Two Influential Professors Retire from HNU

Holy Names University celebrated the legacy of two influential retiring professors this spring. Dolores Grunbaum, PhD joined the Holy Names campus in 1975. In her many years of service to the University, she taught countless students and held academic leadership positions. Anne Laskey, who has worked at HNU for 21 years, is director of the Kodály Center for Music Education. Grunbaum and Laskey were honored at a May 5 celebration where they were presented with captain’s chairs bearing their names.


The chair presented to Dr. Dolores Grunbaum included an inscription bearing her name and her years of service to the University.

Dr. Grunbaum, a native of Argentina, worked for Holy Names University for 39 years and previously served as the chair of the Division of Math and Sciences.  She received a licenciatura in physical chemistry from the Universidad Nacional of Cordoba, Argentina, and a PhD in chemistry from City University of New York. Dr. Grunbaum taught chemistry in Argentina and New York before coming to California. During her teaching tenure at HNU, she maintained an active research collaboration with University of California, Berkeley chemists, received a National Science Foundation grant for her work, and published widely.

“Dolores Grunbaum was the consummate teacher with high standards that she never compromised,” said Lizbeth Martin, vice president for academic affairs at HNU. “Demanding the best from her students, they worked hard but appreciated her dedication to her discipline and her determination that her students learn chemistry properly. One student comment says it all, ‘The best chem teacher (I) ever encountered. Willing to go above and beyond to make sure her students succeed in a difficult class.’”

As a professor of music and director of the Kodály Center for Music Education, Laskey has taught pedagogy, practicum, and folk music at HNU since 1993. Laskey earned a MA in music from Claremont Graduate University and a Kodály Specialist Certificate from Holy Names. She previously served as a music specialist at the Convent of the Sacred Heart in San Francisco for 12 years and as assistant conductor of the San Francisco Boys Chorus for five years. Laskey was a board member of the Organization of American Kodály Educators (OAKE) for three terms. She received OAKE’s Outstanding Educator Award in 2008, and HNU’s Faculty Award in 2011.

“Anne has provided 21 years of inspirational service to the HNU community and to future musicians and music teachers around the world,” Chair of the Department of Music Steven

Music students react to the recognition of Director of the Kodály Center for Music Education Anne Laskey at the Founders’ Day celebration on April 23.

Music students react to the recognition of Director of the Kodály Center for Music Education Anne Laskey at the Founders’ Day celebration on April 23.

F. Hofer, PhD said. “She has always gone above and beyond the call of duty to ensure that her students received the best education possible. As Zoltán Kodály said, ‘only the best is good enough,’ and Anne Laskey is the best.”

Grunbaum and Laskey were recognized at the Founders’ Day celebration in April along with HNU staff retiree Marilyn Goddard. The Sophia Center’s Michelle Dwyer said that Goddard, who served in an administrative role for the culture and spirituality program for 25 years, made a profound impact and was the program’s “anchor.”

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