Distinguished Alumni Address 2012 Graduates
As Muskingum University celebrates its 175th year,
undergraduate and graduate commencement exercises featured addresses
by five distinguished alumni. On May 3, master’s degree candidates at
graduate commencement heard Elizabeth Topping Mainiero ’57. On May
5, William T. Dentzer, Jr. ’51 and Mrs. Celia Hill Dentzer ’52 addressed the Baccalaureate service. Undergraduate commencement exercises
featured Nikhil Deogun ’91 and Dr. Allison Kimmich ’91.
Graduate Commencement: Elizabeth Topping Mainiero ’57
Topping Mainiero has played a pioneering role in shaping the library
for the information age, fundamentally enhancing the way these vital
resources serve citizens of all ages.
Throughout her forty-year career in library leadership,
her groundbreaking initiatives spanned the full range of library
services and administration. She dedicated her efforts to improving
libraries’ ability to serve their constituencies, manage their
organizations, construct new facilities, and engage in long-range
Ms. Mainiero launched an integrated library system in
1978 –the second of its kind in the nation and the first east of the
Mississippi River. She convinced libraries across New England to invest
in shared emerging computer technology – linking their circulation and
collection data, transforming local resources into regional ones, and
widening public access to library materials. Her efforts led to many
“firsts” in federal library grant funding and paved the way for today’s
She was one of the first to recognize the library’s
emerging role in providing opportunities for conversation and social
interaction, complementing the long-standing library tradition of quiet
study and exploration. When she engaged nationally-known architect
Cesar Pelli in 1994 for the Greenwich Library’s addition and renovation,
she included informal gathering and work spaces for library patrons in
the facility’s program – the precursor to today’s “internet cafes.”
An English major at Muskingum, Ms. Mainiero earned her
Master of Library Science from Carnegie Mellon University. She
currently consults with libraries throughout New England on building
programs and long-range plans. She shares her talents with educational
organizations, serving on the Board of Governors of St. Timothy’s School
(Stevenson, MD) and as a trustee of St. Gabriel’s School (Milford, CT),
and the Whitby School (Greenwich, CT).
She and her husband Vincent Mainiero reside in Milford,
Connecticut, where they enjoy spending time with their four children –
Morrow, Lisa, Bonnie and Kimmo – and their 10 grandchildren. They are
frequent travelers to historic and nature sites such as Machu Picchu,
Easter Island, Galapagos Islands, Antarctica, Africa, Malta, Turkey,
Greece, and Egypt. A formerly licensed private pilot, her interests
also include photography, scuba, skiing, boating, and hiking.
Ms. Mainiero’s daughter Bonnie Long Gorman ’88, her
mother Clara Bentley Topping ’27, and her aunt Kathryn Bentley Schaefer
‘27 are fellow members of the Long Magenta Line.
Baccalaureate: William T. Dentzer, Jr. ’51 and Mrs. Celia Hill Dentzer ’52
T. Dentzer, Jr., Class of 1951, graduated with a Bachelor of Arts
degree in Political Science. While at Muskingum, he was Student
Government President, college orator, and debate team member.
Throughout his distinguished career, he has helped shape our national
economy. He is the founding Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of The
Depository Trust Company, and he served in high-level federal and state
government posts under U.S. Presidents Kennedy and Johnson and New York
State Governor Rockefeller.
As a deeply-committed, long-time member of the
Muskingum University Board of Trustees, Bill Dentzer’s leadership and
stewardship has helped shape this institution’s future in significant
ways, ensuring Muskingum’s continued hallmark of educational excellence,
which comes to fruition in the daily lives of our students and alumni
and those whose lives they touch.
Celia Hill Dentzer, Class of 1952, graduated with a
Bachelor of Science degree in Education. She was Women’s Activities
League president, Class Secretary, May Queen, and a cheerleader while at
Muskingum. She was born in India to missionary parents, and the
experience of her early years profoundly shaped her life-long
commitments to the Presbyterian Church. In her Larchmont, NY community
she has been Clerk of Session, President of The Woman's Club, and
President of her P.E.O. chapter.
Celia Dentzer’s dedication to serving others is
embodied in the life she has led in full partnership with her husband,
rearing five children, and together they have served Muskingum, the
Presbyterian Church, our nation, and the world.
Together they chose for our students the words of
wisdom from I Thessalonians – “test everything; hold fast that which is
good” –engraved on the cornerstone of the Walter K. Chess Center. Their
voice and their example of leadership and service will resonate with
Muskingum students for generations to come.
Undergraduate Commencement: Nikhil Deogun ’91 and Dr. Allison Kimmich '91
Deogun is the Senior Vice President and Editor in Chief Business News, CNBC,
overseeing Business Day content, coverage and production. Deogun joined
CNBC in 2010 as Managing Editor, Business News.
Deogun joined CNBC from The Wall Street Journal,
where he was the Deputy Managing Editor, a position he had held since
July 2008. Deogun oversaw all financial coverage for the news
organization and directed the Journal's international network of bureaus and correspondents. Prior to this, Deogun was editor of the Money & Investing section, where he oversaw coverage of Wall Street, banking, hedge
funds, private equity, mutual funds, financial markets, investing and
personal finance. From March 2004, Deogun was Deputy Chief of the Journal's Washington bureau. In this role, he focused on overseeing business and
regulatory coverage in addition to shepherding investigative projects.
Deogun joined The Wall Street Journal as a reporter in Atlanta
in 1994 and moved to the New York bureau in June 1999 where he covered
mergers and acquisitions and corporate finance for the paper's Money & Investing section. Deogun later spent three years as editor of the Media &
Marketing section where he oversaw coverage of entertainment,
publishing, advertising, consumer products, fashion, retail and other
Deogun grew up in Calcutta, India and attended the Doon
School in India. He earned a bachelor's degree and graduated summa cum
laude from Muskingum University in New Concord, Ohio. He then receiveda
master's degree from the University of Missouri's School of Journalism.
He is married to Allison Kimmich and has two children.
Kimmich serves as the National Women's Studies Association executive
director, which she joined in 2004. Under her leadership, NWSA has
grown into an international network of nearly 2,500 members with
professional development, research, and advocacy initiatives to support
women’s studies and women’s center professionals.
Dr. Kimmich serves as the public voice for NWSA and has
represented the Association by organizing a convening of women’s
studies faculty at the invitation of the White House Council on Women
and Girls. She has also been invited to serve as an expert on a
Department of Education-sponsored roundtable on higher education and
civic engagement. Her efforts to advance diversity at NWSA were
recognized when the National Council for Research on Women awarded NWSA
its Member Center Diversity and Inclusion award in 2010.
She previously served as the director of pre-college
programs at Barnard College, where she developed a Young Women’s
Leadership Institute and taught feminist theory in the undergraduate
women’s studies program. She has also worked as the assistant director
of the Women Involved in Living and Learning (WILL), an academic and
co-curricular program at the University of Richmond.
Dr. Kimmich grew up in Chardon, Ohio and earned a
bachelor’s degree in English and French from Muskingum University. She
holds a Ph.D. and M.A. in women’s studies from Emory University. She is
married to Nik Deogun and has two children.