Non-Teaching testimonials

Tai Soo Kim Partners, Award Winning Architects:

 Partner in the firm: “Rick is a terrific writer who is dedicated to his art. I’d recommend him to anyone looking for an experienced person to write proposals, press releases, and other marketing material. He’s easy to work with, and a great team player.”

Kaman Aerospace Corporation:

 HR Director “I want to wish you the best of success in any future employment you obtain. Although the company policy prevents me from providing a written reference, I will always be willing to provide an oral reference, if requested by your future employer. You’ve been a significant contributor to making Kaman Performance the high quality newsletter it is today. Again, thanks for all the hard work and good luck in the future!” 

A Kaman employee supervisor  “Good morning Rick, first things first, sorry to hear you are leaving. Your contributions and in depth articles have been terrific. We didn’t have such coverage before you arrived, I doubt we will after you’ve left.”

 A Kaman employee supervisor “Boeing, IAMS and PTI representatives (and by extension – US Navy through SPAWARS and MANTECH) were very pleased to see articles in the July 2000 KP about Raymond Engineering work with Lean Enterprise and Pathways. In fact, Joe of PTI asked for five copies to take with him and he suggested that I bring 5 to 10 more with me to our next Pathways workshop in St. Louis. Great work and thanks for the great write up!” “It’s been a pleasure to work with you over the last couple of years and you’ve done a great job on the KP and articles on Middletown (Raymond Engineering). Your successors will have a lot to accomplish to catch up to your work.”

From the company president: “The newsletter has been improving in recent months, more interesting and better written. This issue was best one yet.”

An employee: “I would like to thank you, as an individual I thought you brought new light on Kaman Performance, with great professionalism as well as great public relations. I personally gained knowledge from my dealing with you. Good luck.”

Cambridge College (see links to booklets in the Consulting tab):

 A Ph.D. Consultant to Cambridge College, Massachusetts (went on to become a college president): “This third in a series of Alumni Profiles booklets is one of the best pieces we have ever created at Cambridge College. I am awestruck by the statements and reflections. Each statement is a testimony to what this college does and how it is transforming lives at ages 30,40,50 and beyond. This project is going to shape the branding and marketing campaign of the college for this year and beyond.” “The Alumni Profiles booklets have made a big difference in our recruitment, along with the newsletters over the years. Inquiries about our National Institute for Teaching Excellence, for excellence, have skyrocketed.”

 A featured alumnus of Cambridge College, Social Worker III, Mass. Dept. of Social Services, Dorchester: “What can I say….Except….THANK YOU, OUTSTANDING, GREAT JOB, TERRIFIC, WONDERFUL. I think this about covers it! your Alumni Profiles booklet on those of us who have the M.Ed. in Counseling Psychology simply looks great! I hope it will bring about a new dimension into my life.”

University of Hartford

Humphrey Tonkin, President: “On behalf of the University, I am writing to thank you for your support of Project PRIDE during the past academic year. For the past month, we have been reviewing the project and preparing a final report for the State of Connecticut. By all accounts, the project was a great success, surpassing all expectations in terms of the number of students served and the quality of programs offered. The superintendents were particularly pleased with the contribution made by the UofH and I wanted to take this opportunity to thank you personally for the time and effort devoted to this project.”

 A Special Assistant to the President:  “I just want to thank you for your work on Partners, our Educational Main Street newsletter. It turned out to be an attractive and informative publication, and all the reactions I have received have been positive. President Tonkin also expressed his satisfaction and appreciation.”

 An Executive Associate to the President: “I want to personally thank you for all your efforts and assistance you provided us with last week in typing and researching the `honorary degree’ packages. The Committee was most impressed with the packages and extends its compliments to all who helped put it together.”

 Stephen Joel Trachtenberg (SJT) former President, UofH (went on to be President, George Washington University – now retired): “Rick, I am truly impressed by the manuscript you have provided about the University of Hartford in the community. It’s really nifty! It will make a nice mailing to the legislature etc. I’m also frankly bowled over by the News Sources directory. It’s an absolutely first-class piece of work and it must have taken you countless hours. I can’t help but believe that this is an important document, both in terms of media coverage it’s likely to induce and because it provides a dramatic statement of the extraordinary resource called the University of Hartford. Might I have a few more copies to share with the Board of Regents?”

SJT “Thanks so much for sending me the assorted directories and for your efforts with the UofH Speakers Bureau. By way of a symbolic note of appreciation for your committed efforts, I enclose one of my special UofH lapel pins. I hope you will wear it with pride. It’s one of a limited number.  P.S. If you have any extras of those materials, you might want to send them to the Executive Committee of the Board of Regents. I think they ought to see what you’re doing and take pride in it as I do.

