Arthur N. Applebee Celebration of Life

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Robert Bangert-Drowns
Dean, School of Education

Good afternoon, everyone.

I am Robert Bangert-Drowns, Dean of the School of Education at the University at Albany, one of the four Research Centers of the State University of New York (SUNY) system. In short, for the last seven years, I have been Arthur’s boss. But, honestly, no one could be Arthur’s boss; all of us in the School of Education were, in various ways, friends, colleagues, and students of Arthur Applebee. By his calm and gentle manner, his wisdom and good counsel, his unswerving commitment to scholarly excellence, and the power of his prolific intelligence, Arthur bettered our lives in the School and University, and bettered the lives of students and educators around the world.

Arthur Applebee has an extraordinary record of academic accomplishment. Countless students; 25 books and monographs; over 100 articles and other publications; leadership roles at all levels of education; editorial work; seminal texts in areas related to language, literacy, and learning; $27 million dollars in external funding; designation as a SUNY Distinguished Professor—the highest academic rank one can achieve in the SUNY system; designation as a Fellow of the American Educational Research Association—a highly selective honor by the premiere association for educational researchers in the world. But here I’d like to offer more personal portraits of Arthur from three periods of time, snapshots that mark how my relationship with him changed over the years.

Arthur and I came to UAlbany at the same time, fall semester 1987. Looking back over these many years, if I were forced to use one word to describe Arthur, I would say “inscrutable.” I suppose it would be easier to just say “quiet,” but he had a profound, thoughtful, soft voice-and-silence that made you wonder—what is he thinking?

When I arrived at UAlbany in 1987, I was about a year out of graduate school at the University of Michigan, the dye still wet on my doctoral diploma. Arthur and Judith came as full professors to my department, and their reputations arrived with them. Honestly, as assistant professors, my newly hired colleagues and I were intimidated by these accomplished scholars. They were certainly cordial enough, but would they vote for us at tenure-time? I found it easier to start a friendship with Judith at first; she and I shared keen interests in aesthetic matters, particularly the performing arts, and we always had recommendations for or reports on concerts or artists. But, Arthur? Arthur was quiet, and his quiet left a lot of room for a nervous assistant professor to wonder what was he thinking.

Fast-forward about a decade. Arthur and Judith had rallied a number of UAlbany faculty members, and researchers from other institutions, to successfully attract federal funding for a national research center, the Center for English Learning and Achievement. Arthur had invited me to research some topic related to the work of the Center. I did a preliminary examination of published research and found there were enough studies to conduct a statistical literature review looking at the effects of writing on learning. Arthur and I were both excited about the prospects, and he engaged me in the Center’s work. He allowed me to work very independently; only occasionally would he visit my office to check how my work was progressing. He was still quiet, but I had tenure at this time, so I stopped wondering what he was thinking of me. He correctly anticipated some of the emerging results of my research, but it was the surprises he found really exciting. Yes, as he expected, writing seemed to help students learn the content they were writing about, but not so much because it helped them remember or organize the content better in their minds, but because it helped them reflect on what they knew already well and identify what needed additional special attention. He was delighted.

Later, Arthur re-engaged me in the Center to lead a group of researchers looking at the connection between literacy and technology. Is “reading” with computers the same as reading from books? Arthur asked me to take the lead with this group, even though some of the researchers had already begun their work. He never told me why he wanted me to be the leader. I was complimented, but puzzled, and Arthur was… inscrutable. Our group began a set of conversations trying to articulate what it meant to be literate in the information age, how is one literate with electronic literature. And as we puzzled through those questions we began to realize that there was no boundary to literacy, that every time people organize symbols and sounds to communicate meaning to others—through books, or movies, or dance, or music, or numbers—it was, in fact, a kind of literacy. And I came to realize something that Arthur already knew, how deeply intertwined were language, literacy, learning. He had very quietly hooked me.

Fast forward again, another decade… In February 2008, I became Dean of the UAlbany School of Education. The prior dean had left the School in good order, and I had been her Associate Dean; I felt confident that this task would not be too difficult. However, eight months later, in October, we were given the first of what was to be a series of drastic budget cuts, brought on by the Great Recession. Arthur was an essential member of the executive group of department chairs and Dean’s Office staff who helped me navigate the School through those financially perilous times. He was quiet—yes, often inscrutable—during those conversations of how to cut and where to invest, but when he spoke it was generous and wise, with care and careful thought. The challenges we faced then were historic and stressful, but his steady and deliberate manner was certainly a stabilizing force.

