Briefly Noted

Issue Date: 
April 6, 2009
Paintings by Pitt studio arts student Staycee R. PearlPaintings by Pitt studio arts student Staycee R. Pearl

Pitt Studio Arts Holds Annual Student Exhibition

The works of 30 Pitt studio arts students are featured in the 2009 Studio Arts Student Exhibition, which runs through April 25 at the University Art Gallery in the Frick Fine Arts Building. Gallery hours are 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Mondays through Fridays and  on Saturday, April 25.

Among the media represented in the show are painting, drawing, sculpture, printmaking, and digital imaging; the works are by both seniors and talented underclass students. A faculty jury selected the pieces.

At noon on April 15, student artists will be in the gallery to discuss their work and answer questions.

—Sharon S. Blake

Rubash Lecture in Law, Social Work Set for April 9

ShawnDya Luisa Simpson, civil court judge of the City of New York, will deliver the annual Norman J. and Alice Chapman Rubash Distinguished Lecture in Law and Social Work at noon April 9 in the Barco Law Building’s Teplitz Memorial Courtroom. Simpson’s talk is titled “The Blend of Professional Expertise: Law and Social Work in Legal Decision-making.”

In the fifth year of a 10-year-term as judge, Simpson serves on the Manhattan Criminal Court, where she hears more than 700 cases a week involving everything from troubled teens to celebrities in disputes. Prior to her election as judge, Simpson was one of Manhattan’s most experienced and accomplished prosecutors, having successfully convicted more than 90 percent of the defendants she prosecuted.

A visiting professor at Emory University School of Law in Atlanta, Simpson completed her education at Pitt, earning a BS degree in 1987 and a JD degree in 1990.

The Rubash Distinguished Lecture Series was established through gifts from Norman J. Rubash, a 1957 graduate of Pitt’s School of Law, and his wife, Alice Chapman Rubash, a 1956 graduate of Pitt’s School of Social Work. Each year a distinguished individual in the fields of law and social work is invited to the University to present a public lecture.

This program has been approved by the Pennsylvania Continuing Legal Education (CLE) Board for two hours of substantive CLE credit. For more information regarding CLE credit, call 412-648-1305.

—Patricia Lomando White

whitfieldMark Whitfield

Pitt Jazz Ensemble’s Spring Concert Planned for April 9

Mark Whitfield, critically acclaimed as one of the most dynamic guitarists on the New York jazz scene, will join the Pitt Jazz Ensemble on stage for the band’s annual spring concert at 8 p.m. April 9 in the Assembly Room of the William Pitt Union.

Whitfield, who has collaborated with Sting, Dizzy Gillespie, Herbie Hancock, Wynton Marsalis, and many other artists, will first perform with local professional musicians and then with the ensemble itself.

The Pitt Jazz Ensemble comprises approximately 20 Pitt jazz student musicians, including jazz vocalists. They will perform under the director of Leon Lee Dorsey, Pitt assistant professor of jazz studies and coordinator of the Jazz Studies Program.

Whitfield is an alumnus of Boston’s prestigious Berklee College of Music and he launched a career in New York City in 1987 that included gigs with some of the nation’s finest jazz musicians. In September 2005, Whitfield became a member of Berklee’s faculty as an artist in residence. In addition to his teaching, Whitfield tours the country and performs in as many as 100 concerts a year with jazz trumpeter Chris Botti. Whitfield’s latest solo effort, Songs of Wonder, is a tribute to the music of the legendary Stevie Wonder.

Admission is $10 for the general public and $5 for students. For more information, call 412-624-4187.

—Sharon S. Blake

Pitt Partnership for Food 2009 Food Drive Begins

The University will hold the Pitt Partnership for Food 2009 April Food Drive throughout the month. Proceeds will benefit the Greater Pittsburgh Community Food Bank.

In order to maximize donations, organizers are using old and new contribution initiatives. As in previous years, the University has agreed to match each food contribution with an additional unit of food, and contributors can also donate food online at half the retail price at Additionally, participants have been given a special challenge for this year’s food drive: Estimate your daily expenditure on lunch and donate the cost of at least one lunch a week to the Greater Pittsburgh Community Food Bank.

Pitt’s past food drive efforts have produced stellar results. For more than a decade, the University has ranked among the 10 most successful Pittsburgh-area employers in the annual spring food drives. Over that time period, Pitt’s contributions have totaled nearly two million units of food.

There will be about 500 drop-off boxes in visible locations across campus. For assistance or questions, contact Steve Zupcic at 412-624-7709 or

—Anthony M. Moore