Timothy Dreisbach '71's recent letter asserts, without any factual basis, that the recent upward trend in donor participation is somehow related to the election of petition trustees ("Petition Candidates and Alumni Participation," Sept. 28). This is mere speculation (if not wishful thinking).Having voting positions on the Alumni Council for affiliated groups is not 'being nice' or compensatory—they are a necessary part of a vigorously active alumni body. To take their votes away (they do have votes now under the current system, something most critics won't tell you) would be hamstringing the effort to increase alumni participation. That would simply be silly.
In fact, a significant increase in alumni participation can be directly attributed to the hard work of the college's affiliated groups. D-GALA (Dartmouth's Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgender Alumni/ae Association), for instance, has increased its participation rate from 26.7 percent in 2002 to 43.7 percent in 2006 -- 17 full percentage points --- through greater communication with alumni, regional events, and fundraising initiatives. (This year alone, contributions from D-GALA members funded scholarships for four students.) Likewise, the other affiliated groups have also increased their participation rates over the past few years through similar outreach. Petition candidates and trustees do not deserve credit for these achievements.
The affiliated groups are a valuable financial resource for the College, as these increased participation rates demonstrate. A "yes" vote on the proposed constitution will provide the affiliated groups with the representation they warrant and ensure that this upward trend continues into the future.
October 4, 2006
Posted by Andrew Seal at 7:48 AM