Chatham University

Chatham News

In Memory: Karen Lake Buttrey ’67, Member of the Board of Trustees

By: Esther L. Barazzone, Ph.D., President
November 29, 2010

I am very sad to inform you that we have learned that Karen Lake Buttrey ’67 passed away yesterday in Indianapolis following a month-long battle with stomach cancer. Karen served on Chatham’s Board of Trustees since 2004 and contributed greatly to the Board and her alma mater through her intellect, character and warm personality. We will miss her greatly – as a Board member, as an alumna and as a friend.

Information on the service and memorial contributions can be found in the following obituary.

Our deepest sympathies go out to Karen’s husband Don and her family at this time of loss.


1945 — 2010

Karen Lake Buttrey, philanthropist and community leader, passed away on November28. Karen was born October 3, 1945, to Thomas H. Lake and Marjorie L. Lake in Omaha, Nebraska. She was married for 25 years to Donald W. Buttrey, a local attorney.

Both Karen and Don have been long-time members of Second Presbyterian Church, where she served as a deacon and elder. Karen also served on the Endowment Board at Second Church.

Karen was graduated from Tudor Hall in Indianapolis in 1963. She received a Bachelor of Arts Degree (Psychology) in 1967 from Chatham College, located in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. Karen also received Masters Degrees from the University of Pittsburgh (Educational Research) in 1972, and from Indiana University (Educational Psychology) in 1979. She was also a Participant in the Stanley K. Lacy Leadership Development Program. Prior to her marriage, Karen was employed in educational and interior design positions.

Karen served as a member (Honorary Chair) of the Advisory Board of the Lake Institute on Faith and Giving at the Center on Philanthropy at Indiana University. The Lake Institute was envisioned and created by Karen and Don in 2002, to honor the legacy of Karen’s parents and to ensure that their values and commitment to faith and philanthropy will be passed on to future generations. The Institute seeks to build a scholarly foundation, through research, teaching and public service, for the exploration of the idea that religion plays a vital role in philanthropy.

At the time of her death, Karen served on the Boards of Trustees of Chatham, McCormick Theological Seminary in Chicago, and the Advisory Board of the Center on Philanthropy at Indiana University-Purdue University at Indianapolis. She served on several other boards throughout her life.

Karen provided generous support to her church, the United Way, the American Red Cross (Tiffany Circle Member) and The Salvation Army. She also supported numerous other charitable organizations, including The Women’s Fund and The Lacy Leadership Society.
In addition to her life of service, Karen loved to travel, play golf, exercise and was an avid reader. She was an active, vibrant woman in all areas of her life.

Karen is survived by her husband Don, three stepsons, Greg, Alan and Jason, her daughter-in-law Karen, her aunt Katherine Snyder, numerous cousins and her beloved dog, Cleo.

Karen was not only generous with her time and commitment to the community, she was an extremely loyal and generous mentor and friend. She will be greatly missed by all who knew her.

Services will be at 12:30 p.m. Saturday, December 4, at Second Presbyterian Church, 7700 North Meridian Street, with visitation at the Church from 10:30 a.m. until time of service.

In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to Second Presbyterian Church, Indiana University (for the benefit of the Lake Institute), or the charity of your choice.

Student-curated exhibition utilizes never-before-seen works to explore Western views of African art

By: Amanda Kennedy, Senior Public Relations Specialist
November 11, 2010

PITTSBURGH (November 8, 2010) … Works from the extensive Cheryl Olkes Collection of African Art at Chatham University once again will be on display through a student-curated exhibition and will feature art on public view for the first time. How to Look at African Art, curated by students in University’s Art 368: Museum Education and the Visual Arts class, contrasts the way Westerners view African art with the way Africans themselves view and appreciate the art they create.

