S: A Tribute to Fred Siegel
BC: “Every time you see me coming remember: number of hours in the week.” --Fred Siegel
FC: "You can just call me the 168 hour guy." | "Time management is the key to your success." | Class = 15-18 hours... Sleep = 50 hours... 100 hours are yours! There's no one here who can tell you how to use those hours." | “A number that very few people think about...a convenient number." | A Tribute to Fred Siegel | "Who knows how much 24 times 7 is?"
1: 123,984 Total Hours in the GW Community -29,520 Work Week Hours -5,700 Hours of Sleep 88,764 Hours Remaining... that really made the difference. Here is a thank you from just a handful of those whose lives you have touched. | Fred Siegel's Hours
3: Go west young man. | Fred you helped to make my 19 years as president of GW feel like 25. Go with God old pal. Don't be a stranger. Now that you are a big shot remember to nurture those who work for you. Bring some youngster along and be sure to keep telling Trachtenberg stories. Remember we know where you live.
4: It has been my honor to have Fred Siegel as a supervisor, a mentor and, above all, a friend, for the past 20 years. Throughout that time he has been an invaluable source of guidance, motivation, direction, opportunities, reassurance, and so much more, all of which has shaped who I am as a professional and a person today and will shape who I am going forward. While I will miss seeing him at GW on a daily basis, I am gratified by the knowledge that he will just be a phone call, e-mail, or even a plane ride away whenever I need him, as he will be for all at GW, Delaware, and elsewhere who have been fortunate to be associated with him in some way. -Robert Snyder
5: I have known Fred for more than two decades. In fact it seems that I have known him all my life! His friendship is that important to me. I have known him in my capacity as an alum, a GW Board Trustee, a colleague at the University, father of a GW student, and as a friend. That word “friend” encompasses enormous emotion. Fred cares deeply about people and every one he touches is better for that moment. Whether it is giving advice, as he did to my son, or just listening, Fred is open to all those around him. In a world and in an institution like this University that special quality is all too often missing and sadly so. I will miss Fred immensely --- the chance to talk, to confide, to get a good steer! I will miss the warmth and cheer and smile --- wherever he goes. This University will miss him and not be the better for his departure. I wish Fred the very best for he deserves the very best. A friend he will always be. Skip Gnehm | Yo, Fred! It was such a pleasure to work with you at B.U. on the Potomac! All best wishes for your success in California. Cheers, Jill
6: “Fred’s Rules of Life” – Your Being a Great Teacher and Mentor for Me In 1861, when Lincoln was preparing to depart Springfield, Illinois, his home for several decades, for Washington, D.C. to become the 16th President, he was filled with some trepidation and made the following remarks to a crowd of friends and neighbors assembled outside of his home: “My friends, no one, not in my situation, can appreciate my feeling of sadness at this parting. To this place, and the kindness of these people, I owe everything.” Two-hundred fifty years later, Fred, your leaving GW for Claremont also fills many of us with sadness. Long after you depart Washington, D.C., I’ll long remember your kindness to me personally and how much I owe to you professionally. In particular, I will always recall “Fred’s rules,” those valuable nuggets of wisdom imparted during the countless senior staff meetings, the times we met as mentor/mentee or supervisor/supervisee, and the informal meetings in our offices or the 403 hallway when we discussed last night’s baseball or football game or whatever was on CNN at the moment. Inherent in “Fred’s rules” are strategies to navigate rocky university political waters, handle daunting supervisory situations, and decide when to get your hands dirty (“right versus right” decisions). There were also, and much more significantly, some great life lessons you taught me during our conversations about our families. Based on your experience with Emily, lessons on how to help Julia, Drew, and Camille grow up to be successful individuals; how to help my kids, more importantly, become good people; how to be a supportive colleague; how to be an effective mentor for students and colleagues; how to be an able manager; more importantly, how to be an impactful leader and humane person. Over the year and half that we worked together, I was fortunate to have a series of meaningful, illuminating conversations with you. Above all, you have been an influential teacher and coach for me. Equally willing to provide feedback on what I did well and what I could do better, your goal was to make me a better staff member, leader, and person. Whether it was encouraging me to read Defining Moments or the Illiad or talking through a tricky work situation, I learned more in these 18 months than I did in all of my time enrolled in GW’s higher education administration doctoral program. I will always value the lessons you have taught me in the seven or so years we have worked in SASS. You will be greatly missed – you have made GW and SASS a much better place for always being there for me, GW students, GW parents, and countless colleagues. I wish you the best with your new position at Claremont and look forward to having many conversations with you after your departure. I am sure there will be a multitude of emails and phone calls between us whenever the Red Sox and Yankees meet on Yawkey Way or 161st Street. Like they said in Boston after “The Kid” hung up his spikes on September 28, 1960, there will never be anyone as good as Fred Siegel “coming to the plate” to support students and colleagues at GW. Thank you, Andy