SJT: “Thank you for writing the chapter on UofH for the Yearbook of American Colleges and Universities. A+. I kid you not. This is a first class piece of work!! Thank you! You have done yourself proud and turned out a great job.”

Director of Development (went with SJT to  GWU): “I wanted you to know how delighted I was with your recent report on the speakers Bureau activity. I think that you have done an extraordinary job at creating from rubble a program of which we all can be proud. Your talent and dedication to this project not only helps build the image of the University in the marketplace but provides additional important insight to the faculty and staff who have an opportunity of participating as speakers. There is good substance to these efforts and tremendous long-range benefits.”

Director, Connecticut Space Grant Consortium:  “Please send over 25 more of the University in the Community brochure. I can’t tell you how useful it’s been — giving a concise picture of the University’s community service is particularly important when dealing with federal funders.”

Also relating to the CSGC: “Dear Rick, I was delighted that we could have mon Astronaut Jim Irwin for your press conference. I am sure that he added a note of reality and authenticity to the great work your people had prepared for the announcement of the grant. Even though I was pessimistic about working it into the schedule, your persistence and dedication to your job paid off. You did a beautiful job and we were delighted to be a small but important part of it.”

 Director of Development: “Could you give me a copy of the University in the Community? It should be very helpful to me in writing proposals. And congratulations — that material is a necessary part of any fundraising argument we put together!”

Director of DAES:  “Bravo to you and the staff for the University in the Community booklet. Nicely done and certainly presents the University in a positive supportive posture. Special corporate friends and prospective clients are potential recipients. One hundred copies would be a good amount if possible.”

 R.N., Chairman, Dept. of Nursing:  “Recently Rick developed a brochure for the nursing program. On behalf of the department, I am writing to express our appreciation for the fine job that he did. He was very cooperative and willing to share ideas. His patience in trying to understand all our mechanisms for advanced placement credit is to be commended. We are grateful for the excellent quality of the finished product.”

 Director of Bilingual Education (went on to head The Independent Sector):  “I want to let you know that the press conference arranged by your office (News Bureau) was excellent. Everything went off smoothly and professionally. Rick Walker and Robert Loy were terrific. They demonstrated competence, professionalism and a very pleasant, cooperative manner.”

MPA Program Director (went on to become an MIT prof, author and I Emanations Press published his booklet of poetry): “I want to express my deep gratitude and appreciation for your help and cooperation on the HUD grant. Your input and dedication resulted in an overwhelming number of applicants. Moreover, our work has been highly looked upon by the people at HUD and hopefully this will help to increase our funding in the future years.”

Director of Continuing Education and Professional Development:  “This past week, we signed a contract with the Hartford Teachers Center to become the primary C.E.U. provider for the Hartford Public School system. Out of this arrangement, we hope to generate significant revenue for the institution. Moreover, it provides us with an incredible opportunity to fulfill our service commitment to the public schools, both in Hartford and hopefully in the surrounding school districts in the future. The point is that I wanted you to know that Rick played a key role in nurturing this relationship and assisting my staff in developing this and other linkages in the school systems. I truly appreciated his efforts on our behalf and look forward to furthering the cooperative spirit that he has worked so hard to create.”

Associate Professor of Rhetoric:  “Your article was well informed, not only about my work but about Raymond Carver’s writing. My associate Kevin Rita agreed with me that your piece in many ways did better justice to THOSE DAYS than even Garret Condon did in his essay for the Courant. I’m honored by the care you put into the article. Thanks for an elegant piece of work. Your essay represents all of us — you, me, Carver, and the University — particularly well.”

Professor of Communication:  “I am writing to thank you for your letter of support for my promotion to full professor. I am happy to announce that the application was successful. I received compliments on the arrangement of my portfolio, and I am sure that your letter contributed to my favorable review.”

 Linda Hirsh, Hartford Courant reporter: “Rick Walker is on his toes when it comes to promotion. In 1987, he had designed a UofH program to attract academically-inclined high school seniors. My daughter enrolled in a philosophy course that got her through her senior slump. While my husband Allan was registering her, Rick struck up a conversation with him. Rick had known my writing from a previous publication and quickly found out that I had started a new beat at The Hartford Courant writing third edition Hometown profiles. Instantly, Rick recalled the names of faculty members living in the third edition area who would make good profiles. He sent me his card. As soon as I called, he gave me the lowdown. Not only did he know the members’ vitae, but also some wonderful sidelights. For instance, a professor of technical engineering recommended by Rick also de-iced planes at Bradley and cracked ice for drinks at the Wampanaog Country Club bar. That was just a teaser. Rick was expecting his most recent resource book to come in that week. Why not stop by and pick it up? By my second week on the beat, I had a goldmine on my desk. I’ve written perhaps 10 stories about UofH staff from Rick’s resource book. All received acclaim from pleased UofH officials. They must know they have a gem in Rick Walker. I did not fully appreciate that gem until I tried to make contact with other colleges. Foolishly, I thought that there would be a Rick Walker in each college – which is not the case.  I know what captures my imagination. This gifted public relations man does too.”

