Public Health

Holiday greetings

December 22, 2008

Dear Faculty, Staff, Students, Alumni and Other Friends,

cimg1300-3.jpgIt may feel like a spring day in Chapel Hill, but Christmas is just a few days away. I’ve heard from some of you in Maine, Boston and Michigan where you are enveloped in snow—much nicer (except when you lose electricity) than the fog that’s surrounded us the last few mornings. The School is so quiet that even the guards commented on it to me last night as I was leaving. I miss the enthusiastic conversations in the atrium of our School and the lobby outside Rosenau Hall. It’s been a strange holiday season, because of the economy, more muted, less frenzied and maybe in the end, that will be one of the few good things about a bad economy.

img_0724-3.jpgMy husband and I spent a couple days in Blowing Rock, and it reminded me what a beautiful state this is, and how accessible much of it is to Chapel Hill. Here’s a picture of the mountain. I’ve decided that whenever we can, we should buy local and spend in the state.

Last week, Tyler Hansbrough broke the Tar Heels’ basketball scoring record, and Chapel Hill rejoiced. It was wonderful. Here’s a picture my friend Penny Hodgson caught on camera!

Wherever you are and whatever you are doing over the holidays, I hope your days are pleasant and healthy.  For some of you, the holidays may be bittersweet. You have lost wives, husbands, partners, parents, children and friends. My thoughts are with you. We remember Michelle Mayer, Patricia Meador, Laura Zaks and others who died in the last year. We will miss them, but their spirits live on in their legacies. Some of our faculty, staff and students are battling life-threatening diseases. Our thoughts are with you. And some very special people are retiring—like Ramona Womble, who has been head of HR at the School since 2000.

While the economy is in a downturn, this School has been blessed by truly great faculty, staff, students, alumni and friends. Our friends (some of whom work for the School) have pitched in to help with scholarships, unrestricted funds, professorships and other support for this spectacular institution. I am so grateful for all your support and counsel and awed by all you accomplish.

Best wishes to you all for wonderful holidays surrounded by family and friends. Thank you for all you do for this wonderful School.

With warmest regards,

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The views expressed in this blog are Barbara Rimer’s alone and do not represent the views and policies of The University of North Carolina or the Gillings School.