8: It is said that one’s college years are their most formative. If that is truly the case, then Frederic Siegel has in-part, made the person I am today. I have known Dean Siegel since the summer of 2003, when I was beginning my freshman year at GW and Fred was returning to GW take the role of Dean of Freshmen. I worked for Fred in several capacities from the fall of 2004 when I was selected as a member of the Colonial Cabinet to the Summer of 2011 when I finished my tenure at GW working for Fred as an executive assistant. Throughout those seven years Fred Siegel helped shape me as an individual. He taught me the importance of hard work, customer service, and institutional loyalty. These are now the cornerstones of my work ethic that I successfully apply everyday to my profession. Fred also taught me the values embodied by a good leader and the significance of working as a team toward a common professional goal. On a more personal level, throughout the years “Dean Siegel” has always been a constant source of encouragement and counsel. He has believed in me when others did not and stood up for me when no one else would. Fred has been a teacher, a colleague, a mentor, and above all a friend. I owe him a debt that I may never be able to repay. I can only hope to one day pay the service forward. All I can say to him is thank you. John Och | Dear Fred, Congratulations on your new position at Claremont Graduate University! The students, staff and faculty, and university community are so lucky to have you join them. You bring a wealth of unique knowledge and experience that remains invaluable. As I alluded in my sincere Service Excellence nomination, I have never met a higher education administrator, or individual for that matter, that can think as critically and creatively as you. I admired you from the moment I first saw you shake hands and speak with almost every student with whom you came in to contact. For the past year and a half, I have had the pleasure of learning from you each and everyday. You carefully listen to each person who comes to speak with you. You quickly think through situations to offer advice and guidance that proves helpful when navigating any situation. You see the best in everyone with whom you interact. Not only have you given me all of these gifts, but you believe in me to succeed with projects and responsibilities, my education and professional relationships at GW, and my future career as a higher education administrator. I often think that I neglected to learn as much from you as I could and to have conversations with you about your experiences, thoughts, and opinions. However, I hope that our relationship can continue to grow. If you need anything at GW, you know where to find me :), and if I have questions or need your sage advice, I will be sure to contact you! Best wishes for a very successful transition. Fondly, Michelle Fox
10: Dear Fred, From freshman year until senior, you have continuously stood as an influential figure both in my life and in those around me. Living across from the infamous Thurston Hall you were known as the 'brave dean'; forever to be a mystery as to how you could have lived on the same block as arguably the rowdiest dorm in the country. Yet, as the weeks passed we began to see that your investment did not stop merely at your place of residence but extended into the heart of Thurston as you provided endless support, mentorship, insight and encouragement for first year men and women. Around you still during my time as a Colonial Cabinet member and now in the office, I see that you have not only continued such a legacy with the younger classes but have kept formidable relationships even with students from my year. My main joy working in the office is just that: the dedication to the students and passion for higher education held by each member of the office (and hey, I eat excess Starburst and tootsie rolls--who could dislike a job like that). Without people like you my university experience, my education and my unwavering love for this school would have been forever changed. You will be sorely missed. Good luck in your future endeavors and tell those California kids to send us some sunshine. Kind Regards, Juliayn R. Lake
11: Fred, It has been a pleasure getting the opportunity to work for you the past few months. I always look forward to hearing you perspective on education. Your insight is invaluable advice for how a student can get the most out of any experience. Simply hearing your opinions on humanities classes gave me a greater appreciation for my education. I think this fusion between optimism and wisdom has made you such a great mentor for all of your students. I wish you the best in all of your endeavors. I am extremely grateful that you been an influential member of the community. All the best, Isaac G. | Dear Dean Siegel, Over the last three and half years I have tried many times to thank you for all that you have done for me and each time you have told me that I am responsible for my own success. I want you to know that while I agree with you, your support has been invaluable and has given me the confidence to pursue so many great opportunities. I have done my best to orient my time at GW around the 168 hours discussion you gave at CI. My GW experience has been greatly enhanced by trying to fill my other 100 hours with great jobs, internships, and events. Your advice throughout my tenure at the university has helped me to focus on what is important and guide me to new opportunities. Congratulations on your new job at Claremont Graduate University. I’m glad that you will be heading to California where it will be easy for me to visit. Please keep in touch as you get started and I will be sure to visit you the next time I am in southern California. Thank you again for all that you have done to make my experience truly great. Sincerely, John Wilson
