UBC Reports | Vol. 49 | No. 12 | Dec.
UBC will never be the same. Part of its charm, part of its
grace, and part of its history will be lost when Chuck Slonecker,
former head of the Anatomy Department and Director of Ceremonies
soon retires. Throughout his 35 years at UBC, Prof. Slonecker,
or Chuck as he is fondly known by alumni, colleagues and members
of the university community, has served on an endless list
of committees along the way developing a well-deserved reputation
as the epitome of the selfless public servant.
As director of Ceremonies and University Relations since
1990, he has presided over countless functions on the university’s
behalf and is a familiar figure to thousands of students at
Congregation. Last year he was awarded the Individual Exceptional
Service Award for being a long-time United Way organizer and
supporter. He was a member of the UBC Alumni Association Board
of Directors from 1993-1999.
Slonecker joined UBC as an assistant professor in Dentistry
in 1968 and became a full professor in 1976. That year he
received a Certificate of Merit for the UBC Master Teacher
Award. He won the Killam Teaching Prize for UBC Medicine in
1996. He also received the JCB Grant Award from the Canadian
Association for Anatomy, Neurobiology and Cell Biology. In
2001, he received the President’s Service Award.
He is involved with the YMCA Youth Basketball Association
Program and was a board member, Community Unit, from 1975-1991.
Slonecker also served for two years as the acting vice president
of External Relations at UBC.
Slonecker has produced 19 publications, five book reviews,
16 special publications, one text book and 25 abstracts.
It will not be easy to replace Chuck Slonecker. In fact,
the university has decided that it will take two people to
take his place in the ceremonies office.
Eilis Courtney will take over as Director of Ceremonies and
will retain the administrative duties of the role. As the
former Associate Director of Ceremonies she oversaw functions
that ranged from the royal visit to pancake breakfasts. Known
for her competence, humour and unflappable nature, she has
served as UBC’s resident expert on ceremony and protocol
for more than 10 years.
The ceremonial role of the function will now be split off
into a new position called University Marshal. This prestigious
position is modeled on a similar title and role at Harvard
UBC’s first university marshal is Nancy Hermiston who
is also a professor in the School of Music. (see sidebar,
Chuck Slonecker’s legacy of public service and years
of loyal devotion to UBC will undoubtedly be missed but unlikely
to be ever forgotten.