Duke University Alumni Magazine


n attorney, a manufacturing executive, an aspiring attorney, a financial consultant, and a minister have been elected to Duke's board of trustees. Frank E. Emory Jr. '79, J.J. Kiser III '65, Christopher Lam '98, John A. Schwarz III '56, and the Reverend Charles A. Smith '62, M.Div. '65 have been elected to their first terms as members of the thirty-seven-person board.

Emory, of Charlotte, North Carolina, is a partner in the law firm Robinson, Bradshaw & Hinson and a member of the North Carolina Board of Transportation. He has chaired the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Planning Commission, the board of directors of Legal Services of Southern Piedmont, and the board of directors of the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Urban League, and has been a director of SouthTrust Bank of North Carolina. A member of Duke's Trinity College board of visitors since 1993, he has also served on the board of directors of the General Alumni Association, the Annual Fund's executive committee, Duke's Policy Implementation Committee on Divestiture, and the B.N. Duke Scholarship Committee.

Kiser, chairman and founder of American Fiber & Finishing Inc., based in Westford, Massachusetts, has served on Trinity College's board of visitors since 1991, including two years as chair. He has supported a number of projects at Duke, including the Brodie Recreation Center on East Campus, the Fuqua School of Business, and the planned Richard White Lecture Hall. He also serves on the steering committee of the new Campaign for Duke, and is a past chair of Duke's Boston Executive Leadership Board.

Lam, who recently earned his bachelor's degree in public policy studies, was elected to serve as the "young trustee" on the Duke board. He will spend the first year of his three-year term as a non-voting observer. Last summer, he worked at the Federal Judicial Center in Washington, D.C. He is attending law school at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, where he was awarded a Chancellor's Scholarship. A former Duke Student Government vice president, he was awarded a Harry S. Truman Scholarship in 1997. He also received the Terry Sanford Public Service Award, given to a graduating public policy major at Duke who has demonstrated leadership in the community.

Smith, senior pastor at First United Methodist Church in Wilson, is a member of the Duke Divinity School's board of visitors. He has served on the National Council of the Duke Divinity School Alumni Association and as an adjunct instructor for the divinity school, and has worked on Duke Medical Center's development staff. An accomplished musician, he has sung for performances of Handel's Messiah in Duke Chapel.

Schwarz, an independent investment adviser and president of the Duke Alumni Association, is serving a two-year term on the board. His first year will be spent as a non-voting member and he will be an active member the second year--the year after his presidency of the alumni association. He is chairman of the Duke University Museum of Art Committee and serves on the New York area alumni club's major speakers program. Before becoming an independent investment adviser, Schwarz was a senior vice president at Kidder, Peabody & Company.

Poster project: David Ferriero, vice provost for the library system, persuaded some Duke notables to lend their images to help "get the library out there in people's faces." Each participant picked a favorite book and locale for the shoot.

From left to right, President Nannerl O. Keohane in Perkins' Biddle Rare Book Room with a copy of Virginia Woolf's A Room of One's Own; John Hope Franklin, James B. Duke Professor of history, emeritus, at his home, reading Shades of Freedom by Leon Higginbotham;

English professor Karla Holloway, director of African and African-American Studies, in her office with Song of Solomon by Toni Morrison; and author Reynolds Price '55, James B. Duke Professor of English, in the dorm room of his junior and senior years at Duke, reading John Milton's Paradise Lost from a copy that belonged to Milton's daughter Deborah.


hen the university closed its books June 30 on fiscal year 1997-98, Duke celebrated another milestone in giving levels at $255 million. The recordĐ16 percent more than last yearĐwas set by 100,893 donors who made a total of 126,263 individual gifts.

President Nannerl O. Keohane says the healthy economy was one of several significant factors in the increase. "We know that people give in part because they care and in part because they are able to give."

Equally important, she and other officials maintain, is a stronger and better coordinated fund-raising program that has grown in recent years as Duke prepares for a major campaign. "We've got the volunteers and the professionals working together and the schools collaborating successfully," Keohane says.

Individual gifts (excluding bequests) increased 26.9 percent to reach $74.7 million. Corporate giving totaled $95.2 million, up 22 percent, and foundation giving was $31.2 million, up 4.7 percent. Annual giving, which is important to funding current operations, set a record of $13.5 million--20.5 percent more than last year and representing 11 percent beyond the goal set by annual fund officials.

The leading donor in 1997-98, as in most years, was The Duke Endowment, the university's most generous benefactor. Gifts from the philanthropic organization created by Duke's founder, James Buchanan Duke, totaled $30.9 million, just over 12 percent of all gifts.


uke is expanding its America Reads literacy program for Durham school children this year to include faculty and staff volunteers as well as undergraduate and graduate student tutors, according to Elaine Madison, director of Duke's Community Service Center. A joint venture of the federal government, the university, Glaxo Wellcome, and the Durham Public Schools, America Reads helps place literacy tutors in local schools.

