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Commanding Presence

Col. Deborah Marquart Liddick ’88 Leads Joint Base San Antonio-Lackland  During Time of Change

Col. Deborah (Marquart) Liddick '88 is commander of Air Force Basic Military Training at Joint Base San Antonio-Lackland, Texas, where some 35,000 recruits entering the Air Force annually receive basic military training.

Col. Deborah (Marquart) Liddick ’88 is commander of Air Force Basic Military Training at Joint Base San Antonio-Lackland, Texas, where some 35,000 recruits entering the Air Force annually receive basic military training.

By Vicki Mayk

When Col. Deborah (Marquart) Liddick ’88 learned she was assigned to command Air Force Basic Military Training at Joint Base San Antonio-Lackland, Texas, shortly after sexual misconduct scandals there made national headlines, she said just two things to her commanding officer.

“ ‘I’m ready, sir,’ ” Liddick recalls telling the four-star general. “The only other question I asked was, ‘how soon?’ He said, ‘Within days.’ ”

Since assuming command at the base in September 2012, Liddick has been charged with carrying out the 46 recommendations made for improvement following an investigation by Chief of Air Force Safety Maj. Gen. Margaret H. Woodward. The investigation followed a scandal cited as one of the largest in military history. It included some 31 female recruits reporting infractions, ranging from rape to inappropriate relationships. At least 34 military training instructors were investigated and to date 26 have been convicted by court martial. Four received disciplinary action and two are still under investigation.

“Certainly it was a challenging job coming in and, looking back, it hasn’t been the easiest job,” she says. “It’s helped that I am someone who believes in doing things by the book. If you are fair and consistent and you train folks to understand the rules and meet your expectations, and hold them accountable, you are going to succeed.” Continue reading


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Illuminating Engineer

Architectural lighting designer Caleb McKenzie ’70 dramatizes shopping centers, skyscrapers and soccer stadiums

Caleb McKenzie '70 stands in Gastronomie 491 on New York City's Upper West Side. McKenzie designed the lighting for the store which combines a cafe and market.

Caleb McKenzie ’70 stands in Gastronomie 491 on New York City’s Upper West Side. McKenzie designed the lighting for the store which combines a cafe and market.

By Geoff Gehman

Caleb McKenzie ’70 is discussing his lighting design for the upper exterior of the St. Regis Hotel in Manhattan, a beacon of luxury for over a century. He considers the Beaux Arts building “a little jewel box,” so he decided to polish the gems. He lit the ornate cornices and whimsical windows with an elegant wash of metal halide, creating the gentle illusion of a colossal candelabrum.

“You want the effect to be interesting but not overwhelming,” says McKenzie in his office, nearly 20 blocks from the St. Regis. “You want to make people look but not stare. It’s not the Washington Monument. And it’s not Las Vegas either.”

Showcasing without showing off has been McKenzie’s mantra during his 30-plus years as a designer for T. Kondos Associates, a architectural lighting design firm which has created lighting for everything from the 101-story Taipei Financial Center to Arena Corinthians, the new World Cup soccer stadium in Brazil. He’s aimed for subtle theatricality whether lighting landscapes for shopping centers or icons in a cathedral. His mission is to make people feel better in buildings that look better, to not only illuminate but enlighten. Continue reading


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Editorial Octogenarian

Beacon1

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By Andrew M. Seaman ’10

Wilkes became its own institution on a cloudy June day in 1947. On the day that would be remembered as Charter Day, President Eugene S. Farley, who was grasping a banner-wrapped and flower-flanked podium, welcomed a crowd of people who gathered near Chase Hall. The school’s chorus erupted in Mozart’s “Ave Verum” as the clouds parted.

There is no sign or marker to commemorate the event or inform passersby about its specifics. At many other institutions, the details of the historic moment when Bucknell University Junior College became chartered as Wilkes College might be forgotten. At Wilkes, however, historic moments are photographed, written about, analyzed and archived in the pages of the school newspaper.

This year marks the 80th anniversary of the publishing of the first issue of Bucknell University Junior College’s student newspaper – The Bison Stampede, the publication that today is The Beacon. In those eight decades, the newspaper has chronicled current events, campus events, student concerns and campus controversies.

Many of the students who spent part of their academic careers reporting, writing and editing for the paper look back on that time as a period when they gained invaluable career skills and made lifelong friends. Continue reading


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WCLH: THE VOICE OF WILKES FOR 42 YEARS

“This is WCLH FM in Wilkes-Barre, Pennsylvania,” said student disc jockey Dave Bickel as Wilkes University’s radio station began its first broadcast at 6 p.m. Sunday, Feb. 6, 1972. Standing near Bickel, a history major from Plymouth, Pa., were Francis J. Michelini, University president, faculty advisors Harold Cox and James Berg, and station manager John Margo.

The listening audience, according to university archives, included 200 people, although the station had the capacity to reach nearly 700,000 people through a transmitting antenna located four miles south on Penobscot Knob in Hanover Township. The antenna transmitted from WCLH’s control room at 175 watts.

The Beacon served as the eyes of the campus,” says Brad Kinney, Wilkes professor emeritus of communications and director of broadcast services from 1979 until 1990. “WCLH served as its voice.” Continue reading


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Sportacular

Wilkes University Athletics Hall of Fame Inductees Honored for Winning Ways 

The latest group of alumni inducted into the University’s Athletics Hall of Fame was honored on Jan. 25 during a special half-time ceremony at a Colonels basketball game. 

patty_davisPatricia Davis Gaboric ’67

Field Hockey/Women’s Basketball

A four-year letter winner in field hockey and basketball, Gaboric earned numerous individual awards for her play on the field and court during her time at Wilkes. She was named the Wilkes Field Hockey Player of the Year in 1963 as a freshman while garnering Wilkes Player of the Year honors in basketball in 1965 as a junior. As a sophomore in 1964, Gaboric earned Wilkes Athlete of the Year and Beacon Athlete of the Year honors. She also served as the president of the Letterwomen’s Club from 1965 through 1966, earning the letterwomen’s award in her first year as head of the club. Continue reading

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