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State Sen. Scott White, 1970-2011

State Senator Scott White

State Sen. Scott White, 1970-2011

The University of Washington alumni community was saddened to learn of the passing of State Senator Scott White, who died Friday, October 21, of cardiac arrest brought on by an undiagnosed enlarged heart. White, who graduated from the Evans School of Public Affairs in 2001, also taught courses in legislative relations there until the end of 2009.

Senator White was an ardent supporter of higher education, and was also a friend of public transit. Both of these passions were on display earlier this year when he worked to restore funding to King County Metro and lobbied to maintain bus routes that affected the University. As a result, students were not affected by threatened route changes and cutbacks, and were able to enjoy strong transit access to campus.

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Onalaska 5th-Graders “Adopt” the UW

(Via UWToday) When an Onalaska elementary school asked the UW for help in inspiring her students to think about college, UW staffers rose to the occasion. Cheryl Smaciarz's students wear their "scholar berets" and other Husky gear.

Read their story here
. Did you have a teacher who pointed you to college when you didn’t think it was for you? You should get in touch and let them know about the effect they had. It will make their day.

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Astronaut and UW alum Bonnie Dunbar featured in UW 360 video

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While the Museum of Flight didn’t get a space shuttle, it’s still an amazing piece of Northwest culture.

Former astronaut and UW alum Bonnie Dunbar served as president and CEO of the Museum of Flight until April 2010. Visit Seattle’s Museum of Flight and hear from former astronaut and UW alum Bonnie Dunbar as they prepare to house the full-fuselage shuttle trainer from NASA.

UW 360 takes you on a tour of the Museum of Flight in this exciting video. Read more on Dunbar, the 2004 Alumnus of the Year in this 2004 article from Columns magazine.

Also in May’s edition of UW 360:

UW 360, a magazine-style show that takes you inside the University of Washington, airs Wednesdays at 10 p.m. on UWTV (channel 27 in Seattle). New episodes air the first Wednesday of each month with UW drama alum Samantha Rund as host.

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UW alumna Elisha Logue started the Innovator’s Network

UW alumni Elisha Logue, left, started the Innovator's Network.

A new way to donate and help fight cancer has come, and with it comes the full support of the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center. The Innovator’s Network strengthens the ties between donors and scientists to fund the future of cancer research. It was started by Scott Hutchinson, great-nephew of the center’s namesake, and UW alumna Elisha Logue as a way to get a younger demographic to begin donating. 

According to a 2008 report, people in their 30s and younger were donating just 1 percent of the total amount received by the center each year. By connecting with potential donors 45 and under, the Innovator’s Network can create a bond that will grow as the people become more stabilized in their life. In order to make joining the Innovator’s Network easier, the group organizes events such as happy hours to fit into the lives of younger individuals. 

You can watch this video to see how the network is committed to getting new donors involved with the new group. 

“The (people) we are looking for, they really want to give—but they may not have felt they could make a big difference on their own,” Logue says. “And they may still be searching for that thing they feel connected with, and want to give to. This generation is about giving back and involvement—and it’s about networking with people of other backgrounds we wouldn’t have known otherwise. Social interaction is important to us.”

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Five UW alumni raising money for cancer at The Madhouse Project

At the University of Washington, five great friends came together: Phil Friedman, John Fiala, Mitch Morando, Brad Newcomer, and Kurt Shintaffer. After graduation in 1996, they lived together near campus in a house dubbed “The Madhouse” before moving on, and out, to the rest of what life was bringing their way.

From playing for the Pittsburgh Steelers to attending graduate school, they left Seattle behind. But when eight years had passed, they had all returned and were looking to give back in a meaningful way. Thus was born The Madhouse Project, a Seattle charity that has been operating since 2005 in support of the Seattle Cancer Care Alliance.

Every year, this influential group of UW alumni, along with Randy Tennant, a friend of Friedman’s from the MBA program at UCLA, organize the Night Out for a Cure cocktail fundraiser to donate to the SCCA. Since its inception, the Night Out for a Cure has progressed from raising more than $16,000 in a single night to more than $150,000.

To learn more about the project and its five UW alumni directors, visit The Madhouse Project site.