Arthur began then a habit of simply coming to visit me in my office—to see how I was doing, to bring a special request or a “heads up” of a potential problem, or to tell me of a new book or article, a conference presentation, or a trip. We both enjoyed these spontaneous visits. We often lingered, laughing over the humor we found in a given dilemma or new policy. Neither worried what the other was thinking; we were usually on the same page as we contemplated possible futures.

Our relationship had come a long way since 1987. I must say that I sometimes wondered why he smiled so broadly during our visits. Yes, I’m a joy to talk to, but sometimes there seemed a little extra twinkle in his eye, an unspoken depth to his dimple. I came to believe that the breadth of his smile was a sign of his gratitude, gratitude that he was on the other side of my desk and not sitting in the dean’s seat. But that little part of his smile remained—delightfully—inscrutable.

In times of adversity, confronting a foe or a loss, I’ve often recalled the expression, “The best revenge is living well.” Arthur’s passing is that kind of loss, but I know he would admonish us to live well. Live well, and write about it!

Janet Angelis
Director, Know Your Schools ~ for NY Kids

I first became acquainted with Arthur shortly before I met him. In preparing to come to Albany to interview with Judith and Arthur for a position in CELA, I asked a colleague back in Boston who had worked with them on a grant proposal what I should know about them. Of Arthur, he said something like, “He’ll be very quiet during a meeting, and when he does speak, he won’t use a lot of words but they’ll be right to the point.” Ray did not add, as I would now, “and those words will likely make you rethink something you thought you knew, or even change your mind about it entirely.”

I still remember Ray’s description, though, because over the nearly two decades I had the pleasure of knowing and working with Arthur, those words always rang true, no matter the setting, social or professional, no matter the topic.

There was more to him than that, of course, but he always cut to the chase eloquently, clearly, and kindly, whether summing up a meeting discussion or critiquing a piece of writing. With a single comment he could help this writer, at least, find a more appropriate voice or approach or line of reasoning – never with false praise but with criticism that I took as affirmation of my ability to successfully go in a different direction. I could interpret his criticism positively because all of my interactions with him were affirming and he knew just what and how much to say. I saw in him a fellow introvert, but one who had what I always thought an uncanny insight into others. That insight may be what made him such an influential mentor to students, staff, and faculty colleagues.

Arthur was always generous of his time and expertise – whether it was in agreeing to fill in for me at one of those dreaded DC meetings of center folks called by the feds; or editing a technical report that was too technical for me; or spending time with Partnership for Literacy coaches to discuss Curriculum as Conversation – his book that has forever changed the way I and many others think about curriculum. Again with Partnership for Literacy coaches, from his experience on the validation committee of the Common Core State Literacy Standards, he took the time to share the essence of what we could anticipate well before their implementation in classrooms. And when Sue Phillips brought the NYKids project to the School of Ed, he agreed to serve as PI. I doubt that that work fit well into his research and scholarship at the time, but he mentored Kristen and me as we went about conducting the research and disseminating the results – always available as we needed him, guiding until we were ready to take it on our own.

Arthur and I were age contemporaries, born just a few weeks apart. Unknown to each other, we simultaneously did our undergraduate and masters work first on the Connecticut coast and then in Boston. Thus over the years we occasionally discovered on each other’s bookshelves or in our memories the same influential authors or volumes. I found some of those books in his office last week, sparsely annotated with just a few cryptic marginal comments of emphasis or disagreement, typically concise and to the point.

But I also found a surprise. I brought it with me today in part to try to keep me light hearted and in part in case anyone here knows how it got there. There among the scholarly journals and serious volumes was shelved Arthur’s Great Big Valentine. It has no inscription, so I have no idea of the source, but there it was, perhaps long forgotten. Or was it just Arthur – giving a child’s book equal shelf space with the scholarly – or Arthur with a twinkle in his eye, still surprising us with his sense of humor?

I was never formally a student of his, but I realize that I was always informally so, benefitting not only from coming to understand some of the substance of his thinking and work, but more importantly from having a model to try to emulate of how to work and interact with others.

 Virginia Goatley
Professor and Chair, Literacy Teaching and Learning

When I was a graduate student, a friend and I proposed a series of talks especially for graduate students at the National Reading Conference. With support of the NRC conference planners, we moved forward in great anticipation of the possibilities ahead of us. It should be of no surprise that we invited Arthur and Judith to lead a discussion about the role of a National Research Center associated with literacy and see what we could learn about the current research and policy. In an era before cell phones and with limited email, we set about trying to contact Arthur to invite him to the session.

