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Skidmore College
Skidmore Retirees

Retiree Initiative Planning Group (RIPG)

The Retiree Initiative Planning Group (RIPG) is an informal group of volunteers devoted to fostering relations between the College and retirees in all employment categories.  The group keeps up communication, including this website, and helps to plan programs, events and activities for retirees.  An endowed fund to support these efforts, The Phyllis A. Roth Retiree Initiative Fund, was established in 2010 in honor of Phyllis Roth, Professor of English and former Dean of the Faculty, on the occasion of her retirement.  In June 2012 Skidmore College received a $100,000 grant from the American Council on Education and the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation for its innovative work in faculty retirement; the grant is intended to be used during a two year period on initiatives that support faculty transitions to retirement. RIPG advises the College on the use of both funds.

The Phyllis A. Roth Retiree Initiative Fund

Contributions to the The Phyllis A. Roth Retiree
Initiative Fund are always welcome!  Just
indicate "Roth Retiree Fund" when you make a
gift by any of the means described at the
Giving website.

Employee and Retiree Recognition May 2014
Dedication of the Phyllis A. Roth Memorial Garden,
May 20, 2014. (Photo by: Phil Scalia)

Employee and Retiree Recognition May 2014
Charles Joseph, Professor Emeritus of Music and
former Vice President for Academic Affairs, offers
words of appreciation before other speakers: Susan
Kress, Professor Emerita of English and former
VPAA; President Philip A. Glotzbach; and Ruthie
Holmes, daughter of Phyllis Roth. (Photo by Phil Scalia)

RIPG keeps in touch with retiree organizations at other colleges and universities through Skidmore’s membership in the Association of Retirement Organizations in Higher Education (AROHE).

From time to time, RIPG conducts surveys of Skidmore retirees to assess needs and interests.  The results of a survey conducted in the summer of 2012 are summarized here.

You don’t have to wait for a survey to share your thoughts!  RIPG welcomes ideas and participation from all retirees at any time.  To send suggestions or offer to help, email

Retirees currently serving on RIPG are:

  • Sharon Arpey, former Director in the Office of the Dean of Special Programs
  • Sue Bender, Professor Emerita of Anthropology and former Associate Dean of the Faculty
  • Liz Bourque, former Special Assistant to the President
  • Terry Diggory, Professor Emeritus of English
  • Gove Effinger, Professor Emeritus of Mathematics
  • Ann Henderson, former Registrar
  • Susan Kress, Professor Emerita of English and former Vice President for Academic Affairs
  • Lynne Gelber, Professor Emerita of Foreign Languages and Literatures
  • Anita Miczek, former Assistant to the Director of Sponsored Research
  • Betty O’Connor, former Associate Director Enterprise Systems
  • Andrea Wise, former Director of Campus and Media Relations
  • Joanna Zangrando, Professor Emerita of American Studies. 

In addition, coordination with Academic Affairs and Human Resources is maintained through the participation of the following liaisons:

  • Patricia Fehling, Associate Dean of the Faculty for Diversity and Faculty Affairs
  • Brianna Herman, HR Assistant
  • Laura Goodwin, Assistant Director for Benefits Administration