An estimated 600 shoeless feet were the first to rush onto the sparkling new grass as President Carl (Tobey) Oxholm III—barefoot and brandishing a bullhorn—led the countdown for students lined up with scissors to cut the ribbon and lead the flood onto Haber Green to celebrate the opening of the field after more than a year of construction. (Photos; video.)
"I've never seen so many people on the field," said a student amazed by the crowd.
"I’m thrilled today to have our students join with us in the unofficial opening of Haber Green, which honors our alumna Lois Haber and her husband Michael for their generous support to this University," says President Oxholm.
"As you may know, Lois was the Board Chair who provided the charismatic and determined leadership that resulted in the construction of this impressive new student center, the University Commons, which is nearly complete. Lois and Michael are dedicating Haber Green in honor of her class, the Class of 71, and the many lifelong friendships that Lois developed when she was a student here."
Judy Odonovich, the Class of 1971 Class Editor, represented the class in cutting the ribbon simultaneously—to the accompaniment of a roaring crowd led by President Oxholm—along with about 40 students. Jey Auritt, another member of the Class of 1971 and a member of the Board of Trustees, was all smiles as she joined the crowd on Haber Green and watched the barefoot students enjoy games and pizza.
"Lois is the first alumna Board Chair in our history and only the 22nd Board Chair in the University’s 158-year history. We all know that the position of Board Chair requires an extraordinary level of commitment. As a Board member and Chair, Lois was involved in advancing all areas of the University, that including bringing faculty, students and alumni closer together into a true community. She launched assessments of areas importance to the University ranging from Alumni Relations to campus security and even disaster recovery for our vital data and information systems," notes Oxholm.
"Lois’ achievements are many. In business, she excelled as co-founder, CEO and president of Delaware Valley Financial Services Inc., which grew to become a leading administrator of annuities and life insurance for the insurance industry. By the time she sold DVFS in 2003, it had grown significantly. As a tribute to her success as an entrepreneur, Lois amassed multiple honors as a leader among women business owners."