On our fourth attempt (and about to give up), he answered his phone. He nicely informed us he had, in fact, left three voicemail messages for us! In what was horrifying them, but humorous now, my initial sentence of conversation with Arthur Applebee was to learn that our graduate student office actually had voicemail. (Of course, we subsequently learned there was though no passcode and no way of finding out the code to retrieve any of the messages). Gracious, encouraging, and helpful, Arthur then proceeded to agree to our request, offered suggestions on a discussion format, and did a fantastic job at the conference of sharing his knowledge and ideas with an interested group of graduate students who basically viewed him as a rock star.

As I reflect on my time with Arthur, the second phase of our communications transitioned to what I think of as “chair” chats. And by chair, I mean the kind for sitting. Of note, these chairs started with ugly orange 60’s models, and transitioned to more comfortable and decorative alternatives. He would appear at my door, or I would appear at his door, sometimes with a purpose, sometimes just to catch up on our weekend events. Often, this led to an invitation to sit in the chair and chat for a bit. As an assistant professor, topics involved Center for English Learning and Achievement (CELA) reports or updates on my project. Or, we discussed recent presentation or publications that might be relevant to our work. As our roles changed and I assumed various administrative responsibilities, including Department Chair, we transitioned to conversations around accreditation, program review, course listings, students, policies, graduate assistantships, literacy challenges, and so forth. We also discussed the concert, theater show, or travel that he clearly valued, especially when they involved family. And as our “chair chats” continued, we often found many reasons to laugh, drawing on his delightful sense of humor to solve a problem or look at the bigger picture of the issue at hand. I continually learned from his expertise as he offered potential solutions to seemingly complex problems. To me, in addition to his scholarly expertise, was the collegial nature of these conversations and his valued friendship that I will treasure.

In the last few weeks, I came to know Arthur in new ways. After helping Bob and Judith distribute the announcement about Arthur with a few literacy listservs and organizations, responses came back in which people shared stories and thoughts about Arthur and his importance to so many people. One of his graduate student colleagues from the University of London shared a story. She wrote:

I encountered Arthur, as a young post-graduate, when he was studying with Jimmy Britton in London. Always modest, always slipping away to the library, and then the clear exciting power of his first book, The Child's Concept of Story. It bowled us over.

As I read this posting, I could completely imagine the “graduate student” Arthur hiding away in a special spot, writing away, quietly and purposely capturing his ideas that would transform literacy practice.

Other scholars noted:

Brilliant scholar whose contributions connected theory, research, and practice in profound ways.

He was one of the most influential and widely respected figures in the field of English education and also happened to be one the sweetest and most generous of colleagues to all who have ever worked with him. His brilliance and insight and encyclopedic knowledge of our field are almost unmatched among the scholars of his generation and the generation before him.

I also learned he wrote notes on the first pages of the books in his book collection, referring to certain pages later in the text that had new or controversial ideas. I learned he had connections to all kinds of literacy scholars in our interwoven communities, reminding me that he worked for the National Council of Teachers of English for a period of time in the 1970’s, traveled to China in the 1980’s when few Americans were going there, and set about a scholarly path that changed the nature of English education.

The social media responses about Arthur included many words to describe him and I’ll end by sharing a few:

Brilliant, gentle, intelligent, kind, collegial, quiet, mighty, mentor, thoughtful, supportive, compelling, encouraging, inspiring, articulate, and profound.

His scholarly and personal legacy is a strong one that we shall all cherish, and……. he’ll always be a rock star to me.

Robert Yagelski
Associate Professor, Educational Theory and Practice

I was asked to say a few words about Arthur Applebee as a colleague and chair of the Department of Educational Theory and Practice. It’s a request that’s both easy and difficult to fulfill:

  • Easy, because Arthur was an absolutely wonderful colleague and chair: supportive, deliberative, knowledgeable, never heavy-handed.
  • Difficult, because there is just too much to say about Arthur to convey in a few minutes the impact he had on his colleagues in ETAP, on the department as a whole, and indeed on the scholarly disciplines in which he worked.

With his insight, humility, integrity, and gentle manner, he was in so many ways a model for all of us to aspire to.

