John has been involved with the GTU since 1998, and was Chairman of our Board of Trustees from 1999 to 2007. Among his many efforts to ensure the GTU’s academic, programmatic, administrative, and financial success, he endowed a Presidential Scholarship, and helped launch the capital campaign with a major gift; helped draft the Common Agreement between member schools and the GTU; and spearheaded the committee to find GTU President James A. Donahue. He embodied the GTU’s interfaith mission by creating an interfaith lecture series honoring his father at Temple Emmanuel and by supporting the creation of the Center for Islamic Studies. He played a major role in bringing about needed repairs at the Flora Lamson Hewlett Library. In 2010, John Weiser was awarded the President’s Medallion in recognition of his tremendous and multi –faceted service to the GTU.
John is retired after serving for 18 years as director and general counsel for Bechtel Group, Inc. He says, “My family fled Europe in 1938, our lives upended by religious persecution. Many people acting on their religious beliefs extended a hand. From these early experiences came my deep belief that religion matters, and that it can motivate people to help their neighbors and our world.” Weiser is the current chair of the United Religions Initiative, a global community dedicated to promoting daily interfaith cooperation. He also serves on the board for the National Catholic Reporter. John and his wife Maria have eight children and eleven grandchildren.
Sharon-Gay Smith, Consortial Registrar (1971-2008)
Sharon-Gay Smith was born in February 1942. She spent her youth travelling around the world with her family, courtesy of the US Army and Air Force. She graduated from the University of California, Berkeley with a degree in anthropology and political science, but also attended CDSP for two quarters.
She served the GTU for 37 years until she retired in 2008. She began in the Registrar's Office in 1971 staffing the PBX system and typing transcripts by hand. After serving as assistant to Betty Over for 18 years, she became Consortial Registrar upon Over's retirement in 1989. It’s not easy to recognise the work that she did in writing, but everyone loved her and relied on her. She was integral to the background work of the GTU. She saw the GTU Consortial Registration through its transition from all paper to computers (on multiple registration systems). While this is hardly romantic sounding, the GTU could not have operated the way it does now without her and her expertise facilitating the way. Many who remember Sharon-Gay describe her as embodying the “spirit of the GTU.”
Sharon-Gay worked with 5 of GTU's 6 deans and all 6 presidents.
Upon learning of GTU's intentions for recognizing individuals for their contribution as part of our 50th Anniversary, all of the registrars for the member school unanimously nominated Sharon-Gay for her 37 years of service to the GTU and the community within it.
She died in August 2009 and will be remembered and loved by the staff, students and faculty of the GTU Consortium.
Lucinda Glenn is a good Methodist, a good crocket player, a wonderful singer, and a great archivist.
Lucinda served as the GTU archivist for over 23 years, retiring in August 2012. Single-handedly she managed the operation of the manuscript and institutional archives, establishing the collection as one of the best in the country in the areas of religion and social justice, new religious movements, and religious activities in 20th century California. Outside of the GTU, she held leadership positions in the Society of American Archivists and the Society of California Archivists, of which she was president in 2008-9. She is recognized as an authority on processing religious collections and managing the privacy and confidentiality issues related to pastoral work.
Lucinda grew up in a military family in Orange County. She moved to northern California for her higher education. She received a BA in Medieval English History from the University of California, Berkeley, in 1972; a MA from Pacific School of Religion (her thesis: “John Wesley’s Development of a Doctrine of the Church”) in 1980; and a MA in Librarianship with a specialization in archives from the University of Denver in 1981.
After graduation, she served as a missionary to rural parishes in Tennessee and Mississippi for the United Methodist Church. Returning to the West Coast, she worked in a Methodist’s women’s center in San Francisco’s Chinatown. Following a brief stint working in the GTU library, Lucinda was hired in 1982 for three positions: secretary to Dean Claude Welch, secretary for the Center for Jewish Studies, and coordinator of the GTU Placement Office. In 1989, she became the archivist, gathering materials from closets, basements and other dusty corners of the GTU, and began the archives program.