Monday, May 23, 2005

William Henry Cruickshank, Jr. BSBA 1949

Bill Cruickshank turns 80 today. Is there anyone who doesn't know that Bill is one of Babson's great treasures? Before Babson, Bill was a decorated member of the 10th Mountain Division. This ski-trained unit fought the mountains, weather, and the Nazis in Italy. Bill graduated with the Class of 1949, Babson's first big post WWII class, earning the new three year Bachelor of Science in Business Adminstration. After graduation he became involved in the Alumni Association initally at the local level in Boston. In 1981 he was elected President of the Babson College Alumni Assocaition. While Bill spent most of his professional career with David L. Babson of Cambridge he has also been a teacher, writer, and member of various boards including being a member of the Corporation of Babson College. (He has been a husband and father, too, but I can't speak to that.) After retiring from D. L. Babson he went to work full time for the Alumni Office of the College. In 1988 he shared the honor of Volunteer of the Year with his fellow '49er" Howard Goff. (An imposing pair to say the least!) In 1994 Babson College named its alumni leadership award for him (Cruickshank Alumni Leadership Award).

It took me a while to "impose" myself on him but soon discovered that it was not an imposition. From our first meeting he was generous with his time, he was patient with my questions, and he shared his knowledge of the institution and its members with wonderful clarity and candor. Above I began a statement with "Before Babson" and it occurs to me that it is difficult to believe that there was ever such a time at Babson that one might call "before Bill Cruickshank."

I wish you a very happy birthday Bill!

Rip

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