12: Though it is exciting for Fred to take on new adventures in his career, the George Washington community is losing a tremendous administrator, colleague, and mentor. His willingness to assist and problem solve to create a win-win situation has been a great asset to students and staff. Most importantly, Fred's straight-forward feedback and supportive gestures to get you pointed in the right direction were the characteristics that made him a great mentor to the many people he worked with at the university. I wish him the best in his upcoming journey! -LeNaya Hezel | I was sad to hear of Fred's departure from GW, but I am very happy and excited for his new adventure in Southern California. Fred will truly be missed as amazing administrator, colleague, and friend to many. I have truly benefited from and appreciated Fred's much needed support and advice in the past year and a half I have worked with him. Fred has been an excellent problem solver and has also served as a great role model for all of us in the VP SASS office. Fred's constant words of wisdom, common sense in a sometimes uncommon higher ed world, and door locking will go a long way in my book. Go Yankees!!!! -Mary Waring
16: Fred, Congratulations on your new position. Also, I want to congratulate Claremont Graduate University in Claremont, California for selecting an outstanding leader with impeccable qualities. He has been a professional of the highest integrity and honesty while working hard to always find a better way to achieve a goal. During his tenure at The George Washington University, students knew they had a friend, because he would stop to talk to students to ensure that they were adjusting well to their environment. He always took time out of his busy schedule to attend luncheons and award ceremonies of staff under his leadership. There is sadness surrounding our office on the departure of Fred because he has been a committed and respected friend, mentor, colleague and leader. He has been a loyal and trusted member of the Executive Branch at GW. Fred, you will be missed; I wish you much success in your new job. Best regards, Annie E. Hill Sr. International Student & Scholar Advisor International Services Office | A Tribute to Fred Siegel A gentleman and a scholar who truly cares, you have made priceless contributions to the GW community. You are well known as a dedicated educator with a warm, nurturing style that inspires the best in others. Those who work closely with you realize the great pleasure you take in giving unselfish help to students, faculty, and staff in need of support. You regularly put the needs of others ahead of your own. Its been a privilege to work with you, Fred. You will be deeply missed. At the same time, I wish you great success and happiness in your new endeavors. My best wishes to you and your family, -Susan D’Amico
17: Fred (Dean) Siegel Has been a mentor, confidant and colleague to me over the last seven years. I will always remember him as the Dean on Mt. Vernon's campus that had the impeccable memory and wherewithal to remember literally hundreds if not thousands of students names. This skill alone was remarkable, and showed his commitment to making life at GW for students from all over a comfortable, and homey type experience. Dean Siegel will be missed. His knack for sports competition, good natured ribbing and people of all backgrounds in general is second to none and I will surely miss him. I wish him all the luck in his future endeavors, and he knows I will be in touch!!! Charles Basden
18: I am overcome with gratitude when I think about the guidance and insight I've gained as a direct result of working with you. As a new professional at GW I often felt overwhelmed. You recognized my desire to understand and learn more and I am grateful for your keen awareness and care. I learned a great deal about what it means to be an advocate and how to really listen to those around me. Thank you for the opportunity to work with and learn from you. I wish you all the best in California! - Kelly Carder | Dean Siegel, Congratulations on the new job!! For me, GW and your presence have always been synonymous. From my first day of work at The Vern, you have made me feel a welcome member of the GW family. Your support and kindness through the past few years have meant so much and kept me going when times got tough. Thank you so much for believing in me and my future. I will miss you very, very much. Lindsay Hill PS: You better be coming back for the next Science Olympiad!! | Thanks, Fred, for your leadership. I can truly say I learned a lot from our work together. I learned to dream big, to sometimes act and then ask forgiveness and to continue to know that the Beautiful Mount Vernon Campus is just that, beautiful!!! I wish your future colleagues as much success working with you as I have had. Shelly Heller
19: I first met Dean Siegel while living on the Vern as a first year student in 2005. I thought it was "really cool" that there was an administrator just for freshmen who lived across the street from where I lived, played soccer and took classes. I never actually made an appointment to visit with him, but his presence on campus was tangible, and I felt like I had an ally if I ever needed one. It turns out I did need his help when there appeared to be a housekeeping issue in Somers and UPD got involved. Looking back, I have no idea why my roommates and I thought Fred should handle a case concerning missing bathroom supplies. But he graciously supported us through the whole process and never once made us feel like we were making a ridiculous request. Ever since then, I had complete respect for who he was and the impact he had on students. I made especially sure to read all the freshman letters he sent out with snippets of wisdom and reminders to stay focused. During the rest of my undergraduate years, he would be sure to stop and say hello when we passed by on the street. Still to this day I can't fathom how he remembers so many names and faces year after year. But that's the type of