Wash U Music Department Chairman, 1984-1986

Plaque presented to Michael on May 4, 1986

In September, 1984, the Washington University Music Department chairman resigned suddenly (St. Louis Post-Dispatch; Student Life). The university needed a strong administrator to run the department and so they approached Michael, asking if he would do the job.

He was not a musician (in fact, he was quoted in the Post-Dispatch as saying all he could play was the phonograph). However he knew a lot of the faculty already, in part because Jessica had been the harpsichordist for the Wash U Early Music Ensemble roughly a decade prior.

Thus, he was chairman of the department for two years (David's junior and senior years at Wash U), and he chaired the search committee to find his own replacement.

He worked mornings in the Music Department and then went across campus to his Physics Department office for the afternoons.

Shown below are photos from the May 4, 1986 party celebrating his chairmanship as he wraped up his tenure there. He was presented with a "Lifetime Honorary Chairman of the Music Department" plaque.
(Photos by David)
MWF music dept party #1 MWF music dept party #2