The opening reception will be Thursday, November 11 from 4:00 p.m.-6:00 p.m. and the exhibition will continue through Thursday, December 2. The Chatham University Art Gallery is located in Woodland Hall on the University’s Academic Quad and is open Monday through Friday from 11:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. For more information call 412-365-1106 or email For directions and parking information

“Westerners have appreciated African art as “fine” art for over one hundred years and avant-garde artists like Picasso and Matisse first recognized it as an exciting and new visual experience. Unfortunately, little concern was given about who made these works, and why, and what this art meant to a particular culture,” explains Elisabeth Roark, Ph.D., Chatham’s associate professor of art who has studied the Olkes Collection since its acquisition in 2001. “This perspective has changed since the 1970s, when Cheryl Olkes first began her interest in African art, and scholars and curators are studying African art within a cultural context and exploring how African cultures view their works.”

Each year students in the Art Museum Studies program utilize the Olkes Collection to study African culture, then propose an exhibition theme based upon their research. The students are responsible for selecting the works, organizing the displays and creating all exhibition materials.

“Through their own individual research our students have juxtaposed how Western audiences have viewed African art with how these cultures not only display but utilize their art. And because of the scope of the Olkes Collection, we’ll be able to display items that haven’t been seen by the public.”

About the Olkes Collection of African Art
After graduating with a bachelor’s in English from Chatham in 1970, Cheryl Olkes earned a master’s in journalism at Ohio State University and a doctorate in communications at the University of Texas. She and her former husband, author Paul Stoller, collected art, books, beads and textiles during many trips to Africa throughout the 1980s and 1990s. Olkes was owner and director of Harmattan Arts of Africa Gallery in Washington, D.C. and through their extensive research of African art, Olkes and Stoller co-authored “In Sorcery’s Shadow: A Memoir of Apprenticeship Among the Songhay of Niger” in 1989. Chatham’s Olkes Collection represents the largest of its kind in western Pennsylvania, while other works from her estate are displayed at galleries across the country, including at the Smithsonian National Museum of African Art in Washington, D.C.

About Chatham University
Chatham University prepares students from around the world to help develop solutions to some of the world’s biggest challenges. Every Chatham student – women in Chatham’s historic women’s residential college, and men and women in Chatham’s graduate programs – receives a highly individualized, experiential educational experience that is informed by Chatham’s strong institutional commitment to globalism, the environment and citizen leadership. Founded in 1869, Chatham University includes the Shadyside Campus, with Chatham Eastside and the historic 39-acre Woodland Road arboretum; and the 388-acre Eden Hall Campus north of Pittsburgh. For more information call 800-837-1290 or visit

Take Charge of Your Life Partnership launches new campaign with screening and reception at Chatham U

By: Amanda Kennedy, Senior Public Relations Specialist
November 8, 2010

PITTSBURGH (November 8, 2010) — Research shows that when their values and wishes are discussed in advance, individuals and families fare better when a crisis occurs, such as a life threatening illness. The biggest challenge, however, is to get these types of conversations started. With funding from the Pennsylvania Department of Aging, the Take Charge of Your Life Partnership has created a series of videos and toolkits to empower people with skills and confidence to “Just Talk About It.”

Just Talk About It will officially launch on Monday, November 15 from 7:00-8:30 p.m. with a very special screening and reception at Chatham University’s James Laughlin Music Hall, featuring producers and actors from the videos. The screening is free and open to the public, although seating is limited. Individuals should RSVP by November 11 by calling 412-365-1859 or emailing Online registration is also available by clicking here. The toolkits and videos are also available on Take Charge’s website –

The Just Talk About It series contains one-minute videos covering an array of subjects that were identified in Pennsylvania as those the public could most benefit from learning and talking about: advance care planning, especially choosing a health care agent; providing care for loved ones; considering hospice and palliative care; and, managing pain.

The project’s co-directors are Dr. Peggy Stubbs and Cynthia Pearson, both founding members of Take Charge and co-authors of Parting Company: Understanding the Loss of a Loved One — The Caregiver’s Journey (Seal Press, 1999). Creating story lines with Take Charge board members, they worked with Greater Good Productions in Lawrenceville, which helped complete the scripts and then cast, shot and edited the videos.

