News Briefs

Gin Dumcius

Denis Leary for President

UMass president, that is.

The Worcester Telegram and Gazette, going by the criteria set down by Governor Mitt Romney that the person must be an extraordinary fundraiser, drew up a list of potential candidates for the job in its August 16 issue. Among them: Former President Bill Clinton’s labor secretary and failed gubernatorial candidate, Robert Reich, former Governor Jane Swift, and former Celtics coach Rick Pitino.

“As far as Central Massachusetts natives go, some might nominate comic Denis Leary or James K. Kallstrom, the former FBI investigator,” wrote the Telegram’s Shaun Sutner in the local news section.

No word on whether Leary’s friend and fellow comedian Lenny Clark, who once stole a city bus to help his bid for Cambridge City Council, would join him if Leary were to ascend to the presidency.

Almost Terrorists, 2003?

News that is sure not to make The University Reporter anytime soon: College of Public and Community Service professor Ann Withorn was interviewed by the Mass State Police over a story she had written in the feminist magazine Sojourner called “Almost Terrorists, 1970.”

According to September’s Boston magazine in its City Journal section, apparently someone read the partly funny story, about an anti-capitalist group thinking about bombing Boston’s National Guard Armory in the 1970s following Kent State, and called the Massachusetts Terrorism Tip Line.

The State Police, with a policy of investigating every tip that comes in, dropped by and interviewed the feminist theory professor and her teenage daughter.

“The whole thing was scary and intimidating, and I’m a white woman living in Brookline with a Ph.D.,” Withorn told the magazine. “There’s a lack of judgment here that’s out of control.”

The incident comes on the heels of a Middle Eastern UMass Amherst professor getting questioned by the FBI earlier this year on his views on U. S. Foreign policy.

Professors Pomper, Woody Pass Away

Two UMass professors passed away over the summer, according to The Boston Globe.

Retired English Professor Emily Meyer Pomper, 65, of Middleton, Connecticut, died of sarcoma on July 28.

She joined UMass Boston in 1970 after teaching in California. From 1970 to 1973 she directed the Summer Program for Disadvantaged Students, and the Writing Proficiency Program from 1982 to 1990.

She retired in 1994.

Dr. Bette Woody, 66, of Cambridge, died of stomach cancer on July 31.

She was a professor at the College of Public and Community Service for eighteen years, and was heavily involved in projects outside of school, like sitting on the Cambridge Conservation Commission, being the first commissioner the Massachusetts Department of Environmental Management and working with the Wellesley College Center for Research on Women.