Professor of Psychology: “Rick has been proactive rather than reactive in the way he does his work. Rick is extremely loyal to the University and he possesses a great deal of accumulated knowledge and experience that represent a very substantial asset to the institution. The Speakers Bureau that Rick has developed is a very worthwhile mechanism for enhancing the University’s presence in the community. Some of the off campus settings in which I have been a main speaker as a result of Rick’s efforts have been scenes of very significant power, influence and donor potential from the standpoint of University interest.”

Professor of Biology:  “When I was arranging symposia for high schools on our campus, Rick found names and addresses of key individuals. I was working with a short time schedule and without Rick’s help, I would have had a disaster. Rick understood my problem and went out of his way to provide a solution. This attitude and ability is precisely why he is so valuable. When you have a problem and you don’t know where to look for advice, ask Rick. He is a talented writer and has helped rewrite material that I was preparing to advertise programs on our campus. Rick is extremely effective as an interface with the community. I have participated in his speaker’s Bureau and believe this to be an important vehicle not only for enhancing the University’s image but for translating academic issues into public relevance. I would like to see greater opportunity for faculty to teach in the public arena. No one is better able to facilitate this than Rick Walker.”

Associate Professor of Physics:  “I particularly want to comment on the outstanding job Rick did last semester. I invited Sheila Tobias, a Sigma Xi National Lecturer, to the University in order to speak with faculty and students, and to deliver a public lecture on educational issues relating to science and mathematics. Ms. Tobias is both nationally and internationally known for her work; so it was important that the University obtain sufficient publicity about her lecture. Prior to her visit I had several meetings with Rick; he suggested that we contact both secondary schools, libraries, and institutions of higher education. After consulting with me he then went on to write up copy for the publicity. He was also involved in determining sources of funding for the mailings. And he followed up to see that all the appropriate tasks were done. thanks to him the event was a great success. People came from around Connecticut and there were even some interested from out of state. In addition, a feature story in The Hartford Courant about Ms. Tobias made ample mention of our school.”

 Associate Professor of Rhetoric:  “In all my dealings with Rick I have been impressed by his keen intelligence, boundless energy, and creative flair. He is a journalist of wide experience, and his organizational skills are superb. Best of all, he is a delightful colleague and reliable friend. Over the years, Rick has written a number of stories on me for the University’s alumni newspaper, The Observer. These were uniformly accurate, insightful, and lively. In addition, he ably managed the University’s Speakers Bureau, an outreach program in which I was active. Finally, I had the pleasure of serving as a reader of Rick’s master’s degree thesis for Trinity College. In all these efforts he demonstrated superior communication skills, both oral and written. The thesis in particular, a study of the writer George Orwell, struck me as first-rate research.  In 1980 he also wrote a cogent and thorough account of our Writing Resource Center Conference. I particularly admired the way he represented the many different views expressed at the meeting, and how he captured the spirit of the group. I sent the essay on to UConn and the Board of higher Education, with the feeling that what he did will lead to good things for the project — and for the UofH.”

OPTIONS Speakers Bureau on International Security Issues

This was a six-college Speakers Bureau located at UofH from 1991-95, and a pilot project in 12 Ct libraries was a key program. From the executive director (national office at Brown U): “Enclosed is a copy of the Evaluation Report from the “Choices for the 21st Century” library project. Connecticut Reading Connections is planning to undertake “Choices for the 21st Century” in 42 libraries throughout Connecticut next year, and the series will move on to Indiana and at least four other states as well. Thank you for your efforts on behalf of the project. I hope this finds you and your family doing well.”

St Ann AmeriCares HomeFront 2001

From the executive director of The Salvation Army Marshall House and program director of the St Ann church program. “By furthering AmeriCares HomeFront’s effort to provide warm, safe,and dry shelter at Marshall House, and supporting St Ann’s mission to serve those in need because We Care, you have helped the Salvation Army’s program of promoting self-esteem, empowerment, and self-sufficiency in families and young people. Whether you built a wall, painted a wall, or supported the builders and painters, you were a part of the team which made a dramatic improvement to that facility on May 5. The investment of sweat equity that you made in this worthwhile project will make a positive difference in many people’s lives for years to come. Many thanks for your help. God smiles brightly on you this day.”

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