person he is - he genuinely cares about people and does everything in his power to encourage others. The early years of my acquaintance with Fred were memorable, but it wasn't until I took a position in his office as a Graduate Apprentice in 2009 that I really understood him - his values, his passions and his heart. I was so warmly welcomed on to his staff that it almost took my breath away. Even as a part-time employee, I felt like a valuable and respected member of the team. The year was busy and held a lot of changes, including the departure of Robert, one of Fred's oldest friends and trusted colleagues. Katie and I didn't know what was going to happen once our office suddenly became just the two of us and Fred. But he promised that the changes were good challenges - opportunities for us to step up, learn and make a difference. So we kept on going, and soon our new responsibilities and schedules became routine. We managed to pull off a successful sequence of events during Thomas Friedman's visit to campus and kept the traditional Dean of Freshmen events going strong. Fred was always there to encourage us, challenge us and remind us that life isn't always about work. I think one of the most striking things about getting to know Fred was seeing how much he supported me personally, not just as an employee or a student. I felt part of a special type of family. Sure Fred cared about the work I did as his employee, but he cared more about my life, my family and my dreams. The people who really know him quickly realize that his life is not motivated by a job or a sense of duty. What you see is what is really there. He is truly a compassionate, caring, hard-working and wise man who has touched the lives of so many. Fred, thank you for everything. I will never forget my time with you or the lessons you taught me. I know you don't really like being described with compliments and flattering words, but tough luck. They're true. You are an amazing boss, mentor and friend. I'll miss you, but I hope to have a full report on Emily's soccer career :) Best of luck in your next life endeavor! Brooke DeLancey
20: Fred— When Andy and Michelle sent out their note soliciting these contributions to their project for you, there were two memories which immediately came to mind. My first year at GW, I was working in a part-time graduate role, working for Matthew and Fay. I thought I was such hot shit. My first job out of college, technically only part-time, and already being trusted to do well, whatever it was I thought I was doing that day. I was working overtime, doing big stuff, meeting with big people, getting stuff done, being a pro – I even remember receiving compliments from new colleagues, some from outside the University, about how professional they thought I was – but had not, apparently, yet figured out quite how to present myself in some ways. I remember rushing back from a meeting with the folks in Facilities one day and running into you and Robert on the Quad; after he inquired about the substance of the conversation itself, you began asking about how I’d interacted with the other people in the meeting, pressing me on whether I thought it had gone well and whether they’d taken it seriously. In my blind confidence, I had no idea what you were getting at, even as you inched closer until you stuck a finger in my belt loop, leaned in, and growled “if you ever want people to take you seriously, you damn well better start learning to tuck in your shirt.” Even if it took me a while after that to get out and buy some more presentable dress clothing – something I’m glad you felt comfortable continuing to tease me about throughout my time at GW – it’ll be a long time ‘til I forget the lesson of that day. Years later, during what would be my last year at GW, we had the big blizzard that shut down most of DC – though, as I recall we were all careful to put it, only cancelled classes and closed offices at GW without “shutting down” the campus, lest anyone worry about the students living on campus. Toward the end of the week period that offices were closed, I made the decision to walk into work to see how things were – I had wound up being the campus’s representative on the emergency management conference calls throughout the week and having to answer questions about both The Vern Express and all other campus operations, and, although we’d kept the Express running, I wanted to be able to report in more authoritatively. As I got into Foggy Bottom and was chatting with the UPD officers I ran into, you called asking for an update and when I explained that I’d just reached campus and was on my way to the office, I was taken aback by what sounded like anger in your response. When we met in the office a short while later, I explained that I’d been used to working for Robert ‘til then (this was only shortly after he’d departed for the President’s office) and was used to a “if you don’t hear not to come in, you better come in” arrangement. If there had been anger in your voice earlier, it had turned to some sort of bemusement by now, as I believe you called me “dumb” for having trudged in through the snow, and continued to make fun of me for it over the months to come. What has particularly stuck with me since that day, though, was the very honest conversation we had in the office next. I don’t know if you remember it anymore, but you complimented some of my efforts and then passed along some rather sharp criticism that tied back to how I had been presenting myself and how others were perceiving my work; after offering some outside perspective, you essentially told me to get my shit together and clean up any misunderstandings there might’ve been, then left for the day. Again, it’s a lesson I’ve attempted to hold onto since and, some days more successfully than others, have continued to carry with me. I guess what I should be saying here is thank you. Whether it was intentional on your part or not, whether you knew you were doing it or not, the example you set and the lessons you offered left an indelible mark on me. Whether I was working for you or simply within a system and culture that you’d helped create, and whether by virtue of your professional example or the personal relationships you developed with those around you, the time I spent at GW and Mount Vernon helped to both frame my ideas of professional expectations and, frankly, set an impossibly high bar for both performance and meaningful results that has followed – and I expect will continue to follow – me since. So, thank you. Here’s hoping our paths cross again someday. I’ve got my fingers crossed. -Elan
