Three teaching professors—Teresa J. Arendell (sociology), Michael A. Marlais (art), and Leonard S. Reich (science, technology, and society)—are retiring from Colby this year. Librarians Toni Katz and Margaret Menchen, both faculty members without rank, and President William D. Adams, formally a professor of philosophy, also are retiring.
Terry Arendell, professor of sociology, arrived at Colby in 1994 after earning her Ph.D. at University of California, Berkeley, completing a postdoc at the National Institute on Aging, and teaching at several other colleges and universities. Her research interests—gender and family and qualitative research methodology—made her an acclaimed expert on these subjects, according to Dana Professor of Sociology Tom Morrione, who introduced her at Colby’s faculty retirement dinner. She published books including Fathers and Divorce, Mothers and Divorce, and Contemporary Parenting: Challenges and Issues, the last of which she edited.
Arendell, mother of Rob Arendell ’91, praised increased diversity at Colby since her arrival, both in the makeup of the student body and in the number of women in the faculty, particularly senior women professors. She said she will miss the “friendly and supportive environment” on campus and the students, whom she described as “eager to learn.”
In Morrione’s introduction he noted that Arendell, in her 20 years at Colby, personally oversaw 26 field experiences, 20 honors and research theses, nine internships, 14 independent studies, and nine senior scholars. More recently in her career she earned a certificate in Jungian psychology. “It’s long been very obvious to me,” said Morrione with a chuckle, “that her interest in becoming a Jungian psychoanalyst, which she now is, blossomed as she observed what goes on in the Sociology Department at Colby.”
“In one semester here I had more interdisciplinary interactions than I’d had in eight or nine years at Rutgers.”
Lenny Reich, professor of administrative science and of science, technology, and society, earned his Ph.D. in the history of science and technology at Johns Hopkins University and established his reputation editing the Thomas Edison papers, according to Professor of STS James Fleming, who introduced him. Reich published The Making of American Industrial Research: Science and Business at GE and Bell, 1876-1926 in 1989. At Colby he was instrumental in establishing the STS program and he taught courses in the history of technology, the history of energy, and the history of oil, Fleming said.
“Coming to Colby in 1986,” Reich said, “I felt I had landed in the promised land. In one semester here I had more interdisciplinary interactions than I’d had in eight or nine years at Rutgers.” As a historian, he reviewed the 28 years he spent on the faculty, noting changes in students and student culture. Highlights included the official abolishment of fraternities two years before his arrival and the evolution of Cotter Union including its initial construction, the 1996 addition of the Pugh Center for multicultural organizations and programs, and the 2007 completion of Pulver Pavilion and the new bookstore that turned it into a true social center on campus. He also noted the arrival of Davis United World College Scholars from all over the world and the recent success in the way diverse groups of students interact more as important developments. “Colby has been changing,” he concluded, “very much for the better.”
Michael Marlais, the James M. Gillespie Professor of Art, earned his Ph.D. at University of Michigan after he had taught for two years as a lecturer in Colby’s Art Department. He retired after 31 years on the faculty. His areas of specialization are contemporary American, modern, Italian late medieval, and southern baroque art.
Marlais initially earned a B.A. in English literature and political science at St. Mary’s College of California, and then he earned a second bachelor’s degree in art history at Cal State Hayward before pursuing his master’s and doctoral degrees at Michigan. He contributed to numerous scholarly publications and gave public lectures on a wide range of topics. He curated about a dozen exhibitions at the Colby museum and elsewhere, often collaborating with students and colleagues.
Toni Katz retired after 31 years in the Colby libraries, where she was more recently assistant director for technical services. Peggy Menchen retired after 25 years and was most recently the Colby libraries’ assistant director for public services.
President Bro Adams, who retires after 14 years as president of Colby, was awaiting confirmation hearings as President Barack Obama’s nominee to chair the National Endowment for the Humanities. Colby magazine covered Adams’s retirement in the spring 2014 issue.