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Brandon Roy, Nate Robinson meet with Husky fans

Brandon Roy and Nate Robinson - UW HuskiesBrandon Roy and Nate Robinson are Husky basketball legends. Both spoke to UW alumni and fans at an exclusive post-game Q&A following the Portland Trail Blazers-Oklahoma City Thunder game April 1 at the Rose Garden.

It was all part of the UW Alumni Association’s fifth annual Husky Night with the Trail Blazers. Brandon Roy, an All-Star for the Blazers, has been our star here since he was drafted by Portland in 2006. Nate Robinson, the only player in NBA history to win three Slam Dunk contests, just so happened to be in town with the Thunder.

And, yes, since the game was against the Thunder (who used to be the Seattle SuperSonics – grrrr!), many loyal Sonics fans showed up wearing their green and gold.

Two Husky legends in an intimate setting—this is what the UWAA is all about!

More than 100 people came out for the event, which began with a Husky Happy Hour in downtown Portland. We raffled off a few great prizes, including a Brandon Roy autographed jersey and a picture with Brandon after the game. The Blazers rallied for a 98–91 victory after being down 11 points at halftime.

The Q&A following the game was a lot of fun. Everyone was pleasantly surprised when Brandon was joined by Nate Robinson, who was recently traded to the Thunder. Together, they answered questions like:  “What did you think of Isaiah Thomas going to the NBA?” and, “What was your favorite memory as a Husky?”

As always, it was a very exciting and fun-filled evening. Go Huskies!

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One in 3 million: UW alum Diana Inch is the only entrant to correctly pick the Final Four

UW alum Diana Rich correctly picks Final FourBe honest, how many of your teams actually made it to the Final Four this year? Not many, if you’re like most of America. In fact, 80 percent of brackets filled out on the Yahoo! Tourney Pick ‘Em game failed to pick a single Final Four team. Not a single one!

Diana Inch had them all. The UW alum and high school librarian is the only participant out of rougly 3 million in the Yahoo! universe to correctly pick the Final Four: Connecticut, Kentucky, Butler and Virginia Commonwealth. She has UConn vs. Butler in the NCAA title game, and believes the “other” Huskies will win the national championship.

Read a full-length interview with Diana from Yahoo! Sports. She says her favorite numbers are 7 and 11 and picked teams closest to that throughout the tournament. Butler is a No. 8 seed, while VCU was a No. 11 seed. She also picked winners based on mascots that were either dogs, cats or had four legs. UConn Huskies. Kentucky Wildcats. Butler Bulldogs. VCU Rams. “Any mascots we didn’t know, I looked up online,” Diana told Yahoo! Sports. “That’s what librarians do, we look things up!”

A 1996 graduate of the UW iSchool, Diana is a librarian and coaches girls soccer at Jefferson High School near Salem, Ore. Way to go, Diana!

Photo courtesy of AP.

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Life’s a dish for “Orangette” author Molly Wizenberg

UW alum and Orangette author Molly WizenbergAn intense love of food is nothing new to Molly Wizenberg, a former Ph.D. student at the University of Washington who now writes a popular food blog along with a full plate of other goodies.

Molly came to the UW after graduating from Stanford to study the cultural values surrounding the French social security system in the pursuit of becoming a medical anthropologist. Today, she is very far from that goal. Now she’s the author of Orangette, a tasty blog that mixes Molly’s life experiences with the foods she loves. She’s also the co-host of the humorous food podcast Spilled Milk as well as a columnist for various food magazines, author of the best-selling book A Homemade Life: Stories and Recipes from My Kitchen Table, and co-owner of the Ballard pizzeria Delancey with husband Brandon Pettit.

Molly has become a true foodie of Seattle. “I’m just grateful to earn a living doing work that I love,” she said. “That’s the best part, hands down.”

Orangette is the blog Molly began in 2004 just after leaving the cultural anthropology program atCake by Molly Wizenberg UW. Since then, she has shared with readers stories about her past, her love of food and many innovations on new and old recipes. Molly recently announced she had sent out her new book proposal, and while she cannot divulge the secrets of her new book she did say it will be similar to her previous book, which intertwined memories with the food that made them memorable; much like the blog does on a day-to-day basis.

The stories Molly tells on Orangette are heartfelt and honest, and her inner self shows through completely. In the story of living in France and having leeks vinaigrette prepared by her host mother, readers can feel the love of learning about new food. Likewise, her enjoyment of summer is evident in the raspberry yogurt popsicles she shared with readers last July.

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