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In the Loop
General News : Feb 9, 2015

College of the Arts forms Alumni and Friends Council

By Melissa Pascale

The College of the Arts is pleased to announce the formation of its inaugural Alumni and Friends Council. The founding council consists of two members with a connection to each of the college’s schools—the School of Art + Art History, School of Music and School of Theatre + Dance—and will serve multi-year terms with the option of reappointment. Representing the School of Art + Art History are Lois Rule and Maggie Taylor. Rule holds a BA in sculpture from UF and an MBA from Georgia Tech, and is the co-founder and co-owner of 2 Rules Fine Art. Taylor is a digital image artist and photographer who received a philosophy degree from Yale University and a master’s degree in photography from UF.

Bill Booth and Dr. Tammy McDowell will represent the School of Music. Booth earned his bachelor’s degree from UF in music education, and worked as a music professor prior to founding Relative Workshop, owning United Parachute Technologies, holding 12 U.S. and international patents and becoming a pioneer in the skydiving industry. McDowell earned a bachelor’s degree in microbiology and cell science and her M.D. from UF. She is an associate with Physicians Associates of Florida in Orlando, Florida, and is a proud Gator Band alumna.

John Pinckard and Linda Wilson will represent the School of Theatre + Dance. Pinckard is a two-time Tony Award-winning Broadway producer currently represented on Broadway by A Gentleman’s Guide to Love and Murder. Wilson earned a BFA in drama from UF, attended Miami-Dade College’s nursing program and completed courses toward a BFA in Visual Art at Florida International University. She is the
 director of Birthroot, A Wise Woman’s Place.

With incredible and diverse accomplishments, the college ambassadors represent a wide variety of life experiences and unique perceptions that will enrich the college’s programs. The council members met for the first time in Gainesville, Florida, on Friday, Jan. 30, 2015 to discuss the goals and responsibilities of the group and their overall vision for the direction of the college. While in town, the council was able to meet with school directors and students and tour the college’s facilities and galleries.

As the University of Florida makes a concentrated effort to establish itself as a top 10 nationally ranked university, the council is aiming at advancing the mission of the College of the Arts to help contribute to the achievement of this goal. The input of acclaimed friends and alumni is a vital resource, especially at this pivotal time for the university as a whole. The council’s expert vision is sought in contributing ideas and resources and strategies for the college.

“We are thrilled to announce the formation of our College of the Arts Alumni and Friends Council,” said Lucinda Lavelli, dean of the College of the Arts. “Part of our college’s mission is to provide our students with creative and cultural opportunities and reach members of the community, nation and world, and we strongly believe that this diverse and prominent council will not only help our college accomplish this, but our university as a whole.”