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Saturday, June 2, 2012

OSU LGBT Services Jeff Kenney replaces Steven Leider

Headline 'Queer studies position opens up for first time. For first time in OSU history, OSU seeks out new Queer Studies faculty' Barometer, Feb. 17, 2012

PHOTO: Oregon State University front page story by Alex Hilborn, "Queer studies position opens up for first time. For first time in OSU history, OSU seeks out new Queer Studies faculty," Barometer, Feb. 17, 2012, p. 1, 3. Allison Davis-White Eyes, Director of American Indian Initiatives in Intercultural Students Services, previously said there where three candidates for the position of the Office of LGBTQ Outreach and Services who came to campus in March. (See my previous post OSU School of Language, Culture and Society is perfect for OSU Foundation Magnus Hirschfeld Fund (2/19/12)). Note that this new academic group at OSU is perfect for the multi-million dollar research fund that I set up a few years ago with the OSU Foundation Magnus Hirschfeld Fund Agreement for research concerning humans or animals with a minority sexual orientation or gender identity.

I was disappointed that a recent stroke left me unable to attend the welcome Reception for Jeff Kenney, New Coordinator of OSU LGBT Services at Oregon State University. (See OSU directory listing Jeffrey M Kenney Coord-LGBT Svcs & Outreach Intercultural Stdnt Svcs) Kenney replaced Steven Leider who decided to become a Graduate Teaching Assistant pursuing a Master of Arts in the Interdisciplinary Studies Program of the Oregon State University Women Studies Department led by Susan Shaw. (See my previous post OSU School of Language, Culture and Society is perfect for OSU Foundation Magnus Hirschfeld Fund (2/19/12))

Steven Leider brought much enthusiasm to the job and was instrumental in starting up the OSU Pride center and making it part of OSU's ongoing educational programs. I expect Jeff Kenney will be able to take it to the next level.

CORRECTION 6/7/2012: The above paragraph in my original posting failed to mention that the OSU Pride center had been opened in 2004, a year before Steven Leider had arrived at OSU and became responsible for starting up the OSU Office of LGBT Outreach & Services. It is well documented elsewhere that the OSU Pride Center was the creation of students with the assistance of professional faculty Robin Ryan, Beth Reitveldt, and Linda Paschke. I apologize for failing to credit the team effort that created the OSU Pride center (including President Ed Ray who cut the ribbon to open the OSU Pride Center), but I stand by my original observation that every student I've talked to has credited Steven for being instrumental in helping to establish the OSU Pride Center as an ongoing institution that will live on as students come and go.

Hopefully, I will recover enough to be able to stop by campus and meet Jeff Kenney this summer. The email announcement for Jeff Kenney's welcoming party said:

"Please join Intercultural Student Services and the Pride Center in welcoming Jeff Kenney to Oregon State University as the Director of LGBT Outreach and Services with a welcome reception! The reception will be held on June 1, 2012 from 3-5pm in the Memorial Union, room 206 Asian Pacific-American Room. Jeff is joining us from North Carolina where we worked at Clemson University as the Associate Director of Diversity Education with a specialization in Intergroup Dialogue and Queer Student Support Services. Jeff holds a Masters in Counselor Education and a Bachelor of Fine Arts from the University of Nebraska, Kearney. He comes to us bringing four years of housing experience as a Resident Director at Clemson University and a Hall Director at the University of Michigan. His research interests include cultural micro-aggressions, emotional and cognitive development of peer dialogue facilitators, and professional implications regarding practitioners of white identity development. Jeff was born and raised in Omaha NE...always a Husker...excited to be a Beaver!!" (Quoted from forwarded email received May 31, 2012 by DJ Zissen, International Admissions Assistant, Office of International Admissions)

Nebraska holds a special spot in my heart because every year my family would stop in Kearney to stay overnight on our way to Grandma's house. Also, when I was still majoring in Fine Arts and wanting to do computer animation (decades before anybody actually did computer animation) a small art studio and animation company in Omaha gave me my first real job in animation, albeit the old-fashioned hand drawn cel type of animation. Of course, I got sidetracked into getting a electrical engineering degree and joining a computer company, Hewlett-Packard, because I had realized that the computer animation hardware and software still needed to be invented in order to do computer animation. Today, Hewlett-Packard computers that I worked on have been used by every major computer animation production house in the world. I never got around to becoming a fulltime computer animator as I had dreamed of doing, but I guess there is still time to do so!

I am also curious about who Kenney worked with at the University of Michigan. Did he know Trevor Hoppe? Trevor is a U of M gender studies grad student whose work I've been following for the last few years.