21: Fred, Though I am excited for you to be moving to California and starting a new position, I am also incredibly sad that GW and DC will no longer include your presence. I could not have asked for a better first professional position after graduate school. I absolutely loved working on the Mount Vernon Campus, and am thankful to have worked with you. You were an inspiring role model; dedicated to your work, advancing the Vern, but never too busy to help a student (or staff member) with a problem. You truly demonstrated what it means to be a student advocate. I'll never forget the first time we met. It was during my interview day while I was meeting with Robert, he brought me next door to your office. I was so nervous; meeting with you wasn't on my schedule, but I thought, "this has to be a good sign, right?" I felt so comfortable talking to you, and our conversation only confirmed what I already knew, GWMVC was a place I wanted to be. We shared A LOT of good memories: sheep on the Vern, the first Fountain Fling when Josh Ritter ran from Lloyd Gym to the fountain to play one last song, colossal amounts of Chinese food, Fred's Diner, dressing up for Halloween as Dr. Seuss characters and Muppets, your kind hospitality during the holidays, four-footed friends, Science Olympiad, Friday grilling on the Webb patio, and so many more. I can't even begin to describe what I've learned from you. A large part of my professional identity was developed during the time I worked for you, and I am grateful for your leadership, support, wisdom, and insight. Thank you for everything you've done for me and thank you even more for what you've done for GW and the Mount Vernon Campus. Your legacy will be felt for many years to come on campus, and your presence definitely missed. I wish you all the best. Ashley Venneman
22: Fred, It was always good to see your smiling face at our Mount Vernon athletics events! Also, Cyndie, Emily and the dog were often “ in tow" over the past several years. Thanks so much for your support of Athletics and Recreation and best wishes for a wonderful new adventure in Claremont! We will miss you and your family at GW. Sincerely, Mary Jo Warner | Fred, Thank you for being such a great leader for GW. I learned a tremendous amount from you and your leadership that has benefited me greatly. I wish you well and great success in your future. I also wish great health and happiness for your family. Kind Regards, Jason Wilson
23: Fred, To the consummate mentor, role model and friend- a resounding THANK YOU. You have taught me some of the most valuable lessons and helped to guide me along my own career path. I am forever indebted to you for caring enough to listen to my thoughts, assisting me in thinking critically and challenging me to take a step outside the box. I look forward to buying you dinner and hope that it is sooner than later...possibly even on the left coast. Much love and appreciation, Tanya
24: I won't say goodbye, because we all know you're not getting rid of me just because you're moving across the country! I have looked up to you for the duration of my professional career as a mentor and model professional. Your advice has carried me through tough times in more instances than I can count. I've always felt like you trusted my opinion and intellect, and that you valued my character in times where the comfort of knowing those things was somewhat uncommon in my life. I'm grateful to have been in the presence of someone who got far in his career by trusting people, by respecting others no matter what their job title or position in work and life, and by knowing what comes first ALWAYS is family- NOT work. These are ideals that have been challenged for me, and will continue to be challenged... Yet I rely on your example to know there are certain things that I won't compromise. I appreciate you for how sure I am about those things. I've written too much already, but could write a small novel to address all that I've learned from being around you the last 14 years. Thanks for spending time on me. I promise that it will always be time well-spent for you! Much thanks and love- Renee | Eighteen years ago, Fred hired me for my first position at GW as an Assistant Director in the Office of Admissions. His daughter Emily was a just a toddler back then! When I took the job I had no idea that it would lead to a wonderful career in Admissions at GW for me. Based on my resume, Fred noticed that I had an interest in 'things international.' During my interview, Fred asked me if I would be willing to travel internationally someday as part of the job. I wasn't sure if he was really serious about the travel at the time, but eventually I visited 25 countries recruiting for GW. What an incredible opportunity he created for me to experience the world! Over the years, Fred has seen me grow and change both professionally and personally. I am grateful for his belief in my abilities, his support of my efforts, and his kindness during tough times in life. So thank you, Fred, for having faith in a young '20-something' just starting out in higher education! Best wishes to you as you start your next chapter in California! Warmly, Touran | “We are all committed to making sure that freshman year is complete and balanced.”
