Annual Meeting at 10:30 AM followed by brunch at 11:00
Special UNM Guest Speaker: Patricia McArdle, UNM Alumna and Author of the book Farishta "Qatra, qatra darya mesha."
Drop by drop it becomes a river.
Patricia McArdle (BUS '72) is a retired Foreign Service Officer. Before joining the Department of State, she served for two years as a Peace Corps volunteer health educator in Paraguay and for three years as a U.S. Naval Communications officer in Morocco. Her last overseas posting in 2005 was as the U.S. government's senior diplomatic representative in Northern Afghanistan where she was based with a British Army infantry unit. During that year, she became aware of the serious shortage of wood for cooking fires in rural areas and it’s impact on the women, children and environment of Afghanistan. She began to build solar cookers and demonstrate them when she went on patrol with the soldiers. She has continued to promote this simple solar thermal technology around the world on a volunteer basis since her retirement. She currently serves on the board of directors of Solar Cookers International. While a student at UNM she worked as a Lobo reporter and took journalism classes from Tony Hillerman, who urged her to enroll in at least one course on fiction writing before she graduated. She will be forever grateful to Tony for that advice. After taking the recommended course, she published her first work of fiction--a true confession story for which she was paid $250--a princely sum in the early 1970s for a Peace Corps volunteer who made only $120 per month. Her fiction writing career was put on hold during her many years of government service, but in 2009, she published a second short story, The Roads are Closing for which she won first prize in the annual Foreign Service Fiction Writing contest--and another $250. In 2010 she won the Grand Prize for General Fiction in the Amazon Breakthrough Novel Award contest. Her debut novel Farishta, which was inspired by her year Afghanistan was published by Riverhead Books on June 2, 2011. The paperback version will be released on June 5, 2012.
Take I-95 South from the Beltway to the Belvoir/Newington Exit. Turn right and you will connect with the southern leg of the Fairfax County Parkway. Take the Parkway east to its end at Richmond Highway (Route 1). Turn left. The Tulley Gate entrance to Fort Belvoir is at the first light, on the right. You MUST use this entrance and present a picture ID to the MP at the gate for each occupant of your car. Continue on Pohick Road to Gunston Road and turn right. Turn left on 21st street, turn right on Belvoir Drive, and then turn left onto Woodlawn Drive. This street runs directly into the Officer’s Club. The Valley Forge Room is to the left immediately after entering the front door and then the first right down the hallway. Please let us know if you plan to attend no later than Wednesday, March 14th. Security restrictions can change for a variety of reasons, including the possibility of lots of construction on the base.