SALEM, VA—Roanoke College President Sabine U. O’Hara is pleased to announce the naming of two residence halls for retired Clarence P. Caldwell, vice president - finance, emeritus, and Rev. Guy “Tex” Ritter, associate professor of religion and philosophy, emeritus. Caldwell and Ritter were informed of the honor on Tuesday in a luncheon overlooking the construction site. Caldwell Hall and Ritter Hall will be two of three residence halls under construction as part of a $9.5 million residence hall complex. The third building remains unnamed at this time.
The residence halls are named for Caldwell and Ritter at the request of Roanoke College Board of Trustee member Nancy Baird Mulheren ’72, who pledged a $2.5 million gift for a new residence hall. The gift was presented as a tribute to the style and generosity of her late husband, John Mulheren ’71, who died last year at the age of 54. “The Caldwells and Ritters are mentors who touched our lives,” Nancy Mulheren said. “Clarence Caldwell is the man who always kept his eye on meeting the tuition needs of students. Without him, John could not have stayed in school.”
“Tex Ritter is a symbol of spirit and generosity,” Mulheren said. “He always has a great story to tell and he is anxious to share a lesson in life. Plus, he mentored John in ‘pranksterology!’ It was Tex who allowed the historic obelisk to be built in secret in his garage.”
“When buildings are named it is a very special occasion for a college community to celebrate,” President O’Hara said. “The very opportunity to name a building speaks of the generosity of those who support the college with their gifts, their service and their dedication. Nancy Mulheren is such a member of our college community. It is Nancy’s generosity that enabled us to expand our building project to three new residence halls for our upper-class students. Clarence served the college for 36 years as vice president for finance. His financial savvy and loyalty put the college on the solid footing we needed to expand our programs in quality and academic reputation. And Rev. Ritter served the college for 27 years as associate professor of religion and philosophy. His ability to connect with students and to draw them into his stories is legendary. We are grateful for the generosity of people who have touched and continue to touch the lives of generations of students.”
The three new residence halls under construction will provide housing for 156 students. The buildings, to be located near Market Street at the current site of the college’s tennis courts, are scheduled to be completed for the opening of school in the fall of 2005. Roanoke College has not built a new residence hall since 1968. Residence halls have changed much since that time. This particular complex of residence halls will feature 12 or 14 single rooms around a common living room, kitchen and study area—similar to many students living together in a large house. The buildings will have patios on the ground floor, an open atrium inside and a fountain in the courtyard.
Roanoke College, the country’s second oldest Lutheran-related college, is an independent, co-educational, four-year liberal arts college. Roanoke is one of just 270 colleges nationwide with a chapter of Phi Beta Kappa, the nation’s oldest and most prestigious honor societies. Roanoke College is listed in U.S. News & World Report’s Best Colleges Guide as a national liberal arts college. The Princeton Review names Roanoke as one of the “best in the mid-Atlantic.” Roanoke’s 1,900 students represent 39 states across the U.S. and 25 foreign countries.