Take Charge’s board chair, Maryanne Fello, Director of Forbes Hospice, says, “This is a wonderful opportunity to get our message of improving end-of-life care to everyone in Pennsylvania — and beyond.”

About the Take Charge of Your Life Partnership
Take Charge is a 501 (c) (3) nonprofit corporation whose mission is to educate, support and empower all people to deal with end-of-life issues through an innovative network of consumers, professionals, community organizations and corporations.

Center for Women’s Entrepreneurship hosts Women & Girls Foundation CEO Heather Arnet for next Women Business Leaders Breakfast Series

By: Amanda Kennedy, Senior Public Relations Specialist
November 5, 2010

PITTSBURGH (November 5, 2010) … According to the Center for Women’s Entrepreneurship (CWE) at Chatham University, mentoring is one element vital to the development of women entrepreneurs. Recruiting and retaining women who view each other as resources for growth rather than competitors can often enhance the overall workplace. To explore these issues and more, CWE will welcome Heather Arnet, CEO of the Women and Girls Foundation, as its next speaker in the popular Women Business Leaders Breakfast Series. “Women: Our Best Asset. How We Can Work Together to Achieve Business Success” will be held on Friday, November 12 from 7:30-9:00 a.m. in the James Laughlin Music Center on the Shadyside Campus.

Individual tickets are still available for $25 per person and include a continental breakfast. More information is available at, by calling 412-365-1253 or emailing

“Heather is a leader in supporting women and inspiring them to energize each other and reach their potential,” notes Rebecca Harris, the CWE director. “We’re thrilled that she is bringing her passion and expertise in this area to the business community.”

About Heather Arnet
Heather Arnet is Chief Executive Officer of the Women and Girls Foundation (WGF), a non-profit organization based in Pittsburgh, PA with a mission to achieve increased gender equity through strategic investments in public policy initiatives. Arnet was selected to be the Foundation’s first Executive Director in 2004, and promoted to the title of Chief Executive Officer in 2010.

Arnet is a tireless advocate for women and girls rights locally, nationally, and internationally, and serves as a regular Op-Ed writer for the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette and Pittsburgh Business Times, and commentator to local and national media regarding women and girls rights and economic development. At WGF, Arnet has spearheaded efforts to decrease the gender wage gap and increase women’s representation on public and corporate boards. Heather and the Foundation received National and International media attention for their successful “Girlcott” of Abercrombie & Fitch in 2005. Arnet has been interviewed on NBC’s Today Show, CNN Headline News, CNN’s Paula Zahn Show, Fox News “Hannity & Colmes”, MSNBC “Scarborough Country,” ABC and CBS Nightly News as well as National Public Radio, and the BBC.

In 2006 Arnet and the Foundation received awards from the National Organization of Women (NOW) and the International Women’s Funding Network (WFN) for the Foundation’s triumphant youth-led Girlcott and for Arnet’s work in energizing a new generation of women leaders. Arnet has been identified as one of Pittsburgh’s “Top 40 under 40” by Pittsburgh Magazine, as one of the “Top Twelve Noteworthy Business Leaders of 2006” by the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette and received the Diamond Award, for “Outstanding CEO Leadership” by the Pittsburgh Business Times in April 2008.

Previous to her position at WGF, Arnet served as the Director of Development for City Theatre, and Senior Vice President of Marketing for leading a $3.5 million marketing budget and helping to secure over $15 million in venture capital funds.

Arnet serves as a Board Member of Grantmakers of Western Pennsylvania and on the Advisory Boards of WQED Multimedia and The Forbes Funds. Arnet served as an elected Board Director of the Pittsburgh Public School Board 2007-2009 and served as the Regional Vice President of the Pennsylvania Women’s Campaign Fund 2005-2007.

