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Coleman Award Winners Announced for 2014

Thursday, April 17th, 2014 | Posted in Development News, Student Success by Eileen M. Thornton | No Comments »

The winners of the 2014 Ruth and Frank Coleman Award for Excellence in Short Fiction were honored at a luncheon this week. Graduating psychology major Shea A. Keene won first place with her story, “Eighty-seven Dollars and Sixty Cents.”  Freshman exercise science major Andrew Gaunt won second place with his piece “If I Had a Vagina.”

USF Professor and contest judge Joan Kaywell, Andrew's father Campbell Gaunt, 2nd place winner Andrew Gaunt, Jeanne Coleman, 1st place winner Shea A. Keene, Shea's guest, and contest judge and USF Professor Carolyn Ellis

USF Professor and contest judge Joan Kaywell, Andrew’s father Campbell Gaunt, 2nd place winner Andrew Gaunt, Jeanne Coleman, 1st place winner Shea A. Keene, Shane McNutt, and contest judge and USF Professor Carolyn Ellis

Here is what winner Shea A. Keene had to say about her motivation for writing the winning piece:

I initially wrote “Eighty-Seven Dollars and Sixty Cents” as a sophomore for a Fiction Technique class I took at Florida State University. The events in the story are based on my grandmother’s actual experiences working on a chicken farm as a young girl in the post-WWII years. She first told me this story when I was in high school, and her determination to rise above poverty, as well as her willingness to sacrifice for family, profoundly impacted me. I have always respected my grandmother and looked to her as a strong female role model, and writing this story allowed me to perfectly encapsulate her strength of spirit and perseverance.

Ruth Coleman’s daughter Jeanne writes, of her participation in the award:

I shared lunch with the two award winners, senior Shea Keene (“Eighty-Seven Dollars and Sixty Cents”) and 
freshman Andrew Gaunt. (“If I Had a Vagina”). What amazing people ! 

I have represented my mother at the awards luncheon for the past 3 years. After my mother’s death in 2012, I have had the privilege of being one of the judges of the stories submitted for consideration and meet the winners. The Ruth 
Coleman Short Story Award allows me to spread my mother’s message that writing, reading, studying, learning, and encouraging young people to test themselves are essential to personal fulfillment. I hear her voice in my mind and I 
try my best to listen and follow her advice. 

Thank you Shea and Andrew for sharing time with me yesterday. Thank you Carolyn Ellis and Joan Kaywell for your enthusiasm and commitment to excellence in writing, and thank you Bill Garrison, Merrell Dickey, Beverly Marks, and all the many others at the USF Library library staff for making the Ruth Coleman Short Story Award happen.

Ruth Coleman, who loved writing and scholarship and for whom the award is named

Ruth Coleman, who loved writing and scholarship and for whom the award is named

The Coleman award was created by a generous gift from the late Ruth Coleman, who had a passion for writing, literature, and the USF Libraries. This year’s entries were judged by her daughter, Tampa attorney and library donor Jeanne Coleman, and USF professors Joan Kaywell and Carolyn Ellis. Special Collections librarian Melanie Griffin serves as the library’s faculty liaison for this award. Melanie curates the Children’s and Young Adult Literature collections, for which the late Ruth Coleman began an endowment. The library endowment and collections continue to grow. To be a part of this initiative, contact Merrell Dickey at (813) 974-1654 or mdickey@usf.edu.

 

 

 

 

Sue Vastine Gives to the USF Women’s Club/Grace Allen Library Endowment

Monday, July 1st, 2013 | Posted in Development News by Eileen M. Thornton | Comments Off

Sue Vastine has been helping the USF Tampa Library grow and serve students for much of her adult life

Sue Vastine has been helping the USF Tampa Library grow and serve students for much of her adult life

Longtime USF Libraries ‘family member’ and former president of the USF Women’s Club Sue Vastine has made a significant bequest to the USF Tampa Library. Her generous gift will benefit the USF Women’s Club/Grace Allen Library Endowment.

Sue, as well as her husband Jim, worked for the USF Tampa Library for many years, beginning when the library was housed in what is now the Student Services building (SVC). Sue began in cataloging and later moved to serials. She tried to stop working when their son was born, but as she said, “You can’t keep a good librarian down” and was pressed into service during the great card catalog conversion to digital, as she had the rare ability to read and catalog Russian. Sue has also been involved with the USF Women’s Club since 1965, and recalls when the Women’s Club began raising enough money to go from providing textbook funds for one or two students to contributing on a larger scale, by providing collections for all Library patrons to use.

Sue’s late and widely-revered husband Jim Vastine was a charter student at USF beginning in 1960 , beginning his long career in the USF Tampa Library in a Federal Work-Study position while he was an undergraduate student. Listen to Jim’s oral history.

After graduation, Jim went to graduate school at FSU and was later drafted into military service. When home on leave, he would visit his parents in Bartow and then come visit the USF Tampa Library. The Library management would ask him each time if he was out of the Navy and would like to return to work at the Library. “Hiring was very different back then,” says Sue. “Mary Lou Harkness, the library director at the time, was on vacation and on the golf course. They called her and said, ‘Jim Vastine is here and he is out of the Navy. He would like to come work here’ …and she said ‘Fine!’ and he was hired.” Jim took an available cataloging position and then was able to move into his desired role as a reference librarian a year later. He later served, for a time, as assistant director for public services under Sam Fustukjian, even though reference and instruction were his true loves.

Sue and Jim Vastine spent much of their adult lives helping the USF Tampa Library grow and serve the USF community. She chose to give to the Library because of the important work that goes on here, and because it is “near and dear” to the Vastine family. To make your own contribution, contact Merrell Dickey at (813) 974-1654 or mdickey@usf.edu.

Leland Hawes

Thursday, May 30th, 2013 | Posted in Development News by Eileen M. Thornton | Comments Off

Dear friend of the USF Libraries Leland Hawes passed away on Saturday, May 18th. Mr. Hawes was a life-long resident of Tampa and a member of the John and Grace Allen Society with giving primarily to the USF Libraries.

Mr. Hawes’s career as a journalist began as a young boy and ended in 2004 when, after 50 years, he retired from the Tampa Tribune.

Over the years, Mr. Hawes has served on the Library Advisory Board, was the recipient of an Honorary Doctorate of Humane Letters in 2005, and in 2006 helped to establish the Patrick Riordan Memorial Fellowship fund in the Library.

 

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