Duke's Community Service Center and Duke's Community Affairs office are coordinating the university's participation in the project with assistance from the office of undergraduate financial aid. "We've got the program well established now and it's a good opportunity for everyone to participate," Madison says. "We're asking people to set aside one lunch hour a week to work with a child."

Madison anticipates about ninety volunteers this year. Since the costs of training, reading materials, and transportation for the students cannot be covered in the work-study funds under federal regulations, Duke asked Glaxo Wellcome, one of the world's largest pharmaceutical companies, to help make the program a reality. As it did last year, Glaxo Wellcome is providing $20,000 for reading materials, teacher stipends, transportation, and training sessions.

The Durham Public Schools' board of education has established a goal for all third-graders to read at statewide competency standards by the year 2000. An estimated 40 percent of America's fourth-graders cannot read at the basic level on challenging national reading assessments. Studies have shown that if students can't read well by the third grade, their chances for later success are significantly diminished, including a greater likelihood of dropping out, fewer job options, and increased delinquent behaviors.

The Duke tutors give individualized attention to children in kindergarten through third grade. These learning partners meet with their young reading partners two to three times each week for about thirty minutes. Madison says the volunteer tutors make a commitment of one semester, two hours a week. Work-study tutors will be working with the students for six to twelve hours each week for two semesters. All tutors will be trained and assisted by reading specialists in the public schools.


ight years after their marketable timber was logged, parcels of Indonesian rain forest contained levels of tree species diversity comparable to those measured in nearby unlogged forest land, a scientific study has shown.

"These results go against a lot of popular dogma," says Charles Cannon, a Duke doctoral student and lead author of a report published in the August issue of the journal Science. "The results to me are very preliminary, but I think the main point is to take from this is that logged forests are not necessarily destroyed," Cannon says. "If they're selectively logged in one cut, there is a great deal of disturbance and damage. But the forests are more resilient than perhaps people have given them credit for.

"This is not pro-logging," he adds. "It's not saying that forests are going to be improved upon by logging. And it's not saying that logging doesn't need to be carefully controlled and managed well."

The Science report was co-written by David Peart, an associate professor in biological sciences at Dartmouth College, and Mark Leighton, director of the Laboratory of Tropical Forest Ecology at Harvard University's Peabody Museum. Funding for the research described in the Science report came from the Conservation, Food, and Health Foundation Inc., and the U.S. Agency for International Development.

"Everyone talks about logging in such tropical forests, but there is surprisingly little information about what happens to them after they're logged, particularly in Asia," says Cannon. To fill that gap, Cannon and his co-authors selected sites that had been "selectively" logged--meaning harvested of commercially desirable trees above a certain size--either one or eight years before. The logged sites also were intermixed with areas that had not been previously harvested because they were inaccessible to heavy machinery or otherwise not worth the loggers' time. That proximity of undisturbed and disturbed areas let the researchers assess the overall impacts caused by logging.

Indonesian government rules, which Cannon noted are not rigorously enforced, restrict logging activities to trees at least 50 centimeters (about 1.6 feet) in diameter as measured at chest height. Thinking ahead to the next generation, Cannon, with help from his co-authors, decided to do detailed inventories of smaller trees, between 20 and 30 centimeters in diameter, at the study sites. Their rationale was that the young would be the ones robust enough to eventually fill the gaps created by felled timber and the damage of harvesting machinery, as well as produce the seeds that would regenerate the area, Cannon says.

Detailed comparisons showed that areas logged just a year before had 43 percent fewer different species of these smaller trees than did unlogged sites. But the picture was far different at sites that had been given eight years to recover from logging. Overall, the "species richness of small trees in the eight-year logged site approached that of unlogged forest," says their Science report, which also acknowledged that the reason for this is unclear.

It is important to emphasize that these sites "are not going to recover to their former natural state," Cannon says. "They've changed." In fact, the study notes that logging seemed to increase the numbers of a commercial camphor tree family that produces wood as well as edible fruits and seeds.

Studying such disturbed forests, in addition to places like Gunung Palung National Park, is crucial, Cannon says. "We should not just focus our resources and energy on pristine forests that have not been tampered with in any way, because those areas are probably not going to be large enough to maintain populations of plants and animals in the future. We also need to know more about the areas surrounding these protected forests and investigate their conservation potentials."


Can we talk?: Biological anthropologist Cartmill and Neanderthal skull
Photo: Jim Wallace

uke Medical Center anthropologists have offered anatomical evidence from skulls suggesting that human vocal abilities may have appeared much earlier in time than is suggested by the first archaeological evidence for speech. By measuring the pencil-sized "hypoglossal canal," which carries the motor nerve controlling the tongue, in the skulls of humans, apes, and fossil hominids, they found that the canal in Neanderthals and early humans more closely matched that of modern humans than did the smaller canals of apes and proto-humans such as Australopithecus.

