Feature Stories Campus Events

Nellie Rice Retires after 53 Years at W&L

It’s the end of an era. After 53 years and 7 months at Washington and Lee, Nellie Rice is retiring. Her last day is today, Friday, Aug. 31.

A member of the Student Affairs staff since 1991, she served as the executive assistant to the vice president for student affairs and dean of students. In that capacity, she coordinated Parents and Family Weekend, one of the most popular and successful events on the University calendar every fall.

“I am so grateful to Nellie for all she has done for me during the last year,” said Sidney Evans, who became vice president of student affairs and dean of students in June 2011. “She has patiently guided me through processes large and small, always with a smile on her face. I feel so very fortunate to have had the opportunity to work with her.”

Nellie’s first day at W&L was Feb. 1, 1959, the year that Evans Dining Hall and Baker and Davis residence halls were completed. Before becoming a mainstay of Student Affairs, she worked in the Alumni Office and for the ROTC (Reserve Officers’ Training Corps).

Nellie also served her colleagues all over campus through her contributions to the Office Staff Employee Advisory Committee and the University Safety/Environmental Committee.

She even shared in winning an award of excellence from the Printing Industries of Virginia, for the brochure for the 2009 Parents and Family Weekend, which she created in partnership with Communications and Public Affairs.

Nellie worked with the local chapter of Habitat for Humanity, arranging for visiting families to stay with locals during Parents and Family Weekend rather than at hotels; the families then donated money to Habitat. “The program is a lifesaver to those parents who realize at the last minute they can attend but are unable to find motel rooms,” Nellie said last year, “or to those parents who just want to stay with a local family.”

A celebration of Nellie’s stellar career at W&L will take place later this fall.