The Producer’s Guild of America has announced that the 2010 Vanguard Award will go to Joss Whedon ’87. Whedon, the producer of the TV shows “Dollhouse,” “Firefly,” “Angel,” and Buffy the Vampire Slayer, as well as the Internet sensation “Dr. Horrible’s Sing-Along-Blog,” is also a renowned director and screenwriter. The award is presented for “achievements in new media and technology.” Whedon will receive the award at the 21st Annual PGA Awards ceremony on Jan. 24, 2010 at the Hollywood Palladium in Los Angeles.
Previous Vanguard Award recipients include George Lucas, James Cameron, John Lasseter, MySpace CEO and co-founder Chris DeWolfe and president and co-founder Tom Anderson, and YouTube founders Chad Hurley, Steve Chen and Will Wright.
A grant-funded prison education program created by two Wesleyan graduate students, Molly Birnbaum ’09 and Russell Perkins ’09, while they were undergraduates, was profiled in The New York Times. Administered in Connecticut’s Cheshire Correctional Facility, the program provides Wesleyan-level courses for selected members of the prison’s population. The inmate-participants must meet rigorous entrance requirements.
Rich Benjamin ’93 talks about his new book, Searching for Whitopia: An Improbable Journey to the Heart of White America, in Time. Benjamin discusses how “Whitopias” in America threaten to create a form of racial Balkanization within the country.
Julie Lasky ’82 will be one of the exhibit curators at the opening of the new Design Museum Holon in Tel Aviv, Israel. According to The Jerusalem Post, the museum will be dedicated to design and will highlight Israeli artists.
Wesleyan President Michael S. Roth reviewed Daniel Goldhagen’s Worse Than War: Genocide, Eliminationism, and the the Ongoing Assault on Humanity recently for The San Francisco Chronicle. In the book, Goldhagen attempts to show that “that genocide is an extension of the politics of ‘eliminationism,’ which is decisively shaped by political leaders and fueled by profound and widely shared hatred. However, Roth found Goldhagen simple-minded in many of his conclusions and proposed solutions.
Jed Hoyer ’96 has been named general manager of the San Diego Padres. According to a piece in The San Diego Union Tribune, Hoyer, who had been the assistant general manager of the Boston Red Sox, impressed the ownership of the MLB team immediately during his initial interview. In a separate story in the Union Tribune, Mark Woodworth ’94, Wesleyan’s baseball coach and former teammate of Hoyer, is quoted at length about what Hoyer brings to the Padres. At the ceremony, the Padres owner gave Hoyer a Padres shirt with 11, the number Hoyer wore for Wesleyan, on the back. More background on Hoyer is available on the Athletics Website and in a feature about Hoyer in a 2006 issue of the Wesleyan Magazine.
WNPR News featured a story on Jessica Posner ’09, Wesleyan Writing Fellow, and Kennedy Odede ’11 and the school for girls they built over the summer in Kibera, Kenya. The school, which the two students built using a Projects for Peace Grant, is up and running.
Dan Wolf ’80, talks with CNN and Fortune Magazine about learning to fly during his summers as a student at Wesleyan, how he came to create Cape Air, and some of the keys that has made the venture and his tenure as CEO so successful.