Karen (Wolozin) Starr, J74, J01P, A05P of Wayland, MA

BA, English, 1974

MEd, Boston College, Educational Media

MS, Simmons College, Library and Information Science

Current Occupation: Librarian, The Rivers School, Weston, MA

Previous Occupations: Library Director, Thayer Academy, Braintree, MA; Resource Coordinator, Facing History and Ourselves, Brookline, MA

Tufts-affiliated Activities: Alumna: Member of TAAP and regional Chair, 1997-Present; Traditions, Communication, and Homecoming and Reunion Alumni Committees; Packard Society Member, Sol and Robyn Gittleman Circle. Undergraduate: Tufts-in-London, Torn Ticket, Pen, Paint and Pretzels (3Ps), volunteer in local elementary school

Other Professional/Volunteer Affiliations and Activities: Head of Rider Registration and Team Leader for the Pan-Mass Challenge, 20+ years; Active member of the Cooperative Library Association of Greater Boston and National Association of Independent School Librarians.

Candidate Statement: Simply put, Tufts is part of my DNA! My parents met and married while attending Tufts and were lifetime supporters of the university. While they were delighted that my sister and I became graduates, my dad was most excited when his grandchildren carried on the tradition. And of course, my grandchildren are being primed to become fourth generation Jumbos!

When I entered Tufts in the Fall of 1970, the campus was just settling down from the events of the previous spring turmoil after the Kent State shootings, and protests against the Vietnam War continued. The draft lottery was a major concern of the male students. It was the first year of co-ed dorms, and female faculty were fighting for gender equity. For me coming from a small private school, Tufts was a time where I began to see myself as part of a larger and more diverse community, where I ventured out of my comfort zone, spent an entire school year abroad, and where I could immerse myself in the theater community (and meet some now well-known alumni). Additionally, throughout my adult life I have maintained my relationships with fellow classmates and professional colleagues.

When I talk with prospective students, I am often asked what Tufts meant to me and how it has impacted my life and career. The first thing that I talk about is Tufts' long-time commitment to Study Abroad and how the school foresaw the now commonplace programs. The second thing I talk about is being involved in the drama and dance department. While only a bit player, the theater became a special home where I interacted with incredible talent and creativity. I also was able to take classes offered by the museum school. Tufts nurtured my love of the arts and the value of the arts in our lives. Finally, I talk about the opportunities that undergraduates have to work directly with professors and their research. 

I have been fortunate to live in close proximity to campus and to have two children who are graduates of Tufts. My son played lacrosse, and it has been fun to see a reawakened Jumbo pride both locally and nationally. The continuing support for athletics and the resultant building of school spirit plays an integral role in alumni involvement.

Over the years, I have followed the evolving mission and vision and its emergence of Tufts as a nationally recognized institution. I remain staunchly supportive of this mission and vision for all of the university programs and schools. However, I have become most passionate about the Tisch College for Civic Life. Recently, I have been able to attend many of the Distinguished Speaker Series and love listening to students who engage the speakers in thoughtful question-and-answer exchanges. Tisch College today is a reflection of the decades of commitment to the value of active citizenship in the education of college students. As an educator, I can’t think of anything more vital than this in confronting the challenges that we face in today’s world. I am particularly proud of initiating a collaboration with the current dean, Alan Solomont, and Amy Enright, Director of the Rivers School Center for Community and Civic Engagement (and Tufts alum). If elected to the Council, I would like to promote further relationships with secondary schools and the summer opportunities for students and to expand awareness of the Tisch initiatives.

Tufts Family: Susanne and Allen Wolozin (parents), Nancy Allen (sister), David Epstein (cousin), Susan Taymor Sagy (cousin), Emily Starr Alfano ’01 (daughter), Andy Starr ’05 (son)

Karen (Wolozin) Starr, J74, J01P, A05P