25: Dear Fred, When the call went out to add items to this scrapbook, I began to think about all that I have learned from you, over the short time I have been able to work with you! You have been someone I could confide in, someone to gain insight from and confer with on ideas, and you have been a mentor to me. I have valued all of our conversations and I have learned much from you! This is one of the many things, I have learned from you, as I continue to develop my own professional style: Most people, with whom I have worked in the field, state that as you move up in position you will have less and less direct student contact and that your opportunity to make a difference in the lives of students is on a macro-scale, and not for each individual. You have taught me that as a Student Affairs professional it does not have to be that way. Through watching you, I have learned that you can affect the lives of students on a macro-scale, WITHOUT forgetting that each student is an individual. In fact, you have taught me that you should not try to affect the lives of students on a macro-scale, if you forget that each student is an individual. I went into this field, because I enjoyed helping individual students. Thank you for helping me realize that to increase my level of responsibility, it does not mean that I need to lose my passion for helping the individual person. Fred, you will be missed! -Andrew Goretsky | Dear Fred, My sincerest congratulations on your new position at Claremont Graduate University! I am so pleased for you and having visited very briefly that part of California, am envious about this 'idyllic' environment you will have the opportunity to work and live in. On a much more serious note, thank you so much for all your wonderful contributions to GW! They have made a significant impact and please know you have left a legacy. In particular I have appreciated your support of the Career Center and (where I really came to appreciate your influence) your leadership on the CI Planning Team. You have wonderfully mentored members of my staff and one memory of which I am most fond is your support of my staff members in conducting mini resume workshops on the Vern Express! That was a hoot and gave us lots of giggles! May your success continue to be far and wide and may you be happy, wealthy and wise. Fond Regards, Marva
26: The students who lived on the Mt. Vernon campus always had a memory to share of a great experience they had when Fred and Cyndie opened their home for student gatherings. The affection and respect shown to him has imbued in me a determination to always be open and receptive to students concerns and needs. His contributions to GW are incalculable and his wise counsel and authentic caring will go on to affect generations of student’s lives. | "Some Reflections on Fred Siegel" By Dick Golden | I first became aware of Fred’s impact on GWU students before I met him. During the first Freshmen Convocation I attended, Fred was introduced and the roar of approval and enthusiasm that came out of the audience was something you usually hear reserved for rock or sports stars. Over the last six years I’ve had the pleasure to have many conversations with Fred and always have been impressed with his keen intellect, vast curiosity, sharp wit, and most of all, his deep humanity. Many of our conversations have taken place as we walked through the campus and I don’t think we ever could talk for more than 3 minutes at a time before being interrupted by a student who just wanted to say hello to Fred and to extend best wishes to him.