I never met Arthur before I came to UAlbany, but I was well acquainted with his work long before I joined the faculty here in the mid-1990s. His impressive record as a scholar is well to everyone in this room, but I’m not sure everyone fully appreciates the profound influence he has had in the fields of English education, rhetoric and composition, literacy research, curriculum studies, and related fields. As a graduate student and young scholar in the 1980s and 1990s, I read his seminal monographs Writing in the Secondary School (NCTE, 1981); How Writing Shapes Thinking (with Judith Langer , NCTE, 1987); Literature in the Secondary School (NCTE, 1993) and I referred to these works often in my own writing. And of course his book Tradition and Reform in the Teaching of English (published in 1974) was required reading for anyone in English education. He truly was a scholar of immense stature.

The extent of his influence was brought home to me in rather dramatic fashion a few years ago, when I was a member of the executive committee of the Conference on English Education (CEE), the main professional organization in the field. In 2005 CEE sponsored what it called a “leadership summit” to provide an opportunity for leading figures in the field to take stock of the state of English education at a time of dramatic change in national education policy. It was an intense four-day workshop that resulted in several white papers on policies in English education. Arthur did not attend, but his presence was palpable. At one point in the summit, one of the working groups shared the results of a national survey they had conducted of doctoral programs in the field. One of the survey questions asked respondents to list the names of scholars whose work was required reading in their programs. Only one name appeared on all the responses: Arthur Applebee. No other scholar showed up even on a majority of doctoral program reading lists in the field.

Now, you would never suspect any of this as a result of day-to-day interactions with Arthur. He was as humble and taciturn about his own achievements as he was prominent as a scholar. I always thought it odd that he instituted a kind of tradition in ETAP by starting every faculty meeting with an invitation to us, his colleagues, to share recent publications, talks, grants, and other professional achievements. “Brags,” he called them. “Any brags?” he would ask at the beginning of each faculty meeting. And of course we would take him up on this invitation with gusto. But bragging about himself or his own work was the last thing Arthur would ever do, which is why this little tradition always struck me as so incongruous. In fact, most of what I learned about Arthur himself and his latest research came from colleagues or students who would mention it in casual conversation. This is how I learned, for example, the stunning fact that Arthur had been a conscientious objector during the Vietnam War. It’s how I would learn about things like his latest gigantic grant. We had in our midst a giant who was so self-effacing as to be almost invisible at times.

But of course he wasn’t invisible to us in ETAP because we all depended upon him as our chair to make it possible for us to do our work. For this I am ever grateful. My ETAP colleagues and I benefited from Arthur’s very subtle but distinctive approach to being chair. I think I can characterize that approach by describing a typical interaction with him about a complicated professional decision or dilemma. For instance, a few years ago when Bob Bangert-Drowns invited me to serve as associate dean in the School of Education (an invitation I am certain Bob came to regret!), I agonized over the decision. So I went to Arthur, as I often would in such situations. Our conversation went something like this:

Me: Bob has asked me to be associate dean.
Arthur: Do you want to do it?
Me: Yes, but I’m not sure this is the right time for me.
Arthur: Well, whatever you decide, I’ll support you.

I’m pretty sure everyone in ETAP had a version of that same conversation with Arthur at some point. Of course, Arthur would help you carefully think through the decision, considering pros and cons and angles you probably hadn’t thought of. But he never imposed his own point of view, never conveyed a sense that one decision or another would be wrong, and never made you feel that you could let him down. Instead, he made you feel important, and your importance was underscored by his unspoken confidence in you and his insistence that the decision was yours and that you would do the best possible thing. Somehow, this approach never put added pressure on you, as you might expect. Instead, it conveyed a sense of security and even self-efficacy.

The one time Arthur did share a personal detail with me was during one of our many impromptu office conversations that he would initiate when there was a committee assignment that needed to be filled or some other departmental job that needed doing. Arthur liked to drop in unscheduled to discuss such matters. It was during one of those brief conversations that I mentioned to him that my wife, Cheryl, and I had been sailing the previous weekend. He asked me about that, and then he told me that he had grown up sailing with his father on Lake Michigan on the very same kind of sailboat that my wife and I now own. I treasure that moment as much as all the advice and support that Arthur ever gave me. Somehow, it seems so right that one of the few things I learned about him as a person had to do with sailing, because he so often helped me—and all of us in ETAP, I think—navigate tricky professional waters.

And so I want to say, as sailors like to do, “Fair winds, Arthur, fair winds.”

Thank you.