The scientists, professors of biological anthropology and anatomy Richard Kay and Matt Cartmill, and former student Michelle Balow '97, published their findings in the April Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. In their studies, they made rubber casts of the hypoglossal canals in skulls of chimpanzees, gorillas, and humans, as well as those of three specimens of the early "man-ape" Australopithecus, two archaic members of the genus Homo, two Neanderthals, and one early Homo sapiens.

"Our conjecture is that the size of this canal reflects the fineness of the motor control over the tongue in people," Cartmill says. "People don't need a big nerve to the tongue so they can eat; people don't process their food any better than apes do. And that's what the tongue is mainly for in most mammals--for the stereotyped behavior of manipulating food to position it for chewing."

The researchers found that the canals in humans measured about twice as large as those in chimpanzees. The Australopithecus canals proved to be ape-sized, but, by contrast, the Neanderthal and early human canals fell within the human range. To correct for possible differences in the size of the tongues controlled by the nerves, the scientists plotted canal size versus the size of the oral cavity. The apes and Australopithecus samples measured about half the relative size of those of humans and Neanderthals.

Because Neanderthals first evolved about 300,000 years ago, the Duke scientists' evidence disagrees with the theory that human speech may not have arisen until about 40,000 years ago, based on the unambiguous appearance of symbols in the archaeological record. Some researchers infer the presence of language abilities from such symbols as body ornamentation and deliberate burial practices, as well as evidence of such collective action as hunting or the design of habitation sites.

The Duke findings also disagree with those of scientists who measured the base of the Neanderthal skull in an attempt to reconstruct the vocal tract. Those scientists concluded that Neanderthals and earlier hominids may not have had the ability to produce the full range of sounds that humans produce.

Kay and his colleagues emphasized that further measurements must be made to refine their data. For example, besides the hypoglossal nerve, the canal carries two tiny arteries and a vein, and the Duke scientists are assuming that these structures are about the same size in apes, humans, and fossil hominids. The scientists plan to compare these blood vessels in apes and humans to confirm that they are similar.

They will also conduct measurements of more fossil hominids to fill in the roughly two-million-year gap between the fossils of Australopithecus and the archaic humans they studied. Such further studies might reveal a steady increase in the size of the canal, Cartmill says. The scientists' initial work was supported by the Duke University Research Council, and current work is being supported by the L.S.B. Leakey Foundation.

Neanderthal man is generally considered a subspecies of Homo sapiens. The Neanderthals' culture included stone tools, fire, burial, and cave shelters. The so-called classic Neanderthals were robust and had a large, thick skull, a sloping forehead, a chinless jaw, and a brain somewhat larger than that of modern humans; they stood slightly over five feet. It is unclear whether Neanderthals were replaced by Homo sapiens sapiens or interbred with other early humans.


  • Stephen A. Cohn, a fifteen-year veteran of Duke University Press, was named its new director, effective October 1. He succeeds Stanley Fish, an English and law professor who will leave Duke to become dean of arts and sciences at the University of Illinois at Chicago. Cohn joined Duke Press in 1984 as manager of its journals division.

  • RoseMary Watkins is the new director of Programs for Persons with Disabilities. She was director of disability services and compliance at Emory University. Watkins, who earned her master's in rehabilitation administration at the University of San Francisco, has served on various national and international executive advisory boards, including the Association of Higher Education and Disability and the Georgia Association of Disability Service Providers in Higher Education.

  • Steven I. Pfeiffer was appointed director of Duke's Talent Identification Program (TIP), as well as a research professor in psychology, in August. TIP, founded in 1980 and currently the largest of four programs of its kind in the country, identifies and assists academically talented seventh-graders and sponsors summer educational programs at Duke. Pfeiffer, a nationally recognized expert in the field of children's mental health, was psychology professor and director of the school of psychology at Fairleigh Dickinson University in New Jersey.

  • Juliann Tenney J.D. '79, former North Carolina assistant secretary of commerce, is the new director of strategic initiatives for Duke Law School. She will help the school develop its research centers and initiatives in public law, law and business, environmental law, health law and policy, information technology and telecommunications, and intellectual property.

  • Michael K. Orbach is the new director of Duke's Marine Laboratory in Beaufort, North Carolina. He succeeds Joseph S. Ramus, who retired after ten years as director to return to teaching. Orbach, who joined the Marine Lab faculty in 1993, is a professor of marine affairs and policy and director of the Coastal Environmental Management Program.

  • Leo J. Charette, director of the Office of Career Services at the College of William and Mary, will become director of Duke's Career Development Center, effective November 2. He succeeds John Noble, who left Duke last fall to head the career development center at Harvard University's John F. Kennedy School of Government.

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