Virginia Community College System (VCCS) :  This blog relates directly to a self-directed project that I am pursuing as a Chancellor’s Commonwealth Professor (2012-2014), and it is made possible through the generous funding and support that the VCCS provides.

Susan Finsen:  The blog masthead is based on a sculpture that Susan Finsen gave me when I took an early retirement from the Library of Congress in 1998.

At that time, Susan worked in the Library’s Congressional Research Service, having also served as Acting Director of Human Resources, where I worked.  She was also an artist with a studio at The Torpedo Factory Art Center in Alexandria.

On each of the sculpture’s four sides, Susan had carved a phrase capturing an aspect of my life that she knew was important to me:

  • Research  — Mary E. Wilkins Freeman (I had spent ten years editing Freeman’s correspondence and writing The Infant Sphinx:  Collected Letters of Mary E. Wilkins Freeman.)
  • Manage Ben (I worked as Special Assistant for Human Resources, and Ben was my boss and friend.)
  • Escape — Edinburg (I had a house in Edinburg, Virginia, where I escaped on the weekends.)
  • Cook (I loved to cook, and I still do.  Thai is a favorite.)

Aaron Riddle: The actual blog masthead seen here is Aaron Riddle’s photograph of the original art, with the blog title superimposed on one side of the sculpture.

Aaron is the Graphic Design and Digital Media Specialist at Lord Fairfax Community College.  Additionally, he is a professional wedding and portrait photographer.  I must credit Aaron as well for the blog’s layout and design.

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