Susan Phillips
Vice President for Strategic Partnerships
Professor, Counseling Psychology

Good afternoon, I’m Susan Phillips, the former dean and former provost you’ve been hearing about. It is my pleasure to help to commemorate the life and work of Arthur Applebee—you’ve heard that it has been a DISTINGUISHED life and work in so many ways. I want to highlight four of them with you today, from my particular perspective.

First, Arthur, A DISTINGUISHED SCHOLAR: Unlike many of Arthur’s colleagues, my first encounter with him was not in the context of his scholarly work, but rather in a plain, ordinary meeting of the department chairs in the School of Education. The dean at the time, Ralph Harbison, had decided that we chairs constituted his leadership group, and that we should meet regularly. Weekly, as I recall. And, so we saw each other quite a bit, Arthur, as chair of ETAP, Sean Walmsley as chair of Reading, Ray O’Connell as chair of Ed Admin, and me as chair of Ed & Counseling Psych. What a great group. I learned there of the thoughtful and visionary way that Arthur went about things.

His mind was an incredible asset, and became even more so as I became dean. I learned to listen for his thoughts, and to seek out his opinion. He was a master of keeping scholarship and excellence at the front of any tangle of policy or practice issues that arose across the School.

One very good example of this was when he was drawn into the Just For The Kids project – along with Janet Angels, and Kristen Wilcox, and Sharon Wiles, and others. As you’ve heard, this wasn’t Arthur’s typical work. This was a politically charged partnership of the business community, the state, and the research of higher ed. I typically describe this as a research slash school reform project that had to bring together all the K-12 players who are typically at odds with each other. Arthur’s voice in this was calming, steady, and wise—he kept the research focus squarely front and center, and reminded all what we could (and couldn’t) conclude from the data we had.

Arthur was a masterful and distinguished scholar.

Second, Arthur, a DISTINGUISHED PROFESSOR: It was my honor to shepherd Arthur’s appointment to the rank of Distinguished Professor – the highest rank in SUNY, and one enjoyed by only about 30 faculty -- past and present -- on this campus.

His scholarly career was astounding: as you’ve heard, his work won acclaim early, and he sustained an incredible record of accomplishments over four decades. By the time he was appointed Distinguished Professor, scholars around the world were saying things like:

“Arthur Applebee is the most important language arts education scholar currently alive”

And, he did it all in his eloquent and influential, but unassuming way. To quote from another scholar:

“Arthur pointed out to the country that we were not teaching students to write anything but short test answers – that one observation did more than any to motivate the writing revolution in American Schools”

We were honored to count Arthur, distinguished professor, among our ranks.

Third, Arthur as a DISTINGUISHED CITIZEN OF THE UNIVERSITY: As Dean and then as Provost, I confess that Arthur was one of my favorite “go-to” faculty. It helped a lot that he was not only a distinguished scholar in his own right, but also interested in advancing the university, particularly in areas of research, student excellence, and graduate study. I must have had him on “speed dial,” as a quick search of my computer revealed over 700 documents with his name! Many of these, of course, were arising from occasions for me to be writing him congratulations on yet another accomplishment, but many were also significant assignments where his hand is still visible today:

• He was one of the earliest members of the Governing Board for the then new Honors College
• He was a lead reviewer for the review of all of the campus doctoral programs (actually, he did this TWICE—over a decade apart)
• He served on the working group for Graduate Education in the University’s 2010 Strategic Plan
• He was a select reviewer of the faculty proposals for 2020 investment funds
• He was distinguished participant in the academic visioning process

(I was not successful in getting him to serve on the Budget Advisory Groups—but it wasn’t for lack of trying!)

And fourth, there is Arthur, the DISTINGUISHED COLLEAGUE AND FRIEND:
As a backdrop for this area of distinction, you may not know that in the early 1980s, just as China began to open its borders, Arthur was one of the few world-renowned scholars who was invited to speak at Bejing University where scholars were just returning after years of having been engaged in the Cultural Revolution. Over two decades later, I was honored to serve with him on a delegation to an international conference on teacher education at East China Normal University.

Of course, he spoke eloquently on what a research university brings to teacher preparation—providing the critical perspective about what research brings to professional preparation and to the improvement of professional practice.

But, even more, I learned that he was a delight as a travel partner—the five of us in that delegation shared many wonderful moments, including one that I recall vividly of Arthur sitting in the front of a Chinese cab. Those of you who have taken Chinese cabs know that the rules of the road are, shall we say, flexible, and that the best strategy for managing sheer terror was to sit in the rear of the cab and look ANYWHERE but forward. Those of us in the rear seat wondered about his nerves of steel in what surely felt like Mr. Toad’s Wild Ride!

