Dean Grover C. Gilmore, PhD
Jack, Joseph and Morton Mandel Dean in Applied Social Sciences
Professor of Psychology and Social Work
Dean Gilmore in the News:
Mar 25 2016
It is with deep sadness we announce the passing of Joseph Mandel, who along with his brothers Jack and Morton, transformed our school with their generosity and steadfast commitment to creating leaders in social change. He died Tuesday, March 22, at the age of 102.
“Joe and his brothers Jack and Mort have been visionary philanthropic leaders who have been committed to making the world a better place. I will always remember Joe with a broad smile on his face as he listened to our social work students describe the work that they do to better people’s lives and build stronger communities. He leaves a rich legacy of people whom he supported who are fulfilling his mission,” said Dean Grover C. Gilmore, the Jack, Joseph and Morton Mandel Dean in Applied Social Sciences, pictured at left with Joe Mandel in 2008 at a luncheon celebrating the school’s Mandel Scholars.
Joe Mandel also leaves a beloved piece of artwork on campus. An avid sculptor known for his artistic creativity, he created the brightly-colored modern metal sculpture in the back courtyard of the Mandel Community Studies Center, which he donated to the center on November 5, 2007. It is adjacent to a plaque that dedicates the building in memory to the brothers’ parents, Rose and Simon Mandel.
Case Western Reserve University President Barbara R. Snyder said, “We are saddened to hear of the passing of Joseph Mandel, and feel profound sympathy for his entire family. With his brothers, Jack and Mort, Joseph transformed exceptional success in business to philanthropic engagement that has touched literally thousands of lives, including many members of the Case Western Reserve community.”
Born in Poland in 1913, Joseph C. Mandel was a business leader, philanthropist, and co-founder of Premier Industrial Corporation in 1940 and the Jack, Joseph and Morton Mandel Foundation in 1953. One of the largest nonprofits in America, the Mandel Foundation supports leadership education programs in its own institutions and at several universities internationally, including this school and the Mandel Center for the Humanities at Brandeis University.
“The hallmark of our philanthropy is our commitment to invest in people with the values, ability and passion to change the world,” say the Mandel brothers about their giving — a quote that hangs in the lobby of the Mandel Community Studies Center, which houses Mandel School’s class and meeting rooms on the first floor, as well as two of the school’s research centers on the second floor, the Center on Urban Poverty and Community Development and the Begun Center for Violence Prevention Research and Education.
“My brothers and I are proud of our over 50-year association with Case Western Reserve University. In 1988, we were honored to add our family name to the Mandel School of Applied Social Sciences,” said Mort Mandel, chairman and CEO of the Mandel Foundation, in 2014. Most recently, the Mandel Foundation served as the lead donor of the Mandel School’s building renovation project. The $4.95 million lead gift was part of an $8 million award made in 2013 — one that also endowed the dean’s position.
Jack Mandel, the eldest Mandel brother, died at 99 in 2011.
Feb 23 2016
From action magazine, Fall 2015/Winter 2016 (msass.case.edu/actionmagazine):
The entire Mandel School community was deeply saddened by the death of civil rights icon Congressman Louis Stokes, who was a Distinguished Visiting Professor at the school after retiring from a 30-year career in Congress in 1998. He died August 18, 2015, at the age of 90 after being diagnosed in late June with an aggressive form of cancer.
“While I am very saddened by his passing, I rejoice in the accomplishments of his life. He truly has made a difference in our nation, our region, and in the lives of our students, faculty and staff. Each semester I read the wonderful teaching evaluations that he received. He brought advocacy and policy reform to life. He also was generous in giving his time and wisdom to everyone. He was a great man and leaves an indelible mark on our lives,” said Dean Grover “Cleve” Gilmore.
In the 1970s, then Dean M.C. “Terry” Hokenstad, PhD, worked with Stokes to establish the Washington Semester program for Mandel School students, offering the opportunity to do their second-year field placement in Washington, D.C.
“Congressman Stokes actively supported and participated in the educational programs of the Mandel School for more than 40 years,” said Dr. Hokenstad, Distinguished University Professor and Ralph S. and Dorothy P. Schmitt Professor. “He was a good friend and colleague who contributed expertise in the classroom and informal conversation. He will be missed personally and professionally.”
STOKES FELLOWS CONTINUE LEGACY OF SERVICE AND ADVOCACY
Once on faculty, Stokes made a significant impact. He and former Dean Arthur Naparstek designed the Louis Stokes Fellowship Program, which focuses on educating African-American and Hispanic professionals in community development to transform urban neighborhoods to improve the quality of life for residents through economic, housing and civic development. Since the initial cohort in 2001, more than 20 Stokes Fellows have graduated and continue Stokes’ legacy of service and advocacy.
GUEST LECTURES EDUCATED A NEW GENERATION
Students also benefitted from Stokes’ guest lectures on social policy and civil rights. His message to students was powerful and clear, and he had a great appreciation for their dedication to social work. “There is nothing better than the opportunity to serve people,” he would say when teaching. “Continue to stand for and believe in justice, eliminate pediments to equal opportunity, use your education to help people and seek justice for those who don’t have it.” To see Stokes’ lecture “Social Workers and the Policy-Making Process” that he gave to the class SASS 478 Macro and Policy Practice Skills on April 2, 2013, visit bit.ly/StokesOnSocialWorkers
A PERSONAL RELATIONSHIP TO SOCIAL WORK
Stokes often told social work students, “I want to thank you [social workers]. You sure changed my life.” Stokes grew up poor in a low-income Cleveland neighborhood and was visited by social workers as a child—including the late Mandel School alumna, Ella Mae Cheeks Johnson, MSSA 1928, who made a lasting impression as someone who did her job with compassion. In 2005, she reconnected with him and they recalled each other fondly, as she wrote in her memoir, It Is Well With My Soul: The Extraordinary Life of a 106-Year-old Woman. He told her that he found it “incredibly rewarding to interact with students committed to helping build a more just society, working to eradicate the effects of injustice and discrimination.”
A STUDENT REMEMBERS
Intensive Weekend student William Kennedy wrote a moving tribute to Stokes that was on display at the Western Reserve Historical Society’s lobby during the museum’s memorial to him, recalling three times he was taught in class by Stokes and their subsequent conversations.
“I’ll always remember the first thing he said [in class]: ‘Anything you do is not too small and is more than was there before.’ For a weekend social work student in middle adulthood, it validated my presence in the classroom and confirmed that I still made a difference as a ‘change agent.’” To read his full remembrance—including how Congressman Stokes was related to funk pioneer Rick James—go to bit.ly/KennedyRemembersStokes
THE LEGACY OF LOUIS STOKES
To learn more about his life, watch a memorial video, see a photo gallery and read news coverage of Congressman Stokes’ passing: bit.ly/RememberingStokes
To read Dean Gilmore’s remembrance in the university’s magazine: bit.ly/GilmoreRemembersStokes
To make a gift to the Mandel School in his memory, go to msass.case.edu/give and note the gift is for the “Louis Stokes Fellowship Program Fund.”
Feb 19 2016
Dean Grover “Cleve” Gilmore and Associate Dean Sharon Milligan were guests on “The Leadership Hour,” the national VoiceAmerica internet radio show hosted by alumna Christine Cowan-Gascoigne, MSSA 2004. The show’s topic was “Leading to a More Just World” and they discussed the Mandel School’s 100-year legacy of creating leaders in social change. Listen online: http://bit.ly/1Qwgmra