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Watts, Woodberry Play Musical Chairs

Woodberry to move to Pfoho as Watts takes University Hall position

By Rebecca D. O’brien, Crimson Staff Writer

Less than a month after a Pforzheimer House administrator left to pursue a career as a Baptist minister, two seasoned College officials have moved into resulting vacancies in the House’s administration and the College’s housing office.

Sue Watts, who has served as the assistant to the Quincy House Masters since 1987 and as a member of the Quincy administration for 23 years, will move to University Hall to become the College’s new housing officer—a post that oversees the first-year housing lottery, House data and building management. She will take the place of David Woodberry, who has been the College’s housing officer for three years.

Woodberry will become the new House administrator in Pfoho—a position somewhat analogous to that of the assistant to the Masters in most Houses—with oversight of House events and finances.

Woodberry, who served as assistant to the Leverett Masters before he became the College’s housing officer, has been straddling the Pfoho and University Hall posts for the past four weeks.

“It’s really nice to be working with students again,” Woodberry said. “It’s such a wonderful work population.”

Associate Dean of the College Thomas A. Dingman ’67, whose office supervises House life, said Woodberry had helped “enormously” in University Hall by organizing House records and providing computer training for others in the office.

“We’re going to miss him,” Dingman said.

Dingman said that Watts emerged quickly as Woodberry’s logical replacement.

“We had a strong pool of candidates and we interviewed a number of people and thought that she could hit the ground running,” Dingman said. “We knew she had enormous credibility among administrators and staff at the College.”

Of the 13 Houses, Lowell and Pfoho are the only two Houses with “House administrators” instead of “assistants to the Masters.”

The distinction between the two titles is primarily in terms of organization: unlike the assistant to the Masters, the House administrator directly receives reports from people in the office of the senior tutor and the House Master. In most respects, though, the two posts have similar responsibilities.

Watts, who found out about the job on April 16 but made her acceptance public over the weekend, will move permanently to her University Hall office after Commencement. Until then, she will split her time between the two jobs.

“I announced it after the Quincy Housing lottery, because I didn’t want to make any additional stress for the students,” Watts said.

Quincy House Master Robert P. Kirshner ’70 said that Watts’ presence will be missed in the House.

“Whenever you come into the House office, there is always somebody there—a tutor, a student, another staff member—and Sue is subtly helping them figure out what they should be doing,” Kirshner said. “She is the soul of Quincy House.”

Sharon Holt, Pfoho’s outgoing House administrator, departed last month to head a Baptist ministry in Methuen, Mass. According to Dingman, Holt said she received the calling at age 14 and has been considering this move for many years.Kirshner said nobody has been selected yet to take Watts’ place.

—Staff writer Rebecca D. O’Brien can be reached at robrien@fas.harvard.edu.

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