27: November 7, 2011 Dear Fred: It has been many years that we have known each other, and have experienced the wonderful things that GW has had to offer, including it’s community of students, administrators, faculty, alumni, family and friends. You have been an integral part of that community and you have left an indelible mark to have made GW a better place through all of your efforts and work over the years. I just want to mention a few things that have brought us together over the years and have made us life long friends and colleagues. I want to keep this short, so here goes: Ron Howard and our mutual relationship with Ron and the many great things he taught all of us; The Admissions Office and your amazing work in enrollment management! You even took the time to read some of my recommendation letters for students that I interviewed! Keeping an eye out for my kids, Stephen, Robby and Josh when they were at GW! Keeping an eye out for Jason Lifton! The various conversations we have had over the years concerning some students who found themselves in some disciplinary action, and how to advise and consult with parents. Our mutual love of baseball, even though we have routed for the arch rivals, Boston Red Sox for you, and the New York Yankees for me! The tickets I was able to give you for the Boston -- Yankees game in the old Yankee Stadium, when you had the opportunity to take your father for his first visit to Yankee stadium, I know was a priceless treasure that you will always have! The fun we have had together knowing each other over the years. Our mutual friend, Skip Gnehm. Fred, Leslie and I wish Cyndie and you all best of luck and success in your new position at Claremont Graduate University in Claremont, California. I know that our paths will continue to cross, and maybe one day we’ll get to go together to a Dodgers - Yankee game in LA! Best of luck and all best wishes, Gary and Leslie Granoff
28: Fred: First, and foremost, it has been a great privilege to have known you and worked with you over the many years that our time at GW overlapped. This means, of course, that we had two overlaps, each of which spelled different but special interactions for me with you. The first overlap occurred during the period you were responsible for undergraduate admissions and I was in the Physics Department as a faculty member and eventually as Department Chair. You impressed me from the beginning as someone with whom I could interact and accomplish things. This turned out to be right on target as illustrated when I asked you whether it was possible to do something about recruiting science students to GW, in particular, students who might end up majoring in physics. You immediately went into action and set up a few scholarships specifically for this purpose, which looking back were the beginning of a stumulus in this realm that remains to this day. Bravo for taking this brave and decisive action in a climate that was not slanted towards science at all. Our second overlap was much more extensive and much more recent than the first. It was special in that you and I interacted on a regular basis through meetings that consisted of open and thorough discussions of the matters at hand. A lot of what we discussed was driven by your role as Dean of Freshmen but also through your efforts to just generally make GW a better place for undergraduates to study and become mature adults. I will long remember our discussions about the books students should be reading prior to coming to GW, about bringing and then making real the Science Olympiad at GW, about the differences in recruiting graduate students and undergraduate students, etc. Moreover, I shall always remember our deep personal discussions about several topics. What was special about all these exchanges was the transparency and forthrightness of the give and take. You always gave me things to think about. You have accomplished much at GW and you helped me a great deal in doing my job as Chief Academic Officer. For the latter, I thank you very much. For the former, we are all grateful and shall long remember what you contributed to GW. My hat is off to you in your new appointment -- afterall, you now have this new chance to return to recruiting graduate students to a very fine graduate institution. I wish you nothing but great success in this new undertaking and hope that you and Cindy enjoy living on the West Coast. Above all, enjoy each day. My very best to you, Don Lehman
29: Fred is the friendliest human being I ever met. His curiosity about everyone he encounters always evolves into a funny comment that lights up the room. I first met Fred along the sidelines of the soccer fields where his daughter Emily and my daughter Claire played on the same travel team. By the time each game was over, Fred had spoken with every parent on the sideline and offered some witty positive comment about the game, or the opposing team or the Boston Red Sox or the Patriots. He will be missed by everyone who encountered him. -Mike Shanahan, Assistant Director and Assistant Professor in the School of Media and Public Affairs at GW.
30: What messages do you have for the incoming class? | "Become engaged with everything the university has to offer as quickly as possible." | "Connect with the opportunities in Washington, D.C." | “ Be patient with yourselves...everyone will catch their rhythm in their own way.” | "Get to know the university first and then explore D.C."
31: Fred, Thank you very much for all you that have done for me. You have been an excellent mentor and a fantastic friend to me throughout our relationship. I appreciate everything I have learned from you and will always remember the lessons you've taught me. You have certainly enhanced my experience at GW and for that I am grateful. I look forward to keeping in touch and sharing my experiences while continuing to learn from you. "Speak truth to power..." Sam Horowitz | Dear Dean Siegel, You have been an incredible mentor these past few years. I truly appreciate the time you spent with me. You have taught me many priceless tools for life as well as what it means to be leader and the responsibility it entails. I will always remember and utilize these lessons. I look forward to seeing you in Coronado one day. Good luck, Joshua Bochner | “I have committed myself to meeting at least 1,000 of you.”