And, most recently, Arthur was a gracious friend, host, and guide as he and Judith helped me learn my way around New York City over the past year. Indeed, I have a wonderful memory of Arthur from just a few months ago when he and Judith and I had a delightful dinner in the Village and ooh-ed and ahh-ed and laughed over pictures and memories of our travels in China.


Arthur Applebee was truly a distinguished man, all around, who leaves each of us with his legacy of distinction. From our reflections just today, we will leave this celebration with memories of not only his dedication, his scholarship, his impact on professional practice, and his shaping of a department, school, university and discipline—but also his gifts as a mentor, his value as a colleague, and his laughter and good humor.

(And, I would add, his willingness to take the front seat in that Shanghai cab!)

Michael Mastroianni
Former Student, Educational Theory and Practice

Good Afternoon. I’d like to thank Dr. Langer and Dr. Bangert-Drowns for the honor of being here today. My name is Mike Mastroianni. I am a recent graduate of the Department of Educational Theory and Practice. Dr. Applebee was my advisor, the chair of my dissertation committee, and whether he knew it or not, my mentor. First and foremost, I’d like to extend my deepest condolences to Dr. Langer, and to Dr. Applebee’s family. But I also want to extend my sympathies to all of us here today. How BLESSED we have been; how incredibly lucky we were for so long! To have known Dr. Applebee, to have worked with him, to have studied under him. He was in OUR School of Education. For ETAP, he was our patriarch, he was the heartbeat and compass of our department. We were, and are, just so very blessed, and so very, very fortunate that he was ours for so long.

Today I represent Dr. Applebee’s students, his advisees, and all the women and men Dr. Applebee’s touched over the years during his professorship. To know Dr. Applebee was to know a scholar. Dr. Applebee was a scholar in every sense of the word. And for his students, he was someone we aspired to be more like. He was a superb teacher—his classes were the best courses I took at UAlbany. Once, at the end of a course, he asked students for verbal feedback. My only comment to him—a comment I don’t think was extremely popular with my peers—was for in his future classes to not be so egalitarian with class time; to not share the stage with students so much. My thought process then, as it is today, is when you have an opportunity to be in the presence of someone like Dr. Applebee for a mere three hours a week—a leading expert on language, and literacy and learning—all you want to do is hear that person talk and try to absorb as much as you possibly can.

As a researcher, Dr. Applebee conducted the type of research I think we all should aspire to conduct. His research sought to address big, lofty, interesting, interdisciplinary problems; it was ambitious, and timely; and sought to serve national policymakers and education leaders, but also local school administrators and teachers. In my mind, again, his research is the type of research—in scope, and mission, and in impact—we all should aspire to conduct. I had the opportunity to work with Dr. Applebee and Dr. Langer for five and half years on the National Study of Writing Instruction. With a background in physics, I had no business being there except for a fortunate stroke of serendipity. But what an incredible gift you gave me—you welcomed me, and taught me, and you helped me grow. And I am indebted to you both.

As an advisor, I love the bar he set for his students. He had high expectations for us, and he was honest and frank. His feedback wasn’t sugarcoated, but it was fair. And because of that, we trusted him. We trusted his critiques. His feedback was so valuable. For me, I always knew if he liked something I wrote, then it was good. And vice versa, when he pushed me for more, I knew I needed to dedicate more time, and energy to the piece. For my dissertation I had a committee of three. But really, in my mind, once I received his seal of approval, personally I knew the section was in pretty good shape.

On a personal level, when I think of Dr. Applebee, I think of a man with the utmost character. I think of a man who lived his life abiding by a strong ethical code. I’ll always remember his kindness, his compassion, his love, and his tough love. I’ll always remember a man who trusted me, and who gave me the freedom to discover and carve my own path. And I’ll always remember a man who respected me, and respected his students, and served us and the department so magnificently. On behalf of all his students, and the Department of Educational Theory and Practice, we are grateful for his stewardship.

In closing, I echo all the beautiful sentiments shared so eloquently by today’s speakers. We will miss Dr. Applebee dearly. We are indebted to him for the gifts he gave us, and for the privilege of calling him ours. Thank you again to Dr. Langer, and Dr. Bangert-Drowns for allowing me to share in this moment with you, to celebrate an extraordinary life, and to honor a wonderful man. Thank you.