Arnet is a member of the Dramatist Guild of America and has her BA degree from Carnegie Mellon University in Literary and Cultural Studies with a minor concentration in Directing through the Drama department. In addition to her work at WGF, Arnet also writes and directs feminist theatre. Currently she is directing a new world premiere play by Vanessa German for the August Wilson Center for African American Culture which will premiere at the First Voice: A Pittsburgh International Black Arts Festival in May 2010. Arnet will be directing a reading of “Root” this summer at the Vineyard Playhouse on Martha’s Vineyard and a full production of “Root”’ for The Ensemble Theatre in Houston in 2012. Arnet’s play “Yo’Mama!” (which she wrote and directed, about the challenges and joys of modern motherhood) was awarded a grant from the Pennsylvania Council of the Arts and the Sprout Fund and has been produced in Pittsburgh, Seattle, Chicago, and Alaska.

About the Center for Women’s Entrepreneurship
The Center for Women’s Entrepreneurship at Chatham University (CWE) provides opportunities for women entrepreneurs to start, develop, and significantly grow their businesses by utilizing Chatham resources, programs, and faculty expertise. CWE provides programming targeted toward local and regional women in business designed to advance and hone their professional skills. CWE teaches the art of thinking and acting entrepreneurially by focusing on innovation and creativity within the context of existing organizational environments. CWE also offers specific programs for both undergraduate and graduate students which can help them learn the skills they need to become successful entrepreneurs, intrapreneurs, and successful women in business.

The mission of the Center for Women’s Entrepreneurship at Chatham University is to educate, create economic opportunities, and foster entrepreneurial thinking for women entrepreneurs, women in business, and students. Current and initial funding for CWE provided by the Claude Worthington Benedum Foundation. Initial funding for CWE was provided by the Lois Tack Thompson Fund of The Pittsburgh Foundation.

Tickets still available for Rosalind Wiseman speaking engagement at Chatham this Friday, November 5

By: Amanda Kennedy, Senior Public Relations Specialist
November 1, 2010

PITTSBURGH (November 1, 2010) … The producers of Rosalind Wiseman’s Girl World Book Tour have announced that tickets are still available for this special Mother-Daughter event on Friday, November 5 from 7-9 p.m. at Chatham University’s Campbell Memorial Chapel. In partnership with Joseph-Beth Booksellers and Chatham University, the Girl World Book Tour is an interactive, 90-minute mother-daughter workshop that engages parents and girls in conversation and laughter about common triumphs and challenges during the tween and teen years.

The $40 per mother-daughter pair includes: admission to the event, one copy of each of Rosalind’s latest books, and a gift bag featuring free samples of Dove go fresh deodorant and information from local partners. Tickets are available at Joseph-Beth Booksellers in-store at 510 South 27th Street on Pittsburgh’s South Side, or over the phone at 412-381-3600. (Additional tickets may be purchased for $20 per person (also includes a book and gift bag.)

Moms & daughters (ages 8-14) are invited to join Rosalind Wiseman, an internationally-recognized author, mom and expert on teens & parenting for a fun-filled evening of mother-daughter bonding. Rosalind Wiseman is perhaps best known for her New York Times bestselling book “Queen Bees & Wannabes” which was the basis for the movie Mean Girls, and remains a leading resource for parents and educators on raising tween and teen girls. In addition to celebrating Rosalind’s latest books, the tour will feature an interactive discussion about confidence, friendships, common mother-daughter challenges, and concrete strategies for parents and girls to navigate conflicts with dignity. A Q&A session and book signing will follow. The two-hour event is sure to get mothers and daughters talking, laughing and connecting.

Moms will receive Queen Bees & Wannabes: Helping Your Daughter Survive Cliques, Gossip, Boyfriends, and the New Realities of Girl World and daughters will receive Rosalind’s debut young adult novel Boys, Girls, and Other Hazardous Materials.