32: Dean Siegel, I cannot adequately express in words how thankful I am to have met you at GW (even before via email with regards to the freshmen essay contest!). There were times when I was upset about various disappointments that you know about, but your persistent encouragement really pushed me through to where I am now. I think that I have met with you at least once each semester not always to voice concern, but also to express improvement and contentment. I can truly say that you have been my best mentor through the first couple of years. I hope that we will stay in touch through my graduation from GWU and beyond. Warmly, Rebekah Yurco
33: Dear Dean Siegel, From the very first day I started working in the Dean of Freshmen Office two years ago as a Freshmen on the Vern to today, as a Junior studying abroad in South Africa, I feel that I can genuinely say that you have been one of the biggest influences on my life as an undergraduate student at The George Washington University. It is with great enthusiasm that I congratulate you on your new position as Vice Provost at the Claremont Graduate University and it is with great joy that I wish you best of luck in your future endeavors. However, I am nonetheless sad to see you leave GWU. You have been a guiding voice, a mentor, a challenger, and one of my greatest supporters here at GWU. Thank you so much for all of the help you have offered me in the past and for the guidance and professional development that you have fostered for countless other GWU students. You are and always have been one of the most approachable GWU administrators that I have ever met and one of the most, if not the most popular administrator as well. You were a phenomenal Dean of Freshmen and I do not know of any other student who did not find your guidance and support extremely helpful. College can be a very challenging environment for many people but with administrators like you, I think GWU has always succeeded in making its students feel connected to the University as a whole. Thank you so much for your willingness to help and your commitment to serve. I hope that we can keep in touch and I believe that the students at the Claremont Graduate University are incredibly lucky and blessed to have you on board. We here at GWU will never forget you! Thank you! Best, Aly Azhar | Dear Dean Siegel (You will always be Dean Siegel to me)- Let me start by saying congratulations on your new position! Claremont is extremely lucky to have you, and I know you’re going to do great things there. It doesn’t seem that long ago (8 years), we both started that fall on Mount Vernon; me as a freshman, and you as the Dean. Throughout these 8 years you have given me constant support and guidance. I have no doubt, that you have had an impact on my experience at GW. I appreciate everything you’ve done, not only for me, but also for the University. GW will not be the same without you. I wish you all the best in your new position! Good luck, and best wishes! Aloha, Ariz Matute
34: I have been very lucky to know Fred since my freshman year. I lived on the Vern and he was my Dean of Freshmen. Initially, I was his "international engineering friend" and I saw him sporadically. It was during my second year that I reached out to him, after I had some major difficulties in my life, and my academics. His compassion and receptiveness astounded me. He actually took the time to talk to me, and got to know me personally. When I talked about how great a place GW is, I always recounted my experience with 'Dean' Siegel during these troubled times. When he moved down to the Foggy Bottom campus, somehow we ran into each other and resumed having conversations. Although, I know he would have done the same for any student, I have always felt honored by the fact that Fred made time for me, if just to talk and see how things were going. Through many discussions, I have learnt much from him and will miss the treasure-trove of wisdom that I have had access to. Last Fall [September 2010], a large, rare tumor was discovered in my esophagus. Over the following year, I had to drop all my courses for one semester, my family and financial situation deteriorated rapidly, I was treated with high-dose steroids, then underwent 5 weeks of radiation and finally, when both those failed, underwent a 10 hour surgery, followed by 3 weeks in the hospital. Throughout this time, this veritable roller-coaster ride, Fred was there as a constant source of support, as a person who helped me get through the hardest challenges I have yet faced. As an international student, I did not have family here to support me through all these times, but have been lucky to have people like Fred help me get through it and to find the strength in myself to keep on trekking. When I talk about how great GW is now, I tell them about Fred as I know him now. Fred's advice, support and mentorship have made me a stronger person in many aspects. I know that I am not the only one who has been touched by his sincere interest and compassion. Fred has left a mark on my life, and I will miss him dearly. I wish him and his family the very best. Best Regards, Sibel Ahmed Shehzad Mufti
35: When we first arrived at GW and decided to establish a chapter of Camp Kesem, we were completely clueless as to how to proceed. Looking for guidance, we turned to our Dean of Freshmen despite not knowing who he was or whether he might actually be helpful. We are not only thrilled that you turned out to be such an instrumental reason for Camp Kesem GW's initial success, but also that you have chosen to stay with us and continue to support us long after we were freshmen. Your kindness, generosity and willingness to help are major reasons for camp’s success, as well as our personal growth as members of the GW community. We wish you the best of luck in California! You will always be a part of the Camp Kesem family. -- Allie Rubin, Sarah Leibach, Christopher MacDonald, and Calder Stembel aka Allie-Oop, Pancake, Skippy, and Scuba Steve (GWU '11)