review the change here.
Finally, it has been an incredible honor to serve as president this year. I am grateful for all the support I’ve received from my fellow board members, alumni across the country and around the world, and the hardworking Rice staff. I am excited that as of July 1 the role will be filled by Michol Ecklund ’97, whose intelligence and energy will help her lead the Association of Rice Alumni to accomplish even greater things for all of our alumni.
Matt Haynie ’03
President, Association of Rice Alumni